The Argos Odyssey is an affordable and thoughtful everyday watchTime+Tide
Back when everybody wore a watch to keep their lives organised, most people only needed something that indicated the time and date. Nothing truly fancy in terms of complications. However, not everyone had the same kind of budget to buy such an essential tool. Some could afford a luxury Swiss timepiece while others an inexpensive one, made of lesser quality parts. With that said, everyday watches never ceased to be popular, seemingly becoming more popular by the minute. The Argos Odyssey is another excellent option for those of us with more modest bank accounts, courtesy of a new brand based in the Philippines.
In order to fulfil its mission, an everyday watch must come with a comfortable and versatile case. This will guarantee all-day wearing comfort and adaptability to the various temperatures and occasions. The Odyssey comes with a case measuring 38mm in diameter, 46mm lug-to-lug, 11.5mm thick and with a 20mm lug width. On my 6.25”/16cm wrist, the Odyssey wears well. It’s neither too large or too small, and paired with a comfortable bracelet (which we will discuss later), the wearing experience is overall very satisfying. Being made for everyday use, the Odyssey comes with a reasonable 50 metres of water resistance and a see-through caseback which is a nice bonus if you’re into that sort of thing.
Moreover, I would say the case of the Odyssey has a modern and versatile design. The sides come with a slab-sided profile showcasing a satin brushed finish while the short and narrow lugs complement the gentle curves. Polished chamfers run alongside the mid-case and frame the small fixed bezel that is made of a brushed side and polished upper elements. The small push-pull crown has a conical shape and is recessed within the case, almost creating perfect symmetry. That symmetry does come at a bit of a cost, as you’ll need enough nail real estate to pull the underside of the crown out for adjustment.
There is a lot to see on the dial of the Argos Odyssey. Starting with the two elements that make it legible – the dauphine hands and applied markers. The hour and minute hands are polished and come with a rather large application of lume, while the second hand, also polished, showcases a red arrow tip – Argos’ inspiration here is of a compass needle. The polished hour markers are a mix of Arabics and indices, with numerals at the 3, 9, and 12 positions, and batons everywhere else. Instead of an hour marker at the 6, Argos opted for a framed date aperture with a white disc and black printed numerals.
At first, I thought there wasn’t any lume on the dial to make it possible to read the hours and minutes in low-light conditions. However, blasting the dial with a UV torch proved me wrong – the rehaut is where we find the minute track complete with lumed inverted triangles indicating the 5-minute increments. The rest of the minute markers on the rehaut are not lumed, which isn’t a big deal. After all, the Odyssey is an everyday watch, not a tool watch, and it therefore comes with the appropriate amount of lume and water resistance. The entire ordeal is topped off with a curved sapphire crystal.
The Argos Odyssey is shipped on a stainless steel bracelet with solid links and end-links, though held together with push-pins. The clasp is of the double-pusher deployment variety with four holes of micro-adjustments. Visually, the bracelet reminds me of vintage Seikos from the 1990s, due to having a 3-link construction and polished accents on the centre links. Argos went the extra mile by equipping the bracelet with female end-links which aids with comfort.
A reliable everyday watch needs a robust movement. The Odyssey comes with the solid, yet humble Seiko NH35A calibre which beats at 21,600 vph (3 Hz) and has 41 hours of power reserve. It’s the type of movement that’s easy to get serviced, but certainly won’t stand out on a spec sheet.
Argos Odyssey pricing and availability
The Argos Odyssey is readily available on the brand’s website. Price: ₱17,999 (~A$500)
|38mm (D) x 11.5mm (T) x 46mm (LTL)
|Blue or cream
|Three-link steel bracelet, double-pusher clasp
|Seiko NH35A, automatic, 3 Hz
|Hours, minutes, seconds, date