Baselworld 2014…ceramic coated aluminum…
The “skull” theme continues to find its way around the watch world, but in keeping with its spirit of materials innovation this year, Hublot has a rather unique take on this particular skull. Hublot’s Classic Fusion Tourbillon Skull is distinguished by its ceramic-coated aluminium case, crown and dial components which give this piece a rather striking appearance. The material, new to Hublot, is twice as light as ceramic but with comparable hardness. The 45mm case also has a distressed finish to it and pairs quite nicely with the distressed calfskin strap.
Stained glass, skulls and rare metal osmium dials aside, here is a solid addition to Hublot’s Classic Fusion collection. The Classic Fusion 8-days is a refined watch with an ultra-thin caliber visible through sapphire display back. At just 4.40 mm thick (209 components, 3Hz), the hand-wound Hublot manufacture caliber HUB1601 is among the flattest in the industry. The dial is accented with a power reserve indicator along with date window and small second. The 45mm case and bezel have a nice balance of brushed and polished surfaces.
Hublot Classic Fusion 8-day Power Reserve
45 mm titanium or King gold (gold +5% platinum) case, black dial with a sunray satin finish, baton indexes, gold- or rhodium-plated hands
Following my “first look/quick look” at the new Tudor Heritage Black Bay with blue bezel, let’s take at some more detail images of this watch.
Baselworld 2014…rare metal osmium dial…
Its dial is made from osmium crystal – osmium is among the rarest metals on our planet. With a clear emphasis on materials innovation based on this year’s Baselworld releases – from red and blue stained glass dials to blue carbon fiber bezels and now this — Hublot introduces another world first. Here is a watch with a dial made from osmium crystal (oh and it has a tourbillon, too).
Here is an interesting take on Hublot and its “Art of Fusion”! The inspiration behind this watch was simple: a stained glass window – essentially it’s a series of frames filled with colored glass. Take this concept and apply to a skeleton watch. In this watch there are about 15 small spaces housing a sliver of (Swiss-made) stained glass (“Vitrail” tranlsates to English as “stained glass” by the way). The pieces are secured with O-rings which grip the glass, ensuring that it does not break through heat expansion.
Baselworld 2014…blue carbon fiber…
Today we’ll look at the 2014 Hublot releases from Baselworld, among other watches. The King Power “Special One” is a reference to football coach José Mourinho – who recently rejoined the ranks of the Hublot ambassadors. While I am not particularly fond of Hublot’s endless one-off editions for this person or that, you can see there is something special about this watch. It is distinguished by a new dark blue carbon fiber bezel, the result of a new technical process developed by Hublot. The watch is offered in the standard King Power 48mm size, in either titanium or Hublot King Gold.
Having now seen this year’s Chronomat Airborne (the collection’s 30th anniversary), let’s take a quick look at another release from Breitling this year, the Navitimer. The Breitling Navitimer – a technical and purpose-built watch with circular slide rule – is an easily recognizable icon from the brand. This year Breitling is launching upsized versions of the Navitimer, 46mm and 48mm + GMT function. We’ll look at both, below.
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of its flagship Chronomat model, Breitling is launching a special series with a resolutely technical and professional look. This model traces its roots in the original Frecce Tricolori chronograph that Breitling created for the Italian aerobatics team in 1983. In 1984, Breitling celebrated its 100th anniversary in grand style by launching the Chronomat collection. Over the past three decades, this watch has evolved in various ways but overall it has retained a similar look and functionality. Though a big step came in 2009, when the Chronomat was the first model to house Breitling’s new Manufacture calibers. And now here we are in 2014 — the 30th anniversary of Breitling’s best-seller.
Chopard debuts a second iteration of its 8HF watch. When it was unveiled in 2012, the Chopard L.U.C 8HF (8 hz “High Frequency) contained the first ever movement with a high-frequency escapement (8Hz/57,600 beats per hour) to be chronometer-certified by the COSC (typical watch movements operate at 4Hz or less). Many details of this year’s 8HF are very similar to the 2014 version, except now the 42mm case (11.2mm thick) is black ceramic (vs original 8HF which was titanium) and this is also a “power control” model so there is also a power reserve indicator on the dial.
Perpetuelle’s Baselworld 2014 coverage continues with a reveal of the new Chopard Mille Miglia Chronograph. This sport watch is highly anticipated by Chopard fans when it is launched each year. This year’s edition has softer lines and a bit more of a ‘vintage’ look to it, with slender cursive dial font and soldered (rather than screwed in) lugs. It also carries a more distinic “Italian” flavor to it, with its red tachometric scale and hands, white dial and green minute track. I noticed also that the usual rubber strap with 1960s Dunlop racing tyre-tread motif has been replaced by a version in overstitched Barenia calfskin, given the watch an even softer and more vintage feel this year.
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