Manufacturer: Dificiano Watches | Price: $399 USD (£305 GBP, €359 EUR approx)
I reviewed the grey & blue prototype of the Dificiano Marlin back at the start of September 2019. I really liked the prototype and I remember the watch doing extremely well in my review. The Dificiano Marlin has always been at the back of my mind since, and I was very tempted to buy one, but ever since I first seen the different range of colours, I always fancied the Silver Sunray version. I decided to reach out to Dificiano to see if they’d send me out a full production model for me to take another look at, and ofcourse to see if it is still the fantastically built microbrand that the prototype was.
- Dimensions: Diameter – 41.1mm, Thickness – 13.6mm, Lug to Lug – 48.8mm, Lug Width – 20mm
- Movement: Seiko NH35 Automatic, 21,600vph (3Hz), Hackable, Self Winding, 41hr Power Reserve
- Case Material: Brushed 316L Stainless Steel
- Bracelet: Brushed & Polished 316L Stainless Steel, Solid End-Links, Screw-Pins, Milled Clasp
- Crystal: Double Domed Sapphire, Underside Anti-Reflective Coating
- Bezel: 120 Click Unidirectional, Ceramic Insert, Fully Lumed
- Water Resistance: 30ATM / 300m / 990ft
- Lume: Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9 & C3
- Crown: Signed, Triple Sealed, Screw Down Caseback: Screw Down with Marlin Logo
- Warranty: 1 Year Where to Buy: Dificiano Watches
- Options: Dial: Black Enamel, Dark Blue Sunray, Dark Gun Sunray, Silver Sunray
Dificiano Watches - The Company
Case & Crown
The case of the Marlin has a diameter of 41.1mm. The lug to lug is 48.8mm and the overall thickness, including the double domed sapphire crystal, I measured in at a 13.6mm. The entire case, caseback, bezel, crown and bracelet are all 316L stainless steel. The finish of the case is entirely brushed. Quality wise, think of a HELM Vanuatu, high praise indeed!
The Marlin has a water resistance rating of 300m, thanks to the screw down caseback & crown. The proportions of the watch, in my opinion, are great for my 7″ wrist. The Marlin wears extremely well on wrist and it’s not as large as the measurements might suggest. It’s a very comfortable watch with great overall proportions.
The signed crown is very nice, looks great with it’s etched Marlin logo, and there is absolutely no wobble when the crown is pulled out to any position. You also feel a very nice pop as you unscrew the crown and you can see and feel the amount of work that has gone into this triple sealed crown, making it feel very premium when in use. The caseback is quite a simple affair though, but it does have their Marlin logo etched into it, with the usual various specs around the edge.
The Marlin comes fitted as standard with a beads of rice bracelet. The outer links are brushed with the centre links and sides polished. The fully milled clasp has a twin push-button release on the sides, as well as a divers extension that has the same release mechanism. There are also three micro-adjustment holes to ensure you get a snug fit. Overall, it’s everything you would want in a bracelet, extremely well made with an outstanding fit & finish and very comfortable.
This beads of rice bracelet tapers from 20mm at the lugs down to 18mm and back up to 20mm at the milled clasp. Sized up for my 7″ wrist I had to remove four links, which was simple enough to do, with the screw pins for adjusting & re-sizing. Solid links throughout, a milled clasp that is also signed with the Marlin logo are also present on this bracelet. Additionally, the clasp has very nice chamfered edges, which is also a very nice premium touch.
The movement selected for the Marlin is the microbrand go-to movement of choice, the super-reliable NH35 manufactured by Seiko. A fantastic workhorse that is a 21,600vph, 3Hz, 24 jewel automatic movement with a 41hr power reserve, self winding and of course hacking. Checking the accuracy after running the Marlin for a few weeks, mainly on my wrist and occasionally in my watch winder, I thought the accuracy was fantastic with it showing an average of just +3.3 seconds per day. Great result!!
Dial & Bezel
The hour markers are all applied with a chrome surround and are pumped full of lume. The markers at the 3, 9 & 12 positions are slightly larger than the rest though, which isn’t a bad thing. The hour and minute hands also have a crap ton of lume applied to them, as does the lumed chapter ring. More info on that down below… The seconds hand is great too, with it’s lumed lollipop section with the rest of the hand finished in blue that matches the chapter ring perfectly. The hand reaches out to the minute track too when sweeping around the dial. The only thing I would change on the dial is, I’d colour match the date wheel. It’s perfectly fine on this silver dial, but it needs done on the darker models in my opinion.
The lume on the Dificiano Marlin is nothing short of brilliant! I’ve seen very few watches with lume as good as this. I’d even go as far to say, it’s up there and almost just as good as the lume on any of my Zelos watches! The actual lume that has been applied to the Marlin is a combination of Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9 and C3. Giving you an idea of how good it actually is, not with just the initial burst, but I’ve got up in the middle of the night and I can still clearly see the time.
This being the very first watch from Dificiano, I can honestly say that I am totally astonished with just how great the Marlin actually is. As a reviewer of many watches from a vast range of companies, I’m still a firm believer that you can always tell when the watch company in question is owned by “proper watch enthusiasts“. You can spot it a mile off!
To put this into perspective, like I previously mentioned, the Marlin is like a sports diver that has been built by HELM Watches. The build quality is just as good, and trust me, that is fantastic praise indeed!
The only negative that I can find on this full production model of the Marlin is the retail price. $399, I personally think that is just a little too rich. I understand that every watch company has different manufacturing costs etc, but putting into consideration what can be had for a fair bit less, it is my only negative of the Dificiano Marlin.
Dificiano Watches – An excellent diver with exceptional build quality! I can’t wait to see what else you come up with in the near future. I am most definately 100% a fan of Dificiano!
A huge thank you to Michael at Dificiano Watches for sending out the Marlin so quickly for review.
To view the Dificiano website, or join their mailing list to be informed of new models etc, visit Dificiano Watches.