Tudor’s large and expansive collection of Black Bays has embodied some of the greatest quality-price-ratio propositions on the marketplace since it was introduced at Baselworld in 2012. When people ask what watch they can buy for about AUD 5000, the response is the same old story, Tudor Black Bay.
The problem is that, even though the imposing, culture-and-history-inspired dive watch has only been around there for 8 years, it has already undergone numerous changes and generated several different versions.
Take a look back at some of the most significant variations of the name and declare which one is reigning supreme as we feature here some of the most fantastic and amazing models available today.
Heritage Black Bay Black 79220N
The launch of the Tudor Black Bay Black, which was revealed at Baselworld 2015, was the next significant leap in the existence of vintage dive watches. This is the timepiece that everybody has been anticipating. There were no colored bezels, only a simple black model that appeared eerily similar to the reference 7923/001, which was introduced a year earlier for Only Watch 2014.
At last, there was a design that could be a true, functional, and profitable solution to the Rolex Submariner, the Black Bay’s older cousin. The curved “self-winding” text and classic Tudor rose motif persisted, as did the ETA movement. This watch, like the burgundy version, is still available on the secondary market for affordable prices, and it can become highly coveted in the years to come.
Heritage Black Bay 7922R
The Heritage Black Bay, designed to pay homage to the Tudor Submariner of 1954 ref 7922, was greeted with overwhelming acclaim from the watch press and culture. The gilt dial, burgundy bezel, curved “self-winding” font on the dial, and small Tudor rose all screamed “winner.”
In reality, the watch was such a success that it earned the GPHG’s “Revival Prize” a year after its debut, the first of several GPHG awards in the years before. The early watches, which included a tweaked ETA 2824 mechanism, are now known as “smileys.” They can still be had for less than $4000, and their hot, history charm has not faded with the flow of time.
Heritage Black Bay Bronze M79250BM
This watch was unlike any other in terms of jarring the machine. Not just did Tudor opt for an in-house movement, entirely tailored Calibre MT5601 and MT5602, rather than the updated ETA 2824 movement utilized in all Heritage Black Bays. This self-winding manufacture marvel boasted a battery capacity of 70 hours and was chronometer certified.
Heritage Black Bay Dark M79230DK
The Tudor Black Bay Dark was yet another controversial wristwatch that sent quakes through the Swiss watch community. The inky harmony of PVD-closed stainless steel case and bracelet was something not present from Tudor before. It’s still a handsome watch, and the centering triangle of the unidirectional rotating bezel and the red text on the “200m: 600ft” text, this timepiece is very likable as it just looks awesome. The Dark, like its Bronze counterparts, has a manufactured movement, the Calibre MT5602.
Heritage Black Bay 36 M79500
This entirely new version, which was also released simultaneously as the Dark and Bronze Black Bay, was also a great shock from the Geneva ensemble. This exclusive stainless steel three-hander spans 36 mm long, and it doesn’t get any cooler than this for those searching for a retro-inspired, explorer-Esque wristwatch that won’t cost too much.
The Black Bay 36 also uses a tweaked ETA 2824 movement that was previously removed from the larger dive versions of the watch, bringing the price down significantly – on the bracelet, it costs only AUD 4000.
Black Bay Steel M79730
We had no idea this was going to happen until it arrived on the digital doorway in March of 2017. The Black Bay Steel is a stunning tool, and while all of the versions are ancestry-inspired, this one is the most vintage. The stainless steel bezel is symmetrically polished and looks fantastic.
Also, it’s important to note that this was the first classification to receive a date complication, which brought with it the introduction of Calibre MT5612, a recent in-house movement. None of the Black Bays has a Cyclops over the date eyepiece before with the window being tiny and understated.
Black Bay S&G M79733N
The Tudor Black Bay S&G was introduced in 2017 as the first Black Bay to incorporate valuable metal. The S&G combines brushed yellow gold and polished stainless steel to produce a wristwatch that is exclusive throughout the selection. It is equipped with a champagne or black gold dial.
However, although the end links and bezel are pure gold, the ties on the bracelet are simply gold-capped which isn’t a huge deal, by any means. And, if you can see beyond the semi-precious distortion, it is believed to be one of the most attractive Black Bays ever created. This S&G has a date window and the Manufacture Calibre MT5612, much like its imperious counterparts.
Black Bay Chrono M79350
The polarizing Black Bay Chrono was the third and final update to the Black Bay selection for 2017. There are several gotcha questions about this chronograph, many of which are positive and others which are negative. First of all, the Calibre MT5813 movement was produced in collaboration with Breitling as part of an agreement between the two watch brands to share several movements between the two brands.
The new Calibre retained the 70-hour battery life and chronometer certification supported by the majority of the in-house Black Bays and incorporated a self-winding, column-wheel chronograph complication. Everything was scored as being waterproof to a depth of 200 meters, which is very impressive. Don’t let the price fool you, this is a ton of watches for the cash.
The Tudor brand had been rebranding itself before the release of the Tudor Black Bay. Their approach was simple: start digging into their history for ideas and blend their rich history with cutting-edge science and manufacturing.
The Tudor Heritage Black Bay has evolved into the epitome of well-executed traditional-meets-contemporary design. It’s interesting to consider as your next watch because it has a tried-and-true style and has a long-lasting movement.