Let’s face it, even if you never dive a day in your life, there is something magically magnificent about dive watches. Especially the ones that are built solid like a tank and can withstand depths that are not humanly possible. Yes I take my dive watches into the ocean, no I won’t be breaking any dive records but that still doesn’t hinder my love and appreciation of my watch that can go much, much deeper. Adds a coolness factor to the watch in my honest opinion. The Ocean7 LM8 is a watch that appears to be built solid like a tank and the specs suggest it to. The stainless steel case is 45mm x 17mm thick, 56mm L2L and with a lug space of 24mm, with depth rating of 2000m.
Picking up the LM-8 you will immediately feel the heft of this watch. The stainless steel case has a nice combination of brushed and polished finish. The sides of the case are polished and on the non crown side you will see an automatic helium release valve. The crown on the opposite side of the case you will find the well protected crown. The rounded crown guards cover 3/4 of the crown, but the crown is still very easy to grip and operate, thanks in part to the size and large, deep grooves. There is a nice space in between each groove that really allows you to grip and hold the crown itself. The crown is signed with a raised O7 which looks great and is a little destil that really adds so much detail.
The bezel is very hard to ignore. The ceramic bezel inlay is an eye catching detail for sure. The gloss black ceramic hits and plays with the light almost magically. The bezel can be a bit tricky in terms of function. Establishing a good grip on it takes some getting used to when trying to operate it. It clicks unidirectionally. The small triangle/pip nicely lines up with the 12 o’clock position on the dial, as does the 30 with the 6 o’clock position. The numerals on the bezel are cut out with precision. I was a bit disappointed that they didn’t have lume applied to them. At least the pip is lumed though.
The screw down case back features a nice engraved O7 and also features some details about the LM-8 which are also engraved. The bracelet keeps this heavy professional diver balanced due in part to the 24mm width. The end links are solid, but not rounded quite enough as wear the bracelet and end links meet looks off. By off I mean that as the lugs curve down to meet the bracelet/end links the bracelet doesn’t line up to the curve of the lugs. I included a comparison picture so you can see how it would look if this was corrected.
The bracelet does match the case because the top of the links are brushed and the sides are polished. The links are wide and thick a combination that creates a solid bracelet. The clasp of the bracelet is definitely a highlight of the LM-8. Not only does it operate smoothly opening and closing but it also has a two areas that can make micro adjustments. See the picture below that shows both adjustment points. These points ensures a comfortable fit and is very easy to adjust as your wrist swells in the heat you can adjust the fit with no tools. By squeezing the rounded buttons on the clasp it allows you to make the bracelet longer.
The matte black dial on the LM-8 is stunning both in daylight and at night. During the day the dial is quite legible since the hour markers are large that are bordered in polished metal that matches the polished hands. The dial is legible at night because the hands, markers are coated with C3 lume. The lume glows like a flashlight when fully charged, and it lasts throughout the night gradually fading but always legible. Even the second hand has lume which is always helpful. Something else that I like about this second hand well several things actually. One, the second hand is nice and long reaching the inner chapter ring. Two, the tip is orange which helps tremendously in daytime situations. Lastly, the rectangle near the tip of the second hand not only adds detail but like I mentioned earlier has received lume treatment.
The orange tip on the second hand has some nice accompanying detail on the dial. The deatil comes in the form of the printed text as the 7 in Ocean7 is orange and it is loccated below the 12 o’clock position. The other orange detail is the 8 in LM-8 that is located about the 6 o’clock position. There is also a very cool orange arrow that points down towards the 6 o’clock position. Printed quite small directly above the arrow in white is 2000M. Of course this watch can go deep as it is labled a professional diver, this can be found engraved on the inner chapter ring along with Ocean7. These two engravings can only be seen when you hold the watch at certain angles. Looking straight down at the dial you can’t really see the engraved text. There is a date window located at the 3 o’clock position. The date window is bordered just at the hour markers are. The date wheel itself is white and the numbers are printed in black. Personally I would have liked to see a black wheel with white numerals or no date window at all to keep the flow of the dial more consistent.
The LM-8 has an impressive depth rating, a solid case and it is only natural that Ocean7 placed the ETA 2824-2 automatic movement inside. It is an accurate, trialed and tested movement. For an additional $200 Ocean7 will include a COSC upgrade to the movement if you are particular to having more accurate time keeping which are a deviation rate of -4/+6 seconds per day.
The LM-8 is a solid piece that has an impressive depth rating and a nice solid bracelet. This is a large piece that is built like a tank. This is a consistent theme throughout this watch. Yes this watch is large and is heavy but it is surprisingly comfortable. The 24mm bracelet does the balancing act of weight allowing the LM-8 to sit equally centered. For $799 USD you do get a lot of watch for the price. The ceramic bezel is absolutely beautiful and the 4mm thick AR treated flat crystal is so clear that at certain angles it appears that there is no crystal whatsoever.
This is a good value for someone looking for a deep diver, with nice specs, a reliable movement that won’t break the bank at all. There are a few areas for improvement which are having a better finish on the bezel edges to allow for easier grip/operation of the bezel, coat the bezel numerals with lume, and round the end links a bit more. The watch is well constructed and feels very solid. The matte black dial is beautiful and has extreme legibility. I would absolutely have no problems with recommending this watch.
Thanks to Ocean7 and thanks for reading!