Marvin is a brand you don’t seem to hear about that often, even though they’re creating some beautiful pieces (in fact, it’s been over two years since they’ve appeared on these pages). Today, we’ll correct that with a look at a model from their Malton Cushion collection.
First, however, let’s take a look at some company history, for those not acquainted with the brand. The brothers Didisheim started up shop in 1850 in Jura, smack in the midst of the Swiss horology map. They had a steady presence as their own independent brand until the 1970s, when they came into the control of an Italian group. In 2002, they became independent once again, and 2007 saw the introduction of their first new designs. In short? You’ve got a “young” company with plenty of history to draw upon.
Now, on to the watch. The specific model we were sent for review is the M188.8.131.52, which is part of their larger Malton Cushion collection. Of the five pieces in that group, the M120 spoke the mostly loudly to me. There’s a certain style that you get from the cushion case, as well as a vintage feel.
Here, I think the styling of the dial, in terms of the tri-tone (orange, white, and black), “stick” hands, and simple (but lumed) indices, further reinforces the vintage feel. In short, it feels like an honest homage to an era. Of course, there are some tweaks that Marvin has made to make the piece their own.
First, take a closer look at the indices, specifically at the 8 o’clock position. It’s easy to miss, but this one is actually red – something they do across the collection. This red also carries over to the underside of the quick-replace strap (another feature that I wish more companies included). Second, we have to turn the 42mm case on it’s side. Rather than going with a smooth “slab” side as many cushion cases do, here, they’ve milled out some metal.
While this doesn’t necessarily lighten things a whole lot, it does make things much more visually interesting, as does the subtle logo that shows up on the left side of the case. On the flip side of the case, we of course have the crown, which features a hex-head shape, which is a nice contrast to all the rounded edges on the case.
Of course, all of the color-coordinated styling in the world won’t mean a thing if the internals of the watch aren’t up to the task. Here, we’ve got a less-common, but still quite capable, Selitta SW200 (you can read what Ariel had to say about the Selitta here; or read up on the movement specs here). In a nutshell: this is a high-beat movement that features a 38 hour power reserve and 26 jewels, equivalent to the ETA 2824-2.
All of this is wrapped up in sapphire crystals front (AR-coated) and back, and a water resistance rating of 50 meters. No, you won’t go swimming with this piece, but it will hold up to you washing your hands or getting caught in the rain. Which, frankly, for most of us watch folks, is more than enough for a non-dive piece.
In the end, I’m really glad I had the chance to see this piece in person. I think it’s a great option for someone who wants a vintage feel, but would prefer to have a modern movement (and construction), rather than picking up a piece from the 60s. If that person is you, you can head to Marvin’s online store and pick yours out for $1380. Or, if you prefer, you could opt for a quartz-driven model, which will bring the price down to $770. Either way, a great looking watch.
Oh, and if you liked what you saw today, keep an eye out on these pages – we plan to have some more hands-on reviews of different Marvin models coming up.