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The Rolex Submariner is without question the brand's most iconic model, and is a perennial favorite among collectors, enthusiasts, fashionistas, and yes--actual divers.
So when Rolex changed a classic design like the Rolex Submariner, the brand risked raising the ire of Submariner purists. The Reference 1680, released in 1966, deviated from previous iterations of the Submariner--like the beloved Reference 5513--by including a date window. This change was remarkably divisive because, according the diehards, a date on a dive watch is as useless as a screen door on a submarine.
Despite the divided opinions on the Reference 1680, from a non-purist's standpoint, it ticks all the boxes for a tool watch. A sturdy stainless steel case? Check. Robust movement that is dust-proof, shock-proof, and waterproof? Check, check, and check.
Those produced from the mid-80s onwards featured a glossy black dial with hour markers surrounded in white gold, giving the original diver's tool watch a significantly dressier appearance. However, prior to this change (which occurred circa 1984), all Submariner dials were matte black and featured luminous markers without the surrounds. As these age, they patinate brilliantly, making the matte dial Subs much more desirable to collectors and enthusiasts.
This particular Reference 1680 dates from the late 1970s and features a lovely dial with just the right amount of patina to the hour markers. It's been very well taken-care of. More than that, it's been loved--as great a testament to the wearability of this watch.
Putting the utility of a date on a dive watch aside, there's something to be said for a watch with a date function, particularly if you intend to wear it daily. This is is a superb example of an infinitely wearable vintage Submariner, combining the tremendous appearance of the early matte dials with the added functionality of a date display. We can think of no better companion for daily life.
Stainless steel Oyster case is approximately 39mm (excluding crown). Rolex Reference 1680. Rolex Caliber 1575 Automatic Movement. Circa 1977.
Overall Condition: Stainless steel Oyster case is in good condition, showing signs of light and careful polishing. Rotating bezel is in very good condition with minimal signs of use and wear. Matte dial is in very good condition with fine even patina to the luminescent elements of the hour markers. Hands have been refinished. Original date wheel. Rolex Triplock crown. Rolex case back has some light scratches and tool marks but is in otherwise very good condition.
Includes one 20mm light brown suede strap and two 20mm nylon straps from Crown & Buckle