Victorinox Inox Pro Diver Review – A distinctive diving watch you won’t be afraid to wear with a suit

It is rare to see a diving watch incorporate clean visuals into an otherwise sporty utilitarian design so well that it becomes a viable everyday wearer, but this is precisely what Victorinox Swiss Army accomplished with their Inox Professional Diver line of watches. Translating the design of the classic Inox collection into a rugged build, the Pro Diver adds various features to distinguish the range as a viable alternative to the traditional line, doubling as a useful tool for those who use the full extent of the product’s features. You need to only appreciate athletic-inspired watches to instantly take a liking to the Victorinox Pro Diver, and its availability in various colors and different straps ensures buyers have a selection of choices to better suit their visual taste. I recently grabbed a reference model 241734 in the navy blue dial with a matching rubber strap, which not only contrast nicely with the stainless steel case, but also offer an excellent match to any dark outfit. A durable Swiss quartz movement within further positions the watch to be suited for any outdoor or work activity, and the fairly reasonable ownership price makes the Inox Pro Diver one of the most attractive watches you won’t be afraid to put under pressure of everyday use. If you’re not chasing after durability, however, the combination of stylish looks and comfortable wear ensure the features of the entire Inox range remain appealing to younger buyers like myself.

The Pro Diver range has been built from the brand’s extensive Inox collection, translating reserved and elegant visuals into a design language commonly associated with diving watches. In particular, Victorinox drew inspiration from diving timepieces such as the Rolex Daytona and the Bulova Devil Diver to deliver solid competition among entry-level Swiss-made watches. No matter which color combination you go with, the heavy-duty stainless steel case looks ready to withstand the abuse of everyday wear, and comes with a transparent plastic bumper for added protection. The accessory isn’t of much use in situations besides diving ultimately, as its basic looks and dial magnifications take away the elegance of the product’s design. Within the main Pro Diver line (Victorinox also sells the Inox Pro Diver in 4 color options with a titanium case) are 8 reference models in total, with 4 colorways available with either a matching rubber strap or a stainless steel bracelet.  The models are easily distinguishable, with the yellow and red offering a matching style for the summer outdoors, navy blue and black being the more reserved options of the strap, and stainless steel variants can be considered as the dressier options. It ultimately comes down to personal tastes, and I personally prefer the versatility of the navy blue Inox Pro Diver as it goes along well with most casual outfits.

To briefly mention the packaging, it is one of the nicest watch boxes you’re going to get out of the $600-timepiece range, although doesn’t contain any fancy accessories apart from a thick manual and a plastic bumper encasement. The Victorinox Inox Pro Diver can really be considered an entry into the vast and diverse world of Swiss watchmaking, delivering expected features and reliability that the industry is best known for to attract younger budget-conscious buyers. At the same time, this isn’t a watch you’d be afraid to get banged up throughout daily use, making for one of the best-designed “beater” watches you can currently get on the market. It still isn’t cheap and requires care to make it last the fully designed product cycle, but the Inox Pro Diver has been specifically designed to withstand the pressure of 130 Swiss homologation tests. Add in 200m water of resistance, and this is also a wrist piece you can take virtually anywhere, proving its capacity as a daily driver despite focus on diving-specific design elements.

In a watch aimed directly at professional divers, there are surprisingly many reserved style elements to be found in the Inox Pro Diver that make it as much of an appealing dressy option as it offers an excellent sporty design. This comes in part through lack of significant deviation in design language from the main Inox line of watches by Victorinox, which replaces traditional hour markers with round indents across the dial and features a rotating bezel that’s become the main feature of all diving watches. The brand logo at 12 o’clock remains, and the heavy-duty case itself is still water-resistant for 200m and contains a screw-down crown at the 3 o’clock position. Victorinox didn’t opt to increase the depth rating for the Pro Diver either, which allowed the product to retain the average price of the Inox line and ultimately isn’t a deal breaker. With regards to the reference 241734, the navy blue contrasts especially nicely with the bright white of the hour and minute hands, as well as the hour indices, making the watch easily readable under most light conditions. What particularly grabs attention is the slim seconds hand painted in bright red, which stands out from both the deep blue of the dial and the white of remaining components. To further note, this also matches well with the stainless steel of the case, providing a sleek and overall expressive look despite the reserved color combination. A rather small date window between 4 and 5 o’clock will ultimately not be to everyone’s liking, but I generally appreciate such feature in my analog watches during everyday use.

There are many finer details to be found in the Victorinox Inox Pro Diver if one were to look closely at the dial, with hours displayed in military time along the outer rim, but it is the comfortable wear that would be of major concern to potential buyers. While I cannot speak for the stainless steel bracelet and how it fares in everyday use, the rubber strap proved surprisingly capable over long periods of wear. The adjustable strap provides fit for many wrist sizes and considerably obscures the watch’s noticeable presence on the wrist, as the Inox Pro Diver measures in at 45 mm case width and 0.6 inches in height. I find rubber straps to generally provide excellent fit throughout daily use, although recommending it to the stainless steel strap is entirely dependent on user preference. The strap is further designed to go over a diving suit, with grooves on either side of the lugs to provide a secure fit in diving conditions, but nonetheless most importantly provides comfortable wear throughout everyday use. At times, the Inox Pro Diver’s presence can be forgotten about if you wear it extensively, which says a lot about a diving watch that weighs almost half a pound.

Inside the Inox Pro Diver is a Swiss Ronda ISO 6425-certified quartz movement able to withstand 130 homologation tests according to Victorinox, and endures further durability on top of an already impressive package. Movement-wise, the certification serves to distinguish the Pro Diver range from the regular Inox counterpart despite no difference in depth rating, but it is the rotating bezel that affirms the purpose of this timepiece. Victorinox could have easily included a mechanical movement in the Inox Pro Diver if they wanted to, but its utilitarian-driven purpose works best with a quartz movement where you won’t be afraid to accidentally break it. While this doesn’t add any future value to the watch, the end product’s price range serves as an entry into high-end Swiss quartz watches, as well as mechanical timepieces further on. Over the dial sits an AR-coated sapphire crystal with a rotating bezel around it, whereas a stainless steel screw-in case back provides excellent protection against the elements.

So who exactly is this watch best suited for? The diversity of the model range provides many distinct possibilities, although the general design language in my opinion best speaks to younger buyers. As part of the target group myself, I appreciate a lot of design elements expressed in the Victorinox Inox Pro Diver, and its ability to blend in with most casual outfits. Pick a darker dial with either a matching strap or a stainless steel bracelet, and the watch perfectly goes along with a suit or dress clothes. The brighter yellow on the other hand will provide an expressive look during the summer season, offering a way to stand out among surrounding people. Younger individuals who can still appreciate analog wrist watches as reserved and durable fashion pieces will find a lot to like in the Pro Diver range, and the Inox collection in general. The watch’s durability further ensures it can be worn every day with no fear of damaging either its visuals or the movement within. As someone who wears a wrist watch every day, this is easily the most important factor for consideration during a purchase, and the Victorinox Pro Diver easily proves the durability of its build.

The Inox Pro Diver offers design versatility and durable build to appeal to a younger buyer base and capture a large share of the accessory market. Victorinox succeeded in distinguishing the Pro Diver range just enough to offer a viable sporty alternative that still shows a reserved design to blend with an extensive array of clothing styles. As a daily driver, the watch performs outstandingly at delivering a solid entry price point into the high-end Swiss watch market, viable to introduce a newer user base to an extensive range of fashionable quality timepieces. The durable image behind the Victorinox brand is further expressed in the high-end quartz movement and heavy-duty case construction, which help ensure the image of the Inox Pro Diver as a high-quality fashionable timepiece. As I’ve already mentioned, the darker dial models are most versatile, offering a mixture of sporty looks and reserved design style, and offer most practicality in everyday use that prospective buyers will appreciate. With that said, the entire model range, including a newer set of colors in titanium cases, offer a distinct and expressive design to produce a fashionable product. The Inox Pro Diver is an excellent diving watch for the money, and shouldn’t be dismissed for either its utilitarian looks or the quartz movement within, as its excellent price point offers a lot of value for prospective younger buyers.

Pros:

  • A larger, sportier-looking variant of the traditional Inox product range
  • Offers a lot of design versatility through four distinct color variants available with a matching rubber strap or stainless steel bracelet
  • Strong durability, great value for the money

Cons:

  • Features a quartz movement rather than stepping a grade up for mechanical
  • Hefty presence on the wrist

Available at retailers: Hudson’s Bay, Jomashop, Amazon, Victorinox Swiss Army

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