Watch Review: Ocean7 LM-8

SnapseedLet’s face it, even if you never dive a day in your life, there is something magically magnificent about dive watches. Especially the ones that are built solid like a tank and can withstand depths that are not humanly possible. Yes I take my dive watches into the ocean, no I won’t be breaking any dive records but that still doesn’t hinder my love and appreciation of my watch that can go much, much deeper. Adds a coolness factor to the watch in my honest opinion. The Ocean7 LM8 is a watch that appears to be built solid like a tank and the specs suggest it to. The stainless steel case is 45mm x 17mm thick, 56mm L2L and with a lug space of 24mm, with depth rating of 2000m.

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Picking up the LM-8 you will immediately feel the heft of this watch. The stainless steel case has a nice combination of brushed and polished finish. The sides of the case are polished and on the non crown side you will see an automatic helium release valve. The crown on the opposite side of the case you will find the well protected crown. The rounded crown guards cover 3/4 of the crown, but the crown is still very easy to grip and operate, thanks in part to the size and large, deep grooves. There is a nice space in between each groove that really allows you to grip and hold the crown itself. The crown is signed with a raised O7 which looks great and is a little destil that really adds so much detail.

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The bezel is very hard to ignore. The ceramic bezel inlay is an eye catching detail for sure. The gloss black ceramic hits and plays with the light almost magically. The bezel can be a bit tricky in terms of function. Establishing a good grip on it takes some getting used to when trying to operate it. It clicks unidirectionally. The small triangle/pip nicely lines up with the 12 o’clock position on the dial, as does the 30 with the 6 o’clock position. The numerals on the bezel are cut out with precision. I was a bit disappointed that they didn’t have lume applied to them. At least the pip is lumed though.

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The screw down case back features a nice engraved O7 and also  features some details about the LM-8 which are also engraved. The bracelet keeps this heavy professional diver balanced due in part to the 24mm width. The end links are solid, but not rounded quite enough as wear the bracelet and end links meet looks off. By off I mean that as the lugs curve down to meet the bracelet/end links the bracelet doesn’t line up to the curve of the lugs. I included a comparison picture so you can see how it would look if this was corrected.

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The bracelet does match the case because the top of the links are brushed and the sides are polished. The links are wide and thick a combination that creates a solid bracelet. The clasp of the bracelet is definitely a highlight of the LM-8. Not only does it operate smoothly opening and closing but it also has a two areas that can make micro adjustments. See the picture below that shows both adjustment points. These points ensures a comfortable fit and is very easy to adjust as your wrist swells in the heat you can adjust the fit with no tools. By squeezing the rounded buttons on the clasp it allows you to make the bracelet longer.

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The matte black dial on the LM-8 is stunning both in daylight and at night.  During the day the dial is quite legible since the hour markers are large that are bordered in polished metal that matches the polished hands. The dial is legible at night because the hands, markers are coated with C3 lume. The lume glows like a flashlight when fully charged, and it lasts throughout the night gradually fading but always legible. Even the second hand has lume which is always helpful. Something else that I like about this second hand well several things actually. One, the second hand is nice and long reaching the inner chapter ring. Two, the tip is orange which helps tremendously in daytime situations. Lastly, the rectangle near the tip of the second hand not only adds detail but like I mentioned earlier has received  lume treatment.

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The orange tip on the second hand has some nice accompanying detail on the dial. The deatil comes in the form of the printed text as the 7 in Ocean7 is orange and it is loccated below the 12 o’clock position. The other orange detail is the 8 in LM-8 that is located about the 6 o’clock position. There is also a very cool orange arrow that points down towards the 6 o’clock position. Printed quite small directly above the arrow in white is 2000M. Of course this watch can go deep as it is labled a professional diver, this can be found engraved on the inner chapter ring along with Ocean7. These two engravings can only be seen when you hold the watch at certain angles. Looking straight down at the dial you can’t really see the engraved text. There is a date window located at the 3 o’clock position. The date window is bordered just at the hour markers are. The date wheel itself is white and the numbers are printed in black. Personally I would have liked to see a black wheel with white numerals or no date window at all to keep the flow of the dial more consistent.

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The LM-8 has an impressive depth rating, a solid case and it is only natural that Ocean7 placed the ETA 2824-2 automatic movement inside. It is an accurate, trialed and tested movement. For an additional $200 Ocean7 will include a COSC upgrade to the movement if you are particular to having more accurate time keeping which are a deviation rate of -4/+6 seconds per day.

The LM-8 is a solid piece that has an impressive depth rating and a nice solid bracelet. This is a large piece that is built like a tank. This is a consistent theme throughout this watch. Yes this watch is large and is heavy but it is surprisingly comfortable. The 24mm bracelet does the balancing act of weight allowing the LM-8 to sit equally centered. For $799 USD you do get a lot of watch for the price. The ceramic bezel is absolutely beautiful and the 4mm thick AR treated flat crystal is so clear that at certain angles it appears that there is no crystal whatsoever.

This is a good value for someone looking for a deep diver, with nice specs, a reliable movement that won’t break the bank at all. There are a few areas for improvement which are having a better finish on the bezel edges to allow for easier grip/operation of the bezel, coat the bezel numerals with lume, and round the end links a bit more. The watch is well constructed and feels very solid. The matte black dial is beautiful and has extreme legibility. I would absolutely have no problems with recommending this watch.

Thanks to Ocean7 and thanks for reading!

 

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Watch Review: MARC & SONS Pilot Watch MSF-006-2

 

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Sometimes the smallest detail can standout amongst giants.

This is what happened to me when I first starting to really examine the MARC & SONS Pilot Watch MSF-006-2. The brushed 316 L case is definitely made to impress with it’s shear size of Case: 46 x 52 mm , Height: 14,8 mm, 22 mm lug space. In the white corner, weighing in at 112g, fighting out of Germany, is the MSF-006-2. Some people think that the big watch trend started a few years ago but take a look at the German pilot watch B-Uhr from the 1940’s and you will see that it was 47mm-56mm. Not small at all. Originally worn over flight jackets and the large case offered the pilot extreme legibility.

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The 006-2 case size is impressive and has some noticeable presence. The large screw down crown also adds to the overall presence of this watch. You don’t often see a pilot watch with a screw down style crown. A detail on the 006-2 that is an added bonus. The crown is easy to grip and operate because of its size and gear style edges. The crown isn’t signed but there is a nice amount of detail as you can see in the pic below. The brushed finish on the case gives the 006-2 a menacing, no nonsense look. My favorite part of the finish is on the curved lugs, which is a good focal point to see the brushed finish.

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Flipping the watch over bottom side up there you will find an exhibition case back. One of the first things that I immediately noticed on the movement was the skeletonized rotor of the Miyota 8217 movement. There are a few little details on the 8217 that splash some interesting things to look at which is nice to see. As with most case backs, on the 006-2 you will find some info about the watch encircling sapphire window.

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The dial on the 006-2 absolutely pops out at you as you would expect from a white dial with black numerals/hands. This make dial legibility very optimal. Sometimes the smallest detal can standout amongst giants and that is what the sapphire crystal has done here. This is my favorite detail, not because of it being sapphire crystal but the fact that it is domed. A feature that I am not familiar with typically on a pilot watch, but I absolutely appreciate it here on the 006-2. This also allows for great legibility. The fixed bezel gives rise nicely to the domed crystal giving a completed/finish look.

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At first glance I saw the subdial at 9 which I assumed was a small seconds dial, but after closer examination it is a 24hour indicator which is quite useful for those who travel and for pilots. Yes I get that we live in a technologically advance day that one wouldn’t have to rely on their watch, but those like myself who appreciate the simplicity of yesteryear, it is refreshing to see the past made present. The subdial adds depth and balance to this dial as at the 3 o’clock position you will find a date window nicely bordered in black. The 24hour indcator also features texture with engraved circles/rings and a black printed cross perfectly in the center.

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The text on the dial is kept simple and balanced, Marc and Sons under the 12 o’clock position and automatic above the 6 o’clock position, both printed in black. Then ever so subtly is the MADE IN GERMANY underneath the 6 o’clock hour. The numerals are bold, easy to read and look crisp. Like I mentioned earlier the black just pops off the white dial. The signature of pilot watches there is a triangle with 2 dots on either side that can be found at the 12 o’clock position, which coincides with the rectangles at 3, 6 and 9. I like that the rectangles are included with the numerals and that the numerals weren’t removed thus keeping the dial balanced.

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The 006-2 is comfortable on the wrist thanks to the shorter curved lugs and cushioned-style case. The brown leather strap is decent enough. Thick, soft and with off-white stitching. Nothing special but gets the job done. It has a nice brushed stainless steel in style buckle that is etched with Marc & Sons. I like that the pin is flat and the holes on the strap are rectangular. Adds a bit of different detail on the strap. The strap has 2 keepers on it. For roughly $326 it is a good value for what you get. The superluminova treated hands glow nicely when fully charged. I like that the center of the hands were kept dark instead of using white and it makes for great legibility once again on the 006-2.

The 006-2 is a good value and a nice “little” pilot watch. It has a nice throwback feel to the flieger watches of yesteryear yet gives off a nice modern touch as well. The crown and domed crystal make this a must have for those looking for a pilot/flieger watch on a budget. I would definitely recommend this watch to my friends as I know a few of them were waiting for this review. Rest assured that I believe you won’t be disappointed if you try this watch out.  My only complaint about the watch is the second hand occasionally stutters. I don’t know if this is with every 006-2 or just an isolated occurrence.

Thanks to Marc & Sons and thank you all for reading!

Full Specifications for ease of reference:

http://www.marc-and-sons.com

Case:

Stainless Steel 316 L
Sapphire crystal, antireflective
Glass bottom
Pressure tested up to 10 ATM

Movement :

Miyota 8217

Automatic
21 Jewels
Power Reserve: 42 hours
Functions

Hour, minute, central second, date
Screw down crown
24 hour indicator
Dial & Hands

 

Dial:

White dial
Luminous indexes with Superluminova
Luminous hands with Superluminova
Central second hand
Date

Strap:

Leather 22 mm
Pin buckle with engraved logo
Band length: 21 cm
Dimensions

Case:

46 x 52 mm
Diameter: 46 mm
Height: 14,8 mm
Width of bracelet 22 mm
Total weight: 112g

Movement Specifications:

Brand Miyota (Citizen)
Caliber Number 8217
Movement Type Automatic
Jewels 21
Vibrations Per Hour
21,600 bph
Anti-Shock System Yes
Power Reserve
40+ hours
Winding Direction
Uni-directional (left)
Hacking No
Diameter 11 1/2”’ (26mm)
Height 5.67mm
Lift Angle 49 degrees
Stem 065-212
Functions Hours, minutes, central seconds, date calendar, 24 hr subdial
Country of Manufacture Japan

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