February 21, 2008
by Ariel Adams
Long in anticipation, and finally here; the first line of truly original watches from one of my favorite watch makers, Marcello C. The Diavolo line was designed to be unique yet instantly acceptable to anyone. The small attention to details on the Diavolo are impressive, the price highly encouraging, and the style lasting. I hope this means that we are going to enjoy more watch offerings such as this from Marcello C.
Marcello C loves this watch so much, they did something almost unheard of in the watch world. Right of the bat they make a number of models and colors available. Three different bezel treatments, different color combinations, two types of faces, and steel, PVD steel, and gold versions available. Even one with diamonds. Most watch companies merely trickle out models after the time has been invested into a new model. For instance, the orange colored Diavolo model would be released as a “new model” if it was any other watch maker. Marcello C is able to resist this pretentious attitude, and realizes that different color schemes simply benefit the consumer with more options. The Swiss (with no negative implication intended) would hold a gala event and press conference to celebrate the release of a new watch color or material.
The basic elements of the Diavolo involve a Valjoux 7750 based chronograph watch. I am impressed that Marcello C was able to provide a chronograph movement, but that it does not “take over” the look of the watch. The chronograph functions are well integrated into the design to enhance the look. This is the difference between throwing in a chronograph complication, and actually designing a watch around it as Marcello C has done with the Diavolo.
Two different faces are offered for the Diavolo, offering significant differences while they are similar in appearance. One I will call the “big 12,” and the other I will refer to as the “6 numbers” (as it has 6 Arabic numerals, and 6 number indexes). Each face is styled differently, and there is a difference in terms of the chronograph registers which is quite interesting. Look at the hand on the 30 minute register on the top portion of the face. On the 6 numbers face the hand is placed in a standard position pointing up, however on the big 12 face, the registered ifs modified, and the hand is pointing down. The reason for this is impressive. The 6 numbers watch is intended to be a more traditionally orientated chronograph endowed with the Diavolo charm. On the other hand, the big 12 has symmetry in mind and places the upper register hand pointing down to balance with the lower register hand pointing up. The chronograph functions exactly the same way on both versions, but the upper 30 minute register on the big 12 merely starts counting from a different “0” point. The result is a splendid attention to detail that cannot be ignored. It is simply beautiful how all the elements on the face work together with impressive balance on the big 12 face.
The various bezel options are nice touch. Though none of them seem to be rotating bezels, this should not be a large issue to most people. I am sure Marcello C. will provide a rotating bezel version in time provided the right amount of consumer demand. My favorite bezel is probably the grooved bezel, but the coined edge version adds a more classic touch, while the raised number bezel is undoubtedly the sportiest option. Marcello C will most likely mix and match these bezels are your request. Bezels are a hard detail to get right, and here Marcello C. has wisely provided three options rather than merely settle on one, a true indicator of having the consumer in mind at all times.
For me, the 44m size of the Diavolo case is perfect. This is considered large for some people, until they actually wear a 44mm watch and realize it fits on their wrist as comfortably as anything else. The rubber or leather straps will wrap nicely around your wrist for a snug, secure fit, which themselves are a welcome width at 22mm. It feels surprisingly good to raise your wrist to tell the time and notice a handsome noticeable watch on your wrist. Many older watches would never look good in this size as they would feel empty and enlarged. Modern watch design relishes in large surface areas where chronograph complications and decorative elements can join together for a more rewarding overall experience.
Marcello C. called upon many styles and design themes in the creation of the Diavolo. It is both classic and modern, sporty and sophisticated. While not placing firmly into any one category, the Marcello C. Diavolo seemingly transcends categorization. Inspection of each element on the Diavolo, or any Marcello C watch for that matter reveals functionality and ergonomics at each point. The illusion of the Diavolo is that it is a pure instrument with a fancy skin, and this is a good thing. Admire that watch all you will, but this is a serious watch tool like any other Marcello C.
See the full Marcello C. Diavolo Chronograph watch review on aBlogtoRead.com here.
See Marcello C. watches on eBay here.See Marcello C watches on Amazon here.