Ocean7 LM-5CQ Review
When I first saw the Ocean7 LM-5CQ earlier this year, I instantly fell in love. I was introduced to the watch with the catchphrase: "We dare you to find a quartz chronograph with this level of quality for $380." Seeing as it was an advertisement from the company, I expected this to be a bit of exaggeration and didn't know what to expect when my Ocean7 arrived. Much to my surprise, a few seconds after I opened the box, all my questions were answered. You can read below to find out why. After more examination, I learned that inside of the watch is the Ronda 5020.B quartz movement with a chronograph and big date (left subdial is 30 mins + 12 hours, right is runnings seconds). There are too many functions to talk about here, so here are the Ronda 5020.B instructions.
Case, crown, and pushers
The first thing I do when I get a new watch (after taking the plastic off) is test the functions. I turn the bezel, set the time (if needed), and activate the chronograph (if there is one). These first impressions are vital in my opinion. I must say that this watch left an impeccable first impression. The case was well-finished and the top of the lugs, crown guards and the rest of the case are all polished to perfection. The case is 42mm in diameter (not including the crown), has a lug to lug (length) of around 54mm, and is around 14mm thick (including the domed bezel).
The domed (and lumed) sapphire bezel is tight and has extremely distinct and firm clicks giving one the impression of a well-built time piece. In fact, the bezel is the product of 2 years of research. At the time Ocean7 released the LM-5, the only manufacturer capable of making domed sapphire bezels was working for Blancpain and refused to supply these types of bezels anyone else. After two years, Ocean7's contractor figured out how to produce these unique bezels giving the LM-5CQ a feature that differentiates this watch from others with similar specs.
The LM-5CQ has a screw-down crown. When I started to unscrew the crown, the action was so smooth I thought the crown may have been the push/pull type and not the screw down version as advertised on the Ocean7 website. The next thing I noticed was the pusher action. The action is very firm and distinct. There's no question when the chronograph is activated.
Strap and Buckle
For this review I decided to go with the standard sport strap because I believe that will the LM-5CQ's most popular strap. The strap, although it works very well, is one of the watch's weaker features. Don't get me wrong, it's a nice rubber strap with a good texture and fit, but the moulding lines are very visible and there were pieces of excess material from the molding process that was not fully removed. This, however, doesn't affect the function. The strap is 22mm wide and doesn't taper.
Since I have had the watch, I have probably accumulated around 9 hours of actively swimming. It has remained securely strapped onto my wrist throughout the duration. The polished buckle is nicely crafted and certainly isn't flimsy. It looks great but, unfortunately, it scratches quite easily. However, this is a small point and the watch's function should not be overshadowed by it's appearance.
Dial and Hands
The dial is very important to the look of any watch and its vital that it be well-designed. I must say that Ocean7 made some nice design choices. The reverse panda dial gives the watch a classic look and the silver subdial provides excellent contrast and definitely makes reading the elapsed time much easier.
The Ocean7 logo, although it can look large in some pictures, is anything but obtrusive. If there was one complaint it would be the color of the hands and markers. I don't really mind, but I do wish they weren't so green. Of course, that is one downside of C3 superluminova. The upside is, of course, the bright and slow-fading glow.
The packaging on this watch is ridiculously good. Sure, packaging doesn't determine the quality of a timepiece, but this packaging is the nicest I've seen on a watch in this price range. The package consists of an outer sleeve, a cardboard box and then the inner box.
The outer sleeve and cardboard box aren't anything special on their own. However, they are of good quality and add suspense when opening the watch. Both sport the Ocean7 logo.
After removing the other packaging, this is revealed. It is definitely a solid box and is somewhat heavy. Inside of the box is a piece of foam to keep the watch from moving during shipping.
Also included is a warranty card (filled out with date of purchase, serial number, etc.), microfiber cloth, instructions (not on the movement), etc. All of these are pretty regular among all watches. Another thing to make this watch stand out from the rest? How about 2 temporary tattoos of the Ocean7 logo.
Since some people don't care about packaging, and it doesn't really affect anything, it won't receive a score.
On the Wrist
The watch is comfortable on the wrist, but it does restrict the motion of my hand.
Overall Score: 29/30
Ocean7 classifies this watch as a "dress diver", and rightfully so. This watch includes features found on other "dress divers" such as the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms. For example, both watches feature domed sapphire bezels and a similar hand set. Despite these similarities, this watch is nothing like the Fifty Fathoms. The entire design is different. Markers, bezel (design), case, chronograph, case back, water resistance (the Ocean7 LM-5CQ is WR to 100m), date display, strap, dial, basically everything. I don't have to list all of these things, but I want to accentuate how original the design is. Let's just say that this is a great price for a high-quality, Swiss Made watch and I can't wait to see more classic designs like this from Ocean7.
Please note that I received this product free of charge.
Please note that all scores are given relative to the price of the watch.
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