REVIEW: Hands On With The Squale MATIC Australian Limited Edition

by Matt Clymo

We’ve gone hands on with the Australian limited edition Squale MATIC, sold exclusively through StarBuy. Here’s what we think!

What We Love

  • The green gradient dial
  • Wearability for a large watch
  • Tropic strap is very comfortable in Summer

What We Don’t

  • Crown at 4 o’clock is hard to use
  • Domed crystal reflects a lot of light
  • Not for the faint of wrist

Overall Rating: 8/10

  • Value for money: 7.5/10
  • Wearability: 7.5/10
  • Design: 8/10
  • Build quality: 9/10

Squale may not be a brand you would have heard mentioned too often. It dates back to the 50’s when Charles and Helene Von Buren established the Von Büren SA watch factory in Neuchâtel, Switzerland. Being passionate divers, their focus was on developing watches specifically for underwater use, which at the time in 1950 was 3 years prior to the Submariner and Fifty Fathoms making their debut. However, it would be almost 10 years before they are able to obtain a patent and register the Squale brand name, and then another 3 before their first watches would hit the market in 1962.

The rest as they say is history (quite literally) and today, the brand is still solely focused on dive watches and what you would call a quintessential tool watch. They’re designed for a purpose – to be easy to use and read underwater with maximum legibility and functionality. They’re less a fashion statement, but then again, most watches that are fashionable were originally intended as something else. The form is now greater than the function they’ve been designed for!

Initial Thoughts

The Squale is not a small watch, and at first glance, you feel that it may be too big. And you’d be correct if you don’t have medium to large wrists. The other thing that you notice is the domed crystal. It’s probably the most curved crystal I’ve seen in a piece perhaps ever. This helps with the water resistance of the watch and gives it a unique look. Under the dome is the gradient green dial which makes for a nice aesthetic.

The gradient green dial with the gold-coloured Squale Matic logo unique to this Australian Limited Edition

It’s also presented in a unique Limited Edition box, complete with a steel mesh bracelet and strap change tool so you can swap the tropic rubber strap out should you wish to. It’s a nice touch and a good way to celebrate this Australian Limited Edition. Would I have liked to see something more on the watch to make it more special as an Australian Limited Edition? Yes. But more on that later…

The LE boxed set

The Design

As mentioned in my opening paragraphs, the Squale MATIC is a tool watch through and through. It was designed for divers and underwater enthusiasts, and with this, the brand hasn’t really gone in-depth with refinements. But this is ok, as the watch is all about functionality for people who choose to spend a lot of time in the ocean. It’s the Squale DNA coming through in spades.

The domed crystal is VERY domed. In fact, it’s the most curvature I’ve seen on a piece in a long while. This is done for a couple of reasons. The first being it adds to the rigidity of the piece under pressure – at 600m water resistance, you have the equivalent of 60 atmospheres worth of pressure pushing down on the watch at that depth. The second is it aids in the legibility of the dial underwater. Like a 180-degree fish eye camera, you can read the time very well at a glance from any angle, and when you’re scuba diving in the depths, you’ll have very little in the way of light reflections to hinder it.

The reflection showcases the domed crystal on the Squale Matic

Surrounding the crystal is the 120-click dive bezel. Squale has designed this to be easily gripped, and this is evident via the thickness and the knurling on the sides. It also has locking screws on the side so it doesn’t easily get displaced, similar to Breitling models. It’s just another security measure to ensure that nothing can interrupt timing a dive. The one thing I will say is the lack of numerals on the bezel. For me, as a dive watch, these are important should you be using it for its intended purpose. It’s much easier to set your dive time and work back your remaining time with numbers than trying to work out how long you have left with markers. However, like most dive watches, the owners are never going to need this functionality, so it’s most probably a moot point.

The dive bezel is easy to use, but numerals could have added to the functionality

The one major design element you will notice is the screw-down crown at just past 4 o’clock. Now this is a design that many other brands have, think about any of the Seiko Divers out there and even Grand Seiko, the Tudor Black Bay P01 etc. This is done for comfort and security, however, with crown guards prominent these days, it’s more comfortable not having a crown dig into the wrist and design heritage I feel.

The crown at 4 o’clock for safety and comfort

The way Squale has designed the case however is embeding the crown into the lug, which does add to the security of the crown, but it did make it awkward to use when on the wrist. Furthermore, it’s not actually at 4 o’clock, but a little past it so you do need to take the watch off if you want to change the time easily, which admittedly I do, but sometimes you want to make a time adjustment on the fly and this makes it hard to do so. A small quibble really.

You can see how it’s embedded into the lug

Outside of this, the case is brushed most of the way around, and the lugs are finished with some polished beveling to add a bit of finish to the case. Whilst it’s not to a level of other brands, nor should it be for the price. Remember, it’s there to do a job, and this piece is one that isn’t designed to sit in a safe or be babied.

You can see the finishing on the lugs in this shot

How It Wears

I referenced this at the start, it’s not a small watch. Measuring 44mm in diameter, it’s also 16mm thick and 51mm lug to lug. I’ve 17.5cm wrists and I can pull this off I feel, but just. My tastes are a little smaller these days compared to the days where I would rock at 48mm Breitling Super Avenger (Ah youth!) but I still have a few larger watches like the Panerai at 44mm (similar in dimensions to the Squale) and my Sea-Dweller which is a little smaller and thinner. For me, around the 41mm mark is perfect, but if the watch calls for it, I’m happy to go up a size or two!

From a third-person perspective, it sits well within my wrist and doesn’t overhang it.

The case design helps with the wearability of the Squale, as it has a relatively flat case back and tapered lugs and somewhat hugs the wrist. This helps with the overall profile of the watch, and when you see it from side-on, yes it’s thick, but a few millimeters of this is in the domed crystal. You can see from the pic below how it sits on the wrist flat and snug. And this is how you want to wear it, not loose as the case will just overbalance on the wrist, especially with the strap on.

Flush and comfortable.

Having it on the tropic strap also helps, as it’s super supple and bends and curves to the wrist without any resistance. The strap is well done with just the right amount of detailing. Squale has done the right thing here and done a nice tropic strap over a plain rubber one. The one aspect of some OEM rubber straps is the lack of detail on them, and then the prices some brands charge for a basic flat, plain rubber trap. Please if any watch brands are reading this and charge $300+ for a rubber strap, then maybe think about the design and style of the watch and see what you can do with the rubber to add to the watch, not take away from it.

The black tropic strap with the steel pin buckle with Squale logo

The piece as part of the Limited Edition comes with a steel mesh bracelet as well, but due to it being not sized to my wrist, I wasn’t able to test it out. What I will say is that handling it, it’s solid and being part mesh and part steel links, gives for a unique look and won’t be coming off the wrist anytime soon.

The Movement

Squale has opted to go with a Sellita SW200-1 mechanical automatic movement with a frequency of 28,800VpH / 4Hz and uses 26 jewels. For me this works fine as at the $2500 price point, you can’t expect to have any in-house movement unless of course, the watch is at the lower end of a large group of brands, like Swatch. The movement has a power reserve of 38 hours, which is probably on the lower side these days. Even for a Sellita or ETA movement, 42 hours should be the minimum with movement technology and advancement nowadays.

The screw-down case back is Squale through and through

The movement is hidden behind the screwed down case back, which showcases the credentials of the watch, with the Squale Logo across the inner, the 600m water resistance (60 ATMOS) and the limited edition number. In this instance, it’s No. 75 of 100 produced.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the Quale MATIC Australian Limited Edition is a solid watch, both literally and figuratively. It’s an unmistakable divers watch that has been designed for utility and purpose, so it should be viewed through the lens and not compared to other more expensive dive watches that are now more fashion statements than tool watches. It’s also something a little more unique, as you don’t really see too many of these in the wild or popping up for sale, perhaps due to the aforementioned robustness of the piece.

Whilst it is a large watch by many people’s definition, it wears better than the specs suggest. I had no issue pulling off this on my wrist, but I’d not recommend this piece to anyone who’s got much smaller wrists than mine. Champs did wear this as well and his wrists are about 1cm smaller and it fits his, but just. However, over a wetsuit and diving the wrecks off the coast, then this is probably the watch you want on your wrists.

The one question I do have is this: Is this piece value for money? Whilst this is a totally subjective question, I’d say compare this to some of the Seiko Prospex pieces out there such as the SBP439 GMT Diver for A$2,700 and the SPB375 PADI Special Edition for A$1,900 and I’d say it fits somewhere in here. Whilst these are only 200m divers, and not Swiss Made, they do have 70 hour power reserve and are slightly thinner (and smaller in the case of the GMT) with a Seiko movement. So it’s not quite apple with apples. On the Swiss side, then perhaps a DOXA would be a more fair comparison, like the DOXA 600T Caribbean. Very similar in specs and sizing, and the price is around the same too. I’ll leave this part up to you.

Number 75 of 100

The fact that this is a collaboration with StarBuy, and sold exclusively through them is a great initiative and the use of the green and gold colours on the dial, with the limited edition number on the inner case between the lugs is a nice touch and one that makes you feel just that little bit patriotic. If you’re in the market for a watch with some wrist presence, and want something that you won’t see at every get-together or out on the street, or you’re an outdoors person and love the water, then the Squale MATIC Australian Limited Edition could be the watch for you.



  • Case dimensions: 44mm diameter, 16mm thick, 51mm lug to lug
  • Case Material: 316L Steel in brushed and polished finishes
  • Dial: Gradient Black to Forrest green dial with gold logo
  • Crystal: Double domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating
  • Movement: Sellita SW200-1 Automatic movement, 26 jewels and beating at 28,800VpH / 4Hz
  • Water Resistance: 600M / 60ATM
  • Power Reserve: 38 hours
  • Strap/Bracelet: Black tropic rubber strap with pin buckle and steel mesh bracelet with folding clasp

Australian Recommended Retail Pricing: A$2,595

Availability: Exclusively available at

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