Diving Watches: From Sports Watches to Certified Icons
You may be wondering why I selected a watch with a list price of almost $7,000 for this category. It’s simple: You can find the Omega Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial on Chrono24 for well below $5,000. Either way, you’re getting a lot of watch for your money. The Omega Seamaster 300 has always born a strong resemblance to the original Seamaster 300 from 1957. In 2017, Omega took it a step further by releasing the 1957 Trilogy. This small series of watches contains three 60th anniversary timepieces: the Railmaster, Speedmaster, and Seamaster 300. Each was made to look like a carbon copy of their originals.
While our Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial doesn’t come from this series, it still shares the same the cool features as that vintage model: There’s a thin black diving bezel, an arrow-shaped hour hand, and huge triangle indices (in this case with faux patina). This watch does its job so well that it even accompanied James Bond in 2015’s Spectre. Inside the case, you’ll find one of Omega’s flagship innovations: the Co-Axial movement, invented by watchmaking legend George Daniels. The Omega Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial strikes the perfect balance of old and new, classic and modern. It looks as great on a metal bracelet or, as Her Majesty’s Secret Agent prefers, on a NATO strap.
The Zenith Defy Classic is best described as a modern interpretation of an amazing vintage watch. Zenith released the first Defy models in 1969. The original line of sports watches had interesting, sometimes futuristic (for the time) looks and a robust case. Even though it disappeared for a while, the Defy was never forgotten. Zenith also recognized this line’s significance, eventually leading to a much-anticipated comeback.
The company has brought the Zenith Defy up to modern standards, including a larger, 41-mm case made of titanium instead of stainless steel. However, even cooler than the new case is the new Defy’s stunning skeletonized dial. It’s perhaps the nicest skeletonized dial you can buy for under $5,000. A rubber strap rounds off the look and adds that futuristic twist we know and love from the vintage models.
What can we say about the Patek Philippe Nautilus that hasn’t already been said a thousand times before? Perhaps that it pulled Patek Philippe back from the financial brink during the quartz crisis of the 1970s? Maybe we should talk about Gérald Genta – the legendary Swiss watch designer who is also responsible for the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak? It’s said Genta sketched the Nautilus on a napkin during lunch at Baselworld 1974. There are so many interesting facts and stories about this model that only a much longer article could truly do them any justice. For now, suffice it to say that every Nautilus timepiece is true watchmaking royalty, whether it’s the original ref. 3700 from the 1970s or, like our selection, the new version of the Jumbo, the ref. 5711. The brand, watch, and designer all represent the finest watchmaking has to offer.