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The temptation to buy a cheap watch that actually looks many times pricier is difficult to suppress. Why would you have to pay fortunes if you could have a similar-looking piece for a fraction of the price?
The vast majority of you think the same way. And that is also presumably the reason you’ve stumbled upon the Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB.
The watch resembles probably the most iconic timepiece ever made – the Rolex Submariner. However, if you compare the price tags, several questions arise regarding this Invicta Pro Diver watch – is it good enough, will it last long enough, and is it worth buying?
The following Invicta Pro Diver review on the 8926OB model sheds some light on the timepiece to clarify whether it’s worth the hassle or not.
If you want to head straight to the best men’s Invicta watches that include several Pro Diver pieces, feel free to do that.
Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB Specs
First off, let’s look at the specifications of the Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB.
Case Size: 40mm
Case Material: stainless steel
Lug to Lug: 48mm
Weight: 155g (5.46oz)
Bracelet: three-link stainless steel
Bezel: coin-edge unidirectional
Crown: screw-down with protectors
Water Resistance: 200m (660ft)
Movement: Seiko NH35A automatic
When looking at the specifications of the watch, the Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB seems to have everything one can wish from an affordable diver. It has a legendary 40mm Submariner case, features a classic 200m water resistance, has the essential features of a screw-down crown and one-way turning bezel, and runs on an automatic caliber.
Also, the aesthetics are top-notch in not trying to ruin the Submariner-like style with gaudy modifications like several others have done – it is a trough and through homage of the famous Rolex watch.
I ordered the Invicta Pro Diver from Amazon, and it cost me a little over $70. The price varies from $60 to $90, depending on discounts and seasonal sales, which places my order swiftly between the price brackets.
Furthermore, the Invicta was packaged in an appealing yellow box containing user manuals and a warranty card, which only but added to my excitement over trying the watch on.
Considering the specifications mentioned above and the looks of the watch, $70 is a real value for money deal. Any other similarly equipped timepiece rarely sells for less than $200. If it does, it usually comes from an unknown Chinese brand that has overwhelmed the watch with tasteless design elements.
So, what will you get from a sub-$100 Invicta Pro Diver? Let’s start with the most obvious, the case.
But not only plays the Submariner case its role but also the classic size that is right at home on a wide range of wrists. It’s neither too large nor too small but a perfect sweet spot.
Its lug to lug distance measures 48mm, which is perfectly fitting for the 40mm case. The lugs are slightly curved and grasp the wrist comfortably.
I have to admit that a 40mm size is a tad too small for my personal taste (my wrist measures 7.3in). I prefer watches that stay anywhere between 42-45mm. Of course, it’s a matter of taste, and mine leans towards the bigger end of the specter. So, ignore my biased opinion here and try out yourself.
When talking of the finishing, the case looks solid. It has polished sides and brushed lug tops. However, one thing that several reviewers and owners despise when it comes to the case is the oversized INVICTA engraved on the left side.
I side them in this regard because it looks out of place and doesn’t contribute to the appeal, not one bit. Luckily, it stays out of sight most of the time and won’t draw much attention anyway.
But what doesn’t stay out of sight and shouldn’t be either is the see-through caseback where the wheel and gear work does its magnificent job. Half a circle-shaped spinning rotor lies partially in front of it and moves when the watch is in motion.
While most Pro Divers come with a yellow rotor, mine arrived in a simple silver-toned version. I don’t mind it, as the yellow version tends to be too flashy and overdone anyway.
When so far, there hasn’t been much to complain about, apart from the excess branding, my first negative of this Invicta watch is right on the way and is to do with the bracelet.
In terms of appearance, it looks good – it has polished center links and brushed outer links that harmonize with the case. Also, it comes with a double security clasp that makes sure the watch won’t fall off the wrist too easily. However, you can hear the bracelet rattling and jingling when handling the watch off-wrist.
Another problem that caught my eye, although a slight one, is the gap between the three links when bending the bracelet. What causes it is the pinhole in the center link that seems to be too wide. The gap is also the very reason contributing to the rattling noise of the bracelet.
On the other hand, the wide center pinhole works out well when resizing the bracelet. I had to remove three links, and the whole process took me no more than two minutes. No broken pins or nerves racked.
Bezel & Dial
The bezel of the Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB turns in one direction with firm clicks and takes some effort to handle it, despite the existence of a coin edge that is supposed to help with the grip.
It’s not a bad thing in itself that it doesn’t turn easily because a dive watch can’t have an easy-to-turn bezel. Besides, most of us won’t be using it frequently anyway, and it serves more of a visual purpose rather than practical. However, I would’ve preferred a somewhat easier operation of the bezel.
Did you know? The OB suffix next to the 8926 stands for Original Bezel, which is the first one they came out with. The other version without the suffix comes with a smoother bezel without the coin-edge design.
Leaving aside this slight disadvantage and moving on to the dial, you’ll find the most eye-catching part of this Invicta Pro Diver. It is pleasantly crowded with quite a lot to be discovered.
The first thing you’ll notice is the sweeping second’s hand that makes six steps in a second and gives a nice gliding motion. Those of you who have worn only quartz watches will definitely find the sweeping motion the best part of an automatic timepiece.
Another eye-catching element on the dial is the date window with a magnifying glass on top of it. It is a welcoming addition as, without the magnifier, the date window would require very sharp eyesight to read out the numbers.
The dark dial is covered with a mineral crystal, which is pretty much the standard in affordable watches. Hoping to get a sapphire instead of a mineral would be too much to ask for the price point.
The handset, as well as the hour dots, are equipped with greenish luminosity. It is one of the most important features of a dive watch when reading the time underwater is of critical importance.
But what took me by surprise was its very weak and short glow, especially in the hour markers.
I compared the Invicta Pro Diver with my Tissot Supersport Chrono – a watch where luminosity is a secondary matter. The outcome is visible in the images below.
I did the first image right after strong light exposure, the other one approximately an hour later, and the third one three hours later. The results were disappointing, to say the least. I would have hoped to get a much better luminosity from a diver than from a casual chronograph.
Then again, I soothed myself with the fact I paid only 70 bucks for the watch. Furthermore, I rarely find myself reading the time in the dark, so for me, the luminosity is not as coveted a feature as for many others.
However, what makes my heart beat faster and what I really appreciate in a watch is the automatic movement. And that’s probably the best bit you’ll get with the Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB.
The watch is equipped with a Seiko NH35 caliber that has found its way to many microbrand automatic watches. It is a caliber that every respectable watch enthusiast knows.
What makes it so popular is the utmost reliability combined with nice features and affordability.
For example, the movement can be hand-wound and hacked. It means you can hand-wind the watch besides the self-winding, and you can also halt the second’s hand.
Why are the features good, you ask?
Oftentimes, automatic watches without the possibility of manual winding won’t get wound entirely and stay half-wound. This, in turn, shortens the power reserve period and results in a watch stopping way before its stated reserve limit (40h, typically). Hacking, on the other hand, enables you to halt the second’s hand for accurate time corrections.
The NH35 caliber is therefore equipped with features that watch enthusiasts appreciate the most. Moreover, it keeps an accurate time as well.
I corrected the time to atomic precision right after receiving the watch using the hacking feature. After a week, it had gained only 8 seconds. And after another week, the deviation was +11 seconds. For an automatic watch, it is a result that every wearer wishes to see.
I’ve been wearing my Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB for several weeks now, and I can’t be happier. It has a nice heft to it (155g), grasps my wrist comfortably, and seems to be very sturdy. The watch isn’t too large to take all the attention, neither is it too small to look awkward on a man’s wrist.
I’ve been wearing it inside for my daily routine, as well as outside while shoveling snow and taking a walk. The watch is noticeable on a wrist when you want to but stays unnoticeable when you don’t think about it.
The Invicta Pro Diver also comes 200m (660ft) water-resistant. I haven’t tried it out in the water yet, but swimming or snorkeling shouldn’t be a problem with this watch. However, taking it deep down for diving might not be the best of decisions.
Despite its high water resistance level, the watch isn’t ISO-certified for professional diving. It means it hasn’t been tested in real conditions in the sea but in still water in the laboratory. It may withstand the conditions you’ll face with recreational diving (up to 100ft), but I wouldn’t bet on that.
All in all, my wearing experience couldn’t have been better as the Invicta Pro Diver makes it an excellent everyday wearable.
Pros & Cons of Invicta Pro Diver 8926OB
To summarize the Invicta Pro Diver review, the 8926OB model has more advantages to it than disadvantages.
The best part with this watch is, without a doubt, its automatic caliber that keeps wonderful time and features desirable hacking and hand-winding features. Less important isn’t also the famous Submariner case with an appealing dark-toned face and a sweeping hand.
The two most significant cons I faced were the almost non-existent luminosity and the rattling noise of the bracelet.
For a better overview of the pros and cons, check the following table.
Pros of Invicta 8926OB:
✅ Very affordable price
✅ Desirable 40mm Submariner case
✅ See-through caseback
✅ Accurate and reliable Seiko caliber
✅ Classy coin-edge bezel
✅ Sweeping second hand
✅ Magnified date window
Cons of Invicta 8926OB:
❌ Excess branding on the case
❌ Rattling bracelet when off-wrist
❌ Too stiff bezel to operate
❌ Weak luminosity
Alternative Invicta Pro Diver Watches
Not everyone wishes to go for the most obvious choice, which is the silver 40mm 8926OB model. The good news is that Invicta offers a plethora of other options for various tastes.
For example, another highly appreciated version is the Invicta 8928OB, which comes with a blue dial, golden center links, bezel, and crown. Other than that, the watch is identical to the 8926OB in terms of specifications.
However, if you want to maintain the black dial of the original watch but wish to have some golden tone featuring, check out the Invicta 8927OB.
Finally, there’s also the Invicta 8926, which comes with a scalloped bezel instead of the coin-edge version. All the other visual and physical features are identical to the 8926OB.
Final Words: Invicta Pro Diver Review
In the introduction, I asked three questions regarding the Invicta Pro Diver – is it good enough, will it last long enough, and is it worth buying?
From my own experience, I can say that the Invicta 8926OB is definitely worth purchasing, especially considering the unbelievable price that gets you a Submariner lookalike with an NH35 automatic caliber. For the price, the watch offers more than you can wish for. And although I have worn it for only a couple of weeks, the whole construction and the prestige of the caliber suggests a long lifetime.
If you don’t consider luminosity your primary prerequisite in a watch, and you can look past the minor flaws that are to do with the bracelet and excess branding, there is no better option for an automatic diver for under $100.
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