WT_2004_05: MAURICE LACROIX REVEIL GLOBE AND CHRONO ...

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WT_2004_05: MAURICE LACROIX REVEIL GLOBE AND CHRONO ...

MAURICE LACROIX RÉVEIL GLOBE AND CHRONO GLOBEWell Rounded108 WatchTime October 2004


Maurice Lacroix sets sail for new destinations with its Globe line, which departs fromthe emphatically classical forms that characterized its Masterpiece collection. Twooutstanding new models, sculpted in today’s bigger, bolder dimensions, are an alarmwristwatch and a chronograph.BY JENS KOCHOctober 2004 WatchTime 109


MAURICE LACROIX RÉVEIL GLOBE AND CHRONO GLOBEAlthough the first wristwatches with thename “Maurice Lacroix” on their dialsweren’t sold until 1975, the brand hassucceeded in establishing itself in the elite circleof important watch manufacturers. Freshdesigns, excellent quality, and affordableprices have helped Maurice Lacroix attract anincreasingly large fan club. This Swiss branddebuted two highly innovative models in itsMasterpiece series at the 2002 Basel watchfair. The collection includes watches with additionalfunctions and even vintage movements,two features that naturally give them a certainexclusivity. As the “Globe” in their names suggests,both watches can display the time inmore than one time zone, a useful feature forfrequent travelers and those who cultivate internationalcontacts.The Réveil also has a built-in alarm. As youmight expect, the Chrono Globe can double asa stopwatch. An integrated chronograph isone of the most popular complications, andthis watch has it. As for the case, Maurice Lacroixhas opted to pursue an entirely differentdirection. The design has been modernizedthrough and through, so it not only looks freshand contemporary, it also features plenty ofelaborate craftsmanship.An especially useful feature for travelers isthe combination of an alarm with displays forthe time in a second and a third time zone. TheMaurice Lacroix was able to acquire a hoardof old AS Caliber 5008s that they had reworkedby Jaquet in La Chaux-de-Fonds.Réveil Globe has an additional central handwith a prominent arrowhead that points towardthe preset alarm time. Both watcheshave beautifully shaped and finely craftedhands, as well as faceted indices in the form oftruncated cones. The silver hands on the RéveilGlobe are coated with luminous material andgo well with the white luminous numerals,which are surrounded by slender silver outlines.It’s obvious that lots of love for detail inspiredthis design. For example, the small stylized“M” logo on the dial is convex, thus creatingattractive reflections. Both watches arevery well rounded, with nary a right angle tobe found. Maurice Lacroix spared neither effortnor expense in the design of the case. Apolished bezel contrasts handsomely with thecase’s brushed, broadly planar sides.The crocodile-skin strap, on the other hand,ought to have been crafted with more care fora watch in this price class. The strap on our testcandidate was loosely sewn and uncleanlyglued. Despite those shortcomings, the suppleleather band proved to be very comfortable onthe wrist. The folding clasp is cleverly made,and in its closed position looks very much like apronged buckle. To open it, pressure from twopush-pieces compresses an inner pincer, whichdisconnects the latter from the reinforced lowerarms. The semicircular shape on the longside of the buckle highlights the brand’s logo.The clasp stays securely shut and is somewhatthick, but that in no way detracts from its correctfunctioning. Another advantage becomesapparent after you’ve worn the watch for aAdvantages+ Beautiful case and dial+ Sensible combination of functionsDisadvantages- Leather strap wasn´t cleanly crafted- High priceThe pretty face of the RéveilGlobe has plenty of luminousmaterial. Even in the dark, itclearly indicates both the presetalarm time and the currenttime in a second time zone.In its closed positionthe folding clasp looks likea pronged buckle.110 WatchTime October 2004


MAURICE LACROIX RÉVEIL GLOBE AND CHRONO GLOBEWho’s knocking? The prettily adorned AS Caliber 5008 hasa little hammer at the right, beside the balance.DATA PAGEMasterpiece Chrono GlobeManufacturer: Maurice LacroixModel: Masterpiece Chrono GlobeReference number: MP 6398 SS 002830Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, chronographwith seconds and 30-minute counter,hand-type date display, rapidly adjustable 24-hour display of time in a second zone; 12-hourdisplay of time in a third zone.Movement: ML88, based on a Valjoux 7750.Case: Stainless steel, sapphire crystal is antireflectiveon its inner surface, five screws holdback in place, back with pane of sapphire crystal,water-resistant to 50 meters.Wristband and clasp: Stainless steel with doubly folding clasp.Rate results (deviation in seconds per 24hours, with chronograph switched on / off)Dial up: +4/+2Dial down: +8/+6Crown up: +9/+9Crown down: +6/+7Crown left: +6/+8Greatest deviation of rate: 5/7Average amplitude of balance: 305/299Average deviation: +6.6/+6.4Dimensions: Diameter = 43 mm; height = 16mm; weight = 205 grams.Price: $4,995while: the leather strap runs beneath the metalclasp, thus ensuring that soft leather ratherthan hard steel comes in contact with yourwrist. The black color of the crocodile-skin strapis a good choice too: it’s an excellent match forthe Réveil Globe’s black dial and silver hands.The date appears inside a little window atthe “1:30” position. A 24-hour disk rotatesbeneath another, larger aperture at the “6” toindicate the time in a second zone. The time ina third zone is read from the rotating rehaut.The position of this additional outer ring canbe adjusted by depressing and then turningthe third crown (beside the “9”). The doubleaction needed to operate this crown eliminatesthe risk of unintentional resetting. Thisfunctional solution is quite convincing, eventhough it compels you to reach around to theother side of the watch. The rotating ring iscalibrated with a 12-hour scale so it cannotshow whether it’s presently day or night in thethird time zone. The rehaut is adequately wideand the numbers on it are coated with luminousmaterial, thus enhancing the legibility ofthis display in the dark. It might be best to setThe rotor turns in two directions: onewinds the mainspring, the other tightens thespring that powers the alarm.both additional displays to show the time inthe same zone. This way, you can read the secondzone’s time in the dark and, if you need toknow whether the time shown is a daytime ornighttime hour, you can switch on a light andcheck the number on the 24-hour disk. To setthe time in a second zone, you pull out thewinding-crown (at the “2”) until it clicks intoits first position, then turn the crown counterclockwise.Turning it clockwise resets the date.The second crown (at the “4”) is used towind and set the alarm. Aficionados have devotedmuch discussion to the question ofwhether a wristwatch’s alarm mechanismought to be switched on by pulling the crownoutward or by leaving the crown in its ordinaryposition. Maurice Lacroix’s designers opted forthe extracted-crown solution. The advantage ofthis is that it eliminates the risk of inadvertentlyswitching on the alarm mechanism. The disadvantageis that you can accidentally turn off thealarm if you unknowingly depress the correspondingcrown. Our tester, Peter Hoffmannfrom Roth Jewelers in Ulm, Germany, describedthe sound of the alarm as adequately loud.Maurice Lacroix was able to acquire a hoardof old AS Caliber 5008s. Produced by AntonSchild since 1965, these calibers were reworkedby Jaquet in La Chaux-de-Fonds to augmentthem with second time zone displays. Jaquet’smechanical specialists increased the number offunctional jewels from 25 to 31 and mountedthe rotor atop ball bearings. They also prettifiedthe 5008 with cloud-pattern engraving on itsplates and bridges and sun-pattern engravingon its wheels, blued all of its screws and insertedsome of the jewels into gold settings.112 WatchTime October 2004


A look through the transparentback reveals a nicely decoratedValjoux 7750 with askeletonized rotor. The goodlooks continue under thedial too: above, the timezonewheel with its lever forrapid resetting; below it, thegear-train for the hand-typedate display.Advantages+ Beautiful and refined steel bracelet+ Time in second zone can be rapidly resetDisadvantages- Confusing dialEven the little hammer that strikes thealarm has been given the same decorative engraving,which makes it prettier but also ratherdifficult to find. The easiest way to locate it isto look for the guard pins that limit the scopeof its motion. Jewel bearings for the alarmmechanism are a very sensible addition, forwithout jewels, the lightning-fast motions ofthe hammer would quickly wear out themechanism’s components. The rotor turns intwo directions, one of which winds the mainspring,the other tightens the spring that powersthe alarm. You can also manually rewindthe alarm by turning the second crown. A slidingconnection ensures that you can’t snap thespring by over-winding. Rather than the usualpawl, each barrel has a low-friction detent.The movement as a whole is neatly crafted. Insteadof a fine regulation mechanism, it offersonly an improved regulation option. Thescrews’ heads have several slits and seem to bethreaded in a leftward spiral, as is usually thecase in mechanical devices. Fortunately, theRéveil Globe has a glass back so you can observethe hammer striking its gong to soundthe alarm.This classic vintage movement proved itselfto be both contemporary and highly constanton our timing machine. The greatest deviationamong the several positions was just five secondsper day, an excellent performance. Thisparticular piece was timed to run slightlyahead, but it wouldn’t be difficult to readjust itto reduce the “gain.” The watch also performedsatisfactorily on the wrist, where itgained nine seconds each day.Setting the alarm and the time of day can beaccomplished without encountering anyproblems. The crowns are sufficiently large,with lateral fluting that makes them easy tograsp, and they click neatly into their extractedpositions when you pull them outwards.You don’t have to spend hours poring over aninstruction manual either, as each of thiswatch’s many functions operates more or lessintuitively. There is one exception, however:you must keep the crown pressed inwardwhen you want to reset the position of theouter time-zone ring.All told, a thoroughly successful wristwatch.The only sticking point is the price: $4,995, makingit more costly than the Masterpiece alarmwristwatch without additional time zones. Onthe other hand, the case with the rotating rehautis more labor-intensive to manufacture and thesecond time zone with the 24-hour disk is acomplication that you have to pay for. A price ofThe steel bracelet gives the Chrono Globe astrikingly sporty appearance. The Réveil Globe,by contrast, is more elegant.this magnitude puts Maurice Lacroix’s watchinto the luxury ballpark. This one sells for just abit less than the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Réveilwith a manufacture caliber (but without the secondtime zone). Finally, you should also bear inmind that Maurice Lacroix built these timepieceswithout making any compromises.The second watch in the series, the ChronoGlobe, has no windows on its dial. Instead, itsfour subdials combine to give the face a verydifferent and perfectly symmetrical look. We114 WatchTime October 2004


MAURICE LACROIX RÉVEIL GLOBE AND CHRONO GLOBEwere particularly struck by the gorgeous steelbracelet, which looks as though it were madefrom dozens of little steel beads. A secondglance discovers just how cleverly constructedit is. The bracelet’s raised components are polishedand seem to rest atop the lower, satinfinishedplane, echoing the case’s design motif.The transition from the bracelet to the caseis excellent. The terminal components in thebracelet repeat the shape of the case’s lugs,thus helping to create an overall harmony. Thehigh quality of the Chrono Globe’s workmanshipis every bit as good as that found on theRéveil Globe. The bracelet is flattened on theinside and the individual links are shaped sothat a slight curvature of the bracelet producesa smooth surface on the inside of the bracelet.This makes the wristband extremely supple,conforming perfectly to your wrist with uncommoncomfort. The steel bracelet gives theChrono Globe a strikingly sporty appearance.The Réveil Globe, by contrast, is more elegant.Both watches have nice round cases. MauriceLacroix no doubt benefits from the fact that it’sone of the few watch brands to produce itsown cases. This also means that the companyDATA PAGEMasterpiece Réveil GlobeManufacturer: Maurice LacroixModel: Masterpiece Réveil GlobeReference number: MP 6388 SS 001330Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, alarm,24-hour display of time in a second zone, 12-hour display of time in a third zone.Movement: ML06, based on an AS 5008; ballbornerotor, alarm’s movement has its own barrel; 31 jewels, Incabloc shock absorption, Glucydur balance, Nivarox balance-spring, Nivaflexmainspring, decorated.Case: Stainless steel, sapphire crystal is antireflectiveon its inner surface, five screws holdback in place, back with pane of sapphire crystal,water-resistant to 50 meters.Wristband and clasp: Louisiana crocodile-skinstrap with folding clasp.Rate results (deviation in seconds per 24hours)Dial up: +7Dial down: +11Crown up: +11Crown down: +11Crown left: +12Greatest deviation of rate: 5Average amplitude of balance: 288Average deviation: +10.4Dimensions: Diameter = 43.5 mm; height =16.5 mm; weight = 119 grams.Price: $4,995can speedily transform new designs into threedimensionalrealities. And it also means thatthe results are more likely to match the brand’soriginal intentions than they would have beenif the case had been produced extramurally.People with a penchant for bicolor watcheswill be glad to know that Globe models arealso available with two-tone cases that artfullycombine stainless steel and rose gold.In addition to its chronograph with centrallyaxial seconds-hand and 30-minute counter, theChrono Globe also has a hand-type date displayat the “3” and a 24-hour display of the time in asecond time zone at the “6.” The silver dial appealinglyjuxtaposes matte and glossy elements.The time, however, is not optimally legible becausethere’s only a moderate contrast betweenthe silver dial and the silver hands that indicatethe hours and minutes. The positions of the other(black) hands are easier to see. If perfect legibilityis an important criterion for you, then we’dsuggest that you choose an optionally availableversion of the Chrono Globe with a black dial.The printing on the dial of the one that we testedwasn’t perfect, as the paint had peeled offone of the indices.Like the alarm wristwatch, the ChronoGlobe has a numerical ring around its dial toindicate the time in a third zone. This didn’tleave much space for the hand-type date display,which is so petite that its legibility is compromised.A similar criticism can be directedagainst the display of the time in a secondzone. This 24-hour subdial, which is designedto resemble a flattened projection of theglobe, is marked with only three numerals. Thetwelve is unmistakable, but the two horizontalsixes can be mistaken for nines. The doubleheadedhand on this subdial is midnight blueon one half and silver on the other. Why?When the sun is shining on one side of theplanet, night reigns on the other side. The situationis reversed twelve hours later, when thetwo ends of the hand have switched placeswith one another. If, however, you’ve set thedisplay to show the time in a particular zone,then the silver end of the hand illogically alsoindicates nighttime hours. Furthermore, youhave to remember which color you selected,otherwise you won’t know if it’s currently dayor night in that time zone. It would have beenbetter to have installed a single-headed hand116 WatchTime October 2004


TEST RESULTSMasterpiece Chrono GlobeWristband and clasp (max. 10 points): 9Well-crafted steel bracelet with refined designinside and out, along with a stable doublyfolding clasp.Operation (5): 4The large crowns and planar heads of the pushpiecesensure ease of operability; the rapid adjustmentmechanism for the display of time in asecond zone is a useful feature.Case (10): 9Like the case of the Globe Réveil, here too thecase is neatly and elaborately crafted.Design (15): 12Very beautiful bracelet and case, but a blackdial looks better.Legibility (5): 3Legibility is compromised by the low contrastbetween the silver hands and silver dial and bythe unduly small sizes of the displays for thedate and second time zone.Wearing comfort (10): 8Very comfortable for a steel wristband: the makerswent to great lengths to ensure its comfort,but this watch is somewhat too heavy.Movement (20): 14The Valjoux 7750 is an old, reliable friend; here,it has been embellished and modified to supportthe display of the time in a second zone.Rate results (10): 8With its steady rate in the several positions andits good amplitude, this movement could easilybe fine-tuned to perform as accurately as a chronometer.Overall value (15): 11The price isn’t quite as painful as the price ofthe alarm version, but this watch is rather costly nonetheless.TOTAL: 78 pointsTEST RESULTSMasterpiece Réveil GlobeWristband and clasp (max. 10 points): 7Cleverly designed clasp, but the strap issomewhat inattentively crafted.Operation (5): 4All three crowns are easy to operate.Case (10): 9Excellent workmanship is evident on this elaboratecase with sapphire crystals front and back.Design (15): 12As round as the globe, with attractive contrastsbetween satin-finished and polished surfaces;the connection between strap and lugs is solidand reliable.Legibility (5): 3Good legibility both day and night, but thealarm hand can be confusing if you glancequickly at the dial.Wearing comfort (10): 9This watch is very comfortable on the wrist; theclasp is constructed so that it doesn’t pinch orpress uncomfortably.Movement (20): 14A classic alarm caliber, newly modified anddecorated.Rate results (10): 8Very steady rate in all positions; the watch wasdeliberately adjusted to gain significantly.Overall value (15): 11You get a lot for your money, but the pricenonetheless seems a bit steep.TOTAL: 77 pointsand used a darker hue for the half of the subdialthat represents the nighttime hours.The rapid resetting mechanism for the timezones with its little push-piece at the “8” isvery functional, but it would have been evenbetter if its hand could be reset in full-hourrather than quarter-hour increments. In its presentversion, the time zone display can strayout of synch with the minute hand, leavingyou unsure about the minutes in the othertime zone. Quarter-hour increments don’tmake much sense anyway, especially whenyou consider that there are no time zones onearth which differ from one another by quarterhours. The rotating annulus beneath the crystalfor the third time zone functions just as perfectlyon this watch as it does on the RéveilGlobe alarm wristwatch. On neither of the twowatches, however, is the contrast betweenwhite numerals and silver dial especially dis-118 WatchTime October 2004


Harmonious curves: the Réveil Globe’s case has eye-catching lugs;satin-finished and polished surfaces contrast attractively.tinct. Fortunately, black outlines around thenumerals on the annular rehaut significantlyincrease the legibility.Stopped times are very readily legible.Black material is used for the central secondshandand for the display of the elapsed minutes.Another nice detail is that the littlehands on the subdials are shaped like smallerversions of the main hour hand and minutehand. The little hands are skeletonized ratherimproves its appearance and allows you to seemore of the underlying movement.As far as rate is concerned, the robust Valjoux7750 once again proves to be a guarantorof precision. The greatest deviation of ratewas a mere five seconds with the chronographswitched off and just seven secondswith the chronograph switched on. Resultslike these suggest that this watch runs at avery constant rate.Maurice Lacroix benefits from the fact that it’s one ofthe few watch brands that produces its own cases.than filled with luminous material. Operatingthe chronograph is very easy. The push-pieceshave large planar surfaces, protruding fromthe case like little mushrooms from the forestfloor and they’re an excellent match for therounded design of the watch. Setting thetime is also an easily accomplished and pleasurabletask thanks to the large crown, whichis identical with the one used on the RéveilGlobe.A modified Valjoux 7750 ticks inside theChrono Globe. Although there’s a pane ofsapphire crystal in the back of the case, youstill can’t see the additional mechanism thatsupports the rapidly adjustable display of timein a second zone because this device is mountedon the dial side of the movement. Very visible,on the other hand, are the embellishmentson the movement, which put it on thesame high level of quality as the movement insidethe alarm watch. There, as here, you’llfind blued screws, sun-pattern engraving,golden faux châtons, and mechanically polishedlevers. The rotor is skeletonized, whichAt a retail price of $4,995, the ChronoGlobe costs the same as its “alarming” sister. Ifyou prefer the chronograph with a leatherstrap, you can have it for just $4,750. On theother hand, paying the surcharge of just $150gets you a fantastic metal bracelet for a trulybargain price. “Bargain,” however, is not aword that can be applied to this wristwatch.The few alterations that were made in the Valjoux7750 have a hard time justifying the price.Maurice Lacroix has hit the proverbial nailon the head with these round Globe models.Their futuristic design and uncompromising realizationmake them impressive and trend-settingmembers of Maurice Lacroix’s collection.The combination of additional functions wasintelligently selected and superbly implemented,especially on the Réveil. The white numeralswith their silver outlines are particularlypraiseworthy, as are the case and above all thebracelet with its nearly spherical links. Thescope of functions and the design are likewisetotally convincing. You might say that bothGlobe models are very well rounded.120 WatchTime October 2004

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