As you can see, the outer ring of the dial has a list of major cities, one for each major time zone. Set in from that a bit is a bi-color ring that is actually what is used to read out the time in all of those cities. What you do is that you set the city that represents your home timezone to the 12 o'clock position, and then the movement does its work, letting you read the current time under every city name from the rotating 24-hour disc. The reason for the bi-color of this disc is so you have "at a glance" capability to tell if it is day or night in the city.
Speaking of tritium tubes, the Ball Engineer Master II Slide Chronograph is making use of their new flat tubes on the dial. We have seen these before on the Marvelight, but those were much wider. Here, they almost approach the width of the round tubes. This keeps things a bit more subtle, but it also allows for (or at least, it seems to to my eye) a more even glow when viewed in the dark. It also keeps things balanced with the handset, which still relies on the round tubes.
The L’Epée manually-wound clock movement consists of 334 parts and operates at 2.5Hz (18,000). Even though it is a clock movement meant to be stationary, the balance wheel system has an Incabloc shock protection system, because MB&F assumes people will be moving around the clock a bit more than they might most other desk or table clocks. The long power reserve is stored in five mainspring barrels.
Inside the Jacob & Co. Billionaire watch is the caliber JCAM09 manually-wound tourbillon movement with fully skeletonized bridges. Time is displayed via the blued hand with diamond hour markers (of course). Under 12 o'clock is a skeletonized mainspring barrel (72 hours of power reserve) and the 3Hz tourbillon sits over 6 o'clock. The entire movement is made up of 167 parts. I think it goes without saying that a timepiece like the Jacob & Co. Billionaire Watch needed to have a tourbillon - it just wouldn't be the same with out it.
Its probably both a good and a bad thing that the Tiffany & Co. East West watches come exclusively with Swiss quartz movements. That allows the cases to be extremely thin, as well as helps reduce the price (with that said, they aren't, per se, inexpensive, as they are still Tiffany & Co products). Containing quartz movements might fend off certain hardcore mechanical watch lovers, but I think it opens up the Tiffany & Co. East West collection to more people. As watch lovers, we don't always consider that "regular" people aren't as into mechanical watches as we are.
Five new watches from Dodane certainly bolster the Dodane Type 23 range. The prices of these featured five range from €3,550 all the way up to €7,250. There are loads of variations too, with most of the watches coming in a choice of steel or PVD and at a significant cost difference. It's definitely worth checking out the Dodane website in the coming weeks to see the models launched at Baselworld 2015 in greater detail. Dodane1857.com
As the strategic head of the watch division of LVMH, Mr. Biver enjoyed a pretty interesting job having no official office or even title – which actually meant he still spent a lot of time doing Hublot things. Part of his mandate was to help TAG Heuer - which was originally purchased for its heritage and rapport with younger consumers. TAG Heuer, however, for a series of reasons, started to abandon its strong position as an entry-level Swiss luxury brand and kept creeping up in price. That turned out to be pretty bad for business in the long term, and it was decided that TAG Heuer needed to “return to its roots.”
It is very fascinating to see how Eterna's engineers managed to create something modular that is to a tenth of a millimeter the exact same size as the 7750. The reason for that is, of course, simple: the Eterna Caliber 39 was purposefully designed to be an alternative to ETA's movements, and the only way to offer an alternative to brands is by allowing them to keep their present case sizes and internal construction, saving them the enormous costs of re-engineering their cases. Despite the similarities, the Eterna Caliber 39 provides 60 hours of power reserve, half a day more than the 48-hour life of the 7750 movement family. That may just be enough if you put the watch down on Friday and only wear it again on Monday morning – a time frame all modern mechanical watches should cover, in my opinion.
Specifically – for those watchnerds interested in these subtle details of Rolex's latest and most advanced movement – the thickness of the pallet stones has been reduced by half, while the contact surfaces of the escape wheel teeth have been doubled. Also, the escapement system is no longer in alignment, but slightly offset, thus multiplying the lever effect; and last, the escape wheel has a cut-out design to make it lighter and reduce its inertia. All these seemingly minuscule changes account for the improved efficiency of an escapement design that has been around for over two centuries.
The Aquascope dial is remarkably legible but unsurprisingly so, thanks to the large applied hour markers and generously sized hands. I really like the combo of the very stately arrow-shaped hour hand and the sword-style minute hand. The dial is also generously lumed and well balanced, with an attractive flange ring where the minute markers are placed. Over the dial is a flat AR-coated sapphire crystal, and around it is a uni-directional rotating diver's bezel. I also happen to like brushed steel rotating bezels - which the Aquascope in this form has.
I wouldn't have believed it unless I saw it with my own eyes, but would you guess that Breitling - the company with its own jet team (and jet man) - is releasing a new pilot watch for 2015? I know, amazing and totally unexpected! All jesting aside, the new Breitling Chronoliner is a really decent-looking and not top-of-the-line-priced aviator watch that harkens back to the beauty and grace of Breitling's 1950s and 1960s design. It even comes complete with a "panda dial," so I think the Breitling Chronoliner is going to be a hit for the brand this year.
Watch Amish isn't the type of account to say any of that though. Watch Amish exists as a new breed of polite rebels who are increasingly tired of what the watch industry and collector community has allowed and helped created on places like Instagram. In addition to finding Watch Amish really funny (thank you to our Managing Editor David Bredan for initially pointing Watch Amish out to me), I applaud the people behind Watch Amish for using one of the most powerful weapons of social change - humor.
If we ignore the thermometer for a minute, you can plainly see that the watch is very much a dress watch, especially with the dark grey dial we had in for review (you can also get it with a white dial). The 39.5mm wide and 10.5mm thick case is made from 18k rose gold, and features a very high polish on it.
We don't have too many technical specs for the watches, but having seen them hands-on, I can say that they are on-par with the quality of other Frederique Constant and Alpina watches. Frederique Constant will produce the "business" Horological Smartwatch, and Alpina will produce the sporty models and the first women's watches. For men, the timepieces are about 44mm wide and perhaps 12mm or so thick. The ladies' versions are smaller at perhaps 36mm wide, with a pleasantly modern feminine style (very much like a boyfriend watch - but with available diamonds). Prices for the watches will start at about 0 or so and go up to about ,500 - ,000 for the top-end models with diamonds. I would say that the average price of a Horological Smartwatch will be about ,200 when they start to become available for sale in May or June 2015.
Nevertheless, it seems as though then Zenith Movado (an American company) produced unofficial Museum Dial watches without permission, credit, or compensation to Nathan George Horwitt. The records I've found don't all agree on when this started and whether these unofficial watches started being produced in the late 1940s or not until the later 1950s. Whenever it began, so started a long legal battle and difficulty for Horwitt to benefit from his design. Furthermore, the "Museum Dial" name did not actually come until later.
Now, for the differences: the odd one out has to be the Omega Speedmaster Dark Side Of The Moon Black Black, probably the most surprising model of the lot, with – and prepare for some darker-than-dark stuff here – a black case, black ceramic dial "mattened" with laser technology, blackened applied indices, and black Super-LumiNova on the indexes and two dots at 12. Given the dark theme and look of the original Omega Speedmaster Dark Side Of The Moon (review here), Omega decided to take it all the way, making for one of the most impressive all-black high-end watches available today. The Omega Speedmaster Dark Side Of The Moon Black Black joins a slowly but steadily growing group of all black watches which, among many others, includes the Bell & Ross BR03-92, a number of different Hublot offerings (like this tourbillon minute repeater), or the Romain Jerome Batman DNA.
At 45mm wide, the newer Big Bang case (originally released in 2013) offers that bold Hublot style with a lot more comfort than the King Power case (that you may have noticed Hublot hasn't been using all that much). I continue to love the pushers that offer a quick release for each of the straps that allows you to mix up the look of most Big Bang 45 cases. Of course, there is a proprietary lug connector system, but when you are spending these prices it probably won't irritate you too much to go to Hublot for new strap options.
When most watch lovers hear "Greenwich," they often think of Greenwich, England which is home to the Royal Observatory and the Prime Meridian (hence GMT being Greenwich Mean Time). But if you are an affluent watch lover in the greater New York City area, you might instead think, "that's where I live." Normally you would not expect to find a high end watch store in a quiet town of 62 thousand. But as a desirable community (rated in July 2005 by Money magazine as 1st on its list of the 100 Best Places to Live in the United States) within 40 minutes of midtown Manhattan, Greenwich, Connecticut and the surrounding area has more than its share of watch lovers. And the local store to indulge their passion is Manfredi of Greenwich, Ltd. Roberto Manfredi has operated Manfredi Jewels in downtown Greenwich since 1988. I had the pleasure of sitting across the table from Roberto at a dinner at BaselWorld 2014 (but too far apart to chat with him at that time).
While I would have been excited to see the Beta 21 inside the Piaget Black Tie's husk of white gold, industrially, it might have been impossible to execute (and let's face it, those of us who crave high-end quartz are a small cult compared to the mechanical fetishists among us - of which I'm one as well!). While "automatic" is currently shorthand for "luxury" as a result of said quartz crisis, the Beta 21 was playing on another level, and I wish it would have a retro revival like everything else these days!
The Horological Smartwatch with an MMT movement will connect to a host phone via Bluetooth and there will, of course, be a companion app that is vital to the experience. The watch itself only displays the time (without seconds), date, and a progress indicator meant to help the wearer know whether or not they have reached their daily activity goals. The sole input device on the watch is the crown which is just a pusher. That means you cannot even set the time unless you go into the app. I am a bit concerned about the necessary level of connectivity the watch has to your phone (iPhone or Android), but that is likely due to the fact that I simply have yet to live with such a device.