And here we have one of Ocean7‘s latest creations, their LM-4 model. From what I’ve read, this is a second generation watch, the first being the LM-4 LE model. Aside from it’s good looks, what drew me to this piece is its primary case material – ceramic.
The case itself actually has a steel core to it, but Ocean7 has skillfully hidden this away with PVD and a second bezel, so all you see is the silky smooth ceramic. They state that they like to compare this to how IWC does their ceramic cases:
Their inner steel case is polished and protrudes between the crystal and the case. We took a different approach – ours is PVD coated and hidden beneath the bezel. It is a more complicated construction because it requires a separate bezel that is bonded to the case during final assembly. It is not better, just different – but we like to think that our approach is better.
Of course, this usage of ceramic also makes the watch quite tough, though not necessarily any more lightweight (due to the internal steel case). The screw-down crown and caseback are, by necessity, of stainless steel, but these are PVD coated to match the case.
Covering the generously-lumed (with SuperLuminova) dial you’ve got a domed sapphire crystal that has anti-reflective coating applied to the underside of it. This all makes for a watch that is water resistant to 100 meters. Inside this water-tight package you’ll find none other than the ever-present ETA 2824-2 movement keeping time for you. This, of course, gives you the basic timekeeping functions, along with a small date display window between the 4- and 5-o’clock positions. Finally, you’ll be strapping this onto your wrist with a 24mm “carbon” leather strap (which, I must admit, is my least favorite part of this watch).
All of this can be yours for the very reasonable (when you consider the movement you’re getting, plus a ceramic case) of $949. Of course, if you feel like splurging, you can get a COSC-certified movement for an additional $399. And, if you’re not drawn to the orange markers/lume like I was, you can opt for the White/Yellow C3 lume or a Shadow (read: dark grey) color. Whatever the color, you’d be hard-pressed to find a ceramic encased watch that provides a better value.
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