Watch Review: Squale 50 ATMOS - Watch Freeks


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Old 11-16-2012, 02:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Reviewer: Mike W aka UKWolfeman

Watch Donated for Review

Watch Being Reviewed: 50 ATMOS¬*- 1521 - 026 PVD

Company Website: http://www.squale.ch/

Company Address:

Squale s.r.l
via S. Maria Valle, 4 20123 - Milano (MI)

Phone: +39 02863887
Email:¬* [email protected]
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DivingWatches?ref=ts&fref=ts

History/About (Direct from website):¬* "The great Swiss tradition of precision watchmaking, combined with a love of the sea and diving, were the two factors that led C. Von B√ľren to work exclusively on the construction of professional divers‚Äô watches from the early ‚Äė50s.

Initially the "Squale" mark appeared on the cases of Swiss watches of various makes, as a sign of fine production and a quality symbol.¬* Then, in the '60s, Von B√ľren started to produce watches that also had the Squale mark on their dials, starting the brand‚Äôs institutional and commercial history.

The first sporting successes, such as the world diving title won in¬* Cuba in '68, were linked to the names of products that had become as legendary as the medium, Master 50 atm. The '70s saw the birth of the first "1000 metre" watch with glass on flexible mounting and snap-on lunette which could be turned in both directions.Squale continued to produce for other brands and started to supply the elite corps of a large number of armed forces, including the parachutists of Italy‚Äôs Folgore Brigade and the Italian Navy‚Äôs Diving Corps.All this has made Squale synonymous with quality and the benchmark brand for divers‚Äô watches internationally, a status it has enjoyed for several decades."

Specifications:

Sub 500 meters
Eta Swiss 2824-2 self-winding movement
Power Reserve¬*38 - 40 Hours
316L Steel case PVD
Case diameter 42 mm
Screw-down caseback, acid etched
Screw-down Crown signed with "VON" logo
60 clicks Bezel
Flat Sapphire crystal
Swiss Made
Squale Box and Papers included
Weight: 5.7oz/162 grams
Consumer Cost: Approximately $830 USD

Stock Photo:



Packaging:¬*¬*The packaging is what I consider standard starting with an outer¬*blue cardboard box with the¬*Squale name and¬*logo¬*printed on the lid.¬* Inside the outer cardboard box is a blue leather case also with the¬*Squale name and logo printed on the lid. The inside of the¬*case is nicely padded and protects the watch well. The underside of the lid is also has logo and brand name printed on it..¬* The watch comparment is a removable tray and the warranty card is stored underneath.¬*¬*The presentation overall I consider decent but not extraordinary in any way as it should be, not overstated.







Case (Crown Side):¬* This view provides for an excellent perspective of the "von B√ľren" case.¬* I am really impressed with the case overall as the¬*design has a real retro/vintage style appearance.¬* The case just isn't seen every day or catalog product off the shelf which is always refreshing. The case measures 42mm and slightly over 44mm including the crown.

The 5.5mm signed screw down crown glides when engaging and zero play or wiggle.¬* The crown is signed with the Squale von Buren "Von"¬*logo paying respect to the founder of the Squale brand.¬*¬*The aspect I really like about the crown is that it is recessed into the case eliminating the need for crown guards.¬* Even though the crown is recessed unscrewing is still rather easy as the crown is coin edged. The PVD finish is very even throughout and seems to be well applied case and crown alike.

I had heard somewhere but can't remember the exact source¬*that the older Squale 50 ATM watches had a "Mod. Depose"¬*marking on the case-back which¬*indicated Registered Model or patented.¬* The designation would mean that in the past every brand that used this case-shape had to have a business agreement with Squale / von B√ľren.¬* Some well known brands seem to have connections with this design such as the Blancpain Fifthy Fathoms Bund and Heuer Spirotechnique.¬* From a historical perspective the case design has some heritage that is for certain.





Case (Non-Crown):¬* This side of the case provides another good view of the PVD finish. Nothing else remarkable of note. The lug to lug measurement is around 49mm. While Squale indicates the case thickness at over 14mm my measurement comes in at around 13mm. The one aspect that I would like to see modified would be drilled spring bar lug holes for easier strap changes to prevent potential scratching to the underside of the lugs.



Bezel, Crystal, Dial and Hands:¬* The bezel is coin edged, 60 click and unidirectional. There is no play in the bezel and each click is quite precise. Grasping the bezel for rotation is also rather easy as the bezel edges extend ever so slightly beyond the case edges. The 60 sec/min bezel insert is the painted metal variety with lume PIP at the 12. I understand the insert used to provide a more vintage appearance but an engraved bezel or insert filled with lume would be stunning and only enhance the overall appearance.

The Atmos is fitted with a sapphire crystal. The dial opening measures approximately 31mm. Beneath the sapphire crystal is a matte black lacquered dial with lume markers applied at the usual positions. The company name and logos are painted on the dial in white above and below center dial.. A white date window with black numerals of appropriate size is positioned at the 3 position on the dial.

The Atmos is fitted with rather typical but appropriate style hands found on many divers. The minute hand is painted orange while the hour and second hands are panted white. The hour and minute hands are filled with Superluminova and the second hand has a section near the tip also filled with Superluminova. The dial is very clean and uncluttered and the use of the Orange minute hand provides some color to the dial area another one of my favorite aspects of this diver.







On the Wrist:¬* Photos are on 7 1/2 - 3/4 inch wrist





Case Back and Movement:¬* The screw down case back is high polished stainless steel¬*and not PVD finished like the case of the watch. I agree with no PVD as the finish would ultimately end up scratched due to servicing when that occurs. The center of the case back is acid etched displaying the company name, logo, series and other various specifications and exactly how a diver case back should be designed in my humble opinion.

As far as the movement is concerned Squale has¬*housed¬*an Elabore Grade¬*ETA 2824-2 automatic movement in the Atmos 50.¬* The movement is also gold plated and according to Squale representatives is manually adjusted at the time of encasing. According to Squale all watches in this series have the identical movement.¬* The ETA movement has been performing flawlessly since¬*arrival with negligible gain or loss of time.¬*



Bracelet/Strap:¬* This particular model for review came with a very nice PVD mesh bracelet which is an upgrade feature from the standard rubber strap. The mesh bracelet is a $116 USD upgrade. The bracelet is 20/20mm and measures around 4mm thick. The clasp is signed with the Squale name and logo. The scissor style clasp is the push button variety and contains (3) three micro adjustments for more precise sizing.

The bracelet is comfortable to wear. As far as size is concerned my wrist as stated preciously is between 7 1/2 - 3/4 inches. I didn't have to remove any links only adjust the clasp to the inner most micro adjustment. My estimate out of the box the bracelet would fit around an 8 inch wrist.

The PVD finish is evenly applied with one minor exception. The bracelet contains sizing segments near the clasp on each side. At certain angles between the segments the stainless steel of the joints can be seen but this is understandable as the segments can rub against each other so PVD would be useless. The unique aspect compared to many mesh bracelets is that the segments are also mesh and assembled with screws rather than friction pins

The only negative is the the screw heads for removing any segment are extremely small so make sure you have the smallest jewelers screwdriver possible for sizing. I recommend using a professional jeweler for sizing to hopefully reduce any damage to the PVD finish of the screw head or surrounding link. Overall one of the best mesh bracelets I can recall seeing.

Also in the photos below I wanted to show how nice an Isofrane Dive Strap looks on the Squale 50 Atmos. Maybe Squale and Isofrane can team up in the future as they are perfect for each other at least with this model. (Isofrane not included)













Lume:¬* Squale uses Superluminova on the hour markers, hands and lume PIP. Due to the color and intensity It appears that C3 is the compound used. While the PIP lume is rather weak the rest of the lume glows rather brightly. The afterglow lasts well into the early morning hours. Very good job overall on the lume by Squale.



Summary: I would like to commend Squale on the Atmos 50. As the consumer you get a a diver with all the necessary bells and whistles such as an Elabore Grade ETA 2824-2, sapphire crystal, screw down crown, 500m resistance, great case finish, very good lume, and a classic appearance. On top of all the quality specifications the Atmos is also SWISS Made which I know many prefer.¬*The only real upgrades if you can really call them¬*upgrades¬*would be a machined bezel or insert filled with lume and drilled spring bar lug holes.

Thanks for reading and as always I look forward to your comments.

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Old 11-30-2012, 05:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Great review Mike and a cool looking watch.
I like it better on the ISO than the mesh though for sure, just seems like it belongs on it.
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Old 11-30-2012, 06:28 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Great review....looks like a very nice watch. However, I've sworn off black PVD so this one is not for me. Thanks for the detailed review.
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Old 11-30-2012, 08:00 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks for the great review!

I love PVD finishes but have yet to put a scratch on any of the 5 or 6 PVD watches I've owned or currently have. Maybe that would change if I dinged one real bad. Been lucky so far!

The only negative I see about this watch is the case back. Either a nicely engraved one like my Orsa or Zodiac, or an exhibition case back that shows off the gold plated elabore ETA would be nice...

Thanks again for the excellent review!
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Old 11-30-2012, 12:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Mi Mike,
Great review and excellent pictures!
:c
Also big thanks for your invested time and effort to make this review possible in the short time given.
I am very pleased with the review, objective and of very high quality. Also the mentioned points for improvement or alterations that could make the watch even more desirable will be taken into account in future products or product updates. Will keep you posted.
Best Regards,
Lennart Buiks
Squale diving watches
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Old 11-30-2012, 02:20 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Great review wolf. Cool looking watch, I like it.
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Old 11-30-2012, 02:45 PM   #7 (permalink)
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First...cool watch
Second...great review & pics

I like this one on the mesh or the Iso. I'm not a big fan of all black watches but there are a couple that just look right that way and this Squale is definitely one of them. Very nice really. Thanks for the intel, Michael!
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Old 11-30-2012, 03:45 PM   #8 (permalink)
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REALLY THOROUGH REVIEW AND GREAT PICTURES, SUPER WATCH.
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Old 11-30-2012, 06:28 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Very nice looking watch!


I love the meshbraceletand the ability to size, despite the small screw heads.


It is quite nice to have a black mesh option!

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Old 11-30-2012, 07:29 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Zenrag wrote:
Quote:
Very nice looking watch!


I love the mesh¬*bracelet¬*and the ability to size, despite the small screw heads.


It is quite nice to have a black mesh option!

I like the look of that mesh a lot. Its got a style that is new to me, anyway (in a good way). I don't know what the issue exactly is but there seems to be a bit too large of a space between the bracelet and the case. Could the holes in the lug ends be a little too far away from the case? I love watches that drill double holes in that area so you can get a more perfect union. Did you have a chance to look at the lug hole placement, Michael? I know, I know...such a picky question.
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:34 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Only one set of lug holes. Actually really no different spacing wise than some others. Might just be the case design throwing it off a bit visually. I don't think you could go much higher on the lugs. Just my opinion.



Mesh Guy wrote:
Quote:
Zenrag wrote:
Quote:
Very nice looking watch!


I love the mesh¬*bracelet¬*and the ability to size, despite the small screw heads.


It is quite nice to have a black mesh option!

I like the look of that mesh a lot. Its got a style that is new to me, anyway (in a good way). I don't know what the issue exactly is but there seems to be a bit too large of a space between the bracelet and the case. Could the holes in the lug ends be a little too far away from the case? I love watches that drill double holes in that area so you can get a more perfect union. Did you have a chance to look at the lug hole placement, Michael? I know, I know...such a picky question.
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:51 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Thanks for the follow-up, Michael. That is good to know. Normal placement is good, too. Some holes are drilled too far away or to high up or to low down that it makes strap mods look strange. I wish that they would all stop that nonsense.
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Old 11-30-2012, 10:12 PM   #13 (permalink)
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great review!!!!! I love the watch and miss mine in fact.
It does perfect on the Isofrane! I personally don't like the look of the mesh at all. Rubber is better on this one for me.
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Old 12-01-2012, 12:29 AM   #14 (permalink)
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I don't know what it is about this beauty but I keep coming back to check the pics out again and again. Verrrrry tempting!
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Old 12-01-2012, 02:20 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Nice , i agree with all said just viewing the pics !
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Old 12-01-2012, 09:56 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Had friend ask about difference in appearance for Elabore and base ETA 2824. Thought it might be helpful.

Top picture similar to what one would see with a base ETA similar not exact. Bottom photo similar to what one would see with Elabore grade ETA similar not exact.. More geneva striping and perlage on the Elabore typically and manually adjusted moreso than a base. Keep in mind the Squale is a gold plated Elabore grade ETA 2824 but do not know how much perlage or geneva striping is present........may be minimal.



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Old 12-01-2012, 11:03 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I too coming back to this post, IO miss my 50 atmos... I need to get another one

beats the heck out of getting a $2000 Auricoste that'll also set you back $200 in "SHIPPING"!!!!!!
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Old 12-01-2012, 01:01 PM   #18 (permalink)
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For those not into PVD the Atmos comes in a SS model as well. Photo credit to Gnomon Watches.
Attached Thumbnails
Watch Review:  Squale 50 ATMOS-image.jpg  
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Old 12-01-2012, 03:30 PM   #19 (permalink)
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That's the one I had
Need another one !! :b
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Old 12-01-2012, 04:31 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Cool watch Mike! I really like that one.
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