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Oris Divers Titan “C” Small Second, Date Titanium Ceramic Watch Review

Oris Divers Titan "C" Small Second, Date Titanium Ceramic Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

My most recent new watch was an Oris Diver Titan “C” Small Second. Before discussing the watch itself I’d like to discuss how I came upon it. Watch enthusiasts really need a 12 step program. We are hardwired to always think about watches, our best bet is to channel our addiction to timepieces properly. Watches are where my brain wanders to during supposed “down time.” I often think about it as the thrill of the hunt. How many times have the readers of aBlogtoWatch been obsessed about their next purchase, only to get it, and start the process all over again? The DSM should have an entry for this behavior (perhaps it already does)…

So, recently I decided it was time for another watch (one can never have too many, right?). What was my hunt going to be for this time? Obviously, something that I’ve never had before. I was drawn to titanium for its light weight, and its color. All of my sport watches are steel, so this was going to be a completely new category for me. I was very excited about doing my research, and trying some contenders on for size (literally). Since I spend many hours at the gym, it had to be durable, and also washable (being semi-germaphobic).

Oris Divers Titan "C" Small Second, Date Titanium Ceramic Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

It was time to set my new acquisition parameters: I wanted a luxury/sport/titanium watch on an integrated bracelet, with an automatic movement, that is Swiss-made. Having an automatic movement is romantic, and in a silly sort of way. I love all things digital, and I always have the latest phone, laptop, tablet, etc… I am an independent inventor of new technologies. However, having an item that is strapped to my body, well that level of intimacy requires it to be special. Mechanical, yes, but mainly made by hand. I actually enjoy watching the second hand slowly move around the dial. Romantic? Yes, because of the incredible history of mechanical horology. The movement at the watch’s center, with its vibrations that are measured per hour, or second, is to me, like a human’s heart which also (hopefully) beats with great regularity.

I choose a watch with Swiss origins, because for centuries, Switzerland has been the heart of the watchmaking industry, and has an incredible history of craftsmanship and innovation.

I wanted the watch to be uniform in color, meaning no black center links on the bracelet, or jarring details. The bracelet should be an enhancement, or supporting player, not the focal point. I firmly believe that the focus should be on the watch face, bezel, and case. A different color bezel would be fine, because it can highlight the dial, creating a nice frame, like you would find on a painting.

My expectations and hopes were for a moderately priced watch, from a well-regarded manufacturer. I set an upper price limit of roughly $5,000.00, which I thought seemed reasonable, and would allow for many options.

Some watches I liked, but had to disqualify:

– Breitling’s Aerospace at 42mm: it is has a quartz movement, and not an automatic.

– Tag Heuer: only black and not naked titanium, and none on a bracelet.

– Bell & Ross: titanium models yes, but nothing on a bracelet I could find.

– Ball: some titanium models, but the bracelets are steel and titanium on the models I was looking at.

– Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean: clocking in at 42mm which is good and available in titanium. I have always loved it but at $8,600.00, it was more than I was interesting in spending on this particular purchase.

– Chanel J12 Chromatic Automatic 41mm: titanium ceramic, for $6,600.00. This was the closest, and would have been an excellent choice, save that I did not want “titanium ceramic” at this time. I am not being difficult, but I did set goals, and a ceramic watch was not one of them (this time!). Click here to see Paul Hubbard’s review of the Chanel J12 Chromatic, that I completely agree with.

So, I was off to the stores. As much as I enjoy the retail shopping experience, I wish there was a way to resolve three issues. 1) The first one is that every retailer should have a full length mirror. Why? choosing a watch is about proportion. I am not a big guy, but I like big watches. I need to see if I can pull off a 49mm, and I can’t get that information from the silly counter mirrors that look like they came from the cosmetic department. 2) If I am trying on a watch with a metal bracelet which is usually the case, they should provide me with a small foam insert so that I can tuck it in under the clasp. This way, I can see the watch fitting my wrist, and not dangling on the end of my arm!

Finally, 3) I wish buying a watch were like buying a car. When you car shop, you get to really examine them, sitting in the middle of an empty space, in silence. You get to sit inside, and really inspect every detail, privately, while imagining it is yours. If you really like it, then you can take it for a nice test drive. At the retail watch store, you are presented with the watch, but never get “alone time.” The salesperson is always keeping their eye on you (obviously, so you don’t go running out of the store). You usually can only see two, or three at a time (insurance companies like it that way). What I really want is a quiet place to sit, and spend some time alone with the watch I am thinking about maybe buying. Wouldn’t it be ideal if you could borrow one for a day for a test run? “Gee, this looks great with Jeans, shorts, gym clothes, and a dress shirt! I’ll take it!”

Oris Divers Titan "C" Small Second, Date Titanium Ceramic Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

So eventually my process of strict elimination has me thinking about Oris. I knew that they were Swiss made, and had many titanium models. So, that would be my first stop (and my last as it turned out).

The first watch I saw was Oris Divers Titan “C” Small Second, Date watch. I was told that it was their iconic dive watch. It was titanium, had a simple titanium bracelet, a virtually scratch-proof black ceramic bezel, and three features that made it a “must have.” The second hand was odd, and beautiful, because it looked like a boat’s propeller in motion. It divided the the sixty-seconds sub dial into two thirty-second halves, sitting in a rather large titanium framed circle, at 8 o’clock. One half of the hand had lume, and the other did not. It was something I had never seen before. I pictured the enjoyment the “propeller” would bring as it paddled its way around the sub dial. The case is 47mm wide, so that allows plenty of space for that detail to be viewed. The dial also had a wave pattern, that completed the “propeller in the water” effect.

The flange ring had a gentle curve that was titanium against the black dial. It created a great frame for the dial, and gave the watch great dimensional qualities. The “flange ring” is the ring where the dial meets the case of the watch. And, the final detail that sealed the deal, were the two offset crowns. I have a watch with crowns at 2 o’clock and at 4 o’clock and find them very appealing, because they are uncommon, instead of having the usual 3 o’clock placement. The crown at 2 o’clock sets the watch, and the crown at 4 o’clock is the manual helium valve. I am not a diver, but it was an authentic feature that any serious divers watch needs to have. more »



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  • Ulysses31

    Not the most exciting Oris, but I love the design language of chunky links and a hefty case and lugs.

  • rpsmith01

    Great looking watch!  Any reason you did not consider the Tudor Pelagos?

  • nateb123

    Easily my favourite Oris.  Just so many little things that make it entirely unique all brought together in one very cohesive package.

  • kapurkk

    The Rolex submariner is the only watch in this category that does it all. Followed by the Omega Seamaster. Everything is is a compromise , a decision which fine watch buyers and collectors inevitably regret down the years.

  • MarkOs

    Nice looking has a certain sparkle in the photos that is not evident on the company web site photos.
    Ref the comment from kapurkk I could not disagree more about Rolex, to me that is the lazy unimaginative choice, the “posh ” choice for someone not really interested in watches.

  • Neil C

    Now that is a beautiful watch.

  • Piero

    Nice review William, the watch looks great! Do you think that titanium can be more easily scratched than steel?

  • William S Lerner

    Hi Piero,
    That is a great question, and one I should have included in my review! Titanium is far more easily scratched than stainless steel. It is also prone to show more fingerprints on the shiny surfaces. That said, technically it is stronger, and is about half the weight. The majority of the time the user will look at the dial and the bezel. This is where this watch excels, especially for the price point. The bezel is Ceramic, which is virtually unscratchable and, of course it has an extremely scratch resistant Sapphire crystal. These two elements will keep the face an bezel “scratch free” and since it is a genuine diver, you can wash away any fingerprint marks. All watch bracelets do show wear, so if you buy it, just be a tad more cautious like I will. The watch is incredibly light for it’s size, and that was worth having a few extra scratches occur.
    Thanks for the question!

  • William S Lerner

    nateb123 I have to agree. It looks like nothing else on the market, and the design elements, colors and textures are elegantly harmonious.

  • Piero

    Hi, I have an Omega Seamaster 300 m and my girlfriend has an Oris Aquis and I have to say that the quality of Oris is really great. Moreover the movement in the Oris Aquis is the same as the Titan in the review, the Sellita SW 200-1, and in a month it has gained only six seconds… So very precise. Rolex and Omega probably are offering more quality that you cannot immediately see, but you are also paying for it (quite a lot) .

  • rich1983

    why did you not think about a tudor pelagos? I am about to get this and now I am thinking perhaps the Oris?

  • William S Lerner

    Hi Rich,
    I did not enter the Tudor Pelagos into the pool of possible watches, because it was not widely available at the start of the process. I think a review of a watch that sounds ideal and is not available is frustrating. Watch acquisition should be fun, and the purchase should be readily available.
    The Tudor Pelagos is a great watch, with an ingenious spring extension clasp. I also think it is a great value, considering the construction, and quality. As a collector, I try to choose watches that are unique, and unlike anything I may have. The Pelagos follows the tried and true “Rolex Submariner” style. There are a multitude of watches out there in every price range that are very similar. The Oris I choose, looks like nothing else on the market.
    I hope this explanation helps!

    Thanks for your question,

  • William S Lerner

    Hi Rich,
    The Tudor Pelagos was not included, because it was not readily available at the start of the process. What is worse than reading about a watch, that you think is just right, and not being able to get it? I think that is frustrating, and buying a watch should be a fun experience, and offer instant gratification, if possible!
    The Tudor Pelagos is a great choice. It is beautifully designed, and a great value considering the quality, construction and the fact that it is a Rolex relative. It is of course, far more expensive than the Oris. It’s design language is similar to the Rolex Submariner, and there are so many watches that used the Submariner as the design inspiration. The Oris I choose, looks like nothing else, and I do like the polished titanium features.
    Ariel’s review of the Pelagos watch:
    I just “Googled” the watch, and there is no direct hit to purchase the watch at retail, or any other way for that matter..  All that comes up are pre-owned models.
    Thanks for the question, and I hope my answer helped!

  • spiceballs

    Bit big for my taste nevertheless a very nice-looking watch and IMO good choice for the money – for you.  Nice review too, thx

  • William S Lerner

    If you do like the watch, I would suggest going to see it. It wears closer to a 45-46 MM. The dial is small for the overall size and the curves make it appear smaller.
    Thanks for the comment, and I am not sure if I should address you as Spice, or Mr. Balls.

  • Ryan B

    It kinda resembles the Seiko Black Monster. Nice bracelet although I wouldn’t mind seeing it a few mm wider.

  • William S Lerner

    Ryan B  
     Hi Ryan,
     I had a similar reaction when I saw the watch! I like bracelets that do not taper, as a general rule. I then looked at the 51mm Pro Diver. It has a larger bracelet in the same style and it would have overpowered the watch, in my opinion. I think they had to compromise.
    Thanks for the comment!!!

  • spiceballs

    William S Lerner spiceballs 
    Ha, Spice will do fine, thx.  So where’s Lowe?

  • William S Lerner

    spiceballs William S Lerner  
    Hi Spice,
     I don’t know what the “Lowe” refers to? Sorry for my ignorance! Please let me know. Thanks!

  • spiceballs

    William S Lerner spiceballs 
    ummm – – – Lerner & Lowe 🙂

  • William S Lerner

    spiceballs William S Lerner  
    Thanks for making me feel like a moron! I wish…Then I could buy every watch the blog has reviewed….

  • pls2k

    Great Review…!
    I always have had a great fascination for Oris Divers watches.  In fact my first watch (in the 4 digits price tag) was the Oris TT1 MEISTERTAUCHER REGULATEUR, which at first it seemed to be hard to read the time but after a day on my wrist, that small detail was not an issue at all.  I’ve had it for 10 years now and still running like new.   Need a new bezel that is as I bumped it against my door nob and left an awful scratch.
    Great brand with great designs… Thanks for sharing your post.

  • William S Lerner

     Thanks so much for the compliment. If your Oris was your first expensive watch, then it is clearly very special to you. There is only one Oris Authorized Service Center in the US. I would suggest you contact them and see how much the bezel is. Why, well you can fall in love all over again, and Oris guarantees that parts will remain in production for ten years after the last production date. Even if you just buy the part, it will give you peace of mind.
    The Watchmaker 
    379 Main Street
    Stoneham, MA 02180
    Tel.: 781-438-6977
    24 hour answering service
    Fax: 781-438-6954

  • William S Lerner

    *********I am now posting on Instagram and Twitter, Daily!
    Please follow me at: williamslerner at both, and of course, on ABTW!

  • I will definitly follow up on Twitter

    for my watch website