You don’t need to be a scuba diver to wear a dive watch. Nowadays, people use it as an everyday watch because of its great qualities, including durability, excellent water resistance, and enhanced readability. In this article, we’ll briefly discuss what 39mm dive watches are and our top picks for this watch category.
What Is a 39mm Dive Watch?
Like what its name suggests, a dive watch is designed to keep track of time underwater. It has a minimum water-resistance rating of 10 atm (atmospheres) or 100 meters (330 feet). Most conventional scuba divers don’t usually dive that deep, but dive watches have that level of resistance to water pressure to ensure they stay safe as you go deeper underwater.
The size of the case is usually measured in millimeters (mm). Therefore, 39mm just refers to the case size of a dive watch.
The case size is one of the most important features of a watch that you need to consider. It determines the right watch size for you based on your wrist size.
The most common case size for men generally falls between 38mm and 46mm. Anything that’s less than 38mm is considered designed for women. If your wrist measures anywhere between 17 and 19 centimeters (cm), choose a dive watch with a case diameter ranging from 38mm to 42 mm.
Aside from the diameter of the case, you also need to take a closer look at the following:
- Case material and thickness (directly proportional to the case diameter)
- Strap size and material
- Movement type (automatic, mechanical, or quartz)
- Indices (markings that stand for the time)
Now, let’s talk about six of the best 39mm dive watches on the market today.
The Best 39mm Dive Watches
Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight
The Black Bay Fifty-Eight, also called the BB58 and Tudor Black Bay 58, is probably Tudor’s most popular dive watch today. Since not everyone is fond of its predecessor’s (the Black Bay) large and thick case, Tudor made sure they’ll make the necessary improvements with the BB58 by using a steel case that’s 39mm in diameter and 11.9 inches in thickness.
Staying true to its vintage styling, this self-winding dive watch is available in a riveted steel bracelet with a folding clasp. The 39mm steel case has a unidirectional rotating bezel, black dial, and domed sapphire crystal (for enhanced pressure resistance). It’s waterproof up to 200 meters (660 feet).
Powered by Tudor’s Manufacture Calibre MT5402, the Black Bay 58 is COSC certified. That means it has a mean accuracy of -4/+6 seconds daily. So, it’s 1 minute ahead of the current time every 10 days and 1 minute behind the current time every 15 days. It has a power reserve of around 70 hours.
Trivia: The “Fifty-Eight” in the Black Bay Fifty-Eight is named after Tudor’s Oyster Prince Submariner 7924, which they launched in 1958.
Tudor Pelagos 39
The hardcore Tudor Pelagos 39 is touted as the modern version of Tudor’s Submariner watches. Like the Black Bay Fifty-Eight, the predecessors of Pelagos 39 were slightly too big and thick for everyone’s liking. This is one of the reasons people prefer this latest model because of its slightly smaller and thinner case, which measures 39mm wide and 11.8mm thick.
The bezel, bracelet (which is available in two designs), and case are made from grade 2 titanium. This material is extremely light and resistant to corrosion.
The Pelagos 39 is powered by the Manufacture Calibre MT5400, which has 27 jewels for a smooth self-winding and a 4Hz beat rate (28,800 vibrations per hour) for dependable and precise timekeeping. In addition, the movement has a non-magnetic silicon balance spring for greater accuracy.
The movement of this dive watch is automatic and has a power reserve of approximately 70 hours. It’s a COSC-certified chronometer.
Despite being relatively new in the industry, Baltic managed to become one of the most sought-after small-scale brands today. Named after bathyscaphe, a self-propelled, deep-sea vehicle, Baltic’s Aquascaphe dive watch collection perfectly combines functionality and timeless aesthetic.
The Aquascaphe is available in five variations: Blue Gilt, Black Cream, Black Silver, White, and Steel Bezel SB01. Regardless which one you prefer, these five retain almost the same technical features: a 39mm, stainless-steel 316L case, a double-domed sapphire glass, the Miyota 9039 automatic movement, a unidirectional bezel, and a 200-meter water resistance, among others.
The Aquascaphe Steel Bezel SB01 features a new set of larger hands, the “maxi hands,” so it’s easy to read the time under any condition. And instead of a 60-click bezel, it has a 120-click bezel to give you better control of your dive time.
The Longines Hydroconquest comes in different variations, all of which feature a clean and easy-to-read dial. The 6, 9, and 12 hours are oversized Arabic numbers, with the date displayed at 3 o’clock. They also have the Swiss Super-LumiNova, which can glow for hours.
The stainless-steel case measures 39mm by 11.9mm (diameter x thickness). Like most dive watches on this list, it has a unidirectional rotating bezel that encloses a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with an underside anti-reflective coating. It has a water resistance rating of around 300 meters, making it a suitable option for people who are into high-impact water sports.
If you want to shave off a few dollars, the quartz version is the right choice for you. But if you like the automatic, the accuracy of its L888 movement will surely impress you. It has a reserved power of up to 3 days.
Released in 2021, the Serica 5303 is the brand’s first dive watch. It clearly didn’t disappoint. Everything about it is meticulously designed, from the bracelet down to the packaging box.
One of the highlights of the 5303 is its movement, the 22-jewel Soprod Newton movement. It’s the first watch to use this kind of movement, which comes with a 28,800 vibrations per hour (a standard feature in top-notch modern watches) and a power reserve of 44 hours.
While it can be an everyday watch, the 5303 is first and foremost for underwater usage. Serica designed it to withstand water pressure up to 300 meters (approximately 1,000 feet). It has a graduated luminous rotating bezel that can monitor your activity for 60 minutes max.
Yema Superman Heritage
Yema updated their beloved 1st generation Superman from the ‘70s. The latest Yema Superman Heritage still has the original characteristics of its predecessor, like its unique bezel-locking mechanism and iconic shovel-shaped seconds hand.
Since it’s a recreation of the original, expect some well-designed modifications. For instance, Yema modified the 39mm steel case using 3D to fit in the workhorse Ronda 515 quartz movement, which is considered to be consistent and dependable. In addition, the Yema Superman Heritage is designed to stay intact up to 660 feet (around 201 meters) underwater.