Armida, the Asian-made dive watch brand that brought you the mil-sub inspired A2, has just released a bronze version of their mighty A1. There are a few notable features about the A1 such as its bold but classic styling, 1000m water resistance, and big chunky bezel. But, the feature of the A1 that always stood out to me was its crazy super-domed sapphire crystal, which gave the watch a towering height of 19mm, and an undeniably nautical look.
Well, machine that out of marine grade CuSn8 bronze, and you get a watch fit for a Verne-ian adventure. In fact, it almost begins to lose its “watchness” and becomes pure maritime instrument, which is aided by its 45mm case and oversized 8mm titanium crown at 4. Since it is bronze, it will also get that metals’ tell-tale patina, which is much of the draw of the material. Small spots and stains will grow on the surface as it is exposed to air in unique and unpredictable ways, showing the watch’s age and contributing to that antique tool look that is so appealing. Especially when the watch itself is anything but old, and ready to take some serious stress and daily activity.
The A1 bronze is currently available for $1299 with an ETA 2824-2 movement in 5 colors: all bronze case and bezel with black, blue, green or brown dials and a bronze case with black lumed insert and black dial. Though I love the all bronze look, and the subtly of the dark dial colors, the version I am most drawn to is with the black bezel insert. The matte black combines so well with the warm golden tones of the bronze, creating a less uniform appearance and adding a bit of aggressiveness. Also, functionally speaking, the added lume and contrasting dial markings would make it more practical in a low-light situation.