Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue
The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue combines robustness and legibility with devilish good looks. Angus Davies appraises this watch which is capable of subaquatic use courtesy of its impressive water resistance of 300 metres.
This detailed review of the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue includes live images, specification and pricing.
My favourite horological genres are chronographs and divers’ watches. These timepieces prove to be very practical and ideal for daily use. The reason I like divers’ watches specifically, is they tend to be robust and highly legible. These traits are not only important for subaquatic use, they are equally valid on dry land.
Sadly, not everything in the garden is rosy. A regrettable consequence of being robust is that some divers’ watches can appear a tad utilitarian. Indeed, their practicality is often at the expense of good looks.
Beneath the waves, a diver’s watch has to endure high pressures. As a result, they are usually round, a shape which is best suited to deep water use. The requirement for impressive water resistance often inhibits creative design and as a result many divers’ watches look the same.
Last year, Bell & Ross launched the BR 03-92 Diver. Unusually for a watch intended for subaquatic use, it was square, setting aside accepted wisdom. The watch was stunning, blending practicality with a high quotient of style. Since its launch it has remained my favourite watch from Bell & Ross. However, my adoration for the BR 03-92 Diver has recently waned as a new model has ensnared my heart.
Launched at Baselworld 2018, the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue shares much in common with its older sibling including its square torso. However, owing to its colour scheme it looks markedly different. As the name of this watch implies, it is delivered in an enchanting shade of blue, a hue which seems befitting for a watch intended for subaquatic use.
White luminous indices encircle the dial. The minute hand and central sweep seconds hand are, once again, presented in white. This is no accident. As a diver descends, visibility diminishes and various colours disappear from view. The last colour to remain visible is white. The most critical functions on the dial are minutes, essential when considering dive times, and a central sweep seconds, a useful indicator that the watch is working. The rationale for Bell & Ross’s choice of hand colour is clear to see.
The hour hand of the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue is presented in a vibrant shade of yellow. Blue and yellow are happy bedfellows, infusing the dial with a high quotient of style.
The circular date aperture, positioned at 4:30, probably has more relevance on terra firma. The white numerals presented on the date disc, stand-out against the blue background, aiding readability.
A flange encircling the dial is adorned with neat, crisp strokes allowing the wearer to easily determine the time. Indeed, a strength of this dial is the way it cohesively communicates with its fortunate owner. Furthermore, whether the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue is in bright sunshine or restricted light, legibility remains excellent.
The square stainless steel case is highly unusual and provides a refreshing alternative to the ubiquitous round case shape. It measures 42mm in diameter and is composed of satin brushed and polished surfaces.
Gracing the right flank of the case is a blue rubber clad crown. Although nestling between two crown protectors, it remains easy to manipulate, while the soupçon of colour enlivens the case appearance.
The bezel features a blue anodised aluminium insert. It fulfils one of the requirements of ISO 6425, courtesy of its unidirectional bezel and graduated scale. A luminous triangular index is located at 12 o’clock. While the bezel is highly functional, its appearance proves incredibly handsome.
Another prerequisite of a diver’s watch relates to water resistance. The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue has a water resistance of 300 metres, surpassing the minimum requirements of ISO 6425. In addition, the watch possesses anti-shock and anti-magnetic properties, both attributes essential for subaquatic use.
Consistent with most divers’ watches, this timepiece has a solid case-back. It is secured with four screws. Interestingly, the case-back is not flat, but features a raised centre section, similar to a podium. However, rest assured, the case shape still proves highly comfortable.
The calibre BR-CAL.302 is an automatic movement.
Owing to the fitment of a solid case-back it was not possible to appraise the finishing of the movement.
Bell & Ross has produced a timepiece which meets the requirements of ISO 6425, a certification for divers’ watches. Legibility, water resistance, a unidirectional bezel and anti-shock protection are the essential qualities of a diver’s watch.
However, let’s be honest, few individuals will use their shiny Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue for subaquatic use. Those adventurous souls who choose to explore below the ocean’s waves will probably use an electronic diver’s computer.
This is not to denigrate the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue. It is sturdy and highly legible, two traits which prove beneficial on dry land. As stated earlier, it is these two qualities which endear me to divers’ watches. However, what makes this timepiece stand out from the horological crowd is its handsome mien. By cleverly sidestepping the utilitarian nature of many divers’ watches, the Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue delivers impressive functionality along with an abundance of style.
- Model: Bell & Ross BR 03-92 Diver Blue
- Case: Stainless steel; diameter 42mm; sapphire crystal to front and solid case-back; water resistant to 30 atm (300 metres)
- Functions: Hours; minutes; central seconds; date
- Movement: Calibre BR-CAL.302; Self-winding movement
- Strap: Blue rubber strap and satin-polished pin buckle
- Price: £2800.00 (RRP as at 26.4.2018)