Aquatico brands itself as a company that builds and sells mechanical dive watches. Most of their watches can be classified as such, though I previously reviewed one of their pilot watches in their bronze Blue Angels line. I was very impressed by that watch. The company currently offers six different collections and one additional watch related to the watch in this review For this review I have a dive watch from their Oyster line. The Oyster line is available in four different color combinations; black dial/black ceramic bezel, blue dial/blue ceramic bezel, oyster white dial/ blue ceramic bezel and oyster white dial/black ceramic bezel, the subject of this review.
The Aquatico Oyster watch collection is built around a very well executed 316L stainless steel cushion case, measuring about 44mm in diameter across, 43mm across the bezel , 49mm lug to lug, 13.5mm case back to crystal with a 22mm lug width. Polished chamfers run across the upper and lower portion of the case sides from lug to lug. The case sides angle in just before the lug mounting points, which helps reduce the overall bulk of this cushion case. The etched and brushed round and flat case back is attached with five very small, recessed, round, polished head socket screws. The brushed and etched dolphin logo’d back is numbered with pertinent details about the brand, the crystal and the watch’s 500M water resistance rating. The lug design and the watch’s downward case curvature allow it to wear very close to the wrist, which is an unexpected bonus.
The fairly large dolphin logo’d, blasted and machined, eight segments, screw down crown really compliments the watch’s design. It is beautifully machined through all three sections of the 3 o’clock side of the case. The watch comes with a very durable, comfortable and attractive strap of black carbon fibre with orange stitching and a signed buckle. I prefer bracelets on most of my dive watches and for this watch I switched the strap to a MILTAT Angus Jubilee bracelet. Based on my observations, an Angus has thicker and more rounded links than a typical Jubilee bracelet. It has three rows of polished center links, brushed outer links with polished edges. The solid and milled brushed and chamfered clasp allows for six micro adjustments. Combined with screw in removable links and a very solid, flip lock and push button release, this bracelet is perfection in my opinion. I would like Aquatico to offer the watch with this bracelet and their logo machined into the clasp.
This watch has a 120 click unidirectional stainless steel, gear edged, black, polished, ceramic, Superluminova C3 filled bezel that looks fantastic. The bezel on my example has some back play, my only niggle with this watch. A red triangle surrounds the lumed pip and matches the completely red, diamond needle, lumed tip second hand. The face uses a brushed surround, sword minute and obelisque hour hand. Superluminova C3 filled, they work perfectly with the nine rectangular, one double and two single beaver toothed indices on the face that use the same lume. Combined with thin black minute/second lines on the outer Superluminova BGW9 indice ring, this watch gives off a fantastic green and blue night glow that I have not personally seen on any other dive watch. The oyster white sunburst face on this model appears silver to me. The face is tastefully logo’d, with a red 500 meter water resistance rating and indicates the watch has an automatic movement. The flat, double internal anti reflective sapphire crystal is very slightly raised above the bezel edge. The rectangular, black on white 3 o’clock date window is surrounded by a thin black line on the face while still keeping a small portion of it’s lumed indice.
Powering this watch is the world’s most popular microbrand automatic movement, the NH35a Seiko/TMI. There is nothing to say about this automatic movement except it’s an excellent choice for a watch in this price range.. With 21,600 bph, 41 hour power reserve, 24 jewels, hacking and hand winding it works as expected. Speaking of price, this watch is available for $329 US from the Aquatico website. It should be noted that for $519, Aquatico also offers the Hong Kong Diver Watches Group Limited Edition 4.0 watch. Primary upgrades include an ETA 2824-2 movement which runs at 28,800 bph with a 42 hour power reserve and 25 jewels This model watch is only offered with a black face and bezel. Unique hand colors, face printing and a white on black date window with Superluminova C1 on the dial indice ring differentiate the Limited Edition watch while including both a rubber strap and a stainless steel mesh strap. If you are looking for a very well made, high value, well finished, rugged, durable, highly lumed and comfortable dive watch with a cushion case, the Aquatico Oyster (and Limited Edition 4.0) deserve your serious consideration. aquaticowatch.com
Bert Kanne is a freelance contributor to MBWW with a love for well made dive watches and chronographs. All photos by Bert Kanne unless otherwise noted.