An introduction by editorial manager in-chief Elizabeth Doerr: At Quill & Pad we are frequently contacted by perusers. Most are demands for data, yet some lead to an intriguing exchange of conclusions. A recent message from Perry Heim had much to do with his contemplations on one of the present blue-chip watches: the Patek Philippe Nautilus.
He has coordinated his musings well, which I accept makes for an extraordinary conversation starter.
Perry Heim writes:
I’ve had the thought for this piece as a primary concern for a long while now, however as consistently when I consider composing something I unavoidably ask myself, “What’s the point?”
Well, in the wake of perusing significantly more than one article discussing the temperances of Patek Philippe’s Nautilus – such articles appear to spring up dramatically – it became clear to me that none express an undeniable truth that seems evident to me. So I decided to give it a go.
Here is the thing that I find so engaging about the Patek Philippe Nautilus Reference 5711 .
Water resistance and a slight case
What I find generally exceptional about the plan of the Patek Philippe Nautilus Reference 5711 is that it offers 120 meters of water resistance inside a case only 8.3 mm high. You may ask, “What of it?”
In my modest assessment, the two most significant factors while assessing an extravagance sports watch are elegance (hence, extravagance) and strength (hence, sports). And keeping in mind that the accompanying may decide in favor of reductionism, I accept these two can be evaluated effectively utilizing only two boundaries: water resistance as a signifier of sturdiness and case thickness as a proportion of elegance.
Granted, there is something else entirely to extravagance than elegance, and there is a whole other world to elegance than a meager case (a similar going, of course, for sports, strength, and water resistance), so some may differ with the significance of these two.
I do have more criteria. Being a watch fan for quite a while, I have built up a specific ideal for my regular watch. You know the watch I’m discussing: the beach-to-meeting room go-anyplace do-anything sort of watch.
My ideal ordinary watch must be mechanical (automatic or manual winding, both fine by me) with a display case back, some level of luminescence, no thicker than 10 mm, and with a water resistance equivalent to or more prominent than 10 atm (100 m). As we will see, finding the conjuncture of these last two is challenging inside the confines of a solitary watch.
I will currently exhibit that this is an accomplishment unmatched by some other watch, save Patek Philippe’s own 5167 Aquanaut , which figures out how to fit a similar development in a 8.1 mm thick case while holding said water resistance. Does this mean the 5167 is standout to the 5711? Of course not; inventiveness, plan, and legacy are nevertheless a couple of the extra factors at play here.
Putting aside these different aspects by which we are to pass judgment on a timepiece, and paying little heed to which one you like, Patek Philippe, in any event of the blessed trinity – a casual WIS gathering comprising Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, and Vacheron Constantin – seems, by all accounts, to be separated from everyone else in achieving this challenging combination of demands.
What the other two sacred trinity brands and a couple of select others offer
The water resistance of Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oaks are appraised to a simple 50 m, with a screw-down crown on Reference 15202 and without one on the three-gave variants.
Many discusses have emerged over the translation of water-resistance appraisals, and keeping in mind that some claim that 50 meters with a screw-down crown is sufficient for swimming, I am reluctant to lower any extravagance watch with under 100 m water resistance.
In any case, the models with a screw-down crown are about a centimeter thick. And keeping in mind that the 15202 is a great 8.1 mm thick, nobody would prompt you get it too wet.
And the Royal Oak Offshores ? Certainly, they’re water safe. In any case, regardless of whether Chronograph or Diver, they have all the slimness and artfulness of a Big Mac.
Vacheron Constantin’s second-age time-just Overseas is a fine candidate; with a profundity rating of 150 meters and a sensible case thickness of just 9.7 mm, my principle fuss was its lack of a presentation case back (I likewise felt the hands were a touch too short).
Vacheron Constantin added simply such a case back to the third era of the Overseas in 2016 – all the better to flaunt the new in-house 5100 caliber – yet to the detriment of adding almost 2 mm to the case stature. At in excess of 11 mm thick, it doesn’t show up at all sleek.
What about the white gold super dainty Overseas Perpetual Calendar ? Gracious, if at any time there was a delicious watch to view. Tragically, it achieves its clean plan by getting rid of a date window and second hand, and its 7.5 mm slight profile is accomplished to the detriment of water resistance, down from 150 to 50 meters.
The A. Lange & Söhne Odysseus , Breguet Marine , and Glashütte Original Seventies all exceed 11 mm in tallness as is inclined to occur with a major date complication (adequately fascinating, the new Marine got rid of the huge date however didn’t get any thinner).
Jaeger-LeCoultre’s games watches will in general have a strong case back and are as a rule a long way from dainty, just like the case, of course, with Rolex (doubtlessly to be expected with a base development 6 mm in tallness). Omega’s current contributions are housed in cases with sapphire crystal case backs, yet I locate the Co-Axial escapements will in general deliver the timepieces with the elements of a little hockey puck.
A couple of abnormal suspects come to mind. Piaget’s Polo S and Girard-Perregaux’s Laureato are both evaluated to 100 meters and come in at simply under a centimeter in stature. Prima facia this sounds great however, oh, these fine timepieces just convey additional verification that numbers aren’t all that matters. Notwithstanding being among the individuals who discover the plans of these pieces subsidiary, they just don’t feel all that flimsy to me.
Other critical models, but discontinued, are Omega’s Constellation Double Eagle with the 2500 caliber. It’s still (or, rather, effectively) Co-Axial, you get a sapphire crystal case back and 100 m of water resistance, yet dissimilar to Omega’s current contributions it comes in less than 10 mm in height.
Another is Blancpain’s Leman Aqualung (the restricted version of 1999 pieces, not the one with the excellent date, mind you), very fetching in my opinion.
Lastly, a watch I for one possess and energetically recommend in the event that you can discover one: the Nomos Tangente Sport Datum 531. Like the recent Hodinkee restricted version , the 531 is controlled by Nomos Glashütte’s Beta caliber so it has a date window notwithstanding a display case back. It’s evaluated to 100 m without a screw-down crown (beneficial thing, as well, as it’s a manual breeze) and is approximately 8 mm thick (generally because Nomos claims a thickness of 7.9 mm with the show case back, though my own Vernier caliper yielded an outcome closer to 8.1 mm.)
While it may have beat the Patek Philippe Nautilus to the extent that the numbers go, the Nomos Glashütte Sport Datum doesn’t appear as thin because of its case being more modest (36.5 mm in width) and not as detailed. In any case, it was my choice for an extravagance sports watch, however, seemingly, without the extravagance price tag.
Finally, we come to what in particular could actually be my watch of the year: Bulgari’s Octo Finissimo 100 m silk cleaned hardened steel . As the name recommends, this Bulgari is sufficiently water safe and just 5.25 mm thick. More than flimsy enough in my book.
So, is it a Nautilus executioner? Not really.
Patek Philippe Nautilus or Bulgari Octo Finissimo?
Personally, and in contrast to the Purists/Hodinkee perspective, I feel that a date window is somewhat opportune on an extravagance sports watch (it’s a helpful function on an every day wearer) similar to a second hand – ideally a central second hand, which is simpler to notice.
But the greater part of all, I accept a games watch should be lumed. The Bulgari Octo Finissimo isn’t. Almost certainly this is to protect the respectability of the plan, and I respect that. Which is all to say that, while I prefers me some lume, I discover the Octo Finissimo compelling sufficient that it could very well be my next purchase.
The presence of lume, a date window, central seconds, and an extra 20 m of water resistance implies that I actually incline toward a Nautilus. However, supply, request, and the market imply that a Patek Philippe Reference 5711 with my name on it will take very some time.
Nonetheless, I trust that in these couple of words I have, somewhat, enlightened a couple of aspects concerning why I think Patek Philippe’s Nautilus Reference 5711 is so successful and desirable.
For more data on this model, if it’s not too much trouble, visit www.patek.com/en/collection/nautilus/5711-1A-010 .
Quick Facts Patek Philippe Nautilus Reference 5711
Case: 40 x 8.3 mm, treated steel or pink gold
Development: automatic Caliber 26-330 S C; 28,800 vph/4 Hz, 35-45-hour power save, Spiromax balance spring, Gyromax balance, Patek Philippe Seal
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds; date
Price: CHF 27,000
Quick Facts Bulgari Octo Finissimo Automatic
Case: 40 x 5.25 mm, treated steel or pink gold
Development: super thin automatic Caliber BVL 138, 2.23 mm tallness, 36.6 mm measurement, 21,600 vph/3 Hz frequency, 60-hour power save
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds
Price: $13,900/€12,100 on a bracelet, $12,800 on a strap
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