Speedmaster Holy Grail For The Italian Market
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While the Classic Fusion is easily my favourite line from Hublot, I much prefer the 42mm versions. The combination of titanium and ceramic should make the larger case size more wrist friendly, but no matter the materials both of these models are on the larger size of the spectrum. The TWG connection is also of some note, as they seem to understand the difficult balance one must strike when designing a limited edition model for a second brand. Unlike other cross collaborations we all try to forget, the watches made for TWG (Hublot or otherwise) are fairly reserved and generally just offer the addition of a specially coloured element, like the lovely blue middle barrel on the Bremont MBII/TWG.
The Metrographe is a tri-compax chronograph, housed in a 40mm wide stainless steel case (that wears a bit larger due to the very wide lugs). It carries on the brand's trademark tear drop shaped lugs and couples them with a perfectly round dial; while other pieces in the Tonda collection had a somewhat more oval shape. Most other references from the brand are a lot more complex in their appearance with complicated-looking dials and often less traditionally shaped cases, making for slightly more divisive aesthetics. The design of the Metro is clever in the sense that it remains distinctly Parmigiani, while is also generic enough to potentially appear to a wider audience and also allow for a greater range of modifications. While there are not as many alternating finishes as perhaps on other models from the brand, the cases are nonetheless well-made, with exceptionally good fit and finish.
Vicenterra is an independent Swiss brand that was started by Vincent Plomb a few years ago. The first watch Vicenterra offered was a slightly different version of the GMT-3 that we are looking at here, and at the time of its debut Ariel discussed the concept at length. The Vicenterra GMT-3 is available in limited runs of 100 pieces, and while the first edition sporting a white dial is sold out, the "Volume 2" is now available in a slightly different look thanks to its deep black dial. Other than the color scheme of the dial, the model's looks have not changed much: its steel case remains 44.6 millimeters wide, 54.5 mm tall and an acceptable 13.65 mm thick. With all that said, the most peculiar feature of the Vicenterra GMT-3 Volume 2 undoubtedly remains its multiple displays of time, complete with a small rotating orb representing the Earth – and since this was our first hands-on time with the piece, we must of course discuss this quite unusual feature first.
It is difficult to believe that Hublot is already entering their fourth calendar year of partnership with Ferrari as their official timekeeper and high-end watch maker. The relationship was debuted in late 2011 and at Baselworld 2012 aBlogtoWatch brought you a hands-on look at the evolved Big Bang pieces that became the Hublot Ferrari watch collection. According to Hublot Chairman Jean-Claude Biver the Big Bang Ferrari collection is the most important modern Hublot timepiece not only in terms of what it means from a business perspective, but in regard to how much effort Hublot put into it.
Alpina’s sister brand, Frederique Constant was also represented (to a lesser degree). A number of their new tourbillon pieces were on hand, including this rose gold example. Despite some debate as to the benefit of a tourbillon escapement in modern wristwatches, they have become a rite of passage of sorts for brands in recent years. Frederique Constant’s offering is one of the most affordable Swiss-made tourbillons.
Corum Chronograph Tourbillon 47 Seafender: How The Admiral’s Cup Lost Its Rank
11 Commentsby Ariel Adams
Corum Chronograph Tourbillon 47 Seafender: How The Admiral’s Cup Lost Its Rank
As a collector and enthusiast of vintage wristwatches, I am intensely critical of “reissue” pieces, and often find plenty of nits to pick with even the most superbly crafted examples. But the one brand that has, without fail, met and exceeded my expectations for honest and thoughtful homages time and again is Jaeger-LeCoultre–and I am not alone in saying so.
Once I realized that, it freed things up for me a bit in terms of how I perceived the watch when wearing it. It allowed me to appreciate the design - which, while stark, is still rather interesting. The white-on-black color palette is easy on the eyes and blends in with just about any setting. Should someone pay closer attention to the watch, they'll no doubt start asking questions about those reversed arrows.
The case itself is uniquely detailed with a cool-looking sapphire crystal that sits over the entire case acting as the bezel. Acting like a cap, the sapphire crystal allows for a very dynamic view into the dial. Even though it is curved, Girard-Perregaux ensures that it has the right amount of AR coating so it is not marred with glare and reflected light. If there is any company that understands how to properly use sapphire crystals it is GP, for sure.
We will check this watch at BaselWorld 2014 next month and provide a hands-on review. Though we have a feeling that with its modern take on this traditional type of watch and 43mm wide case, it should prove to be a hit. When seeing it, we will also check out the machine-engraved 3/4 plate and report more about it and other aspects of this very cool addition to Maurice LaCroix's Masterpiece series. It won't be too cheap as the price is expected to be between 10,000 and 20,000 CHF. mauricelacroix.com
While I've been content (so far) to view the vintage watch world from afar, I do have a soft spot in my heart for watches that draw direct inspiration from an earlier model in a company's history. Just recently, Mühle-Glashütte introduced a watch in that very vein - the M29 Classic, and I quite like it. More good news is that price is pretty good for a Muhle Glashutte timepiece.
It has been about four years since I last toured the halls of Audemars Piguet. The historic Swiss watch maker still makes movements in the same building that Mr. Audemars and Mr. Piguet did in the 19th century – though the company has expanded its footprint a bit since that time. Even now in 2014, plans for yet another addition to the Audemars Piguet presence in the sleepy mountain town of Le Brassus are being implemented. In several years an updated museum (with an exciting design that was recently unveiled) will open in a new and exciting space showcasing the brand’s true right to call themselves a high-end watch maker. Even most Audemars Piguet fans don’t know much about the company’s history until the 1970s, when the now iconic Royal Oak was first debuted. If they are smart, a focus of Audemars Piguet moving forward will be to both leverage their successful designs with their rich heritage, as one of the most innovative Swiss watch makers still in operation today.
When it comes to Rolex and their historical models, we have seen them perform a large number of subtle as well as some major modifications over time. There is a peculiar way of coupling these two kinds of enhancements, meaning that smaller improvements are generally synchronized with the debut of more considerable alterations. In Rolex history, this generally translates into presenting a new, more refined movement which is accompanied by more minor improvements on the watch, such as a more durable and comfortable bracelet, a new bezel or luminescent material, and other tweaks.
Otherwise, the Rolex Deepsea Sea-Dweller D-Blue is the same 44mm wide steel-cased super dive watch that Rolex has been producing, but with a distinct dial color. It is water resistant to 3,900 meters (12,800 feet), has the Cerachrom black ceramic bezel insert and the "Monobloc" middle case with Helium Escape Valve. More tech specs are below.
We first encountered Dietrich back in 2011 when we gave a hands-on look at the Dietrich Snow watch. The founder and designer Emmanuel Dietrich is back for 2014 with a watch that he claims now "perfectly matches his exceptions." It is good to know that the designer himself is pleased with the end result. See the "1969" on the dial. I am not sure what that means right now but I can say that the official name of the brand is actually Dietrich 1969. I am guessing that is when he was born maybe?
By stark contrast, what we have here is a very high-end, haute horlogerie brand with an extensive manufacturing background drifting towards a more easy-going and, again, more affordable interpretation of what it had been doing so far. And that makes the already intriguing (and tough!) market segment of mid-to-high-end watches all the more interesting. Up to this point Parmigiani has been missing out on just about all the action that this very strong mid-high market segment offers and hence the Metro collection's importance is primarily coming from its potential to more fully represent the brand here. As such, the first and most important thing to get out of the way is to stay that the Metro itself is manufactured completely in-house as are all other Parmigiani watches, its case, dial and of course the movement are all made by the brand's "watchmaking hub".
5. Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece Seconde Mysterieuse
Rounding off September, we take a look at the Omega ’57 Co-Axial Chronograph, Arnold & Son’s DBG watch and what is purportedly China’s most complicated watch, the Wu Ji Bi-Axial Tourbillon. We also find out what Richard Mille, the man behind the brand is like, learn about the basics of watch modifications and visit the Hong Kong Watch Clock Fair 2013.
Speaking of the name, "ScubaTec" is clearly an extension of "TravelTec," which is another (more complicated) piece in the Patravi collection. The ScubaTec is more simple of course, but that is sort of the point. In fact, the entire idea of a dive watch is to be durable, easy to read, and dependable. The Patravi ScubaTec is all of this, but so are a lot of other watches that are a lot less expensive. Aside from some of the complex design elements such as the case and parts of the dial, pretty much all the functional elements of a watch like this are available on a ,000 watch. So while this is a handsome diver, it sort of feels as though Carl F. Bucherer should have upped the ante a bit. That perhaps could have been in the form of a unique feature such as including their in-house A1000 automatic movement.
So, is the BWC/01 a movement that is completely manufactured in-house by Bremont? No, and technically speaking, Bremont didn't say it was. Nevertheless, the language was admittedly not clear and the relationship with La Joux-Perret should have been stated with clarity. When anyone is asked to spend ,000 - ,000 (or more as is the case with the Bremont Wright Flyer watches) on a product, they should be given accurate and straight-forward information. It is common for manufacturers of all kinds to obfuscate information and want to appear as though they did everything themselves. We understand that, but given the incredibly close and detail-oriented nature of the watch industry no new product release should be done without considering "what people are going to find out."