If there was one type of watch that has really dominated the watch world for the last few years, it’s been the vintage-inspired diver. This isn’t a revelatory statement. It’s about as obvious as saying the sky is blue. And don’t get me wrong, the team here at Worn & Wound, including myself, all love a good vintage-inspired diver. Whether a recreation of a design from a brand’s own archives, to a watch that just looks like it could have existed in the mid-twentieth century, these watches tend to ooze style and captivate collectors in a way that few other genres can. From Tudor Black Bay 58s to Lorier Neptunes and Baltic Aquascaphes, vintage-inspired divers are like catnip for watch enthusiasts.
But, what if you’re sick of it? What if you’re tired of every release playing off of collective nostalgia for a heyday of design that many of us, including yours truly, weren’t even alive to appreciate? What if you just want a gosh-darn, good-looking, modern-day dive watch? Something perhaps aware of the past (after all most dive watches owe some level of DNA to the iconic-divers of the aforementioned period) but contemporary in appearance, attitude, and execution. The watches below are not 38mm, they don’t have domed acrylic crystals, and that’s the point. These are dive watches of the now, with specs and looks to match.
Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 600
When Christopher Ward added their C65 range of vintage-inspired divers they gave themselves the opportunity to fully modernize their C60 diver line, creating the best version yet in its third incarnation (reviewed here). With this in mind, they went for relatively neutral and balanced dials with gloss surfaces and applied, faceted, rectangular markers. Their bezels are also gloss, made of pristine ceramic, and feature fully-lumed markers, which is quite uncommon. The case is the star of the show, however, featuring their exceptionally well-finished “light-catcher” design. Available in 38, 40 or 42mm, all with 600m of water resistance, these relatively modest-looking watches don’t skimp on performance, which is all the more impressive considering their starting price of $795. Not ones to limit your options, you also have a choice of colors and straps, as well as GMT varieties, and titanium 1000m chronometer versions for a bit of a premium. Christopher Ward