Certina DS Action Chrono Quartz / Swiss

With its 42.5mm case machined out of 316L low-carbon stainless steel and a Rolex-like unidirectional rotating bezel, this quartz-powered 2009 Certina DS Action Chrono is available both on a sexy black rubber strap (ref. C013.417.27.057.00, pictured) and a more practical stainless steel bracelet (ref. C013.417.11.057.00.) As affordable as it is, this one looks like a good choice for those not willing to spend tons of money to buy a ‘real’ Submariner, but still not willing to opt-in for an “homage” from smaller brands of dubious origin.

Well, maybe that is also their main problem.

I mean, some people may feel embarrassed if someone not particularly familiar with the watchmaking world, but more or less informed that such models exist, asks them “Is this a Rolex Submariner (or an Omega Seamaster, or Breitling, or an IWC Aquatimer, or Some Other Expensive Automatic Diving Watch) on your wrist?” and they blush and start explaining that no, it is just a Certina (or Seiko, or Invicta, or Some Other Cheap Quartz Diver), but it doesn’t really look like a Rolex.

Certina DS Action Chrono

Because, you know, the hands are different, and the rotating bezel is different, and the date window is in the wrong place, etc. And they don’t pretend to own an expensive watch; they just like the style and don’t give a wooden nickel about those status things. Well, it does sound very embarrassing to me.

But if you are not that easily embarrassed, this is a perfect diving tool for you. It is powered by an accurate and reliable Swiss ETA G10.211 quartz chronograph movement (it also powers the popular Tissot PRC 200, Invicta Subaqua Noma III and the Victorinox Swiss Army Base Camp Chrono quartz wristwatches), which is perfectly sealed from the elements by the DS+ double security system and is water-resistant up to 200 meters. The only drawback of this mechanism is that it comes sealed and can’t be repaired: you will have to pay for a new movement if the original one dies on you, but that sort of comes with the territory when we are dealing with watches in this price range, doesn’t it?

And its scratch-resistant sapphire crystal features anti-glare treatment, which is not such a usual thing in the $500-$600 categories.

Certina DS Action Chrono (dial)

Like a real diver, the DS Action Chrono also offers a legible dial with high-contrast polished steel hands and hour markers perfectly visible on the black dial.

The only thing that bothers me here is the amount of luminous substance covering the hour and minute hands, as well as applied indexes. The thin strips of lume maybe just not bright enough for you to read the time in murky waters.

See also: Argonaut 1000 TQ by CX Swiss Military

WWR Verdict

Originality 2.5/5
Build Quality: 4.5/5
Versatility: 4.5/5
Usability: 4.5/5
Overall Legibility: 4/5
Nighttime Legibility: 4/5
Value for Money: 3/5

Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Photos: Certina

Certina DS Action Chrono specification

Price: $550 (MSRP)
Movement: Caliber ETA G10.211, quartz, 4 jewels, Swiss Made
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph, date
Power reserve: 48 months
Case: Stainless steel
Diameter: 42.50 mm
Dial: Silver or black
Water resistance: 200 meters
Strap: Black rubber or three-row satin-finished steel bracelet with a steel folding clasp and diving extension
Crystal: Sapphire, AR-coated

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  1. herodotos Says: May 5, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    Where can you buy this watch?

  2. Try your nearest authorized dealer.

  3. kim godeloson Says: May 20, 2009 at 2:35 pm

    where can i get this watch?

  4. @ kim godeloson
    same answer: you should probably visit Certina’s authorized dealer in your city.

  5. Just bought this watch and am pretty happy wih this acquisition. The watch looks good and sturdy and attracts attention (glowing red bezel!). I own several watches of top makers (Omega, Longines, Jaeger) but this will certainly be worn unappologetically and proudly.

  6. Nothing to shame about if the Brand that deliver the quality that justified with the price thus in fact put many great Brand in shame because so call “Branded” resulted in inferior or generic movement (not even their own movement but rip consumer money like devil)

  7. Just bought this watch while I was in Switzerland from Harry’s Watch Store I believe. First swiss watch for me, and will not be the last. I will probably say good-bye to Bulova and those companies because they do not compare. I/my girlfriend catches me just staring at my new beautiful Certina all the time. Sometimes I leave my new DS Action at home so i actually listen to what my friends have to say during coffee… Does that mean i’m a bad person..or i just have really good taste in time pieces???

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