The Oris Aquis Red: Oris's 2014 Oceanic Conservation Watch
Since 2010, Oris has produced an annual series of limited edition dive watches dedicated to supporting aquatic conservation. The series has been extremely popular at Topper Fine Jewelers over its duration. This article examines the 2014 entry into the series, the Oris Aquis Red which supports the Red Sea Environmental Centre's (RSEC) work to protect the Indian Ocean's Red Sea.
Before we get into the watch itself, I thought it would be fun to briefly recap each of the watches in the series which debuted five years ago. In 2010, the first watch in the series, the Great Barrier Reef featured the barrel shaped 47mm case that was on the TT1 Titan Small Seconds. Its vibrant blue and orange color scheme was unlike any Oris that had come before it. The next year Oris came out with the Maldives limited edition. At 43mm, the Maldives was smaller than the Great Barrier Reef. It was also built on the more cylindrical Aquis case and was significantly lighter as it featured a titanium case. It was also an upgrade from the Great Barrier Reef in that it featured a ceramic bezel in place of anodized aluminum. In 2012, Oris introduced the Tubbataha, a larger watch with a 46mm diameter. Like the Maldives, it featured the Aquis case shape, but it returned to the blue and orange color scheme of the Great Barrier Reef. The Tubbataha was unique in that it featured regulator dial with only the minute hand centrally attached. This year's Aquis Red is the fourth watch in the series.
The Aquis Red is built on the platform of the 43mm Aquis. Like most of the other 43mm Aquis watches, the Acquis Red features a stainless steel case with a ceramic bezel. It is also similar to the other 43mm Aquis models in its availability on either a stainless steel bracelet ($2,190) or on a rubber strap ($1,990). This makes the watch about four hundred dollars more expensive than the non limited edition models.
One of the standout features of the Aquis Red is its colorful ceramic bezel. While the texture of the bezel is the same matted ceramic as on the other black Aquis 43mm watches, what's unique is the red indices on the first quarter of the bezel. Combined with the red seconds hand and red 5-minute numbers, this black and red color combo provides a nice contrast to the gray dial.
The other notable feature of the Limited Edition is the location of the crown. Instead of a three o'clock placement, the crown and accompanying guards are inverted to nine o'clock. This arrange is not an Oris first. Around 10 years ago, Oris had a limited edition "driving" watch named after racing star Alan McNish. The idea for the inversion was that it would be more comfortable to grip the wheel if the crown wasn't in the way.
Like the other watches in the series, the typical Oris display back is replaced by a playful graphic that depicts the conservation effort associated with the watch. In this case, it's a fish and a piece of coral. A portion of the proceeds of each Aquis Red sale goes to provide scholarships for the Red Sea Environmental Centre (RSEC). Oris has provided two scholarships for an upcoming Reef Monitoring Project that will take place in 2015. Oris is seeking to send skilled bloggers to the project who can help record the project and spread the message of oceanic conservation.
The Topper Blog consists mainly of original writing by Rob & Russ Caplan with occasional special contributions and interviews. All photography in the blog is taken at Topper Fine Jewelers , or on location unless otherwise indicated in the photo captions.