Pink, purple and blue and purple sapphires: approx. 5.17K
Live from Las Vegas! We record while at JCK 2010. While we have lots of good stuff from the show, listen to our thoughts on the event as well as the beginning of our coverage from our expedition deep into watch territory. More cool news? Lots of the people at the brands you love listen to the Hour Time show as well!
Like a teenager, JCB loves his iPhone and Facebook. He spends a good deal of his day on his computer answering e-mails and is never apart from his phone. He honestly makes his job look easy and relaxed — sitting in a relatively unpretentious office with his wheat-field view smiling at the computer. While his job isn’t easy, he has it down to a system. He’s polished the art of running a watch brand, and the business as a whole. JCB makes sure Hublot isn’t a bloated company with lots of wastes space, time, and people. Carefully, Jean-Claude adds roles and employees when they are honestly needed, Hublot is a lean company which helps it be so agile, with highly active employees. No wonder boss Biver doesn’t need to babysit.
That company Breguet founded has operated virtually uninterrupted since its inception, but by 1999, after several ownership changes, the brand was languishing. The watches being produced were laughably overpriced and certainly not worthy of bearing the Breguet signature. What was once a premier marque, signifying exclusivity and quality, now turned out mediocre product that wasn’t of interest to connoisseurs or consumers. That’s when Nicolas Hayek, the Grand Poobah of the Swatch Group, swooped in to purchase the company and its subsidiaries with the intention of dusting off the brand and burnishing it to a modern glory.
See Sinn watches on eBay here.
Sinn 144 St Sa Automatic Chronograph Wristwatch on Bracelet
,101.00 (25 Bids)
Time Remaining: 1h 45m
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Most watches with "plongeur" used instead of diver seem to interest me. Dive watch made for Superbike champ? I can handle it. The 48mm wide titanium C-Type watch is a good looker, unique among the hard-to-fine quasi luxury dive watch crown. It is also water resistant to 300 meters. This special version has an all carbon fiber dial and a subsidiary seconds dial with a ring around it in the shape of a disc brake rotor (kind of cool). Ben's competition number 11 takes center stage on the watch dial - pushing the Paul Picot logo into a smaller space located inside of the subsidiary seconds dial.
Probably good that Panerai doesn't sell an "FU" watch in the western world as we are probably going to take it as a signal of their amusement that we are putting up with their prices. No, Panerai doesn't even care too much about the English speaking world for the time being. Richemont, and other luxury watch groups have their sights securely set on (primarily) China, and other parts of Asia, given the fact that the only excitement in watch sales to be seen now is coming from those regions of the world. Each brand is vying for the attention and respect of the Chinese consumer - who is fundamentally a different animal than that the western consumer as I understand it. I hear tales of how Chinese consumers actually understand the mechanics of watches, know the values, and have keen eyes for details. Scary stuff for some watch retailers and some brands! Actually this is good. Not that people like us are without knowledge, but we aren't exactly the "typical" watch buyer here in the states (which is why each of you needs to educate at least one person a month on the pleasure of being into expensive little machines).
Decoration Sand-blasted, drawn flanks, micro circular graining (1738 grains Ã˜ 1.50mm), chamfered and polished by hand, hand-polished sinks
Colour finish NAC
See Bulgari, Gerald Genta, and Daniel Roth watches on eBay here.
Gianni Bvlgari Enigma Ladies 18k Yellow Gold Bulgari Watch
Time Remaining: 52m
Buy It Now for only: ,195.00
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BVLGARI Aluminium Ref AL38A Stainless Steel Rubber 38mm Automatic Mens Watch
Time Remaining: 53m
Buy It Now for only: ,650.00
Buy It Now
Gerald Genta Success 18K YG G33517
Time Remaining: 1h 12m
Buy It Now for only: ,199.00
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Ladies Bulgari Bzero1 Stainless Steel BZ22S
Time Remaining: 1h 12m
Buy It Now for only: ,999.00
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Bvlgari Ipno Diamond Digital Stainless Steel Watch IP 20 S
Time Remaining: 1h 55m
Buy It Now for only: ,495.00
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Bvlgari Lvcea Automatic Ladies Watch 102497
Time Remaining: 2h 14m
Buy It Now for only: ,629.99
Buy It Now
While much of what I am explaining is a quick and dirty simplified look at the history and state of the industry, this is exactly what is happening right now. I am making it a point not to mention specific brands, but you are going to see more brand boutiques and online sales direct from brand very soon. Brand owned boutiques will take over much of the need that third party stores used address. The brand boutiques still serve an important function. Not only for inventory, but also for people who need to physically see watches and want that in-store sales and service experience. That type of need or customer request isn't outmoded, so it should still be available. Only now, it will be the brands themselves that facilitate it.
I've been in love with Seiko Spring Drive for a while. Ever since Seiko sat me down and indoctrinated on the technical and practical benefits of their innovative Spring Drive movements, I was sold. I've discussed what Spring Drive movements are at length in other articles. Though to reiterate, producing the Spring Drive movement was a long-standing goal for Seiko. It took them over two decades to do so, despite the fact that they have some pretty clever engineers over there in Japan. While I understood Spring Drive movements pretty well, I have now had the opportunity to live with Spring Drive via the Seiko SNR005 watch. So how does it feel?
Among the watch makers attending there is no one or two headliners, each of these guys is amazing at what they do. I am glad that they could all be there together for the signing of 12 Faces of Time: Horological Virtuosos. If you can't make it, you can buy the book on Amazon for a good price (below it s retail cost).
There are four dial color options - each looks pretty viable in my opinion. Though I have to say that the red and black dial versions are my favorite. The dials seem to have carbon fiber weave like textures to them. Based on the CX Swiss Military AIRFORCE 1 watch, the Hurricane is a more enthusiast orient model with a refined design. I like that most limited edition watches from the brand are beefed up version of their standard collection. "You can get this standard collection version here, but if you really want something special, I can show you the limited edition version." The last CX Swiss Military Watch I covered and reviewed was their 20,000 Feet Diver, which I thought was a excellent timepiece (and it also has a Guinness World Record title).
Here are just some images of the many different watches that MKII (MkII) offers. Each is very classic in look and feel, and reminds you of military or professional watches that you might know and love. An exciting new model this year is the MKII Kingston, which is a series of homage watches to early Rolex Submariners. Collectors will know exactly what MKII is going for.
These are great looking classy timepieces with a beautiful mechanical spirit and high, Seiko quality. Japanese in spirit, the Men's Automatic watch collection hearken back to the mid 20th century in terms of design and function, with enough modern elements to make them highly relevant for today's watch lovers. Price for the 2010 Men's Automatic watches starts at 9, but this top of the line model retails for 0.
As much as I don't like being in a country where my beloved hobby and career isn't taken as seriously as it would if I lived in Europe or Hong Kong - I am happy that in places where watches are selling well, the consumers are forcing brands to put their best stuff on the table. Panerai never made a watch with a four-leaf clover on it, but they don't have a problem making one with the Chinese character "Fu" that means good luck, or good fortune. Probably the most important "positive" character in the Chinese language as I am told. Is this the best way of telling consumers in China that "Panerai really does care about you?" I am not sure. I think enough Panerai fans will enjoy the novelty, but history tells me that Chinese consumers like western things because they are western. Panerai is seen as an Italian brand, not a Chinese one. So why is there Chinese on the dial? It is entirely possible that this tactic works wonderfully for brand fans looking for a cool new limited edition piece - but how will it work in the long term. It is part of what I call "Asianification" of watch brands. Basically where a non-Asian brand focuses their designs, sizes, limited editions, etc... on the Asian market. The result is a total removal of the character and status that made the brands popular in the first place. If people in China want to buy watches made for the Chinese market, they have loads of local options. When they buy Panerai they want an Italian watch with an Italian or Swiss movement.
You won't have to in order to check them out. If you want to view the collection of beautiful, technically interesting, high-end, and not to mention rare, Cartier manufacture movement watches, look below at a list of Cartier boutique stores near you for the dates that they will be there.
If I could go back and add an additional watch to my Top 5 watches at Baselworld 2010, it would be this new collection from Bell & Ross. Last year, one of their hottest models was the BR01-92 Instrument Heritage (that I wrote about here). It had a new (old) type of vintage aircraft cockpit dial design and a tan leather strap that looked like it was made out of baseball glove leather. People loves the pieces, and it finalized Bell & Ross's trifecta of aircraft instrument themed watches (though there will be more I am sure). While not the subject of this article entirely, I have placed an image here of the new Bell & Ross BR03-92 Heritage watch that is in the smaller 42mm wide BR03 case, as opposed to the 46mm wide BR01 case. While the BR03 Heritage was technically announced last year, this is the first time I have seen it. One change for the BR03 Heritage is that the leather strap is free from the "branding" that the BR01 Heritage watch had.