Patricia Cabela

Patricia Cabela

First Published: April 26, 2021
  1. Articles by Patricia Cabela
  2. Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711: A Guide To One Of The Most Sought-After Luxury Sports Watch Today

    Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711: A Guide To One Of The Most Sought-After Luxury Sports Watch Today

    When talking about the best luxury watch manufacturers of all time, it is almost impossible to leave the name Patek Philippe out of the conversation. Patek Philippe often steals the spotlight from its other close competitors in the field such as Rolex, Longines, Omega, and Audemars Piguet, because of how it always embodies ultimate and traditional Swiss watchmaking practices, all while incorporating innovative touches, in order to create remarkable, stunning pieces that could last for decades. All true watch enthusiasts know that this independent label is all about excellence, quality, and pure craftsmanship, which is why it comes as no surprise that it remains well-celebrated in the industry to the present day. If not for the seriousness with which Patek Philippe takes Haute Horlogerie, or “the high-art of watchmaking”, it would not hold the title of being the only brand in history that was able to sell eight watches for at least $2 million USD each at auctions. This alone says a great deal about the company and its solid reputation not only among connoisseurs but also among the general public. It serves as irrefutable proof that Patek Philippe’s products are extraordinary, with aesthetics that invoke timelessness and sophistication, as well as reliable mechanisms that prize robustness and longevity above all. From creating simple yet exquisite jewelry watches to crafting complicated watches with all sorts of fun features that exceed expectations, Patek Philippe truly knows how to constantly set the bar high. However, what’s really fascinating is that the label also excels in creating distinctive, one-of-a-kind sports watches that scream elegance and perfection—something that only Patek Philippe could ever pull off. One such sports watch is the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711, which carries an avant-garde design, along with striking features and a powerful mechanism that makes the watch even more desirable to watch fanatics. In this article, we will discuss the charms of the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 and why it deserves a spot in your collection despite being frequently considered an overrated piece due to its extreme popularity. Does it deserve the hype it already boasts? What must-have features does the watch possess that make watch enthusiasts so eager to own one? What makes the Nautilus 5711 so grand and why is it dubbed one of the most coveted pieces from Patek Philippe? These are just some of the questions we will try to explore, and we will give you all the answers you need to help you make the right decision about whether or not to purchase this timepiece. Without further ado, let us find out more about the Nautilus 5711, in particular, its roots, glorious specifications, and outstanding versions which will truly steal your attention. How Patek Philippe Nautilus Came to Life Patek Philippe has been demonstrating its amazing expertise in watchmaking for about 182 years now, making them one of the oldest watchmakers in the world. While its history and background are undeniably superb and incomparable to most other companies, the brand is better known for its unique collections that are truly breathtaking and awe-inspiring. One of these collections is the Patek Philippe Nautilus, which houses chic, classy, and sporty timepieces that stand out easily without even having to try. Unveiled in 1976 as a way to signal the brand’s ventures into the vast world of luxury sports watches, the glamorous range redefines finesse and modernity in sports watches. In addition, the intricacy and fanciness of the Nautilus’s details and parts attest to how the company always strives for rarity and superiority, devoting its efforts to producing each member of the collection with great passion. But how exactly did the Nautilus start capturing the hearts of the public and who is the mastermind behind its iconic birth? The legacy of the Nautilus collection actually began shortly after the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak watch hit the market in 1972. Not only did it make history as the first-ever stainless steel luxury sports wristwatch in the world, but it also changed the perspective of both the masses and watchmakers when it came to steel watches. Although often regarded as the cheaper alternative to gold and titanium, stainless steel is a durable material that is good at resisting all kinds of corrosion. These anti-allergic properties can even bring health benefits to the wearer, especially when worn. While stainless steel had previously been used in affordable and mid-range timepieces, the creation of the Royal Oak led to the overflowing and trailblazing popularity of stainless steel as a sturdy and dependable material for high-end timepieces as well. Inspired by Audemars Piguet’s bold release of the Royal Oak, Patek Philippe finally decided that it was time for them to join the trend and release their own take on the quintessential luxury sports watch. Sticking to their principles, the label wanted their offering to have a versatile and head-turning design, coupled with a well-crafted and robust mechanism to ensure a smooth-sailing performance. They believed that this was the key to their past success, especially given how critics of that age had become increasingly equally concerned with both form and function in watches. Since the release of their first-ever luxury sports watch would have a role in enhancing their image and reminding people of how the brand executed their craft according to the highest standards whilst still upholding their great traditions, Patek Philippe wanted it to be special and extraordinary. Gerald Genta and His Role to Nautilus’ Iconic Birth Patek Philippe scored a huge win when they managed to unintentionally attract the attention of Gérald Genta, the same jewelry designer who invented the Royal Oak for Audemars Piguet. Genta reportedly came up with the idea of the Nautilus during the 1974 Baselworld Trade Fair, where many watchmakers and jewelers from around the world gathered to display their masterpieces. While eating at a restaurant inside the hotel he was staying at, the artist suddenly came across a group of Patek Philippe employees talking to one another at the opposite end of the hall. This is when he suddenly had a eureka moment, which prompted him to ask for a piece of paper and a pencil from a waiter serving dishes near him. He impressively finished the initial sketch of the Nautilus in just five minutes, whilst observing the movements and gestures of the Patek Philippe workers. Genta’s design was inspired by portholes usually found on huge ships and resulted in the Nautilus possessing a rounded bezel and protruding edges on both left and right sides of the case. The aforementioned candid moment led to the birth of the whole Nautilus line, which has long been considered a game-changing collection for the brand, whose offerings emphasize lavishness and whose methods and aesthetics often revolve around intricate delicacy. Apart from sporting a peculiar case shape, all watches from the Nautilus roster have colorful and appealing dials that would make you drool in complete satisfaction and admiration. Not to mention, they also include many other interesting designs that Gérald Genta is known for, including the bracelet, dial arrangement, and bezel composition. Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 3700 | Photo from @chronovantage2 on Instagram Launched amidst the ongoing quartz crisis, the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 3700-1A is the first member of the iconic collection that continues to make waves to the present day. Appearance-wise, it sports a hard and mesmerizing 42mm octagonal case, along with a medium-sized crown that is protected by crown guards and hands that contain luminous material for greater visibility in dark conditions. Besides the fact that it comes with a thick integrated bracelet that is recognizable even from afar, the dial also features a horizontal line pattern that is pleasing to the eye. All of its indices are numberless and are engraved in baton style, and the small yet impactful signature placed below the 12 o’clock position only adds to the minimalistic aura of the dial. This effect is further compounded by the date display that replaces the 3 o’clock marker, which is so subtle to the point you could almost miss it at first glance. The text inside the said window is legible enough to be seen at a distance and people who like paying attention to small details would really appreciate how the date aperture was incorporated into the whole look of the watch. Making it even more exceptional, the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 3700-1A came with a hefty price tag that was close to the prices of real gold and rose gold timepieces released at the time. In fact, it was even recognized as one of the costliest stainless steel watches in the world. This tactic came as a surprise for true enthusiasts given that the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 3700-1A was a time-and-date only model. Nevertheless, the elevated price must have been intriguing to watch connoisseurs, as many still wanted to experience its wonders, which has, over the years, led to a continuously growing demand for almost all Nautilus pieces ever produced. Where did Patek Philippe get the name Nautilus? The Patek Philippe Nautilus was named after the submarine used by Captain Nemo in Jules Verne’s 1870 French novel titled 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. The blueprint of all Nautilus timepieces serves as an ode to the original structure of Captain Nemo’s Nautilus submarine, particularly its porthole that has an oval shape. Despite not being a diver’s watch, the Patek Philippe Nautilus has provided water resistance of up to a whopping 120 meters and this is all thanks to the extraordinary construction of the case, particularly its ear-like sides and massive lugs that prevents any moisture from interfering with the watch’s core. Throughout its 45-year run, the Nautilus roster has grown in order to offer a greater variety to potential consumers who have been wanting to give its members a try and who have been curious about the great reviews surrounding all its watches. From only endorsing stainless steel models, the glamorous line now offers other material options such as rose gold and white gold as well as case size variations. Furthermore, some of the watches in the Nautilus collection also come with additional functionalities such as a moon phase display, a power reserve indicator, a chronograph feature, a 60-minute counter, and even a dual time zone display. What’s more is that all of the current Nautilus models now come with upgraded and enhanced in-house movements, stepping away from the automatic caliber 920 made by Jaeger LeCoultre in favor of three of the biggest names in the industry, namely Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet, and of course, Patek Philippe. The said mechanism, known as the Caliber 28-255 after undergoing various in-house finishing and processes, was used to power the first set of Nautilus models ever produced, including the Ref. 3700. This goes to show how this Swiss company always tries its best to innovate its products, while still practicing the traditional norms the brand has developed since its establishment. Some may say that the Patek Philippe Grand Complications or the Patek Philippe Aquanaut are more worth the money and are more attractive and reliable timepieces, but no one can deny that the Nautilus is unrivaled when it comes to uniqueness and value. Amidst the numerous beloved iterations of the Nautilus collection, the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 remains a highly popular piece, which we will discuss and dissect further in this article. In fact, it is arguably the most coveted timepiece ever produced by any manufacturer in the entire history of watches. Aside from bearing a masculine and commanding appearance, this timepiece has distinct charms that make it the perfect epitome of a modern classic. Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711: The Perfect Daily Wristwatch Perhaps the most famous Nautilus model out there, the Patek Philippe 5711 is one of the jaw-dropping upgrades to the original Nautilus 3700 released by the brand back in the early 1970s. The Patek Philippe 5711 was introduced to the public for the very first time in 2006 in celebration of the Nautilus collection’s 30th-year anniversary and is considered by many lovers to be the most sought-after contemporary luxury watch. This is one big reason why this watch is frequently the center of horological talks and debates and why it comes with a relatively high price tag. Certain rumors even claim that it can take up to 8 to 10 years for an individual to finally own a 5711 piece with the correct retail price. Some people, especially the impatient ones and those that do not stick with any specific budget when it comes to their collections, resort to buying from legitimate secondhand markets and trusted online websites, willing to pay more than the original cost. Now that the whole 5711 series is nearing the end of its production, expect all of its models to become harder to acquire as prices will continue to soar, given how Patek Philippe only releases a limited number of Nautilus pieces each year. Aside from the fact that the Nautilus 5711 demonstrates what refined and ultramodern watchmaking is about, it also attests to the creativity, mastery, and rigor Patek Philippe demonstrates when conceptualizing and creating their memorable pieces. Just by looking at the said second-generation Nautilus model, you will recognize that there is beauty in simplicity and why watches with little to no ornamentations often catch the attention of many, just by virtue of their structure and elegant appeal. Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 5711/1A-010 | Photo from @watchourluxembourg on Instagram Inspired by its original predecessor, the Nautilus 3700, which is often the star of many auctions given its rich background and its breathtaking attributes, the Nautilus 5711 has a handsome and prepossessing aura, coupled with a striking design that all men from different walks of life would surely appreciate. Even young and professional women could easily rock this piece if they wish to due to its versatile and classic vibe. Apart from relying on a high-powered mechanism, the watch also comes with a relatively wide case—slightly bigger than the exterior of the 3700—that easily fits any wrist type whether slim or stout. Not to mention, it is also made out of premium and exquisite materials that guarantee its fantastic serviceability and long life span. It is no wonder why many collectors and watch lovers consider any 5711 models as valuable investment pieces, which can accompany them to endless occasions for decades to come. Although often regarded as a basic timepiece without many bells and whistles, the Nautilus 5711 is the best choice available if you want a casual sports watch that could double as a dress watch you can bring to any formal gatherings. Created to deviate from typical concepts, it does not come with any detailed or complicated rotating bezels but it still comes with an impressive water resistance level that is close to the ratings true diving pieces have. Others even compare it to the Zenith Defy Titanium and the Tudor Black Bay 41, but nothing can beat how the Nautilus 5711 performs, how it delivers great results, and how it elevates the style and outfit of any wearer in an instant. Regardless of its price, it is a truly-must have watch for anyone who is looking for a piece they could proudly parade around. Up Close With The Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711/1A-014 Patek Philippe first announced a cease in the production of its flagship three-hand Patek Philippe Nautilus in 5711/1A-010 steel with blue dial variation in early 2021. Since then, many connoisseurs have been trying their luck in securing their very own piece before resellers take advantage of this watch’s rarity and legacy. The sudden news of the halt in manufacturing took the watch world by surprise given that the legendary model is still considered a vital part of the brand’s inspiring and rich heritage. There is still no unified reason why the aforementioned watch is extremely popular but a lot of true enthusiasts consider it as a prized possession because of its size, shape, and overall elegant construction that no other brands could ever imitate. Often the center of attraction, the Patek Philippe Ref. 5711/1A-010 closely resembles the brand’s first-ever luxury sports watch, especially in terms of its exterior. This is probably the reason why people are dying to get ahold of this timepiece, as it gives them the chance to own a rare gem but in a much more modernized version. While a lot of people have resigned themselves to the discontinuation announcement, a lot of watch lovers have been praying for the release of more versions of the Nautilus 5711 before it actually goes off the market at the end of this year. Much to their delight, Patek Philippe released a new member of the 5711/1A gang in April 2021 as part of the final stretch of the range. Called the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 5711/1A-014, the watch also pays homage to the original Nautilus time-and-date only watch, but with an olive green dial. If you have been planning to get yourself one, below are the important details and a brief review regarding the 5711/1A-014 you should take note of. Case material: Stainless SteelCase dimension: 40mmMovement: Mechanical in-house, Automatic Calibre 26-330 S CPower reserve: Minimum – 35 hours; Maximum – 45 hoursWater resistance: 120 metersCase As mentioned above, the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 5711/1A-014 boasts a case size of 40mm, which is the standard for the modern Nautilus watches, including its direct predecessor, the 5711/1A-010. Most people consider this a fairly large watch, given its wide and stout appearance. Its origins may have also played a significant role in such a perception since the Ref. 3700/1 was commonly known as the “Jumbo” back in the day due to its bigger size. However, the Nautilus 5711/1A-014 still feels extremely comfortable when worn on the wrist despite its size. Not to mention, it is convenient to wear while going about your daily tasks due to its well-balanced measurements and equal proportions. When it comes to height, this model measures about 8.3mm, giving the watch a sleek look and a high-tech feel. This also allows you to easily slip the gorgeous timepiece under your dress shirt’s cuffs. A glance at the watch might give you the illusion that it is quite thick and short due to its bulky top ring, but you will be surprised to know that the Patek Philippe Nautilus watch in question is actually thin, especially from the sides. While it does not necessarily mean that it is lightweight, the slenderness of this timepiece provides a beautiful balance to its overall pristine look, making it a notable and worthy purchase. Even without the presence of any fancy prints or patterns, the cleanness of the case, along with its extremely well-brushed satin finish, makes it more enticing to own. When it comes to the caseback, Patek Philippe does not fail to demonstrate what they are best at, and that is letting the wearers admire how the movement works at any time of the day. Protected by a sapphire crystal that looks clear even from afar, the caseback features six square shapes that serve as the main protection for the movement. In fact, you would not immediately notice the presence of the sapphire crystal unless you inspect the case back closely. This just means that Patek Philippe wants every customer to have an unparalleled timekeeping experience. Putting emphasis on the mechanism, the caseback is also placed in a unique and slightly bulging manner, which also gives the movement more definition. In terms of durability, you can already leave your worries behind as the majority of Patek Philippe Nautilus watches are made from strong and well-built stainless steel. Boasting great characteristics, this metal can withstand a few scratches, dents, and impacts, which is great for people who have fast-paced lifestyles which revolve around extreme activities. Even if you encounter accidental bumps during your commutes, with a stainless steel watch like the 5711/1A-014 as your companion, it is sure to perform well and still look brand-new despite any impacts. While it does not have the same lightweight attributes as titanium, stainless steel ensures that the inner portions of the watch, where the movement is located, are protected and secure from any kinds of moisture, which could otherwise lead to major rust and corrosion. Bezel, Water Resistance and Crown The minimalistic crown of the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711/1A-014 certainly deserves some recognition. Placed in a screw-down manner, it comes with the signature emblem of the brand, which is simple and lovely at the same time. Taking the shape of an old stylized cross, the logo gives off an atmosphere of class and elegance and is the perfect symbol of Patek Philippe’s excellence. If you want to adjust the time, you can just simply pull the crown outwards and turn it in the correct direction. The vertical-teeth edges of the crown ensure a nice and easy grip so that you would not have a hard time changing the time configurations. Since it is also protected by a crown guard with shiny rounded edges, rest assured that the crown will stay at its original position at all times and is unlikely to sustain any damage even if it’s bumped around a little. The newest Patek Philippe 5711 watch also comes with a water resistance rating of 120 meters. This may not be considered a big deal since all Aquanaut models and other watches from the Nautilus collection boast the same capacities. However, it is still an achievement compared to other sports and dress watches in the market. Bear in mind that Patek Philippe Nautilus timepieces are not tool watches. They are only meant to be elegant sports watches so this degree of water resistance is already quite impressive. While you cannot bring the Nautilus 5711/1A-0014 to any extreme water sports activities such as snorkeling or deep-sea diving, it is still well-equipped for your dips in the pool. What’s more, you can also use it while bathing or while swimming in a pool for exercise. All in all, this precious watch will stay high-functioning even when in contact with water, as long as you exercise sufficient precautions and do not take this watch beyond a depth of 120 meters. The bezel of the Patek Philippe Nautilus watch in the 5711/1A-014 variation is also worthy of attention. The octagon-shaped bezel is unrivaled in its minimalism. The bezel is composed of eight thin and refined sharpened edges, a design so unusual that it immediately became a major selling point for all 5711 models ever made. In addition, it allows connoisseurs to easily distinguish the Nautilus lineup from other pieces designed by Gérald Genta for other brands like Rolex and Audemars Piguet. The sapphire crystal contained within the bezel serves as excellent protection for the dial and has a more rounded shape, which makes this 5711/1A-014 model look a little softer and more feminine, thus appealing to many women too. It also distinguishes the Nautilus range from other members of the extensive Patek Philippe catalog. Matching the overall theme of the timepiece, the bezel, along with the full and wide lugs with curved sides, possess the same natural silver hue that gives off a feeling of clean professionalism under any sort of lighting conditions. Dial This walkthrough will not be complete if we will not discuss the dial, which is the highlight of the Patek Philippe Nautilus Ref. 5711/1A-014. The style of the dial strongly resembles that of its forerunner, the 5711/1A-010. This version’s dial comes in a pretty olive green color. It is subtle and enrapturing, to the point that you could stare at the dial all day without feeling too overwhelmed or intimidated. Not to mention, its alluring sunburst finish and rugged texture of horizontal lines make the whole timepiece reminiscent of old-school watches we can find in vintage stores and online markets. In terms of its features, the dial comes with gold-applied hour-markers that take the shape of batons, all of which are equipped with a luminous coating so there is good visibility even during conditions where there is little to no light available. All of the indices bear the same silver tone as the case, bracelet, lugs, and crown for a more unified and cohesive look. The 12 o’clock position adds a little variety to the dial, as it is marked with two baton-shaped indices for swifter distinction. Both the hour and minute hands of the dial are silver and baton-styled like the indices, except they come with rounded edges that complement the whole aesthetic of the watch. The only hand marker that is different is the sweeping seconds hand, which takes the form of a simple elongated stick that stretches out towards the very end of the dial. Sticking to the signature functionalities of the first-ever Nautilus watch, the 5711/1A-014 also comes with a date display that replaces the 3 o’clock marker. Indeed, this watch brings only the essential functions a wearer would need in every situation. You will also see minute white-colored dots surrounding the dial’s external edges, which can serve as a guide in telling the time more accurately. Patek Philippe really did a great job in keeping the watch’s face as minimalistic and uncluttered as possible, allowing spectators to admire the construction and concept behind its design without being too distracted by the watch’s functions. The inclusion of a signature with no grandiose font style or vibrant color below the 12 o’clock indices makes the new Nautilus watch even more trendy. To conclude, everything about the dial of the 5711/1A-014 is quite similar to its predecessor. It is an upgraded version of the Nautilus that still maintains the classic designs that made the Nautilus line popular, to begin with. Indeed, the 5711/1A-014 proves to be a top-tier timepiece that will always provide you the confidence and the opportunity to shine in any room you are in. Movement Since the movement of the Patek Philippe Nautilus watch in Ref. 5711/1A-014 is made in-house, you can expect that its performance will always be top-notch. Specifically, the Patek Philippe 5711/1A-014 relies on an automatic movement called the Caliber 26-330 S C, which is a modified version of the Caliber 324 S C that powers all the existing 5711/1A-010 models in the world. Aside from boasting a power reserve of up to 45 hours, the 31-jewel and 212-component movement also beat at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour (“vph”). It also has a hacking seconds function that allows you to adjust the time more accurately. The movement is completed with an engraving of the brand’s logo that gives off a very exclusive feel. With this movement, expect this quality timepiece to last you for the succeeding generations to come. Bracelet Just like its case, the Patek Philippe 5711/1A-014’s bracelet is made from stainless steel, with central thick links that ensure it is a nice fit on any wrist. Adding to that, it also has a double folding clasp, adorned with the same logo you will see in the movement and crown. This is much better than the clasp used in the 3700 variant since this clasp is a lot more secure and ensures that the watch would not fall from your wrist by accident. Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 Pros and Cons Pros It comes from a respected brand. Need we say more? Patek Philippe has acquired a great deal of recognition over the past few decades and it is all well-deserved, given the attention to detail and supreme level of workmanship they put into every piece they release. In fact, famed royalty, scientists, and artists among others are all part of their amazing clientele history and they certainly would not buy Patek Philippe products if they weren’t of the highest quality and class, right? If you’re the type of person who has high standards when it comes to your timepieces and cares about the brand’s reputation and values, you do not have to worry because Patek Philippe will surely exceed your expectations. By owning a Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 watch, you are doing yourself a favor, as it is an incredible timepiece you could wear for the rest of your life. It is a great investment piece. Considering how their prices keep on increasing over the last decade due to consistently high demand, any Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 watch would have a great resale value. If you ever come across an opportunity to own such a three-hand piece with a blue dial, do not ever let it go. This is especially if it comes with a reasonable price, since this watch will surely be harder to find in the next few years due to the line’s imminent discontinuation. Cons It is hard to acquire. We are not overreacting when we say that it could really take years for you to get your own Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 watch from an authorized dealer. In fact, it is almost impossible now to get your hands on the newest model with the olive green dial, given how it is only produced in limited pieces. With the Nautilus 5711 line already coming to an end, we are also very unlikely to see restocks. You can always opt to buy from trusted resellers though but expect it to come at a whopping price that is two or three times higher than its original selling cost. Price Range of the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 As of right now, a Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 Ref. 5711/1A-014 goes for a retail price of around $36,500 USD. This may be slightly higher if you go for pieces coming from authorized resellers in secondhand markets. In fact, many secondhand resellers sell a good quality Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711 for around $100,000 USD. Final Notes Elegant, stylish, and compelling. These are the three best terms that describe the Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711, especially the 5711/1A-014 variation. While many are still skeptical about buying it because of its gigantic price tag, there is no denying that is one of the best watches out there, offering you everything you could need for an everyday timepiece. There is not much to complain about it too because its features and design are striking and versatile enough to match any style and to make you stand out among the crowd. Now that the Nautilus 5711 series is coming to an end, it will be quite interesting to see how Patek Philippe will utilize their creativity in order to create a succeeding model that could also pass as a heritage piece in the future. Given how the brand likes mixing traditional elements with modern concepts, it will not be surprising if they release yet another series that goes beyond the norm. Nonetheless, nothing can change the fact that the Patek Philippe 5711 will always remain as a true icon in the watch realm. Interested in knowing more about the brand Patek Philippe as well as its other offerings? Make sure to check out our articles on the Holy Trinity of Watchmakers as well as 10 Luxury Wall Clocks To Upgrade Your Home or Office. Photos from Patek Philippe’s website unless stated otherwise Featured image from Patek Philippe

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  3. IWC Mark XVIII: A Guide To The Exquisite Modern Pilot Watch

    IWC Mark XVIII: A Guide To The Exquisite Modern Pilot Watch

    Known for being one of the top names in the Swiss watchmaking industry today, IWC has been creating timeless, streamlined, and fully functional pieces for both men and women. These products are not only made with a passion for Swiss watchmaking craftsmanship but also with utmost dedication to producing straightforward yet distinct and well-thought-out designs. This is why many genuine watch aficionados and even casual wearers continue to patronize the label. IWC’s line-up of watches may be too simple for some in terms of appearance and color choices, but their classic aesthetics are undeniably cool and striking. However, what stands out the most among IWC’s offerings is its premier and popular collections of pilot watches, which exhibit a different level of sophistication as well as amazing features.  One of which is the IWC Mark XVIII. Considered a new addition to the Mark series and a direct successor of the iconic IWC Mark XVII, the IWC Mark XVIII carries a cutting-edge design coupled with ultramodern features that effortlessly make it a quintessential pilot watch of today. Let’s take a closer look at this top-tier timepiece, which continuously raises the reputation of IWC among other luxury watch brands. How does it differ from the previous IWC Mark watches? What makes it so special among the other aviation watches released by the brand? More specifically, let’s find out why it deserves to be included in your must-have list. The IWC Mark Pilot Watches Through The Years With the growing trend for aviation watches in the 1930s, IWC also developed a desire to create their own take for the said timepieces to help improve the lives and work of pilots. The brand wanted their very first pilot watch release to not only withstand any kind of extreme threats such as high and low temperatures ranging from -40 degrees Celsius to 40 degrees Celsius and extreme light conditions but also provide a distinct touch to any style. This is why the IWC Special Pilot’s Watch, also known as the “Spezialuhr für Flieger” and “Mark IX”, which was released in 1936, came with a tough and shatterproof crystal as well as an antimagnetic escapement that thoroughly protects the watch’s movement, called the Caliber 83. Aside from having a rotating bezel that comes with an arrowhead indicator which pilots can use to take note of various periods times especially when the plane is about to take off, the watch also features large and luminous hour-markers and hands that provide legibility no matter what time of the day it is. Not to mention, its color scheme is on the neutral side, which makes it not too overwhelming to wear and carry around. IWC Mark X A few years later, IWC then released an enhanced and much more conventional version of their classic pilot watch, reserved only for military use. Called the IWC Mark X, this model was part of the British Armed Forces’ official military watch line-up, which they later supplied to their troop members. The pilot watches included in the said list, which was known today among collectors as the “Dirty Dozen”, carry various specifications required by the British Ministry of Defense. These features have aided the army in fulfilling their duties for their country. Together with the watches produced by other big names in the industry at that time such as Omega, Buren, Eterna, Cyma, Longines, and Jaeger Le Coultre, the IWC Mark X started accompanying the missions and voyage of British military members in 1944. The Mark X pretty much had similar characteristics as the Mark IX. Both had humongous indexes and clearly visible texts and hands. The case is also huge enough to fit all types of wrists, whether slender or wide. However, there are still some modifications that significantly improved how the watch performs in general. Some of them are not that noticeable unless inspected closely or unless you open the watch and see the core. Other than the fact that the 35mm watch has a tough Faraday cage that protects the mechanism from any kind of magnetism, the watch is also equipped with the Caliber 83 15 movement that brings utmost precision and longevity. The movement exactly runs at 18,000 vibrations per hour (“vph”), which is quite a good number for watches released during the same era.  If the troops needed to plunge into the water for their expeditions, they did not have to worry as the watch’s exterior is protected by a strong and hard ring, which also has waterproofing attributes — thus, the birth of the markings that say “W.W.W.” which stands for Watch, Wrist and Waterproof. Amidst all these, what sets this watch apart from the other watches included in the “Dirty Dozens” is its extraordinary snap-on caseback. While it makes the timepiece more susceptible to moisture risks, the caseback is still pleasing and appealing to look at. IWC made sure to even secure it by using a lead seal to protect the whole watch. Indeed, this is the vintage model you should look out for if you want something that does not only offers amazing functionalities but also remind you of a very important period in our world’s history. IWC Mark XI The IWC Mark XI or simply the Mark 11 Pilot Watch is one of the most sought-after and prized timepieces ever released by the brand. First launched in 1949, it marked the beginning of IWC’s popularity in terms of creating legendary aviator’s watches that are not only meant for professional pursuits but also while conducting your daily commitments and endeavors. Embodying sophistication in all aspects, the watch comes with a water-resistance and anti-magnetism capability as well as a sleek dial, with luminous shapes at the end of the 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock, 9 o’clock, and 12 o’clock positions. Not to mention, the watch’s hands are also a mixture of baton shape and sword shape, which makes it easier for anyone to identify the respective placements dedicated for the hour and the minute. The signature is also not too big or small, which prevents wearers from experiencing major distractions. Moreover, the dial is in a cool black color, which blends well with the silver hue of the case. To guard the watch against extreme pressures, it also comes with a screwed top ring, along with luminous hands that gleam effectively especially during dark conditions. Created specifically for the Royal Air Force (RAF), the Mark XI is the epitome of a true IWC Pilot watch for it boasts the much-needed attributes that an aviator will need. While the aforementioned models, namely the Mark IX and the Mark X, boast great features that most pilot watches have and that you never simply see in other vintage models we see lurking around the secondhand markets today, they are not considered Pilot watches since they specifically accompanied the British army for their tasks. What’s more, the Mark X watches do not come with any anti-magnetism capacities that a genuine aviators watch should have. Despite the confusion, the Mark IX, Mark X, and of course, the Mark XI became extremely well-loved by all watch connoisseurs given how neat and readable their dials are. The color combinations they came with also easily fit most men’s tastes. IWC Mark XII The IWC Mark XI watch maintained a healthy and solid fan base for around four decades. It is not so surprising to see given how trailblazing and stunning it is, from its pristine exterior parts and luscious strap down to its firm caseback and trustworthy movement. In fact, it did not need any tweaks at all, both major and minor, proving that the amount of hard work IWC poured into making such an incredible model was all worth it. However, as the demands for an upgrade of the iconic timepiece continued growing, IWC finally made a decision to release a new jaw-dropping version in 1993, which now comes with an automatic mechanism.  Called the IWC Mark XII, this 36mm model looks identical to its direct predecessor, with few minor upgrades on the side. The unacquainted would surely have a slightly difficult time telling them apart. One of the differences from the IWC Mark XI that you will instantly notice is that it comes with a different movement, thus the appearance of the “Automatic” text on the bottom part of the watch’s dial, just above the 6 o’clock position. Aside from this, the luminous indicators beside the 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock, 9 o’clock, and 12 o’clock marks are slightly faded, but they do not affect the overall appeal of the timepiece at all. Lastly, the watch also comes with a date indication that seamlessly replaced the 3 o’clock position, which is quite convenient if you like to be updated all the time and if you like keeping things organized. IWC Mark XV The IWC Mark XV watch marked the beginning of the brand’s journey and relationship with the general public. Six years after the Mark XII was introduced, the Mark XV started gracing the retail stores with much sophistication and gracefulness. Rather than embodying a utilitarian vibe, the watch had a much simpler concept that was easier to comprehend and navigate. This is pretty much the reason why many enthusiasts consider the Mark XV as a piece that is more suited for regular civilians, despite being included in the brand’s aviation and military watch lineup. Apart from boasting a bigger case size of 38mm, this time-and-date only timepiece also utilized an automatic in-house 21-jewel Caliber 37524 movement based on ETA 2892-A2 rather than a 36-jewel mechanism produced by another luxury company, Jaeger Le Coultre, which you can see in IWC Mark XV’s predecessor. It also has a date window, sitting closely beside the 3 o’clock position. Proudly showing the world the brand’s magnificent creation, the signature is also written in a huge font that creates a well-balanced look for the whole dial. IWC Mark XVI  Continuing their legacy and expressing their desire to keep up with the fast-paced world, IWC dedicated itself to putting out more watches under the Mark series. The brand’s vision is to make them look more cohesive yet unique to the eyes of many, with little to no modifications included. To fit the taste of modern men, the succeeding timepieces are not only characterized by neater and chicer dials but also bigger case sizes. Signaling the new century ahead, the company released the very first contemporary version of their iconic aviator and navigator timepieces in 2006. Called the Mark XVI, the 39mm timepiece endorsed variety by replacing the 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock, 9 o’clock, and 12 o’clock positions with baton-style and triangle indicators as well as a date display, while also giving wearers additional strap options like leather ones. The hands also give a direct ode to the brand’s classic Big Pilot watch, given that they look longer to match the diameter of the dial. In terms of power, the Mark XVI utilizes an in-house movement known as the IWC 30110, which is also based on the ETA 2892-A2. Despite all these big changes, the watch still demonstrates amazing anti-magnetic resistance as well as the ability to battle strong water pressures. Unable to fully accept the changes brought by modern times, IWC loyalists were against the whole idea of the Mark series’ major revamp, which is why the brand was left with no choice but to halt the Mark XVI’s production in 2012. IWC Mark XVII IWC Mark XVII | Photo @sjpulvirent on InstagramEvery painful ending leads to new beginnings, as they say, and true enough, IWC was able to quickly rise from the heavy criticisms by releasing the IWC Mark XVII watch in 2012. As many brands are becoming more fearless when it comes to themes and designs during that time, IWC also plunged into the trend by coming up with a very experimental look for the said timepiece. With a case size of 41mm and a height of 10.8mm, the Mark XVII is still considered the biggest watch from the series. Swaying away from usual layouts, you will also see a medium-sized vertical date display on the right side of the timepiece, with a bright red pointer that serves as its focal point. Adding a more glamorous feel, it also comes with a stainless steel bracelet with a clicking adjustment clasp. Just like its close predecessor, it relies on the Caliber 30110, which has a power reserve of up to 42 hours. IWC Mark XVIII: The Handsome Tool Watch That Breaks Barriers IWC Mark XVIII Edition “Le Petit Prince” | Photo from Nathan Ashfield on FlickrThe IWC Mark XVIII, also known as the Mark XVIII and the Pilot’s Watch Mark XVIII, is considered the latest update to the iconic and timeless Mark series that solidified the brand’s reputation as a leader and expert in manufacturing trustworthy aviator watches. Launched in 2016, the watch may not be one of the newest offerings by the brand, but it is undeniably among the well-loved and celebrated pieces ever released by IWC throughout its entire history — all because of the simplicity and directness it brings to the table. Although often mentioned in a lot of horological conversations and watch forums because of the sudden reversal in terms of its general updates from the face composition, additional features such as the date display as well as case size, the Mark XVIII undeniably bears a high level of prestige, as well as enticing charms similar to what general vintage IWC watches exhibit. This makes it a great collector’s item for any watch lover who constantly seeks to put thrill into their collection. Taking inspiration from one of its original forerunners called the Mark XI or simply Mark 11, which also takes the lead in many star-studded auctions due to its historic and trailblazing attributes, the IWC Mark XVIII  is exquisite in all aspects. However, this pilot watch can also pass as an everyday dress watch despite the athletic and commanding feel it gives off from time to time. Apart from carrying close resemblance to its predecessors, which attest to how IWC likes keeping things in a consistent manner, the timepiece also carries reliable and strong components, further making it a valuable watch you could even pass down to the succeeding generations. Anatomy of the IWC Mark XVIII Among the most coveted models from the diverse IWC Mark XVIII line is the IW327009 version. It may look quite plain on the outside but it will surely change your perspective about tool watches once you get to know it from a deeper perspective. If you are currently in the process of deciding whether you should finally give in to the temptation and purchase the watch, here are specifications and other important details you should familiarize yourself with. The following information will convince you that it is an incredible piece to own and that it is worthy of gracing your wrist.   Case material: Stainless Steel Case dimension: 40mm Movement: Mechanical, Automatic Power reserve: 42 hours Water resistance: 60m Case With just one look at the stunning case of the IWC Pilot Mark XVIII Ref. IW327009, you will instantly know why it is slowly becoming a hot item these days despite being released a few years ago. Unlike its direct predecessors, this one sports a case size of 40mm, which is quite smaller than the Mark XVIII but slightly bigger than the timepiece that inspired the whole Mark series, the Mark XI. The dimensions are not too large or too small, but rather just enough to fit any wrist. Many were expecting that IWC will release the follow-up to their 2012 model with a humongous case size based on the trend it implements. However, the brand demonstrated the unexpected with the Mark XVIII. Despite this, the case stands out not because it has ornamentations or patterns but because it is straightforward yet attractive from every angle. Due to the case’s wide arrangement, any consumer would find the watch comfortable and convenient to wear. Not to mention, the proportioned structure also allows potential wearers to fully admire the beauty of its smooth dial. Slipping the watch under your shirt’s cuff would not be a problem either, given how this specific Mark XVIII model only measures up to 11mm in height and 50mm in terms of lug-to-lug size. When it comes to durability, you do not have to worry as well since this understated timepiece is made with a sturdy and low-maintenance stainless steel material. Aside from the fact that it can handle a few bumps and slight impacts, it also ensures that the core and other inner parts of the watch are protected from all kinds of moisture and corrosion threats. While the bezel does not offer any kind of special characteristics like a tachymeter scale or diamond embellishments, it still looks pristine because of its beautiful satin finish. Giving contrast to the rest of the watch, the top ring is in a silver hue, giving off an industrial appeal. Matching its aesthetics, the lugs are also in the same color, with a defined yet curvy structure that provides more edge to the overall appearance of the timepiece. Crown, Caseback, Crystal, and Water Resistance There are many good things worth noting and emphasizing about the IWC Mark XVIII Ref. IW327009. Even its smallest parts such as the crowns and crystal bear great significance. Apart from bearing an emblem that showcases the logo of the brand, the crown of the screwed-down, which makes sure that it remains with a water resistance of up to 60 meters or 197 feet. This is not a bad specification at all considering that you can still bring it to your trips to the pool as well as casual snorkeling activities. Despite not having any crown guards at all, the crown still looks great due to its oversized figure as well as fluted patterns on the sides. When it comes to the caseback, the watch definitely proved its creativity by placing a grand logo in an airplane shape in the middle, symbolizing that the Mark XVIII is part of IWC’s iconic lineup of pilot watches. Placed against the same polished stainless steel material just like what you will see in the front, a text that says “International Watch Co. / Pilot’s Watch” surrounds the emblem neatly, along with other vital information, such as water resistance and serial number. For those who are fond of seeing the watch’s movement from time to time, you might need to note that this model does not give a glimpse of the mechanisms at all. Despite this, IWC attests that the caseback will protect the whole watch from dust, rust, water, and any kind of threats that might harm its performance. Plus, being an aviator’s watch, the Mark XVIII is equipped with a soft-iron inner case, which thoroughly prevents it from coming in contact with strong magnetic fields that could potentially affect its accuracy. Almost all other luxury brands in the market utilize the infamous sapphire crystal for their watches, but IWC still incorporated the said component into their creation since it offers a much more reliable level of strength compared to its competitors. Aside from keeping the piece secured from abrupt changes in atmospheric pressures, sapphire crystal rarely gets affected by scratches and impacts unless they are major ones. Moreover, the material provides convenience to any wearer since its appearance is always clean and smooth, ensuring that you will be able to read the time precisely anytime, anywhere. These are enough reasons to explain why watches made with sapphire crystal— such as the Pilot’s Watch Mark XVIII — are quite hefty on the pocket. At the end of the day, the brand just wants the best for their loyal and potential customers, while also giving them more than what they paid for. Dial Nothing much has changed in terms of the dial of the IWC Mark XVIII watch, when put beside the Mark XI and the Mark XVIII, which are its original blueprint and forerunner, respectively. All of them want nothing but to bring modesty, legibility, and clearness, which is why the unacquainted would always get confused about how these supreme watches differ from one another. However, by doing lots of research and reading, you will know that Mark XVIII is a remarkable timepiece on its own, with modern technologies serving as its backbone. Crafted to organize the perspective of the user, the dial of the IWC Mark XVIII is only equipped with the essential functions you will be needing on a daily basis. In the case of pilots, the dial only has features that are necessary for doing their jobs appropriately. One of these useful functionalities is a date window peeking at the 3 o’clock position. Despite causing major commotions in watch forums due to its peculiar arrangement, the date display still does its job well mainly because the texts you will see on its surface are in a crisp white color, which endorses good readability. Since the watch’s dial is slightly textured and is coated with a deep black color, featuring white-toned hands and Arabic-style hour-markers that complement the overall neat look, anyone can easily determine the time without feeling overwhelmed at all. Specifically, both hour and minute pointers are in Flieger-style, which you typically see in the IWC Big Pilot collection as well as other contemporary members of the Mark series, while the seconds hand is elongated enough to promote greater legibility. To make the watch look more simple, the brand added the 6 and 9 numerals back to the dial— which disappeared in the Mark XVII watch — with the exception of the 12 o’clock and 3 o’clock mark that still embody the same triangle and date display layout, which also serve as a way to pay homage to historic IWC watches produced by the brand in the past. What’s more, these huge markings, along with the hour and minute hands, are coated with luminous elements, powered by the SuperLuminova technology for better visibility, especially when faced with dim light conditions. IWC could have done a better job in putting lume to all of the hour-markers, but the watch is still exceptional even for the years to come. All in all, the arrangement of all elements found in the background is symmetrical and well-categorized, which makes room for more focus and fewer distractions when it comes to the timekeeping process. Movement Hailing from a renowned brand, you can only expect that the IWC Pilot Mark XVIII Ref. IW327009 will deliver only the best service especially when it comes to its movement. This is why IWC made the 163-component Caliber IWC 35111 automatic movement as the said timepiece’s source of power. This mechanism takes after the Sellita SW300-1 movement, which boasts a power reserve of up to 48 hours. Not to mention, it also has 25 jewels and runs at a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour or 4.0 hertz. Since the IWC 35111 movement is somehow thin, you would not be able to see any bulging shape on the back of the watch. Emphasizing its great capacities, it also makes the movement of the central seconds hand swift and on point. Price of the IWC Mark XVIII Despite being the latest addition to the Mark series, the IWC Mark XVIII watch is more reasonably priced than its direct predecessor. This is understandable though since IWC removed a lot of features from the Mark XVII to create the simpler yet cooler Mark 18 timepiece. With a typical price tag of around $4,000 USD to $5,000 USD, you will surely get not only the best pilot watch aesthetics but also powerful mechanisms that you deserve. Despite the heavy competition between other aviator watches such as those being offered by Zenith and Breitling, it is no doubt that purchasing IWC Mark XVIII is something you would not regret doing. Should you get an IWC Mark XVIII?  If you’re a fan of pilot watches in general or you tend to go for the functionalities being offered by the said timepieces, the IWC Mark XVIII is definitely the way to go. It is a good entry point to the diverse realm of IWC Pilot watches and it would also give you an idea about how dedicated IWC is in its craft and workmanship in general. Aside from this, the piece in question is a great conversation starter given its history, despite being a time-and-date-only watch. Not to mention, this watch is one of the most talked-about IWC watches in horological discussions and online forums. Final Thoughts While many assume that tool watches, specifically aviator timepieces are only meant for professionals, the IWC Mark XVII watch proves otherwise. This timepiece is the perfect example of a modern tool watch, which you can effortlessly rock at all times no matter what situation or occasion. Its stunning appearance, coupled with its amazing and cutting-edge features makes it a watch worth getting. Known as one of the groundbreaking pilot watch inventions ever unveiled by the brand, the timepiece simply demonstrates the true purpose of aviator watches and why we still need them despite the growing demands for more innovative — perhaps digitalized — watches. If you have been wanting to anchor your collection with a tool watch that you can use and abuse in the coming years, then you should definitely check out the IWC XVIII. Who knows? It might even be considered as an iconic watch in the future just like its older siblings. Interested in knowing more about IWC as well as its other fantastic offerings? Check out our reviews on the IWC Big Pilot and IWC Portofino.  Featured image from IWC’s website Other photos from IWC unless stated otherwise                      

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  4. Tudor Black Bay 41: A Guide To The Versatile Time-Only Watch

    Tudor Black Bay 41: A Guide To The Versatile Time-Only Watch

    Since its inception, Tudor has always been proving its determination and passion for excellence and premium craftsmanship by creating and producing high-quality and reliable watches. Aside from the fact that its products are built to last for decades and are made with top-notch materials and parts, all of them are also reasonably priced, given how the brand wants everyone from various walks of life to have access to their unique releases. Although often being linked to Rolex due to their connection and history together, the company has a different and enticing charm. Tudor’s line-up of watches is not only extensive and diverse but also impressive and classic. In fact, most pieces could instantly find their way to every aficionado and even casual wearer’s list of must-have watches to look out for. One of the timepieces that attest to the brand’s desire to make a name for itself is the Tudor Black Bay 41. But what exactly makes this watch special and exceptional? Hailing from the most popular collection of the company, the Tudor Black Bay, the Black Bay 41 effortlessly boasts a whole new level of sophistication and versatility, making it the perfect sports or field watch you could repeatedly wear all year round. Even though it is a time-only watch, it also has the capacity to steal everyone’s attention, all thanks to its irresistible appeal. With that being said, let us find out more about the Tudor Black Bay 41, particularly its roots, its features, and its compositions that will make a lot of you swoon and drool out of awe and admiration. A Quick Look at Tudor’s Interesting History Tudor’s roots can be traced back to 1926 when a Swiss watchmaking house called Veuve de Philippe Hüther Company registered the company’s trademark on behalf of Rolex’s founder, Hans Wilsdorf. This allowed Wilsdorf to obtain the rights to Tudor and use the name for business purposes, particularly in terms of watch manufacturing. Furthermore, it also led to the brand’s successful establishment in Geneva, Switzerland, a place where horology abundantly and significantly thrives. One of the first few pieces the label released sport a polished and rectangular-shaped case with the iconic Tudor signature on the dial. Meanwhile, few others have Rolex’s name, given how both brands come from the same mind. This is why a lot of collectors encounter confusion and difficulties when faced with the said models from the aforementioned era. A few years later, Wilsdorf took over the management and eventually owned the Tudor brand. From then on, the company focused on releasing pieces with exquisite functionalities and designs. That same period was when watches with a rose logo appeared on the markets. Symbolizing beauty and regality, the said image pertains to the invincible union of strength the models boast. After a decade, in 1946, Wilsdorf realized that it is time for the company to grow further and decided to expand the reach of the brand to a wider audience. He went on and established Montres TUDOR SA, whose primary goal is to create and manufacture timepieces both for men and women that are affordable and can fit any budget while boasting similar selected attributes and level of reliability that Rolex watches have. This is why there a lot of Tudor advertisements during the said period that show a hint of Rolex’s identity and designs. A lot of watch connoisseurs and casual wearers also like to refer to Tudor timepieces as cheaper alternatives to the expensive and glorified Rolex timepieces, given how both of them almost somehow look the same, with signatures, materials, and few features as only exceptions. Specifically, what Tudor did is to utilize the robust and infamous Rolex cases and bracelets, coupled with imported movements to craft their pieces. This is particularly evident in the Tudor Oyster collection which was released during the same decade, where the Rolex-exclusive Oyster cases were added to some of the most gorgeous and trustworthy Tudor watches. Proving its extreme dedication, the company eventually unveiled other iconic lines such as the Tudor Prince, Tudor Oyster Prince Submariner, the Tudor Oysterdate, and the Tudor Advisor. These pieces bear the new Montres Tudor logo, where the company signature and rose image were the only ones put together, without the presence of the iconic shield. Realizing that they offer so much more than being closely related to Rolex, the label started to produce cases, crowns, and bracelets on their own, which they added on the models they released during the 1980s to 2000s. However, like any other company, Tudor also faced some major hurdles during their entire 95-year run. The majority of it is related to financial and sales, which is why they decided to halt the import and selling of their products to major world markets, such as the United States during the late 1990s to early 2000s. Tudor Black Bay: How It All Began Completely embodying the popular quote “the sun will rise and we will try again,” Tudor came back stronger and better in 2009 with a major relaunch. Instead of continuing its legacy with its iconic lines, the brand decided to release new collections, which are truly breathtaking. Some of the series unveiled by the brand after its hiatus are the Tudor Grantour, Tudor Glamour, and Heritage Chrono collections. All of them bear incomparable beauty and identity, coupled with precise performance and dependability that you would simply not resist. However, what stands out the most among the company’s modern lines is the Tudor Black Bay collection, which houses the sleekest and chicest diving watches you will ever find in the market today. Unveiled in 2012 following the release of the Tudor Heritage Advisor and the Clair de Rose series, the whole Black Bay line takes inspiration from the acclaimed Submariner models the company is known for during the early 1950s and 1970s. Specifically, the watches from the line are reminiscent of the Tudor Submariner with reference numbers 7922 and 7924 as well as the dive watches made for the members of the French Naval Army in 1969. Design-wise, the first few Black Bay pieces sport humongous and oversized winding crowns, sturdy cases without crown guards, as well as an hour hand that is bigger than the rest of the luminous pointers found within the dial. While the indices are all numberless, the signature of the watch takes the cake as it is printed in a gilt manner, along with the railroad edges you can utilize for an easier timekeeping process. What’s great about the pieces is that the information found at the bottom part of the dial, just above the 6 o’clock mark, is also useful especially if you are the type of person who is very meticulous and particular with the smallest details. These texts will tell you the water-resistance level and the kind of movement the watches boast, whether it is self-winding or manual. Throughout its nine-year run, the Black Bay collection has relatively expanded its capacities for greater variety and for consumers, especially watch enthusiasts, to appreciate, recognize and rave about it more. From only having dive watches as its main offering, the line is now home to sporty and spirited chronographs and innovative and functional dual time timekeepers, which both carry supreme longevity and capabilities. What’s more is that a lot of them now come with masterful and powerful in-house movements, swaying away from the imported ETA calibers that Tudor utilized not only in the preceding Black Bay models but also in its other remarkable collections. While some may think that it is too plain and boring for the fast-paced era we are now living in, the brand still incorporated time-only pieces that embody simplicity and grace all at once. These watches give a direct ode to the typical vintage pieces lurking around legit vintage stores and secondhand online trusted e-commerce websites. One of them is the Tudor Black Bay 41, which we will discuss and explore further in this article. Aside from bearing a handsome yet alluring appearance, this timepiece has unexplored charms that deserve more praise and appreciation from the vast watch community. Tudor Black Bay 41: Your Next Go-To Time-Only Wristwatch As emphasized above, the Tudor Black Bay 41, also referred to as the Tudor Heritage Black Bay 41, the Black Bay 41, and the Tudor Black Bay Ref. 79540, is one of the fantastic and grand upgrades to the classic Black Bay models released by the brand in 2012 in an attempt to re-introduce the wonders of Tudor watches to the watch industry. First released to the market in 2017, it is known for being one of the latest additions, not just to the 32/36/41 collection but the entire Black Bay series. Not to mention, it extremely attests to the incomparable mastery, passion, and rigor the company exhibits when it comes to creating desirable, trailblazing, and robust timepieces you could proudly bring to any of your endeavors. Aside from being one of the highly sought-after merchandise from the luxury company at this present day, the watch also blends modernity and refinement effortlessly as evident in its lustrous and subtle image and head-turning overall appeal. Just by looking at this one, you will realize how simplicity is not a bad thing at all. It rather gives the piece the opportunity to shine and stand out even more even without grand ornamentations as well as jaw-dropping additional attributes. This becomes the reason why it deserves a place in any watch lover’s collection since it provides a good balance not just to any outfit but also in terms of preferences. Known as the notable successor of the Tudor Heritage Black Bay 36, which was revealed to the general public in 2016, the Black Bay 41 will fit the taste of urbane men due to its prepossessing aura and enthralling design. The large case alone takes the cake, given how it perfectly fits most wrist types without feeling heaviness at all. While it does not come with any aesthetic and visually appealing complications such as an annual calendar, a dual time function, a moon phase indicator, or a date or day display, the watch is made out of premium materials and bears strong components both in terms of the exterior blueprint and the interior mechanisms that all guarantee its usability and long life span. This also makes it a good investment for any collector out there who is looking for something that is incredibly breathtaking yet practical. Above all these, what’s great about this one is that it deviates from the typical concept of sports watches we see around today. Designed to sway away from the usual, the Black Bay 41 does not come with any rotating and unidirectional bezel at all, making it more confusing to a lot of enthusiasts whether the timepiece falls under the category of a tool watch or a dress watch. However, when inspected closely, you will realize that its mission is to offer a different vibe and charm to any wearer, making it more enticing and tempting to own. Demonstrating flexibility and versatility, the watch allows you to experience what it is like to have a piece you could bring to any gathering. Whether you are going for a casual meeting with your acquaintances or an extremely formal suit-and-tie event, the Black Bay 41 is all you need in order to spice up and complete your whole look. This is why a lot of experts usually call it an elegant sports watch. Despite the blurry line, the watch still boasts a high level of water resistance compared to usual dress timepieces and a great caliber, which makes the watch more impressive. Although often compared to the legendary Rolex Explorer due to its classic appearance, the Tudor Black Bay 41 will give you the best value for your hard-earned money, given how it embodies sophistication and robustness in all of its aspects. From its straightforward dial and its extremely polished case to the flawless bracelet design, this model could instantly pass as your next go-to everyday watch. Up Close With The Tudor Black Bay 41 With the increasing interest for Tudor models at this present day, it is no surprise that the Tudor Black Bay 41 Ref. 79540-0006 is one of the most coveted watches among the brand’s extensive lineup of watches. Despite being a time-only model, its minimalist and lavish feel is what brings the model to the top of everyone’s must-have list. If you have been pondering for quite some time now whether it is the time for you to finally purchase this lovely timepiece, you can refer to the specifications and other important details below, which will give you an idea of what Tudor Black Bay is all about and why it attains so many good reviews from dedicated watch geeks and aficionados. Case material: Stainless steel Case dimension: 41mm Movement: Mechanical, Automatic Power reserve: Approximately 38 hours Water resistance: 150m or 500ft Case Among the first things you will notice in a watch is the case. In fact, it becomes one of the major factors whether a potential wearer would give in and purchase a certain timepiece or not. With that being said, it is important that a watch’s case does not only boast a striking look but also powerful durability. The exterior of the Tudor Black Bay 41 in the M79540-0006 variation is the perfect epitome of a straightforward yet tough and beautiful case you will never see in other models. Just like what its name suggests, this model sports a case size of 41mm, which makes it an appropriate watch for men, especially those who have bigger and wider wrists. At first glance, you may think that this one is too heavy to wear due to its unusual large footprint.  However, when tried on, the watch is proportional and well-balanced after all because of how the case was delicately formed into a perfectly round shape. This becomes the reason why the watch is very comfortable to wear all day. Exhibiting a rugged yet handsome feel, the case of this model is extremely polished to the point that you can even see bits of your reflection when you place it in front of your face. Due to its satin finish, the case of the Black Bay 41 also looks smoother and neater, which gives off a very pristine and lavish feel. The absence of any rotating bezel makes it thinner and sleeker, which is perfect for professional men who like giving off impactful and remarkable first impressions to people they encounter for the very first time. What’s more is that the bezel is somehow crafted in a flat manner, which perfectly fits the figure of the symmetrical shape of the lugs. This is why women are also drawn to this sports watch, given how the watch just sits perfectly on the wrist without any unnecessary bulkiness. This characteristic somehow fits the purpose of this Black Bay model, which is to provide consumers a sports watch that is not limited to athletic pursuits only but all major life happenings in general. Just like the other members of the Black Bay collection, the case, as well as the lugs of this model, are made out of stainless steel. Despite not being so lightweight like the titanium material, stainless steel ensures that both the surface and inner parts of the Black Bay 41 are protected from any kind of moisture and corrosion, which could, later on, turn into rust. Aside from that, this material boasts a great level of strength, which is good if you are the type of person whose life revolves around commuting, wherein accidental bumps and impacts are nearly inevitable. Not to mention, stainless steel is not too burdensome on the skin, which means that you do not have to worry about getting a significant allergic reaction if you choose to go for the timepiece in question. With these alone, you can already see how the watch thrives significantly among its other competitors. It is no wonder why a lot of people get drawn to its amazing qualities and features. Crown and Water Resistance Sticking with the overall theme of all watches under the Black Bay collection, the crown of the Black Bay 41 is oversized yet very accessible to any wearer. Besides the fact that it is placed in a screw-down manner, the smooth winding crown also comes with the signature emblem of Tudor, which is lovely and enthralling at the same time. Following the shape of a rose, the logo looks exactly like the brand’s iconic symbol that first appeared on the dials Tudor watches released in the 1930s. To ensure a nice and exact fit, the watch’s crown also sports a black winding crown tube made out of anodized aluminum. Aside from the fact that it protects the watch from being damaged, it also ensures a smooth movement if in any case you want to adjust the time. Moreover, it also provides a different touch to the overall aesthetic of the model, giving wearers more reasons to admire and praise the irresistible qualities of the timepiece. Another notable characteristic of this watch is that it can withstand water pressures of up to 150 meters. This may not be considered a major feature since a lot of modern watches as well as other models from the collection like the Black Bay Chrono, the Black Bay 58, and the Black Bay GMT sport waterproofness ratings of 200 meters. However, it is still considered a good level to have, especially if you like to maintain an active and fast-paced lifestyle. While you cannot bring the watch to any major and extreme diving activities, it is still suitable for your casual trips to the pool and the beach. What’s more is that you can also use it if you want to go snorkeling while still being cautious with the water depths you are planning to plunge into. Crystal Luxury brands often rely on sapphire crystal as the main barrier for their products for many reasons. One advantage of using it is that it endorses superior rigidity to other options such as acrylic glass and mineral glass. For one, it is extremely hard for this component to attain major scratches no matter how powerful and hard the impact it experiences. Since it is made out of aluminum oxide that was directly produced by experts working in laboratories, the sapphire crystal also comes with a clear and clean look, which allows you to view the time without experiencing any difficulties at all. This makes watches that come with this kind of material suitable for those who value function and style equally. However, it is important to note that once sapphire crystal becomes entirely shattered or damaged, it will be impossible for any authorized repair personnel to give quick remedies to your timepiece. Your only option would be to replace it entirely with a new crystal. Nevertheless, you will still get the most out of your Black Bay 41 watch especially if you take good care of it frequently. Dial When it comes to the dial, the Black Bay 41 with reference number M79540-0006 exhibits an entirely vintage feel, which can make you feel like you are in the 60s era. Being a time-only watch, this one comes with only the essential functions that you will need on a daily basis. Depending on your perspective, this may be a hit-or-miss since it embodies simplicity to its fullest. Despite this, the watch will surely provide you the courage and confidence that you will need in order to face daily challenges head-on. Bringing the overall smart and versatile look of the watch together, the dial of the Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0006 is in a cool black color, while the hour and minute hands in snowflake form and sword-style sport a white-colored hue. First utilized in Tudor military watches, the snowflake hands give the watch a quirky and fun vibe albeit its robust look. The numberless hour-markers also bear the same tone, with outlines that are defined for easier distinction. Exhibiting variety, the indices of this watch are specifically printed in round, baton, and triangle shapes. The baton ones correspond to the 3 o’clock, 6 o’clock, and 9 o’clock placements, while the rest of the watch are in round form, with the exception of the 12 o’clock mark which takes the inverted triangle symbol. Giving the watch more definition, the railroad-like pattern on the outer portion of the dial is a very astonishing sight to see. The addition of plain texts with no unusual font style also makes the model less cluttered. Movement In terms of potency, the Tudor Black Bay 41 uses an automatic movement called the Caliber T600. This mechanism is a modified version of the Caliber 2824, with a few minor tweaks and modifications on the side. Aside from boasting a power reserve of around 38 hours, the movement is thoroughly protected by a hard case back, which is embellished with the signature Tudor symbol with the texts “Geneve” and “Suisse.” Bracelet Matching the case, the model in question comes with a stainless steel case with small gaps that serve as its unique element. To add, a clicking folding clasp is what ensures security on the wearer’s wrist. It may seem too boring on the outside but once released, the clasp’s body is adorned with the Tudor signature, which is the same emblem you can find on the caseback, as well as the face of the watch. For those of you who are not keen on bracelet watches, there is a leather strap option (Tudor Black Bay Ref. M7950-0007) that is extremely smooth and soft to run your palms on. Endorsing a great amount of comfort, a fabric strap is also available for purchase (Tudor Black Bay Ref. M7950-0010). This will not only amp up your clothing pieces but also accompany you significantly during your outdoor activities such as hiking and rock climbing. It is an extremely breathable material, which will make you feel as if you are not wearing a watch at all. Other Versions of the Tudor Black Bay 41 The watch we dissected above is just one of the many editions of the iconic and well-crafted Tudor Black Bay 41. As mentioned earlier, the collection is so vast that you might become too overwhelmed when asked to choose what model specifically resonates with your personality and lifestyle. While the one we reviewed above sport a black, white, and silver color scheme, there are other options that deserve their own moments of appreciation. Below are the other Tudor Black Bay 41 variations you can check out if you are not big on the typical monochrome theme. 1. Tudor Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0010 Looking for something that is extraordinary but not too daring and loud? The Tudor Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0010 should definitely go on your radar. Many of you will definitely agree that this timepiece is an actual stunner even on photos alone. What more if you actually witness its beauty in person, right? Just like the Tudor Black Bay 41 in M79540-0006 variation, the watch comes in a 41mm case made out of stainless steel. Its bezel is also gleaming which contrasts well with the black hue of the fabric strap. If you are wondering what is the difference between this watch to the classic Tudor Black Bay 41 model, well it is very obvious. You can already find it just by looking at its dial. Aside from sporting a dark blue tone, the indices are also in matte white, with some vibrant and matte coatings all over their body. They are also printed in circle, triangle, and baton patterns, which lessens the confusion of many when reading the time. In terms of the movement, the Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0010 also runs on the superb Caliber T600 automatic movement, which gives any wearer ultimate convenience. This model is perfect for those who want to be a bit adventurous in terms of their choice but do not want to go overboard. 2. Tudor Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0011 Next up, we have a piece that bears a similar vibe to the Tudor Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0010. The only difference is that the Tudor Black Bay 41 Ref. M79540-0011 is more industrial-looking, which is perfect if your style mainly revolves around manly, fierce, and classic ones. Considered the latest addition to the jaw-dropping Black Bay 41 lineup, this timepiece bears a silver-colored dial, which is entirely a sight to behold. This is due to its gorgeous and enthralling sunburst finish, which gives a gleaming effect together with the watch’s stainless steel bracelet. The grey-colored—almost ceramic—outlines of the indices and hands give the watch more character and poise. Not to mention, the minimalist and black-colored edges and texts give way to greater legibility and easier time-tracking. Just like the first-ever model, this one comes with a water resistance level of up to 150 meters. Since its exterior is also made out of sapphire crystal, you can expect that this watch will also handle impacts very well, no matter how big or small they are. Proving its amazing performance, the Tudor Black Bay in M79540-0010 also boasts a power reserve of around 38 hours, just like its predecessors. This prominent timepiece is an excellent and exceptional choice for those who want something that has a touch of finesse yet very straightforward and uncomplicated to use. Final Notes If there is a collection that sums up how Tudor continuously strives to achieve success and excellence, it is the Tudor Black Bay. It is so well-made and iconic to the point that when one mentions the brand, the Black Bay series is the one that automatically comes to mind. While many of you think that the line has already reached its peak and glory primarily because of the continuous success it experiences, the Black Bay 41 watch completely scratches that idea. Aside from bearing a good price point together with an opulent appeal, the way the model was created and designed is truly exceptional. Not to mention, the accuracy it brings to the table is top-notch despite adapting an imported movement. It is considered a conversational piece not because it comes with grand complications. Its simple time-telling function also becomes its focal selling point. The Tudor Black Bay 41 is solid proof that you do not need a fancy watch to stand out among the crowd. Apart from this, it attests to how Tudor never stops making itself known to the public as a promising luxury watch brand rather than Rolex’s sister company. With the amount of effort the label has put into producing the versatile, compelling, and fully functional Black Bay 41 model, it is never surprising to see why it is one of the current and most recommended time-only pieces today. While there isn’t any recent news regarding the developments of the whole Black Bay collection, particularly the Black Bay 32/36/41 line, we can only hope that Tudor will leave more room for their improvement. Perhaps, a few bolder color and strap choices, as well as size variations, are some of the things we can expect in the upcoming releases. Want to know more and delve deeper into Tudor’s releases and history, particularly its other collections and offerings? Make sure to read our articles about the best Tudor watches you can find in the vast market today, why the Tudor Black Bay GMT stands out, as well as how Tudor differs from its sister brand Rolex. Photos courtesy of Tudor unless stated otherwise Featured image from Tudor’s official website        

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  5. Understanding Rolex Serial Numbers: A Comprehensive Guide

    Understanding Rolex Serial Numbers: A Comprehensive Guide

    Whether you are already an expert or you are still exploring the world of watch collecting, you most likely have a must-have Rolex in mind. One of the most famous and acclaimed luxury watch brands, the company offers a variety of models, ranging from dive watches and dress watches to the most complex ones. Rolex is so well-recognized that it has become the ultimate symbol for luxury timepieces. Originating from Switzerland, the land where horology significantly thrives, Rolex takes supreme craftsmanship and creativity seriously, which is why they remain celebrated among its other competitors in its more than 116 years in the industry. However, the company’s massive popularity also has its own downsides. Due to the brand’s extreme prominence, it is no surprise that its wide range of trusted and pristine products are often counterfeited, leading to the spread and abundance of many fake Rolex watches in secondhand markets, city streets, or typical online shopping websites. From collections like the Rolex Submariner, Rolex Datejust, Rolex Day-Date and even Rolex Oyster Perpetual, most offerings by the brand are susceptible to this kind of situation. To combat this, the company continuously seeks ways to help loyal consumers and potential wearers alike to know whether they are buying the right and authentic timepieces, especially if the models they want to own are already considered vintage. One useful way to determine the authenticity of a piece from the company is to look at the Rolex serial number. Although not extremely reliable and often hidden from the naked eye, it is still considered a pretty easy way especially if you don’t have the time to bring your watch to an expert or an authorized dealer. Aside from this, the unique indicator also gives you an idea of what year a specific Rolex watch was created, as well as its estimated value in the current market. For aficionados, finding out the location of the Rolex serial number is an easy thing to do. Not to mention, a lot of them also already know its function, considering the research they allocate in every watch they choose to invest in. Yet those who are unacquainted or relatively new to the field will probably face difficulties, especially that the topic in question is quite extensive and hard to comprehend if you are not quite familiar with the historic background of the brand. This article will focus on dissecting what Rolex serial numbers are all about, particularly their importance and role in ruling out fake watches from those original ones. Moreover, we will also find out where you can find these numbers and how the brand continues to modify them to avoid unauthorized copies from lurking around the vast watchmaking realm. All About Rolex Serial Numbers As part of Rolex’s meticulous and well-planned production process, every watch that comes out from the main Manufacture is engraved with a Rolex serial number. Aside from the fact that they are completely unique to each watch, the numbers also do an incredible job in giving them easier classification and distinction. Complex as they may seem, these sets of numbers help you determine the estimated production year of a certain watch. This is also one of the reasons why they are extremely useful when buying pieces from the brand, especially if they are vintage or pre-loved Rolex.  Since the approximate age of a timepiece is vital when it comes to determining its value, Rolex serial numbers could also give you an idea of what year your Rolex watch was created, especially if you are treating most of your pieces as an investment. By using these numbers as your guide, you will be able to sell your pieces in the future smoothly and without any difficulties. To have a deeper understanding of why Rolex serial numbers are important and why they serve as a helpful guide into buying your own piece, you must know that they are generally divided into three major divisions, each with distinct formats, depending on the years the watches were produced.  Knowing and digesting all of these will also aid you in choosing which piece suits your preferences and your taste, whether you like something that increases its value over time or you are inclined to watches that came from a specific era. Rolex Sequential Serial Numbers Rolex started placing serial numbers on their products around the 1920s. These codes were imprinted in a 5-digit format and in a sequential manner, with the starting point at exactly 00,001. This system continued up to 1954 until the digits reach 999,999. Being a company that prioritizes innovation above all, Rolex wanted to incorporate tweaks in their numbering structure. They began setting the serial digits into a different arrangement during the time when they are in the middle of creating their millionth timepiece. Instead of continuing with the 7-digit format, the company chose to begin at 100,000. Whether it was produced by accident or not is not clear, given how Rolex never released an official record for their serial numbers. This sudden reboot is the main reason why there are still models from the early 1960s lurking around today that sport the same identifier as those from the 1950s. Due to the visible and noticeable inconsistency, many enthusiasts often get confused regarding the actual production year of their watches that came from the aforementioned period. Showing dedication for their loyal clientele, Rolex somehow managed to address the issue with the inclusion of date codes inside the watches’ caseback. Although hidden and can only be seen once you remove the hard exterior, the modified numbers significantly helped in differentiating pre-1954 timepieces from those that came out after the same year. Eventually, the company began adopting the 7-digit scheme from 1964 onwards. This lasted until 1987 until Rolex decided to modify the serial number system again. Sensing that watch identifiers with 8 numbers can be quite confusing to a lot of people especially those who are new to the industry, the brand decided to go for a format that is easier to recall, remember and understand. Rolex Serial Numbers with Alphabet Letters In 1987, Rolex finally publicized its number scheme, specifically after it reached the 9,999,999 point. Instead of going back to square one, the brand decided to just add one letter prior to the six-digit number. However, this does not necessarily mean that the letters also started with “A.” Sticking to its identity, Rolex used the letter “R” first and eventually proceeded with “L,” “E,” and “X.” Other letters were also used in the following years; however, there wasn’t any complete list available at the moment. We can only hope for Rolex to release a compilation in the near future. Random Rolex Serial Numbers Modern times also brought lots of major advancements to the company. Rolex decided to issue random serial numbers in late 2009, which is comprised of exactly 8 characters in a mixture of both numbers and letters. The brand said that they utilized this innovative method in order to combat the spread of many fake watches. A lot of people, especially watch lovers, also believed that it was adapted in order to keep the number of units being produced by the brand confidentially, to preserve the original quality of timepieces, and to prevent forgers from copying the blueprint of the well-crafted Rolex products. Meanwhile, others speculated that this modern system gives less privilege to secondhand Rolex sellers from taking advantage of collectors, as well as the current market value of watches. Since the serial numbers printed in all post-2009 Rolex watches do not have a prefixed year indicator, which is usually produced in a uniform manner, it has become harder for everyone to determine their exact manufacturing years.  The only reliable option you have right now is to bring the actual pieces to an authorized dealer. However, you could still get a vague idea by looking at the warranty card. While it only provides the date when the warranty was issued, you will still be able to narrow down the possible choices and answers. Where Can You Find Your Rolex Serial Number? One of the simplest ways to search for the serial number of the Rolex watch in your possession is to look at the official sales receipt, warranty card, or any proof of purchase. Since these documents usually detail all the inclusions of the watch from the parts down to the price, you can expect that it will appear somewhere in the papers. With this alone, you can already start searching for the production date and value of your timepiece. However, caution must still be exercised given that many people can easily forge papers. You must still check whether the numbers on the papers match the ones that are found in the watch itself. Rolex 1500 Serial Number Location | Photo from Money Monk on FlickrIf you do not have access to the documents anymore, you can opt to look at the watch itself, specifically its parts. Older models have serial numbers placed at their polished cases, just between the lugs. Considered handy and convenient, the characters are adjacent to the 6 o’clock position for you to locate them easily, without having the need to remove the caseback entirely. Instead, you can just set aside the bracelet in order to have a full and clearer view of the codes. While the process can be bothersome for many, given how it provides additional risks of damage not only to the watches’ crystal but also the case, lugs, and bracelet, you can still have a smooth experience by bringing them to experts and professionals, who can take out parts without any difficulties at all. Making them more accessible yet at the same time reserved due to their unconventional and unusual placement, the serial numbers with four to eight characters began appearing on the rehaut in 2005, together with the “ROLEX ROLEX ROLEX” text, while still gracing the 6 o’clock mark. A rehaut is known as the metal component inside the face of the watch that separates the dial and the crystal. You may or may not see it depending on the condition of your eyesight. Using a lamp or a pair of eyeglasses that fit your current eye grade are the best ways to read them without needing a jeweller’s assistance. In 2008, the company decided to cease the production of watches with serial numbers on the case exterior and entirely engraved codes on the inner bezel alone, since it contributes significantly to the welfare of the company. Rolex Oyster “ROLEX ROLEX ROLEX” Text Location | Photo from M. Vismara on FlickrRolex 14060 Serial Number Location | Photo from 2Intrepid on FlickrChecking the serial number of your Rolex watch can be quite tricky at first especially if you do not have prior knowledge or you did not conduct research. But once you get a hang of it, you will surely have no problems in the future when you decide to add more watches to your collection. Rolex Serial Numbers: Are they reliable? Before resorting to several charts that could help you check the value, authenticity, and manufacturing year of your timekeeper, it is important for you to know that Rolex did not officially release details regarding their serial number setup. They were only collated by seasoned collectors and other experts and members of the vast watch realm alike for the purpose of giving the general public an idea of what to expect when they finally gave in to buying a Rolex timepiece. With that being said, if you want to determine the accurate production year of your watch, it is still best to bring it to official Rolex stores as curated lists lurking online can only provide approximate dates and may not be entirely consistent at all. Additionally, as emphasized earlier, the introduction of modern serial numbers made it more impossible for casual wearers to identify the production year of a watch from Rolex. This is where the importance of genuine documents, particularly a warranty card comes in, as they are the only proof of when a watch was assembled. Rolex Warranty Card | Photo from Vincelamhub4 on FlickrHow to Check the Year your Rolex was Manufactured Using the Rolex Serial Number  Now that you have finally discovered the function of Rolex serial numbers and how you can locate them, below is a chart you can refer to from time to time to check the estimated age of a watch, especially if you have a plan on collecting both new and vintage models. This is useful to those of you who take the time to research the brand and its timepieces before actually making a decision. Keep in mind that serial numbers on the actual piece and on the verified papers must match. Otherwise, this will affect you greatly if you finally decide to let others take care of your watch. While it may not be entirely factual, this list is still very handy, considering that it already summarizes the important bits you should know before actually purchasing a Rolex watch. Production Year Rolex Serial Number  2010-Present Random 2010 G or Random + Any Code 2009 V + Any Code 2008 V or M + Any Code 2007 M or Z + Any Code 2006 D or Z + Any Code 2005 F or D + Any Code 2003–2004 F + Any Code 2002 Y or F + Any Code 2001 K or Y + Any Code 2000 P + Any Code 1999 A + Any Code 1997-1998 U or T + Any Code Summer 1995–1996 W or T + Any Code 1995 (Spring) W + Any Code 1993–1994 S + Any Code 1992 C or X + Any Code 1991 N, E or X + Any Code 1990 E or L + Any Code 1989 L + Any Code 1987–1988 R + Any Code 1986 9,290,000–9,999,999 1985 8,814,000–9,289,999 1984 8,338,000–8,813,999 1983 7,862,000–8,337,999 1982 7,338,000–7,861,999 1981 6,910,000–7,337,999 1980 6,434,000–6,909,999 1979 5,958,000–6,433,999 1978 5,958,000–6,433,999 1977 5,006,000–5,481,999 1976 4,539,000–5,005,999 1975 4,267,100–4,538,999 1974 4,004,200–4,267,099 1973 3,741,300–4,004,199 1972 3,478,400–3,741,299 1971 3,215,500–3,478,399 1970 2,952,600–3,215,499 1969 2,689,700–2,952,599 1968 2,426,800–2,689,699 1967 2,163,900–2,426,800 1966 1,871,000–2,163,899 1965 1,792,000–1,870,999 1964 1,714,000–1,791,999 1963 1,636,000–1,713,999 1962 1,558,000–1,635,999 1961 1,480,000–1,557,999 1960 1,402,000–1,479,999 1959 1,100,00–1,401,999 1957-1958 600,000–1,099,999 1956 400,000–599,999 1955 200,000–399,999 1954 100,000–200,000 1953 950,000–999,999 1952 803,800–949,999 1951 738,700–803,799 1950 673,600–738,699 1949 608,500–673,599 1948 545,400–608,499 1947 478,300–545,399 1946 413,200–478,299 1945 348,100–413,199 1944 283,000–348,099 1943 253,400–282,999 1942 223,800–253,399 1941 194,200–223,799 1940 164,600–194,199 1939 135,000–164,599 1938 117,000–134,999 1937 99,000–116,999 1936 81,000–98,999 1935 63,000–80,999 1934 45,000–62,999 1932–1933 42,680–44,999 1931 40,250–42,679 1930 37,820–40,249 1929 35,390–37,819 1928 32,960–35,389 1927 30,430–32,959 1926 28,000 – 30,429 1925 25,000 – 27,999 Can Rolex Serial Numbers Help in Authenticating your Rolex Watch?  Technically speaking, knowing the significance of Rolex serial numbers can already give you a hint of whether or not a certain piece is genuine and came directly from the brand’s Swiss factory. You can use this knowledge as a guide as you navigate your way through the world of Rolex watches. With the emergence of the Internet and other advanced technologies, it has become easier to check the validity of serial numbers online. Using one click, you can already be notified of the major red flags if there are any, especially if you are thinking of buying online, specifically from secondhand and other trusted sites.  If in any case a lot of results came out or something negative appears when you enter a certain serial number on a search platform, you should definitely watch out more as it may raise some issues in the future. You should keep in mind that counterfeit Rolex watches often carry the same serial numbers, so if a lot of models from the brand, ranging from the Rolex Submariner, Rolex Day-Date, or Rolex Daytona appear when you search for a specific set of codes, they are most likely watches produced by illegal manufacturers. However, if none shows up, then you are already good to go, considering the brand does not publicize official serial number lists for privacy and security purposes. Keep in mind that even fake manufacturers can now copy the arrangement of the serial numbers and the way they are placed on cases or inner bezels in order to trick the unacquainted. However, the majority of them are not on par with those you can see on original ones since they are usually stamped using an acid-based technology rather than a laser one. Not to mention, serial numbers on fake watches are usually unpolished, with edges looking cluttered and distracting. While sporting a serial number is already an indicator as to whether a Rolex watch directly hails from the Manufacture, it still does not guarantee legitimacy. It is still recommended to carefully inspect the serial number it came with or better yet let an authorized Rolex personnel examine the watch. A Quick Look at the Start of Rolex Rolex’s roots can be traced back to 1905, when Hans Wilsdorf, a watchmaker of German descent, decided to go to London, England to make a name in the watch manufacturing industry. He then established a small company in the same country in collaboration with his brother-in-law Alfred Davis, with aims to distribute dependable and opulent wrist-worn timepieces that could last for years — perhaps even decades — to come. To come up with products that do not only excel in designs but also performance, both Wilsdorf and Davis focused on importing Swiss-made movements made by Hermann Aegler, the son of Jean Aegler who was the mastermind behind the Bienne-based watch movement maker, Aegler SA. These mechanisms were eventually placed inside the firm and gorgeous cases made by various manufacturing companies including the Birmingham-grown firm, Dennison.  Signaling a great success ahead, these incredible watches produced by the Wilsdorf-Davis tandem became a hit among jewellers from different areas, who all had an equal opportunity to stamp their own name or their firm name on the precious dials. Realizing that his new venture has so much potential and room for improvements, Wilsdorf decided to take things up a notch by applying a trademark for the name “Rolex”. This eventually became the official designation of the brothers’ business, which brought them the fame and recognition they deserved. Moreover, the creation of the new brand title also led to the manufacturing house’s expansion. Creating the Iconic Name  The story behind the name “Rolex” is quite interesting in all ways, no matter how many times it has been discussed on several forums and blogs alike. Being an individual who did not want to settle for the usual,  Wilsdorf craved for a term that is short but effortlessly impactful and remarkable. He wanted to come up with a  name that bears a sense of distinction and grace before actually appealing for rights. After several attempts at combining alphabet letters into different unique words, Wilsdorf suddenly had a brilliant idea, while casually exploring Cheapside Street on a horse-powered omnibus, which led to the birth of the title “Rolex”. This particular event became the starting point for Rolex’s admirable legacy and heritage. Major Milestones After Establishment There are a lot of horological innovations that took place ever since Rolex was established. The majority of them were actually pioneered by the brand, which raised their status as one of the top luxury watch firms in history. One of the first few feats that Rolex had since its foundation is coming up with the first-ever timepiece for the wrist to have a Swiss Certificate of Chronometric Precision. This honor was granted to the company in 1910 by the Official Watch Rating in Bienne, Switzerland. A few years later, Rolex also attained the prestigious Class A precision certificate from the Kew Observatory. Making it more special, the award was only previously bestowed to marine chronometers until a watch from the brand suddenly became a trailblazer in the field. This alone attests to how the label is passionate when it comes to excellence and achieving utmost precision. During the middle of the First World War, the company changed its name to Rolex Watch Co. Ltd., and by 1919, Wilsdorf began moving the operations of his Manufacture from England to Geneva, Switzerland. Marking the company’s new start, it changed its name to Montres Rolex S.A. in 1920 and later on to Rolex S.A. Since then, Wilsdorf became more dedicated than ever to inventing foolproof timepieces that do not only demonstrate a high level of water resistance but also to dust and any kind of moisture. In 1926, the company released a magnificent invention called the “Oyster”, which came with a sealed case and an intricate Swiss movement.  Rolex also released the first-ever automatic caliber with a Perpetual rotor in 1931, creating a valuable trend in the whole watchmaking game. This became the inspiration and the leading predecessor among other names who offer the same kind of mechanism infused in their watches. Final Thoughts Overall, looking up the serial numbers of a Rolex watch can help you, not only in assessing whether it is authentic but also in buying the right timepiece perfect for both your wrists and for your growing collection. Furthermore, it also reveals what era a specific watch came from. Whether you prefer retro models or newer ones, conducting a serial number check will aid you in choosing what pieces will most likely increase their worth in the future. Not to mention, it will also help in determining the right value of your piece if ever you want to sell them in the future. While it often goes unappreciated because of its low dependability and the inconsistencies it comes with, a list of Rolex serial numbers will also allow you to appreciate the brand and its products even more. It will make also you realize how Rolex strives to give consumers the best service and how it continuously demonstrates its attention to detail. By understanding the concept behind Rolex serial numbers, you will certainly make wise decisions, while leading yourself towards the right path. To know more about Rolex, particularly the iconic collections that it carries, check out our articles on the 5 Most Popular Submariner Watches and the Trendiest Rolex Watches in 2020. Featured Image from Rolex Other photos from Rolex unless stated otherwise                    

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  6. Rolex Cellini Moonphase: A Guide to Rolex’s Most Elegant Dress Watch

    Rolex Cellini Moonphase: A Guide to Rolex’s Most Elegant Dress Watch

    Dress watches are wardrobe staples for a reason. People love to wear them not just during formal events but also in their everyday escapades. Other than the fact that dress watches are easy on the eyes, just like the Rolex Cellini Moonphase, these timepieces also provide a classy aesthetic that will surely never go out of style. Although often hidden from the spotlight, dress watches can pass as the ultimate everyday accessory because of their simple look. Not to mention, they look great on anyone and on any type of wrists, whether wide or slender. The slim profile and the average case sizes also add to their charms, making them the ideal go-to watches you should definitely own. Being an A-list Swiss watch company and at the forefront of luxury watches, Rolex excels in producing dress watches, along with their other types of fully-functional timepieces meant for sports and other professional pursuits. The dress watches offered by the label do not only reflect their excellent craftsmanship and extensive history, but every piece is also well-executed and made with a pure passion for excellence and creativity. Notable collections like the Rolex Day-Date and the Rolex Datejust are the perfect and popular examples of the superb classic watches being produced by the company.  Unknown to many, especially to the unacquainted,  there is another Rolex watch series for formal events that often go unappreciated and unnoticed by many watch enthusiasts and casual wearers alike. The brand calls this remarkable line the Rolex Cellini, which first came out in the 1960s, during the time when quartz-powered watches are the current trend in the world of horology.  Aside from their elegant characteristics, all timepieces under this series have distinct looks despite sporting minimalistic vibes. This is also what sets Rolex apart from many other remarkable names in the realm of timekeeping as it makes sure that any wearer would feel proud and special through its unique and ever-evolving sets of designs. The Cellini watches all deliver high-end serviceability, along with their ability to amp up any style. One particular watch that stands out among this line is called the Rolex Cellini Moonphase. Known for its trailblazing appearance, this one is armed with top-tier advances that vintage and timeless watch lovers would certainly appreciate. For instance, this model brings back a classic complication called a moonphase, while still incorporating some modern touches. This function created an opportunity for people to widely appreciate not just this particular model but all of the watches under the line. In this article, we will find out why the Rolex Cellini Moonphase deserves more than the hype it boasts and why it should be the next cult favourite. Specifically, we will have a look at its history, specifications as well as other nitty-gritty you should know before securing your very own piece. Introduction to the Rolex Cellini Simple as it may seem at first glance, Rolex Cellini’s history is actually interesting. Treated as another impressive creation of then Marketing Director of the company Rene-Paul Jeanneret, the collection was a game-changer for the whole brand for its designs are unusual to what Rolex has been producing over the years. It was something unexpected but it surely caught the attention of many. Rolex Cellini | Photo from David Munro on FlickrFrom the sporty Rolex Submariner to the water-defying Rolex Sea-Dweller, the brand has been known for marketing its products for specific purposes since the mid-1950s. Through this strategy, they were able to accumulate a huge amount of followers, making them one of the top luxury watch brands of all time. Moreover, the strategy also made them incomparable with other competing companies as they are the only ones that can pull off that kind of tactic, along with getting favourable and positive outcomes. However, Jeanneret suddenly had the idea of changing Rolex’s direction into a more diverse one. He wanted to produce another legendary invention that would cater to the needs of many, while still having top-of-the-line attributes. With his vision of developing a stylish and aesthetics-oriented watch that both men and women could rock effortlessly, the executive decided to come up with the gorgeous dress watch line, the Rolex Cellini. Launched right after the two iconic Rolex series for the bustling adventurers namely the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona and Sea-Dweller, the Rolex Cellini roster was more of like an ice-breaker from the robust and rugged tool watches that Rolex has been diligently making. Characterized by its sleek and extremely sophisticated appearance, the collection was first rolled out for the benefit of the general public in 1968 as the company’s specific line of noble dress watches. Making it more meaningful and special, it was named after highly-acclaimed 16th century Renaissance artist of Italian descent, Benvenuto Cellini, who is known for producing sculptures and masterpieces for popes and royalties, which remain celebrated until this present day. The Cellini timepieces serve as an ode to the talented goldsmith’s artistry and dedication to his craft. The collection became well-received by the public and soon became one of Rolex’s premier offerings. Despite hurdles in terms of popularity among other Rolex collections, the Cellini line remained steadfast and loyal to its mission of giving everyone a watch that would go well with any circumstance and is not limited to a single purpose only. Moreover,  all of the timepieces under this series reflect Rolex’s attention to detail and applaudable watchmaking heritage, making them the most timeless watches the brand has ever created. Despite not having a high level of water resistance or a number of complications, the Cellini line boasts a glamorous and refined look. Just by browsing the catalog, you will notice that every piece is created as if they were artworks inside a museum, adorned with subtle yet impactful details that will make every watch enthusiast drool. Another great thing about the line is that since its release, the brand started to explore many possibilities in terms of the watch’s compositions and designs. From creating pieces with unconventional shapes to producing ones that include many complications, the Geneva-based company made sure that consumers would constantly seek out their releases by unveiling features that exemplify their dedication to experimentation. A Quick Look at the First Few Notable Models of the Rolex Cellini Since its launch, the Rolex Cellini has given users the opportunity to carry the brand’s legacy in their wrists, in a form of an evoking timepiece. While it may not be as famous as other watches in Rolex’s prestigious lineup, the series still garners attention because of the uniqueness it brings to the table. Moreover, the fact that this collection does not stick with a single and permanent look makes it more exceptional among the rest. From square to round cases to incorporating self-winding or automatic calibers, the Cellini has probably used almost all of the functionalities there are in a watch. With that being said, let us now take a quick dive into the first generation of Cellini watches that remain relevant to this day. Rolex Cellini King Midas Photo from De Mesy Fine Watches on FlickrThe Rolex Cellini King Midas is one of the first Cellini models released by the brand. Named after an ancient Greek god who possesses a magic touch in his left hand that could turn anything into gold, the watch became iconic because of its unconventional yet solid structure. What’s more is that the timepiece is made from heavy and pure gold, which is why it was dedicated only for the consumption of upper-class members of the society.  Because of its hefty weight, the price of this one is on the expensive side. Considered a brainchild of Gérald Genta, a renowned jewelry designer, who also worked with some of the biggest names in the industry like Piaget, IWC, and Omega, the inspiration for the shape and overall case design of the King Midas was the Temple of Gods in Greece, also called as the Pantheon. It is important to note that the King Midas was a standalone series of the brand at first until Rolex decided to merge it to the Cellini line in order to demonstrate its flexibility and ability to adapt to the fast-changing world. The original Cellini King Midas with reference number 3580 stands out among the rest of the variations of its noble essence. Other than the fact that only around 500 pieces of this watch were produced throughout its entire 3- to 4-year run, it is also made by expert goldsmiths, who ensure that each part it comes with is well-executed. The case of the watch comes in either yellow or white gold that varies in weight and finishes like its Reference 9630 limited-edition predecessor, as well as the bracelet and deployant clasp placements. With its thin Calibre 650, this one also boasts great accuracy for its time despite being a manual-winding movement. Rolex Cellini Danaos Photo from Matt Becker on FlickrThe Rolex Cellini Danaos came to life during the 1970s when Rolex decided to put a temporary halt to their daring concepts. This timepiece instantly became a hit due to its conventional and classic look. Those people who like to keep it simple and fresh will surely love the appeal of this watch. The Cellini Danaos with reference number 4233 is simply breathtaking. It is impossible not to fall in love with this watch as it sports a strikingly clear black dial with white big hour-markers in Arabic numerals. Strictly sticking to the vintage theme, this watch comes with a 33mm case in a wide, cushion shape. It also has hands in sword-style as well as a strap that perfectly matches the color of the dial. Due to its shiny white gold case, bezel and buckle, this timepiece will certainly fit the men’s taste. However, women can also rock this one easily with its proportional case size. Rolex Cellini Prince Photo from Ryohta.O on FlickrAnother piece that took inspiration from Rolex’s past is the Rolex Cellini Prince. First released in 2005 at Baselworld, it is one of the most memorable watches from the collection mainly because of its glossy rectangular gold case and accompanying large patterned crown. Much like the indigenous Prince watches (“Doctor’s Watches”) that were unveiled in the late-1920s, the Cellini Prince also sports a sub-dial at the bottom part, which is mainly dedicated to the small-seconds function. It also has a stunning leather strap in either black or brown colour that instantly elevates the whole look of the timepiece. What’s more is that people can choose from either yellow gold, white gold, or rose gold material, demonstrating the brand’s dedication to incorporating variation. Powering the watch is a rectangular movement called the Calibre 7040. This mechanism is equipped with a Paraflex shock absorber, making the timepiece more durable than ever. Putting the streamlined look altogether, its caseback is also bare, allowing spectators to openly admire how the movement beats. Unfortunately, Rolex put a permanent stop to the Cellini Prince’s production after a decade because of its low sales. Despite this, the Cellini Prince still holds a great and rightful place within the collection. In fact, most watch enthusiasts still appreciate its beauty up until now, still regarded as a star of Haute horology discussions. When you encounter an individual selling this gem online, particularly on trusted websites, do not ever think twice about getting it for it will surely satisfy your thirst for spectacular and iconic vintage-inspired models. Birth of the Rolex Cellini Moonphase Rolex began to pour their energy towards making the Rolex Cellini watches cohesive and unified in 2014, with the release of Cellini Time, Cellini Date, and Cellini Dual Time models. Just like what their titles suggest, these pieces come in 39mm cases and have either a date display and a second timezone as their main feature. One of them, the Cellini Time edition, only features plain three hands, with no additional functions, reflecting the practices of traditional watchmaking. The revamp timepiece took the world by surprise as Rolex has been intensely focused on expanding their other lines that are more famous and more appropriate for those people who have active lifestyles. Despite this, Rolex nailed the re-launch and proceeded with marketing the three watches to a wider range of consumers. Three years later, they decided to add another show-stopping model that completely alters Rolex Cellini’s underrated reputation to a more rave-worthy one. The Rolex Cellini Moonphase, also known as the Cellini Moonphase, Rolex Moonphase, and the Cellini Moonphase reference 50535, is one of the notable upgrades of the time-only Cellini pieces back then that did not have the Oyster case that most Rolex watches have. Unveiled in 2017 at the Baselworld, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase is known for being one of the company’s latest watches. It is also considered Rolex Cellini’s newest model, which became well-loved by many due to its moonphase indicator—something that has been missing on the brand’s catalog since the 1950s. This becomes the reason why the watch always becomes the center in any horological conversations, particularly of Rolex devotees. Not to mention, the addition of such complications made the Cellini Moonphase an ultimate collector’s item for any watch lover. Rolex Cellini Moonphase | Photo from Long’s Jewelers on FlickrConsidered a direct successor of auction leaders Rolex Reference 8171 Triple Date Moonphase or “the Padellone” and Rolex Reference 6062 or “the Stelline”, which were both released during the early 1950s, the Cellini Moonphase possesses an exquisite design, along with reliable and strong components that make it a good daily watch. The whole appearance of the timepiece pays homage to the typical vintage Rolex watches we see around, particularly in vintage stores and secondhand market websites. Despite the resemblance to its predecessors due to their similar functionalities, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase has its own modernized charm and appeal that people should witness and praise more. The contemporary tweaks make the watch a good match not only to urbane millennials but people who are also already established in their respective fields. Designed to make many heads turn, the watch is simply an astonishing sight to see. Due to its versatility and the elegance it brings to the table, you surely would want to get your hands on it immediately. From its clean dial, luscious case, and bezel to the attractive strap it came with, everything about this watch will make anyone swoon. Up Close with the Rolex Cellini Moonphase Despite not being included on everyone’s radar for quite some time, Rolex Cellini came back even stronger with the release of their revamped models starting in 2014. The newest breed of the series is the Rolex Cellini Moonphase Ref. 50535, which is particularly the most coveted one today because it has a voguish and lavish feel to it. It also has a great investment value, which will definitely increase significantly over the next years due to its rare moonphase element. If you are contemplating whether you should add this piece to your growing collection, below are the important details regarding the 50535 variations of the Rolex Cellini you should take note of. Rolex Cellini Moonphase | Photo from Your Watch Hub on FlickrCase material: 18K Everose Gold Case dimension: 39mm Movement: Mechanical, Perpetual, and Automatic Water resistance: 50m Power reserve: Approximately 48 hours The Case One of the main reasons why the Rolex Cellini Moonphase is becoming a collector’s item these days is because of its stunning case. Like the other current models in the collection, this watch sports a case size of 39mm, with a slightly wide appearance, making it the most appropriate piece for any type of wrist, whether slim or stout. Because of its equal proportions, this watch is very easy and comfortable to wear throughout your daily endeavors.  Lug-to-lug, this model measures about 46.44mm, giving the watch a smooth look. Not to mention, it is also only about 13.4 in thickness, which means that you would not have a hard time fitting it under your dress shirt cuffs. The accessible crown of the Cellini Moonphase also deserves more attention. Aside from the fact that it is placed in a screw-down manner, the winding crown is also engraved with the signature emblem of the brand. Following the shape of a crown, the emblem gives the watch a noble feel. Despite not having a crown guard, the plain caseback is also screw-down and gives this model a great amount of security from any kind of moisture that could potentially enter the movement. Not to mention, the neat surface, coupled with the fluted edges is also what makes this watch even more unique. While it does not give a clear view of the watch’s movement, the caseback will make you realize that this watch is a great buy overall. What’s great about this watch is that it has a water resistance rating of 50 meters. While you can’t bring this to extreme water sports activities such as snorkeling and diving, do not fret because it is still suitable for casual swimming. This means that you can still bring this one to your beach trips but with more precautions. Indeed, you can never go wrong with this watch, given how flawless its exterior parts are. Material, Bezel, and Crystal There are endless things to admire about the Rolex Cellini Moonphase. Despite coming from an underrated collection, the watch still exceeds expectations. However, what sets the timepiece apart is that it is made out of the brand’s patented 18K Everose gold. While the other current Cellini models come also with a white gold variation, the Moonphase version is only available in Everose. Released in 2005, the material was created by Rolex in order to preserve the quality of their watches that sport a pink gold composition. It specifically combines pure gold, copper, and a hint of platinum that creates the charming pink tint that most ladies will love. However, since the color is kind of leaning towards the muted side, there is a high chance that men will also get drawn to the watch. Neatly polished in all aspects, the Everose gold does not only give the watch an irresistible appeal but also longevity. Since its composed of many elements, any wearer would not have to worry as the timepiece will surely endure slight impacts. Moreover, the exclusive pink gold alloy ensures that the watch will still look pristine — almost new — even after decades since you purchased the timepiece. When it comes to the bezel, the Cellini Moonphase takes the win because of the great pattern it exhibits. The layers in the double bezel do not only give the watch a graceful image but also make the collection distinct among the expansive Rolex lineup. The inner part of the double bezel has a perfectly round shape, while the outer edge is placed in a fluted manner. Matching the color of the lugs and caseback, the bezel is also in rose gold color, which is extremely fun to look at in several lighting conditions. As if the blueprint is not enough, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase also sports a tough sapphire crystal. Often used by luxury brands, this material made out of aluminum oxide and sports the same rigidity as the original sapphire stones. Rolex decided to go for this kind of crystal for their watches because of the superior hardness it boasts. This means that it will be difficult for this material to sustain scratches no matter how much impact it experiences. Unlike Hesalite and mineral crystal, this one is also clear, smooth, and reflective, which will not give you any hindrances in the time-keeping process especially if you are in bright or sunny areas. However, since the process of incorporating the sapphire crystal into the watches can be very meticulous, adding to the fact that the tools being used in furnishing it are quite rare to acquire, the products with this kind of material can be very expensive. But come to think of it, all will be worth it if you purchase a watch adorned with sapphire crystal especially knowing that it is heavy-duty and guarantees long life. The Dial As its name suggests, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase is packed with another complication — something that had been missing in the brand’s diverse lineup since the 1950s. This is called the moonphase and it is placed directly at the 6 o’clock position as a separate blue enamel dial with rose gold colored edges. The full moon shape is presented by a meteorite appliqué, while the new moon only has a silver-colored outline. Considered as a complication that serves a different purpose, the moonphase allows the user to determine the current phase of the 29-day lunar moon cycle. While the feature is already being utilized by other giants in the watchmaking world even up to the present day, Rolex decided to bring it back as a way to attract a wider range of consumers. Swaying away from its usual tradition of making little tweaks, the brand went all out in creating this model that fuses traditional and innovative techniques all at once. The fact that the company also made quite a bold move in reinforcing it in their most refined collection makes the watch even more interesting and special to own. Bringing the overall dainty yet smart look of the watch altogether, the Cellini Moonphase’s dial is in crisp white color, while the hour and minute hands in dauphine form and baton-style indices sport a rose gold hue. Despite being numberless, the hour markers are labeled with minute markers in 5-minute increments in the middle of their placements. Meanwhile, all of the other texts including the signature that says “ROLEX GENEVE” as well as the numbers around the circumference of the watch that serves as the date display are in black color, perfectly contrasting the strap and the feminine feel of the case. The unconventional arrangement of the dates and the minute scale that has a railroad-style layout gave the watch a retro feel to it. If you ever wonder how the date indication works, you will see a separate blue-colored hand with a crescent moon-shaped tip that changes its place depending on the current date. Despite not having luminous elements, the dial of this Rolex moonphase watch is still visible even during the night, all thanks to the beaming effect the details of the watch bring. The Movement Every guide about a Rolex watch is not complete without emphasizing the essence of the movement it utilizes. Like any other watches from the renowned company, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase 50535 has a top-tier engine. It specifically relies on the in-house Caliber 3195 automatic mechanical movement. Aside from having a power reserve of 48 hours and an analog display, the movement has 31 jewels and runs on a frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour (“vph”). If these do not convince you yet, the said core of the watch has been accurate for 122 years already, as reported by the brand itself. Moreover, it is also certified as a superlative chronometer by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (“COSC”). This honor is given to watches, which are highly precise, accurate, and can withstand the test of time. Not to mention, it has a precision rating -2/+2 seconds per day. One great update about this caliber is the greater resistance to magnets, extreme temperatures, and magnetism, all thanks to its blue Parachrom hairspring. Rolex claimed that their Parachrom hairspring is 10 times more accurate than the regular hairspring you see in other models and brands when subjected to situations that involve shocks. Overall, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase is a good watch to have especially if you are looking for something you could rely on over the next decades. The Strap While you think that the charms of the Rolex Cellini Moonphase stop at the above-mentioned features, wait until you see the strap. The band of the watch is made with authentic alligator leather in a deep tobacco color, unlike most Rolex watches that are equipped with Oyster bracelets. To add, its folding clasp is also adorned with 18K Everose gold and a crown logo that matches the beauty of the case. If ever you want to give the watch a little makeover, you also have the option to have the strap changed with an aid of an authorized expert. Rolex Cellini Moonphase Price Range If you are planning to purchase a Rolex Cellini Moonphase, you must take note that it comes with a hefty price since it is one of Rolex’s brand new models. Plus the fact that it has a rare attribute to it makes it a hard watch to covet. The typical price tag of the Cellini Moonphase is around $25,000 USD. However, this can still change because there are a lot of Rolex stores worldwide and taxes can also be a bit heavy to bear. It will not be surprising to see if this timepiece would cost a little over $30,000 USD. Compared to the other Cellini models, this is one of the most expensive timepieces included in the fascinating lineup. If you are just starting out with your watch collection, you might want to weigh down the pros and cons first before actually purchasing this watch. If you are a frequent traveller and like being outdoor most of the time, then the Cellini Moonphase might not be the one for you. However, if you are more of the laid-back type, whose life revolves around work and socializing, the Cellini Moonphase is an excellent choice. On top of this, you can always opt for the secondary market if you want to save up a few pennies and get a hold of this model immediately. There are a lot of sellers that offer these kinds of timepieces in mint condition and with a reasonable price of around $20,000 USD. However, you must still double-check if all the parts and inclusions are intact as it can be very distressing if you purchase a watch that has a lot of defects. Final Thoughts All in all, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase is the way to go if you are keen on watches that have a complication but not too overwhelming to use and look at.   Since the moonphase indication that this watch bear is considered among the best in the Rolex models, the watch makes a great addition to any collection. Besides the fact it bears an opulent poise, the Cellini Moonphase’s modern and classic design is truly excellent in all ways. Moreover, despite being the newest member of the collection, all of the features of this watch are truly admirable. It will be interesting now to see whether Rolex will release another variation of this watch in yellow gold or even white gold or if it will go against its usual norm and try another way to get enthusiasts’ attention. If they do, the Rolex Cellini Moonphase will always hold a great place in the collection’s offerings. Want to dig deeper about Rolex’s background and know about its other offerings you can opt for? Check out our articles about Why Rolex watches are so expensive as well as the best Rolex models to buy for an investment. Featured image and other photos from Rolex’s website unless otherwise noted.

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