Albany AMA Diver

Albany AMA Diver

Manufacturer: Albany Watches | Price: from $375 USD (£290 GBP, €345 EUR approx)

The AMA Diver from Albany Watches is inspired by the old tradition of female Japanese ama divers. Japan, being a seafaring island, has a very long history of diving and underwater exploration and the ama traditions are said to go as far back as almost two thousand years. These females would freedive down to as far as a depth of around 30 meters, to obtain food and various other riches of the sea, sometimes in nearly freezing conditions and barely wearing a stitch of clothing. Personally, I’d just nip down to the fishmongers’ counter in Tesco’s, a lot bloody easier (and warmer)! 🤣🤣

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Specifications

  • Dimensions: Diameter – 41.2mm, Thickness – 12.6mm, Lug to Lug – 48.1mm, Lug Width – 20mm
  • Movement: Miyota 9039, Automatic, 28,800vph (4Hz), Hackable, Self Winding, 42hr Power Reserve
  • Case Material: Brushed 316L Stainless Steel
  • Bracelet: Brushed 316L Stainless Steel, Beads of Rice, Solid End Links, Screw Pins, Signed Milled Clasp
  • Crystal: Domed Sapphire, Underside Anti-Reflective Coating
  • Bezel: 120 Click Unidirectional, Sapphire Insert, Fully Lumed
  • Water Resistance: 300m / 30ATM / 990ft
  • Lume: Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9
  • Crown: Screw Down, Signed
  • Caseback: Screw Down, Etched AMA Diver Logo
  • Warranty: 1 Year     Where to Buy: Albany Watches
  • Options: Colour – Abyss Black, Black Pearl, Navy Fume | Strap – Beads of Rice Bracelet, Leather Two Piece

Albany Watches - The Company

"Glory is fleeting. Only worthy triumph endures. Leave your comfort zones and rediscover what truly matters with the Albany Ama Diver. Our designs resonate a time when the world was undiscovered and full of wonder, influenced by the true stories of pioneering trailblazers. We celebrate these lesser-known traditions and adventurers. Whose feats of determination have lived to be told. Waiting to be discovered. Destined to inspire. The AMA Divers of Japan - Individual recognition is not why the female Japanese ama divers descended 30 meters below near-freezing waters with nothing but their fishing nets. For the ama (meaning sea women), retrieving seafood for survival and abalone for emperors was an honor, and not for their own glory. Their training would begin at age 12, and they would dive until aged 70 or 80. Theirs was a lifelong commitment. To nourishing their inner underdog. Answering the challenge. Conquering their limits. Yet discovering a wealth of substance that lies beneath the surface and beyond the shallows."

Case & Crown

The case of the Albany AMA Diver has a diameter of 41.2mm. The lug to lug is 48.1mm and the overall thickness, including the domed sapphire crystal, I measured in at 12.6mm. The entire case, caseback, bezel, crown and bracelet are all 316L stainless steel. The finish of the watch is brushed, with not a single polished accent to be found anywhere.

The AMA Diver has a water resistance rating of 300m, thanks to the screw down caseback & crown. The proportions of the watch are very nice indeed for my average sized 7″ wrist. This is all due to the great lug to lug length of just around the 48mm mark. The AMA Diver does wear extremely well on wrist and it’s also very comfortable on the optional bracelet.

The signed crown is fantastic and looks great with it’s deeply etched logo. There is absolutely no wobble whatsoever when the crown is in use and you can also feel a very nice pop as you unscrew it. You can also see and feel the amount of work that has gone into the crown, making it feel rather premium. The caseback has a very nicely etched Japanese female Ama skin diver on it with the usual various specifications etched around the edges. Very nice!

Straps / Bracelet

The version of the AMA Diver that I received came fitted with the optional beads of rice stainless steel bracelet. To keep the cost down you could always opt for the AMA Diver on leather. The bracelet itself that I have here only costs an additional $45, and trust me, it’s definitely worth that extra small outlay of cash. It is of excellent quality and is very comfortable on wrist. Solid links & end links, screw pins all round and a signed milled clasp. That’s brilliant value!

Movement

The chosen movement for the AMA Diver is the high beat, Miyota 9039, the no-date version of the highly popular 9015 from the same manufacturer. It is a very slim Japanese made 28,800vph, 4Hz, smooth sweep, 24 jewel movement with self winding, hacking and a very nice 42 hour power reserve.

Checking the accuracy after running the AMA Diver for just over a week, mainly on my wrist and occasionally in my watch winder, I was very happy with the results, with it showing an average of just +4.9spd. Very nice indeed!

This is within Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres (COSC) specification, although the Albany AMA Diver isn’t officially COSC certified.

Dial & Bezel

The Albany AMA Diver has a 120 click unidirectional bezel with a fully lumed sapphire insert. It is of great quality with everything lining up perfectly, just as it should. The bezel action is brilliant with no backplay. The text on the dial that’s printed are the words AMA with the depth rating of 30ATM just below, which I have to admit works very well and I love the choice of font. The Albany logo is also printed and is placed at just under the 12 o’clock position. Very nice & clean!

The black pearl version that I have here, sports quite a funky looking effect that glimmers in certain lights although I did find it quite difficult to capture it in my photos. If I have to be brutally honest though, I’m not really a fan of the effect and would’ve much preferred if they had sent me one of the other toned down versions. To other people though, they might actually love this pearl effect that’s on the dial. Each to their own, as they say.

The indicies, I feel are slightly too small in relation to the rest of the dial. The double batons however, at the 3, 6, & 9 positions, as well as the triangular marker at 12 are all a good solid choice. The hands on the dial I wouldn’t change though, as they are probably the best design choice that’s been picked for the AMA Diver. Very precise and clean looking.

Lume

The lume on the Albany AMA Diver is pretty good, although I do feel it could do with more, but this is down to the actual lume real estate that’s available on the hands and indicies. Even if the lume is initially quite bright, it does tend to fade quicker than others I’ve seen. The actual lume that’s been applied to the AMA Diver, is Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9.

Conclusion

Overall, this is a lovely watch and it’s fantastic value for money. The AMA Diver has been very well thought out and designed, utilising a slim Japanese 9-series movement from Miyota and the rest of the specs are pretty much everything that all us watch enthusiasts desire in a watch. Well, I certainly do anyway!

If I was choosing one for myself however, I’d probably opt for the blue fume dial version. Why, I hear you ask? Because I’m not overly keen on this black pearl version plus the fact that I’ve always been a bit of a blue dial fan boy. Making the indicies larger would suit the watch much better in my opinion, it would also give more real estate for more lume.

Albany WatchesA very nice watch indeed, that ticks all the boxes in terms of the use of premium materials. Great job!

Design
8.7/10
Quality
8.6/10
Value
9.5/10
TOTAL
8.9/10
8.9/10 - RECOMMENDED!
A massive thank you to Brett for sending me the AMA Diver out for review so quickly. Very much appreciated!
 
To view the Albany Watches website, or join their mailing list to be informed of new models etc, visit Albany Watches.
 
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This Post Has One Comment

  1. Richard Melo

    How long did you wait for the watch to arrive after ordering it?

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