Hodinkee Podcasts Summary (Part 4)

Episode 10 with Philippe Defour

Defour is a master watch-maker, who is a master in the industry. His ‘Simplicity’ is one of the most sought after 3 handers. He was on the jury of the GPHG. He is more familiar with only the high end segment.

We need to put the human back into watchmaking. The level of service has to step up, for instance, allow buyers to visit the watch factory and see the artisan making it. Brands try to drop the quality in order to cut costs etc, and that can be quite alarming. Young watchmakers are bored nowadays, and may not have the right mindset for the job. It is because the tasks given to them are too repetitive in nature. Hand-finishing is beautiful and is different from a CnC machine.

He still enjoys finishing a watch. Such a watch may give someone tremendous pleasure and that what keeps him going. Defour doesn’t see the industry shrinking although some brands have declined in their standards of watchmaking. Consumers are becoming more knowledgeable as well. Also, the modern generations are less likely to buy a Swiss watch because there are many other competitors.

Defour recommends a brand like Nomos, Lange and Sohne, Rolex etc. Rolex has a good quality for the price and are extremely reliable. Watches are not exactly affordable for the majority of people. Young people need to learn to wear better watches, as some are only keen on Smartwatches. The smartwatch provides a different experience to a mechanical watch.

Episode 11 with Tony Fadell

Tony is a tech guy who helped out in the creation of the iPhone, who is a die-hard watch collector. He used to wear a 5980 for an event. Throughout the years, he has collected 20 or 30 smartwatches and understand their differences and study the trends. He wants a stylish and functional watch instead of a computer. Most people don’t use the Apple watch as just for something that keeps time.

He also worked on the Ressence e-crown type 2 concept watch, which is a function to help tell the time better. The e-crown helps to set the time automatically. If you have a product where people both like and hate it, it’s fine, you can tweak the product accordingly. There is certainly a beauty of winding and setting the watch. The AP RD-2 was a hot release with awesome specs, and admired much by Tony. To me, he felt there was love and care in every aspect of the watch. Watch proportions are the key. You will need to embrace new technologies, in the past, people only carried pocket watches. He looks innovation at every level.

When smartwatches were first released, there were many executives who panicked as they saw it as a threat. Watches will have to evolve, embrace smartwatches or else you will die. JCB eventually created the best smartwatch with Tag Heuer. Tony got his first watch, a Tag, in the 90s. After that, his grandpa gave him his watch. Later, he went to buy a Panerai in Italy. After that, he was hooked on watches. There was a little community in Apple who were into mechanical watches as well. The Apple watch uses a strap-changing technology and allows people to swap straps easily. Since the talking watches, his watch collection has improved further.

He has collected some of the first Pateks in the market. One of his best watches is the Patek 2526. Is society ready to adopt new products? If no, sometimes it could be too early. Technology released to the market too soon, may not work, right thing but wrong time. The watch industry needs to get better in the watch design and production cycle.

Episode 12 with Spike Feresten

Spike is a legend in the comedy world, and is a comedy writer. Ted Gushue helped to connect Spike and Ben together. Spike loved the writing and photography from Hodinkee. He has also been on talking watches previously. Spike contacts Ben and Spike updates Ben when he needs advise on Porsches. His first watch was a Tag 2000 chronograph, which he had bought in a store. This was his first and only watch for a long time. Swatches were popular in the past, and they would climb in value, but eventually there would be a bubble. Later on, Spike used to get Heuers. He bought a 1960s Tonneau Heuer, and he simply loved it. His career involved getting some luck and breaks. Spike is wearing a 6263 PN Rolex Daytona for the show.

He managed to land some internships in the comedy space, including at Letterman. Most people don’t think that comedy writers can make a living. If you have things you are angry about, talk about that for stand-up comedy. Now, he hosts Car Matchmaker programme. Ben thinks about watches that could match the cars he drives. Ben is wearing a yellow gold 6263 PN Daytona. Spike also has a podcast with Ben, on cars and entertainment.

Spike believes in watches that are affordable, like Autodromo. For instance, another brand is Unimatic. James would like an early Explorer 2 as his grail.

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Hodinkee Podcasts Summary (Part 3)

Episode 7 with Scott Dadich

Scott works in the media industry. He was firstly the creative director at Texas Monthly and contributed to the Hodinkee magazine previously. He used to work for Wired magazine and is now with Godfrey Dadich Partners, a creative agency in California. During the show, he is wearing an Apple Watch. Vintage Rolexes are his soft spot. He is really in the deep end, and notices the intricacies of vintage Rolex. His first watch was the 1969, 1675 GMT. It can be really fun going to hike with a vintage Rolex Explorer. His gold Sub was one of his memorable purchases. A gold sports watch belies its original intention, but it doesn’t lose its appeal.

There is really something appealing about an Apple Watch, and it is largely because of its design, which has an interesting industrial design. Sneaker collecting can be really addictive and expensive. Scott does collect a few design books and art pieces as well. His top career moments include working with President Obama.

Episode 8 with Adam Scott

He is a professional golfer who has won the Masters previously. He finished 3rd in the 2018 PGA championship. Wingfoot is a historic golf club, with a rich history. Adam can’t afford to play badly even if it’s social golf. A pro who plays badly is very happy, no matter what occasion. Adam has much admiration for Tiger Woods and his massive achievements, although they are fierce competitors. It was an awesome experience winning the Masters. The Masters has one of the most appeal in terms of a golf tournament.

He is wearing a Rolex 2018 GMT Master II in two-tone Rolesor with a Root Beer bezel. Since 2001, Adam has been a Rolex ambassador and has been into vintage watches in recent years only. Rolex is definitely his kind of thing at the moment. He eventually managed to tour the Rolex factory and that completed changed his perception of the brand. Rolex usually only picks the winners from sports, so that they can wear the watch while they hold the trophy.

His favorite models are Subs and Sea-dwellers as they can be banged around. He has a Comex 16800 and the right provenance and history. Adam has a 6241 Paul Newman Daytona in his collection, and is planning his next Daytona purchase. Other things that he is interested in are furniture and chairs, surfboards etc. His wife wears some of his watches also, and is fine with his hobby. His family is golf crazy as well and introduced him to golf when he was young. The reception at home when he won the Masters was crazy.

When you’re playing good, you think you’ll never play bad. But when you’re playing bad, you don’t know when you will play good again. – Adam Scott

Episode 9 with Keegan Allen

He is an actor/photographer. There is a talking watches episode with him previously. He is wearing a 1675 Blueberry dial Rolex GMT Master II. Avoid using the watch in a pool etc. James is wearing the Tudor Black Bay GMT.

To Keegan, how the way a watch ages matters a lot. It’s hefty, but it wears extremely well on the wrist. An interesting thing about Keegan is that he wears a watch when he sleeps. He loves the ticking of the watch in his ear, like the tonal ping. He has written numerous photography books that reflects his history etc. The Hodinkee Talking watches episode has led to some strangers coming up to him and say hi.

Keegan uses his Leica M6 most of the time. His focus is definitely on street photography and stories. Using images to tell stories are simply awesome. You don’t know what you want until you touch and feel it. It was such an honour for Keegan to be on talking watches.

Watches isn’t an elitist hobby, but it’s a passion. One of his most important watches are the Patek 5164A Travel Time. Watches are one of the only main accessories that you can get as a man. If the watch hobby is not fun, don’t continue and do it. When you wear your favorite watch piece, it simply feels good. It used to be seen as tools in the past. Although Keegan has his grail, he still feels passionate about watches.

Watches can definitely outlive you, and take on a life of its own. A travel watch (GMT) suggests freedom, adventure etc. It is extremely hard to get a steel Rolex at the AD nowadays. Who you know at the AD matters. It is extremely hard to get a steel sports Rolex at the airports at the current moment. It can be scary to scratch up your gold Rolex, and one needs to be careful with it.

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Hodinkee Podcasts Summary (Part 2)

Episode 4 with Om Malik

He is a partner at True Ventures, a Venture Cap firm. He is wearing a beautiful Grand Seiko SBGR301. He and Ben went shopping in Paris and Wempe. True Ventures is one of Hodinkee’s biggest investors. Om does not appreciate people talking down on others’ collections. To him, to his each own, and is it important to respect someone’s collection.

Affordable watch coverage is important. Om has watches like Grand Seiko and Nomos (Nomos Zurich etc). Grand Seiko is really under-rated in the industry but it is gaining prominence. Even the Seiko Presage range is outstanding. Watches are an emotional product and means more to you rather than anyone else. His preference is for smaller brands, likes Ochs Und Junior, which are incredibly innovative. People who know watches will recognize Grand Seikos and realize that their finishing is outstanding. Some Swiss executives see the Grand Seiko as a threat.

Swatch did not see the Apple watch coming and should have innovated more. For the Apple watch, it’s more about its functionality and not so much about the time. The Apple watch has potentially health features. There are some who do not like quartz watches.

Quartz watches don’t have the same feel, charm, fun factor as a mechanical watch. The outstanding GS 9F Quartz, Longines VHP watch is something to aim for. Dismissing quartz watches is what some watch guys do. There is a certain pseudo-intellectualism in the watch community, which is to show off something that you know, even though you don’t know much. The pursuit of watches can be incredibly rewarding.

Om bought a Moser. It can be fun to save a bit every day before buying a watch. Do your watches bring joy to you? If no, please stop. The line between collecting and hoarding is very thin.

Om is working on a book of photos actually. He aims to slow down time by going on long photography trips. Hodinkee provides the platform for people to engage in their watch fanaticism. It gives people networking opportunities etc. Many of the employees working in Hodinkee really loves it. The Hodinkee meetups are heavily oversubscribed and provide so much joy to people who attend. Om loves PSM (Speake Marin) watches. Ben places a lot of emphasis on the dial, more than the case, like his Patek 2526, his Eberhard chronograph.

When you buy watches, you need to wear them, and not simply keep them in a safe. Watches need air. If you wear it often, price-per-wear definitely reduces a lot. Most people end up acquiring things for no reason. For everything that you buy, think about its happiness quotient? What is the happiness that the object can bring? Never live your life based on what others think. Remember that happiness definitely comes first.

 

Episode 5 with Eric Ku

Eric is well respected watch dealer/collector in the industry. He is the guy to go to for vintage watches. He is wearing a Patek 3939, which is an enamel dial, minute repeater tourbillion. Since young, he had a fascination with mechanical watches.

In the 1990s, the Daytonas and Explorers grew in popularity. In the past, arbitrage for Rolex Explorers could be done. His first vintage was a Red Sub, in 1998. In his early days, he made some mistakes, but gradually he started learning from his mistakes. Watch knowledge and nomenclature was not documented on the Internet yet. Dealers will try to push the prices on something if they find something rare, but it is the market that dictates the pricing. Five digits Rolex prices are shooting up, even though they are not rare. As time passes, there are more vintage watches that are coming up, due to them ageing. This is also known as the ‘New Vintage’. People appreciate the smaller sizes of the older Rolexes.

Many retailers are not getting good allocation of steel sport Rolexes. Prices are shooting through the roof, but will they collapse one day? Pre-own watches are getting more common nowadays. Things are cyclical and prices will drop someday. What comes up, must come down, but there might be a slight upward trend. The pool of vintage keeps shrinking, as watches get lost/damaged etc. Auction records is like navel gazing and you can compare with previous auction prices. In a way, auction prices help to reflect the enthusiasm of the product. The truth is that there are so few that can afford 7 figure watches, so the auction records don’t mean much. Prices crashed in 2007/2008. In every business, there are good and bad times. The ultra-rich class has grown a lot more.

It’s very difficult for a newbie to get into vintage watches, 1675 and 5513 as they are more than $10,000 or more. Someone like that could consider other brands, like Cartier, Universe Geneve. Nomos makes a good watch for the price. The modern Rolex is now out of reach to most people. His first watch that cost over $10,000 was a Vianney Halter Antiqua. Eric really supports independent watch-makers. He appreciates brands like Gronefield and Cartier. Cartier produces timeless designs, like the Cartier Tank Cintree. Early Cartiers are really rare and desirable. Bubblebacks were popular, but fell out of favour recently. Large watches are over-rated. There is a trend nowadays, where brands are making smaller watches.

Rolex 36mm are the best fit. Good design is always timeless. Eric recommends 34mm Rolexes from the past, for about 2 to 3k. The good thing about Rolex is that they can retain their value well. Vintage gold Rolex watches are undervalued at the moment. Two important lessons are (i) condition of the watch (buy the best version based on your budget); (ii) buy what you like. Spend time to research about what you like.

Eric is really into food and trying our excellent restaurants as well.

 

Episode 6 with Todd Snyder

He is the founder of Todd Snyder brand of clothing. Cara has worked with Todd and has provided vintage watches for them to sell. Todd’s store is to be the one stop shop for a guy. Everything in the store is really edited and curated well. You can get everything in Todd’s. There are over 2,000 books for sale in the store.

Todd got inspired and worked for Ralph Lauren eventually. He brought a few Timex, Tudor Black Bay Chrono, Tudor Ranger and a Rolex as well. Since young, he has always worked in clothing stores and with tailors. He has always been interested in how garments were made etc. If you want to be the best, work for the best. Knowing the basics of clothing is the key. Working for Ralph was a dream come true for Todd. Todd even offered to work for free just to get to work for Ralph, and it worked. His advice for kids are to ‘work hard, innovate and be nice’. If you have poor attitude, you won’t go far in life. Todd has also worked in GAP and JCrew, key American brands. Ralph always reinvents iconic fashion and created their own styling to it. Todd tries to reinvent the basics and improves on them, making them very desirable.

He is also rather big on collaborations, like with RedWing etc. Todd would love to collaborate with an interior designer/architectural firm. The Timex Marlin collaboration was a huge success. Timex is one of his favorite brands, as his Dad owned one previously. He is definitely planning some more collaborations in future.

Tudor is definitely the value for money brand, as compared to Rolex. For clothes, it is really important to start off with great basics which fit well.

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Hodinkee Podcasts Summary (Part 1)

Episode 1 with Ben Clymer

He was not interested in finance/consulting career and realized that after his role in banking. Started writing about grandfather’s watch on Tumblr and then Squarespace. It started off as a hobby. Back then, finance was the place where everyone wanted to be.

The first Hodinkee post was about the Eric Clapton’s Paul Newman Daytona. Gandhi’s watch, Einstein’s watch started coming up for sale at that time. He definitely has a flair for writing/photography and wanted to marry the two things together. The whole journey has been fun, especially meeting the press, going on press trips etc. Not many believe that one can start a career in the watch industry. The press trip by AP in 2009 was exceptional and really eye-opening, and it was really surreal. The hyper-lux world isn’t something that many are familiar with and can relate to.

Meeting Jay Z and writing for him, as well as meeting John Mayer were moments he knew that times changed and that Hodinkee was for real. Hodinkee started selling straps with vintage feel at the start. John Mayer also started writing for Hodinkee in 2012. He was also the first to be filmed for the Talking Watches series. The moment Stephen and Will joined were also massive highlights.

Hodinkee has a staff strength of 28 now, including full-time designers and engineers. In 2014, a large company offered to purchase the brand. In 2015, Watchville was launched. Other editors that were hired included Jack, Cara, John, James etc. Hodinkee’s audience is really educated and sophisticated.

Most of the time, it isn’t the best idea to get a cheap version of a certain watch model and it’s better to get the best version of a particular watch. Some of the common questions that people ask are what are the good investment pieces? Can you get me a discount on a watch? How does the name Hodinkee come about? Hodinkee means wristwatch in Czech.

Hodinkee is good at being the bridge between the hyper-lux world and reality. There could certainly be room for improvement in the watch boutique experience. As people decided to buy watches because of Hodinkee’s articles, this showed other watch brands the power of marketing. This proves that Hodinkee has plenty of might in terms of marketing and their e-commerce site. Almost all their limited editions have been sold out. Hodinkee propagated the love for vintage watch and new watches that had a vintage vibe. The ideas behind the limited editions are truly an organic process and fun. Almost all the limited editions have been great successes.

Ben’s grandfather gave him a Mark 40 Omega chronograph when he was 16, and that started Ben’s love for watches. Cars and cameras are a big thing for Ben as well. He plans to stick around to grow Hodinkee further. Success is not guaranteed even if you were successful before with a previous venture. Success is never easy.

Episode 2 with Gary Shteyngart

He wrote an article on watches for the New Yorker in 2017. His upcoming book is ‘Lake Success’. Gary is an author and watch collector and a strap tanner. His watch collection started in 2016 and he was originally from Russia. One of his first few watches is the Junghans Maxbill (Bauhaus design), Nomos. Mid 20th century was an awesome period. He grew up with an electronic Casio musical watch. His taste isn’t gaudy, but is anti-ostentatious and doesn’t want people to notice them. In the past, watches for most appeared to be too large.

The signaling of watches is very important, especially in rich cities like Singapore. It is a natural breeding ground for luxury watches. The watch community is so small, but meeting someone who is into watches is incredibly inspiring. Watches are certainly a very pricey hobby, especially if you are vintage Rolex. If you are bad at driving, a Rolex Daytona just doesn’t fit your image. Gary loves GMTs and divers. Desk divers are great as well and it helps to aspire to things. The Omega Speedmaster has a rich heritage as it has been to the Moon and is commonly known as the Moonwatch. William Gibson is one of Gary’s inspirational writers.

Gary bought a Rolex Explorer 1016, which is simply a lovely watch. He owns a 1675 GMT-Master II, and a Patek 3445. The vintage market is kind of heated, unfortunately. To him, movements are important but they are more difficult to understand, unlike dials. Seamasters with the 321 movements are super rare and desirable. The one watch man is simply a dream to many, like an aspirational goal, like a unicorn. As a matter of fact, faux-patina is not something that he fancies.

Nostalgia is a big thing in the watch industry nowadays. With a trend of nostalgia, how will brands create anything new and appealing to the market?  Oak and Oscar borrows vintage cues, but makes it modern as well.

When you own a mechanical watch, you believe in the traditional craft and the beauty of time. However, when you check the time on a phone, you are constantly distracted. It’s like physical books, there will still be a market for it. The apple watch does different things as compared to mechanical watches, and is unlikely to displace them. It probably isn’t a good idea to treat watches as investments. There are plenty of good vintage watch finds in El Paso.

Episode 3 with Rian Johnson

He directed the latest Star Wars film. Twitter is like a war. Rian is wearing a beautiful Rolex Explorer 1016 (1965) with a tropical dial (caramel colour). There is an element of engineering to screenplay. He doesn’t like writing, but he is a producer and director at times. Rian obviously prefers being the director. He bought a Speedmaster (pre-moon, 1969) when he was picked for Star Wars. Each of his watches has a story, and says a bit about particular moments of his life. Sometimes, you even know the history of the watch that you own if it’s pre-owned. Now, he has appreciated vintage watches. He wore his dad’s watch during film shooting, in order to re-connect with him as he passed away. Patek’s 3417 Amagnetic is one of his grail pieces.

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Review of the Seiko Turtle SRP779

I purchased this watch in Sep 2016 from a seller on Carousell after the purchase of my G-shock GW9400 Rangeman.

The Seiko Turtle SRP779 which I purchased was a Japanese model and is part of the Seiko Prospex line of divers and has the ‘X’ on the dial. I was always looking forward to purchase a cheap Seiko which was reliable. The blue and red bezel really makes the watch pop and give it a striking appearance. The SRP779 (44.3mm case and is 14mm thick) uses the upgraded Seiko 4R36 movement, unlike some of the other lower-end Seiko 5s. It has the iconic cushion-style case which is reminiscent of the Seiko 6309s in the past. The watch is a simple time only watch with a second hand and a rotating bezel. Seiko is a renowned brand which needs no introduction whatsoever. There are other models of this modern Turtle re-make. These include the SRP773, SRP775, SRP779 and also the Seiko Padi Turtles, Green Turtles, Zimbe Turtles etc. Seiko is also releasing a Seiko Samurai Turtle in early 2017. The K series of the same watches are slightly cheaper but are supposedly of poorer built quality.

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Seiko movements are reliable and are made in-house. The Seiko 4R36 mechanical movements (42 hour power reserve) has been around for ages and keep good time and chronometry. In addition, because they are Japanese movements, they are a lot more affordable. In fact, the 4R36s, 6R15s are comparable to Miyota movements or even Swiss ETAs. There is extensive lume on the SRP779, comparable to some of Seiko’s other divers. The watch simply glows like a torch at night! This watch is certainly an upgrade from the SKX range, which uses the 7s movement. Seiko watches are good value-for-money and aesthetically pleasing and for good reason.

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The main reason why I found it so attractive was the tool-like nature of the watch. My reasons are listed below:

The SRP779 comes in a stainless steel case in a cushion style shape. (about 48mm lug-to-lug) and a silicon Z-22 rubber strap (22mm). The rubber strap is extremely durable and supple and is extremely comfortable to wear. The metal keepers on the strap are also brushed and polished, creating a splendid visual effect. I prefer wearing the watch on the rubber strap as compared to the standard Seiko metal bracelet. The cushion shaped case sits nicely on the wrist and is well-built. I have worn the Turtle for extended periods of time and have not felt any wrist fatigue.

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The Seiko Turtle re-issue has been a great success as it closely inspired by the original Seiko 6309s. It is simply a tool watch which can be abused without the user worrying about it. The dial is largely symmetrical, other than the day-date indication at 3 o’clock. The hour markers and minute markers are shaped like broad arrows. The dial is pure black, with white fonts and markers. The Pepsi bezel is fully marked from 0 to 60. The Pepsi bezel is certainly popularized by the vintage Rolex GMT watches.

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The SRP779 is a dive watch with 200 meters water resistance and is secured by the screw-down crown. This watch can certainly be used for sports and for daily use. It will pair well with formal attire, like a suit/blazer or even t-shirts and jeans. I have worn this piece numerous times to work and I have had no trouble with it. Being 14mm tall, it might not slide under most shirt-cuffs. I would say that the watch is quite stealthy in nature due to the dull black colour on the dial and strap. The watch does not get as much wrist time as my Ball or Tudor watches as it also costs much less. The uni-directional bezel is easy to turn and there is little play in it. The bezel also aligns perfectly to the 12 o’clock mark. However, I have read reviews that some bezels might be stiff to turn and might not align perfectly too.

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The watch uses the Seiko 4R36 automatic movement, which is hand winding and has hacking capabilities. This a certainly a workhorse movement that is widely used in other Seikos like the famous Prospex range. The movement comes with a 42 hour power reserve when fully wound. However, I am not used to watches which can’t wind and have to be powered via wrist movements. Hence, this watch suits me more than the SKX range. The automatic movement cannot be seen as there is a closed caseback. The rotor is also very quiet and barely audible. The watch seems to be fairly accurate based on the brief period which I had it with me. Subsequently, I sold this watch and purchased the Seiko Turtle PADI (click here for the review), which is a special edition.

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SRP779 has Seiko’s renowned proprietary Hardlex crystal. It gives the watch greater presence and texture, evoking a vintage feel while claiming to be harder than hesalite crystal. Although not as superior to sapphire crystal in terms of scratch resistance properties, it is durable and decent enough. The stainless steel caseback is engraved with the Air Diver logo and has a brushed finish.

Overall, I am impressed by how the watch looks. I have no issues with the weight of the watch. The Seiko SRP779 is a unique entry level dive watch which is durable and can last for ages. It is something that is highly recommended and is much more affordable than Swiss watches. The watch is available in Singapore and retails for SGD 603. You may consider purchasing it online via eBay or Amazon. If you are considering an entry level dive watch, this watch might just be the one for you.

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Review of the Tudor Pelagos 25600TB (Blue dial)

Do visit NUS Horology Club’s site here for excellent information on horology in general and also new watch releases.

I purchased this watch on Friday, 11 March 2016. I surprised myself actually, given how I just purchased the JeanRichard Aeroscope Arsenal F.C. limited edition (only 250 pieces worldwide) 2 months ago. Think I really need to cut back on my watch spending. Sigh, it’s so difficult to resist the watch bug. The new Tudor Pelagos (42mm case and is 14.1mm high), released in BaselWorld 2015, really caught my eye and I have been following reviews/ video reviews on Ablogtowatch (link) and Hodinkee (link).

The Tudor Black Bay and Pelagos all draw inspiration from the vintage Tudor Submariners from the 1970s. They are modern interpretations of vintage models. I simply love the snowflake hands and diamond hour markers that is reminiscent of the past. It’s just like how Rolex submariners are known for their Mercedes hour hand. Tudor certainly has a rich heritage and is Rolex’s sister brand. In terms of quality and finish, Tudor has access to Rolex’s watch-making innovations and their technical mastery is second to none. Tudor is also a younger brand and appeals to the younger crowd. Most importantly for people with budget constraints, their price range is more accessible than Rolex.

The main reason why I found it so attractive was the technical components that came with the watch. My reasons are listed below:

The Tudor Pelagos comes in a full titanium case and bracelet and is much lighter than the Seiko Sumo SBDC001 I own (it had a stainless steel case and bracelet). It is 60% of the weight of a Sumo. Weight is an important factor as I didn’t want the watch to weigh my arm now and feel uncomfortable. The titanium is also well-brushed and has a beautiful matt finishing.

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The watch doesn’t draw attraction from others, which I like. Unlike the Rolex submariner which has a polished bezel, the Pelagos has a matt ceramic bezel. Ceramic bezels are scratch-resistant and do not develop patina over time. Hence, the Pelagos can certainly last a long time. I like how discreet the Pelagos is.

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The Tudor Pelagos is an unabashed tool watch which you can wear daily without having to worry about it one bit. Back in the day, people wore dive watches and not dive computers and the Tudor certainly serves that function. It does what it does best, which is to be reliable and a tool which you can bang around.

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Tudor used its first in-house movement in the Pelagos, the MT5612. The same movement can also be found in the Tudor North Flag, also released in BaselWorld 2015. It is great to see Tudor moving in-house and developing their own movements. That will certainly enhance their brand value in the near future. In addition, the MT5612 movement has an outstanding 70 hour power reserve, even more than the calibre 3135 on the current Rolex submariners. An ETA movement is good (found in the 2013 Pelagos model) but an in-house movement brings the watch a notch up.

The blue dial on the Pelagos 25600TB is highly attractive. The watch is also available on the black dial, but I prefer blue as it is more playful. It is generally difficult to get the hue of blue right but Tudor has aced it. Although it is not a sunburst dial and doesn’t have varied contrast under sunlight, the blue shade still looks different under natural/artificial lighting. This certainly provides texture and makes the watch feel ‘alive’.

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The Pelagos has an amazing 500 meters water resistance, which is really an overkill as recreational divers can’t usually dive beyond 40 meters. However, this is a hallmark of luxury, which is to have something you don’t necessarily need but is good to have. It also has a helium escape valve, which allows for helium to escape at deep depths in order to prevent the sapphire crystal from cracking. This is reminiscent of the expensive Rolex divers like the Rolex Sea Dweller.

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The Pelagos has an outstanding bracelet with clasp. It has both micro-adjust and a dive suit extension. In addition, the Pelagos also comes with a rubber strap, which makes it even more value-for-money. The micro-adjust is certainly comparable to the glide-lock on the Rolex Oyster bracelet. The clasp shuts well and is extremely comfortable on the wrist. A new feature on the bracelet is that it is spring-loaded, allowing for expansion of your wrist even in warm weather. As it is light, sometimes, you won’t even realize the watch is on you.

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The Tudor Pelagos has incredible lume. It’s like nothing I ever seen before. Seiko Lumi-brite is outstanding, but the whole bezel on the Pelagos lights up like a torch. It is an engineering feat to be able to insert Super-Luminova into the tiny crevices of the matt ceramic bezel. It is such a beauty to look at night especially after charging it under sunlight. Not even Rolex has made their bezel light up yet. I look at my Pelagos every night and am still amazed by the lume. Let’s hope that it will stay that way for many years to come.

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Overall, the Tudor Pelagos is an outstanding value-for-money tool watch with many technical features. Do consider getting it. It retails in SG for about 6k before discount. You can buy a pre-owned for maybe around 5k at the moment. It’s certainly huge bang-for-buck and you will not regret getting it.

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