For many watch enthusiasts looking for a "one watch" watch — the popular timepiece is Tudor's Black Bay. But whether you are just getting into watches or looking to add to your collection, and love everything about the Tudor but don't have $3k to spend, we may have your solution. Vaer delivers a fantastic product with specs, features and looks that stack up to luxury timepieces at a price point you cannot beat.

While most of its timepieces are created in the U.S, Vaer has recently released a new and improved version of their bestselling Swiss-made dive watch - the D7. The D7 is the perfect "one-watch solution" for those looking for a truly refined sub-$1k Swiss diver.

We caught up with Vaer founders Ryan Torres and Reagan Cook to chat about how Vaer Watches came to be and discuss the details of the new release.

Ryan Torres and Reagan Cook, Founders, Vaer Watches

ryan torres and reagan cook

Ryan Torres was an avid surfer, heading out for dawn patrol in the mornings. In order to get to work in time, he needed a wristwatch that was durable enough to surf with but looked good enough to go into the office. Torres found that most surf-ready watches are rubberized and not formal enough for an office, and the ones that were formal enough were not durable enough for the ocean. Torres saw an opportunity, and dug into research on watchmaking and watch building. Together with his coworker Reagan Cook, they created Vaer Watches, with the goal of producing an affordable everyday wristwatch that blended tasteful design with extreme durability and functionality. Today, Vaer makes ocean-ready tool watches that are affordable, durable and crafted with timeless style.


Q: Why did you decide to launch a Swiss-made dive watch when so much of Vaer's identity is based on the American-made models?

Ryan Torres: "We know watch consumers love and appreciate Swiss-made. While our more affordable American assembled pieces are what we started with, even in the early days we always had a lot of requests to offer a Swiss option. When we decided to finally make the leap into purchasing premium ETA and Sellita movements, it only made sense to keep the assembly in Switzerland as well. What's really surprised us is that since we started making Swiss-made watches, we've begun to attract a lot of customers who are cross-shopping far more expensive options from brands like Tudor or TAG. The fact that someone would choose our D7 over a Black Bay was hard to believe at first - but after it kept popping up in owner reviews, we realized that we had caught the attention of pretty serious collectors."

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      Q: Who do you imagine wearing this watch?

      RT: "Our original vision was your city-dweller-urbanite who is a weekend warrior spending their time surfing, hiking or camping. But, we've actually found a lot of our consumers are watch nerds. They have watch collections, and they're out there searching for new, interesting brands. Our owners are all across the spectrum - we have lawyers and doctors and professionals on one end, and on the other end we have fishermen, firefighters and EMTs who want a watch they can beat up at work and not worry about it."

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      Q: What is your favorite feature of the D7?

      Reagan Cook: "The feature that I think will catch people's attention the most, initially, is the case design. We were in love with the mid to late 60s Omega Seamaster cases that used this beautiful twisting lug design, we tried our best to do something that was a faithful homage to that case, but then blended our own elements.

      "We created an oversized military style bezel action and added something that even the big Swiss luxury names often don't do, which is the exhibition caseback. There are a lot of subtle curvatures that are unique to Vaer, almost all of the lines on the watch and case are not straight lines — everything has a very liquid and flowing design language. Those are things that I think people will be really impressed with about the D7, specifically in that sub $800 pricepoint. "

          D7 Arctic Swiss Diver

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          The D7 combines the prestige of European luxury timepieces with the everyday utility at the heart of the Vaer brand. The D7 is built around a Swiss-made Sellita SW200, and the full watch is assembled in Switzerland. It features a screw-down crown and caseback, as well as a ceramic 120-click unidirectional bezel. The D7 also offers a scratch-resistant double domed top crystal and a sapphire caseback, so it can handle your roughest excursions. It's a watch that combines style, durability and affordability to make the perfect everyday dive watch.

          Price: $799

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