The German brand LACO (aka Lacher & Co.: a watchmaking specialist that is mostly associated with pilot’s and deck watches inspired by WWII-era historic models, but also has several modern “tools” in its product range) has recently introduced its new Laco Squad 1000 meter (Ref. 861704) automatic diver.
Although it is not exactly the best time of the year to shop for a diving watch (at least, not in the Northern hemisphere if you don’t plan to travel down under for a week of exploring coral reefs and sunken battleships in the Pacific ocean) the new German timepiece still deserves some attention. After all, the watch is not particularly affordable given the shape the economy is right now, and it may be a good idea to start saving cash right now, but you need to set a realist target first, right?
At the time of me writing this review, the Laco Squad is available in only two versions: one in a black PVD case (Ref. 861703) and the other in a plain satin-finished stainless steel (Ref. 861704.)
If you are not a combat diver and simply shop for an affordable “tool” with a serious water resistance rating, then the Ref. 861704 is, perhaps, the best for you. Not only in terms of versatility but durability as well: it is inevitable that the model in a PVD-treated case will get its fair share of scratches and it will happen, probably, sooner than later. Well, I hope they will introduce a DLC-treated version of the Squad somewhere down the road (although one in “carbon black” hardened steel may be an even more interesting proposition.)
If you are into serious diving, you probably already have a decent diving computer for your right wrist, but it is still pleasant to know that the Laco Squad 1000M is powered by a robust and reliable ETA 2824-2 automatic movement.
By the way, the movement is encased in an antimagnetic cage, a useful feature, which is not common in this price range.
The self-winding engine is covered inside a 45 mm case that comes equipped with a helium escape valve, which is located at 4 o’clock.
The oversized setting crown has been transferred from the standard place at 3 o’clock to a more unusual position between 9 and 10 o’clock.
The matt black dial features raised indexes and eight Arabic numerals, all of them covered with C3 Superluminova.
The hands are also covered with the same luminescent substance with the minute hand featuring orange Superluminova, which is not only a nice touch but also a serious bump in legibility.
Designed by the standards of the German Bundeswehr, the Laco Squad 1000M is surely one of the best divers that you can get in a sub-€2000 range.
See also: UTS Adventure GMT Diver
Laco Squad 1000 Meter (Ref. 861704) specification
Price: €1748 (MSRP, €1798 for a PVD version)
Movement: Caliber ETA 2824-2, automatic, 28,800 vph, Swiss Made
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Power reserve: 42 hours
Case: Stainless steel
Size: 45.00 mm
Hands: Steel, luminous (Superluminova C3)
Water resistance: 1000 meters
Strap: Rubber with a stainless steel buckle. Screwed lugs
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective