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Thread: Sub £500 quality/reputable divers?

  1. #1

    Sub £500 quality/reputable divers?

    Iíve been dipping my toe in the world of value divers recently and have been impressed in the main by the quality at the price point.
    It has set me thinking about what is the best at this price point? For example an established brand and a quality/serious specification.
    So far Iíve tried Precista & Smiths, Seiko Turtle, Citizen Promaster and Bulova Devil Diver.
    What others are out there.

  2. #2
    Grand Master wileeeeeey's Avatar
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    If you're happy with used the Seiko SPB079 (rubber) and SPB077 (braclet) are unbeatable for quality.

    I've had Turtles, Sumos and Marine Masters but the SPBs (077/079) are the best quality and value I've found.

  3. #3
    The Zelos on sales would be great.

  4. #4
    Master sish101's Avatar
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    Squale (especially second hand) would be my suggestion.


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  5. #5
    For that money you could get a GSHOCK Frogman. All the Diver you'll ever need in real terms.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by manganr View Post
    For that money you could get a GSHOCK Frogman. All the Diver you'll ever need in real terms.
    Good call

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by manganr View Post
    For that money you could get a GSHOCK Frogman. All the Diver you'll ever need in real terms.
    Good call

  7. #7
    Master Lampoc's Avatar
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    Orient Star make some excellent dive watches which can often be found discounted to under £500. Don't confuse these with the standard Orients - they really are a major step up in quality.

    Second hand: +1 for Squale.

  8. #8
    For a diver 200m or 500m beater watch please check>

    https://www.jfdecommerce.com/
    Last edited by Bry1975; 6th September 2021 at 16:41.

  9. #9
    Master sweets's Avatar
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    Scurfa.
    Under half the budget, and very well made.
    Personally, I prefer the non-date version in Ti, but they are not necessarily available all the time.

  10. #10
    Invicta

    Yes seriously, one of those pro diver watches cost about £60 Seiko movement and probably the same case etc as similar "Homage" watches selling for a few hundred quid.

  11. #11
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Steinhart too.

    Oh, and Hamilton has a nice diver out now, I don't know how much but I can't see it costing over £500 woth a decent spot of negotiation. Tissot Seastar.
    Last edited by Papa Hotel; 6th September 2021 at 18:13.

  12. #12
    Master sish101's Avatar
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    This Squale is slightly over your budget but is a good spec for the price:

    https://www.watchgecko.com/squale-di...-y1545silve-ac





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  13. #13
    Journeyman Longwool's Avatar
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    https://www.steinhartwatches.de/en/d...itary-new.html



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  14. #14
    I have gone through quite a few cheap divers over the years but this is the best so far by a large margin.


  15. #15
    Grand Master snowman's Avatar
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    Helm have to be on the list

    M

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    Breitling Cosmonaute 809 - What's not to like?

  16. #16
    Craftsman williemays's Avatar
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    Iíve had this Vostok Amphibian SE from Meranom for five years. It may not be the best quality or most reputable brand, but it is built like a tank, has a lot of character, is a joy to wear, and of course was very affordable.




  17. #17
    Bought a Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 600 in the recent sale for £507.

    Swiss movement
    Sapphire
    600m depth rating
    Lumed ceramic bezel
    Light catcher case.
    On the go adjustable bracelet

    Everything else at £500 is second.

  18. #18
    Grand Master
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    I've just bought a ND, Ti, 500m Scurfa and it's ridiculously good value.









    Quote Originally Posted by sweets View Post
    Scurfa.
    Under half the budget, and very well made.
    Personally, I prefer the non-date version in Ti, but they are not necessarily available all the time.

  19. #19
    Journeyman
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    Secondhand - Squale, Certina PH200, CWC Quartz....... new Lorier Neptune, Helson Skindiver, Baltic (slightly above).....lots of really good options in this price range, here are a few examples.








  20. #20
    Grand Master markrlondon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ODP View Post
    So far Iíve tried Precista & Smiths
    In that case maybe you've seen it but there's the Sewills PRS-44 in black or blue dials at £525: https://www.timefactors.com/collecti...l-diver-prs-44

  21. #21
    Master
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    NTH as well, solid build quality and nuclear lume.

  22. #22
    Grand Master
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    ....and you'd be only the second person to own one, keeping good company with Ralphy!

    Quote Originally Posted by markrlondon View Post
    In that case maybe you've seen it but there's the Sewills PRS-44 in black or blue dials at £525: https://www.timefactors.com/collecti...l-diver-prs-44

  23. #23
    Master TheGent's Avatar
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    Modified SKX for me:




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  24. #24
    Grand Master
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    True dat!

    Quote Originally Posted by noTAGlove View Post
    Bought a Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 600 in the recent sale for £507.

    Swiss movement
    Sapphire
    600m depth rating
    Lumed ceramic bezel
    Light catcher case.
    On the go adjustable bracelet

    Everything else at £500 is second.

  25. #25
    Master
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    I would scan Timefactors for options, and maybe put a WTB up.

    I think a full size or baby Dreadnought would be a good, usable diver on a budget that I would actually feel comfortable putting underwater.

    I really fancy a baby D myself but reallly have enough watches at the moment :)

  26. #26
    Grand Master markrlondon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pete-r View Post
    baby Dreadnought would be a good, usable diver on a budget
    Good idea. It looks like a lovely watch.

  27. #27
    Master OldHooky's Avatar
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    Choice, with plenty of solid options, is the problem, as this thread has shown. I'll throw in another vote for Squale. Diving heritage, with some real pedigree, and a range of watches offering "vintage" as well as current.

  28. #28
    Grand Master wileeeeeey's Avatar
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    This thread has really made me want to try a Squale, Steinhart and Christopher Ward.

  29. #29
    Master Rocket Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by boring_sandwich View Post
    I have gone through quite a few cheap divers over the years but this is the best so far by a large margin.

    That looks great, what reference is it please?

    Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk

  30. #30
    Master Tazmo61's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sish101 View Post
    This Squale is slightly over your budget but is a good spec for the price:

    https://www.watchgecko.com/squale-di...-y1545silve-ac

    Another for the Squale , great watches and great value for what you pay .

  31. #31
    Grand Master Neil.C's Avatar
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    For a cheap no nonsense diver I'd be looking to Seiko, Citizen and Orient.
    Cheers,
    Neil.

    My Speedmaster website:

    http://www.freewebs.com/neil271052

  32. #32
    Journeyman
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    Can't go wrong with a Seiko, Steinhart, Christopher Ward or a GShock

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  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by Rocket Man View Post
    That looks great, what reference is it please?

    Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk
    SNE569P1 but there are four different colour options.

    https://www.seikoboutique.co.uk/prod...egory/prospex/

  34. #34
    Master Rocket Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by boring_sandwich View Post
    SNE569P1 but there are four different colour options.

    https://www.seikoboutique.co.uk/prod...egory/prospex/
    Thanks

    I'm interested to know why you rate it so highly?

  35. #35
    Master helidoc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neil.C View Post
    For a cheap no nonsense diver I'd be looking to Seiko, Citizen and Orient.
    This

    I would take these over any microbrand.

    Dave


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  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Rocket Man View Post
    Thanks

    I'm interested to know why you rate it so highly?
    It’s extremely comfortable being a slim 10.6mm thick and with a L2L length of 46.6mm and although 38.5mm wide feels more 39-40mm. It wears like a 5 digit Submariner ND in terms of size to give you an example.

    It has very good lume which lasts all night plus once fully charged has a stated 10 months before requiring more light to power it. Mine has also been extremely accurate having not lost or gained a second in over 6 weeks.

    I think at it’s price point with a discount it’s a great grab & go watch that can be worn anywhere without any concern. The only negative I would have is the 'bracelet' which is typical Seiko but on a rubber or nato its great.

  37. #37
    Master village's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by snowman View Post
    Helm have to be on the list

    M

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    This was my immediate thought as well.

  38. #38
    Master bond's Avatar
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    Sub £500 quality/reputable divers?

    Maybe a second hand CWC rn diver or a prs3/4
    Last edited by bond; 7th September 2021 at 21:45.

  39. #39
    Master bond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bond View Post
    Maybe a second hand CWC rn diver or a prs3/4
    Other than that got to be an skx


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  40. #40
    Grand Master wileeeeeey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bond View Post
    Other than that got to be an skx


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    Wouldn't buy an SKX when the MM200 and Turtles exist.

  41. #41
    Quote Originally Posted by boring_sandwich View Post
    The only negative I would have is the 'bracelet' which is typical Seiko but on a rubber or nato its great.
    Great size and very very comfortable.

    But the bezel insert is another negative - very strange little grooves all the way around, not really evident in photos.

  42. #42
    As many have said already, may I also suggest, Vostoks for the fun factor at frivolous prices, Seikos possibly a Turtle or Arnie if you like the ana-digi Tuna look and finally an OVM from Steinhart. I had mine regulated by Duncan Potter and it's now more accurate than some of the quartz watches I own.

    ovm 28022020.jpg

    IMG_20210412_ss.jpg

  43. #43
    Master bond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wileeeeeey View Post
    Wouldn't buy an SKX when the MM200 and Turtles exist.
    Depends if you want to forgo movement and finishing for case design or aesthetic or sizing reasons. But yes they too have great qualities


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  44. #44
    Master
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    There is no better value than a Seiko turtle,they come with many colour options.

    Not only value but a good looking watch that can be used for its purpose.

  45. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by TaketheCannoli View Post
    ....and you'd be only the second person to own one, keeping good company with Ralphy!
    Yeah, what's the deal with these. I sometimes pop in to look at them but haven't (yet) pulled the trigger. I like them. Why the lack of love?

  46. #46
    Master alfat33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Papa Hotel View Post
    Steinhart too.

    Oh, and Hamilton has a nice diver out now, I don't know how much but I can't see it costing over £500 woth a decent spot of negotiation. Tissot Seastar.
    This one? Iím very happy with mine.

  47. #47
    Grand Master markrlondon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev-O View Post
    Yeah, what's the deal with these. I sometimes pop in to look at them but haven't (yet) pulled the trigger. I like them. Why the lack of love?
    I think it's because of several factors: Because Sub-alikes are a very crowded market, because these ones are rather hidden away on Eddie's site (all the attention is on Smiths at the moment), and because buying them is something of a challenge especially when you might want other higher-demand watches that Eddie has for sale and where taking the time to add a PRS-44 to your basket might actually result in you losing out on the other, higher-demand, watch.

  48. #48
    Master searat's Avatar
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    Sub £500 quality/reputable divers?

    I work in the marine technology sector and among the real hard-hat divers, youíll often see them wearing Scurfa.
    Solid, tough as nails, and the guy that gets them made, Paul Scurfield is himself a professional North Sea diver and uses them in saturation. Iíve owned most of the usual dive watch brands but Iím really impressed with the quality of construction of the Scurfa Diver One, especially at the sub-£300 price point - in terms of bezel alignment itís better than some £2000+ watches Iíve owned.
    Photo is of my titanium version.
    Cheers
    Steve



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  49. #49
    Master M1011's Avatar
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    My money would either go to Seiko or Zelos.

    Seiko you know you're paying a bit of a premium for the name, but they've got some excellent options.

    Zelos are remarkable value on release sales and offer some interesting materials, dials etc.

  50. #50
    Master Sinnlover's Avatar
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    OP I know you have tried Smiths but the new Smiths Caribbean takes some beating for a sub £500 diver.
    I bought mine wanting to try it but expecting not to like it and the opposite is true. I am very impressed for the money.
    Itís only been a week but I donít plan on shifting it on any time soon.
    They quality is up there with similar prices Seikos.
    Otherwise the default answer is 2nd hand CWC diver.

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