Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Six Outstanding Affordable Watches of 2015

Well made and honestly priced timepieces are uncommon but out there. Some of them even have fine in-house movements. This is our pick of the best from the class of 2015.

When your wallet is only postage stamp high

While we can wish for fantastically expensive watches, such watches remain fantasies for most of us. On the other hand, several notable affordable, but outstanding, timepieces were unveiled in 2015.

A couple of things stand out on this list. More than half the watches are powered by in-house movements, proving that well made proprietary movements need not be expensive. And two of the six come from brands that are better known as leather goods makers, demonstrating the considerable and impressive progress such brands have made in creating good timepieces.

Up Close with the Vacheron Constantin Harmony Tourbillon Chronograph

In a year full of new chronograph launches, the flagship chronograph from Vacheron Constantin is the Harmony Tourbillon Chronograph, featuring a newly developed in-house movement. Here's a detailed look at it, complete with original photos and price.

For its 260th anniversary, Vacheron Constantin introduced a slew of new chronographs this year, with the most beautiful arguably the Cornes de Vache 1955. But the Harmony chronographs are more significant, being equipped with the brand's first in-house chronograph movements. The Harmony line-up 
starts with the entry-level Harmony calibre 3300, continuing with the much pricier, but more spectacular Harmony Ultra-Thin Grande Complication Chronograph. And at the very top sits the Harmony Tourbillon Chronograph.

Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Introducing the Million Dollar Richard Mille RM 07-02 Pink Lady Sapphire

With a case made entirely of pink sapphire, the RM 07-02 Pink Lady Sapphire is one of the most exotic ladies' watches from Richard Mille to date. Slated to make its official debut at SIHH 2016, here's a preview with specs and pricing.

An extravagant variation on the RM007, Richard Mille's bestselling ladies wristwatch, the RM 07-02 Pink Lady Sapphire is clad in clear pink sapphire, a colour modelled on the Pink Lady cocktail. Inside is a movement with the base plate and bridges in 18k pink gold, a first for Richard Mille.

Monday, 28 December 2015

Introducing the Keaton Myrick 1 in 30 Chronometer Made in the U.S.A.

Based in Oregon, Keaton Myrick is a young watchmaker who has spent the last three years developing his own wristwatch, the 1 in 30. Here's a look at the most recent, and most elaborately finished, iteration of the timepiece.

Since making his debut in 2013, American watchmaker Keaton Myrick has refined his wristwatch, now known as the 1 in 30, a reference to the number that will be made. The calibre 29.30 inside has evolved in a striking fashion, now featuring more elaborate finishing while retaining the details that made it stand out at its introduction.

Friday, 25 December 2015

Year In Review 2015: Our 10 Top Stories Of The Year

As the year comes to a close, we revisit our top stories, which literally offer something for everyone, from a detailed look at the Apple Watch, to the $50,000 Seiko Credor Eichi. Here's the recap of the 10 stories for 2015.

The most read stories reflect the interests of our audience, starting with the Tudor North Flag Review at number ten, and culminating with our scoop revealing four brand new Simplicity wristwatches recently delivered by Philippe Dufour. That diversity is a credit to you, dear reader.

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Hands-On with the Tiffany & Co. East West in Tiffany Blue (with Price)

For those who want it overtly Tiffany, the New York jeweller recently introduced its East West wristwatch in the signature robin egg blue.

Inspired by 1920s wristwatches, the simple but striking East West is a driver's watch, with a 90 degree rotation of the dial. The dial colour options now includes Tiffany Blue, the trademarked shade that's synonymous with Tiffany & Co. Far from subtle, the new East West is nonetheless quite compelling on the wrist.

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

A Detailed Look at the F.P. Journe Stainless Steel 38 mm Set

Limited to just 38 sets, the F.P. Journe Steel 38 mm Set comprises the brand's most important wristwatches with steel cases in the discontinued 38 mm size. Here's a detailed look at the set of five.

When François-Paul Journe unveiled his first wristwatch in 1999, it was a tourbillon in a 38 mm platinum case. Since then F.P. Journe has evolved, with its watchcases growing to 40 mm and now 42 mm. The original 38 mm size came to an end this year, with the final run of watches being the limited edition Steel 38 mm set in stainless steel, comprising of five of the brand's signature timepieces - meriting its inclusion in our Christmas wish-list.

Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Photo Report: Vintage Rolex Asylum 2015 Year End GTG

In early December the largest vintage Rolex enthusiast club in South-East Asia gathered for its annual conclave in the sprawling metropolis of Jakarta, capital of Indonesia. Here's a report from @onioncrown, the Rolex-collecting roving reporter. 

This year’s annual Vintage Rolex Asylum (VRA) get-together was epic, with nearly 100 attendees. Not only was the event attended by collectors from across the 14,000 islands that make up Indonesia, but also from neighbouring countries and even a handful of likeminded enthusiasts from farther afield.

Introducing the Breguet Classique Moon Phase for Ladies - with a Grand Feu Enamel Dial

A new addition that will be officially unveiled at Baselworld 2016, the Classique Moon Phase for ladies is an elegantly simple complication in the quintessential Breguet style. 

Before SIHH 2016 is even upon us Breguet is revealing a peek at its line-up for Baselworld next year that happens in March. The Breguet Classique Phase de Lune Dame 9088 is a dainty wristwatch with a moon phase display and a fired enamel dial, in the style that is characteristic of Breguet.

Monday, 21 December 2015

Up Close with the Richard Mille RM 69 Erotic Tourbillon

The latest from the inimitable Richard Mille, the RM 69 Erotic Tourbillon displays a random message that ranges from the suggestive to the salacious when activated. We go up close with the RM 69, including original photos and price.

Erotic watches have a long tradition in watchmaking, going back centuries to pocket watches with tiny figures doing naughty things. Richard Mille reinterpreted the traditional erotic timepiece in a less graphic, perhaps more subtle, manner. Instead of depicting the act, the RM 69 Erotic Tourbillon relies on three rollers that display a random combination of words that together form a titillating statement.

Friday, 18 December 2015

The SJX Fantasy Christmas Wish List 2015

Being that time of the year, one can hope for gifts that will never come. It is after all the season of hope. In that tradition here is your correspondent's fantasy wish list for 2015. 

Some need no presents

The criteria for watches on the list is simple: introduced and available during the last year. To be clear, available means it was available for purchase sometime during the year. Price, naturally, is no object. 

Each of the watches on the list is what your correspondent humbly thinks is a good watch, with merits in design, movement construction or finishing. It's not a list that aims to spend spend fantasy money frivolously.

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Montblanc Unveils €9500 Automatic Chronograph with Annual Calendar

Montblanc combines the annual calendar and chronograph in this SIHH 2016 debut, pricing it competitively as has been its recent strategy, with the steel model coming in at just over US$10,000.

The Heritage Chronométrie Chronograph Quantième Annuel continues Montblanc's strategy of offering complicated timepieces at relatively affordable prices. It features an annual calendar - one that requires adjustment once a year at the end of February - and a chronograph. Though not as complicated as a chronograph with perpetual calendar, this combination of chronograph and annual calendar is actually less common, because at the usual price point of such watches it makes more sense to go more complicated.

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Up Close with the Most Awesome Ladies' Chronograph Wristwatch Ever

The Patek Philippe reference 7059 is an unusual creature, a delicately small ladies' wristwatch equipped with one of the most gorgeous and refined chronograph movements, the split-seconds calibre CHR 27-525 PS. We take a detailed look at the ref. 7059, complete with original photographs. 

As chronograph movements go, the Patek Philippe CHR 27-525 PS is one of the best, being exceptionally slim and compact, and a sight to behold. Most unusually, it's found inside the ref. 7059R-001, a ladies' wristwatch. While most ladies' timepieces are either simple or equipped with complications regarded as feminine (like a moon phase), the ref. 7059 is resolutely complicated in a manner that will harm the heart of the most steely watch geek.

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Pre-SIHH 2016: Piaget Introduces Hybrid Mechanical Watch with Quartz Regulator

Soon to be unveiled at SIHH 2016, the Piaget Emperador Coussin XL 700P is powered by a new hybrid movement with traditional automatic movement with an electromechanical regulator. Here's the scoop, along with official pricing.

Piaget celebrates the 40th anniversary of its first in-house quartz movement at SIHH 2016 with the Emperador Coussin XL 700P, powered by a quartz movement that integrates traditional mechanics, a peculiar combination of novelty and tradition. The calibre 700P has automatic winding, as well as a wheel train that drives the hands, but instead of a traditional Swiss lever escapement it's fitted with a hybrid oscillator, making it a hybrid of new and old.

Monday, 14 December 2015

Jaeger-LeCoultre Unveils Five New Watches for the Reverso's 85th Anniversary

Jaeger-LeCoultre marks the 85th anniversary of its signature timepiece in 2016 with five new models that run the gamut from a basic time-only model to the top of the line dual face-triple calendar. You'll find all you need to know below, with specs for all models.

Originally designed for polo players, with a swivelling case to protect the crystal, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso is 85 years old in 2016. The occasion is being marked with the introduction of a slew new Reverso wristwatches that will make their official debuts at SIHH 2016Starting with the basic Reverso Classic (available in three sizes no less), the line-up also includes variants of the Reverso Duo twin time zone, including the Reverso Tribute Calendar powered by the new calibre 853.

Saturday, 12 December 2015

Hands-On with the Glashütte Original Sixties Iconic Collection, the Secret Limited Edition

A striking departure from the typical Glashütte Original look, the Sixties Iconic Collection is made up of five timepieces with psychedelic dial colours that are limited to just 25 pieces each. We take a look at the line-up, with review, photos and price below.

The Glashütte Original Sixties Iconic Collection looks like it was designed at East German party after the Berlin Wall came down, characterised by vivid dial colours and patterns that are entirely unique yet convincingly retro. And unlike many limited edition watches made in large numbers, the Sixties Iconic Collection was not announced as a limited edition, but only 125 will be made.

Friday, 11 December 2015

AUCTION WATCH: Five Picks From Christie's Upcoming New York Watch Auction

Christie's will close the year with Rare Watches and Important Discoveries, the watch auction that will take place in New York on December 16, 2015, with nearly 200 lots on offer.

Christie's last watch auction of the year takes place at Rockefeller Centre in New York on December 16, with the Omega Speedmaster Moon Watch thematic auction the day before. With just under 193 lots, the sale is relatively small, but offering an diverse line-up of timepieces, ranging from singular vintage timepieces to contemporary haute horlogerie. Here's a look at five highlights.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Introducing the Ressence Type 5 Dive Watch

The Type 5 is the first dive watch from Ressence, featuring the brand's signature planetary time display inside an oil-filled capsule, with the addition of a diver's elapsed time bezel.

Belgian independent watchmaker Ressence has a house style that combines sleek, clean aesthetics with a clever time display driven by magnets contained inside an oil-filled module.  All of that is found in the Type 3, the quintessential Ressence wristwatch, that has now evolved into the Type 5, a dive watch rated to 100 m.

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Up Close with the Jaeger-LeCoultre Geophysic Universal Time

A world time wristwatch equipped with a deadbeat seconds movement, the Geophysic Universal Time is a modern take on Jaeger-LeCoultre's classic explorer's timepiece. Here's a hands-on look, complete with original photos, review and pricing.

Originally a wristwatch made for explorers and scientist in the 1950s, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Geophysic was reissued last year as a limited edition. Now the name has been applied to a new line of watches conceived with the same philosophy of functionality and vintage-inspired styling. The Geophysic Universal Time is the most elaborate of the Geophysic collection, featuring a simplified world time function and deadbeat seconds.

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

H. Moser & Cie. Unveils the Simplest Perpetual Calendar Ever

The Endeavour Perpetual Calendar Concept takes H. Moser & Cie.'s philosophy of clear and uncluttered design to the extreme by removing everything from the dial.

H. Moser & Cie. has reduced its perpetual calendar, already one of the most concise available, to the bare essentials, and then some. The Endeavour Perpetual Calendar Concept has a dial that is entirely void of lettering or markings of any kind, leaving it to the wearer to approximate the information displayed.

A Detailed Look at the Lange 1815 Tourbillon Handwerkskunst

The 1815 Tourbillon Handwerkskunst is a 30-piece limited edition with a hand-engraved dial and gorgeously finished movement. Here's an up close look at the watch, complete with original photos, specs and the price.

Introduced just last year, the 1815 Tourbillon is the entry-level tourbillon wristwatch from A. Lange & Söhne, if there is such a thing. The 1815 Tourbillon Handwerkskunst, on the other hand, is a beautifully elaborate limited edition, the latest in the Handwerkskunst series of watches that celebrates artisanal decoration. 

Monday, 7 December 2015

Pre-SIHH 2016: Cartier Introduces Three Complicated, Jewelled Timepieces for Ladies

Cartier will introduce a trio of complicated watches for ladies at SIHH 2016, each bejewelled and bearing the familiar Cartier aesthetic but equipped with an in-house mechanical movement.

Cartier demonstrates its historical prowess as a jeweller, and more recent accomplishments as a watchmaker, with the trio of ladies' watches that will make their debut at SIHH 2016. All three watches are entirely new - one even has a newly developed movement - but classically Cartier in style; they combine design, gem-setting and creative mechanical watchmaking.

Introducing the SevenFriday M1/02 United Arab Emirates Limited Edition

A limited edition sold only in Abu Dhabi, the SevenFriday M1/02 UAE Edition features Indo-Arabic numerals on the dial, along with a striking black and gold colour scheme with motifs inspired by the Emirates' history.

Created for its new boutique in Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the SevenFriday M1/01 UAE Edition has a predominantly black and gold colour scheme, along with Indo-Arabic numerals on the minute and hour discs. It's a variant of the SevenFriday M-series, characterised by its disc-based time indication and crown on the left of the case.

Saturday, 5 December 2015

Introducing the G-Shock x VEIL x adFunture Master of G Robot Special Editions

Casio has teamed up with VEIL and adFunture to create the Master of G special edition G-Shock watches, each accompanied by a robot figurine, exclusively available at G-Shock stores in Singapore

Inexpensive as it is, the Casio G-Shock is nonetheless one of the cult watches of our time. In its 30 years the G-Shock has been the subject of numerous collaborations, ranging from rapper Eminem to contemporary artist Takashi Murakami, making the world of collectible G-Shocks a little known but interesting place. The latest is the three-way partnership between Casio, toymaker adFunture and streetwear label VEIL, resulting in the Master of G special editions, each complete with a robot figurine - think of it as an MB&F Melchior for the common man.

Friday, 4 December 2015

Pre-SIHH 2016: Cartier Introduces its First Self-Winding Skeleton Wristwatch (with Original Photos & Price)

Soon to be officially launched at SIHH 2016, the Clé de Cartier Automatic Skeleton features a newly developed skeleton movement with automatic winding, a first for Cartier. We bring you a first look with original photos, specs and pricing.

Skeleton movements are a favourite of the Carole Forestier, the talented head of Cartier's movement development unit. Needless to say Cartier has excelled at creating open-worked movements, with the skeletonised Roman numeral dial (found on the Tank MC Skeleton for example), becoming a signature of the brand. Now for the first time, that distinctive style has now evolved to include an automatic movement with the new Clé de Cartier Automatic Skeleton.

Pre-SIHH 2016: Hands-On with the Cartier Crash Skeleton in Pink Gold (with Original Photos & Price)

Cartier introduces its iconic Crash wristwatch with a skeletonised form movement in pink gold, a limited edition that is the final run of the open-worked Crash. We bring you a first look with original photos, specs and pricing.

Cartier unveiled the first ever skeleton Crash wristwatch in 2015, and the 67-piece limited edition was a runaway success. At SIHH 2016 the Crash Skeleton will return in pink gold, also in a tiny run of just 67 pieces. And that will be it, the end of the skeletonised Crash wristwatch.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Panerai Announces White Dial, 42mm Radiomir 1940 3 Days Automatic for SIHH 2016

Panerai continues its run of smaller timepieces with the Radiomir 1940 3 Days Automatic Acciaio 42mm PAM655, a preview of what's to be officially unveiled at SIHH 2016.

Just months after the hand-wound Radiomir 1940 3 Days 42mm was introduced at Watches&Wonders 2015, Panerai has unveiled another smallish watch, the Radiomir 1940 3 Days Automatic Acciaio PAM00655, featuring a white dial with ivory Super-Luminova. Powered by the P.4000 micro-rotor movement, the new PAM655 is more evidence that the balance is tilting in favour of small watches, even for brands that specialise in oversized timepieces.

Introducing Atelier de Chronométrie and its Hand-Finished Chronometer Wristwatch

Atelier de Chronométrie is the latest to join the ranks of independent watchmakers specialising in vintage-inspired chronometer wristwatches. The Spanish watchmaker's first timepiece is based on the 1950s Omega calibre 266, entirely reworked and decorated by hand.

Founded by Barcelona-based vintage watch dealer Santiago Martinez Rajasa, Atelier de Chronométrie aims to create classic chronometers using rejuvenated vintage movements. To complete and decorate the movements, Rajasa recruited watchmaker Moebius Rassmann. Their first product is the Atelier de Chronométrie wristwatch, equipped with an Omega calibre 266 from the 1950s that is tested and certified by the Besançon observatory in France.

Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Habring2 Unveils Limited Edition Chrono COS for's 20th Anniversary

TimeZone marks its 20th year with a special Habring2 chronograph featuring the brand's novel crown activation mechanism, and a specially designed dial inspired by classic 20th century chronographs.

The pioneer in the world of internet watch forums, celebrates 20 years with the Habring2 Chrono COS TZ20, a limited edition chronograph with a vintage-style dial and unique crown-operated chronograph mechanism. As is typical of Habring2's timepieces, the Chrono COS TZ20 is solidly made, cleverly constructed and affordable.