Think about it for a second… What is the most important feature of a dive watch? Its water resistance? Its second hand? Its bezel? Of course, it is a combination of these elements however, pro-divers won’t contradict me, THE ultimate feature of a dive watch is the minute hand. For safety reasons, the minute hand is key to calculate remain diving time and decompression stages. Oris knows about it for already some years and comes back with a new version of the Regulateur ‘Der Meistertaucher’, a watch intensively thought, built for pro-divers and with the appeal of its original display.
Oris’ reputation in terms of professional-oriented dive watches is not to be proven anymore. Think about the Aquis Depth Gauge, the Prodiver 1000 or simply the Aquis Date. All of them are sturdy, well conceived, purpose-built watches with real recognition as instruments by those who, in the end, have authority: divers. These watches were not created to be desk-divers (even if they might be often use as such… but that’s another debate). In addition to these, Oris has what I consider “a step further” for dive watches, a watch that not only offers the water resistance, the compliance with ISO-6425 standards or the required robustness, but that emphasizes the crucial feature of a dive watch: the minute hand, by relying on a regulator display. The copy watches with self-winding movements the Oris Regulateur ‘Der Meistertaucher’ and, for Baselworld 2017, Oris has decided to give it a facelift, accordingly to the new Aquis collection.
Why highlighting that much the minute hand on a dive watch? In fact, combined to the rotatable bezel, the minute hand is key to calculate remaining dive time and to measure decompression stages, two elements crucial to the security of divers. If you think about it, what should be the best way to have a well highlighted minute hand? The answer is simple: a regulator display. A regulator relies on non-coaxial hands, meaning the hour and minute hands are separated. The minute hand is in the centre, while the hour, an important feature of course but secondary when diving, is shown by a hand on a subdial at 3. This isolates the key piece of information for a diver, who can set dive time by aligning the minute hand to the 60-minute scale on the uni-directional rotating bezel. Other features of this display are a small-second (a running indication is required by ISO standards) and a date.
This feature is key in the unique charm of this ‘Der Meistertaucher’, not a new watch for Oris, however a niche piece that became sort of an icon (In 1999, Oris became the first watch company to introduce this traditional complication into a dive watch). To better integrate the exquisite Oris Aquis replica watches in the collection, the brand gave it the same facelift as the 2017 version of the Aquis, meaning a slightly slimmer case, redesigned crown protection piece, reshaped lugs and different indexes on the dial. Overall, the watch feels a bit more compact than before and also more modern.
The 43.5mm of the Oris fake watches with black dials are entirely devoted to efficiency: lightweight thanks to the use of titanium (for the case, the buckle and the additional bracelet), well protected, designed for divers, with a 300m water resistance and an automatic helium escape valve, secreted on the side of the case at 9, a rubber strap or a bracelet, both with quick-adjust extension system (to strap the watch around a diving suit). The dial also follows the same idea, with clearly identified hands, thanks to bright colors: all secondary indications are white painted (hours, seconds, date, indexes) while the main indications – hours and first 15-minutes of the ceramic bezel’s scale – are painted in bright red. This display is powered by an automatic calibre, the Oris Cal. 749, based on Sellita SW 220-1.
The new Oris Aquis fake watches with steel cases keep the appeal of the model, meaning the unique charm of the regulator (as being one of the only regulator dive watches), combined with a great conception. Complication is here used in one goal only; creating an even safer and more practical watch. This Oris ‘Der Meistertaucher’ is a niche offer but one that is really relevant. The 2017 facelift is welcomed, as bringing modernity to this proper tool. Price: EUR 2,900, including titanium bracelet, additional rubber strap with folding buckle and water-resistant case with strap-changing tools. Available in May 2017.