UNDONE Aqua Dive Watch – An Affordable, Highly Customisable Automatic Watch for Water Enthusiasts

By rolex
June 4, 2021
7 min read

The fame of microbrands is quickly spreading and remarkable mechanical watches are being sold at relentless costs. A fascinating piece can be had for well under USD 500, yet chances are you’ll be getting a Chinese development and parts that are far taken out from Switzerland. That doesn’t imply that a large number of these watches are awful items, however from both a dependability and collector’s point of view, they’re frequently viewed as a lower level. UNDONE is a mainstream microbrand that stands apart from the group with its customisation alternatives. Shadings, cases, dials, hands, ties and even materials can be separately picked to make a remarkable watch only for you, just for under USD 500. A large number of its watches are alluring chronographs – outfitted with quartz developments rather than mechanical ones. Their Aqua arrangement of dive watches, notwithstanding, have demonstrated Seiko automatics inside and are a phenomenal offer for sprouting aficionados or dynamic divers. Dive watches are among my number one styles and the degree of customisation offered by UNDONE is practically overpowering. Standard releases are additionally accessible in case you’re content with their choice of pre-assembled models. I have their pre-fabricated Aqua Silver-Gray unit (with date) that I’ve been wearing for a few weeks.

Background

UNDONE was established by Michael Young in 2014 with the objective of offering reasonable, customisable watches without discretionary markups. As Young puts it, “All top creator marks were once little, shop in size.” He accepts that extravagance is about items being customized, not just stepped with a brand’s logo. Significant activities are situated in Hong Kong and all get together is completed in-house. Innovative work, and component fabricating are additionally completed inside the office with generally small being reevaluated, like developments and precious stones. And keeping in mind that Hong Kong doesn’t sound as alluring as Switzerland, Germany or France, the commitment to its items and in-house tasks are appreciable.

UNDONE offers two particular watch styles, the Urban/Mystique chronographs with quartz (cross breed) developments and the mechanical Aqua Divers. There are over twelve norm, pre-assembled Aqua models to browse, including military and synergistic styles, yet full customisation takes into consideration an apparently limitless measure of combinations. You can pick a cleaned tempered steel case or from a wide scope of either PVD or Cerakote (polymer-artistic) coatings. The bezel can either be glass or ceramic, there are more than two dozen dial alternatives with or without date, more than 30 hand combinations, etc. The development even takes into account a white or dark date show. My recommendation is to fabricate a few models and afterward pick your general top choice, and don’t be in a surge. However, for the present, we should investigate this silver-dark Aqua diver.

Case and Design

The hardened steel case has a 45mm breadth and is 15mm in stature, which is run of the mill for a diver (if not somewhat thick) and wears less than the width recommends. The crown monitor is braced to the point that it in a real sense takes up the whole right half of the case. The current unit has a cleaned finish on the sides and a brushed top with an unobtrusive chamfer around the top edges.

The unidirectional turning bezel (with a 15-minute nitty gritty scale) is produced using K1 glass with a full covering of Super-LumiNova on the underside, looking like a fluorescent cylinder when gleaming in its somewhat blue green shade. It’s advanced, cool and brilliant, and doesn’t take a lot to make it shine. This arrangement isn’t simply ideal to take a gander at yet in addition effective in jumping conditions.

If there’s a disadvantage to the case, it’s the weight. The Aqua is fabricated like a tank and you feel that on your wrist. The screw-down crown isn’t knurled like the larger part, yet rather a smooth octagon that an attachment wrench could be fitted to. It works with the manly tasteful. The caseback is brushed treated steel and considers a 300m profundity rating. A presentation caseback is additionally accessible however the profundity rating drops to 200m. The gem is sapphire with an enemy of intelligent covering and highlights a cyclops focal point over the date – non-cyclops precious stones are likewise a choice. The general look helps me to remember a vintage environmental jumping suit. It’s thick, weighty and modern, and is simply asking to be lowered in your #1 plunging spot.

Movement

The heart of the Aqua is certainly not a Chinese Seagull or something like that, yet a demonstrated Seiko NH35A type automatic. It has 24 gems, beats at 21,600vph (3Hz), has stun opposition for the equilibrium staff, hacking seconds and a 40-hour power hold. Capacities incorporate hours, minutes, focal seconds and a date.

The 21,600vph recurrence is common for Japanese developments (rather than 28,800vph), however the Seiko NH35A is dependable, useful and moderately modest for microbrands to keep generally speaking costs competitive. Exactness falls inside 20 to 40 seconds of the day, however I discovered my unit to run around 18 seconds quick each day. With the presentation caseback, the development is undecorated yet again fits the modern aesthetic.

Dials and Hands

The dial on my Aqua is matte dim with white lists and numerals (12, 6 and 9) loaded up with Super-LumiNova. The external band of white seconds records doesn’t have lume. A large group of dial combinations can be picked, with various lume tones, date or no date, with or without numerals, and so forth The hour and moment hands are of the Mercedes style (like a Rolex Sub) and plongeur hands are additionally accessible (You can peruse more about the most common watch delivers our Hands of Time  article).

The hours and minutes hands have Super-LumiNova, yet not the focal seconds hand. Everything sparkles in similar somewhat blue green, however various dials and bezels with different lume shadings can be picked. As I said previously, the prospects are endless.

Strap

The tie on mine is a calf-orange Italian cowhide with cream sewing. It has a brushed treated steel clasp with UNDONE’s name and logo stepped. The drag width is 22mm and the lash has brisk delivery switches that are consistently appreciated.

As is the topic with this watch, different lashes are accessible. You can get Cordura texture, Chromexcel calfskin, softened cowhide and elastic, and most outsider ties can be fitted too. Shockingly, UNDONE doesn’t have a steel wristband choice. For generally divers, the elastic or Cordura ties will likely work best.

Conclusion

I as of late reviewed the Farer Endeavor dive watch from another youthful brand that forms their watches in Switzerland with high-grade ETA developments. UNDONE falls somewhere close to Farer and microbrands like Mercer Watch Co. that utilization Chinese Seagull developments. I think the best center ground for microbrands is to go with Japanese developments from Seiko or Miyota, which are demonstrated workhorses, modest and promptly accessible. UNDONE hits this center ground well with Seiko types and reasonable costs. You will not confuse an UNDONE Aqua with an Omega or TAG Heuer, however the quality is great at the cost, customisation is interminable and purchasers are probably going to get many years of solid utilization from one.

The Aqua dive watches start at USD 475 and can move to USD 605 relying upon the setup. Those are reasonable costs for what you’re getting, particularly thinking about the broadness of customisation. You can locate a pre-assembled model or plan your own at UNDONE’s site . They offer a one-year guarantee on developments and 14-day return window.