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Which microbrand diver do you like best?

  • Halios Fairwind Bathyal Blue (w/ blue bezel)

    Votes: 16 11.3%
  • Serica 5303-1

    Votes: 30 21.3%
  • Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 600

    Votes: 21 14.9%
  • Other

    Votes: 74 52.5%
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Looking to add a new diver into my collection, and currently considering microbrands under $1500. The top 3 I've found that fit my style/interests the best so far are:

  1. Halios Fairwind Bathyal Blue (w/ blue bezel)
  2. Serica 5303-1
  3. Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 600 (Black)
Honorable mention goes to C65 Dartmouth, Baltic Aquascaphe (Black/cream), and Lorier (Hydra, Neptune, or Hyperion).

I know these are a bit all over the place, but open to finding others with similar specs that I might've missed. Preference goes to swiss/automatic movements.

So with that said, what are your favorite brands/models?
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It depends on your needs and tastes. The CW is likely to be the most robust and beefy of the bunch. It’s also pretty damned sparkly. Lots of polish.

The others listed are skindivers. I prefer the skindiver style or the overtly toolish style to a big, thick, shiny dive watch.
 

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I chose the Serica (mine's on order). Not a fan of the Fairwind case shape (there is a new Fairwind coming later this year though). I find the C60 Trident series to be so bland, but I do really like CW's new Aquataine series, especially the black dial GMT model. The lumed sapphire bezel is just so sweet. The 22mm lug width was a major turn-off for me. Stepping up in price I would definitely consider the Monta Oceanking but it's a bit too large for my wrist.

I'll add this about the Serica: many of the design choices are divisive. But I think they're all really intentional, and it's a watch clearly designed by one person following their interests and ideas. At the time I ordered the Serica I was also considering purchasing the latest Seiko diver SPB317, a watch that feels like it was designed by a room full of people. To some extent the Halios and CW both feel semi-crowdsourced in their design as well, or at least less risky, and I think one of the biggest strengths of the Serica is that its design isn't so concerned with how people will accept it. It just is. That's why I like it, at least.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I chose the Serica (mine's on order). Not a fan of the Fairwind case shape (there is a new Fairwind coming later this year though). I find the C60 Trident series to be so bland, but I do really like CW's new Aquataine series, especially the black dial GMT model. The lumed sapphire bezel is just so sweet. The 22mm lug width was a major turn-off for me. Stepping up in price I would definitely consider the Monta Oceanking but it's a bit too large for my wrist.
Yeah I’m having a hard time deciding whether to wait for the new Fairwind vs pulling the trigger on the Serica right now. I’ve always loved CW’s but I agree, they are pretty vanilla outside of the trident seconds hand. I was looking at a green Aquitaine as well, definitely very nice.
 

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It depends on your needs and tastes. The CW is likely to be the most robust and beefy of the bunch. It’s also pretty damned sparkly. Lots of polish.

The others listed are skindivers. I prefer the skindiver style or the overtly toolish style to a big, thick, shiny dive watch.
I think I disagree with your assessment of the C60. Its bracelet is 100% brushed, and its case is more brushed than polished. And are you implying it is big and thick? It's available in 38, 40, and 42mm case sizes (all totally reasonable), and the two smaller sizes have an advertised thickness of <13mm (not far off from the other divers in the survey).
 

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Never handled one, but I gotta go with the Scurfa Treasure Seeker. Offered in 6 different colors. I would have purchased one if my wrist were larger.
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I think I disagree with your assessment of the C60. Its bracelet is 100% brushed, and its case is more brushed than polished. And are you implying it is big and thick? It's available in 38, 40, and 42mm case sizes (all totally reasonable), and the two smaller sizes have an advertised thickness of <13mm (not far off from the other divers in the survey).
They literally named the case design “light catcher.” Dials are glossy with polished, faceted indices.

Thank you for sharing your opinion. It’s wrong, of course but we all deserve a voice. 😉
 

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Honestly, all 3 are awesome choices and you can't go wrong. Really depends on the style you are going for and what else is in your collection. The serica design is cool (especially the bezel) but too much negative space, especially in the top half of the dial. The Halios is great, especially the bracelet, but the color choices missed the mark on the original version. The CW is a safe but really well executed watch and probably the best do-it-all option of the 3 mentioned.

I'd also be eyeing a Vero Open Water which has a really striking and modern design and a case shape that wears really well. Also love the entirely blasted finish. Lastly, the Formex Reef which IMO is the best sub-$5k diver option on the market although the design isn't for everyone.

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