But is the Jubilee bracelet right for a practical instrument watch?
It was easily one of the two most talked-about new watches at Baselworld 2018. Finally, there is once again a Pepsi-bezel GMT-Master in steel. Here it was at long last: the Pepsi GMT in its purest form, in steel, as God and Hans Wilsdorf intended. The degree to which the watch evoked emotion among Rolex enthusiasts is understandable – the distinctive red and blue bezel has been the signature element of the GMT-Master ever since the release of the very first model, reference 6542, in 1955, although it's not clear who was the first to call it a "Pepsi" bezel. It's entirely possible, though, that someone made the connection in 1955; the Pepsi logo has gone through many changes since the soda was introduced as "Brad's Drink" in 1893 (the name was changed to Pepsi just a few years later) but it's incorporated red, white, and blue since 1950.
The reference 16710 GMT-Master II.
The last Pepsi GMT reference in steel, with an anodized aluminium bezel, was the reference 16710, although, in 2014 we got a white gold Pepsi GMT. This had the interesting effect of satisfying the initial desire amongst Rolex fans for the return of the Pepsi but also, it fanned the flames of yearning for a steel Pepsi even higher.
Now, there is nothing wrong with white gold, but of course, a lot of folks feel that precious metal Rolex watches are a bit of a sideshow to Rolex watches as durable, accurate, and reliable technical watches, and a steel Pepsi GMT-Master II has been sorely missed. The new model is everything everyone's been wishing for in a Pepsi GMT-Master, but of course, with some updates from the last aluminium-bezel version – some obvious, and some less immediately obvious.
We looked at the major differences between the last steel Pepsi and the new white gold model back in 2015, but it's worth reviewing one more time in the context of the new steel model, especially as there are technical updates to the new steel Pepsi over the white gold version. First of all, of course the new model has the Cerachrom Pepsi bezel that debuted on the white gold model in 2014, which offers quite a bit technically vs. the aluminium bezel – it's for all intents and purposes scratchproof, and the colours won't fade over time.
It's wider than the old bezel and doesn't have its mid-20th-century anachronistic charm – the anodized aluminium bezel, after all, has been around since 1959 – but as with most of the changes Rolex makes to existing models, it's unquestionably a better choice from a technical materials standpoint.
However, the even bigger news is that the new steel Pepsi uses the latest version of the GMT movement: caliber 3285, which replaces the cal. 3186 used in the last aluminum bezel version (and which is still in use in other GMT-Master II watches, including the white gold Pepsi ref. 116719BLRO). The caliber 3285 uses the combination of the Chronergy escapement and Parachrom balance spring which was first rolled out in the Day-Date in 2015.
Among the advantages of the Chronergy escapement are an improved lever geometry and skeletonized escape wheel for better efficiency, as well as the use of a non-magnetic nickel-phosphorus alloy for both parts. In addition to better resistance to magnetism, the greater efficiency of the escapement produces a significantly longer power reserve: while the 3186 has a 48-hour running time, the 3285 offers 70 hours. In terms of accuracy, however, both movements are controlled to the same standard: ± 2 seconds per day, so unless you're in the habit of leaving your watch on the nightstand over the weekend you will probably not notice any difference between the two movements in actual use.
The Chronergy escapement, first seen in 2015.
Of course, the other big difference between the new steel GMT-Master II and previous models – and one which will be for owners far more noticeable than the movement – is the Jubilee bracelet. (This is the first appearance of a Jubilee on a Cerachrom bezel GMT-Master II, although of course, it can be found as a period-correct bracelet on many vintage models).
The Jubilee bracelet is an interesting piece of Rolex history on its own, even apart from the GMT-Master/GMT-Master II watches. It was introduced by Rolex in 1945, on the Datejust (1945 was the 40th anniversary of the founding of the company in 1905 as Wilsdorf and Davis; a 40th wedding anniversary is the Ruby Jubilee). The Jubilee bracelet was also the very first in-house Rolex bracelet, the company had formerly relied on Gay Frères, the company was finally acquired by Rolex in 1998.
The Jubilee bracelet on a Pepsi-bezel GMT (or on any GMT, probably) is the single most divisive element of the watch. Like all modern Rolex bracelets, it's a beautifully engineered piece of gear, with the best-in-class fit and finishes. However, it's also a bit more ornamental than an Oyster bracelet, and it would seem that the relative sobriety of the GMT-Master II ought to call for the more austere look of the Oyster. It's not really a comfort issue – the Jubilee bracelet should theoretically offer better conformance to the shape of the wrist, thanks to the smaller links but as anyone who's worn a modern Oyster bracelet will tell you, they take a back seat to no one in terms of ease of adjustment and general wearability. So why offer the steel Pepsi GMT II on a Jubilee bracelet only – and moreover, one that cannot be swapped out for an Oyster bracelet?
Generally speaking, trying to mind-read with Rolex is like trying to intrude, unbidden, into the inner thoughts of a Cerebro-equipped Dr. Xavier, but the most obvious possible reason is to visually distinguish the steel model from the white gold model. The two would otherwise be rather difficult to tell apart (at least, for anyone other than a seasoned white-gold spotter) but the Jubilee bracelet is an instant indication that what you've got on is the steel version. As the steel version may very well be much harder to find than the white gold, this is apt to make the Jubilee bracelet an attractive choice for prospective owners, who will likely be pleased as Punch to be able to instantly signal that they've got such a relatively exclusive Rolex. Though in the abstract one might prefer the Oyster bracelet more, so to speak, ideologically pure, I have very sincere doubts as to whether the Jubilee will hurt sales of the steel Pepsi GMT II one iota.
One of the most interesting aspects of Rolex, at this particular point in the company's history, is that while vintage Rolex is a highly profitable commercial juggernaut for the auction houses and vintage watch dealers (for various reasons, which I won't go into here) Rolex is now making, from a technical perspective, by far the best watches it has ever made (at its price point, it's making some of the best watches, from a technical perspective, that anyone is making). Vintage Rolex is certainly a sentimental favorite but from a practical standpoint, unless you are deeply wedded to the best and most authentic possible expression of a mid-century aesthetic, there is no choice at all between vintage and modern. As a matter of fact, even if you are deeply wedded to the mid-century aesthetic, modern Rolex watches aren't very far from their roots.
Now naturally people buy vintage Rolex for different reasons than modern (somewhat; some of the reasons are surprisingly similar, probably much more so than partisans on either side would want to admit) and there is a certain depth of feeling, to put it mildly, about the scarcity of some modern Rolex watches. There is however a certain depth of feeling, increasingly, about the growing price/value ratio for vintage Rolex watches and if you want something that just works and looks good doing it, you can one-and-done more easily with modern Rolex than with an awful lot of other brands.
Originally posted by Hoodinkee Here: Pepsi-GMT
WARNING: THIS POST HAS A MORE THAN AVERAGE LEVEL OF LUMINANCE. YOU ARE ADVISED TO WEAR YOUR SUNGLASSES.
Cristiano Ronaldo makes millions and millions PER YEAR - literally, he does not know where to put all the money he makes. So, he buys some pretty extravagant watches, with a taste for the most glam. Something that goes far beyond the mere technical excellence, and comes into the area of obstentating wealth.
Not that I have any kind of issue about that: just not my style.
I am not sure that this was worn at the specified event, as the video I have watched is not very clear (even if Cristiano tries in every way to make the watch he is wearing very evident all the same - watch the video and you will notice it) but one watch that has recently drawn lots of attention regarding CR7 is the one you can see below:
Lying under the diamonds (424, to be exact) and rubies should be a Jacob & Co. Caviar, and its worth is around $1.5 million.
So, as I have already sacrified my eyes for you looking at all this light, now it is time to get back to some serious horology business.
Apart from this blingy timepiece, which might rank as the flashiest one in his arsenal, he has been spotted wearing countless others which would make any watch aficionado drool.
Here the football star was wearing a Carrera Mikrotourbillon S
The Mikrotourbillon S features two tourbillons, one for the conventional regulation of the time and the other for driving the chronograph escapement. The escapement of the chronograph vibrates at 360,000 vibrations per hour (50hz) and its tourbillon rotates once every 5 seconds!
This makes this exceptional chronograph able to record the 1/100th of a second, mechanically. It is a $180,000 watch.
Here our hero is shown wearing a Richard Mille, possibly an RM11 NTPT Carbon Rose Gold Romain Grosjean Lotus F1 Flyback Chronograph - a $300,000 watch, in this case.
So, as you can see, he is not just a random wearer of bling-bling. Cristiano also shows appreciation to less flashy timepieces which have important horological qualities. When not in public events, Ronaldo has been seen wearing other less important timepieces as well, like the Rolex Daytona.
And the Rolex Skydweller.
Another maison that graces Ronaldo’s wrist is TAG Heuer. Apart from the beautiful Mikrotourbillon S, above, he wears also something more affordable, like the Grand Carrera he co-authored with the brand (remember, this guy has lots of sponsorship/ambassadorship agreements. He wears in official events and photos what his sponsors provide him. That’s how it goes).
Last but not least, what looks like a nice Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon.
Between the companies that Cristiano Ronaldo was an ambassador for in recent times, we can name:
CR7 Cristiano Ronaldo Luxury Underwear
CR7 Cristiano Ronaldo Footwear
CR7 Cristiano Ronaldo Blankets
Cristiano Ronaldo Legacy
Pestana Hotel Group
Clear – Zero Dandruff. Nothing to Hide
Save the Children
This is not a man: he’s a walking billboard!
So in the end: what you see in public events, in the case of VIPs like CR7, is dictated by commercial agreements. Most possibly, the watch he wears then are not his but are just worn for the occasion. To show the kind of watch he effectively owns, we should make reference to “stolen” pics.
We might even find out that he privately wears a Seiko 5!
Actually, they aren’t and they weren’t. They came to Switzerland from somewhere else.
Just to tell you something, the two founders of the best known Swiss Maison, Patek Philippe, were a Pole and a French. And before Philippe, the company was founded by ‎Antoni Patek‎ and ‎Franciszek Czapek‎ (who was Czech).
The majority of the watchmakers who have revolutionized the watchmaking industry were foreign immigrants who found in Switzerland the right place to live and work.
The first influx of them happened during the religious persecutions of 1500 and 1600. Lots of Huguenots came into Switzerland because of this, and settled in the French part of Switzerland, like Pierre LeCoultre. His son built a church, and a village grew around the building - the village of Le Sentier, where the company is headquartered even today.
The same happened with people coming from the region around Alsace and Lorraine. If you happen to make a cursory search about the history of the Swiss brands, you would find lots of surnames like Ditesheim and similar, which reveal this ancestry.
Also, a large group of them had Jewish roots - and Switzerland was a sort of a safe haven for them all - and came from all around Europe, especially the East.
As for innovations, lots of technical innovations in horology came from outside Switzerland, and precisely from England and France. The English watchmakers were far superior to Swiss back then - watches coming from Switzerland were considered as second or third choice, technically. Thomas Mudge invented the lever escapement (what later became known as the Swiss lever, ironically). Just look at the innovations British watchmakers brought into horology:
And think about France. Remember names like Lepine first and Breguet, after. They were French. And Roskopf, the inventor of the Proletarian Watch, who contributed immensely to the diffusion of watches worldwide came from Alsace.
What was peculiar is the sort of welcoming environment Switzerland provided to watchmakers.
Being fiercely independent and equalitarian, Switzerland became the place to be. And innovative technicians, who were seen as suspicious in other countries, flocked there to conduct their lives and work on their chosen fields. So, the Swiss horology grew bit by bit, as people set up small labs to manufacture watch parts, and in time, these labs grew and became workshops, and then small industries.
And despite what has happened in the Seventies with the quartz crisis, the Swiss industry has recovered and attracts - because of this longstanding network and tradition - the best talents worldwide.
And they flock to Switzerland because it is the place to be, both for the status and the easiness of doing their work.
Kari Voutilainen is Finnish. The talented Rexhep Rexhepi is Albanian. Giulio Papi, of Renaud & Papi, is Italian. The McGonigle brothers are Irish, Stephen Forsey and Peter Speake-Marin are British.
The grandfather of Swiss watch design, Gerald Genta himself, came from an Italian family.
You can see Gerald above, with three of the watches he has designed - the Nautilus, the Royal Oak and the Polerouter.
So, despite everything, good watchmaking comes from Switzerland, but good watchmakers go to Switzerland. Which seems ironical, but it is the truth.
The Swiss watchmaking industry has a fascinating history, which tells us that it would be almost nothing without the creativity of the people who came there. And it had a couple of remarkable strokes of luck during its centuries-old history. If things had played a bit differently, the UK would have been the center of the horological world of today.
When Piaget launched their Polo S-collection, it was the reintroduction of stainless steel in their men’s collection after the Upstream. Earlier this year the brand expanded the number of styles that the watch is available in, now introducing precious metal cases, as well as leather straps.
In all honesty, we were immediately taken by the rose gold version of the Polo S Chronograph, with its blue strap. While the stainless steel version is undeniably more sportive, it is this version that takes us back to the times of the very first Piaget Polo: a watch for the who-is-who in the world of the rich and famous. It has a profound luxurious look and feel to it, which is presented in that typical Piaget-style, starting with the unique shape of the case.
Cushion shapes are rarely used in watchmaking, let alone watches that represent the more sportive side. A pity, as Piaget proofs with the Polo S, as it can look absolutely stunning. Especially the difference in texture between the dial itself and the subdials for the minute and hour counter is stunning. Piaget frames them with a slight gold rim, which adds to the appeal. The watch lacks a running seconds, and that makes it actually chicer, although always ready for action.
This is also thanks to its movement: caliber 1160P, a self-winding movement that is made in-house by Piaget. The oscillating weight features the brand’s coat of arms and can be admired through the glass back. It is also the robust construction of the back which further confirms the sportive pedigree of the Polo S Chronograph. A watch that can handle the fast pace of life, but makes a point to look good while doing so!
The Boy.Friend watch, first introduced in 2015, is, in our opinion, one of the most successful contributions to the field of luxury timepieces in recent times.
Created for those who appreciate timeless refinement, yet follow their own paths when it comes to fashion, its target group is mainly women who dare to combine a high-end timepiece – be it a watch aimed at men or women – with a casual look such as an oversized shirt, ankle boots, and a cool pair of jeans.
I feel that the Chanel Boy.Friend perfectly embodies the spirit of the great Coco Chanel, who had a penchant for masculine fabrics and cuts.
To this day, the marque follows the adages of the legendary founder of the Parisian fashion brand – which includes sayings like “simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance” and “fashion fades, only style remains,” proving them true.
Timeless refinement distinguishes its signature clean lines inspired by the octagonal design of the Première watch, Chanel’s first timepiece from 1987.
Like the Première, it takes its beveled lines from the stopper of the Chanel No. 5 perfume bottle in turn inspired by the city of love and lights’ famous Place Vendôme.
Speaking of love and light, these two words seem to characterize the personality of the new Boy.Friend Skeleton unveiled at Baselworld 2018: enhancing the line with not only its third manufacture movement – aptly named Caliber 3 – a horological statement by itself, and a superbly skeletonized one at that, indicates how dear this collection is to Chanel.
Chanel Caliber 3: a tribute to love and light
Manually-wound Caliber 3, comprising 114 components, has been three years in the making. Indicating “just” the hours and minutes, it beats at a contemporary 4 Hz and boasts a 55-hour power reserve. So much for the bare technical features.
The beige gold-plated hands glide through their rounds above the dark-colored movement.
The result is breathtaking, proving another of Coco Chanel’s sayings, “A girl should be two things: classy and fabulous.” The Boy.Friend watch certainly is.
It's also planning to give customers the option to buy its other watches with cryptocurrencies.
Hublot has launched a new luxury watch under its Big Bang line that's not quite like any of its other models. You can't pay for it with cash or even an AMEX Black Card -- you can only purchase it online using Bitcoin. It's called the Meca-10 P2P, and it was designed for the cryptocurrency's 10th year anniversary. In fact, Hublot will engrave the unique Bitcoin transaction number you used to pay for the device on the edge of its bezel before shipping it. According to Bloomberg, one Meca-10 P2P will set you back around $25,000, based on the current Bitcoin value.
However, it's not entirely clear if you'll be able to buy one even if you're a Bitcoin millionaire. Hublot is only making 210 pieces as a reference to the 21 million global Bitcoin limit, and the company told Bloomberg that it has already received over 210 orders for the device. The company has teamed up with Hong Kong company OS Limited (OSL) to perform background checks on the buyers, since every application is subject to approval. OSL will also conduct anti-money-laundering checks to ensure no bad actor is using the opportunity to turn illegally-obtained cryptocurrency into a legit luxury good.
Hublot's partnership with OSL might not end even after it's done choosing 210 applications for the Meca-10 P2P. Ricardo Guadalupe, the luxury company's CEO, told Bloomberg that Hublot is planning a second cryptocurrency-exclusive series. Further, the watchmaker might give customers the option to buy any of its watches with cryptocurrencies by the end of next year.
Everything you wanted to know about the brand's incredible chiming watches (and a few things you didn't).
As far as complications go, minute repeaters are pretty close to the top of the top. They are exceedingly complicated to make, require a great level of connoisseurship to enjoy and understand, and tend to cost rather large sums of money to obtain.
The caliber R 27 PS, which powers the ref. 5078R.
Even if you think you're not a minute repeater sort of person, these are watches that are undeniably incredible. The mechanical know-how required to engineer a caliber like what you'll find powering any one of these repeaters is truly insane, the finishing on each of the movements is staggeringly beautiful, and the romance embodied by such a non-utilitarian complication is everything many of us love about mechanical watches at large.
Watchlotto was exclusively invited to a Watches of switzerland event last week, to reveal the brand new and outstanding pieces released by Zenith SA. A watch maker passing on ancestral skills in order to forge the future. Fulfilling the destiny of a Fine Watchmaking Swiss Manufacturer consistently driven by daring, authenticity and passion since 1865.
The main focus was around the 21st century Defy LAB. Which claims to be the most accurate mechanical watch ever created.
A new oscillator representing a major innovation in the watch industry since the 1675 invention of the balance and hairsrping principle by scientist Christiaan Huygens. The 21th century Defy LAB achieves exceptional performance making it a master of mechanical precision powered into a whole new dimension.
First watch with a case (44 mm in diameter) made from Aeronith, the world’s lightest aluminium composite material.
Thankyou again to Watches of Switzerland for the invite to this luxurious event. For all our viewers stay stuned for more upcoming events.