If you take a moment to consider the Swatch Group’s current state of affairs, there are a lot of good things going on. Admittedly, some brands seem a bit lost, but for the most part, we’re seeing some very nice moves by brands like Tissot, Hamilton, Longines and lately also Certina. We’ve had the funky DS-2 revival, the very good DS Action Diver Titanium and the chunky yet retro-cool DS Chronograph Automatic 1968 to play with! And Certina isn’t done after those three, as there’s also the more modern and sports-oriented Certina DS-8 range to consider. And it turns out to be a very good everyday watch, providing excellent value-for-money yet again.
Admittedly, the Certina DS-8 is a watch that can be easily overlooked but if given a bit of attention can win over quite a few people, I’m sure. It’s not going to break any records, nor does it look extremely outspoken but it ticks a lot of boxes most people might want in a reliable mechanical watch intended for everyday use.
Starting off with the things that matter on the outside, the Certina DS-8 has a 40.5mm wide and 11.62mm tall case with a simple yet effective design. It is available in stainless steel, black PVD coated stainless steel or even full titanium, so there are multiple options! Each case shows a mix of brushed and polished surfaces and comes with a fixed bezel. The crown is protected by smooth, protruding crown guards and there’s a sapphire crystal on both sides.
The dial of the DS-8 range comes in four different flavours, depending on the exterior material and/or finishing. All are given a sunray-brushed finish, but the dials come in different colour combinations. First up is a simple black dial with steel applied indices and hands, set inside a steel case. Next up is a black dial with gilt markers and hands, available in the black PVD coated case. The third option is an anthracite dial with gilt markers and hands, in a steel case and worn on a leather strap. Lastly, and this is the most sporty option, is a blue dial with steel markers and hands available in titanium only. The aluminium bezel insert comes in black or blue, with a gilt or silver one-minute scale.
The choice of movement for the Certina DS-8 will come as no surprise, as it uses the ETA Powermatic 80.611. This very capable automatic movement uses 25 jewels, ticks at a rate of 21,600vph and offers a very good 80 hours of power reserve. The Nivachron balance spring ups the magnetic resistance. Just like in other Certina watches using this movement, the rotor is branded with a vintage font and the statement “mechanical watches since 1888”.
The Certina DS-8 collection once more shows its versatility when it comes to the straps and bracelets. Every single reference comes with its own matching strap or bracelet. As a result, you can have the anthracite and gilt DS-8 on a leather strap, the stainless steel and black dial on a steel bracelet, the black PVD coated DS-8 on a matching black PVD coated steel or finally, a full titanium bracelet. Pricewise the DS-8 shows a decent and concise spread, starting at EUR 680 on leather, EUR 695 for the full steel, EUR 755 for the black PVD coated version, and EUR 795 for the full-titanium.
All in all, the Certina DS-8 is a very good every man’s friend. You could argue it feels a touch generic in style, but that’s not necessarily bad. After all, not everyone is looking for super-expressive, extravagant watches. The DS-8 is solidly built, looks very good, comes in a myriad of styles to cater to your personality, and is equipped with a very good movement. And the best part? It’s also very affordable, considering the fact you can have a full titanium, sports-oriented watch for under 800 euros. What’s not to like about that?
For more information, please visit Certina.com