The Life Aquatic

Want This, Get This: Panerai Luminor Submersible 1950 or Magrette Moana Pacific Professional

Buying Guides By Photo by Panerai / Magrette

If you’re like us, you have a long list of gear you’d love to own. But reality (almost) always steps in, along with bank accounts and eagle-eyed spouses, and your gadget desires remain unfulfilled. What’s a guy to do? Gear Patrol’s series “Want This, Get This” presents a lust-worthy piece of gear along with a more affordable alternative that scratches the same itch.

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Panerai Luminor Submersible 1950 Amagnetic 3 Days Automatic Titanio

Though all Panerais are the descendants of dive watches made for Italian Navy frogmen during World War II, the Submersible line takes its subaquatic duties a little more seriously. The watches of this range all feature external rotating bezels for tracking elapsed time, the patented half-moon locking crown protector and a water resistance rated deeper than the wrist it’s strapped to. The 1950 Amagnetic 3 Days Automatic Titanio ($11,000) is arguably Panerai’s most rugged timepiece, with a matte finish titanium case, a scratchproof ceramic bezel insert and a soft iron movement cage that protects the self-winding in-house calibre P.9000 against the effects of magnetism. Of course, this being a Luminor, it glows with nuclear intensity during night maneuvers.

Magrette Moana Pacific Professional

If Giuseppe Panerai and his offspring had sailed south and settled in Auckland, the Florentine’s watches might have looked something like this. Magrette proudly hails from New Zealand, and evidence of this homeland can be found in subtle touches on its watches, from the Maori-inspired logo to the use of New Zealand canvas and pine for its packaging. The cushion-shaped 44mm case of the Moana Pacific Professional ($545, steel) may be reminiscent of a Panerai, but the bright color choices and bold, modern font of its dial markings are more suited for a sunny weekend regatta than a night-time beach incursion. Make no mistake though: this is no mere snorkeler. A helium release valve and 500 meters of water resistance are sweet overkill, providing a ready-for-anything peace of mind; a quality automatic Japanese movement keeps the time. The limited edition Moana Pacific is open for pre-order, slated to be shipped at the end of May and available with steel, PVD black steel or even rose gold flavors.