For class and confidence it is hard to beat a Jaeger-LeCoultre Master collection timepiece. When I say this I mean two things. First of all, these are formal timepieces meant for fancy occasions and suits. A smart person could pull it off casually, but this is an elegant creation before it is a sport watch for sure. Second, the design, movement, and overall pedigree elicits a sense of confidence. Jaeger-LeCoultre not only makes their own movements, but also makes their own cases. They do so very well, and the competency of a watch like this is something watch lovers can recognize. It is a timepiece that just feels very comfortable in its own skin.
Design experimentation is everywhere in the "higher-end" Brand Names Hall. This area of the show feels more congenial and organized. There are booths with visitors from other countries such as Italy, Japan, Germany, Switzerland, and elsewhere. These people are keenly looking for mostly Asian retailers to buy their watches for sale in their stores. The most interesting brands were not Chinese in design, but mostly Chinese in production. A few Hong Kong brands such as o.d.m did stand out for their originality. Much more sober in their outlook of the market, Asians know that watches are not essential for most people. So fashion and fun are the primary motivators... with a few notable gadget watch exceptions. A German brand called Neolog was probably the highlight brand of the show for me.
When Chanel first released the J12 they likely had the same issue... where men simply could not take men's Chanel watches seriously. Nowadays, you have a lot of men wearing Chanel watches. Perhaps not all types of men. but enough to see how a feminine brand can successfully offer a male product. While not as revolutionary, perhaps the Octea Abyssal Automatic will be Swarovski's J12.
Inside the Romain Jerome DeLorean DNA watch is a Swiss mechanical automatic caliber RJ001-CH movement. It is a base Concepto and offers the time and 12 hour chronograph. Not the easiest chronograph in the world to use given that you need to count the markers on the subdials to read how long you've timed. An acceptable sacrifice given the design. I actually wondered why Romain Jerome didn't use more inspiration from the DMC-12's actual instrument cluster. Actually it seems that the car's instrument cluster is rather utilitarian and looks to be inspired by an aircraft cockpit - there's already enough watches that use cockpit gauges as inspiration.
We talk pilot watches and pilots - why do they love Breitling? A bit on the Asian watch market and a lot on the Brown Chronos Safe (for seriously expensive watch collections). Also, how does the iPhone 5 compare with high-end watches?
Hublot model reference is: 701.OQ.0180.RX and the retail price is GBP £32,300
My wrist is an average 7.25". As is usually the case with 649x movements, I have a bit of overhang over my wrist.
The watch case is only 40mm wide but wears larger given the widely spaced lugs and cushion shape of the case. At 8mm thick, the case is very svelte on the wrist. I would even argue that this is a watch for larger wrists given the short, but straight lug positioning. Over the dial and caseback are sapphire crystals.
The E Ink watch saga continues over at Phosphor as their World Time watch (that I reviewed here) gets turned into the World Time Sport. This less expensive model gets a bit more hip and loses its buttons. It it hard to visually miss this all-white model, and you'll also find that Phosphor offers the World Time Sport in all black and in a black case with orange strap version. I think E Ink is more than ready for mainstream.
What Graham has going for themselves is a certain sense of boyish charm. These high-end watches are a bit larger than life. They don't take themselves too seriously and are the grown-up equivalent of carrying around a giant Nerf gun to make yourself feel more bad-ass. I still think Nerf guns are pretty cool - which makes for some difficult moments when I 'accidentally' stroll through the toy section at Target.
I have a lot of respect for the people at Gevril and the Gevril Group overall - especially here in the US. However, this is a watch that I needed to go off on for a few reasons. You can see a lot of the BS in this industry by examining some of the details surrounding this watch and the way it is marketed. Items like this provide a good example at why being an educated watch buyer makes sense.
The Rolex models don't change much and some are so common that on a recent trip to the US east coast, I counted three of us, in close proximity, wearing Rolexes in the train at Atlanta's Hartsfield Jackson airport going from one terminal to the next.
An ad for the original Omega Ploprof stated, "It may not look pretty on the surface, but deep down it's beautiful." It is a curious statement for an official advertisement, but well sums up a lot of what the original early 1970s super diver was all about. Omega was one of the lead innovators along with Rolex in the market to supply serious professional divers (most notably the likes of Jacques Cousteau) with reliable diving watch instruments. In its heyday, the Ploprof (a contraction of "Plongeur Professional") was an extremely advanced tool based on years of development.
These are not just cosmetically enhanced Speedmaster watches with tricked-out dials. These are a new twist on the Speedmaster concept with a new movement. That latter part is sure to catch the attention of other watch movement nerds like me. The new movement is a sort of middle area between a base ETA movement and a totally in-house made Omega movement like the 9300.
The movement is a Swiss made Ronda 515, it is a simple, reliable 1 jeweled quartz movement with a date indicator which from what I experienced is pretty accurate gaining no more than ~13 seconds a month. The unidirectional rotating bezel has a small tritium indicator at the 12hr position and is easy to grip and to rotate, yet stays tight in its place and is hard to turn by mistake.
"I thought he was sleeping, but after he didn't respond to me shaking his cage, I knew something was wrong." Three years and eight months just wasn't enough time with Yellow Belly, my gerbil. I had wanted our love to last forever, I didn't know what to do. I called up a taxidermist nearby and brought the body to him. Unfortunately, I hadn't preserved Yellow Belly properly and only the gerbil pelt could be saved. "I used to spend hours brushing his golden orange fur." With eyes full of tears, the PetStraps founder happened to have glanced down at the watch on his wrist. "What was I going to do with a tiny gerbil pelt?" I thought about asking the taxidermist to tan the pelt so I could use it as some type of little pouch for my watch. Then it dawned on me, could this be a watch strap? The taxidermist was hesitant at first. The idea seemed macabre to him. I then proceeded to remind him exactly what it was he did for a living and he sobered up. He said to give him a week, and then come back. I'd have to supply the buckle parts though."
It isn’t a wild concept watch or something you want to wear only when you feel like a weekend military pilot. This version of the Bell & Ross BR 126 is just a sexy daily wear that is a little bit retro, and a lot of bit sexy. Comes on a strap or new metal bracelet. Beautiful.
The strap change system works really well. There is a pusher on the lugs that you press to release the strap. It clicks out and then clicks back in again. This system allows wearers to interchange Hublot straps which is likely to be a new and lucrative business for Hublot - as its watch owners can personally swap out straps as they like.