The 2012 Luminox Deep Dive 500M 1500 Collection (refs. A.1512 & A.1513) is a minor facelift of their 2011 Deep Dive LLT military-style diver, but with a less tactical, more civilian touch to it. Instead of the stealthy black body, the latest version sports a satin-finished steel body and a more traditional rotating bezel that now sports a painted aluminum insert. Still, the watch keeps the signature features of the earlier model with its patent-pending bezel locking system that also acts as a crown protector and sports the same impressive power reserve rating of the whole 50 ATM.
If you compare images of both models, you will notice another difference: the refreshed dial sports a set of Rolex-style hour markers that are (you won’t believe) painted with Superluminova compound. Don’t worry though! The signature LLT tritium tubes are still there installed into the three hands, all 12 indices and the “0” mark on the unidirectional rotating bezel.
Measuring 45 millimeters in diameter, the watch is deliberately thick (although I suppose that the thick sapphire crystal that was designed to withstand the enormous water pressure is at least partly responsible for some of the extra thickness) at just a hair over 17 millimeters. This will probably make it not especially comfortable to wear with formal suits (on the other hand, this is still not a Rolex, and wearing one with business attire wouldn’t be such a great idea after all.) Still, if you plan to use it with a more casual type of dress, it will look alright, especially if complemented by some other deliberately rugged accessories, like heavy boots or a military-style jacket.
Featuring an almost lugless design of its tonneau-shaped body, the watch will fit even a relatively narrow wrist, but I still think that it mainly targets an audience of people who either know a thing or two about bodybuilding or are naturally big.
As usual, the face is extremely busy, but the layout doesn’t hurt the legibility: it still takes just a single glance to grasp the timekeeper’s reading.
Since the watch is rated for an impressive 500 meters of water resistance, it is equipped with a helium escape valve (HEV) that protects the timekeeper’s integrity during fast decompression.
Pricing is still unknown, but I think that MSRP of $2000 will be a good guess*. Not terribly expensive for a watch that sports the well-known ETA 2824-2 self-winding movement (even despite enormous efforts by Sellita and the likes, the good old 2824 series is still a caliber of choice for most second-tier watchmakers who can’t afford to establish their own mechanism manufacturing business) and is as rugged as a nuclear submarine (well, almost.) Now, it would be nice to see one in titanium.
* UPDATE ON PRICE: You will probably not find this collection in brick and mortar stores since the watch has already been discontinued, but online retailers still offer it a price of around $2100, so my guess wasn’t as wild as I expected.
Luminox Deep Dive 500M specification
Price: $2100 (online)
Movement: Automatic, ETA 2824-2, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 25
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Power reserve: 38 hours
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Case: Stainless steel
Size: 45.00 mm
Case height: 17.05 mm
Dial: Black (ref. A.1512) / Blue (ref. A.1513)
Numerals: Arabic (on the rotating bezel)
Hour markers: Luminous, tritium tubes (LLT technology)
Hands: Steel, luminous, tritium tubes (LLT technology)
Water resistance: 500 meters
Strap: Black rubber strap
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective