93 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Watch, Excellent Vendor Service
I purchased this watch after rather exhaustively reviewing the many, many offerings at Amazon.com. When it first arrived, I found myself vaguely let down. Somehow, it didn't seem quite as striking as in the photos. But as the weeks have gone by, my opinion has completely turned around on that. This watch is really very beautiful, and the numerous compliments I've now...
Published on August 4, 2008 by Roger Keeling
52 of 56 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Good Value with a Few Rough Edges
The Bulova 98C62 Marine Star watch is diver's style quartz/electronic watch rated water resistant to 200 meters. It has a blue face with large, luminous hour and minute hands, a red-tipped second hand and a day/date feature. The dial itself has large luminous dashes at the 3, 6 and 9 o'clock positions, an inverted luminous triangle at the 12 o'clock position and large...
Published on September 9, 2010 by The Customer
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93 of 98 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific Watch, Excellent Vendor Service,
I purchased this watch after rather exhaustively reviewing the many, many offerings at Amazon.com. When it first arrived, I found myself vaguely let down. Somehow, it didn't seem quite as striking as in the photos. But as the weeks have gone by, my opinion has completely turned around on that. This watch is really very beautiful, and the numerous compliments I've now received serve as confirmation. It also appears to be extremely accurate and, contrary to some other reviews, setting it (including day and date) was not at all difficult. Do remember that it has a screw-down crown; you need to unscrew it before actually pulling out the stem. That is NOT explained, at all, in the (very inadequate) instruction manual.
Is this equal to an Omega automatic diver's watch, which has a similar appearance? I'm sure it's not. But, then, it only costs about 1/10th as much. It very likely equals or exceeds similar Invictas as well as any similar Citizen or Seiko watch.
I've not owned it long enough to speak of its durability. But I tend to be hard on watches, and I've already subjected this one to some small abuses. So far, it remains flawless, suggesting that they've really used top-rank materials in its construction.
Sadly, one reason I bought this watch no longer holds true. I knew it was made overseas (Japan, I believe), but that's true of virtually all watches. I am not sure, in fact, if a single watch (including movement) is still made here, and certainly nothing that's affordable. But I was under the impression that Bulova remained a U.S.-owned company, and that they still at least designed all their offerings here. And they may indeed still do that. But earlier this year the company was purchased by Citizen Watch Co. of Japan. No more U.S. involvement save for whatever facilities the new owners decide to keep here.
Note that I purchased this directly from Amazon.com. Shipping was as promised, with it arriving a few days sooner than I expected. I have had no occasion to test their warranty service or return policies. I could have saved $10-$15 by buying from one of the other vendors at Amazon. But that vendor had a significant number of poor reviews (I think running over 10%), and I didn't think saving a few bucks was worth dealing with a dubious vendor.
Update on 7/24/2010: I've now had this watch almost two years. The accuracy has continued to be exemplary. I did have to change the batteries once; I had it done at a fine jewelry store in California, and they warned me that unless I returned it directly to Bulova the water resistance would no longer be guaranteed. But it seems fine on that score, too, although I rarely take it into the water anyhow. The appearance remains almost pristine. Even though I've historically been hard on watches, this one shows virtually no wear. It still looks new. That's impressive to me. So if I could, I'd add a star to my review. Much recommended!
Update on 8/22/2011: Over three years, now, and my Bulova remains magnificent. I had to have the battery replaced last month. And I did have a problem with the clasp on the band, quickly fixed for under $6 by my local watch repair. But the watch keeps splendid time, and still looks nearly-new! (Indeed, I am sure that if I paid to have it cleaned, it would simply look "new.")
Update on 12/22/2012: Four years and more have passed, and my Bulova is just wonderful. I get compliments on it all the time, most recently by a relative who thought it was a solid competitor to his lovely Tag Hauer. I fully expected to have replaced the crystal by now, but -- while not perfect -- it remains largely scratch-free. Absolutely the best watch I've ever owned. I think this will be my last update: there's just nothing more to report here.
52 of 56 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Good Value with a Few Rough Edges,
The Bulova 98C62 Marine Star watch is diver's style quartz/electronic watch rated water resistant to 200 meters. It has a blue face with large, luminous hour and minute hands, a red-tipped second hand and a day/date feature. The dial itself has large luminous dashes at the 3, 6 and 9 o'clock positions, an inverted luminous triangle at the 12 o'clock position and large luminous dots at the other positions. Marker luminosity fades rapidly, though, and becomes ineffective after about 20 minutes in the dark. Surrounding the dial is a classic unidirectional timing ring (rotates CCW) calibrated in increments of 10 with 60 click-stops per revolution (most diving watches have 120). The ring presents very legible chrome figures on a blue background. Overall the watch is very easy to read (except in the dark after 20 minutes), even for those with poor close-up vision. The screw-down crown with raised guard ridges to either side provides robust protection for this critical seal and helps assure the watches water resistance. A hefty double-foldover stainless-steel bracelet with a built-in, deploy-able wet suit extension completes the package.
I purchased this modestly priced watch for general use during an extended summer water-centric vacation at several East Coast lakes and the Atlantic Ocean. I needed a dependable yet expendable timepiece that was presentable enough to be worn in the water or out to dinner, and that could survive shallow diving, wake-boarding, tubing, swimming and rough physical labor. Since I had destroyed or damaged a number of other watches on similar vacations, the Bulova was to be my "beater". I'm happy to say that it came through this test with flying colors, and now two months into ownership it looks as good as new, and works even better. How could it work better than new? Ah! There's the catch with this product. It's not built with any particular precision, from its timing to the smoothness and alignment of its moving parts. For example, when received, the rotating ring was so stiff I had to put on a pair of mechanics gloves and apply major force to rotate it at all. After deliberately rotating the ring over 300 times, with it clacking loudly at every click-stop, the ring became (almost) manageable. Paradoxically, I found the ring's slight bevel and serrated, yet glossy sides made it very hard to turn when gripping it from the edge. The fix? Place the entire palm of you hand over the watch face and ring, squeeze with your palm and rotate. Now, two months later, the ring has lost more of its stiffness and is more user-friendly, but I would never depend on it in a serious dive - its too hard to use, making it too easy to make a mistake at a critical time. And if you fuss with it in an office meeting, it will announce your boredom with pronounced clacking that has to be heard to be believed.
Hand alignment is another issue. The second hand is not aligned with the tick marks on the inner chapter ring on the watch face, and the amount of misalignment changes as the hand rotates (how Do they do that?) - it is greatest between 7 and 11 and minimal between 2 and 5. The minute hand does not align well with its markers, either, when the second hand is in the 12 o'clock position. While not visible from a distance, this lack of mechanical precision became annoying after awhile.
Concerning timing accuracy - compared to a mechanical watch, any mechanical watch, it is outstanding. But as a quartz watch it is adequate yet unremarkable, gaining the equivalent of 70 seconds per year - twice as much as my plastic Timex Expedition.
In summary, this is a modestly priced watch with modestly good looks and rather poor mechanical precision. It has several key features that enhance its value: 1. A protected screw-down crown that provides real and reliable water resistance, 2. A double fold-over bracelet that prevents accidental loss, 3. A deployable wetsuit extension built into the clasp, 4. A day/date display. On the other hand, the need to break in the timing ring was just plain annoying. A good value? Yes. A great value? You be the judge.
18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Stunning!,
I received this for my birthday earlier this year and was shocked at how beautiful it was. I had looked at it on Amazon and had been considering buying it for a long time, going so far as to add it to my Wish List after my last good watch ended up at the bottom of Narragansett Bay. It was a total shock to receive it as a gift (at a surprise party no less!).
It has a great feel and heft to it, much meatier than I'd imagined it to be, but not bulky or uncomfortable given the nature of the timepiece. If you're seeking a slim dress watch search elsewhere.
The band has a nice feel and the polished centre links add an understated sophistication to the look of the watch without looking gaudy, forced or overdone. The fold-over band (with safety) is secure without being difficult to release and as befits a dive watch there is an over-the-wetsuit deployment clasp.
The colour of the blue face is just right, not too bright and not too dark as to look black. The markings are large and easy to read and hold their luminosity for a long time before fading. Some reviews have mentioned that the bezel was stiff. While it may be a little harder to turn than a cheaper watch I think it owes more to the lack of a good gripping mechanism on the bezel rather than the bezel being overly stiff. Its a rather small issue that most people won't encounter, either because they don't dive or because they do dive and have a dive computer. In either case its certainly not something that should dissuade someone from buying this timepiece.
The screw-down crown functions just as it should and has a pair of stout guards to protect it from getting knocked about. I'd like to address those complaints that I've read with wearers having a problem getting the day/date feature to coordinate. This isn't a Casio with a built-in perpetual calendar and a 24 hour set time. Pull the crown out to the second "click" and stop the second hand at 12:00 so you can synchronize the watch, establish where midnight is by running the hands around the dial until the date advances (the day will change somewhere in the neighborhood of 3AM - I'm no watchmaker so I'll assume its some mechanical limitation), set the correct time, push in one "click" to set the hands in motion and then rotate the crown one direction to set the date and the other direction to set the day. It is not difficult in the slightest. The days may be set in either English or Spanish.
Overall its a great purchase and worthy of being worn on anyone's wrist. Speaking of which, unless you have a wrist the size of a stovepipe plan on making a trip to the jeweler or watch repair shop - the band comes from Bulova set to the largest size.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely a very good watch, but don't buy it from Amazon!,
Watch arrived DOA due to two issues. The second hand was loose and the battery was dead. Bulova repaired the second hand, but charged thirty-five dollars for a new battery. I love Amazon, but a new watch shouldn't arrive with a dead battery, and to pay quite a bit for the watch and then to pay extra for battery replacement, and then to pay for fitting, results in a lot more expense than expected.
Update - Having owned the watch for a couple years (approximately), I can now say that I really like this watch. It's held up great. The battery requires changing about once yearly, but otherwise it works perfectly. I've received a number of compliments, and people who know their watches have mistaken it for the Omega. I would definitely buy again, but would consider buying from a store where I could ensure the battery and second hand are working.
31 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marvelous timepiece!!!,
If the Omega Seamaster is just out of your price range, the Bulova Marine Star will get the job done. It rivals most watches in beauty and dependability. Made specifically for the adventurous diver, this watch has both style and class. This piece of jewelry goes with any outfit, and you will have it for a long time. It can be taken down to 660 feet, which is deeper than many divers will ever go. If you have a slightly limited budget, but you still want to achieve that "Bond look", this is the perfect watch to get you there in style!
16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poor man's Omega,
...it may be, but in terms of functionality and looks it is second to none. Not as flashy as many of the competitors, going instead for a stylish, down-toned look while keeping true to the Yacht-Marine-Diver heritage. Absolutely love it and have never taken it off since I got it. And my friends just can't belive how little it costs. My dad, who's been wearing his Rolex for thirty years started looking very insecure and "hungry" when he saw it. "So where exactly did you get it did you say? Amazon? Could you write that down for me?" Recomend this whole-heartedly.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!,
I have to say this is one of the best purchases I've made in a LONG time. Absolutely beautiful watch, fantastic quality...& a great price! I can't recommend this watch enough.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another fine Bulova timepiece,
After looking at over 300 watches from every online merchant over a period of two months, I find the majority of watches to be too flashy and cheap looking regardless of price. A high price does not necessarily buy you a good looking watch. Except for the movement (quartz, automatic, chronograph features, etc.) there is very little a manufacturer can do to make a $3000 watch all that much better than a $300 watch. I believe that the optimum combination of watch quality and value happens between $100-$300. This is the price point where the cost of watch materials, quality movements, and workmanship hit a ceiling for mass produced watches. Go higher than $500 and you may run out of reasons to justify the price save for the prestige of a brand name, the complication of the movement, or precious materials used in the construction.
I currently have two leather band watches (Bulova and Citizen) that I wear throughout the week but wanted to add a diver watch with a metal bracelet to the mix. I also have a nice, matte gold and silver Tag Heuer 2000 diver on a metal bracelet but I no longer find a gold watch appealing as a daily timepiece. I prefer the stainless steel look, preferably with a dark-colored dial and easy-to-read hands and indicators.
I've looked at nearly every watch from every manufacturer up and down the price scale. I was sure I would purchase a Tissot or Swiss Army. However, very few designs (regardless of price) attracted my attention. The Tissot PRC200 are way too flashy and the Swiss Army designs are a bit too bland. I almost went for an Invicta Pro Diver but the carbon-copy Rolex design is not unique. I also liked the Orient Mako's clean looks but it only comes in an automatic movement (I've had automatic watches and now prefer quartz or eco-drive). Then, when I came across the Bulova Marine Star 98C62 quartz, I knew I had found THE one.
The Bulova has the clean looks of the Mako (with similar case and bezel) but has greater detail in the dial design and hands. The second hand has a white bubble marker and a bright red tip --an homage to the classic Omega Seamaster. In addition, Bulova has a great looking logo (the Accutron fork) and the script "Marine Star" and the "200M" depth surrounded by ten stars is marked clearly on the dial. It is clean and sophisticated. The dial and bezel are a deep, navy blue that is difficult to describe but that may be one of the watch's most tasteful design elements. NOTE: I uploaded photos to this product page to show just how nice the blue color works with the rest of the watch design (see the photos area for Bulova 98C62 above).
Another feature that most owners love is the bracelet. I haven't seen anything like it on any other watch except on much more expensive Swiss alternatives. The bracelet has solid, brushed stainless steel links with two, narrow polished insets that run down the middle. I like it because it's not overly flashy or shiny like many Rolex-type bracelets that look chrome-plated. In my opinion, the flashier the bracelet the cheaper the watch looks as a result. The Bulova bracelet is heavy and is higher quality than anything you'll find under $300.
The crown is a screw-down type for water resistance. However, like any true diver's watch with a screw-down crown, always check that the crown is tight before submerging the watch. I've read too many reviews where people became disappointed that their watch became waterlogged and they subsequently blamed it on a defective watch. In 99.9% of the cases, this would only happen if the screw-down crown was not actually tight or hadn't been checked in a while (who remembers to check the tightness of the crown? Ask any diver!). So don't forget: Tight crown = dry watch!
Overall, I can't think of any undesirable features or design elements of the Bulova Marine Star 98C62. It is a typical Bulova design --clean, detailed, and expensive looking. Sure, I would gladly pay more for a sapphire crystal and for me the day indicator is unnecessary (the numeric date alone would be fine.) The unidirectional rotating bezel is low profile (for a slimmer look) and so is not as easy to turn as on some other watches. However, if you're a serious diver you would be looking at purpose-built master dive watches anyway. The Bulova is designed to perform diving duty with its 200m depth rating and extension clasp but ultimately it's a classy, daily wearer watch. Without question, the quality of this watch compares to any other timepiece at 2-3 times the price.
When I was watch shopping four years ago, I looked at hundreds of watches and chose a beautiful Bulova Marine Star 96G38 (black dial, black leather band) that has been my daily wearer ever since. When looking for a stainless bracelet diver watch four years later, very few designs (regardless of price) attracted my attention. But when I found this Bulova Marine Star 98C62 the search was over. Bulova is an excellent brand in the same watch ranking as Tissot and Swiss Army. As for satisfied customers, just search on Bulova watches on Amazon and notice that their entire product line receives 4 stars or better from reviewers. No other watch brand on Amazon garners that kind of satisfaction regardless of price.
Thanks, Bulova, for continuing to provide clean, sophisticated, and affordable watch designs in a market flooded with Rolex wanna-be's and gumball machine glitz.
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What you need to know,
The dial is gorgeous. It has a deep, rich looking blue color. The picture does not do it justice.
The bracelet has a high degree of precision in its design and assembly. I think this is a reason why many people say the watch feels more expensive than it is. Love it.
Be aware of:
The watch is fairly large to begin with, but it looks even bigger because the dial and the bezel are of the same color. It looks great on large hands; not so good on small ones.
The dial window material is soft. It is easy to scratch, which is a shame, really, because many (most?) manufacturers in this price range offer scratch-resistant dial windows. I scratched it by a plastic shirt button. So, if you tend to be rough with you watches - this is not your watch.
Judging by the name - Marine star - you may assume it is some sort of an outdoors watch. It is not. A gentle dial makes it a strictly dress watch. However, as a dress watch, it is a great piece at a great price. I will say it again - I love it.
26 of 32 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Poor Wrist Band Durability,
I have admired Bulova watches for years. After finally getting the Marine Star as a gift I was thrilled. Being in the military I have definitely put it through some abuse, but the issues I have had should have been easily fixable. My biggest complaint about the watch is the watch band pins. Pins break, understood, but after replacing the original pins I was having to get them replaced on a monthly and weekly basis. After replacing them for the seventh time I contacted Bulova with my complaint. They admitted that there have been issues with the bands because the company that manufactures them decided to use a very thin pin. This was not news to me because each time I took my watch in for repair they would have a hard time finding pins thin enough to fit in the band. Bulova said if I mailed it in they would put in stronger pins to fix the problem. After getting it back from Bulova the pins broke the next day while I was getting out of bed. I called back Bulova, furious at the hassles I had had to endure with their product, and they offered to send me a watch of my choice for free. So for customer service I have to give them an A. The head of customer service told me to look at all the Bulova watches and choose one that had a different band as so I would not have to deal with the same problem. The watch I received was a more expensive model and I have had no issues. Problem is that my Marine Star was a gift and had sentimental value and had engravings in the back, so after sitting in the drawer for a couple months I replaced the metal band with a leather one and thicker pins and have not had an issue since.
In response to those who have said that the face is scratch proof I have to disagree. Again I am in the military and had it bang against weapons but the worst scratch that is on the face is from walking into the edge of a door.
I am not trying to bash on Bulova, I am just trying to provide a valuable assessment of the Marine Star for those who have an admiration for watches like I do. The blue face looks great, and the illumination is bright at night. However the watch band will break. I would suggest comparing the wrist band of this watch to others used by Bulova and choose one with a different band. I assure you it will be sturdier, and save you the hassle of going to the watch repair store on a monthly basis.
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Bulova Men's Marine Star Bracelet Watch by Bulova
$224.25 - $250.00