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Baselworld

Jason Pitsch

Chopard L.U.C. Perpetual Chrono Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

This year at Baselworld, Chopard introduced one of their most complicated timepieces ever. Produced in-house by their higher-end manufacture (L.U.C.), the L.U.C. Perpetual Chrono boasts a vertical coupling-clutch column-wheel flyback chronograph with a perpetual calendar, along with an impeccably finished haute horology dial, movement, and case. Intricate details of the dial include a gray ruthenium-toned sunburst satin-brushed and hand-guilloché gold dial, with beams radiating from the prominent twin-aperture date window at 12. White or rose gold rhodium plated Roman numerals (depending on the case material) are applied by hand to the dial, surrounded by a snailed silver-toned inner bezel ring – with red and black transfers. Rhodium plated Dauphine-shaped hands, in white or rose gold, are used to indicate hours, minutes, small seconds, day, month, chronograph (seconds, minutes, hours - designed with red tips), and phases of the moon. There

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Jason Pitsch

H. Moser & Cie Swiss Alp Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

Back in January, H. Moser & Cie received announced their Swiss mechanical watch that was inspired by the Apple Watch, which not surprisingly, received a lot of press. At the time, our Contributing Editor, Josh Shanks, wrote about it from the perspective of a tech guy and watch collector. In March, at Baselworld, Moser had a working prototype (pictured), which I got to see up close. The first thing I thought was that it does have the exact dimensions of an Apple Watch. However, after looking up the dimensions, the Moser watch is actually taller and wider than both the 38 mm and 42 mm Apple Watch. Interestingly, the Moser Swiss Alp watch is 2/10ths of a millimeter thinner, for those of you counting. So, it is not exactly the same dimensions, but overall, the look and proportions are very

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Jason Pitsch

Rolex Cosmograph Daytona Ceramic Bezel 116500LN Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

This year at Baselworld, by far, the most talked about watch release has been the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona Ref 116500LN (which replaces Ref. 116520 that was first introduced in 2000). Over the 16 year period, a number of incremental changes have been made to the Daytona Chronograph. The caliber 4130 automatic movement was enhanced with a blue Parachrom hairspring, which improves rate accuracy thanks to its anti-magnetic properties. The previously green Superluminova material was changed to Rolex’s proprietary Chromalight material, which notably lights up blue. A modern spring loaded clasp was added along the way. While the original flange had no writing, the word “ROLEX” is repeated, as seen in all current Rolex timepieces. Also, the new outer chapter ring (for minutes and seconds), is now marked with 5 graduations in between each hour index as opposed to twenty-five. And

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Jason Pitsch

Frederique Constant Slimline Manufacture Perpetual Calendar

Jason Pitsch

Earlier this year, at Baselworld 2016, Frederique Constant unveiled a new in-house manufactured perpetual calendar timepiece, created by Manuel Da Silva Matos (R&D director) and Pim Koeslag (Technical director). Coming from a brand known for accessibility, it should be no surprise that this is one of the most affordable mechanical perpetual calendar timepieces on the market. The Slimline Manufacture Perpetual Calendar is powered by the new 4Hz (28,800 kph) automatic movement (caliber FC-775), which drives hours, minutes, moonphase, and perpetual calendar functions. The movement measures just 6.7 mm thick, and the components are rhodium plated, with chamfered edges. The main bridge features circular Geneva stripes, and the mainplate has a perlage decoration. Furthermore, the rotor is gold plated, with a straight grained finish, and a relief engraving. In total, the movement consists of 191 components, 78 of which are for

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Jason Pitsch

Omega Speedmaster CK2998 Limited Edition

Jason Pitsch

One of the most interesting debuts from Omega in 2016 was the Speedmaster CK2998 Limited Edition, a throwback to their original reference 2998-1 from 1959. Omega designers borrowed some key design cues from the past, mixed with modern elements, to create a contemporary version of the 2998. The Lance-shaped hands (Omega calls them “Alpha-shaped”) for the hours, minutes, and all three subdials, are from the original. Straight-lugs (versus twisted-lugs) also pay homage to the past model. Just as seen on the re-edition Speedmaster from 2013. Not to mention, there are no crown guards – another nod to the past models. A few more noteworthy retro features are the “lollipop” seconds hand, and the “BASE 1000” writing on the bezel. Having said that, the bezel is made of ceramic, unlike previous models that featured a black insert. Surely appealing to collector

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Jason Pitsch

Ludwig Neomatik Champagner Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

After launching the Neomatik line last year, in 2016, NOMOS Glashutte introduced a series of twelve watches with the new DUW 3001 movement, which is now equipped with the new in-house regulation system. The models included are the Minimatik, Tangente, Metro, Orion, and Ludwig, which continue to be available with white silver-plated or champagne-colored dials. Also, the Tetra line is now available with an automatic movement. The Neomatik series (which is the brand’s automatic collection of watches) is powered by the 3.2 mm thick DUW 3001, which allows for slim, elegant timepieces. Despite the thinness, each movement is capable of achieving chronometer accuracy. According to the manufacture, “This high rate accuracy can now be achieved more simply and quickly in DUW 3001, as this caliber is equipped with NOMOS’ own DUW regulatory system. It replaces the Triovis system and allows

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Jason Pitsch

Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

Like the Bathyscaphe Chronograph Flyback Ocean Commitment that debuted in 2014, this year Blancpain launched a plasma grey ceramic version of the three-hand Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe, with the same deep blue dial and bezel. Distinguished by the matte grey plasma ceramic case – that measures 43.60 mm x 13.83 mm – the new Bathyscaphe is a truly contemporary dive watch, despite its rich diving heritage dating back to the 1950s. Like the case, the unidirectional rotating dive bezel is crafted in matte grey ceramic, that has been satin-brushed, along with a polished blue ceramic insert, dive scale, and a single lume-filled Liquidmetal marker at 12 o’clock. Matching the bezel is a stunning, deep blue sunburst pattern dial, punctuated by polished Liquidmetal hour makers, and rectangular-shaped grey hour and minute hands, along with a baton-shaped central seconds sweep hand with a

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Jason Pitsch

Blancpain Villeret Quantième Annuel GMT Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

Previously only offered in precious metal, the Blancpain Villeret Quantième Annuel GMT is now available in stainless steel. The new steel model measures 40 mm x 11.04 mm, same dimensions as before. The case is fully polished, along with the crown, which features the company logo engraved in relief. Instead of an intricate sunray guilloche pattern, as seen on previous models, the dial has a smooth matte white surface. The dial layout stayed the same. An annual calendar with individual rectangle apertures, one after the other, displays the day, date, and month – with ease. Long, skeletonized leaf-shaped hands, crafted from stainless steel, and polished, indicate hours and minutes. The hour indices are marked with hand applied, polished stainless steel Roman numerals. For seconds, there is a centrally mounted baton-shaped hand, in polished steel, with a logo motif counterweight that

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Jason Pitsch

Tudor Black Bay Dark Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

The Heritage Black Bay, first launched in 2012, is Tudor’s best-selling collection. Based on the first 1954 Tudor Submariner (Ref. 7922), along with design elements borrowed from multiple subsequent Submariners, the Black Bay is not a re-edition, instead, it is a contemporary re-interpretation of the original. Building on the success of the core model, last month a day before Press Day at Baselworld, in addition to debuting the Black Bay Bronze, Tudor launched the Black Bay Dark, which like the Bronze, is somewhat of a departure from the rest of the Black Bay collection. Scenes from the launch which took place just ahead of Baselworld 2016 Unlike the larger 43 mm diameter bronze-alloy case from the Bronze model, the Black Bay Dark is in stainless steel and has the same dimensions (41 mm x 12.75 mm) as the Black Bay

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Jason Pitsch

Mille Miglia GTS Automatic Speed Black Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

Since 1988, Chopard has been the official timekeeper of the famous Mille Miglia endurance race – which features more than 400 classic cars competing on a thousand-mile course between Brescia and Rome. Referred to by Enzo Ferrari as the “world’s most beautiful race”, it inspired an eponymous watch collection created by Chopard, which as of last year are now equipped with manufacture movements. Following the launch of the Mille Miglia GTS collection in 2015, at Baselworld 2016 Chopard debuted the Mille Miglia GTS Automatic Speed Black. Presented in a 43 mm x 11.43 mm matte black DLC-treated steel case, the watch features bold red “Rossa Corsa” accents and oversized numerals recalling 1950’s dashboards. Additionally, it has engine-style finishing and a strap with a vintage 1960s Dunlop racing tire tread motif. The dial is matte black, with a red lacquered sweep

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