Casio Marlin Duro Review

Casio Marlin Duro Review

Richard Brown





Question? Can you buy a Rolex Submariner for £55?  

Well, of course you can't, not unless you're shopping at a street market in Bangkok or Hong Kong, where the product may look great, but the legitimacy of your purchase will be called into question.  

Perhaps the question should be, is it possible to buy a highly capable dive watch that looks a lot like a Rolex Submariner for £55? That is an entirely different question to which we have a very good answer.  

With the prices of watches going up daily and capable dive watches regularly being £1000 or more, we wondered whether or was an exceptionally cost-effective and technically capable variant which could deliver everything you would need from a professional dive watch yet was a truly budget price. 

Casio Marlin DuroCasio Marlin Duro - Credit WatchGecko

Introducing the very popular Casio Marlin Duro - MDV106B-1A 1V. 

Now this watch doesn't require any introduction, and to be honest, we are amazed that we've not reviewed one before, especially given our love of Casio’s. Like so many enthusiasts, we tend to focus on the big presence of digital models like G-Shocks and forget that Casio makes some superb analog watches. 

The Marlin is the evolution of a family of Casio stainless steel dive watches which became popular in the 80s. (Editor comment; in the late 80s, I used to regularly wear a Casio 343 MMA-200W, and I would still be using it today if it hadn't become illegible due to punishment.) 

Casio Duro MarlinCasio Marlin Duro - Credit WatchGecko

The current 2023 iteration of the Marlin Duro genuinely surprises when it comes out of the box. It is a full-size, full-spec dive watch, which, at first sight and handling, implies it should have cost you much more. 

The stainless steel is polished to the highest standards, and the finish is flawless. The model we bought draws inspiration from the Rolex GMT Batman because it has a dark blue and black bisected bezel. The blue is a deep color representing the depths of the oceans and looks lustrous and expensive.  

The dial is the paragon of clarity, and you can see effort has been made to make the watch highly legible. The display feels big because the minute track is vertical on the rehaut, leaving lots of real estate for luminous indices and purposeful hands. On the example we had, the second hand was also blue to match the lower half of the bezel, and like all the models in the range, it has a leaping Marlin fish embossed on the dial giving reassurance of a life destined to be aquatic. 

Flip the watch over, and the same Marlin is engraved on the case back, along with the usual text you would expect from Casio.  

Casio Marlin DuroCasio Marlin Duro - Credit WatchGecko

The Marlin is available in multiple color options from black to green or blue, to “Pepsi” to “Batman,” all of which are designed to appeal to the widest possible demographic of buyers. The dial is generously proportioned at 44mm in width, and despite the stainless steel construction, the watch weighs only 93g. With a lug-to-lug of 48mm, it fits nicely onto most wrists, and the strong curvature of the case greatly enhances wearability. The watch comes equipped as standard with a G-Shock style 22mm rubber strap, but given the tool watch nature of the stainless steel case, this model will look good on anything from leather to military nylon. 

The specifications of the watch are immense for the price; in fact, we would dare to say we have reviewed some very expensive watches which are not as desirable and far more divisive.  

Casio Marlin DuroCasio Marlin Duro - Credit WatchGecko

For just over £50 pounds, you get an absolutely beautiful dial with a sunburst effect which looks amazing in bright light, presenting different patterns as you move the watch around. The luminescence on the watch is not the strongest; however, in several nighttime tests with a quick blast from a UV torch before lights out, the time was clearly legible at 4:00 AM. There is a date window nicely finished with a white outline, a uni-directional bezel with 120 clicks and luminous pip, and a screw-down crown ensuring 200m water resistance. Internally the watch is equipped with Casio 's module 2784, which takes an SR626 battery guaranteeing three years of life and an accuracy rating of +/-20 seconds per month.   


It is always nice (and rare) when the watch press agrees on a model. When you look at other reviews of this Casio, it seems to meet with universal approval, and you can see why; there's simply nothing wrong with it! 

casio marlin duroCasio Marlin Duro - Credit WatchGecko

In every measurable way, the Marlin Duro is a hugely capable, well-built, 200m dive watch that costs less than £100. When you wear it next to an Omega Seamaster or a Tudor Black Bay, there is fundamentally very little superficial difference between the products other than the fact that the Omega and Tudor have extremely expensive high-end automatic movements.  

The watch also has a very famous owner as it is regularly seen on the wrist of Bill Gates. If one of the wealthiest men in the world can see the merits of the Casio Marlin Duro, then there is no reason why you can't.  

It is so refreshing to wholeheartedly recommend a watch to our entire readership. The Casio Marlin is a star and deserves to be in your collection and sit proudly alongside an £8000 Rolex Submariner. If you are lucky to own both, it would be fascinating to learn which one you actually wear the most! If you don’t own one, go buy one with confidence! 

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Richard Brown

About the Author: Richard Brown

About the Author: Richard Brown

I truly believe one of the best partners in exploration and adventure is a fine watch. Over 30 years of collecting, my fascination with the technical capabilities of both vintage and modern timepieces has never abated and it is a privilege to be able to share this passion through writing.

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