We’ve been very interested watching the pendulum swing from super-large watch cases over to more compact and restrained designs. Sometimes a smaller watch just fits your wrist better, and is more comfortable – no harm in that. One of the latest to embrace that is the 37mm Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz.

If you recall, we first told you about the Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz back in May (right here), and recently were able to get a loaner in to spend some time with the diminutive diver. With stuff that’s a bit of a break from the norm (and like it or not, sub-40mm cases are not the norm right now) there’s always a question you need to answer – sure, you like the idea of a smaller case, but do you actually like wearing it?

The first thing you’ll notice (or at least, I did) the 37mm Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz is visually a lot smaller than you’d think. I had just gotten done wrapping up a 38mm review and even so, the difference was noticeable to my eyes. Not that it’s a problem, but just bear in mind if you’re used to 40+ you will notice the smaller diameter. That said, the thickness of the case, especially for a quartz watch, is a bit more than you’d expect, so it throws the proportions off a bit.

Then again, that’s only if you’re looking from a 3/4 angle and really paying attention. While it would be awesome if they could slim it down a touch, it’s not a deal breaker sort of a thing. Once you’ve got the Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz, it’s a rather light and comfortable affair. Particularly if you get it with the NATO-style strap (with the leather-reinforced tang holes). Just note, if you have a larger wrist, that strap end will not reach the second keeper (I experienced that on my wrist). Then again, this watch probably isn’t aimed at those with larger wrists.

Wearing the Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz around the office – I mean, the home office – it was a very capable everyday sort of a watch. It’s super-legible with indices and hands that are very generously sized for the smaller dial, and you get that small pop of color with the pale blue used on a quarter of the bezel insert.

While the Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz is perhaps not a watch I’d get for myself just based on fit, I think those with smaller wrists will be appreciative of the option that this watch provides. It’s available on the nylon strap as we tested it here for $495, or you can get it on the bracelet for $545. As always, I’d recommend the bracelet, as finding aftermarket straps is much easier than a bracelet, especially given the 18mm lugs on the watch. I won’t say that this is a watch for everyone, but for the right wrist, I think that you’ll be very pleased with the piece. hamiltonwatch.com

Review Summary

  • Brand & Model: Hamilton Khaki Navy Scuba Quartz
  • Price: $495 ($545 on bracelet)
  • Who?s it for? Anybody – man, woman, or child – that wants a competent diver that doesn’t look like a dinner plate on a smaller wrist
  • Would I wear it? While I do like sub-40mm cases, this one just never quite clicked with me
  • What I?d change: For it’s diameter, the thickness of the case throws the proportions off a touch – I’d see if that couldn’t be slimmed down
  • The best thing about it: It’s unabashed compactness

Tech Specs from Hamilton

Case37mm stainless steel; 18mm lugs
DialGrey or black dial
HandsNickeled hour, minute and second hands with Super-LumiNova?, w
BraceletGrey or black NATO strap with pin buckle Stainless steel bracelet with folding clasp
GlassSapphire crystal
Water resistance10 bar (100 m)

ByPatrick Kansa

A big data developer and leader with a penchant for gadgets, books, watches and beverages. You can find my work on WristWatchReview, Knapsack.News, and Slushpile. If you're on Twitter and/or Instagram, you'll find me there as @PatrickWatches.