Red8USA Dive 42 Specifications:

  • 42mm titanium case
  • 13.5mm thick
  • 48mm lug to lug
  • 22mm lug width
  • Sapphire crystal
  • Miyota 8215 automatic movement
  • 200 meters water resistant
  • One piece silicone rubber strap with wave pattern
  • Retail Price $895 USD

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RED8USA is a brand that does not manufacture in the USA, but rather is marketing towards the USA. The purpose behind the brand is to make similar looking models, with slight changes depending on the market, (Japan, Europe,etc). So who is the man behind the brand? That would be Christian Bedat, formerly of Bedat and Co. Christian certainly has the pedigree for the business, his mother was the co-founder for Raymond Weil. Quietly starting RED8 in 2009, they have been rolling it out full force for the past few 2 years.

So we know the owner of the company has the history and pedigree, but how does his new brand and this model in particular, the Dive 42 stack up? If I was going to give it rating on a scale of 1-10, I would give this model a solid 7. I feel this model has a lot to offer in terms of case design and finishing, the way the strap attaches and the wave dial. The case being made of brushed titanium is always a plus in my book, but the movement used, the Miyota 8215 and the choice of a silicon rubber strap at a retail price of $895, is where I feel some upgrades could be done.

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As stated, the case is solid brushed titanium. I was not able to find out the grade of titanium used, but I believe it is Grade 5. If am wrong, I will update. The case design is reminiscent of a sub style diver, but with more curve to the lugs, and as one Instagram user pointed out, has a great profile. The large PVD crown has no crown guards, but this is more of a diver’s style watch than a true diver in my opinion, so they are not needed. The crown is very large and is easily to manipulate to set the time. The bezel insert is aluminum and is dual colored; 0-15 is silver, with the rest of the bezel being a charcoal grey. One thing many might initially notice is the word Dive on the bezel, between 45-60. This is a signature of the RED8USA brand and their bezel models as far as I can see, and is on their other versions of this model, like the Fifty, the Forty, etc. I won’t harp on it here, as I talk about it in the YouTube video. I can say it does not bother me and I do not find it distracting, though I can do without it as well, and would be better to have a traditional bezel. Speaking of a traditional dive bezel, you will notice that the triangle is not lumed. That is where I came to the conclusion that this is more of a dive style, than a true diver, with a bezel that is not so useful in timing and lack of crown guards. Granted, their is a traditional timing chapter ring on the dial, and the numbers are lumed, as you will seen in the lume shots below. Crown guards do not make a watch a dive watch, but they certainly help protect the crown when diving in the ocean.

The RED8USA Dive does have a screw down crown though and a water resistance to 200 meters, so one should have no issues with water activities such as swimming, snorkeling etc.

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The dial is a little busy for a 3 hand diver, but also has some nice features which I will point out. Incorporating the RED “8” into the design, you will see it on the end of the red second hand, and also the 8 in the date wheel is red as well. Some might find that to be gimmicky, but I appreciate fine details like that. Makes me feel that the brand was trying to create something and not just slapping parts and pieces together for no reason. The dial as I said is a wave pattern, which we have seen before in the past on some watches. Personally while I like the silver color of the dial, I think the wave dial would be more subdued with the black dial. Of course that is always personal preference and others might like that this pattern stands out. Another part of the dial that is not exactly my favorite would be the magnifying date cyclops. It is not, nor ever will be my choice to have one on the crystal, but in this case, it does at least magnify the date properly and I can live with it. The fat sword hour and minute hand are fantastic. Partially skeletonized and filled with large amounts of lume paint, they do what they should, make it super easy to read the time at a glance. Small and thin hands belong on a dress watch, not a diver, and these fatter style sword hands, while they may not work on all dive watches, fit the RED8USA Dive very well, in both terms of use and style.

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The wave patterned silicon strap is all one piece and slides through the spring bars in the lugs. You will notice that the spring bars have a collar on them, this is to give them strength and reduces pressure on the spring bars themselves. The silicon strap is comfortable and has a great dual tang buckle, but because of its composition it is prone to catching every bit of dirt, lint, dry skin etc on it, making it not look so pretty if you are not constantly wiping it down with a wet cloth.

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Sliding the strap out will reveal an engraved caseback, which sports a downsized version of the US flag. The caseback is solid titanium as well, which is good for people who have steel or nickel allergies. To me, the most important and revealing section of the caseback is where it states, “Produced in Asia”. There are many brands that are USA based and manufacture in Asia these days. Many, many brands. Even some brands that are Swiss and use Asia for manufacturing. But NONE stamp it anywhere on the watch, like RED8USA did here. The reality is, Asia, and more specifically Hong Kong is a big player in the watch world these days, and the transparency shown here by RED8USA is refreshing.

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When it comes to lume, RED8USA did a great job. I don’t need to type a lot to convey the great, or not so great, luminescence. The pictures show the proof. It is either great, good, or sub-par and pics do not lie. The lume application used here is great, and it glows for a good few hours without issue.

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While I might not like that the strap catches the dirt and lint, I have to say because of the way the silicon strap attaches to the case and because it is thin, the RED8USA Dive feels fantastic on my 7 ½ in wrist. At 42mm and a lug to lug of less than 50mm, it is a great size and of course lightweight due to it being titanium. In short, it’s a joy to wear.

If you have made it all the ways to the end here, you can see I am having an internal battle with myself. There are many aspects of this watch I love, and some that I can do without or feel can be upgraded. That would bring us to the subject of the movement, and the conclusion of my report. As stated, a Miyota 8215 is what is powering the RED8USA Dive. While a workhorse of a movement, the lack of hand winding and hacking and the fact this movement can be found in watches as little as 150-$200 is somewhat disappointing. Had this been equipped with a Miyota 9015, I would be singing the praises of this watch a lot more.

Overall, I do like the look and feel of the RED8USA Dive, and while priced a little high, it is not your standard looking sub homage that come from other micro brands and there are high quality components being used such as the titanium case and sapphire crystal. If you are one that hunts for the best bang for your buck, this might not be for you. But, if you like the look and design, and want a nice titanium automatic, it is definitely worth a look. This is not what I would label as a fashion watch, and many know that their are quite a few fashion watches in this price range. So while this might not be the greatest value watch, it is another nice option out there in the watch world.

Thank you for reading. You can check out this model and the other color variations at the RED8USA website HERE

I've been an avid watch lover since the age of 7. Watches are not only my hobby but a passion. My favorite style used to be dive watches, but field or non bezel watches have been growing on me. When I'm not reviewing watches I am either cooking or with family and friends.

1 Comment

  1. Well….at $300usd one fine sale from SAKS it was a steal so I grabbed one for shits n giggles. P.S I’m a Breitling fan at the end of the day… 😉

    Reply

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