Watch Alert: Oris Aquis Date Calibre 400 Two-Tone

When Oris released their in-house automatic movement calibre “400” just two years ago, it caused quite some excitement in the mid-price watch sector. It came with very impressive features; 120 hours of power reserve, instantaneous date change, and an antimagnetic escapement. And all this could be had without excessive price increases. At the same time, the did not discontinue their Selitta based watches. They left the choice of the movement with the buyer. If you valued the internal mechanism over just the look and wearability of the watch then you could go for the more expensive in-house to enjoy all the features this movement can deliver. If you just wanted to enjoy that beautiful Oris Aquis aesthetic– by all means go for the Selitta version. Well, now we have another option with the in-house movement, dressed up two-tone versions, kicking things up a notch.

Design & Watch Sepcifications

41.5mm diameter steel case, 18k yellow gold bezel with ceramic insert, sapphire crystal green or blue sunray dial, gold indices & hands, Super Luminova BG W9 inserts, 300m water resistance
Rubber strap or steel bracelet (brushed or polished) with diver’s extension with quick release mechanism, with AR coating, screwed crown guards.

Quite frankly, these watches are basically the same as the rest of its similar size Aquis modes; the only new thing in these watches is the gold bezel, indices and hands. But these small changes make quite a significant difference. Both dial colours, which are already rather vibrant, were already in the collection before this release but the 18k gold bezel with its ceramic insert really pushes luxurious vibe of these watches up quite a bit. Thankfully, it is tastefully done, with no gold on the bracelet not even in the form of coating or capping. It is just steel which makes these two releases as toned down as two tone watches can get.

Movement

In-house Calibre 400, -3/+5 seconds per day, COSC certified, 4 Hz, 120 hours power reserve

James Porter and Son

Compared to the usually used Selitta SW200-1 automatic it’s immediately apparent that Oris went all out on the development of their in-house calibre. Not only does it adhere to tighter accuracy standards than mandated by the chronometer certification from COSC (-3/+5 spd) but it’s also much nicer to look at. People have even spotted the Oris Bear’s face in their case back. Its impressive 120 hours of power reserve is generated from of its twin barrel configuration. Thanks to the silicon escapement the movement is also anti-magnetic, a very welcomed feature for everyone who had suffered from magnetized watches in the past. In the current configuration the movement features central hours, minutes and seconds, a date at 6 and it hacks.

The best bit? It comes with a 10-year warranty and a 10 year recommended service interval. Oris clearly believes in the robustness of this movement. It is a very generous warranty that other watch brands should take note of.

Price and Availability

CHF4,000, regular production

The privilege of wearing a bit of gold on your wrist will set you back about 800 CHF more than the standard steel version, pushing the price of this Oris Aquis Date Calibre 400 41.5mm two tone to 4,000 CHF with the steel bracelet and 3,900 CHF with the rubber strap. This is a very approachable price in my opinion. For comparison, the competing Tudor Black Bay S&G will set you back CHF 750 more, and it has a lower, power reserve, lower water resistance and shorter warranty. It does have a gold capped bracelet though.

Concluding Thoughts

Overall, these two watches from Oris are well designed diver’s watches for watch lovers in the familiar Aquis design. What we have are very solid Swiss made watches with 300m water resistance, an in-house movement with an extensive power reserve, beating chronometer specs and a very long 10 years warranty, all from one of the few truly independent Swiss makers. The price is also extremely approachable for what you are getting. You also get many other small advantages like the quick change bracelet, which makes it easy for me to recommend getting these watches on the bracelet and then add the rubber strap. Swapping them around would be a breeze, and there is nothing is cooler than wearing a bit of gold on rubber from time to time, if you are really getting the watch wet. Also, did I mention going for the green dial? That is my favourite.