Omega Updates Constellation Gents’ Collection With New Fifth-Generation Styles

While it may not be the marque’s highest-profile model line, the Constellation series is one of Omega’s most enduring nameplates as part of the collection since 1952. The design-focused model line has always been a showcase for Omega’s chronometer movements, but the most enduring change came in 1982 when the brand introduced a distinctive, streamlined new design that has remained the Constellation’s signature look ever since. For 2020, the Omega Replica Watch Constellation Gents’ Collection introduces the fifth generation of this style, substantially refreshing the entire model line as it enters a new decade.
There are 26 new models, all sharing the same elegant case geometry. Most models are sized at a contemporary 39mm, while a few 36mm versions are also available. While different models interpret the look in stainless steel, 18k yellow gold, Omega’s own 18k Sedna rose gold, and two-tone combinations, the basic style remains the same. Major changes from the previous generation include a new polished bevel along the length of the case for added light play, along with additional polished bevels along the edges of the four signature “claws” at 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock. Replica Designer Handbags These claws have also been extensively reshaped, slimmed down to flow more smoothly down the side of the main case. The signature Constellation bezel with its etched Roman numerals has also been slimmed down and narrowed for a more streamlined profile, while the numerals themselves are redesigned in a cleaner font. All models are now also equipped with a display caseback.
The dial of the fifth generation Contellaiton Gents’ Collection comes in a wide variety of colors and finishes, but all versions receive a similar treatment to the womens’ Constellation series update in 2018. The most obvious changes show through in the hands, which are now a clean and classical alpha shape, along with newly profiled applied indices with a triangular bevel inspired by the Freedom Tower in New York City.
All models in the Constellation Gent’s Collection have now been upgraded to METAS-certified Master Chronometer status, as well, courtesy of the in-house caliber 8800 automatic movement. Featuring Omega’s unique co-axial escapement system, the caliber 8800 offers over 15,000 gauss of magnetic resistance in addition to 55 hours of power reserve. Both the movement plates and rotor are decorated with Omega’s twisting Côtes de Genève.
Depending on the model, these new Constellations are offered on either a tapering crocodile leather strap in a variety of colors or a newly redesigned semi-integrated bracelet. The distinctive center links of this bracelet have been re-profiled, while the edges of the larger links have been given polished bevels for a more refined look.
This new array of Constellation models is a major step forward for one of Omega’s most elegant and longest running lines. Pricing for the new models begins at $5,850. All 26 models are available now from Omega authorized dealers. For more information, please visit the brand’s website.


The MACH 1 case is 42mm-wide (water resistant to 100 meters), 11mm-thick, and has a 48mm lug-to-lug distance. That all translates into a very wearable, as well as

universal, size for a lot of wrists. The matte-finished cases have an industrial feel that connects with the image of something to be connected with an Air Force tool,

and the dials are thankfully very focused on utility. Rather than a lifestyle watch, Bangalore Watch Company really seemed to want to make a tool-style watch that

looks like it could be comfortably worn inside of the cockpit. A flat, AR-coated sapphire crystal over the otherwise matte dial certainly helps to maintain very good

legibility. The only polished element on the dial are parts of the small, applied Bangalore Watch Company logo.
A small detail meant to suggest the MiG 21 Type 77 jets themselves is the watch crown, which is slightly tapered and meant to look like the after-burners as part of

the jet engine system. It is a classy and subtle nod to the planes the watch collection is based on. On the rear of the watch we see a full etching of three MiG 21

Type 77 jets flying in formation, along with celebratory text meant to explain the purpose of the watch collection, in general.

Bulgari Octo Finissimo 100m Stainless Steel Hands-On

One hundred meters. On its own, not really a big deal, as it’s more or less the minimum expectation for any modern sports watch. But for Bulgari’s newly upgraded Octo Finissimo in stainless steel, this is uncharted territory — a categorical shift of sorts that places it among a totally new field of competition: the luxury sport crossover in steel. And if you’ve been keeping score, you already know that, though this white-hot category is hardly lacking for options, there are precious few truly high-end options that could compete directly with its three titans: the Royal Oak Replica Watches, the Nautilus, and the Overseas.
Now with 100 meters of water resistance, the stainless steel Octo Finissimo comes equipped with a screw-down crown, but thankfully, everything else from a visual standpoint has been entirely preserved — including the case’s wispy 5.15mm thickness. At 40mm, the Finissimo is by no means a “big” watch, but due to the broad diameter and super-wide lugs, it looks quite large. However, the thinness, short lug-to-lug length, and generous bracelet taper collectively enable it to wear far more comfortably than it looks or feels like it should — an optical illusion that’s all part of the delight of wearing the Octo. Replica Hublot
Now, it’s worth bearing mention that this isn’t the first time we’ve seen an Octo Finissimo in steel – the collection got its first entry-level case material two years ago at Baselworld, but like the rest of the Finissimo Replica Hublot watches, it came in the same all-matte finish and only 30 meters of water resistance, continuing to skate by in the “luxury sport category” on perception and aesthetics alone. To be fair, Bulgari’s entry-level Octo already had 100 meters of water resistance and could also be classified as a true sport watch, but none of those watches exhibits the incredible movements, finishing, or record-breaking thinness that characterize the Finissimo (“finest” for those looking to brush up on their Italian) collection. Ultimately, the real reason this otherwise minor detail is such a big deal is that there is a marked dearth of competition for sporty and capable watches with this degree of finishing — and the aforementioned trio that do already fit the bill remain as scarce and, consequently, difficult to obtain as ever.
Introduced this week in Dubai at LVMH’s new Watch Week summit concept, the new stainless steel variant completes the Octo Finissimo’s quartet of material offerings, which already included precious metal, ceramic, and the signature titanium around which the collection was built. Each of these offerings, including the new entry-level steel option, is fitted with Bulgari’s BVL 138, which once held the record for the world’s thinnest automatic movement. That honor now goes to Piaget, but it does little to diminish how impressive it is to now have a stainless steel luxury sport watch that’s only a hair over 5mm-thick. If you’ve been following the evolution of the Finissimo line, the BVL 138 remains something of a mechanical triumph whose specs should seem somewhat familiar by now: 21,600 vph, a 60-hour power reserve, and an off-center platinum microrotor. The whole movement also gets a healthy dose of gorgeous hand-applied perlage, complemented by Geneva stripes and polished chamfers, all of which remains a treat to behold under the exhibition caseback.
Despite being the collection’s entry-level offering, the new stainless steel variant delivers a much more “active” wrist presence than the titanium. Not only is it markedly heavier and more assertive (not a knock against titanium — some wearers just prefer the added weight), it exhibits some really dynamic brushed and polished finishes throughout the case and bracelet that catch the light from pretty much any angle, in ways that rival even the Royal Oak wearing experience. It’s a dramatic departure from the all-matte-everything approach in the Finissimo line established by the original titanium variant, and its full ceramic follow-up from last year. The vertical brushing is particularly cool, though, as in nearly every instance (like the angled case steps just beneath the bezel), it follows the physical “path” of the surface upon which it’s applied, preserving that richly angular, architectural feel throughout.
Who knows how long we’ll have to wait, but the potential for Bulgari to bring stainless steel to 2019 GPHG-winning Octo Finissimo Chronograph GMT is impossible to ignore. Rendered with the same water resistance as the three-hand variant, you’d be left with what is quite possibly the perfect travel watch, and some extremely compelling competition for the Patek Philippe “Travel Time” offerings. Hopefully, we won’t have long to dream this dream.
In the meantime, the Octo Finissimo isn’t just Bulgari’s bestselling men’s watch (and deservedly so), it’s also the brand’s fastest growing collection and one that’s quickly turning into a cornerstone for the brand, which has seemingly struggled for the better part of the last decade to figure out what to do with its ownership of the trademark Gerald Genta name. Well, they’ve managed to do this one without Genta, but the real challenge now will be to learn from their peers and exercise the modicum of restraint that Audemars Piguet never had with the Royal Oak, to keep the Octo collection fresh, innovative, and only slightly exclusive — because let’s be honest: none of us needs another waiting list. The price for the Bulgari Octo Finissimo in stainless steel on bracelet is $12,000 USD. You can learn more at watchesaustralia.co

Bangalore Watch Company MACH 1 Indian Air Force-Inspired Watches Review

The second major watch collection from India-based Bangalore Watch Company is the MACH 1, which comes in a few flavors (and first debuted on aBlogtoWatch here). The

watches are directly inspired by the brand founder’s childhood interest in the IAF (Indian Air Force), Fake Watches as well as the MiG 21 Type 77 planes which apparently were the

cornerstone of the IAF’s fighter plane arsenal for 50 years during 1963 all the way until 2013. To celebrate 50 years of the MiG 21 Type 77, Bangalore Watch Company

created this handsome and affordably priced MACH 1 collection.

The “MACH 1” names comes from the fact that the MiG 21 Type 77 was the first supersonic plane in service for the IAF. The MACH 1 comes in both “Civilian” (natural

brushed steel case) and “Aviator” (black PVD-coated steel panerai replica) flavors. Each of the watches further comes with two dial options that differ only in the style of hour

marker, which on one version uses traditional Arabic hour numerals, and on the other uses Arabic numeral minute indicators as the hour markers. Without being able to

choose one or the other dial — Bangalore Watch Company seems to simply produce both versions, allowing consumers to select which they prefer — frankly, I can’t say

which is better, as it is a matter of personal taste.


Bangalore Watch Company MACH 1 Indian Air Force-Inspired Watches Review Wrist Time Reviews

The MACH 1 is a very different style of watch when compared to the first Renaissance Automatic timepiece models which Bangalore Watch Company first released

(swisswatchonline.co.uk review here). The Renaissance Automatic watches are dressy in style, while the MACH 1 is decidedly a sports-style watch. What connects the

watches together is a relatively conservative design ethos, a focus on small details, as well as a very solid value proposition. The MACH 1 edges pricing up, but also

includes a more prestigious movement. Whereas the more affordable Renaissance Automatic watches featured a Japanese-made automatic mechanical movement (a Miyota 9000

series caliber), the MACH 1 watches feature Swiss Made Sellita SW220-1 automatic movement calibers. This is essentially the Sellita version of the Swiss ETA 2836.

The SW220 automatic movements feature the time with day and date indicator windows. Operating at 4Hz they, have a power reserve of 38 hours. While smaller brands such

as Bangalore Watch Company can struggle when their products near the $1,000 price point, including upgrades and features such as Swiss Made movements is certainly a

step in the right direction.

Bangalore Watch Company MACH 1 Indian Air Force-Inspired Watches Review Wrist Time Reviews

The MACH 1 case is 42mm-wide (water resistant to 100 meters), 11mm-thick, and has a 48mm lug-to-lug distance. That all translates into a very wearable, as well as

universal, size for a lot of wrists. The matte-finished cases have an industrial feel that connects with the image of something to be connected with an Air Force tool,

and the dials are thankfully very focused on utility. Rather than a lifestyle watch, Bangalore Watch Company really seemed to want to make a tool-style watch that

looks like it could be comfortably worn inside of the cockpit. A flat, AR-coated sapphire crystal over the otherwise matte dial certainly helps to maintain very good

legibility. The only polished element on the dial are parts of the small, applied Bangalore Watch Company logo.
A small detail meant to suggest the MiG 21 Type 77 jets themselves is the watch crown, which is slightly tapered and meant to look like the after-burners as part of

the jet engine system. It is a classy and subtle nod to the planes the watch collection is based on. On the rear of the watch we see a full etching of three MiG 21

Type 77 jets flying in formation, along with celebratory text meant to explain the purpose of the watch collection, in general.

Attached to the case are pretty decent black fabric straps. I typically love how these straps look in pictures but hate to wear them as they tend to be stiff and fray

quickly. Bangalore Watch Company was smart to select softer, and padded straps (leather lined) which are much more comfortable than straps on similarly-priced, or even

much higher-priced watches. The 22mm-wide straps also use quick-release buckles which make them easy to swap out with something else. Also note that Bangalore Watch

Company opted for bespoke steel buckles on the straps, as opposed to using standard off-the-shelf buckles that would have resulted in a cheaper look. This all goes to

the attention to detail that I stated earlier is a highlight of the brand.
What I most appreciate about the Bangalore Watch Company MACH 1 is that it is a celebratory watch (of the IAF) but created like a tool watch. It imagines itself as a

product that would have been worn by actual MiG 21 Type 77 pilots, inspired by history’s large assortment of military and professional pilot watches. The dials are

clean, the faces are legible, and the wearing experience is conservative and sensible. The aesthetic is slightly retro, but there is a fair bit of “timelessness” to

the look which should comfort those buyers wondering if they will still want to don the piece on their wrist years down the road.

As is the case with anything military-inspired, there will be those who are fiercely interested in the story that created these watches and some who will not be so

moved by them. Personally, even though I’ve reviewed countless military and aviation-inspired timepieces, the MACH 1 is the first I’ve ever reviewed that relates to

the Indian Air Force. From a collecting standpoint, I find that interesting, and for the large population of people in or from India with some nationalist flair, the

Bangalore Watch Company MACH 1 will certainly be something to consider. Don’t miss the very decent Pelican-style box that the watches arrive in. Price for the

Bangalore Watch Company MACH 1 Civilian and Aviator watch is $680 USD and $730 USD respectively

Chapter 1 Watch Hands-On With New Sales Concept

Are you ready to be an “affluendor” That is the big question Thomas Baillod — founder of Ba111od watches — has for the timepiece consumer public. His first watches, the Chapter 1 (which comes as the Chapter 1.1, 1.2, and 1.3 to start), come with a unique way of purchasing them that is a brave attempt to shake up how timepieces are sold in an ever-adjusting online marketplace economy. Replica Watch UK The good thing for collectors is that, in addition to experimenting with a new sales model, the watches themselves are fun and an excellent value.

“Affluendor” is a combination of “aficionado, influencer, and vendor.” In a world where timepiece product enthusiasts are far more responsible for sales than retailers and brands are, the concept is interesting and has a lot of merit (assuming consumers learn how it works). Visiting the Ba111od website is the best way to understand this model, but I’ll give you the basics before I delve into talking about the Chapter 1.1 watch itself. Ba111od replica breitling watches understands two fundamental points about the product purchasing economy these days. replica breitling watches Point number one is that, while sales interest might come from all over the place, online sales themselves do not need to occur across a large variety of stores. The point is that sales might benefit from being centralized even if consumers don’t all learn about or form the desire to purchase a product from the brand itself or through the same channels.
Point number two is that watch consumers are increasingly the reason that another watch consumer wants to purchase something. If seeing a watch on a friend inspires us to buy that watch, why not facilitate the transaction starting there, as opposed to elsewhere Thus, the affluendor is born.

OK, that’s all nice and good, but how does this all occur, practically speaking It happens with the sale of rights to buy the watches, as opposed to the watches themselves. Ba111od gives out a certain number of “tokens” (rights to buy, in essence) to customers who purchase a Ba111od watch — who then become affluendors. Those tokens can be given to whomever the affluendor desires — who needs the token for a right to purchase the watch.
With the token. a consumer can purchase a Ba111od watch, or even sell/give that token to someone else. Retailers can also use tokens in a way like drop-shipping can. That means a watch retailer could have a small selection of Ba111od watches in their display case, and when a customer wants one, the retailer can give them a token or do the sale right there, and Ba111od will ship the watch out to the consumer — rather than the retailer having to invest in stock. The retailer would take a lower commission than if they invested in inventory, but in theory it could work out well for all parties, given the larger implications of how internet distribution and traditional retail distribution are currently at odds with one another. A model like using tokens in this regard would ensure a more consistent shopping and pricing experience for watch consumers — a model that, that over the long term, will make for a far stronger and reliable wristwatch market.

On to the Ba111od Chapter 1 that, outside the brand’s novel concept of selling watches, is worthy of discussion unto itself. Ba111od founder Thomas Baillod was born in La Chaux-de-Fonds and comes from generations of people in the Swiss watch industry. It’s no secret that his brother works at a major watchmaking name in Geneva. It is necessary to say all this because the design of the watch comes from Europe and people who are seasoned watch experts, even though its construction is all Chinese. In fact, most of the Swiss-made watches out there have similar stories, though brands aren’t public about it.

On a very subtle level, the Ba111od Chapter 1 watch is a message from Mr. Baillod to the industry that their value propositions to consumers are all off. He wants to show them that he can do nearly what they can but in a surprisingly inexpensive fashion. Does he wish to hurt the industry he comes from with such a move? I don’t think so. Knowing Thomas, I believe his goal is to both besmirch them and also encourage them to focus on where they do offer value. The real reason to buy a Swiss watch is because of attention to detail, loads of human effort, and application of real watchmaking culture and tradition. Swiss watches, in a lot of ways, almost necessarily require a lot of parts made in Switzerland because they are often made better in Switzerland with visual results to prove it. What then is a Swiss-designed watch that uses trained eyes to get the best of Asian manufacturing? I’m not sure, but brands ranging from SevenFriday to Ba111od are examples.

For under $400, the Chapter 1.1 is a good value. The 43mm-wide polished steel case (water resistant to 30 meters) is topped with a very clear and glare-free double-domed sapphire crystal. That you can see into the dial so well and legibly is a not an insignificant deal. The case is classic in fashion but with modern contrast polishing. It isn’t a small watch, but it isn’t too large, either, and it is meant to be a frame for the highly animated mechanical movement inside it.
Styled somewhere between Breguet and Maurice Lacroix, the Chapter 1.1 is all about the double balance-wheel-based movement inside. The Chinese-made automatic movement is actually really nicely made for the price — with solid attempts to replicate traditional surface finishing, as opposed to leaving so many movement parts blatantly unfinished (as is the case in some cheap mechanical movements). The dial is displayed via a subsidiary dial for the hours and minutes, and the seconds are indicated via a traditional centrally mounted seconds hand. For me, this is like a poor man’s Arnold & Son when you take into consideration the view of the double balance wheels that are connected by a true differential system. How accurate is the movement? I don’t know; it’s not a chronometer. But I don’t think you need to reset the time more than once a week. I’m certainly happy for this price.

As it common with such watches, the case, dial, and movement are often far nicer than the strap and buckle. Ba111od does its best within a limited budget to offer a leather strap and folding metal deployant that is etched with the family chest. Those strap styles, in my opinion, are always stiff and bulky. The first thing I did to improve the wearing experience was to take off the strap and put the watch on something else. I found it was really comfortable on a NATO-style strap, actually. Note to brands wanting to make a dress-style watch: Ditch the deployant clasp. Nine out of 10 times, a simple pin buckle will be much more comfortable than an awkward (and often sharp) folding deployant clasp. I don’t care if people feel that these straps make watches look more expensive; they are not comfortable most of the time.

How do you get a Ba111od Chapter 1.1 or the other models? Well, you need to get to know an affluendor. If you don’t, then you can contact Ba111od watches, and they will actually introduce you to one via their Facebook group. Assuming you and your affluendor hit it off, you could be given your own “rights to sell a Ba111od” watch tokens along with your timepiece and see if you feel it is the future of sales for at least some niche timepiece brands.

Hublot Big Bang Integral 42mm Watch With New Integrated Bracelet

Fifteen years after the introduction of the Big Bang, Hublot just introduced the Big Bang Integral, which adds an integrated bracelet model to the collection. The Integral debuts in three variations: Titanium, as seen in this article; King Gold; and an all-black ceramic. Though the Big Bang so far hasn’t exclusively come on a strap (see this bracelet model from a few years back), we are living in the era of integrated bracelet proliferation. In fact, I’m pretty surprised it took this long for Hublot to pull a “reverse-Offshore” with the Big Bang. Fortunately, Hublot Replica Watch UK didn’t only add an integrated bracelet to the 42mm Big Bang case (arguably the most wearable one, by the way), but they also refreshed and redesigned the case.
The good? The result is a good-looking and reasonably sized watch from a collection that has long eluded a substantial group of luxury sport-watch buyers.

The bad Expect sticker shock. The titanium model you see in this article is the most affordable of the three, priced at just north of $20,000.
That said, the in-house UNICO movement stands higher than a lot people give it credit for and I encourage everyone to read our David Bredan’s review of the strap version of the 42mm Big Bang for more background information and insight. Long story short, it’s an undeniably technically impressive movement that puts many of its peers to shame. Brief stats of the HUB1280 UNICO column-wheel chronograph movement include a three-day power reserve, modular escapement, a reworked oscillating double-clutch, and flyback function. Tag Heuer Replica
Actually, keep that link from David’s review open so you have an easy reference for comparison. Hublot made some changes to the 42mm Big Bang case and dial with the Integral that are an overall marked improvement, in my opinion. The one change on the dial switches out Arabic numerals with simple indices, which I absolutely prefer. On the case, the pushers are changed back to the style from the original 2005 model. In fact, Hublot states that these rectangular pushers were the design inspiration for the bracelet through the chamfering, angles, and the alternating polished and satin finishing.
Water resistant to 100M, the sandwich-style case is changed a little bit, with the resin composite switched out for a complete titanium (or King Gold or ceramic) construction. There is black composite resin used on parts of the bezel and rubber is used around the crown. This change to the case cleans the whole design up a little, while the more sparse usage of black resin composite and rubber accentuate the aesthetic idiosyncrasies without being overbearing.
Take a look at the bracelet used on the previous iteration of the UNICO Big Bang from 2015, and this new Integral reveals an obviously stark difference in quality and finish. The chamfering and attention to detail are clearly apparent, and I applaud Hublot on creating a bracelet that looks good and is finished to a high degree while also being really comfortable to wear.
On the wrist, the Big Bang Integral is a comfortable wear that is super-lightweight in titanium. Measuring 42mm-wide and 13.45mm-thick, it’s got a lug-to-lug that’s just around 52mm. As I’ve said before, this is probably the most wearable Hublot Big Bang watch and a size that I’d like to see them expand on even more. The sleeker new case and less cluttered dial go a long way in striking a balance in attitude, something that Hublot has struggled with in the past.
The Hublot Big Bang UNICO Integral shows a brand that understands the taste of contemporary buyers more than almost any of their recent offerings. Paring down some of their more divisive and aggressive aesthetic touches just 20% or so and adding such a fantastic bracelet goes a long way. Price for the Hublot Big Bang Integral in titanium is $20,900, while the all-black ceramic comes in at $23,100, and the King Gold at $52,500. You can learn more at swisswatchonline.co.uk

Chapter 1 Watch Hands-On With New Sales Concept

Are you ready to be an “affluendor?” That is the big question Thomas Baillod — founder of Ba111od watches — has for the timepiece consumer public. His first watches, the Chapter 1 (which comes as the Chapter 1.1, 1.2, and 1.3 to start), come with a unique way of purchasing them that is a brave attempt to shake up how timepieces are sold in an ever-adjusting online marketplace economy. The good thing for collectors is that, in addition to experimenting with a new sales model, the watches themselves are fun and an excellent value.

“Affluendor” is a combination of “aficionado Replica Watches UK , influencer, and vendor.” In a world where timepiece product enthusiasts are far more responsible for sales than retailers and brands are, the concept is interesting and has a lot of merit (assuming consumers learn how it works). Visiting the Ba111od website is the best way to understand this model, but I’ll give you the basics before I delve into talking about the Chapter 1.1 watch itself. Ba111od watches understands two fundamental points about the product purchasing economy these days. Point number one is that, while sales interest might come from all over the place, online sales themselves do not need to occur across a large variety of stores. The point is that sales might benefit from being centralized even if consumers don’t all learn about or form the desire to purchase a product from the brand itself or through the same channels.
Point number two is that watch consumers are increasingly the reason that another watch consumer wants to purchase something. If seeing a watch on a friend inspires us to buy that watch, why not facilitate the transaction starting there, as opposed to elsewhere? Thus, the affluendor is born. replica omega watches

OK, that’s all nice and good, but how does this all occur, practically speaking? It happens with the sale of rights to buy the watches, as opposed to the watches themselves. Ba111od gives out a certain number of “tokens” (rights to buy, in essence) to customers who purchase a Ba111od watch — who then become affluendors. Those tokens can be given to whomever the affluendor desires — who needs the token for a right to purchase the watch.
With the token. a consumer can purchase a Ba111od watch, or even sell/give that token to someone else. Retailers can also use tokens in a way like drop-shipping can. That means a watch retailer could have a small selection of Ba111od watches in their display case, and when a customer wants one, the retailer can give them a token or do the sale right there, and Ba111od will ship the watch out to the consumer — rather than the retailer having to invest in stock. The retailer would take a lower commission than if they invested in inventory, but in theory it could work out well for all parties, given the larger implications of how internet distribution and traditional retail distribution are currently at odds with one another. A model like using tokens in this regard would ensure a more consistent shopping and pricing experience for watch consumers — a model that, that over the long term, will make for a far stronger and reliable wristwatch market.

On to the Ba111od Chapter 1 that, outside the brand’s novel concept of selling watches, is worthy of discussion unto itself. Ba111od founder Thomas Baillod was born in La Chaux-de-Fonds and comes from generations of people in the Swiss watch industry. It’s no secret that his brother works at a major watchmaking name in Geneva. It is necessary to say all this because the design of the watch comes from Europe and people who are seasoned watch experts, even though its construction is all Chinese. In fact, most of the Swiss-made watches out there have similar stories, though brands aren’t public about it.

On a very subtle level, the Ba111od Chapter 1 watch is a message from Mr. Baillod to the industry that their value propositions to consumers are all off. He wants to show them that he can do nearly what they can but in a surprisingly inexpensive fashion. Does he wish to hurt the industry he comes from with such a move? I don’t think so. Knowing Thomas, I believe his goal is to both besmirch them and also encourage them to focus on where they do offer value. The real reason to buy a Swiss watch is because of attention to detail, loads of human effort, and application of real watchmaking culture and tradition. Swiss watches, in a lot of ways, almost necessarily require a lot of parts made in Switzerland because they are often made better in Switzerland with visual results to prove it. What then is a Swiss-designed watch that uses trained eyes to get the best of Asian manufacturing? I’m not sure, but brands ranging from SevenFriday to Ba111od are examples.

For under $400, the Chapter 1.1 is a good value. The 43mm-wide polished steel case (water resistant to 30 meters) is topped with a very clear and glare-free double-domed sapphire crystal. That you can see into the dial so well and legibly is a not an insignificant deal. The case is classic in fashion but with modern contrast polishing. It isn’t a small watch, but it isn’t too large, either, and it is meant to be a frame for the highly animated mechanical movement inside it.
Styled somewhere between Breguet and Maurice Lacroix, the Chapter 1.1 is all about the double balance-wheel-based movement inside. The Chinese-made automatic movement is actually really nicely made for the price — with solid attempts to replicate traditional surface finishing, as opposed to leaving so many movement parts blatantly unfinished (as is the case in some cheap mechanical movements). The dial is displayed via a subsidiary dial for the hours and minutes, and the seconds are indicated via a traditional centrally mounted seconds hand. For me, this is like a poor man’s Arnold & Son when you take into consideration the view of the double balance wheels that are connected by a true differential system. How accurate is the movement? I don’t know; it’s not a chronometer. But I don’t think you need to reset the time more than once a week. I’m certainly happy for this price.

As it common with such watches, the case, dial, and movement are often far nicer than the strap and buckle. Ba111od does its best within a limited budget to offer a leather strap and folding metal deployant that is etched with the family chest. Those strap styles, in my opinion, are always stiff and bulky. The first thing I did to improve the wearing experience was to take off the strap and put the watch on something else. I found it was really comfortable on a NATO-style strap, actually. Note to brands wanting to make a dress-style watch: Ditch the deployant clasp. Nine out of 10 times, a simple pin buckle will be much more comfortable than an awkward (and often sharp) folding deployant clasp. I don’t care if people feel that these straps make watches look more expensive; they are not comfortable most of the time.

How do you get a Ba111od Chapter 1.1 or the other models? Well, you need to get to know an affluendor. If you don’t, then you can contact Ba111od watches, and they will actually introduce you to one via their Facebook group. Assuming you and your affluendor hit it off, you could be given your own “rights to sell a Ba111od” watch tokens along with your timepiece and see if you feel it is the future of sales for at least some niche timepiece brands.