close search

REVIEWS

Brett Kastin

REVIEW: Seiko Prospex Automatic SRP637 "Baby Tuna"

Brett Kastin

The Seiko Prospex SRP637, commonly referred to as a “Baby Tuna,” was added to the line-up of Seiko’s Prospex series in 2015. One of the Baby Tuna’s most recognizable features is its 60-minute uni-directional rotating dive bezel with a stainless steel shroud. The stainless steel case and shroud measure 47.5 mm wide x 13.5 mm thick x 50 mm in length, with a weight of 202.5 grams (including the bracelet) but wears considerably smaller than the numbers might indicate. The locking crown (7 mm in diameter) is located at the 4 o ‘clock position, eliminating interference with the wrist. The Baby Tuna comes with a 22 mm/20 mm stainless steel bracelet which uses a pin and collar system for sizing and has micro adjustments on the clasp. There is also a folding expansion for the clasp in order to add

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Maurice Lacroix Masterpiece Retrograde Moon

Jason Pitsch

Overview Founded in 1975, the relatively young Swiss watchmaker, Maurice Lacroix, is headquartered in Biel/Bienne and has a watch manufacture in Saignelégier. However, the company we know today originally started with Desco von Schulthess, which began as a Zurich-based silk trading company, that after many years of exporting got involved in watch distribution, in 1946. They eventually did so well in the watch business that they acquired the Saignelégier-based watch assembler, Tiara, in 1961. The success continued to the point that Desco decided to create the brand Maurice Lacroix, in 1975. Maurice Lacroix went on to acquire case maker Queloz S.A. in 1989, also based in Saignelégier. And today, Maurice Lacroix produces many of their own movements, thanks to the combination of vertically integrated manufacturing elements that were purchased over the years by Desco von Schulthess. The dial Beginning with

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Carl F. Bucherer Manero Peripheral

Jason Pitsch

Overview Originally founded by Carl Friedrich Bucherer in 1888, in Lucern, Switzerland, Bucherer started out as a watch retailer and jewelry store, selling a selection of the best brand name timepieces. In addition to their prominent chain of European retail stores, in 2001, the Bucherer Group created the luxury watch company Carl F. Bucherer, named after the company’s founder. In 2007, Carl F. Bucherer acquired Téchniques Horlogères Appliquées, giving them the ability to manufacture movements in-house, starting with the original CFB A1000 caliber, that debuted at Baselworld 2009. The A1000 caliber represented the first reliably functioning peripherally mounted rotor wound movement, which is even more impressive considering a few well-known watch companies tried to produce a reliable peripheral rotor watch movement but were unsuccessful. Introduction With the launch of the of the new caliber CFB A2000 – which powers the

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: TAG Heuer Carrera Mikrograph 100th Anniversary Special Edition

Jason Pitsch

The first watch capable of measuring 1/100th of a second Invented by Charles-Auguste Heuer in 1916, the Mikrograph stopwatch (not designed to tell the time) was the first watch to measure elapsed time with 1/100th of a second precision, thanks to a chronograph mechanism that beats at 360,000 vibrations per hour (50Hz). Almost 90 years later, the modern version of the legendary Mikrograph was resurrected by TAG Heuer, based on the same idea of using a 360,000 vph chronograph mechanism, but this time combined with the ability to indicate the time as well. This represented the first of the 1/100th of second chronographs to use the dual balance movement design which separates the timekeeping regulation (28,8000 vph - 4Hz), power, and transmission – from the chronograph regulation (360,000 vph - 50Hz), mainspring, and transmission. And in 2005, when the Carrera

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Chopard Mille Miglia 2016 XL Race Edition Chronograph

Jason Pitsch

Overview Chopard has a long history of associating with automobiles and racing, dating back to 1988, which is when the company became the official timekeeper of the Mille Miglia race in Italy. The ties with the automotive world began before 1988, though, as the owners of Chopard, Karl-Friedrich, and Karl Scheufele – who own collectible vintage and classic cars – were already participating in the Mille Miglia in the 1980s. Interestingly, according to Ralph Simons, the CEO of Chopard USA, the initial intention was not to create a commercially successful timepiece collection – it was instead developed with the idea of making a watch for the Mille Miglia participants. It did become of commercial success, of course, and Chopard has been the official timekeeper of the Mille Miglia ever since. The strong automobile and racing association continues to this day.

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Seiko Prospex SRP775 Diver

Jason Pitsch

Seiko is not only the oldest Japanese watch manufacture – with horological expertise dating to 1892 – they also have an incredibly strong diving heritage. In 1965, Seiko released their first dive watch, the 150 meter water-resistant reference 62MAS-010. Many dive watch models followed over the years. And not much has changed in that regard, as Seiko continues to make numerous dive watch models across a broad range of price points. For this article, we will focus on the modern SRP775 Prospex Diver, based on vintage reference 6309 that was produced from 1976-1988. Introduced at Baselworld 2015, the Prospex SRP775 Diver, nicknamed the “Turtle,” shares the original 6309’s cushion-shaped case design and has approximately the same dimensions. In fact, the hands, bezel, crown – and even the embossed logo on the back – are virtually the same. There are, of

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Alpina Alpiner 4 Chronoflyback

Jason Pitsch

Overview After three years of development, last year, Alpina unveiled an in-house chronograph based on their base caliber AL-710. A serious feat for any watch manufacture. Parmigiani Fleurier, for example, who has been in business for roughly two decades, just like the Frederique Constant group (which owns Alpina), introduced their first in-house chronograph this year. Notably, the Alpina chronograph has been added to an existing movement as a module, as opposed to being integrated directly caliber design from the start, however, it does have one proprietary feature that sets it apart from other chronographs: patented direct flyback technology. This allows for Alpina to produce a fairly complicated chronograph, for a relatively low price. The dial Legibility is the key to a good watch dial. I mean who says, “I want a watch with a busy dial that is difficult to

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Ralph Lauren Automotive Skeleton

Jason Pitsch

Overview Launched in 2015, and inspired by Ralph Lauren’s own 1938 Bugatti Type 57SC Atlantic Coupe, the Ralph Lauren Automotive Skeleton is the flagship of the collection and the company’s first open-worked timepiece. Automotive details extend throughout the timepiece, from the amboyna burl wood bezel to the black alligator strap that is reminiscent of the rich interior of Mr. Lauren’s Bugatti. Even the Arabic numerals emulate those found on the car’s iconic gauges. Dial Prominently located at 12 o’clock is a matte black galvanized subdial, with an azurage pattern with a luminescent RL logo, stamped on top. At six o’clock is a decentralized seconds subdial with white Arabic numerals and an azurage pattern. Hours and minutes are indicated by matte black oxidized sword-shaped hands, which are coated with a beige luminescent treatment for increased low-light visibility. Underneath the dial, the

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Bovet Flying Tourbillon Ottantasei designed by Pininfarina

Jason Pitsch

Overview Dating back to 2010, with the launch of the Ottan Tourbillon, Bovet has partnered with famous Italian car design firm, Pininfarina S.p.A., to create a collection of timepieces called “Bovet by Pininfarina.” The most recent timepiece to be added to this prestigious line of watches is the Flying Tourbillon Ottantasei. Boasting a flying tourbillon, and sapphire crystals on the front, rear, and left and right case flanks, light pours in from all angles when viewing the timepiece. This, is, of course, exemplified by the completely skeletonized, three dimensional, hand decorated Swiss manufacture movement. The dial The dials of the Ottantasei, which are placed symmetrically at 10 and 2 o’clock, indicate the power reserve and hours/minutes, respectively. The chapter rings are thin, with a white lacquer surface, and stamped with blue numerals and graduations. The hands have been blued and

Read More »

Jason Pitsch

REVIEW: Grand Seiko GMT

Jason Pitsch

Overview Dating back to 1881, Seiko is Japan’s oldest watchmaker. Grand Seiko, which was founded in 1960, is the company’s high-end watch line. There is even a higher line called Credor, but those pieces are significantly pricier and very rare. Grand Seiko is amongst a very elite group of mechanical watch manufactures (including Rolex) that can produce an entire mechanical timepiece – meaning the case, hands, dial, movement, fully in-house – from start to finish. And like the aforementioned brand, Grand Seiko is able to use their absolute control over production, as well as their watchmaking know-how, which dates back to the late 19th century, to produce superb timepieces. Every detail of a Grand Seiko exudes high-quality craftsmanship. The dial The dial of this Grand Seiko GMT (Ref. SBGM023) is silvered, but in certain light, it looks almost cream colored.

Read More »