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The all new Phoibos automatic diver is definitely a nice addition to their current lineup of dive watches. It is definitely a step up in price, but also in quality. The solid 316L stainless steel case is completely brushed with no errors on my example. The dimensions are also wearable at 42MM x 48MM x 14.5MM. Some
might be weary of a 42MM case but in all honesty with a lug to lug distance of 48 it definitely wears much smaller once on wrist. Id say the design is definitely not a homage of anything else currently on the market, which is a step in the right direction for Phoibos. The great wall is a true dive watch and is also equipped with an automatic helium escape valve which can be seen on the left flank of the case. Now, the watch is 500 Meters water resistant with a screw down crown/caseback - giving you that added security many crave for when submerging a watch underwater.
The dial itself resembles the Great Wall of China - where Phoibos resides from ( Hong Kong ). My model features a metallic like blue dial with bricks layered up and down. The large applied markers themselves are extremely legible and definitely dive watch material - allowing the end user to read the dial at a quick glance. I like the use of Orange borders features on the broad and bold hands as well as the markers themselves. As usual, the Octopus logo is printed in white below 12:00. In terms of lume, this watch excels compared to other brands with 15 layers of X1 grade C3 SuperLuminova applied to the hands, markers, and Sapphire lumed bezel insert. Getting to sapphire, the crystal is a double domed sapphire as it should be at this $500 pricepoint. It also features three layers of under Anti-Reflective coating for increased legibility in sunny conditions. An important element is the bezel action/grip which seems to be really good, with 120 solid clicks and nice grooves surrounding it. You can check out the lume shot below!
A huge upgrade coming from Miyota 9015s and NH35s is the swiss automatic ETA 2824-2 used in this model. As most of you know this is pretty much the go to movement for most decent Swiss Made watches and even some Luxury brands. It features hand-winding, hacking, 4 Hz beat rate, and 26 jewels. It is also fairly accurate gaining around 7-8 seconds per day - which is fine in my book at this price.
Engineer Bracelet or Rubber Band?
Speaking of upgrades and value for money...Phoibos added an engineer style solid steel bracelet featuring a built in micro extension for ease and comfort. It is one of the better ones without sharp edges ( which I have seen from other companies ). The bracelet is self is 22MM and does not taper, but is extremely fluid and does not pinch the hair on my arm. However, being summertime here in NY, I really took advantage of the end fitted rubber strap that comes supplied at no extra cost. It is really comfortable and supple on wrist- especially in a beach/pool environment.
Furthermore, the new Great Wall by Ethan and Emily
of Phoibos watch company is certainly a success in my eyes. Some may say the colorways are a bit funky or not in their tastes, but if you are one that likes to explore different color options and palettes - they sure have some neat options to choose from. Overall, the quality and components used are definitely worth the asking price and possibly even more. I really look forward to what they have in their playbook for the coming months.