Top 15 Best Rolex Submariner Homages & Affordable Alternatives

Rolex is undeniably one of the most popular timepiece brands. Among its collections stand the Submariner, a model which became a classic. It was a pioneer in water resistant watches in a time when diving was popular. Rolex utilized this and created the quality water resistant watch for everyone.

Its quality, design, and features attributed to its immense popularity. Fortunately, there are a lot of Submariner homage models that make quality, similar, yet authentic watches that relive the Submariner’s glory. In this blog post we have put together a collection of 15 best Rolex Submariner homages for you.

Why are there homages to the Rolex Submariner?

It’s not hard to imagine why the Submariner is an icon. Built during the time when diving was a popular sport, Rolex created a high quality and accessible water resistant watch that the general public can buy. Combining quality with good advertising, it was bound to be a sure hit.

Rolex’s Submariner also got cast into the spotlight as the iconic James Bond’s first timepiece. The series, with continuous developments and innovations, was utilized in 11 of his films. Through that span in time, it underwent several changes and improvements.

There are a lot of qualities that make the Rolex Submariner longed for. Its history is its testament, but the design was probably what people liked most with its classy and simple look, making it a symbol of style and sportiness. Up until now, this design is regarded as one of the most popular of all timepieces.

The look and design of the Rolex Submariner

The classic model featured a hermetic seal along its sides and crown that kept water away with 100m/330 feet water resistance, an innovation that attracted divers and the general public. New models have water resistance to 300m/1000 feet, features Chromalight hour markers, Parachrom hairspring, and more new features.

The simplicity and straightforwardness of the classic Submariner‘s design is one of its charms. The model that everyone have and continue to love had simple color tones that often portray a bare yet sophisticated look. Despite being a diving watch, people can wear this on any formal or special occasion.

There are a lot of variations on the design and feature of the Submariner in recent models. However, the most popular look which lots of watch collectors have fallen in love & many brands have tried to imitated includes:

  • Its large guarded screw-down crown
  • Sloped bezel with luminous insert
  • Dots representing every hour
  • A triangle for the 12 hour mark
  • Dashes for the 6 and 9 hour marks
  • A date window with Cyclops at 3 o’clock

The Rolex Submariner is also a testament to its own durability. Its 50 years of existence, continuous development, ongoing innovations, and an effective water resistance say a lot for the quality of the timepiece. Being a watch for scuba diving, it is no doubt made to withstand rough environments and use.

Best Rolex Submariner Alternatives

Invicta 8926OB Pro Diver

What is it?

The Invicta 8926OB Pro Diver is an impressive homage and is very similar to the Submariner in its appearance and function as a diver’s timepiece. There is of course a big difference on the internal works of both watches, though, which makes the large gap in price justified.

Comparison

To compare the Invicta 8926OB and the Rolex Submariner, we take a closer look at its materials and inner workings.

FeaturesInvicta 8926OBRolex Submariner
CrystalMineral crystalSapphire crystal
MovementNH35A Seiko (24j)Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case40mm steel40mm steel
CrownScrew-downScrew-down
BezelSteel (uni-directional)Ceramic (uni-directional)
BraceletLight band and pinsHeavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment ClaspFold-overFold-over
Water Resistance200m300m

The similarities of the Invicta 8926OB with the Submariner are great. The hands of the Invicta 8926OB are also sword-like, the case size is similar, the ‘pearl’ is also present in its bezel, and the 6, 9, 12 hour marks are also rectangular. It’s almost the same look at the dial besides the brand.

Pros

  • Almost looks exactly like the Rolex Submariner
  • A reliable Seiko NH35A automatic movement
  • The design makes it suitable for most outfits
  • Budget-friendly

Cons

  • The lume is quite weak
  • Bezel may be stiff and needs some time getting used to

Is it for you?

If you opt for the classic look of the Submariner minus the price tag, you may choose this Invicta Rolex homage to suit your style. Though it is obvious that the parts and features of the Submariner is superior compared to the Invicta, what it lacks in quality, it makes up for its closeness in looks with a budget-friendly price tag.

Seiko SNZF17 Automatic

What is it?

Seiko’s SNZF17 is another good option if you want an inexpensive Submariner homage. The appearance of both watches is very similar, with a few differences. Knowing that this is a Seiko product, the quality is not compromised even with its price tag.

Comparison

FeaturesSeiko SNZF17Rolex Submariner
CrystalHardlex (harder mineral crystal)Sapphire crystal
Movement7S36C Self-winding (23j)Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case41mm steel40mm steel
CrownPush-pullScrew-down
BezelSteel (uni-directional)Ceramic (uni-directional)
BraceletLight band and pinsHeavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment ClaspFold-overFold-over
Water Resistance100m300m

The look of the two watches may be very similar, but there are a few noticeable differences as well. This Seiko SNZF17 has a few differences on the bezel labels, the calendar, and the 12 hour trapezoidal shape. There is also a small difference in the size and the bracelet pins for the links.

Pros

  • Design is similar to Submariner but with a few differences for a different look
  • Price range offers an inexpensive homage option
  • Hardlex crystal is sturdier than the normal mineral crystal

Cons

  • The dial may look a bit crowded with the logo and bezel design
  • Non-hacking movement
  • Rated only at 100m, not fit for scuba diving, just for water sports & snorkeling

Is it for you?

The Seiko SNZF17 is the best Submariner homage under $200. If you want an inexpensive yet trustworthy alternative to the Rolex Submariner with a bit of visible difference to the appearance for a different look, then this is a good choice to make.

It’s also a good catch for Japanese watch lovers as this is another great model from Seiko. There are multiple differences but the core look of the original remains nearly identical.

Bulova 98B203 Marine Star

What is it?

The Bulova 98B203 is a Submariner homage that is a bit bigger than the real thing. It comes from the Marine Star collection of the brand that boasts its sporty function with a classy look. There are only a few differences from this and the Submariner from its looks, size, and it being an inexpensive option.

Comparison

FeaturesBulova 98B203Rolex Submariner
CrystalMineral crystalSapphire crystal
MovementJapanese Quartz movementRolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case43mm steel40mm steel
CrownPush-pullScrew-down
BezelAluminum (uni-directional)Ceramic (uni-directional)
BraceletLight band and pinsHeavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment ClaspFold-overFold-over
Water Resistance100m300m

Some of the differences of the Bulova 98B203 include its larger size, its bezel not having a ‘pearl’, the rectangular symbols for the 6, 9, and 12 hour marks, and the presence of a small rectangle beside the date at the 3 hour mark, besides the movement and its internal works.

Pros

  • Size is larger for people who opt to buy a larger sized watch
  • Inexpensive homage for the Submariner with similar looks
  • Minimalist dial design that is easy to read

Cons

  • Size may be off for most people who dislike large watches
  • Water resistance is only rated at 100m

Is it for you?

Since the size of the Bulova 98B203 is bigger than the regular Submariner, this fits people with larger body built or those who opt to sport a larger watch with the same look albeit some differences. It fits people with an active lifestyle but is not really meant for diving but only for water sports or snorkeling.

Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba

What Is it?

The Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba is a special homage in that the dial has its own identity as another watch that is in the body of a Submariner. The design and look is fitting as a different watch that can stand on its own yet its roots remain noticeable in the original diver watch.

Comparison

FeaturesHamilton Khaki Navy ScubaRolex Submariner
CrystalSapphire crystalSapphire crystal
MovementETA 2834 (25j)Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case41mm steel40mm steel
CrownScrew-downScrew-down
BezelSteel (uni-directional)Ceramic (uni-directional)
BraceletLight band and pinsHeavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment ClaspFold-overFold-over
Water Resistance100m300m

The Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba is an interesting homage as its body retains the look of a Submariner while having a unique dial that is undoubtedly Hamilton’s style. The difference shows that the timepiece is composed of 50% Hamilton and 50% Rolex. The look combines the best of both and fits perfectly.

The bezel is similar to the Submariner minus the ‘pearl’. Numbers represent the usual circles and rectangles for the hour marks. The 12 hour mark is replaced by a display that states the day of the week and the 6 hour mark is replaced by the actual day. Numbers 13-24 are added, completing the hour cycle.

Pros

  • Dial design is unique while the body retains the image of a Submariner
  • Price is still comparably inexpensive than the Submariner
  • Has great quality Swiss Made ETA automatic movement
  • With a durable sapphire crystal

Cons

  • Water resistance is only at 100m
  • Dial may be a bit confusing or crowded

Is it for you?

If you want a Submariner homage that has its own dial identity, then this is exactly for you. The look of the watch perfectly distributes 50% Hamilton and 50% Rolex. As it has the body of a Submariner, it exudes class associated with the model while being uniquely Hamilton in dial design that fits in with its overall look. It costs more than the usual homage, but the quality definitely makes up for it.

Longines HYDROCONQUEST L3.741.4.56.6

This Swiss watch is a stunner with a sapphire crystal, blue dial with Arabic numerals, and luminescent hands. What completes the look of this watch is this unidirectional bezel and a unique looking crown guard. I’ve chosen the quartz version of this model as the aim of this is the greatest bang for your buck, and I feel that this one represents better value than the ETA automatic version. What sets Longines HYDROCONQUEST L3.741.4.56.6 apart from others at this price point is that it is water-resistant to 300 meters, which is far deeper for the most ordinary divers dare to go.

Comparison

Features Longines HYDROCONQUEST Rolex Submariner
Crystal Sapphire crystal Sapphire crystal
Movement Automatic L888.2 Caliber Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 39mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Ceramic (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Fold-over Fold-over
Water Resistance 300m 300m

Pros

  • Great details
  • Can be used as a dress watch
  • Very comfortable to wear
  • Super-Luminova applied on all hands and hour markers
  • 64 hours of power reserve

Cons

  • The clasp is very flat that makes it hard to pull it out with nails

Davosa Ternos Professional TT

Davosa is a swiss company that has been making watches since 1881. They produce high quality, beautiful watches under strict quality control. Davosa watches fall under the category of affordable Swiss-made luxury watches because of their functionalities, quality, and design.

Comparison

Features Davosa Ternos Professional TT Rolex Submariner
Crystal Sapphire crystal Sapphire crystal
Movement Automatic DAV 3021 Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 42mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Ceramic (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and crews
Deployment clasp Fold-over Fold-over
Water Resistance 500m 300m

Davosa Ternos Professional TT is probably the larger or the beefier model of its range, but when you put it on your wrist, it doesn’t feel too big at all. The watch is a 42 mm in dimension, 50.5 mm lug to lug, and 15.3 mm thick. It comes with anti-glare, sapphire crystal. The bracelet has a dive extension that comes handy when you put it on your wet-suit. Davosa Ternos Professional TT is a very reliable and a great entry-level Swiss made luxury diver watch.

Pros

  • Swiss made
  • Looks exactly like Rolex submariner
  • Easy to read dial
  • Scratch resistant sapphire crystal

Cons

  • Expensive compare to average diver watches

Orient ‘Mako II’

Orient is a brand that you may not have heard of if you live in the UK, but in countries such as the United States and also in the Asian continent, it is a brand that is well known. It is a sister brand of Seiko, and the Mako is the Orient’s best-selling series of watches. All orient mechanical watches have an in-house movement. The Mako 2 improves upon the original Mako by using a more robust automatic movement caliber that can also be hand-wound. It also benefits from a new and improved 120 click unidirectional rotating bezel and has 200 meters of water resistance. The crown is a screw-down type which helps to ensure its water resistance credentials.

Comparison

Features Orient ‘Mako II’ Rolex Submariner
Crystal Mineral Sapphire crystal
Movement ORIENT Cal. F6922Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 41.5mm Stainless steel40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Stainless steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Push button Fold-over Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

Pros

  • Hacking and hand winding movement
  • Fits most wrists well
  • Screw down crown
  • Day/date complication
  • Good bezel action (120 click)

Cons

  • Crown is too small
  • Mineral crystal can be scratched easily

Orient Ray 2

Ray 2 uses the same excellent F69, 22 jewel movement as the Mako 2. This is Orient’s in-house movement, which is Japanese made and accurate straight up the box without needing further calibration. Ray 2 has a different dial compared to the Mako as there are no Arabic numerals on the dial, and the hour markers are circular shapes. It means that the markers have more lume, and the globe is super bright and long-lasting. These markers on the dial give it a more polished submariner look than the Mako 2. The bezel design is also slightly different, but it uses the same 120 click mechanism.

Features Orient Ray 2 Rolex Submariner
Crystal Mineral Sapphire crystal
Movement ORIENT Cal. F6922Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 41.5mm Stainless steel40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Stainless steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Push button Fold-over Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

Finally, like most Orient watches, Ray 2 is water-resistant to 200 meters. There is an ongoing debate about which is the better watch the Mako or the Ray, but fundamentally, they are the same watch with a different dial. It just comes down to which look you prefer as the Mako has a dressier look, and the Ray has a sporty look.

Pros

  • Great in-house movement
  • Screw down crown
  • 120 click bezel
  • Bright lume
  • Value for money

Cons

  • Crown can be hard to grip
  • Tight bezel difficult to turn

Seiko Turtle SRP775 Automatic Diver Watch

The original turtle was the Seiko 6309 and introduced in 1977 but ended in 1988. Seiko then reintroduced it in 2016 by bringing it back with color variations. The one we have here is the SRP775. Make no mistake at 44 millimeters; it is a big and rugged watch. It came to be known as the turtle because of its pin cushion-shaped case. The rugged construction of this watch quickly gained popularity amongst divers. The turtle uses Seiko’s 4R36 movement, which is exceptionally accurate. The watch loses or gains about two seconds a day, which is absolutely on par with the Submariner. As with all Seiko’s modern-day dive watches, the lumey bright flows very well, and this watch is water-resistant to 200 meters.

Comparison

Features Seiko Turtle SRP775 Rolex Submariner
Crystal Hardlex Sapphire crystal
Movement Seiko 4R36 Caliber Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 45mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Stainless steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment clasp Push button deployment Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

Pros

  • Classic design
  • Versatile
  • 41 hours of power reserve
  • Luminescent hands and indexes

Cons

  • Hardlex crystal
  • Might look big on slender wrists

Citizen Promaster Diver Eco-Drive

Proof that a dive watch can be fun & functional with the CITIZEN ISO-compliant Super Titanium Promaster Diver. With Eco-Drive technology, it is powered by light and never needs a battery, so you’ll never need to open your caseback or compromise your dive again. Featured in a Super Titanium case and bracelet, aluminum bezel and black dial, one-way rotating elapsed time, and WR200. The watch uses Eco-Drive technology that means any light can power it. You will never need to change a battery.

Comparison

Features Citizen Promaster Diver Rolex Submariner
Crystal Mineral Sapphire crystal
Movement Quartz Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 44mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Aluminium (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Super Titanium Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Push button fold-over Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

Pros

  • Solar powered
  • Luminous hands and markers
  • Chronograph functionality
  • ISO Compliant diver watch

Cons

  • The crown is too small

TAG Heuer Formula 1

The Tag Heuer F1 is a vital part of the Tag Heuer range, and its roots can be traced back to 1986 when it was first introduced. The F1 was the first new model produced when Tag Group purchased Heuer and became Tag Heuer. The original Tag Heuer series was a huge sales success and sold more than 3 million units until it was discontinued temporarily in 2000. It was brought back into production in 2004, and here we have the latest incarnation, which was introduced in 2015.

Comparison

Features TAG Heuer Formula 1 Rolex Submariner
Crystal Synthetic sapphire Sapphire crystal
Movement Quartz Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 41mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Steel black PVD (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Folding clasp Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

This new version uses quality materials. It has a sapphire crystal and a unique bezel and crown coated in titanium carbide. Tag Heuer Formula 1 uses an in-house quartz movement, which is in line with the original F1 series, and it is water-resistant to 200 meters.

Pros

  • High quality
  • Beautiful design

Cons

  • Quartz movement

Tudor Heritage Black Bay

Tudor is a sister brand of Rolex and was formed by Rolex’s’ founder Hans Wilsdorf in 1946. He created the brand with the intention of producing watches at the same quality as Rolex but a lower price point. It was achieved mainly by using Rolex’s Oyster cases but replacing the Rolex movement with an ETA movement to keep the costs low. Therefore Tudor watches were seen in some people’s minds as being Rolex’s little brother.

Comparison

Features Tudor Heritage Black Bay Rolex Submariner
Crystal Domed sapphire Sapphire crystal
Movement Calibre MT5602 (COSC) Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 41mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment clasp Folding buckle with safety clasp Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

However, since 2015 Tudor has been using their in-house movement on their black bay heritage watches, and this is why the Black bay heritage is on this list. If you’ve only been able to save up for about half the cost of a Submariner, then you could get yourself one of these. The Tudor caliber MT5602 movement used in this watch has an astonishing 70 hours of power reserve. It beats at twenty-eight thousand eight hundred beats per hour so that the ticking second hand is buttery smooth, and of course, it has been officially certified as a chronometer meaning that it is exceptionally accurate. As for the rest of the watch its water-resistant to 200 meters and features Tudor’s famous over-sized crown and snowflake dial.

Pros

  • Heritage design
  • In-house movement
  • Comes with 5 years guarantee
  • Self-winding mechanical movement
  • 70 Hours of power reserve

Cons

  • Case is thicker than most watches

Oris Divers Sixty-Five

This is a retro-style watch released by the Swiss company Oris in 2015 as an homage to the original 1960s divers watches. Their original watches were 36 millimetres in diameter, and with this release, they brought it bang up to date by increasing it to 40 millimetres. It features a 120 unidirectional click bezel and a domed crystal. What makes it stand out from other divers watches is that Oris has been unique in design with a beautiful dial and have made it thinner at under 13 millimetres thick. You can see that this watch stands up to all the Submariner copies. The super-luminova lume applied to this watch also makes it stand out in the dark, and it is water-resistant to 100 meters.

Comparison

Features Oris Divers Sixty-Five Rolex Submariner
Crystal Domed sapphire Sapphire crystal
Movement Swiss automatic Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 40mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Stainless steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless Steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Fold-over Fold-over
Water Resistance 100m 300m

Pros

  • Vintage inspired design
  • Automatic winding date
  • 38 hours of power reserve
  • Superluminova hands and indexes

Cons

  • The bezel is not very robust

Stuhrling Regatta 792 Automatic

Stuhrling has been in the watch industry for almost 18 years now, and they make cool watches. They are known for their fancy skeletonized classy looking watches. Stuhrling has various watch ranges such as aquadiver, aviator, legacy, and many more. Stuhrling Regatta 792 Automatic is from their aquadiver line. This particular model is considered as Rolex submariner homage and very similar in design. It comes in four different color combinations. If you are looking for an affordable Rolex submariner alternative, then Stuhrling Regatta 792 will tick all the boxes.

Comparison

Features Stuhrling Regatta 792 Rolex Submariner
Crystal Krysterna crystals Sapphire crystal
Movement Miyota 8215 Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 42mm Stainless steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Stainless steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Push button deploying clasp Fold-over
Water Resistance 200m 300m

Pros

  • Luminous Rolex style hands
  • Luminous triangle, circle and stick indexes

Cons

  • Lume is not very bright

CERTINA DS ACTION

CERTINA may be a brand that you are not familiar with, but it is a part of the Swatch group, which is the parent company of famous brands such as Omega and Longines. With quality sister brands such as these, Certina offers all the quality of a high-end Swiss watch brand without the high asking price. This is certainly handy as our whole point is to find a quality and affordable Rolex Submariner alternative. The DS action diver watch offers more than a passing resemblance to the Omega Seamaster with the arrowhead at the tip of the hour hand. The dial is beautifully clear, and it has a date window at the 4:30 position. This watch is water-resistant to 200 meters and powered by an ETA 2824 movement.

Comparison

Features CERTINA DS ACTIONRolex Submariner
Crystal Sapphire Sapphire crystal
Movement Swiss automatic Rolex Caliber 3135 (31j)
Case 43mm steel 40mm steel
Crown Screw-down Screw-down
Bezel Stainless steel (uni-directional) Ceramic (uni-directional)
Bracelet Stainless steel Heavy Oyster band and screws
Deployment Clasp Deploying clasp with push buttons Fold-over
Water Resistance 300m 300m

Pros

  • Diver extension bracelet
  • 80 hours power reserve
  • ISO 6425 Standard
  • Very comfortable to wear

Cons

  • Average lume

Summary

The Rolex Submariner is a decades old classic born out of innovation, functionality, and strategic marketing. With its continuous rise, it’s no wonder many other brands have come up with their own quality homages to this iconic timepiece.

The Invicta 8926OB is an excellent choice as inexpensive with almost the exact same look as the Submariner. Seiko’s SNZF17J1 is slightly different looking and is also a reliable choice with its brand. The Bulova 98B203 is another option if you want a watch that is larger than the usual Submariner. For the Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba, it provides a similar case for the watch but a more unique look for the dial.

No matter which timepiece you choose, there are certainly some pros and cons to each product. But your perfect watch all comes down to your preferences and what you think would fit your overall look, lifestyle, and day-to-day activities.

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