First revealed earlier this year at Baselworld 2015 trade show, the new Oris Divers Sixty-Five automatic diving watch pays homage a classic model from 1965, although it is absolutely not a reissue (even the choice of movement makes it a different model), the watch makes a very nice impression and will probably be a wonderful choice for a person who wants to buy something “vintage”, but with brand new guts to power it.
I wasn’t able to find pictures of the exact 1965 diver that this new model pays homage to, so I can’t say anything about how faithful this reproduction is. Still, looking at this specimen, I must say that the Swiss watchmaker quite successfully reproduced that cool Sixties vibe using nothing more than a convex crystal, signature hour and minute hands (they did use similarly shaped parts back in 1960s) and nicely styled Arabic numerals that are painted with what they call “Light Old Radium” Superluminova fluorescent compound.
Available either with black NATO textile strap or with a rubber band of the same color, the watch looks very organic and, if you don’t mind, historically correct. Sure, it could possibly look even more natural if the brand opted for a Plexiglas crystal instead of sapphire. However, the choice seems to be a bit more practical since the synthetic material is less prone to scratches.
If it is Tudor that Oris has in its crosshairs, they have surely taken the right caliber to hit the target. Offered at a lot more affordable price, the timekeeper seems to be a lot better choice either than their Pelagos Diver Titanium or Heritage Black Bay models. Although Divers Sixty-Five‘s design is not that iconic as those resurrected by Tudor during the recent years, Oris’ public perception is not plagued by that ‘poor man’s Rolex’ stigma that Tudor still tries to get rid of.
Measuring 40 millimeters in diameter, the new Divers Sixty-Five is just a tad larger than a typical timekeeper of the era. It predictably doesn’t occupy too much space on a normal wrist, but, at the same time, radiates a sort of self-assured presence with its oversized crown, long lugs, and notched bezel that not only provides superior grip, but also looks extremely cool.
Although the watch definitely doesn’t belong to the “ultra-thin” kind, it still looks quite slender thanks to its convex sapphire crystal and cleverly shaped case profile that, like Batman’s or Captain America’s armor make it look muscular, but extremely lean.
To my taste, the crown protrudes longer that I would care to: I tend to wear my watches closer to my palm and these type of crowns often make me feel uncomfortable at certain angles, but you should see for yourself whether you style of wearing a watch will make the part feel awkward or not.
The only thing that I don’t like here is the chosen water resistant rating of just 100 meters, although totally adequate if you never plan to use it for anything beyond occasional swimming or snorkeling, it would be a lot more pleasant to have the rating increased to at least 200 meters just to know that it could be used as a real diving companion.
The self-winding mechanism that powers this new timekeeper is the good old Oris caliber 733. Also known as Sellita SW200, it is basically as reliable and accurate as its main competitor made by ETA.
There is nothing groundbreaking about this engine, which is probably good: what you get is a workhorse, a less expensive alternative to the ubiquitous ETA 2824-2 base mechanism that simply does its job without giving you any sort of headache which usually associated with ‘in-house’ mechanisms manufactured by more obscure brands. Don’t forget to service it at proper intervals, and the movement will reward you with years of hassle-free operation.
The fact that the movement is hidden behind a solid case back cover makes me think that the engine probably comes in its basic decor offering nothing more than the usual branded oscillating weight.
Although it certainly played its part in making the timekeeper so affordable (Oris asks only CHF 1750 for this beautiful model), and I frankly don’t see anything wrong with it, I know that for a number of people this may be a deal breaker.
The dial is what will make this watch sell like hot pancakes. Its beige-toned lume, as well as highly contrast, easy to read both in daylight and in darkness layout, not only make the watch look cool, but also greatly increase its value of a watch that is supposed to be worn on a daily basis.
While I would probably have placed the date aperture at more traditional place between four and five o’clock in order not to cut into the luminous rectangle at 6 hours, otherwise the face of this gadget looks almost perfect.
As a sort of resume of this brief review, I think it needs to be reiterated that this is a very nice alternative not only to the recent batch of vintage-styled Tudor watches, but also to the modern Oris timekeepers. Compared to their thick, bulky cases that often take just way too much space on your wrist dominating the view, this compact little beast will always know its place and will only show its friendly face when you feel like it. Make sure to check this one, something tells me that you won’t be disappointed with this little gadget.
See also: Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Automatic
WWR preliminary verdict
Build quality: 5/5
Value for money: 5/5
Oris Divers Sixty-Five Automatic watch specification
Price: CHF 1750
Movement: Automatic, Oris caliber 733 (base Sellita SW200), Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 26
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 38 hours
Movement decoration: No data
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Case material: Stainless steel
Bezel material: Matches case, black aluminum inlay with luminous dot at 12 hours
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Round
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 40.00 mm
Case height: No data
Lug width: 20.00 mm
Numerals: Arabic, luminous
Hour markers: “Light Old Radium” SuperLuminova, luminous
Hands: Luminous, nickel
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Black NATO textile strap with steel folding clasp / Black rubber strap with a steel buckle
Case back: Solid, engraved