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  1. Hello everyone !I've got another hands-on review for you guys.Today we’ll be taking a look at the Odyssey 40 Freediver, the most compact diver in BOLDR’s portfolio.The Odyssey 40 Freediver is marketed as a dive watch, created for free divers, with a more ‘purist’ and ‘low-key’ approach in terms of overall styling and design when compared to their other available dive watches.I was fortunate that BOLDR was so kind to send me not one, but two loaner watches that I could use for the review.Please note that this is not an advertisement, I’m simply not able to buy all the watches that I would like to wear, photograph and share my personal experience with.This is a way for me to enjoy my hobby, I’m not getting any monetary benefits out of the content that I share on this platform.That being said; Take.Your.Time and let’s dive in! The Odyssey 40 Freediver is BOLDR’s scaled down approach to its bigger brother, the Odyssey 45, which has a whopping 45mm diameter. However, don’t be fooled… this does not imply that this Freediver version of the watch is inferior by any means.The Freediver would seem like a copy paste of the aforementioned ‘classic’ Odyssey.With the very recognizable sharp edged case which has gotten a smooth bead-blasted finish. However, people who have experienced the classid Odyssey, will quickly see that there have been a lot of tweaks made to this model to suit the compact form factor even better than before. For instance, the bezel insert has been updated with a ceramic option with a fully lumed index.But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Let’s run through the specifications and features this Freediver has to offer. The case is made up out of the typical 316L stainless steel. But for this model, the case has been treated with a bead-blasted finishing giving the steel a very cool satin look. (At first glance it made me think it was a titanium watch … very cool).Additionally to the bead-blasted finish, some of the chamfered edges (side and crown guards) were left high-polished, giving some reflective elements when playing with it out in the sun.The dimensions for this Freediver come in at a compact 40mm in diameter, a thickness of 14mm and a lug-to-lug distance of 48mm. The combination of this short lug-to-lug distance, modest diameter and angular lugs/end-links make up for a comfortable fit, even on my 6,8 cm wrist… although I have to say that it does feel/wear bigger than other 40mm divers.I really like the way BOLDR designed this Odyssey range. The sharp edges of the case (design wise, no problems with sharp edges on the watch that is!) are a design element which is not used often in the dive watch space and makes the Odyssey stand out from thecrowd. The satin bead-blasted finish, with the high-polished chamfered edges work very well in my opinion although I can not decide if I would prefer it over a neatly brushed finish, as the bead-blasted finish also implies that the color of the case is significantly darker when compared to a brushed finishing. At the side we find a signed, semi guarded, screw down crown with good grip provided by the big cut-outs. The Odyssey Freediver is a true and practical diver that can withstand a beating, with its ISO 6425 rating, 300 meters of water resistance, anti-magnetic and shock resistant properties.The dial features an ‘Ombre’ dial with a very well executed color gradient going from lighter at the center of the dial, to a very dark hue at the sides. Adding to the wow-factor of this dial, is the cool grain-effect that has been applied, giving the watch face of the Freediver a lot of depth when gazing into this timepiece. The red and green colorway that I got to enjoy, complement this style very well I must say.At the side of the dial we find the hour markers which have been applied as metallic spheres, accompanied by Arabic numerals and a minute track at the outer edge. Cool detail, the minute track is actually applied on a ring that sits on top of the dial. The color matching (YES!!!!) date wheel is placed at the 6 ‘O clock position, something I prefer over the 3 ‘O clock one. Furthermore, the logo can be found at 12, together with the Odyssey Freediver branding and the 300m water-proof statement just above the date wheel.Legibility is outstanding as the white numerals and the hour-/minute-/seconds hands are treated with a good amount of BGW9 which make up for incredibly bright lume.This all is topped off by an AR-coated sapphire crystal. The Unidirectional bezel with ceramic inlay has a crisp rotation, without any significant backplay. The ceramic inlay features a 60 minute track which is also completely lumed. Each inlay has been color matched perfectly to the dial and really complements the watchface. Boldr has chosen a neat design for the cut-outs of the bezel, giving it a very raw and rugged look.Taking a look at the bottom of this timepiece, we find the custom solid 316L case back which showcases a very detailed ‘Trident Kraken’.This has to be one of the most detailed and well finished screw down case backs that I have seen on any watch (regardless of the price tag) Now onto the bracelet, clasp and... how it wears.The Freediver offers the same 316L, bead blasted, solid stainless steel finish on both its bracelet and clasp with 20mm solid (end-)links at the lugs, tapering down to 18mm at the clasp.The links are easily removed using screw pins and the end links offer quick release spring bars for swift bracelet swaps (if needed… but not really).The signed clasp features a flip-lock, deployant clasp and offers 6 (!) micro adjustments, making sizing up the watch easy-peasy.No diver’s extension though...Both the bracelet and clasp feel very well built without any significant play, while still maintaining enough flexibility for a comfortable fit. All of these aforementioned specifications have made this Freediver a joy to wear. The case really hugs my wrist, while the bracelet flows fluently down my wrist.Make no mistake though, the weight of 198g (all links) still implies the fact that you will definitely feel/experience the watch on your wrist, even with its compact dimensions.It does make me wonder how (uncomfortable) the original 45mm Odyssey would wear (even on bigger wrist sizes).Powering the Freediver, we find the Miyota 9015 series caliber. A reliable workhorse, beating away at 28.800 bhp for a smooth seconds hand sweep, 42 hours of power reserve and a promised accuracy of -/+ 1O-30 seconds per day. I have experienced this caliber several times and i’m aware of the ‘noise’ issues coming from the loud rotor. But honestly, you don’t hear it at all in this watch, which has to be thanks to the solid case construction. Thank you for Taking.Your.Time and read through my personal experience with this watch.If you liked the content, feel free to leave your comments below!Thank you and take care, Michael.
  2. Hi everyone, I just finished my writing down my personal experience with my latest purchase, the Aquatico 'Dolphin'. As always, i'm love sharing my experience with the watch community and look forward to your feedback. Thanks and take care, Michael. Unboxing and first impressions With a lot of enthusiasm, but a lot less patience I awaited the delivery of my brand new diver. A week passed, the postman ringed the doorbell and presented me a quite substantial box. At first glance, I thought this was (yet another) box of kids shoes my wife had ordered. However, taking a quick look at the sender, I was pleasantly surprised that this package was sent by Aquatico, followed by an awkward ‘YES!’ while the mailman was getting into his car. With a lot of joy, I discovered a nice wooden box, with the Aquatico logo applied on the lid (looks a bit like it’s burned into the wood, a very nice touch). The inside houses high density foam with the necessary cut outs for all the goods: (unsigned) warranty card, manual, the watch and a complementary rubber strap. At first glance, I really like what I’m seeing. The combination of that beautiful orange dial with the brushed metal framing works so well, resulting in a very good looking watch. The case gives me somewhat Rolex Submariner vibes, while the full metal bezel makes me think about the explorer. Having it in my hands, the nice compact dimensions really stand out as a sub 40mm dive watch is quite special. I’m happy with the color, everything seems to work just fine and I do not notice any obvious quality issues at first glance… Looking forward to getting this baby on my wrist! Let’s dive in … specifications Like I said before, the case design has very strong Suby vibes, but in a much more compact form factor with 39mm in diameter, 12mm in height and lug-to-lug distance of 46mm. The 316L Stainless steel case is finished with both polished and (vertically) brushed parts. The side of the case is polished consistently without any ghosting or scratches upon arrival. When looking at the watch from the side, you can see a lot of curvature has been put into the case and lugs, adding even more to the compactness of the watch. At the 3 ‘O clock position we can find the branded screw down crown which is protected by fully brushed crown guards. The top part of the case is brushed in a vertical manner (matching the brushing on the bracelet). Brushing has been applied delicately and not to coarse. The full 316L stainless steel coin edge bezel, is machined very smooth, with a full 316L stainless steel bezel insert. The insert is circularly brushed and features the typical ‘submariner’ (10-)minute markings which are embossed. When taking a closer look, you’ll see that the bezel is constructed out of two parts: the top polished part with engraving for better grip and a lower part with isn’t as wide but does show a nice brushed effect. This watch promises a crisp bezel action with a 120 click uni-directional rotation. The funky pastel colors math the styling of this watch well. Out of the bunch, I liked the yellow dial the most, but that’s something personal of course. The hourly markers are printed and coated with a good amount of BGW9 superluminova. I like how the rectangles and circles, which make up the indices, are framed with a very fine black line. Furthermore, there is a minute track in black printed lines at the outer edge of the dial and the mentioning of the Aquatico’s logo together with mentioning of 300 meters of water resistance. The date window is placed at the 3 O’ clock position. The date window is outlined with a fine black line and features a white background and black lettering. The Dolphin’s hands are clearly based upon the legendary ‘Mercedes’ hands which can be found on most of the Rolex Submariner hommages. The Hour and Minute hands have a brushed finis and feature the same WBG9 superluminova to improve legibility in the dark. The second hand is painted in orange and also has a lumed pip. Sitting above the dial is a piece flat sapphire glass, coated with an anti-reflective coating at the inside. An AR-coating is always a positive addition to a budget watch, but the matte finish of the complete dial (dial background, printed indices, date window) already make up for very good legibility during the day. The case back of this Dolphin showcases is a solid 316L stainless steel piece, screwed in for maximum water resistance, with the dolphin-riding-mermaid. I always enjoy and appreciate customized case backs, they add so much personality to a watch. This Aquatico Dolpin timepiece rocks an oyster style (316L SS) bracelet with solid (end)links which can be removed easily with the standard pin-and-collar system. The bracelet tapers down from 20mm at the lugs to 16mm at the clasp. The links are brushed (top/bottom and sides) with the same attention to detail as seen on the case, which provides a very nice overall finish. The clasp is a fully milled fold-over clasp with safety release, which is also very compact, taking into account that it’s only a bit over 3 cm’s long. Furthermore, the clasp houses 4 micro adjusts for sizing. Finishing is on par with the rest of the bracelet, displaying the Aquatico brand name on top. Powering this cool dive watch, we have the trusty NH35-movement. Most of you guys know the specs of this workhorse by heart, but let me give a quick overview. This budget friendly movement comes in with a beatrate of 21,600 bhp, around 40 hours of power reserve and should run at -20 to +40 seconds per day. More than decent performance for a watch at this price point. As I’m ending my summer holiday and start working again after the weekend I received this watch, I think it’s more than suitable to put it through the test during my day-to-day activities. Let’s see how it manages… Hands-on: The first thing that strikes me when putting this diver on my wrist is the size. Because I have a rather small wrist size of about 16,8 cm’s, a lot of watches (certainly dive watches) tend to show to big. I’m therefore very happy that Aquatico has decided to bring this diver in a compact form factor, with a case diameter of just 39mm, rare dimensions for a dive watch. At first sight, Aquatico did a great job with the overall styling of this watch. The fully brushed bezel and upper part of the case work really well and complement the pastel yellow/orange dial in an outstanding way. When taking a closer look at the finishing of this timepiece, we can start seeing in detail just how much effort has been put into this timepiece. As mentioned before, both the bezel insert and top part of the case display a rather fine brushed effect (Bezel insert: Radial – Case: vertical) which has been executed neatly. In side profile, we observe the high polished finishing of the case’s side walls, crown guard bezel. Normally, I’m not a big fan of polished parts on my watches. They are magnets in terms of scratches, fingerprints and crud. However, on this compact package, I can appreciate the subtle amount of shine that it brings to the overall look of the watch. When dealing with an all metallic watch face (meaning the bezel, bezel insert, case and lugs), it can become a bit over the top quite quickly. But! Thanks to the beautiful pastel yellow/orange this is certainly not the case as it ensures that the watch doesn’t look like a massive lump of stainless steel, dangling on your arm. The dial does not have any reflective effect, but instead features a subtle ‘grainy’ texture. Indices are printed directly on the dial, with a thin layer of BGW9 (white during the day, blue at night) and a neatly applied black outline, making the hourly indices match nicely with the (printed) black minute track. The ‘Mercedes’ minute- and hour hands aren’t anything new. Truth be told, I don’t like this style of hands, my personal preference would go out to sword-styled hands sets. But again, that’s something personal. I do like the brushed finish and the bright orange accent of the seconds hand against the soft yellow/orange of the dial. Legibility is good. Both the indices and hands set provide decent contrast during the day and the BGW9 is sufficiently bright in the dark, but fades rather quickly.I’m happy to see that Aquatico kept the rest of the dial basic/subtle, not cluttering it with a sh**load of text, logo’s or other gimmicks. The brand-/model name, ‘automatic’ and water resistance statement are the only additions to the dial, which again, I’m pleased with. I really like how the watch fits my wrist. Thanks to the compact form factor and the curvature of the lugs, this watch tightly hugs my wrist, making up for an excellent fit. When I pulled the watch out of it’s packaging, I was somewhat afraid that this bracelet would not be good (at all). Here’s why. When handling the watch, my first impression was that this bracelet feels very light and stiff as the links do not ‘flow’ easily and tend to get stuck on each other due to them being too tight together. However, now that I’ve been wearing the Dolphin for over a week now, I can say that yes, the bracelet still feels light and the links still get stuck. BUT! The bracelet certainly adds to the comfort of wearing this watch. Once on the wrist, all the links follow the curvature of the wrist well and do not cause any issues of pulling the hairs on my arm. Weirdly, the clasp also shows the same ‘issue’. At first sight, it feels a bit light and needs a significant amount of force to open/close. I’m quite sure this will get better over time as the tension of the safety latch and the clasp mechanism will loosen up a bit over time. I’d rather have a tight and secured clasp mechanism which will/might improve as it gets more wrist time, than having a bracelet and clasp with tons of play/flex.Thanks to the 4 micro adjustments, sizing went very easily.Both the bracelet and clasp have the same vertically brushed finish, following the case finish (top), making up for a very consistent visual theme throughout the whole watch. Setting the time using the screw-down crown goes buttery smooth. I have some other watches in my collection with the NH35 movement, but few of them (un)screw/wind/hack/set the time as smoothly as this Dolphin does. The crown offers a lot of grip and offers a sense of robustness when operating the movement. The verdict With the Dolphin, Aquatico has taken a rather bold leap in offering a true dive watch in an unconventionally smaller package, unusual pastel colors and subtle design language. The watch has it’s pros and cons, showing outstanding attention to detail at some points (case/bezel/clasp/bracelet finish) … while dropping the ball on some other issues which i’m sure they are capable of resolving (bracelet and clasp could use some more finesse, which could bring the overall feel/use up to par with the rest of the watch).
  3. Thank you all for the responses. As I mentioned in the article, this watch has already left my collection for my father in law to enjoy. I have some other hands-on articles of the watches in my collection which I think/hope Will get some better reactions. I'll check with the moderator team if I van share the link to my blog or if It van post the articles like I did above. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and talk ton you soon!
  4. Great watches, looking to pick up the new valour chrono, in salmon pink. Soooo tempting.
  5. Thank you everyone for the brutale, yet honest feedback. That is why I write these articles. As mentioned in the review, I really do see some cool elements in this watch, but it's way to big and lacks any finesse. I regret buying it for myself, but my father in law was very pleased with his free watch... So that's ok for me. Luckily it didn't break the bank for me and I tot to have a lot of Fun taking the pictures and writing the review. Thank you all for the comments and i hope my next piece Will fall in your Grace My own pics !
  6. Hi everyone, I wanted to show you guys one of my latest purchases, the 'Mamut' from the in-Denmark-based Arkai. I came across the Arkai brand by coincidence during some browsing on facebook. Normally I’m not really keen on clicking these pop-up ads, but this time something caught my eye. The render showed a skeleton watch with some intriguing design aspects and a fancy looking, integrated bracelet, with an overall design language that could be compared with the AP’s royal oak (I’m talking about design language of course, not the execution of it !). I went over to the website and took a closer look at this timepiece. Somewhat pleasantly surprised by the specifications at this pricepoint and took a pulled the trigger on ordering a silver version. The Mamut didn’t steal its name… this is a huge watch. Weighing in at 220g for the whole package. Case diameter: 42mm (47mm with crown), Thickness: 11mm Lug-to-lug distance: 56mm. This all seems reasonably for a big watch… however. Due to the integrated bracelet design which has fixed male end links, this watch doesn’t wear as ‘compact’ as the specs would suggest. When measuring the eventual end link – to – end link distance, overall dimensions come down to 60 mm. The case is made of 316L stainless steel and features a vertical applied brushed finishing on both the top and side, with polished chamfered edges. The integrated and fixed end links flow in a sharp and angular way from the case down and make up for an interesting design. The signed crown can be found at the 3 ‘O clock position and features a push-pull system. Part 2: I pushed tab and enter by mistake, posting the topic to quickly The bezel has the same vertical brushed finishing, with polished chamfered edges, complementing the design of the case and features cut-outs at the even timestamps (2-4-6 etc…) with screws which should resemble a diver’s helmet. Within the bezel we find the main show of this watch, the skeletonized ‘dial’. The skeleton dial offers an insight of all the underlying mechanisms. When taking a closer look at this setup, you can appreciate the attention to detail and design that went into this watch. The gold accents, jewels and frame on which the movement is fixed make up for a very attractive layout. On the outer edge of the dial you can see the chapter ring with a minute track printed on it. As this watch doesn’t have a physical dial to place the indices, Arkai incorporated the the indices in/on the chapter ring. This was done by machining the chapter ring and the indices in one piece and makes up for an interesting design where the indices pertrude out of the chapter ring and create the illusion that they float above the skeletonized dial. The indices have a decent amount of lume applied for better readability in the dark. The handset on this watch suits the overall design language, with sword hands for the hour/minute hands and an arrow second hand. All of them are lumed. The dial is topped off with a flat sapphire crystal which will offer good scratch resistance. The Mamut features a see-through 316L stainless steel screw down case back, aiding to achieve 10AM of water resistance. The heart of this skeleton watch is a Chinese ‘PTS 7500’ caliber. A ready to use mechanical skeleton movement with 28.800 bph, 75 Hours of power reserve and an accuracy of +/- 30seconds per day. More than half decent specs for the kind of money in my opinion. The bracelet on the Mamut features an integrated bracelet, inspired by the Royal Oak, with brushed links and polished ‘center links’ . The bracelet tapers down from 28mm at the lugs to 22mm at the clasp. As mentioned before, the end links are male and tend to protrude quite a lot from the case/lugs. The bracelet on the Mamut features an integrated bracelet, inspired by the Royal Oak, with brushed links and polished ‘center links’ . The bracelet tapers down from 28mm at the lugs to 22mm at the milled, butterfly clasp.(without any micro-adjustments) As mentioned before, the end links are male and tend to protrude quite a lot from the case/lugs. Once the watch was sized up for my 13.8 cm wrist (removing links with pin-collar system), I was ready to put the Mamut on my wrist. The website states that the watch is comfortably to wear for wrist sizes as low as 14 cm’s. However, this is not really the case in my honest opinion. It’s just too big. It was quite the risk to buy a watch this big with my small wrist size, but I was hoping to pull it off. The main reason that I’m not able to rock this cool watch is the due to the fact that the end links for this integrated bracelet have a ‘male setup’. This implies that the first link of the bracelet doesn’t naturally follow the flow of my slender wrist, making the watch wear even bigger and leaving a big ‘gap’ in between my wrist and the case/lugs. Even though this watch is too big for me, I wanted to wear it for some time to get a feel for the visual aspect of it. It’s gigantic on my wrist… BUT, you know what, I actually like the way it looks. Don’t get me wrong, this watch is not made for my wrist, but if the lugs would be a bit shorter/smaller, in combination with a female setup for the end links, I really think this watch could work on smaller wrists as the dial dimensions are not that extravagant when comparing them to the complete measurements. This Mamut from Arkai has a lot going on. A bold, but well executed design with that good looking Skeletonized setup, a decent mechanical movement and a level of quality/finish that should be expected at this price point. The way this watch is made does not allow it to fit comfortable/correct on smaller wrist sizes which is something you’ll need to take into consideration when buying this watch. Bigger wrists ? No problem! This timepiece will look killer ! that being said: I think Arkai made a very good attempt at (re)creating an iconic skeletonized watch and succeeded in offering decent design, specifications and overall quality at an affordable price tag. However, I really think that Arkai should take another look at the size of the lugs and redesign the end links to a female setup as I think that these adjustments could take this watch to the next level (even if you have smaller wrists) Michael from Trapped In Time Watches Looking forward to your opinions for this timepiece. Thank you and kind regards, Michael.
  7. Hello everyone, My name is Michael, I'm a watch enthusiast and collector and i've been looking for new ways to increase my understanding in horology for some time. Even though you can find, read, view everything about watches online, I do like to connect with people who share the same interests aswel. No better way to do so than joining this community, so here I am. I am currently starting to build up my collection and sharing my personal hands on experiences with these watches on my blog. I will not be blatantly copying the link in the hope to flood my blog with new traffic. This is a mistake that I have made in the past, something I want to apologize for to the admin team and thank them to give me another shot to get started in the right way. We made an agreement that I could share my experiences with you guys, something i'm very grateful for. I'm looking forward to connecting with you guys and hear your thoughts about the watches i've got in store for you ! Kind regards, Michael from Trapped In Time Watches.
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