Back in April, we introduced the Dietrich SD-1 Skin Diver, an entirely new collection from Dietrich combining elements from previous models with funky cool new features. In terms of design, it ties in with the Organic Time and TC-Pure that left quite an impression in recent years, but the Dietrich SD-1 Skin Diver is also a watch that offers a peek into the future of the brand. All the more reason to go hands-on with this unusual dive watch.
The founder of the brand, Emmanuel Dietrich, is often regarded as a maverick in the industry. Emmanuel does things a bit differently, thinks outside of the box, and explores the unbeaten path in creating his watches. Styled in an organically fluid way, you’ll find unusual materials, shapes, or textures in almost all his creations. What started with the fittingly named Organic Time evolved into the Perception, the Time Companion, and now this: the SD-1 Skin Diver.
Dietrich’s watches certainly have a unique appeal, something that perhaps will not impress the purists among us, but luckily there’s a huge crowd of people very much into this sort of thing. That is not only our assumption but is backed up by the fact that just about all his editions have long been sold out, and things are moving fast with the latest creation.
The SD-1 Skin Diver comes in two variants: Pacific Blue or Suave Black. From a first look at the watch, you’ll notice how it differs from other (dive) watches on the market, and that’s a positive thing in this heavily contested segment. The SD-1 Skin Diver combines elements from previous collections and turns them into a distinctly new design. The brushed and polished steel case measures a modest 38.5mm in diameter and 12mm in height. A screw-down crown with a sapphire crystal insert and solid caseback keeps out the water to a depth of 150 metres.
The dial’s aura, for lack of a better word, really shines through when seen in the metal, much more so than in the press images and renderings we’ve seen before. The gradient black or blue base dial, with a sapphire dial on top with the indices, looks very intriguing. It plays with the light a lot, as the printed indices on the sapphire dial (in white Super-LumiNova) constantly cast shadows on the lower dial. This concept is amplified by the sapphire bezel that matches the colour of the dial with white markings underneath.
Like we stated earlier, the Dietrich SD-1 Skin Diver combines elements, like the very recognisable set of hands, from previous collections like the Organic Time. The indices all have a soft, rounded look, including the triangular marker at noon and the 6 o’clock index framing the date window. Underneath that very lovely dial ticks a Sellita SW200 automatic movement. It runs at a frequency of 28,800vph and has 38 hours of power reserve. While this certainly isn’t a shocker of a movement, it does its job very well and proves to be a reliable workhorse.
Another design cue carried over from all the brand’s collections is the use of hexagonal shapes. The bezel, for instance, has six knurled sections, giving it a hexagonal shape. If you look closely at the bezel, you’ll notice the curve of each knurl is slightly offset against the perfectly circular insert. Hard to see, but a refined touch. More hexagonal shapes can be found on the bracelet and the rubber strap. The links for the bracelet are all six-sided and have a brushed top with polished edges. The rubber strap has a middle section with a hexagonal motif. Both fit the watch rather well, but to us, the winner has to be the central hexagonal link of the honeycomb-style bracelet.
Regarding the availability of the Dietrich SD-1 Skin Diver, it’s worth pointing out that the Pacific Blue model is, sadly, already sold out. As we mentioned, things are moving fast with this new collection, and with a limited production of 300 pieces for the first batch, the watches might be hard to find. As it currently stands, follow-up batches might become available later. Nevertheless, the Suave Black is still available for USD 1,050 on the steel bracelet or USD 970 on the rubber strap. That’s is about EUR 890 with the bracelet and EUR 825 with the strap. That includes shipping but excludes taxes and import duties when applicable.
All in all, it is a very interesting design with lots of fun design touches. Combined with a reliable Swiss movement, very wearable specifications, and an attractive price, we’d say the Dietrich SD-1 Skin Diver is a watch worth your consideration. And if this is the direction Emmanuel Dietrich is taking the company, we’ll happily wait for the next release.
For more information and to place an order for the Suave Black, please visit Dietrich.com.