New Certina DS Action 43mm could be the perfect sub-£1000 dive watch

The stealth black timepiece is modelled after the the darkness of the ocean

The Certina DS Action on a reef beside some fish
(Image credit: Certina)

When it comes to the best dive watches on the market, you're spoilt for choice. Popular classics like the Rolex Submariner and the Omega Seamaster ooze heritage and rightfully dominate the luxury dive watch segment.

If you're looking to spend a little less, the water gets a little murkier. There are a lot of options in the circa £1,000 price segment, and separating the wheat from the chaff can be tough.

Fortunately, there are a lot of really good options – just like the new Certina DS Action 43mm. Certina is a name which should be familiar to users in this price segment, offering some really great quality without breaking the bank.

As part of the Swatch Group, they also have access to a lot of cool technology. That includes the Powermatic 80 movement found here – perhaps best popularised on the Tissot PRX. That – as the name suggests – packs a fantastic 80-hour power reserve, meaning you can leave it for over three full days and still find it ticking away.

That's cased in 316L stainless steel here, which is Black PVD coated. The screw-down crown is, too, along with the screw-in caseback. There's also a unidirectional rotating bezel, which packs a black ceramic inlay.

The dial features a black lacquer finish, offset with white hands, indexes and a date complication at the three o'clock position. Those hands and indexes – plus the marker on the bezel – are coated with Super-LumiNova, for visibility in the dark.

That's a pretty stacked spec sheet, but there's two more things about this watch which I think make it a top pick. First, the water resistance. It's rated for an eye-popping 300m, and meets the ISO 6425 standard. That makes it a 'true' dive watch, and more than capable of handling some serious underwater activity.

Second, it comes as standard on a black NATO strap. That won't be for everyone, but for a watch like this – which is made to live in the ocean – it's a fantastically useful feature. I touched on it briefly when I changed my watch strap, but the NATO is a real unsung hero in the watch world.

The way it attaches means that if a spring bar fails, your watch is still attached at the other end. That is crucial for saving it from falls, and is a big part of the reason why these are so popular.

The Certina DS Action 43mm is available now. It costs just £835, and you can pick one up on the Certina website.

Sam Cross
Staff Writer

Online news writer at, Sam has five years of experience in online and print journalism, with work featured in publications like Metro and Last Word on Sports. After years writing about music and football, Sam now turns his hand to bringing you news about new phones, smart home products, smart watches, laptops and TVs. Sam is a longtime fan and user of Apple products, including iPhones, MacBooks and Apple Watches.He’s also T3’s resident football expert, bringing you everything you need to know about the big games, including how to watch them. In his spare time, Sam is a keen guitarist, watch lover and (very) amateur golfer.