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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi everybody!
This is my first post after the meltdown.

We heard a lot of great and stunning stories about U1- and U2-extreme tests (thanks very much, Tim! ;-) ), but maybe some of you might wonder how the U's perform when you use them in the environment they were mainly constructed for, i.e. underwater.

I live in Switzerland, so unfortunately there is no sea just around the corner but we have a lot of beautyful deep lakes. These lakes offer a high variety of awesome divespots but it has to be said that the conditions are usually rather harsh: water temperatures are quite low throughout the year (even in summer, water temperatures at 30 meters depth rarely exceed 6 degrees celsius) and visibility is often rather poor. At this cold temperatures, it can happen that battery-powered equipment (such as dive computers) simply fail. Thus for me, a reliable mechanical dive watch is not just a nice gadget but also an important backup instrument.

A year ago, when I saw the U's for the first time, I thought that I finally found the perfect dive watch... and I was absolutely right! ;-) Unfortunately, I couldn't decide between the U1 and the U2, so I had to buy both of them! O| Nevertheless, for this reason I was able to dive-test both of them.

First I need to mention that BOTH watches perform excellent underwater. The cases are "bulletproof" and although I already dinged against various hard objects, there are absolutely no signs of wear (even though the cases are not tegimented). The fat bezel is easily ajustable even with thick drygloves. The same does also apply for the big crown. Legibility is perfect in both watches under any light conditions, although here you find little differences: On the one hand, lume is slightly better in the U1, but on the other hand the pointed arrow hands of the U2 are a bit easier to read under bad light conditions. So I guess there is a draw between the two watches. Another difference between the two U's is the crystal: while I prefer the look of the domed crystal of the U2, I must admit that I prefer the flat crystal of the U1 underwater. The flat crystal allows the time reading from a slightly flatter angle. Although the difference is no huge, this could be important because your viewing angle is already limited by the dive mask. Acuracy of both watches is very good and was never affected by the cold water temperature (as you probably all know, both U's are treated with Sinn's special temperature resistant oil, although Sinn does not point this out in the U1 specs).
The biggest problem of the U's are their strap with the huge deployment clasp. While I really like the look of it, there is no chance wearing the watch over a clumsy drysuit with that style of strap. So I fitted my U's with a nice aftermarket rubberstrap with a regular "belt-style" buckle . Because The strap was still too short, I bought myself a second strap an built a strap extention out of it (will post some detail pics later). Now I'm able to wear the watch even over the thickes drysuits.

The deepest dive I did with one of the U's (it was the U1) was about 45 meters deep (ca. 150 feet). At this depth, it is always pitch black even during day time and water temperature is between 4 and 5 degrees celsius. The U1 performed without any problems and legibility was excellent even under this extreme light conditions. Nevertheless, this was not the most extreme dive I took my U1 with me:

A couple of days ago I went ice diving, under the frozen surface of a lovely little mountain lake (altitude: 1600 meters above sea level). While I didn't worry about the cold water temperature per se, I was a bit concerned if the U1 will be able to handle the big temperature changes: from the warm wrist to the freezig cold air, then into the ice water and after that back again to the wrist under my warm winter jacket. But the U1 handled the big challenge perfectly and surprisingly there was no fogging problem at all, eventhough the U1 is not fitted with the U2's dry capsule and argon gas technology! It seems that the excellent viton gaskets made a really good job in keeping any moisture outside the case so far!
On this day, I saw one dive computer and two battery-powered Citizen dive watches fail just because of the low water temperatures. Thus, IMHO nothing beats a good mechanical movement under very harsh conditions! ;-)

So both watches are excellent divers. But when you could only choose one, which one would you choose?? :-S
Well, after prefering the U2 in the beginning, the U1 turned out to be my favorite. The U1's stunning clean and simple dial just won over the cool tech features of the U2. And the U1 tech specs have proven to be far more than I'll ever need. Nevertheless, the U2 might be the better allround tool watch (if I would live in the great white north like Tim, I would definitely stick with the U2...! ;-) ). Decisions, decisions..., but the good thing about it is: no matter what U-model you choose, you can't go wrong! :-D

Cheers,
Beedoo

Finally, I try to attach some pics of my ice diving day (hope it works; it's the first time I try post some pics...).

Hightech meets tradition: my dive computer next to the mechanical U1.


The entrance hole. You don't feel much of the cold trough your divesuit,
but when you put the head underwater it's like a punch in the face! ;-)


The entrance hole from underneath. Some fellow divers are waiting their turn.
 

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Great pics and outstanding to read your opinions and observations Beedoo!
Good to know YOU can hold up to such rough abuse as your watches as well...lol.
Personally I complain when the warm water runs out in my shower.....
 

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Hi, that was an awesome watch review,:-! should be getting one in a few days, and Tragic I could"nt stop laughing after reading your shower comment.:-D take care ,Todd
 

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Beedoo, what an incredible post!! I enjoyed reading your post immensely. Very well put together and very educational. :-! and that second pic of you hanging onto the ice-shelf...that should be put on the front cover of the Sinn catalogue!! The time is clearly visible even from that distance. Simply amazing. Now that's a real-world test!!....a diving watch designed for use in adverse conditions being used in adverse conditions. I appreciate the fact that you tested both the U1 and the U2. Excellent conclusions and I am particularly pleased that the U1 didn't fog. I can also see the visibility advantages with the U1.

You should post this in the divers forum. Jean-Michel and Bruce would love to see this!! as well as the other great guys there!!


Thanks again Beedoo. I really appreciate your efforts and your photos...and am realy glad that you are enjoying your hobby and your watches.


Awesome!!!
 

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So I guess a pic of me in a cold shower (waist up) wearing my U1 wouldn't impress you guys now?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for all the kind replies, guys!

All you U-owners, I was always enjoyed your comments and photos! Keep on enjoying your great watches! And all you future U-owners: you may look foreward to get yours!! It's well worth waiting: the U's are awesome "time machines"!

Also thanks very much Tim for posting the link to this tread over at the dive watch forum; I forgot to post it overthere myself.

Oh and Tragic, the day I was returning from ice diving, I was looking foreward to take a long hot shower. But after just a few seconds, I was running out of hot water...O| So I see your point! :-D
 

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Geez, your test, Tim's test, and gavin's pictures, they should all be made known to Sinn!!!

your picture will take up the front cover of the catalogue, Tim's and Gavin's will take the back.

Crusader, any way we can get Sinn interested in these??
i think they will be, really.

guys, because of tests like yours, i am going to get meself a Sinn U1 as well.
only thing now is i am waiting for my local AD to come back to me on how much will it cost to change those U1 hands to the U2 hands.

but ... i have to admit ... i am not quite sure whether it will look bloody ugly if i do that!!!

guys, any opinions??? please gimme some feedback!!
and anyone who has any photo editing software ... maybe paste the U2 hands onto the U1 and let's have a look??? hahahaha
 

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Phantom said:
Crusader, any way we can get Sinn interested in these??
i think they will be, really.
I think about an angle to get them interested ... they have not taken much interest in the forum previously, but these stories may be well worth another try!

I'll get back to you guys ... give me a day to think it over. :-!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
woodsteel23 said:
Btw, what type of regs do you use for ice diving?
My main reg is an apecs ctx 100 and the octopus is a apecs tx 50.
Both are already a couple of years old, but they were always very reliable in cold water. Almost as "bulletproof" as the U's...! ;-)

Cheers,
Bidu
 

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Beedoo has tested his U...Timothy has tested his U...the only thing being tested at my house is my patience!!!!......waiting for the UX or the U1 from Watchbuys......any month now.......
 

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Oh wow, I use the apeks atx 200 as primary and tx 50 as back up and always wondered how they'd fare under cold conditions.
Did you have to do anything special to the first and second stages to keep them from freezing or do you use them stock?
 

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excellent!:-!


some one who is not a fulltime desk diver!


bbbrrrrr looks darn cold!

kudo's to you and your review. |>
 
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