First off this is a watch purchase I researched and researched in my quest to find the ultimate in value and quality. I looked all over the web and I consulted with various "authorities" on watches. My cousin who owns 4 Rolex's to include a Daytona and a Panerai, and who aspires to be a Horologist when he finally retires, knows a few things about quality. I spoke with him regarding my purchase, but he didn't know much about Orient. I on the other hand had studied the company and after reading all the reviews, both positive and negative, the positives were far and away more impressive and convincing. So after careful consideration I pulled the trigger a few weeks ago and today my new treasure arrived.
First impression: Not much. The lighting was horrible and I had a horrible day so I was just happy to get it. Not until after I had the time to carefully look at and feel it did I come to my current thoughts about my purchase.
Second impression: Solid. This thing is built solid. It just feels nice. A few shakes and it started to purr along. Very nice to see the second hand just marching around the dial ever so steadily. This brings me to the most impressive thing, the dial! I will let these pictures speak for themselves.
but this one shows the subtle beauty the deep blue face possesses!
I find myself looking at it more and more. It really is mesmerizing!
So I really wanna wear it so I try it on. My wrist is a bit small so it must be adjusted. I am sad to report that I had to remove 3 links and do a few micro adjustments to get it to fit. It is comfortable. I expected it to dig into my skin as I have never owned a watch with steel bracelet. Not so however.
Clasp: I have read how it doesn't seat very easily. I agree, it takes some work to get it to fit, but it does not take an annoyingly large amount of effort to fasten it.
Finish: The polished sides of the case and the polished sides of the bracelet shine brilliantly. I just find myself wanting to clean off the prints constantly! I think it is a nice contrast to the brushed steel as well.
The crystal: It is mineral so I don't expect it to hold up too well to scratches, but I am not planning on using this as an everyday beater watch that takes a pounding like my Vicky Swiss Army, not that that is a beater but the sapphire crystal can take the beating and still looks awesome. The crystal on this one looks nice right now, but I reserve full judgment until it gets a little wear and tear. For now it does not take away from the impression.
The Case: Nice subtle diver figure, sculpted by the water as one descends to the depths! Sorry, I had to wax poetic. It does remind me of a swimmer as it is nicely curved as if it was done by a fluid of some sort. The contrast of polish on the sides and brushed everywhere else is a nice compliment to the bracelet.
Crown and pusher: They work nicely and screw out and in very smoothly. The time and date sets very easily and smoothly, but you can't go in reverse for the date. Not a biggy, but also not what I expected. The pusher easily flips through the days, alternating from English to Spanish.
The Bezel: I save the worst for last. It is very hard to turn. Once you figure a decent method of moving it it is a little easier, but I don't like it. It is functional, by my Vicky glides. Not like a Seiko "monster" but still nice and firm, but smooth. This bezel is as smooth as sandpaper. I do not exaggerate. I am sure it will free up as I use it but for now this is the big knock on the watch!
Now for the pleasant surprise: The lume. Yes, a "monster" is better. Yes, Tritium tubes are superior. However, I had heard the lume was horrible. Not so fast my friends. The picture was taken after I held it to a bulb for 30 seconds and allowed it to sit for about 1-2 minutes:
I used no flash and the camera had a tough time in the dark, but it was brighter than you see. With a full charge it might go much longer. Even now, with no real light source, it still glows a little.
The final analysis: I would give it a 10 based upon sheer quality and value (I paid $117 from Amazon) however I take away one point for the bezel (it isn't as big a deal to me because I am not a diver) and 1/2 clasp. Out of 10 I give this baby an 8.5. If the Bezel was a little better I would give it a 9.5, just based upon quality/value. I have no idea of accuracy as I just got it, but if you want a good quality and affordable watch... pull the trigger on an Orient Blue "Mako".