Style / World of Watches (WOW)

A star of the seas: Mido Ocean Star collection

The brand offers a thoroughly modern, surprisingly affordable dive watch in a genre which has grown increasingly retrospective

Dec 17, 2017 | By Jonathan Ho

When it comes to diver or diving watches it has been a genre of watchmaking which goes back almost 200 years of evolutionary tinkering. From the first one off pieces built for “explorers” in the early 19th century to those industrially produced for military and professional distribution at the turn of the 20th century, the depth of history to tread has inevitably led to design cues which are unmistakably retrospective.  Enter Mido Ocean Star.

A diving watch, also commonly referred to as a diver’s or dive watch, is, as the name implies, a watch designed for underwater operations with a minimum water resistance equivalent to 100 m or 10 atm. Thus, it serves to mention that the Mido Ocean Star collection beats this ISO criteria easily with 200 meters of water resistance, a robust sapphire crystal and an exemplary calibre with 80-hour power reserve movements which makes its price tag nigh unbelievable.

A star of the seas: Mido Ocean Star collection Review

On the face of things, the Mido Ocean Star enjoys a face of matte black and hour indexes represented by square applied markers for the 3, 6, 9 and 12; with rectangular indexes for the rest; all with cores of white Superluminova. But this is where the Mido Ocean Star departs from your regular diver’s watch – it carries thoroughly modern appeal thanks to the unique hour and minute hands. A narrow stem radiating from the central axis, the hands flare out as if a cricket bat before ending with a three edged tip; partially skeletionised, the hands are lumed for the upper half and feature two distinct finishes – brushed centres and polished sides – it is a great detail, both for the casual onlooker and for the discerning watch collector who understands classic watch decorative techniques.

The case of the Mido Ocean Star enjoys masculine proportions similar to other diving watches on the market but yet again, it acquits itself admirably for its surprising thinness; the 42mm modern diving watch is only 11.8mm thick which lends itself not just to wearability but legibility given that the dial of the Mido Ocean Star is allowed to make full use of the expansive face while including extra ‘date functionality’, largely missing from most other watches of the genre.

While the author harbours a personal preference for the titanium edition with satin-brushed mid case and polished beveled edges, the truth is the two-tone, steel and gold edition accentuates the mid-case with soft lines and contoured lugs which imbue what is meant to be an unabashedly utility tool watch into something closer to a dressy timepiece. While these changes are superficial aesthetic differences, the reality is that Mido has done so impeccably with each variant of the Mido Ocean Star collection expressing a different personality: The steel version comes with a  blue or black dial and in addition to the fore mentioned steel and two tone editions, there’s a rose gold piece accompanied by a black strap.

For its many noteworthy accomplishments, this sub-SG$1600 is equipped with an easily missed yet important detail – a deployant clasp accompanied with a micro-adjust mechanism while not only a necessary addition on a professional diver’s watch, it allows your office desk diver a better fit and once you get a watch bracelet with a micro-adjust feature like this one, it’s really hard to go back to anything else.

Ultimately, the Mido Ocean Star has a clean layout with modern appeal and while it’s respectful to the vintage elements which form the foundation of the diving watch genre, the Ocean Star is a watch that bears some similarity without feeling derivative.

Mido Ocean Star Price and Specs

Case Available in steel, titanium or steel and gold with 200m water resistance
Movement Automatic winding Mido calibre 80 with 80 hours power reserve
Strap Rubber strap or steel bracelet
Price SG$1360 to SG$1600 depending on case material and bracelet options

 

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