If you have been thinking about getting yourself some type of military watch, the Marc and Sons Military Diver probably is not the first watch to come to mind. And if I am being honest, I never would either. So why does this new model have the military moniker? I am going to guess it’s because of the 24-hour scale on the yellow chapter ring and was just a way for them to distinguish this version from the other divers they have released. This model comes in quite a few colorways, and is also available in stainless steel, and has a great spec sheet with a DLC coated case and bracelet, an SW200 movement, a ceramic bezel insert, and of course, what every diver needs these days, a helium release value. Pricing starts at $720.
So, yeah, really nothing military about this Marc and Sons Military Diver, but it is a really nicely made microbrand diver, and there are quite a few things I like about his piece. One, it’s only 12mm thick, yet it is stated as 500m water resistance. I can’t even think of another watch out there with 500m of water resistance that is that thin, which does make me wonder if it really could go to that depth. But as I have said before, I doubt anyone is buying this watch actually to dive with. I don’t mean that as a slight either, the reality is with SOOO many brands out there these days making watches, it doesn’t matter if it is a diver, a pilot, a field whatever, the reality is we are buying them for fashion and telling the time and nothing more. I mean, how many guys are pilots out there? Drones don’t count either fella, but I did see a guy the other day flying with an IWC, and I have to admit it did make me chuckle.
Now you’re probably like Don, what is with the negativity? I am not being negative at all, people confuse being real for being negative quite often. Minus the helium release valve, this is a watch I would absolutely buy myself. It is an excellent size at 42.5mm, its think its black and yellow, it has a beautiful ceramic bezel insert, that is fully indexed and in the case at 42 years old I still can’t figure out 24-hour time, its there on the chapter ring, whenever I can’t, do simple match. All jokes aside, the look of this watch is right up my alley these days, and it has so much that I love about it, especially the dial. But back to the HRV for a min, and if you don’t like rants, you might just want to jump to the next paragraph, but why are these still being put on watches? Why? If you’re reading this and don’t know what I am talking about, please go look it up right now. I will be here when you get back. YOU, yes you reading this, are never going to use it. Helium is not in the water and unless you are a professional saturation diver, YOU are never going to need this valve. It is a pure gimmick, and I wish companies would stop it already.
Okay, with that out of the way, let’s talk about this dial. This beautiful, clean, and slightly unique dial. Sunray pattern, applied indices, a kind of record-looking circle that goes around the dial, the 6 o’clock date with a nice polished frame, and of course the yellow accents, this is a good-looking dial. It uses color, has restraint, is easy to read, and my one and only critique here would be I don’t care for the new swordfish logo Marc and Sons is now using. Yes, it states on their website this is a Swordfish, not a Marlin. I don’t really care either way and am not about to argue with the brand, but I don’t care for logos such as this one the dial. I’m not too fond of it on Phoibos and I wouldn’t say I like it here. I don’t mind it on the case back though.
The case of the Marc and Sons Military diver is well finished, it’s all satin brushed, and that brings me to an interesting point about the DLC coating. A lot of times the DLC coating will be matte and has a somewhat dull look to it, but I mean that in a good way. Here, because of the satin brushing, it is almost a charcoal grey instead of black at times, which is fine and is a good look, but if you were looking for a really black watch, this may not be what you want. It also makes it hard to see the polished chamfer running on the top of the case, which I assume is more prominent on the non-coated steel models. Both the crown action and the bezel action are smooth and sturdy, and though I really never take anything into a pool other than a G-Shock, if you were to take a dip and needed to set the bezel to time the burgers on the grill cause the wife already had a few and it’s only 2 o’clock in the afternoon, it is easy to rotate while also staying in place as it should.
The case back is another downfall of the Marc and Sons Military Diver. It’s not coated in DLC, which makes me scratch my head and the artwork etching is not very well done and the finish that is on the back scratches up easily. Under the boring case back is the Sellita SW-200-1, and I can’t believe I am going to say this, but the website shows that the rotor is signed and it actually has the little swordfish logo as well. This is one of the few times I wish they would have done a DLC surround with the exhibition window showing off the movement rather than the case back they went with.
The lume here is really good, it will not be the brightest in your watch box, but if you rely on luminesce of your watch for whatever reason, such as at a movie theater, or a dark car and you can’t see the 14-inch screen in front of your face, you dropped your phone between the seats again, or you actually decided to go in the ocean for a few hours, I think the lume will suffice.
On my 7 1/2-inch wrist, this really is a comfy watch. The bracelet is your typical oyster-style link, and the claps are your typical rachet extension microbrand clasp, but it all works well and feels good, but the clasp could be smaller, as some brands are doing, and the very inside of the links, where the screw bar goes through, isn’t coated. Neither of these things are big deal at all, but I thought they were worth mentioning. I have to say, this is quite the attractive piece on the wrist, and if you saw the title of the video review, yes it does kinda give off that Breitling Superocean Vibe.
Every once in a while, my review summaries get a little preachy, and that is because some people to this day do not understand what a review actually is, especially in the context of a site like this. It is my entire job to pick apart a watch such as this (or any other that I review), to give you facts and opinions, and to help you decide whether this watch is for you, or something you would NEVER spend your money on. If you were just looking for a spec sheet, the Marc and Sons website will help with that and if you were just looking for me to gush all over this piece because you also own one, well, that’s not the case either.
With that all out of the way, let me make this summary easy. I give this Marc and Sons Military Diver a grade B. I think it is a great-looking piece, has a beautiful dial, a solid case, and bracelet construction, and it’s a good price for all it offers. I could do without the helium release valve though I am more disappointed with the case back, all in all, it is a pretty good watch, sitting right in the sweet spot of most microbrand dive watches, and that’s not a bad place to be at all.
I've been an avid watch lover since the age of 7. Watches are not only my hobby but a passion. My favorite style used to be dive watches, but field or non bezel watches have been growing on me. When I'm not reviewing watches I am either cooking or with family and friends.
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