Benthos 500 II Chronograph, The LEGEND Re-imagined

The FlAgship of the Aquastar family

For over fifty years, the Aquastar Benthos 500 chronograph has remained the paragon of capability and dive watch collectability — a star in watchmaking, both for its unique functionality and design, and a true collectable due to the rarity of the surviving examples. However, since the brand’s triumphant re-launch in 2020, the modern Aquastar catalogue has been missing this revered, and sought-after vintage icon, but not without good reason: there have been no modern center-mounted chronograph movements commercially available for watchmakers to utilize. So in collaboration with La Joux-Perret, Aquastar rebuilt this key functionality, exclusively for its debut in the Benthos 500 Founder’s Edition.


Case: Aesthetics of the original Benthos 500 from 1970, Height reduced to 15.4mm
Dimensions: 42mm 316L Stainless steel (47mm lug-to-lug), 22mm lugs, Pusher at 2:00, Crown       at 4:00
Movement: Caliber 1MPS Swiss-made Top grade, hours, minutes, seconds and center 60                minute counter
– Water resistance: 200 meters, 660 feet
Crystal: Flat, triple-coated AR sapphire
Dial: Semi-gloss Black, applied hour markers with high density SuperLuminova filling
Bezel: Unidirectional 120 click rotating elapsed time ceramic bezel with SuperLuminova filled         application
Straps: Includes genuine 22mm ISOfrane Rubber, BOR stainless steel bracelet with integrated     endlinks available in July 2024
Retail price: $3,790 (Pre-Order Price: $2,790)
Limited Edition: Founder’s Edition limited to 300 pieces worldwide

Benthos 500 II Chronograph

The most requested Aquastar model in our extensive archives

This muscular new dive watch offers not only a striking visual tribute to the 1970 original, but a functional tribute as well, being powered by a new modified La Joux-Perret mono-pusher chronograph movement developed exclusively for Aquastar which reproduces the vintage Benthos’ unique center-mounted 60 minute totalizer display. The new Aquastar Caliber comes in Top excution and offers a 60 hour power reserve.

Benthos 500 II, the icon reinvented

While the stainless steel case of the Founder’s Edition retains the signature 42mm tonneau silhouette of the original 1970 Benthos 500, the ergonomics of the modern interpretation have been improved in three key areas to increase overall wearer comfort, starting with the overall thickness of the case, which has been reduced to 15.4mm. Furthermore, the lugs have been subtly re-shaped and gently turned downward to lower the center of gravity of the case head as it sits on the wrist. Finally, the chronograph pusher has been relocated to 2:00 — a more natural position for easy actuation (start/stop/reset) by the index finger when the watch is worn over the left wrist, even with neoprene diving gloves on. Of course, true to Aquastar form and function, this pusher may be activated even underwater — a signature utility of Aquastar’s modern dive chronographs.

jacques mayol:

The Dolphin man

Over his diving career there were a number of excellent dive watches that Mayol could have relied on, but his preference was Aquastar and he relied on several several Aquastar models including the Deepstar, Benthos 500, the 63 and Regate.

Jacques Mayol was a French diver and the holder of many world records in free diving. Mayol was one of the screenwriters and authored the book Homo Delphinus: the Dolphin Within Man of his philosophy about the aquatic origins of humans. On 23 November 1976, at 49, he became the first free diver to descend to 100 meters (330 ft), and when he was 56 he managed to descend to 105 meters (344 ft). During the scientific research phase of his career, Mayol tried to answer the question of whether man had a hidden aquatic potential that could be evoked by rigorous physiological and psychological training. Mayol’s lifelong passion for diving was based on his love for the ocean, his personal philosophy, and his desire to explore his own limits. During his lifetime, he helped introduce the then-elitist sport of free-diving into the mainstream. His diving philosophy was to reach a state of mind based on relaxation and yoga breathing, with which he could accomplish apnea. He also contributed to technological advances in the field of free-diving, particularly improving assemblies used by no-limits divers. He was also instrumental in the development of scuba diving’s octopus regulator, which was invented by Dave Woodward at UNEXSO in 1965 or 1966. Woodward believed that having safety divers carry two second stages would be a safer and more practical approach than buddy breathing in the event of an emergency

Jacques Mayol wearing an Aquastar Benthos 500