Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch   watch releases

Capillary-style depth gauges are nothing new or particularly advanced, but they are simple and effective. Oris has managed to design one into one of its dive watches. The result is a mechanical watch with a non-electronic depth gauge that does not cost an arm and a leg. IWC and Jager-LeCoultre already proved to us that they can make those – and that is fantastic – but they were a complication for complication’s sake because even if you choose to dive with a luxury watch, you probably aren’t going to want to rely on it as your depth gauge. When Panerai released theirs, they simply circumvented the entire issue by keeping prices high and sticking in an electronic depth gauge module. In fact, that was pretty smart of them.

This new diver is called the Oris Aquis Depth Gauge and is just that. Oris has a load of pretty good dive watches but there are a lot of them and many have seemingly small differences. On top of that, they exist in a few model families which exacerbates my confusion. ProDive, Aquis, etc… it is all the same good watch to me.

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch   watch releases

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch   watch releases

The depth gauge uses no hands and is a very simple system. The watch’s sapphire crystal is extra thick and has a groove going around its periphery leading to a hole at 12 o’clock. When inserted into the watch, this hole allows water into the groove which pushes against compressed air. The deeper you go, the harder the water pushes and this struggle of air and water can be seen on the gauge as a function of depth. The idea is a good interpretation of this concept into a watch and I applaud its inherent simplicity. I don’t however know how easy it will be to read while underwater with goggles or a mask. Probably not that hard actually (in clear water that is). Just saying that this is where a brightly colored hand would shine (literally).

The Aquis Depth Gauge watch is 46mm wide in steel and has a black ceramic insert in the rotating diver’s bezel. For the most part, the watch appears very much like other dive watches, even three-hand dive watches. It is my opinion that three-hand dive watches are the best as I prefer their legibility and straightforward features. The yellow depth gauge around the dial isn’t that obtrusive and you could wear this watch daily – even though without putting it under water, you’d sort of be cheating the watch out of its birthright – to SWIM!

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch   watch releases

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch   watch releases

Inside the Oris Aquis Depth Gauge watch is a Swiss automatic movement (probably an ETA 2824), which Oris calls their caliber 733. The watch is water resistant to 500 meters even though the depth gauge only measures down to 100 meters. Not that the majority of people will be diving that deep anyways. A fun detail is that while the gauge measures only in meters, there is a conversion scale on the back of the watch. So I guess while underwater you can take it off and see how deep you are in feet. Nice of you to add that Oris for us Americans.

In addition to the rubber strap, the Aquis Depth Gauge also comes with a metal bracelet at no extra charge. That is a good extra to have, especially since Oris watches look great on their bracelets. Overall, a very cool piece from Oris that raises their dive watch street cred all the more. Still, the depth gauge feature is going to remain a niche need and most people will opt for other pieces in their dive watch collection. Price is 3,500 Swiss Francs. oris.ch

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Watch   watch releases

Tech specs from Oris:

Oris Aquis Depth Gauge Ref. No. 733 7675 4154 Set, Ø 46.00mm

· Automatic Oris movement 733 with date window at 6 o’clock
· Stainless steel case, water-resistant to 50 bar/500 metres
· Unidirectional revolving top ring with black ceramic inlay and minute scale
· Sapphire crystal, domed and antireflection coated on both sides, features a milled channel for depth gauging and a yellow metre scale
· Rubber strap and metal bracelet as alternative
· Set includes waterproof case, separate

14 comments
CG
CG

Have Oris dive watch and like very much has been very accurate and a great backup to my computer as any dive watch should be. I like the mechanical depth gauge but the watch is 46mm, nice for the dive suited wrist but small face for 46mm and depth gauge info is rather small it would take some getting used to. the minute hand should be a different color or arrow shape so as to function more legibly with the bezel markings. Very pricey for an ORIS, seems well above the normal pricing for their non-commemorative watches.

Apdl
Apdl

How do you ensure dust or other debris does not enter that opening?


Ulysses31
Ulysses31

When I first saw this watch a few weeks ago I thought it was typical Oris in that it represented quality and relatively good value, or so I assumed.  That was before I knew the price.  As elegant as this type of depth gauge is (and inherently more reliable than a mechanical solution) I don't think it can justify the price they're asking.  There are far too many good alternatives at this level.  I'd probably get a different diver and a dedicated depth gauge for a few hundred dollars.

Hacker4748
Hacker4748

Would have loved to see some kind of demonstration. After reading the article I still have no idea how the depth would be read.

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

Interesting, but useless. I dove to 155 metres once, in crystal clear water, and at that depth I couldn't see this level of detail. At 100m, I imagine it would be much the same. The description of the technology alone denotes inexpense, so while I'm not saying the watch is overpriced, they'd be best not advertising the gauge as an addition to the overall cost I think; I certainly do not appreciate this as some noteworthy level of engineering.

PhilMaurer
PhilMaurer

@Kris C @CG @PhilMaurer  Your doing hardcore decompression, tri-mix, with staged safety divers,  diving at depths less then 200 people in the world do, and you have never dove at night?

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

@CG @Kris C @PhilMaurer never tried a night dive, and like you say, I was diving just to dive and missing out on all the marine life that got me into it in the first place. Now, I kick some fins on at a moments notice and then I'm back at the bar an hour later. Much more enjoyable.

CG
CG

@Kris C @CG @PhilMaurer  I do a lot of live aboards and diving mostly above 80' where all the fish and coral are... decompression dives left me less cocktail time in the afternoon. But night diving is always the best. 

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

@CG @Kris C @PhilMaurer yeah, I'm positive, geez. I didn't think it was this conversation worthy. At one point I thought I was training to get to 200m, but it was too expensive, time consuming, and basically useless. I don't even maintain certificates anymore; it all started just because I like fish, and I lost my way spending stupid money on equipment and classes. Now I just pack fins and a mask into my suitcase and just snorkell to see fish.

CG
CG

@Kris C @PhilMaurer  You sure it's meters and not 115 FEET, attempting a 300 foot depth on compressed air is very very dangerous... Trimix or NITROX maybe? What was your decompression strategy and MDT at 115 meters? the max for compressed air safely is around 125 feet, O2 can become toxic at 200 feet and you would be using 15x the normal rate of O2 at 115 meters.  115 meters = 377 feet

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

@PhilMaurer I almost posted a rather scathing response, but I did make a typo: it is 115m, not 155. I've never tried ADS, and I cant say it really interests me either.

PhilMaurer
PhilMaurer

@Kris C @PhilMaurer  

Considering the Max depth for a technical diver is 330ft(100M.)  No I am not....  Are you confusing feet for meters?   Notice this watch has a marking at 30 meters the max safe for rec diving?  100M is the max, but if you where diving that deep you would be on another watch anyway.

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