Get your wallets ready, because I’m about to show you something very cool and very well-priced that I have a feeling is going to sell out quick. Introducing the Makara Octopus, a chunky tool diver available in either bronze or steel with your choice of black, green, brown or blue dial. These beastly watches pack domed sapphire crystals with A/R coating, sapphire bezels, Miyota 9015 automatic movements, applied markers, C3 SuperLuminova and a shocking pre-sale price tag of $375 for bronze or $295 for steel… Picked your jaw up off the floor yet? Well then, it gets a bit tastier with the fact that each variety is limited to 50 pieces.
Now, we’ve seen the occasional shockingly low-priced watch before, but never in bronze, never with a sapphire bezel, and I don’t think with quite as unique of a case design. The Octopus, as you might have already guessed, is Makara’s first foray into the boutique watch business, and clearly they are going for impact and cult status… Which I don’t think they’ll have trouble achieving. Nadim, the man behind the brand (and avid reader of worn&wound), was cool enough to send us over a prototype to try out and share with our readers.
To be clear, this watch isn’t in its final form and has several elements that will change. Most are slight proportional details, like longer second and hour hands, signed crown, etc… The biggest difference will be in the color of the CuSn8 bronze, which is copper heavy in the prototype. As such, this isn’t a review, or hands-on (one will follow when finished watches are available) so much as our initial impressions, and an excuse to take pictures of something cool.
I was eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Octopus as this is the first time someone offered us a prototype to check out (thanks Nadim!) and because photos of the watch indicated that this was something a bit different and special. When it arrived, I was immediately impressed by the design. Not for the faint of heart, the 44 x 52 x 16.5mm bronze case has a remarkable weight to it. The angular and architectural design, draws you in. It looks the way a tool diver should; bulky, meant to withstand blows, a piece of equipment.
From above, the bold bezel dominates the show, followed by tall applied markers and finally the octagonal facets of the case itself. Clarity and legibility were not sacrificed in any part of the design, which is great to see in something that is quite stylized. The watch looks sharp despite its massiveness, like a cross between a Lamborghini Aventador and a tug boat, yet no edges protrude or seem like they would snag.
Strapping the watch on for the first time seals the deal. I’ve said it before, but I’m not a big watch guy, yet here I am finding this 44mm case wearing well and looking very cool on my wrist. The proportions of the case, being wide yet not too long, make it fit, and the geometric shape sits well. It’s masculine, feels good and is easy to wear.
Glancing at the dial, the mix of classic markers and plongeur-esque hands (over-sized minutes typically in orange, smaller sword hours and a stick seconds with lumen square) is handsome and fuss free. While less original than the case around it, it works and looks right. Similarly, the bezel insert takes design cues from the Omega Plo-Prof. The sheen of the sapphire insert sets off the rugged, semi-patinated, bronze around it, making for a great confluence of materials.
And… I’m going to stop there. Not because I don’t have more to say, but to save it for the full-review we’ll do when the final watch arrives. But to sum up what I know now, the Makara Octopus seems like the real deal. It’s certainly one of the best priced bronzos out there right now, and given the abundance of sapphire and the Miyota 9015 inside, this is bordering on a steal. Considering the limited nature of these, if you find yourself with that indescribable panic of “must-have-it” grasping you right now, you might want to just jump on it. The pre-sale prices also wont last forever, likely just another month, at which point they still will be very well priced at $495 for bronze and $395 for steel.
Ok..one last thing, the case back has a really awesome etching on it of tentacles enwrapping a diver’s helmet in sort of woodcut style… another little detail that adds character and value.