jean arevalo

jean arevalo

First Published: July 21, 2021
  1. Articles by jean arevalo
  2. Timex Q Reissue: The Return of the Splendid 1970s GMT Watch

    Timex Q Reissue: The Return of the Splendid 1970s GMT Watch

    Timex is one of those brands that has been in the horology industry for as long as we remember. This American brand has always catered to the needs of both men and women looking for durable, stylish timepieces at accessible prices. Timex was also behind the existence of the legendary Timex Q watch, which was released in the 1970s as a popular and more budget-friendly alternative to the iconic Rolex GMT-Master II.  Given the Timex Q’s success, it is no surprise that the brand chose to bring it back today in the form of the Timex Q Reissue. Bearing classic aesthetics inspired by its predecessors, the Timex Q Reissue continues to be a sleek, affordable option for watch enthusiasts who enjoy vintage looks. But is it worth the hype? Let us take a closer look at everything the Timex Q Reissue has to offer to find out. First Impressions Even at first glance, the Timex Q Reissue has a quintessential vibe that instantly reminds you of the 70s. This timepiece has a neo-vintage aesthetic, with its angular, beveled case and stainless steel bracelet. Like its 1970s predecessor, it also comes with a dark red and blue Pepsi GMT bezel, an innovation first developed by the trailblazing Swiss watchmaker Rolex. The watch’s muted blue dial also contrasts well against the beige hour markers, enhancing the watch’s retro yet classy look. Anatomy of the Timex Q Reissue Case and Bezel The case of the Timex Q Reissue is both elegant and extremely satisfying to look at, with its cleanly brushed surfaces. Made of stainless steel, this case measures 38mm in diameter and 11.5mm in height, making this quite a slender watch that is very easy to tote around all day. In addition, its sharply beveled edges give the impression of the Timex Q Reissue being even smaller than it really is. As a result, this watch is great for those with small-to-average size wrists and those who simply love wearing slimmer watches. Like the original Timex Q, this watch has solid hooded lugs, which is quite uncommon in modern watches, further emphasizing this watch’s vintage style. The Timex Q Reissue also inherits the original’s beautiful red-and-blue Pepsi GMT dial, an iconic watch design that makes it even more appealing. This stainless steel bezel is highly scratch-resistant and can be smoothly rotated in both directions. It also comes with silver Arabic numeral indicators that allow you to keep track of a second time zone and blunted teeth-edges so wearers can grip and turn it more easily. Fixed on top of the bezel is a domed acrylic crystal that serves to protect the Timex Q Reissue’s dial. Dial The beguiling dial of the Timex Q Reissue shows off a muted navy blue hue, which pairs perfectly with its Pepsi bezel. This dial incorporates a classic, retro-inspired layout, making it a real favorite with vintage watch fans. It has large geometric hour indices and silver-outlined lollipop hands, along with a sizable day-date window located at 3 o’clock. The hour indices and hands are all coated in beige-white luminous material, giving them a bright green glow in the dark that satisfyingly contrasts its navy blue backdrop. The brand also added a faux patina to the watch to add a bit of nostalgia to the whole piece. On the whole, Timex did a great job re-capturing the same 70s vibe of the original timepiece. Movement One thing that might be a little lackluster about the Timex Q Reissue is the movement that powers it. Just like its predecessor, the Timex Q Reissue is equipped with a quartz movement, the Seiko SII Epson PC33. It is a little disappointing that Timex did not see fit to upgrade the movement with the Timex Q’s modern release and this Seiko caliber definitely shows its age. This is a relatively cheap and basic movement, so you have to manually set the day function by moving the hands past midnight instead of having the watch automatically set the date for you. This can be quite a downside for fans who prefer watches that offer greater convenience. Caseback On the underside of the Timex Q Reissue, you can find a caseback that is also remarkably similar to its 1970s version. This screwed-in stainless steel caseback has a brushed finish and provides a water resistance capacity of around 50 meters. It has a very minimalistic, simple look, with just the brand name, reference code, and other such information stamped on the back and no flowery designs or engravings that you might find on other watches. The small opening on the upper left side of the caseback allows you to change the battery of the Timex Q Reissue on your own. All you have to do is stick a coin into the slot, turn it until it opens and you will be able to change the watch’s battery. Bracelet/Strap The Timex Q Reissue comes with a bracelet also made from stainless steel. It adds to the watch’s quintessential look, perfectly complementing its overall design, and feels extremely comfortable on the wrist as well. This strap also has a buckle that keeps the watch firmly secured on your wrist. Price Aside from its heritage and classic design, the most exciting part of this Timex Q Reissue is its affordable price. Retailing at just $179 USD, the Timex Q Reissue is quite a value-for-money option. It should be noted that the Timex Q Reissue was hugely popular and sold out quite rapidly. This has led to its price being marked up slightly on the second-hand market, although this problem has been marginally alleviated by the release of new 2020 models of the Timex Q Reissue. Today, you can probably get the Timex Q Reissue second-hand for under $250 USD. Ultimately, if you are looking for the best, most accessible vintage-inspired timepiece, this is one you should definitely check out. Brief History of Timex Q Watch During the quartz crisis in the 1970s, watch industries all over the world were impacted. Numerous American watchmakers were driven into bankruptcy and were compelled to sell off their brands to various foreign corporations. At that time, only Timex and Bulova continued to operate in America. However, in order to survive the financial difficulties caused by the quartz crisis, these two brands decided to venture out by entering the quartz watch industry themselves. It was this saga that led to Timex launching the very first version of the Timex Q in 1979. The Timex Q was a very popular and in-demand model, right from the outset. Timex utilized elements that were trendy in the 1970s in the making of this watch, leading to the Timex Q being recognized by many watch enthusiasts worldwide. Some of these elements included the angular-shaped case, the stylish Pepsi bezel, and the mesh bracelet. As a quartz watch, the Timex Q was far more affordable and accessible than most of its mechanical watch peers. Thanks to its highly recognizable Pepsi bezel, the Timex Q became the go-to alternative for those who wanted but could not afford the Rolex GMT-Master. This association with Rolex’s GMT-Master raised the Timex Q’s profile even further, making this watch a cornerstone in Timex’s history. 2020 Timex Q Reissue Models Photo from Professional WatchesAs previously mentioned, the Timex Q Reissue was a huge hit upon its release and was quickly sold out. In 2020, to accommodate continued demand, Timex launched three new color variations of the sought-after Timex Q Reissue. These three variants share nearly identical specifications as the original Pepsi version of the Timex Q Reissue, including 38mm cases, robust quartz movements, and teeth-edged rotating GMT bezels with bi-color designs. The only difference between the Pepsi Timex Q Reissue and these 2020 models is that their dials and bezels come in different colorways. The 2020 Timex Q Reissue variations include the Ref. TW2U60900ZV (black dial with a black and green bezel), the Ref. TW2U61100ZV (navy blue dial with an orange and navy blue bezel), and the Ref. TW2U61200 (white dial with a red and navy blue bezel). The price of these versions remains the same, costing around $179 USD each. Alternatives to the Timex Q Reissue The Timex Q Reissue is an excellent and very affordable vintage watch with a truly classic design. That said, despite its great qualities and features, not all are that fond of wearing a retro-inspired quartz watch. Whether it is because you prefer mechanical pieces or you want something that looks a little more contemporary, fear not. We have collated a list of some of the best alternatives to the Timex Q Reissue that you should consider checking out. 1. Rolex GMT Master II Ref. 1670 Blue Red Photo from Watchshopping.com Ever since it was first launched, both the original and modern editions of the Timex Q have been closely linked to the Rolex GMT-Master due to their rather similar appearances. As such, the first option on our list of best Timex Q Reissue alternatives has to be the Rolex GMT-Master II Ref. 16710, which is perfect for those seeking a fancier, more prestigious GMT watch. This Rolex GMT-Master II piece is a classic luxury icon. It comes in a 40mm case and bracelet crafted from the brand’s proprietary Oystersteel material, which is exceptionally resistant to scratches and corrosion. The lustrous silver case and bracelet cast a satisfying contrast against the watch’s jet-black dial, which is adorned with geometric hour markers, Mercedes hands, and a magnified date window at 3 o’clock. The dial is protected by a layer of luxurious sapphire crystal, which is the hardest watch crystal available. This Rolex watch also features a two-toned Pepsi bezel made out of highly scratch-resistant Cerachrom. Unlike the Timex Q Reissue, the Rolex GMT-Master II Ref. 16710 is powered by an in-house automatic Caliber 3185. This exquisite, hand-crafted movement has a substantial 50-hour power reserve and comes with a water resistance rating of around 100 meters. You can purchase this Rolex Pepsi watch for around $24,899 USD. 2. Seiko Prospex Ref. SRPB09K1 Photo from Watchshopping.com Next up, we have the Seiko Prospex Ref. SRPB09K1, commonly known as part of the brand’s Seiko Samurai range. Named as such for its luminous sword-shaped minute hand, this watch stands out with its Pepsi bezel and its textured black dial that bears a subtle pattern of waves. This is quite a big watch, with a 43.8mm stainless steel case paired with a matching three-link steel bracelet. Like other Seiko Prospex watches, it is also equipped with a scratch-resistant Hardlex crystal, adding an extra layer of protection to the watch face. Aside from the “samurai” minute hand, the dial of this Seiko watch is also decorated with thick luminous hour indices, an arrow-shaped hour hand, a thin red seconds hand, and a compact date window at 3 o’clock. This watch is driven by the brand’s automatic 4R35 Caliber which offers a solid 41-hour power reserve. In addition, it has an impressive depth rating of 200 meters, so this watch can easily act as a companion on all your fun water activities, such as diving or water skiing. The Seiko Prospex Ref. SRPB09K1 is priced at approximately $509 USD, which is quite a worthy bargain considering its exceptional features. 3. Bulova Classic Ref. 98B348 Photo from Watchshopping.com Last but not least, we have the Bulova Classic Ref. 98B348, which is another quartz watch packed with excellent features. It boasts a large 44mm stainless steel case, which is complemented by a stylish grey sector dial and a black silicone strap. This Bulova Classic watch also has a two-tone bezel. However, unlike the Timex Q Reissue and the Rolex GMT-Master, the Bulova Classic Ref. 98B348 is actually classified as a dive watch. As such, its sophisticated red and grey bezel is actually marked with an elapsed time scale in white indicators instead. The watch face is also protected by a layer of mineral crystal. The dial of this Bulova watch is also very straightforward, adorned with luminous arrow hands, hour indices, and a small date window at 3 o’clock. As mentioned, the Bulova Classic Ref. 98B348 is a quartz watch, so it runs on a powerful quartz movement that offers a 100-meter water resistance capacity. With a price tag of just $249 USD, this Bulova timepiece is closest in price to the Timex Q Reissue while also bearing a more contemporary style. It is the best alternative to the Timex Q Reissue for modern audiences. Final Thoughts The Timex Q Reissue watch is an exquisite retro-inspired model that definitely deserves to be on your radar. With excellent features, a memorable design, and an affordable price tag, the only downside to the Timex Q Reissue is really its movement, which could really use a more advanced upgrade. That said, if you are seeking an accessible 70s-inspired timepiece and do not mind the subpar movement, then the Timex Q Reissue is the perfect, nostalgia-inducing choice. Photos credit to Timex’s official website unless otherwise stated. Featured image courtesy to u/Kevin-Benjamin on Reddit. Curious what makes Grand Seiko distinctive from the Seiko watches? Check out our article about The Differences Between Seiko and Grand Seiko Watches.

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  3. Casio Rangeman: A Review of the Brand’s Toughest Watch

    Casio Rangeman: A Review of the Brand’s Toughest Watch

    Casio is widely regarded as being home to some of the toughest watches in the world. While this Japanese brand has numerous refined collections that have greatly contributed to horology, it only truly made a name for itself with its legendary Casio G-Shock collection. This is a line of exceptionally rugged tactical timepieces designed to survive any sort of harsh conditions. One particular high-caliber watch in this collection is the Casio Rangeman GW-9400. Equipped with G-Shock’s famous triple sensor technology and a robust build that is virtually unmatched in the watchmaking world, the Casio Rangeman has become the perfect companion to professionals and adventurers working in extreme conditions. In this article, we will be taking an in-depth look at the Casio Rangeman GW-9400, including its specifications, price, and just what makes it so popular. Brief History of Casio G-Shock Rangeman  In 2013, Casio launched a new series of modern G-Shock watches. Known as the Master of G line-up, these new additions to the G-Shock collection were notable as they came with Casio’s newest, state-of-the-art triple sensor technology. Among these watches was, of course, the Casio Rangeman GW-9400. Today, the Casio Rangeman has become the most coveted model out of the many G-Shock watches in existence. It is the number one pick amongst outdoorsmen and sportsmen of all categories. With its superb features, rugged, combat-ready profile, and accessible price, the Casio Rangeman’s popularity is truly no surprise. Anatomy of the Casio GW-9400 Rangeman Case and Bezel Photo from Watchshopping.com All of the Casio Rangeman GW-9400 watches are built using solid resin cases. The Casio Rangeman’s case is incredibly thick, which provides greater protection against shocks and impacts. They also tend to be large, measuring around 53mm to 55mm in diameter. However, despite their robust sizes, the use of resin means that the Casio Rangeman is actually very light, weighing around 93g, so you can still wear the watch comfortably for extended periods of time. The Rangeman’s thick case is also constructed to have a more three-dimensional profile, with the dial being submerged and surrounded by layers of resin so that the screen of the dial is always protected. As a digital watch, the Casio Rangeman comes packed with an array of useful functions. As a result, the case is also crowded with pushers and buttons that allow you to control these features. For instance, a larger, protruding pusher located at the 3 o’clock position allows you to access the triple sensors’ different modes. Other pushbuttons can be used for the watch’s chronograph functions, to change between different time zones, and so on. You also don’t need to fear being confused by all these buttons and features. The pushers on the Casio Rangeman are all carefully labeled in clean grey and white typefaces, allowing you to get the hang of this watch very quickly. Dial As previously mentioned, the Casio Rangeman has a digital dial that is filled with useful features. It consists of a layer of scratch-resistant mineral glass, with a gray backdrop text in a highly legible, typical black font. Casio opted for a digital dial instead of an analog one because they wanted to optimize this watch in terms of readability and ease of use, so as to better serve the adventurers and hikers that were the main target audience of the Casio Rangeman. With a segmented digital dial, wearers could take one quick glance at the watch face and immediately see all the information they needed. In order to accommodate all of the functions the Casio Rangeman has, the dial is split into four different screens. When in the default modes, the screens each display the time, day of the week, the month and day, and a chronograph display. By pressing the different pushers on the side of the case, you can change the modes of the watch to bring up different types of information such as the compass, the barometric pressure readings, and so on. Movement The Casio Rangeman’s impressive functions are all driven by a high-performing quartz movement. As a quartz caliber, it offers a superlative accuracy rate of ±1 second per day, or ±15 seconds per month. It is also equipped with an incredible 8-month long battery. If necessary, you can also turn on the watch’s power save function, which allows the Casio Rangeman to last up to 23 months when fully charged. Furthermore, this is a solar movement, so you can charge it with solar power, simply by exposing it to light. Bracelet Photo from Watchshopping.com The Casio Rangeman GW-9400 also comes with an integrated resin band, which completes the watch’s sporty and rugged aesthetic. This strap is ergonomic and feels comfortable against your wrist even after hours of use. A stainless steel buckle keeps the strap securely wrapped around your wrist. Resistance The Casio Rangeman GW-9400 is not called one of the toughest watches in the world for nothing. With its sturdy resin case, Casio designed this watch to have water, mud, and shock-resistant properties. It can withstand low temperatures of up to -10°C or 14°F and is water-resistant up to depths of 200 meters. Whether you are diving, swimming, hiking, or doing any other outdoor adventure, this timepiece is the best partner you could have, since it can take a beating and still remain functional no matter what you put it through. That said, make sure to give your Casio Rangeman a good rinse afterward so it always looks clean and pristine. Functions First off, the Casio GW-9400 Rangeman is one of the first timepieces to ever feature the brand’s triple sensor technology, which means that it is equipped with a barometer, altimeter, and compass functions. These are essential to those who are out and about in their adventures. Aside from this, the watch also contains sunrise and sunset data, a thermometer, and Casio’s MultiBand 6 technology, which allows the watch to keep precise time by staying calibrated to surrounding radio waves. This watch also comes with features that are incredibly useful in everyday life. These include a chronograph stopwatch that can measure up to 1000 hours, 31 different time zones, a countdown timer, 5 daily alarms, a full auto-calendar, and much more. With everything that it can do, the Casio Rangeman is a watch that is truly meant to serve you and make your life easier. Best Casio Rangeman GW-9400 Models Now that we have established the Casio Rangeman’s impressive specifications and everything it can do, let us take a look at some of the best GW-9400 models available right now:  1. Casio Rangeman GW-9400J-1JF Photo from Watchshopping.com The Casio Rangeman GW-9400J-1JF is an instantly recognizable G-Shock model with its rugged, mostly grey build, which is complemented by some vibrant red accents. This is one of the most sought-after models of the Casio Rangeman for the power and practicality it boasts. The Casio Rangeman GW-9400J-1JF comes in a 53mm case and strap, primarily crafted from resin, rubber, and silicone. These are materials renowned for being highly flexible, hypoallergenic, and having excellent water-resistant capacities. Its digital screen displays the hour, minutes, seconds, date, and day of the week and is filled with grey hues of varying shades. This is complemented by bright red accents dotted around the watch, in the form of red texts and a red stripe around the stainless steel pusher, which serve to brighten up this Casio Rangeman and enhance its sporty look. The Casio Rangeman GW-9400J-1JF is equipped with an in-house quartz Caliber 3410. This powerful movement ensures top-notch accuracy, with a precision rate of ±15 seconds per month. It also offers Multiband Atomic Timekeeping and a 200-meter water resistance capacity, making it an ideal piece for your next water adventure. This Casio Rangeman retails at around $449 USD, which is a very budget-friendly price for such a tough watch. 2. Casio Rangeman GW-9400DCJ-1JF The next watch on this list is of the best Casio Rangeman models is the GW-9400DCJ-1JF, also known as the Rangeman Desert Camouflage. This is another powerfully-built Casio Rangeman with a design that is based on the camouflage uniforms of military units assigned to work in the desert. As the newest member of the Master of G sub-collection, this Casio Rangeman piece was crafted with desert adventurers and military soldiers in mind. The Casio Rangeman GW-9400DCJ-1JF comes with the standard black resin case with some carbon fiber inserts to better reinforce the case’s sturdiness and resistance to shocks and impacts. Its strap is different from other Rangeman models, coming in a light brown camouflage pattern that blends into its desert surroundings. This Rangeman piece has a stunning digital dial with sharp black text and a lighter-colored background than the Rangeman GW-9400J-1JF. This dial is protected by a flat layer of scratch-resistant mineral crystal. In addition, you can find gold and beige-toned markings all over the thick resin bezel, complementing the softer hues of the dial and the resin strap. The Rangeman Desert Camo GW-9400DCJ-1JF comes at a slightly more expensive price tag of $770 USD. 3. Casio G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400-3DR Last but certainly not least, we have the all-green Casio G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400-3DR. This watch bears the standard Rangeman build but stands out with its unique, forest-themed colorway. It is a tough-looking watch equipped with innovative features that correspond to its price. The Casio Rangeman GW-9400-3DR features a case and strap both made out of dark green-coated plastic resin, paired with a mineral crystal that provides the digital dial with greater protection. This watch is slightly larger than the aforementioned models, coming in at around 55.2mm in diameter. It is a rugged, sturdy timepiece that can withstand shocks, mud, low temperatures, scratches, and even has a water resistance rating of 200m. As with other versions of the Rangeman, the GW-9400-3DR is equipped with a solar-powered quartz movement and the brand’s famous triple sensor technology. You can purchase this watch for approximately $300 USD, making this the most affordable Rangeman piece in this guide. Final Thoughts  While there are other durable and rugged watches out there, there is still no timepiece that can be as tough and reliable as the Casio Rangeman. Equipped with the G-Shock’s impressive technological innovations and signature robust build, this is the best survival watch to use in any and every adventure. Furthermore, with its very accessible price range, virtually anyone can own a Rangeman of their own.   Featured image from Casio Official Website. All images courtesy to Casio’s Official Website unless stated. Want to know more about other toughest watches from the Casio collections you should never miss paying attention to? Check our guide about the Best Casio Dive Watches.

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  4. Tudor North Flag: A Guide to Classic Yet Underrated Chronograph

    Tudor North Flag: A Guide to Classic Yet Underrated Chronograph

    Although Tudor first became known as the sister company of the more prestigious watch brand Rolex, the company allowed this to be a reason not to establish its own reputable name in the watch industry. In fact, over the years, Tudor has developed into one of the most highly-coveted Swiss watchmakers with its luxurious and refined timepieces that are available at very reasonable prices. It offers a range of top-notch watches that cater to the needs of both men and women who wish to own a high-caliber timekeeper. Aside from that, Tudor is also known for many innovations in the world of horology, such as the creation of its own first-ever caliber movement, the Caliber MT5621, which you can find in the Tudor North Flag. This particular collection features many classic and cutting-edge timepieces, with the Caliber MT5621 providing exceptionally precise timekeeping as well. That said, the Tudor North Flag has been a remarkably underrated line of watches. In this article, we’ll take a look at the Tudor North Flag in detail and break down just why it deserves more attention from watch enthusiasts. Tudor’s First in-House Calibre Photo by Manuel Rebic from Flickr The Tudor North Flag, as mentioned, stood out because it featured the brand’s first-ever powerful in-house Caliber MT5621. As earlier versions of Tudor watches were equipped with caliber movements from external suppliers, the creation of its first in-house movement was a massive milestone for the brand. In fact, this was the major shift that allowed the brand to establish its own identity in the watch community and no longer be referred to as just a sister brand of Rolex. While it is true that the Tudor Pelagos was the first watch to be powered by the Caliber MT5621, it was the Tudor North Flag that proudly showcased its excellent functions and mechanisms with the North Flag’s see-through caseback. This feature is not one often found in Rolex watches, making the Tudor North Flag all the more distinctive. In fact, the Tudor North Flag serves as a testament to how Tudor expertly carves out its niche, setting itself apart from Rolex. The Inspiration Behind Tudor North Flag’s Existence Named after the British North Greenland Expedition, the Tudor North Flag actually takes inspiration from the 1952 expedition’s Oyster Prince time-telling accessory, as well as the exceptional 1970’s Tudor Ranger II. The Oyster Prince was historically crafted to be used by the crew of the British North Greenland Expedition back in 1952, which means that it was designed to be a reliable, robust, and highly accurate timepiece that could survive being exposed to all sorts of extreme environments. The Tudor North Flag took from the Oyster Prince a similar identity of being a tough, rigid, and highly precise timekeeper intended for the hardiest of survivalists. With regards to the overall design of the Tudor North Flag, on the other hand, a quick glance makes it immediately apparent that it has a resemblance to Tudor’s own Ranger II, an iconic timepiece from way back in the 1970s. Like the Ranger II, the Tudor North Flag features a similar arrow-shaped handset filled with lume and a heavy-based chapter ring. One difference between the two watches, however, is that the Tudor North Flag does not adopt the Ranger II’s oversized fluted bezel, opting instead for a smoother and more refined bezel. All in all, the Tudor North Flag is a fresh, modern take on the Ranger II. Up Close with Tudor North Flag Case Material: Stainless steel Dial: Black Case diameter: 40mm Movement: Calibre MT5621 Power reserve: 70 hours Water resistance: 100m Case and Bezel Right from the outset, the most striking feature you’re likely to notice from the unique Tudor North Flag is its sophisticated case. Crafted as a luxury sports watch, the stainless steel case of this timepiece has a slim build and clean lines with its sharp, angular edges. In addition, it features a high-tech steel bezel that is unusually lined with black ceramic on the outer rim and a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal that serves as protection for the dial. With its proportionate 40mm case diameter, previous owners have reported that the Tudor North Flag is extremely comfortable on the wrist, with a size that is just right. Its incorporated lugs and tapered crown are fine details that add to the lightweight profile of the watch. Along with its substantial 100m water resistance, this timepiece displays a contemporary appearance that is a modern twist on the vintage Tudor Ranger II. Dial The dial of the Tudor North Flag is yet another highlight of this handsome timepiece, as it boasts an avant-garde and minimalistic style. Along with its rectangular hour markers, the watch also displays two oversized Arabic numerals at 6 and 12 o’clock that dominate the black dial. The numerals and hour markers are all wrapped in white lume to provide excellent visibility even in poor lighting conditions. You will also notice the small rectangular date aperture located at the 3 o’clock position and a bright yellow power reserve indicator located at 9 o’clock that serves as a splash of color to the dial. This power reserve also works as a rotating disc, adding a touch of contemporaneity to this timepiece. Another elegant feature of the Tudor North Flag is its luminous silver-toned hour and minute hands, and vibrant yellow seconds hand with a rectangular tip. The white and yellow handset smartly contrasts against the black dial, which adds to the legibility of this timepiece. We can also find the Tudor name and logo printed on the dial, right under the 12 o’clock marker. Lume Tudor ensures that the hour markers and hands of the North Flag are all either coated or filled with luminescent material. This gives it a gorgeous light blue glow in low-lighting conditions, making time-telling easy no matter where you are. This is one of the most essential features a timepiece must have and the brand’s use of a high-end lume for the Tudor North Flag highlights how Tudor spared no expense in crafting this watch. Movement While the gorgeous aesthetics of the Tudor North Flag are definitely an eye-catcher, the real show-stopper when it comes to this watch is its movement. The Caliber MT5621 movement is, as previously mentioned, Tudor’s first-ever in-house caliber movement. It was a significant turning point for Tudor, as this ability to craft a top-notch movement with excellent engineering and craftsmanship helped the brand to build its own reputation instead of just being identified as a sister company of Rolex. As the Tudor North Flag was the primary vehicle that Tudor used to introduce the Caliber MT5621, this gives the watch a special status in the Tudor catalog and history indeed. Going back to Caliber MT5621 movement, it is a top-notch automatic movement that features a 4Hz beat rate, a bidirectional winding system equipped with an anti-magnetic silicon hairspring, and an adjustable inertia oscillator. It is a COSC-certified chronometer with a record of accuracy rating of not more than -2/+4 seconds, and as such is a highly reliable, accurate, and functional movement that you can rely on for years to come. It also features a whopping power reserve of up to 70 hours. This is a particular standout compared to other high-end sports watches, which tend to only offer up to 40 hours of power reserve. Moreover, this in-house movement is also surprisingly durable. Not only is it able to withstands shocks and external vibrations, but it is also anti-magnetic and has superior dimensional stability. It features a free-spring balance wheel, a design that is characteristic of high-end Swiss-made movements like those from prominent watchmakers Patek Philippe and Rolex. The mechanisms of the Caliber MT5621 can be observed through the see-through case back of the Tudor North Flag, allowing wearers to appreciate the grand and efficient design of this movement. Bracelet/Strap Tudor offers two different options for the strap of the North Flag. You can choose between a brushed, professional stainless steel strap or a yellow-stitched, black leather strap. The former is crafted with a solid satin finish, which blends perfectly with the matching stainless steel case. The yellow and black leather strap, on the other hand, pairs well with the neon accents visible on the Tudor North Flag’s sporty dial. Regardless of which one you opt to use, both straps are crafted by Tudor to be durable and easy to wear. Both of them feature safety catches and folding clasps that allow the straps to fit nicely and securely around wrists of any size. Pros and Cons of Tudor North Flag Despite all of the impressive attributes of the Tudor North Flag, it is not quite the perfect timepiece. That is why, before making a decision on the Tudor North Flag, you want to make sure to consider all the good and the bad first. We’ve come up with a list of pros and cons so you really know what you’re getting with the Tudor North Flag. Pros Excellent build and quality finish.  Each component of the Tudor North Flag watch is skillfully crafted by the brand to ensure its durability, reliability, and functionality. Furthermore, knowing that Tudor is one of the most reputable Swiss watchmakers, you can rest assured that it only uses premium materials to create its timepieces, and the Tudor North Flag is no exception.Equipped with Tudor’s first in-house movement and COSC-certified chronometer. One of the most noteworthy features of the Tudor North Flag is that it is equipped with the brand’s first-ever in-house movement, the Caliber MT5621. This movement is shock-resistant and has anti-magnetic capabilities, making it a durable movement with a long shelf life. It is also commended for its highly precise timekeeping, showcasing the identity and reliability of a genuine Swiss-made movement.Known for its affordability. Another highlight of the North Flag watch is its budget-friendly pricing. Considering the robust features this watch offers, getting it at a price that will not break your bank is certainly considered a steal. Cons Limited strap options. If you’re the type of person who loves to switch up the straps of your timepiece for different occasions, then sadly, this Tudor North Flag might not be for you. Although it has incorporated lugs to provide greater comfort against the wearer’s wrists, there isn’t really a diversity of choice available in terms of strap options. As mentioned, these North Flag watches only come with two types of straps, formal stainless steel, or a sporty black and yellow leather version. An alternative solution is to buy a custom-made strap, which, unfortunately, can be quite expensive.Not as popular as other Tudor collections. Despite all the features the Tudor North Flag offers, it remains quite an underrated timepiece. If you’re planning to buy a watch to invest in for the future, buying this watch might be a risk for you, particularly when it comes to resale value, as it isn’t as heavily sought-after as some of its Tudor peers. Two Variants of Tudor North Flag  1. TUDOR North Flag 91210N-0002 One notable feature of this version is its stunning black dial, boasting a contemporary and classic sporty look. This Tudor North Flag 91210N-0002 features a 40mm stainless steel case, a sapphire crystal to add extra protection to its dial, a see-through skeleton caseback, and a smooth black leather strap with a fold-over safety clasp to complete the overall classy, sporty look. It is equipped with the brand’s first-ever in-house automatic movement, famous for its high accuracy and resistance to shocks and magnetism. Aside from that, this Tudor model also comes equipped with a water resistance rating of up to 100 meters. You’ll notice that the handy date aperture can also be found at the 3 o’clock position. This first version of the Tudor North Flag is available for only $3,939 USD. 2. TUDOR North Flag 91210N-0001 This second version of Tudor North Flag features all the same characteristics as the previous watch. It also has a 40mm round stainless steel case with integrated lugs, a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, and a see-through caseback that showcases the watch’s in-house Caliber MT5621 movement. It has an impressive power reserve of up to 70 hours and is equipped with 100 meters of water resistance. The only difference of this Tudor North Flag 91210N-0001 is its strap, which is made of stainless steel and offers more of a professional, classic feel with its clean geometry. This version is just a little pricier, retailing at $4,499 USD. Final Thoughts We can’t deny that we tend to opt for the most prestigious watchmakers like Rolex, Tag Heuer, or Omega when looking at Swiss luxury watch brands. Sometimes, we forget that it is not just the most prominent brands that are worthy of interest or capable of delivering high-quality timepieces. Indeed, Tudor, with its luxurious and reliable watches available at very reasonable prices, is definitely one to keep an eye on. In particular, the Tudor North Flag is a classic and functional timepiece that offers highly accurate timekeeping and a handsomely contemporary aesthetic. This timepiece was the vehicle through which Tudor introduced its first-ever in-house movement, which adds to the historical significance and depth of the Tudor North Flag as well, as part of this impressive Tudor milestone. At the end of the day, the Tudor North Flag is a durable, reliable, and functional time-telling accessory with an important history to boot. For these reasons, it is an excellent and underrated piece perfect for watch enthusiasts looking to expand their collections. Looking for other Tudor watches you would definitely want to add to your collection? Check our article on the Best Picks From Tudor Watches. All photos are credited to Watchshopping.com unless stated otherwise. Featured image from Manuel Rebic on Flickr.

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  5. Rolex Deepsea D-Blue: A Look at the Brand’s Top-Notch Dive Watch

    Rolex Deepsea D-Blue: A Look at the Brand’s Top-Notch Dive Watch

    Dive watches remain an iconic and timeless luxury item for men. While there are numerous options available in the horological market, we can’t deny that Rolex dive watch collections are the most sought-after pieces. This is particularly true of the famous Rolex Deepsea D-Blue, the acclaimed diving watch which provides a whopping 3,900 meters of water resistance. Although there is a wide variety of dive watches you can find in Rolex’s extensive catalog, such as its pioneer diving piece the Submariner, the Deepsea Blue simply stands out from the rest of its competitors. Given that Rolex always tries to go above and beyond when it comes to creating an exquisite time-telling accessory using its superb craftsmanship, innovation, and practical skills in horology, it is no surprise that the Rolex Sea-Dweller collection’s Deepsea Blue offers such impressive features. Aside from its top-notch water resistance, it is also equipped with a high-performance in-house Caliber 3235. This is a new generation movement produced by Rolex. It ensures that this diving timepiece offers the highest precision possible even when exposed to the harshest conditions underwater. What’s more, the Deepsea Blue features an elegant and luxurious face, so this wonderful timepiece could easily double as an everyday watch too. If you’re looking for a durable and classy dive watch to be used on your next exploration into the abyssal world, the Rolex Deepsea Blue will more than exceed your expectations.  A Quick Look at the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Watch In the horology industry, Rolex will always be the luxury watch manufacturer to beat. This Swiss brand has always been at the forefront of creating top-notch timepieces that showcase distinctive and memorable characteristics. The Rolex Sea-Dweller was introduced back in 1967 and since its first release, it has always been considered a true tool watch and diving accessory. As an early predecessor of the Submariner collection, the original Sea-Dweller was designed with certain basic functionalities. It aimed to not fail at meeting the needs of any avid diver when they head off to conquer the underwater world. Over the years, the different Sea-Dweller timepieces that have been released have featured varying underwater diving depth potentials, ranging from 610 meters to as deep as 3,900 meters. Earlier versions of the Rolex Sea-Dweller were also not equipped with a helium escape valve. The helium escape valve was only added when the latest Rolex Sea-Dweller model Ref. 126600 was launched back in 2017. Today, the Sea-Dweller collection is easily distinguishable from the rest of the Rolex lineup, as it does not feature a date magnifier, which is visible in most Rolex other models. One major milestone for the Sea-Dweller collection was when it introduced its first Rolex Deepsea model in 2008, featuring a “Ringlock system.” This system is now commonly used by skilled watchmakers when they sealing sapphire crystals to cases, as it ensures a more tighter fit so the crystal doesn’t simply come loose and leave the dial exposed. Another notable feature the Sea-Dweller added was its “Glidelock clasp” and diver extension link, which allow the watch’s bracelet to be more securely fastened around the diver’s wrist so it won’t fall off, even when the diver is dressed in diving gear. These advancements in the Sea-Dweller’s designs over the years are a testament to how Rolex has consistently sought to upgrade this early dive watch, creating a collection that you can always rely on for excellent and improving quality. Back in 2012, famous film director James Cameron navigated the abyssal world at a depth of around 11,000 meters using a submersible vessel. This submersible was called the Deepsea Challenger, and it carried Cameron and his crew to the bottom of the Pacific Ocean as part of a project to produce a movie named Deepsea Challenge 3D. As part of this project, Rolex created and designed a particular prototype version of the Rolex Deepsea timepiece. This timepiece eventually came to be known as the Oyster Perpetual Date Sea-Dweller DEEPSEA CHALLENGE. This diver watch features water resistance up to a stunning 12,000 meters, making this the perfect watch to use when exploring what’s beneath the Pacific Ocean. To celebrate and honor the project’s success and accomplishment, in 2014, Rolex released a new model of the Deepsea, which they called the Rolex Sea Dweller Deepsea D-Blue 116660. This model of the Deepsea Blue was quite similar to the original prototype in terms of technical functions, but differed in appearance. The 2014 Deepsea Blue featured a two-hued dial, fading from blue to black, a visual representation of the depths of the vast ocean. This visual tick is also the reason why this timepiece is the first in the Deepsea line to carry the ‘D-Blue’ moniker. In addition, the dial had the word ‘DEEPSEA’ printed in green, derived from the color of James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenger vessel. This watch is now famously known among watch collectors and aficionados as the Deepsea James Cameron, and reached popular heights never seen by the original Deepsea Blue in 2008. Yet another new version of the Sea Dweller Deepsea Blue was announced back in 2017, at Baselword, called the Sea-Dweller Deepsea Blue Ref. 126600. In 2018, this model of the Deepsea Blue was launched. This latest variant was introduced as an enlarged version of the Deepsea Blue 126600, featuring a date magnifier and equipped with a refreshed version of the caliber 3235. In short, all these different variants of the Rolex Deepsea Blue can be found in the brand’s extensive catalog. The first-ever version was referred to as the Deepsea 116660, featuring a grand yet straightforward black dial with white text on its dial. The second version, the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue, was officially introduced to the watch community back in 2014, and marked the growing popularity of the Deepsea lineup. And the newest version is the popular Rolex Deepsea Blue Ref. 126660, launched at Baselworld. Let’s take a closer look at what exactly the latest Deepsea Blue has to offer. Up Close with Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 126660 The original version of the Rolex Deepsea D-blue was released in August 2014. It was upgraded to the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 126660 in 2018, offering newer functions and features so that it could better serve as a diving watch accessory to be utilized for your next underwater adventure. It comes with excellent qualities that you’d be hard-pressed to find in other diving timepieces, which is a huge reason why this watch has really dominated the world of diving watches. The newest Deepsea D-Blue 126660 does offer many features that the original has, but with some tweaks and upgrades. One central change was made to the lug size, so that it now measures 21mm, smaller than the original 22mm lug size. It also comes with a much bigger clasp on its bracelet, making it a more comfy dive watch to wear than the first Deepsea D-Blue. As with other Rolex Deepsea models, each Deepsea D-Blue 126660 timepiece is skilfully crafted and powered by a first-class caliber 3235 movement. This model also features a broader strap, and a case that has been slightly redesigned compared to previous versions of this Rolex Sea-Dweller watch. Other than that, many of the essential parts are still intact and unchanged. It is still the best diving watch in the Rolex Sea Dweller collection that you can find when planning a scuba diving adventure. Its main highlight is that it is a robust, durable, and functional piece crafted to survive virtually any variant temperature underwater. It is the perfect watch for anyone seeking to prove Rolex’s outstanding skills as a legendary watchmaker. Rolex Deepsea D-Blue 116660 DB from Watchshopping.com Case: 904L Oyster Steel Case dimension: 44 mm Dial: D-Blue Water-resistant: 3,900 m or 12,800 feet Power reserve up to 70-hour (Certified as Superlative Chronometer) Bezel and Case Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Bracelet l Photo by jilemon from Flickr One extremely distinguishable feature of the Rolex Deepsea Blue is its case. Crafted from 904L Oystersteel to ensure its durability, the case measures about 44mm in diameter. Oystersteel is known for being one of the best materials to use when making watch cases, since it possesses superb resistance. It also offers an excellent, gleaming finish after polishing and maintains its grandeur even when exposed to the harshest of environments and temperatures underwater. Some users of Deepsea Blue report that the watch can feel slightly bigger when worn on the wrist. Despite measuring 44mm, it looks a little more like a 45mm case. The good thing, however, is that the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue still feels extremely comfortable around your wrist and gives you a nice sense of balance when wearing it. Its bezel features a black, unidirectional, and rotating ceramic bezel with numerals graduated on a 60-minute scale. The bezel is secured in place using a Ringlock system. If you’re not familiar with the Ringlock system, it is an innovative case architecture made by Rolex itself which allows the Rolex Deepsea Blue to resist any sorts of massive pressures underwater even at depths of 3,900 meters. It is made using three elements: nitrogen-alloyed steel on its central ring that shapes the system’s backbone, a sapphire crystal (5.5 mm thick), and grade 5 titanium for its caseback. The Rolex Deepsea D-Blue also comes with a helium escape valve. The helium escape valve is a type of safety valve created by Rolex back in 1967 and it functions as a decompression chamber for the timepiece so it can survive the most extreme pressures underwater. Dial Even with just a quick glance at the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue, you’d be hard-pressed to forget its stunning and unique dial. This timepiece showcases a perfect two-toned gradient dial, starting from a brilliant blue hue at the top to the engulfing black depths below. Its two-color gradient dial commemorates the accomplishment of man’s journey into the ocean depths, exploring the deepest place on earth — the iconic Mariana Trench. Furthermore, the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue’s dial, with its semi-glossy features and scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, can capture and reflect light gorgeously. This is a dial you cannot find in the rest of Rolex’s watch collections. It is the main highlight of this timepiece, a grand and awe-inspiring face that is sure to catch everyone’s attention. Movement Another remarkable feature of the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue is that it is equipped with a powerful in-house caliber 3235 that comes with an antimagnetic Parachrom-Blue hairspring. The automatic caliber 3235 is an upgraded version of the caliber 3135 that is used in the older Rolex Deepsea Blue. This caliber is the newest generation movement crafted by Rolex. It comes with a whopping 14 patents, a testament to just how far Rolex pushed the limits of watchmaking technology with the caliber 3235. The caliber 3235 offers a high power reserve of up to 70 hours, impressively high time precision, resistance to shocks and magnetic fields, and reliability and functionality that any wearer can depend on when exploring the abyssal world. Furthermore, the caliber 3235 features Rolex’s newest Chronergy, a perfect combination of the existing Paramagnetic blue parachrom hairspring and high energy efficiency. It is also COSC Chronometer-certified, which guarantees its powerful performance. Caseback Equipped with a titanium caseback, the Rolex Deepsea Blue is impressively flexible because of the natural qualities of the alloy, providing it more resilience and durability against massive pressures and impacts. It is a caseback crafted to survive and resist even the extreme pressures underwater.  Bracelet/Strap Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Bracelet l Photo by jilemo from Flickr Like the original version of the Deepsea D-Blue watch, this Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 126660 also features a famous classic Oysterlock bracelet. One upgrade this model comes with, however, is its larger, less tapering strap, which is paired with slightly bigger lugs. This was a big improvement from the original model, which was crafted with too-narrow lugs, so it sometimes felt unbalanced when sitting on a wearer’s wrist. The redesigned lugs of the Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 126660, with its larger fit, offers more comfort to the wearer and looks more proportionately shaped on the watch. This timepiece also features an Oysterlock clasp to avoid the watch suddenly coming loose from your wrist, and a Glidelock system like its previous version. The bracelet also comes with a revamped diver’s extension, allowing the Rolex Deepsea Blue to fit well on your wrist even when wearing gloves or a wetsuit. Price It is not news that Rolex watches do not come at a low price. Every Rolex timepiece is the product of expert Swiss craftsmanship and Rolex’s extensive history and experience as a watch manufacturer, and all of this shows in its cost. Owning this latest version of the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue 126660 will cost you about USD 17,399.00 retail. Considering the impressive attributes of this watch, this price is honestly extremely worth it. Not only do you get a durable, functional, and first-class dive watch, but you also get all the comfort and ease of wearing a classic Rolex timepiece. The Original: Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Reference 116660 Rolex-Deepsea-D-Blue-116660-2 l Photo by jilemo from FlickrRolex Deepsea D-Blue 16660 l Photo by jilemo from FlickrTwo years before the release of the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 116660, famous film director James Cameron navigated underwater at a depth of around 11,000 meters using a submarine vessel. The vessel was called the Deepsea Challenger, designed to be able to survive the depths of the Pacific Ocean. As part of the this project, Rolex created a particular prototype version of the Rolex Deepsea timepiece, which eventually became popularly known as Oyster Perpetual Date Sea-Dweller DEEPSEA CHALLENGE. This timepiece features water-resistance of up to 12,000 meters, a perfect watch to use when exploring what’s beneath the Pacific Ocean. In 2014, the Swiss luxury watch brand released its newest version of the Rolex Deepsea, featuring a D-Blue dial with the reference number 116660, to commemorate the success of James Cameron’s abyssal expedition. This refreshed version is similar to the previous model in some technical aspects. The greatest distinction, however, is that the 2014 Rolex Deepsea Blue featured a two-tone dial. In addition, the words DEEPSEA were written on the dial in a green tint, a tribute to the inspiration that James Cameron’s Deepsea Challenger vessel was for this watch. Nowadays, this version of the watch is widely known as the Deepsea James Cameron. The Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 116660 is equipped with a 904L stainless steel case developed by Rolex specifically for this watch. Some of its key features include a Ringlock system, a 5mm thick protective sapphire crystal, and a satin-finished and brushed caseback made of titanium. Its dial, with a radiant blue to black gradient, also adds to the natural beauty of this timepiece. In addition, it features a useful date aperture located at the 3 o’clock position. Aside from that, this watch is also equipped with an Oysterlock bracelet measuring 26 mm long. This means that it comes with an Oysterlock safety clasp fitted with its flip-lock extension system. It is crafted this way to ensure it can survive any sorts of impacts and pressures underwater without any risk of coming loose and falling off the wearer’s wrist. It is also equipped with a top-notch Rolex in-house caliber 3135 movement to ensure high accuracy and precision even in aquatic environments.  Today, the Rolex Deepsea D-Blue Ref. 116660 is available for USD 15,500.00. This might be quite an exorbitant price to sum, but if you consider all its top-class features as a diving watch, it is actually quite a fair price. Keep in mind, also, that any watch from Rolex tends to appreciate in value over the years. As such, Rolex watches also make for perfect investment pieces. Opting to buy this Rolex Deepsea Blue watch will not only give you a time-telling accessory to use on your next scuba diving adventure but also offers you the chance to be the owner of a true horological masterpiece. Final Thoughts Rolex never fails to craft high-caliber, high-performing timepieces. Although the Sea-Dweller collection is just a predecessor of Rolex’s first-ever collection of diving timepieces under the Submariner collection, it does not stop the former from being a very sought-after dive timepiece. This is especially true with the updated Rolex Deepsea D-Blue watches. These watches display the brand’s excellent craftsmanship and expertise in horology, offering superb features such as water resistance of up to 3,900 meter and a top-notch in-house caliber 3235 movements. With its iconic face and functionality, this Rolex Deepsea D-Blue diving watch really deserves to be on your radar. Want to know more about other Rolex models, particularly the most expensive watches in their extensive catalog? Check this review we have about 15 Most Expensive Rolex Watches. Featured image from amh1998 on Pixabay

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