We are about a year away from a total re-shuffle of the Royal Oak for its 40th anniversary - but for 2011 Audemars Piguet has created arguably the best looking Royal Oak Offshore watch ever. Next year is also the 20th Anniversary of the Royal Oak Offshore I believe as well. The redo of the "ROO" (Royal Oak Offshore) for 2011 is simple, but involves a number of refinements and design tweaks. When speaking with Audemars Piguet's lead designer Octavio Garcia, he describes the new collection as "restrained" and more focused. These are meant to be more simple looking watches that emphasize the strengths of the collection and how its personality has developed over time. Some past Royal Oak Offshore watches have been accused of being too busy by some tastes. While I personally see merit in some of the more aggressive and experimental Royal Oak Offshore watches of previous years, the new models are certainly more broad in their appeal. They seem to offer a technical, polished look that suits the Royal Oak Offshore concept quite well.
The Tread 2 will have a lot of material upgrades and a more sophisticated design. It will also be very accurate and come in a smaller package. I reviewed the very cool Tread 1 here, and you can see that it is a large timepiece. The Tread 2 will have a 38mm wide case that is 42mm tall and 14.5mm thick. That is a lot smaller than the Tread 1. The Tread 2 will initially be in steel, but DLC black versions could easily follow. It will again have a rubber strap.
Therefore, brands create artificially high prices and invest heavily in marketing to craft an image that it hopes will adhere to concepts of luxury that you value given your desire to have nice things that are well made and that other people who "know" might appreciate.
Limited to 104 pieces the Hublot Niemeyer watch is in tantalum (don't ask why the caseback says "tantalum" as well as "titanium"). In the Aero Bang collection, it has a skeletonized dial and overall black/gray style. I do really like the "lemon and lime" colors of the hands and hour markers. Good for Brazil, or 7-Up.
Like all Pro-Trek models the full list of features is long. In this model these include, but are not limited to, world time, full calendar data, several alarms, automatic backlighting, stopwatch, count-down timer, moon phase, tidal data, thermometer, compass, barometer, altimeter, and more. There is a bit of a learning curve to figuring it all out, but long time Casio users won't have any trouble figuring it all out.
Again the SpidoLite II has a skeletonized dial – though a bit different here compared to the original model. That of course has a lot to do with the movement used inside the new watch. For this series Linde Werdelin chose to work with Concepto and its owner the Jacquet family. Inside the SpidoLite II is the Concepto caliber 2251 automatic. Originally based on the Valjoux 7750 I believe, the 2251 is entirely made in-house by Concepto and features a subsidiary seconds, and date in addition to the time. The date is displayed on a specially design disc that matches the look of the dial and is quite attractively integrated into the dial design. For legibility and to soften the mostly monochromatic look of the watch, Linde Werdelin wisely chose blued-steel hands on the dial.
A small part of this is Longine's massive popularity in China; I think they are the number two selling brand in China (behind Omega). That's a pretty big deal if you think about it from a sales perspective. It also says something about the Chinese market who have an incredible appreciation (and lust) for history. From what I understand, before communism took over in China, brands such as Longines were associated with much of the cultural and artistic freedom that took place in major cities such as Shanghai. Today's Chinese people look very fondly upon this period and are drawn to the brands, style, and ideas associated with the time.
A central chronograph optimizes legibility by using the central dial for the chronograph seconds and minutes. When the chronograph is not activated the hands literally sit right on top of one another. Using the central dial for both the chrono seconds and minute ups the readability factor by a lot. Further, Clerc's design of the hands makes it so that the hour and minute hands for the time don't blend in with the chronograph hands.
LUM-TEC Combat B7 Watch Review
Wrist Time Reviews
12 Commentsby Ariel Adams
LUM-TEC Combat B7 Watch Review
For Max Busser of MB&F, the Horological Machine collection of watches are extensions of the things that inspired him while growing up. Things such as race cars, planes, and spaceships. The Legacy Machines use this same idea, but under the fantasy assumption that Max was born 100 years earlier. The idea makes sense when he talks about it. Busser is talented at delivering his ideas and motives so naturally you'd believe them to be part of his overall life plan. Spoken from anyone else's mouth, this concept might make you scratch your head. So please, imagine if you will a Max Busser born in the late 19th century and focused on the future, as see by the world then. What would inspire him? Well according to Busser it would be things such as the Eiffel tower and people such as Jules Verne. This watch is about retro-futurism.
I played the first Resident Evil game on the first Playstation when I was a teenager. Since then I tried to play as many of the major games as possible. These innovative survival horror games put you in a dark world with a very elaborate set of stories... and zombies. You mostly played as a character who was part of a SWAT team style organization called STARS. You went into investigate issues that often related to apocalyptic outbreaks, zombies, and just general weird stuff going on. The first game was set in a mansion, while subsequent games put you in cities, on islands, and in complex underground lairs. Combat and resource collecting was always a big part of the games. You only had a limited amount of ammo, so you needed to use it carefully when killing all the things that tried to kill you. Tools and strong weapons were a really big part of the game series' appeal.
2010 saw the watch industry as a whole finally step into the Internet's living room. Watch brands are finally realizing how important the Internet is from marketing and sales standpoint - and then they totally lost track of reality. Expectations from social media was utterly unrealistic, with brands thinking Facebook and Twitter is some magic way of getting new customers. Time to sober up and get real. Social media is for sharing information and offering a communication access point. Not some news ticker feed that people are going to sit there and watch. The worst offenders are those who "cry wolf" with their fans and followers offering weeks and weeks of pointless crap before anything interesting is actually communicated (if ever). Stop using social media as some self-generated yearbook and figure it out.
Balance frequency: 21,600bph/3Hz
Number of components: 311
So basically what Breguet did is force people who buy this watch to rethink what certain dials are used for. Nothing on the watch feels intuitive. You see certain scales, and placements of dials on the watch and want it to do one thing, when in reality is does another. I see two thin hands on the main dial, and I think rattrapante. I see a linear scale style dial and I think power reserve indicator. I see a synchronized 24 hour hands and I think it is for the main time, not the second time zone. There is just so much to remember with the Type 22 (XXII) watch. I do further fear that the movement is too complex. I could be totally wrong, but I think that it will take Breguet a while to work the kinks out of this complex little mechanical dancing number.
Dial indication: Central hours and minutes, small seconds disc at 9 o’clock
Montblanc joins fellow Richemont brand Cartier in offering much of their product range online. The pleasant looking eCommerce site is rather simple and easy to use. Gone is much of the annoying Flash animations and complex UI screens of the past. I am happy that they focused on ergonomics versus some convoluted theatrical eShop platform that might have been expected a few years ago. So check out their eShop if you are interested in Montblanc stuff, here is a direct link to viewing the Montblanc watch collection online.
The original Winch Vertical Tourbillon has two windows to see the dial with a middle section separating them. The Scuderia Ferrari One still has the middle section, but just one sapphire crystal over the entire face of the watch. This is where the Ferrari logo sits - on a carbon fiber middle rod. Very much in line with the Ferrari look. The movement itself is something anyone can enjoy. It is very cool to operate and watch in action. Cabestan has done an extremely good job with it. The concept has quirks of course, but you genuinely feel that it is something worth what they charge.
UPDATE: Click here to see my growing list of all the Only Watch 2011 auction pieces.