Mido Ocean Star GMT
The one pictured above is among 2020 Mido's major watch releases. The Mido Ocean Star GMT is an unexpected take and range extender to a collection whose mainstream offering includes diving watches. I guessed that such a model would instead belong to the Multifort's, even more so considering how much has Mido recently reinforced the Ocean Star's modern and vintage diver's foothold by including exquisite pieces like the Rainbow Decompression Timer. Technically speaking, the brand's designers took inspiration from the standard Tribute-looking mid-case (squared and thick) to grow it up to 44mm across.
The Mido's take on the steel sports watch geared towards frequent travelers is powered by the class-leading caliber 80 here showcasing two time zones, by powering a 24-hour arrow-shaped central hand, whose central part is skeletonized to make the dial as readable as possible at first glance. Thus, the Mido Ocean Star GMT allows you to visualize local and reference time while preserving its original diving watch attitude via an uncluttered and easy to read layout.
When conceiving a GMT timepiece, there's no room for any out-of-the-box interpretation: they usually all sport a 24-hour engraved or printed inlay, applied to a bidirectional rotating bezel to allow the wearer measure up to three different time zones. The Ocean Star GMT sets itself apart in that it pairs reference and home time functions, with a standard 200-meter waterproofness. The 24-hour ring comes as a two-tone black and blue disc to separate night and day (reference time), whereas the unidirectional ceramic bezel reminds you this is first and foremost a diver's watch. First, by pulling the crown to position 3, you can set the reference time. To set the local time and date instead, pull the crown to position 2, then.
Such a multi-function layout is as useful as it is rare in the benchmark. Mido thus belongs to a selected group of watch brands to have conceived a Diver GMT, along with a few ones, like Citizen, for example, and a bunch of other brands (i.e., Oris, Fortis, to cite a few). Nonetheless, brands and products are much different from each other. Regarding the bezel, I'll never stop enhancing how is this part of a watch instrumental in making the touch and feel experience pleasing on a diving watch. Among the key attributes, I praise Mido for offering an exquisitely engineered ceramic inlay whose appeal is only outperformed by the Mido Ocean Star Diver 600's, in my opinion. The latter wins hands down from a technical perspective, too. On the other hand, I believe the bezel still lacks a softer and more pleasing detenting experience.
The Mido Ocean Star GMT is not a small watch by any means; at 44mil across, as stated above, and over 13mm in thickness, it is a bold and hefty sports watch, where the tapered inner ring makes it feel and wear even bigger. We took many in-studio pictures along with macros to draw the readers' attention to product details. Nevertheless, I have worn the watch day and night, and I can confirm it is as pleasing as it hardly slides under any cuff; here is why I also love the brand for choosing a fabric strap instead of a folding buckle; the former ensures it adheres to your wrist unlike any folding clasp can ever do.
From an end-consumer perspective, the "dual-purpose" (Diver and GMT) layout is the key added value here; bear in mind a steel bracelet is also available and can replace the OEM fabric strap. However, I suggest Mido also provide a blue rubber strap sometime soon, hopefully ahead of the next summer season. The Mido Ocean Star GMT retails for 1,150 Euros. Again, the brand confirms itself as the Ford of watchmakers: i.e., providing features, perceived quality, and technical specifications once reserved to a luxury sports watch and a selected few, now available to a broader audience at an affordable price point.
(Photo credit: Marco Antinori for Horbiter®)
Gaetano C @Horbiter®