Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon Vintage Black Review

Triple-date movements come in four varieties:

  1. Triple date / full calendar. All non-31-day months require adjustment, as the movement does not account for them.
  2. Annual calendar. Knows about 30 and 31 day months, has to be adjusted only once a year, on March 1st.
  3. Perpetual calendar: Knows about leap years, usually requires adjustment every century.
  4. Secular calendar: Adjust every 400 years. Getting kind of silly here.

I like these watches but I struggle to envision a scenario where I would spend the money on them. Fashion brand Ermenegildo Zegna recently debuted two watches in a new collection produced in collaboration with the Sowind Group. Based on the label’s “High Performance” collection of clothing, these new sport watches are fashionably (and practically satisfying). But are they worth your money compared to the alternatives?

Inside this Grande Reverso Duoface is a Jaeger-LeCoultre caliber 986 manually wound movement. All features are controlled via the crown and it has a power reserve of about 48 hours. It is a slick movement and all I could have asked for in addition to the existing features would be a power reserve indicator. For me, I really like it when manually wound movements have those. Price for this excellent Jaeger-LeCoultre Grande Reverso Duoface watch is ,300 in 18k rose gold and about ,200 in steel. It is a classic, and an easy decision to own.

Swarovski Octea Abyssal Automatic Watch

Swarovski Octea Abyssal Automatic Watch

Three-dimensional horological engine designed by Jean-Marc Wiederrecht/Agenhor;

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The first thing I thought to myself when I saw these new watches from Buben & Zorweg was "that looks an awful lot like a Martin Braun." Low and behold, Martin Braun is the man behind the movements in these watches. The architecture looks a lot like some of his new stuff at his current brand Antoine Martin. You can see a hands-on look at the Antoine Martin Perpetual Calendar watch here. The movement in this One Perpetual Calendar piece is directly adopted from that piece.

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For the dial, Itay Noy designed a five layer design that has discs instead of hands and a series of colors and levels. There will actually be four distinct DiaLOG watch versions - each with a different dial design. They have distinct discs for the hours, minutes, and seconds, but it looks like so much more. Reading the time for instance looks like it can be done with lining up the discs with the arrow under 12 o'clock, or using the moving indicator on the disc with the peripheral hour indicator scale.

Limited edition              81 pieces

The watch is part of a relationship between UK-based watch brand Bremont and The National Museum of the Royal Navy in Portsmouth, England. The final piece will be unveiled in July 2012 during an event aboard the ship. This is the second Bremont limited edition watch to contain parts from an historic military machine. They did this first in the Mustang P-51 timepiece covered here.

Inside of the watches is Graham's G1733 automatic movement. This is probably a caliber from Dubois-Depraz. It has a big-date indicator, 30 minute chronograph, and a super-sized GMT hand. I actually like the big ol' GMT hand the more I look at it. More and more these days I like GMT chronograph watches as I find them useful for travel. Though I tend to prefer those with full 12 hour registers. Gee, even the "GMT" label on the dial is massive.

Using medieval (and prior) Iceland history, JS Watch came up with an attractive design to engrave all over the 42mm wide steel case of the Frisland God piece. According to the brand they spent a lot of time looking at old Icelandic artifacts for inspiration. On one side of the case is space for an engraving in the ancient Höfðaletur font. It says "Iceland" by default, but JS Watch recommends that each customer order a custom engraving (such as their name) to be spelled out in Höfðaletur (no, I don't know how to pronounce that either) text.

Hands: 18K gold

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Let me share with you a few of the words that Graham uses to describe its newer Chronofighter Oversize GMT Black Steel watch collection. The name itself is long enough as it is. Let's see here, according to our friends at the British Masters this watch is "chic, gutsy, dogged, classy, undaunted, a milestone, magnetic, skilled, extra sensitive, faithful, and a backslider." Wow, that sounds like rock band made up of a KGB spy, an ex dictator turned psychologist, Alexander the Great, and a criminal who was formerly an arch bishop. I had to look up "backslider" by the way. No, it isn't a cool way of falling down the stairs. Apparently it is a religious term for a "saved" person who has fallen into sinned. Oh Graham, you dogged backslider you.

This year Seiko will have released four limited edition watches in honor of the famous Japanese manga series Golgo 13. "Duke Togo," aka Golgo 13 is the main character of the manga series that has been running since the late 1960s. In Japan, Golgo 13 is extremely recognizable and the four watches are true fanboy collector items of the highest quality. Now you too can kill enemies just like Duke! This isn't the first time Seiko has created limited edition watches for an anime or manga series. In the past I discussed pieces such as this high-end Seiko Galante watch for Astro Boy. Another super cool watch.

For the UNICO All Carbon, Hublot uses a King Power chronograph case. The 48mm wide case is actually carbon fiber, as is the bezel. There are PVD black titanium screws used for the case and bezel. A ring of rubber lines the side of the bezel. The black carbon fiber case looks cool, and the visual texture of carbon fiber is really at its best here with the high-quality material. The case is very light and strong despite the size.

Using a base Swiss ETA 7750 automatic chronograph, Louis Moinet transforms it into their caliber LM30 automatic movement. There is a lot of work that went into the movement including new bridges, a special custom rotor, and lots of other little details. As I mentioned, the chronograph was turned into a monopusher chrono, with the chadburn style function selector on the dial. This isn't the first time I have seen something like this - and it isn't really a new function, but it is cool to have. I further like the fonts used on the dial.

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The MBII was one of Bremont's break out models and effectively offered open availability of the MBI, which is only available to pilots who had actually ejected in a Martin-Baker aircraft ejection seat and is recognizable thanks to a bright red aluminum case barrel. From a watch perspective, the MBI and MBII are noteworthy due to their use of a proprietary anti-shock system which Bremont developed in a partnership with Martin-Baker to protect the BE-36AE movement from the extreme g-forces experienced by some pilots. I really like that the changes to the MBII/TWG are subtle enough to make the watch easily recognizable to a collector or fan but not change the overall style or spirit of the MBII design with additional logos or text.

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The majority of new "fashion" brands we see fit this mold. The watches themselves can be fun or stylish, but aren't anything to dedicate a cool technical article to. So how do people sell them aside from just their looks and price? Often they associate the watches with a cause. I have seen a number of these in the last few years being associated with everything from environmentalism to providing watches to doctors in third world countries. The latter company made the amusingly wild suggestion that "thousands of people are dying each year because of lack of watches." Boy, if only that were true it would be a real industry boom, no?

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Each of the dial and hand options for the ORCA makes sense. I like that the hands are pretty much all long enough. It would have been easy for them to make that mistake, but they did not. Kudos to German stuff! The watches comes with hand-made leather straps but the bracelet option shouldn't be passed up. It is chunky and uses all hex screws. It looks serious, and might help you beat up your opponent in a fight. You'll be a real killer whale wearing one of these.

C-3PO and Yoda get similar watches but with different dial designs and casebacks. Both the Seiko Star Wars C-3PO (ref. SDGC015) and Seiko Star Wars Yoda (ref. SDGC013) come in 41.7mm wide steel cases with the same 6R21 automatic mechanical movement as the Stormtrooper watch model. C-3PO's watch has a black and gold toned dial which looks attractive. Yoda's watch is a bit more unique looking with a metallic green dial and electric green colored "light saber" seconds hand. Yoda's model gets a Rebel Alliance logo on the dial as well as an impossible to forget phrase "May the force be with you" on the back of the watch.

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