Oris Aquis Date
The Oris Aquis Date was updated in 2017. Now, the watch brand from Hölstein has unveiled a new version of the watch, sporting an eye-catching green dial coupled with the company’s legendary robustness and value.
This detailed review of the Oris Aquis Date Ref. 01 733 7730 4157-07 8 24 05PEB includes live images, specification details and pricing.
Oris has always been renown for keenly priced, quality watches. The company’s models do not masquerade as the last word in haute horlogerie, the brand’s keen pricing precludes this. However, Oris watches are honest, reliable and robust; traits that will resonate with most would-be buyers.
Over the years, the brand from Hölstein has gained a reputation for its divers’ watches. This is a horological genre where rugged construction and lucidity are essential prerequisites. Oris produced its first diver’s watch in the 1960s. Thereafter, in the late 1990s, the company unveiled the Full Steel, a watch which laid down the foundations for the brand’s legendary Aquis collection.
The Aquis was released in 2011. Its legible display, generous proportions and tactile bezel and crown immediately won praise from the world’s watch press. A feature of the Aquis was that it offered practicality and impressive water resistance, making it ideal for active wearers, including those individuals wishing to use their diver’s watch in anger.
However, where Oris was particularly shrewd was in recognising that most divers’ watches seldom venture into water and are often chosen for aesthetic reasons. While the Oris Aquis is capable of subaquatic use, it also looks at home on dry land, paired with casual or formal attire.
In 2017, the Swiss firm revisited the Aquis. The bracelet and horns assumed a new, thinner aesthetic. The hands and indices became bolder, augmenting legibility, and the crown and neighbouring protectors were slightly reworked. The resultant appearance was a neater and sharper timepiece.
Throughout its life, the Oris Aquis collection has grown, leading to an extensive range of models. Recently, the Swiss brand unveiled the Oris Aquis Date with a new bewitching green dial.
I was drawn to this version of the Oris Aquis Date primarily because of the green dial. This verdant shade is not widely employed within the watch industry, conferring a high degree of individuality. I can remember some years ago, seeing just a handful of blue dials and wondering whether they would be a passing trend. Today, blue dials are commonplace and have become a staple of the watchmaking industry. It will be interesting to see whether green dials follow suit.
The silver-toned hour and minute hands are bold and lined with white luminescent fill. The central sweep seconds hand features a luminescent lollipop, aiding readability. Despite its modest asking price of £1520 (RRP as at 22.10.2018), Oris has infused the dial with several becoming details.
The hours are denoted with silver-toned, applied indices which sit proud of the dial surface, granting a sublime depth to the dial’s surface. The luminescent treatment of the hands and indices yield a blue emission in dim light. Positioned between each index are crisp white strokes, making for easy read-off of minutes and seconds.
A date display is positioned above 6 o’clock, is presented with contemporary white numerals, san serifs, against a black date disc. The lucidity of this indication is excellent. Some purists may criticise the fact that the colour of the date disc does not match the dial colour. However, having a unique dial disc for this model would have increased costs. In my opinion, Oris was correct in making this minor concession in order to achieve the desired price point.
The dial is adorned with a sunray motif. In direct light, the dial assumes a vibrant character, glinting beautifully and evincing a metallic allure. Conversely, in some light, the dial exhibits an almost black, brooding persona. It is the variegated appearance of the dial and its changeable appearance which enriches the look of the Oris Aquis Date.
In recent times, Oris has recognised that some prospective purchasers of the Aquis may prefer a smaller case size, releasing a 39.5mm option. Personally, I favour the generous proportions of its 43.5mm case, however, Oris should be applauded for providing would-be wearers with greater choice. The green dial is currently only available with the larger case, however, I suspect if this reference proves popular then Oris might rethink its position.
The Oris Aquis Date is offered with a choice of leather or rubber strap or stainless steel bracelet. Only the latter two options lend themselves to subaquatic use. The press model I wore featured a stainless steel bracelet. The bracelet is a 3-row design and has a security folding clasp with extension. Appraising the bracelet with a discriminating thumb revealed no sharpness, the links felt substantial and there was a ubiquitous sense of quality.
Oris has equipped this timepiece with a unidirectional bezel incorporating a ceramic insert. It is wonderful to see this specification detail, once the preserve of costlier timepieces, appearing on this accessibly priced watch.
The screw-in security crown proves easy to manipulate. It nestles between two crown protectors, mitigating the risk of damage to the winding stem. Oris has been clever when designing the crown protectors, they are functional but do not spoil the aesthetic appearance of the watch. Indeed, they are not too obtrusive while delivering an agreeable masculine mien.
Oris has set aside tradition, choosing to equip the Oris Aquis Date with an exhibition caseback. The Swiss brand has recognised that many potential owners enjoy seeing a movement in all of its naked glory. As a horological voyeur, I appreciate this specification detail.
The Oris 733 is an automatic movement, based on the Sellita SW200-1. The balance has a frequency of 28,800 VpH (4Hz) and the movement contains 26 jewels. The lone barrel provides 38 hours of autonomous operation.
The bold, red oscillating weight dominates the dorsal view of the case. Beyond the view of the ebulliently-hued rotor, the finishing of the bridges and other components is minimal. There is a notable absence of perlage, Côtes de Genève and blued screws. However, this should not dissuade potential purchasers from considering this watch. To expect high-end movement finishing on a watch endowed with the aforementioned qualities and keen price is somewhat unrealistic.
I frequently write about exemplars of haute horlogerie. They represent the pinnacle of watchmaking. Indeed, I never tire of the finissage, complications and métiers d’art, where perfection is absolute and price is inconsequential. However, the esoteric world of tourbillons and minute repeaters is remote from the lives of most individuals.
Since 1904, Oris has recognised that ‘real people’ want ‘real watches’ imbued with great design, palpable quality, robustness, reliability and value. The Oris Aquis Date upholds such qualities. Its dial is simple to read and agreeably detailed.
The case is beautifully resolved. Each bracelet link feels solid and the folding clasp ensures the watch is steadfastly affixed to the wrist. The case is incredibly smooth and the ceramic bezel exhibits a tasteful sheen. Oris has deftly blended utility with style, manifest with the crown protectors on the right flank of the case.
The Oris 733 is Swiss-made and its self-winding characteristic makes it ideal for day-to-day use.
I cannot hide my admiration for this watch. The green hue of the dial delivers individualism and the robustness of the case proffers much practicality. Despite its plethora of attributes, the Oris Aquis Date remains keenly priced. This is a remarkable watch which delivers much for comparatively little.
- Model: Oris Aquis Date
- Reference: 01 733 7730 4157-07 8 24 05PEB
- Case: Stainless steel; diameter 43.5mm; sapphire crystal to front and caseback; water resistant to 30 ATM (300 metres).
- Functions: Hours, minutes, central sweep seconds and date.
- Movement: Calibre Oris 733 (base SW 200-1); automatic movement; frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz); 26 jewels; power reserve = 38 hours
- Strap: Stainless steel bracelet with security folding clasp with extension
- Price: £1,520 (RRP as at 22.10.2018)