To be considered a dive watch, a timepiece has to be rugged. It has to be able to survive the rigours of a deep dive and come out of it the other side keeping perfect time. It’s why most diving watches are rugged, chunky pieces of metal, all the better to protect the movement, while any thoughts of elegance fall by the wayside. Not so in Reverie’s latest collection, the simply-named Diver.
This isn’t the usual, 60s-inspired watch trying to recapture the glory days of diving that we’ve gotten all too used to recently. Reverie have approached the humble tool what through the lens of their own, invariably elegant school of design.
Reverie, after all, is not generally a maker of tool watches. Since 2014, their limited edition mechanical models have opted for grace and beauty above all else, something that seems on the surface at odds with something as practical as a diver. Reverie’s take however, proves differently, hitting the sweet spot between utilitarianism and aestheticism.
At 40mm of stainless steel, the case is already far more svelte than most chunky underwater timepieces out there. More impressively however, it’s just 11mm thick – this despite boasting a sapphire caseback and true diving bezel. That makes it thinner than almost any other diver, while retaining the same hard-wearing necessities to survive at up to 200m down. The end result is that for slimmer wrists like ours, it’s one of the few proper divers out there that’s actually wearable.
The trio of dials, available in grey, blue and a stunning olive green are gorgeously guilloched, with legibility maintained by using a sector layout and contrasting lumed indexes. In the daylight, the light shimmers off the engraved colouring; in the dark, you can clearly see the necessary information at a glance. Of the three our favourite is the olive; it’s more interesting than the standard forest green that’s more common, especially among divers, and strikes a great balance between elegant minimalism and ornate finishing.
Inside, the Diver uses a Miyota 9039 movement, but not like you’ve seen the microbrand staple calibre before. In reflection of the movement-maker’s Japanese origins, and to tie-in with the nautical theme of the watch, the rotor has been engraved with a ‘Seigaiha’ pattern of sea and waves. It’s certainly better to look at than the usual branded rotors that finish a third-party movement and it’s great to see a brand not only admit their outsourced movement, but embrace it as a feature.
Of course, Reverie being the microbrand they are, you don’t just get a great-looking, incredibly practical timepiece; you get it at a steal. The Diver is currently on Kickstarter and early birds can get their hands on it for just US$325. Even after the campaign has run its course though, you’re looking at a full retail price of US$500. That’s under £400.
Price & Specs:
Case/Dial: 40mm diameter x 11mm thickness, stainless steel, guilloche dial
Water Resistance: 200m (20 bar)
Movement: Miyota 9039, automatic
Power Reserve: 42h
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds
Strap: Brushed stainless steel bracelet with extra rubber strap
Price: US$325 (early-bird price) or US$500 (retail), limited to 175 pieces per colour
More details at Reverie Watches.