Manufacturer: IRIDIUM | Price: from $399 USD (£289 GBP, €329 EUR)
Before I begin this review of the IRIDIUM Torpedo, I’d just like to start by apologising for the length of time it’s taken me to get this review done. I’ve spent the last four days in bed feeling like utter shit, although I did manage to borrow a laptop to get this written part done in some relative (dis)comfort. Anyway, this article isn’t about me, it’s all about this 300m diver, the Torpedo from IRIDIUM. I am pretty sure I first heard about IRIDIUM last year, but they kind of fell off my radar for some reason, although I think that may have been due to AUDRIC, the sister brand of IRIDIUM. I have spoken to Akshay, the owner and he has informed me of what’s coming in the next 12 months or so. All I’ll say is… HOLY FUCK!! IRIDIUM and AUDRIC are most definitely worth keeping an eye on, and yes, I will be reviewing every single one of them!
- Dimensions: Case – 41.8mm, Thickness – 13.2mm, Lug to Lug – 50.2mm, Lug Width – 22mm
- Movement: Miyota 9015, 28,800vph, 4Hz, Hackable, Self Winding, 42hr Power Reserve
- Case Material: Brushed 316L Stainless Steel, Polished Accents, Octocore Anti-Scratch Coating
- Bezel: 120 Click Unidirectional, One Piece Coin Edge Stainless Steel, Fully Lumed
- Dial: Sunburst, Applied Indexes, Date at 3, Arrow Hands
- Bracelet: 316L Stainless Steel, Screw Pins, Solid Links, Female End Links, Milled Clasp
- Crystal: Domed Sapphire, Underside Anti-Reflective Coatings
- Lume: Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9
- Water Resistance: 300m / 30ATM / 990ft
- Caseback: Screw Down, Etched Torpedo Logo
- Crown: 7mm, Screw Down, Signed, Lumed
- Weight: 174g (Sized up for my 6¾″ wrist)
- Where to Buy: IRIDIUM (Launching on Kickstarter in March)
- Warranty: 2 Years International
IRIDIUM Torpedo Colour Options
Case & Crown
The case of the IRIDIUM Torpedo has an overall diameter of 41.8mm. The lug to lug is 50.2mm and the thickness, including the domed sapphire, I measured in at a very nice 13.2mm and last but not least, the Torpedo has a lug width of 22mm. The entire case, caseback, bezel, 7mm crown and bracelet are all solid 316L stainless steel. The finish of the watch is mostly brushed, however there are some rather lovely polished chamfered edges that run along the top side of the case and twist down over the edge of the lugs. This looks absolutely stunning and I can only describe the transition between the brushed and polished finishing as outstanding! Most definitely a big thumbs-up from me. The IRIDIUM Torpedo also has a water resistance rating of 300m, thanks to excellent build quality, screw down caseback & crown.
The proportions of the watch, in my opinion are absolutely bang on, with everything having a very balanced overall aesthetic, with maybe the exception of the sapphire crystal that gives just a bit too much distortion, although IRIDIUM has stated that this will be toned down quite a bit on the production units. The Torpedo does wear very well on wrist and it’s really comfortable, it doesn’t wear on wrist as big as the dimensions might suggest either. The signed crown is fantastic, looks great and even the logo is full of lume. There is no wobble whatsoever when the crown is in use and you can also feel a very nice wee pop as you unscrew it as it settles into its first position. The caseback is quite simple, with its rather sterile appearance, with just a lightly etched torpedo logo and the usual various spec sheet etched around the edge.
The bracelet of the IRIDIUM Torpedo is very nicely manufactured and it has all the bells & whistles that all of us watch enthusiasts love. Solid links throughout, with the addition of female end links, screw pins for resizing and a nice milled clasp, that is also signed with IRIDIUM’s logo. The links are mostly brushed with the exception of the 2nd & 4th links that are polished, giving the perfect balance and not coming across as too blingy. There’s a total of five micro-adjustment holes on this clasp but I’ve been informed by IRIDIUM that the entire clasp will be upgraded to a far more premium one for production. The brushing on the bracelet is superb and it matches the brushing on the case absolutely perfectly.
The fit & finish of the bracelet is outstanding and it actually looks like it’s been made for this watch specifically, rather than some off-the-shelf shit. Measurement wise, the bracelet is 22mm at the lugs, yet has a lovely wee taper to it, with it coming in at 19mm at the thinnest most part and back up to approximately 21mm at the clasp. Talking of the clasp again, the one that’s featured here has a diver’s extension, but as I mentioned, it’s being replaced with an even better one.
Movement / Accuracy
The chosen movement for the IRIDIUM Torpedo is the smooth sweep, high beat, Miyota 9015. The 9015 is a very slim Japanese made 28,800vph, 24 jewel caliber, often compared to that of the Swiss made ETA 2824. Power reserve is also very healthy at 42 hours. Checking the accuracy after running the Torpedo for just over 10 days, mainly on wrist and occasionally in my winder, I was very pleased with the results, with the Torpedo coming in at a very respectable +5.1spd.
Dial & Bezel
As you can see in the images, the arrow style hour and minute hands are superbly done with their very chunky, yet still proportionate design. I have to admit, the hour and minute hands are one of my favourite aspects of this watch. The seconds hand is great too, finished in a contrasting orange, with its wee lumed circular marker and tip reaching right out to the minute track when sweeping around the dial. Yup, I’m going to say it again though… even if brands can’t do colour matched date wheels, they should at least use black on the darker dials, with white on the lighter colours. It might cost more going down the full colour matching route, but I know I would pay more for that more detailed end result.
The lume on the IRIDIUM Torpedo is absolutely superb! It is initially rather potent and even as expected, it will fade over time, it will still last right throughout the wee small hours. The lume that’s been applied to the Torpedo is Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9 and it’s been applied 100% perfectly to the indexes, hour & minute hands, the lumed marker on the seconds hand, all markers on the bezel and even on the crown logo itself. The execution is most definately right up there with the best I’ve seen on any dive watch, so trust me when I say, you most definitely will NOT be disappointed!
There isn’t a great deal that I can really fault the IRIDIUM Torpedo on, other than what I’ve already mentioned. All the small negatives that I’ve mentioned though will be rectified or changed for the production models anyway. So, I’m kind of struggling to come up with anything to say for this conclusion, other than I really do like it, a LOT. The build quality is fantastic, the finishing is near perfection and the specs are pretty much what I’d personally go with. All I need now is for IRIDIUM to make a white dial version, with black surrounds on the hands and hour markers and I’d buy one instantly!
Even the price, which starts at $399 is pretty much bang on. When I first clocked the dimensions before getting the watch in, I thought it was going to be way too big, especially with that lug to lug length of 50mm. How wrong I was, it wears pretty much like a Zelos Swordfish v2 with a lug to lug of 48mm. In fact, I’d even say that the IRIDIUM Torpedo has kind of opened my eyes to other watches with similar dimensions, that I would normally not even bother taking a look at.