The release of this watch comes at an interesting time, right after the Swatch Group purchased Harry Winston. Unlike the formerly independent American brand, Swatch Group's control and leadership shift is altering what Harry Winston used to be. What role does Opus have in Harry Winston's future? That is hard to say. Personally I don't think that the Swatch Group will want to continue it. Perhaps for a little while, but not for too long. Opus doesn't seem to go with the diamonds and elegance theme they have for the brand, and Swatch Group is certainly not about giving a brand a face (i.e. the watch maker partner) other than the CEO. I could be wrong. I hope I am wrong, but my instincts tell me that Opus is too complicated to keep alive given its return on investment through sales to the mainstream consumer.
Whether buying for big money or on a budget, the same rules apply. Go for the best condition you can afford and remember that originality is key. The lower cost does mean a lower risk so the purchase should be much less angst-ridden. Don’t follow the herd, chasing the same few "grail" watches. Learn your history and have some fun with watches that can be both cheap and interesting. Which low-cost rarity would you like to own?
Omega isn't officially talking about the Omega Aqua Terra Chronograph GMT yet so we didn't get the precise size. Though, it is about 45mm wide, wearing large on the wrist but a bit thinner than say, the Planet Ocean Chronograph. I personally prefer the Planet Ocean in its three-hand or GMT form, and believe that if you want an Omega with a chronograph, it should be an Omega Aqua Terra or Speedmaster.
aBlogtoWatch takes you inside the new factory of Detroit-based Shinola. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past several months, you’ve undoubtedly heard the buzz about a new watch brand, one that hails from within our own shores – right here in the good old US of A. The brand is Shinola, and the buzz has been loud. Deservedly so. There hasn’t been a large brand manufacturing watches in the United States for decades, and a return to that industry – particularly in a home base such as Detroit – is exciting.
The Fossil Swiss collection consists of three models, each with a few versions. I am focusing exclusively on the mechanical model called the Swiss Automatic. In addition, there are Swiss quartz versions in the Fossil Swiss Chronograph and Fossil Swiss Day + Date. The first thing that struck me about the Fossil Swiss collection was the incredible lack of substance. I mean the watches are decent enough, but they seem to be so committee-created that even the marketing copy lacks soul. It is just a collection of buzzwords and applicable terms. Like a cliche on Swiss watch brand advertising, the carefully made micro site on Fossil's website merely floats terms like "timeless" and "craftsmanship" in front of our eyes without so much as an attempt to explain how they are timeless or what craftsmanship even means in this context.
It was not however until months later that I had a chance to experience the Glashutte Original Grande Cosmopolite timepiece hands-on. As a limited edition of just 25 pieces, there won't be many of these. One has to wonder why a brand even goes to that effort. It is a branding experience for sure, but think of it through the rationalization of any normal mass-volume product maker. Three to four years of development and prototyping to make just 25 watches? Maybe a few more after that. You'd need to charge an arm and a leg just to break even. Which is actually what tends to happen given that pieces like the highly complex Grande Cosmopolite are brand makers versus money makers.
“Of course, it is always a challenge because when we realize a mechanism or function never done before, at least not in this type of configuration, requires a lot of "know-how" and updating."
ABTW: How many of these watches will you make, how much will they cost, and exactly how do people buy them?
Marc Hayek does in fact race and enjoy the motor sport lifestyle. While Blancpain doesn't exactly sell Lamborghini-branded timepieces, these L-Evolution sport "Super Trofeo" models are as close as it gets. Even the subsidiary seconds dial is shaped like the Lamborghini shield logo. Traditionally I haven't been a fan of these models from a design perspective. The quality was there, but I just didn't "get" what they were going for. There are actually some non-sport L-Evolution models that are nice, but they seem to have little to do with Lamborghini or auto racing. Then I was able to check out this L-Evolution Split Seconds Flyback Chronograph and I finally found a Blancpain L-Evolution sport model that I really liked.
Perhaps IWC's new 40mm wide Ingenieur dress watch was the most talked about new Ingenieur piece for 2013, but for those who like larger sport watches, these more simple-dialed Ingenieur pieces will fit the bill. Whether it is a phase or just because I like loud watches, I fully appreciate smaller dress watches, but simply have so little time in my life to wear them. When choosing a watch to wear on a daily basis, I tend to opt for three-hand sport watches that are at least 42-44mm wide. Knowing that about myself makes me pay close attention to those new watches that would probably see a lot of time on my wrist. At SIHH 2013, IWC debuted two such models, the Ingenieur Automatic AMG Black Series Ceramic and the Ingeniuer Automatic Carbon Performance.
MSJ: I'm glad you asked this. It's really important to me that I make my straps 100% by hand, with the most rudimentary tools. In my daily life as a designer, I work with software where there are so many program functions that I feel that the computer 'robs' me of part of the process. Don't get me wrong, software is great and saves a lot of useful time, but I do miss some of the hands-on illustration and typography. I guess you could say that making straps lets me solve the problem in long-form. The slower pace and basic tools influence the design along the way. It also allows me to enjoy the process and get to know the materials.
The semi-finished components need to be decorated with the required markings, such as numerals, minute tracks, printed logos and other - often very intricate - shapes. A so called tampon is used to apply the paint. Shaped like a tennis-ball cut in half and made of rubber, the tampon first presses against an engraved metal plate on which ink is applied, and then against the dial, leaving the precise print it just picked up. The dial has to go to the oven every time a new marking is applied. All this makes for a very time-consuming and painstaking process, until the component can make it to the last stage.
Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch
This is not De Bethune's first go at a watch with this overall look but I feel that the way in which they have minimized the impact of the time and moon phase display has allowed additional dial real estate (and visual attention) to be invested in the nature of the design. Not only will the DB28 Skybridge be a perfectly functional and reliable dress watch, but you have to assume there is a sense of occasion when you choose to wear a watch like this. While not a simple-looking watch, the De Bethune DB28 Skybridge does offer a distinctive and enchanting wrist presence that would be sure to rival anything else in your collection.
Thanks to Mark S. from Cleveland, Ohio for a follow-up wrist shot and some thoughts on the Nivrel Deep Ocean GMT watch he won back in August here on aBlogtoRead.com. Here are some words from him on the German timepiece:
The SoH watch is designed to use a quartz movement, which probably makes sense given the novelty of the design. The beauty of the design is in its versatility. The SoH watch could have a face-like dial to emphasize the silliness of the googly eyes, or a totally black dial to make the design look a bit more mysterious. That it actually tells the time is an added benefit.
Recently I got very interested in automatic / self-winding watches. I've noticed that the cheaper models often make a lot of noise, both ticking and rotor swings. Now I'm wondering if that's normal and what level of noise is "acceptable" for an automatic watch. I there for example a method to tighten everything up?
I just realized that this watch has nothing to do with Bremont's aviation theme. It does however have a lot to do with Bremont's British theme. As a pilot watch brand, Bremont has an uphill battle fighting greats such as IWC and Breitling. As a primarily British heritage and pilot watch brand they place themselves in a new class. The best part is that it isn't a PR show. Bremont was started by and run by the English. They also plan to move as much of their production as possible to the UK from Switzerland moving forward as they continue to re-invest in themselves. Those are some handsome goals, and among fellow English watch brands, Bremont is typically seen as a leader of the pack.
Congrats to Brett R. from New South Wales, Australia who was the winner of the Xetum Tyndall watch giveaway from January 2013 on aBlogtoWatch. Enter for a chance to win a Casio ProTrek watch here this month on aBlogtoWatch.
Cartier Tortue XXL Multiple Time Zones Watch
This my friends is how watch lovers show off their passion.
Memorigin Tourbillon Watches From Hong Kong
Chronoswiss is likely a brand that doesn't need much introduction, even though we don't hear much about them. I've reviewed some of their collection in the past, and they are well thought out pieces with impeccable construction and high-quality materials. Their latest model, a special edition to commemorate a trans-global adventure, follows that same path.