Back in the fall, we about fell over ourselves to tell you about the new Bulova Oceangrapher GMT (you can read that here). We already liked the Devil Diver, and the inclusion of a traveler GMT complication? That was a great matchup. Recently, we got to spend some time with a loaner, and we’re ready to give you our thoughts on it.

The aesthetics

If you’re familiar with the Bulova Oceangrapher, well, then you’re off to a good start on this version. It’s basically the same design we saw reintroduced a few years back, which was in and of itself a faithful reproduction of the design from decades ago. That means you’ve got plenty of vintage touches, including the the case shape, domed sapphire crystal, and those absolutely delightful slices of Doozer Sticks that are used for the hour indices on the dial.

It’s definitely a distinctive style, and you’re either going to love it or leave it. There are of course different colorways available. While the grey monochrome is a solid option in our book, we think leaning into the design with the blue dial and Pepsi bezel brings a great – and classic – hit of color to the design.

The movement

To add a GMT complication to the design, Bulova went with the Miyota 9075, which is known as a traveler’s GMT. By this, we mean you can quick set the main hour hand (either forward or backward) without touching the minute hand, or the GMT hand. In other words, great for traveling. As we’ve noted before, this does mean that you give up the ability to quick change the date if you let the watch wind down. Rather than moving the date forward in position one, you’re instead clicking the hour hand forward, which then – after a full 24 hours – advances the date disc. A minor thing, but something to be aware of.

What we dig

We mean, aside from the fact that it’s a dive-capable tool watch with plenty of polished surfaces (allowing it to pull double duty as a dressier watch), a delightful vintage feel, and an excellent bracelet with a superb look and feel to it? Well, ok, there is one other thing – a small detail – that we think really elevates the watch. Are you ready for it?

It’s the under-crystal magnifier cyclops on the date window. Not many brands do this, which is a shame. Here, on the Bulova Oceangrapher GMT, it adds functionality to the deign, making it easier to read the date without putting another plane on top of the watch. Here, you get to keep the smooth feel of the sapphire crystal, but all the benefits of the magnification.

Wrapping things up

There are a lot of great vintage looks in the Bulova catalog, but if we had to pick just one from the catalog that we could put on our wrists, it would definitely be the Bulova Oceangrapher GMT (either the blue or grey dial), for the combination of style and functionality. If you want one watch that can do it all – travel, swimming, casual and dress situations – then this is a watch that should be on your shortlist. While the list is $1,350, it looks like it’s on discount for $1,080 directly over at

Tech Specs from Bulova

  • MOVEMENT: 9075
    • Automatic
    • Powered by the release of a wound spring, mechanical movements never require a battery. Automatic mechanical movements have an oscillating weight that winds the spring with the motion of the wearer’s arm.
  • CASE WIDTH (MM): 41
  • LUG WIDTH (MM): 20
  • DIAL
    • Blue, black, or white
    • Luminous
    • Luminous Hands and Markers
    • Bracelet, Stainless Steel
    • Polyurethane
    • Silver-Tone Stainless Steel
    • Rose gold-tone stainless steel
    • Grey stainless steel
    • Safety Fold Over Clasp with Push Buttons (bracelet)
    • Buckle (urethane)
  • CRYSTAL: Double Curved Sapphire Box Crystal
    • GMT
    • Hours
    • Minutes
    • Seconds
    • Date at 3 o’clock

Categorized in:

Bulova, Featured, Reviews,

Last Update: December 27, 2023