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Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis has been on a spree of material innovation lately. A few weeks ago, I looked at the Excalibur Carbon Spider Watch which had the first movement to feature significant use of carbon – specifically, the movement plate, bridges, and tourbillon upper cage were done in carbon. We also got to go hands-on with this watch, the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt which is the first watch in the world to feature a case constructed entirely out of something called cobalt chrome – a high-strength alloy that serves as a suitable backdrop for the watch’s impressive quad layout balance.

Roger Dubuis released the first Excalibur Quatuor model back in 2013, and they were already experimenting with materials on the watch, offering a silicon model in a limited edition of 3 watches each priced at a staggering $1,000,000. The Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt doesn’t get near that price. Though, it is also a limited edition, coming in only 8 pieces. What was visually impressive then remains as such – check out the video above of the four balances in action.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

As our Kenny Yeo put it when we covered this watch’s release, “Cobalt chrome is an alloy with a very high specific strength and biocompatibility, and it is used widely in the medical and aeronautical industries to make turbines, artificial knee and hip joints, and even dental crowns.” And as for MicroMelt, it’s the process that involves atomizing a molten alloy in a high-pressure gas stream.

The result is essentially a powder which is then subjected to blending, isostatic pressing, hot working, and processing. In this case, the process results in cobalt chrome. Additionally, many of the corrosion-resistant features of the watch are also due in part to the passive protection film that exists as a trait typical in most anti-corrosive metals. The vibrant sheen of the cobalt chrome coupled with the blue PVD on the plates and bridges is nothing short of a visual treat.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

We wouldn’t be able to talk about a Quator watch without mentioning the array of four balances arranged symmetrically throughout the dial. They’re all angled at 45 degrees and occupy large internal cutaways that also leave most of the movement visible. In theory, these four balances linked by five differentials cancel out the effects of gravity on each individual balance. Whatever the reason may be for this approach, one thing is for sure – it looks really, really great. Check out the video above to get a close look at one of the balances in action.

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Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt watch has a 48mm-wide and 18.38mm-thick case, so it’s definitely a big watch but that’s really in the Roger Dubuis DNA at this point. Looking at the case back, we see the near-kaleidoscopic symmetry Roger Dubuis achieves with the the RD101 movement – a Geneva Seal-certified, 590-component caliber that also delivers a stifled 40 hours of power reserve. Looking through the case-back, we find much of the same blue PVD execution seen on the dial with a bit more decoration throughout the plate and bridges.

Can I just add how cool the toothed bezel and the crown look – positively vibrant with their angles and the sheen of the cobalt-chrome.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Not unlike other watches from the brand, the Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt blends a few automotive-inspired touches thanks to the minute track which, at least to my eye, is reminiscent of a speedometer. The hands are white gold with red tips and paired with a group of rhodium-plated indexes to complement the blue PVD and red color scheme I mentioned earlier. The same color scheme can be found in the power reserve indicator at 9 o’clock, which I found to be a playful touch considering how much of an afterthought most power reserve indications appear to be in other timepieces.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis paired the Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt with a blue alligator leather strap featuring red stitching and a Grade 5 titanium clasp. While I can’t really recall the last time I saw an alligator strap with stitched accents, I found the matching color scheme to be a nice touch that brought even more balance to the watch.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt Watch Hands-On Hands-On

This is really Roger Dubuis doing what they do best – creating intricately sporty horological wonders that experiment with new materials. It’s a luxury based on theatrical design and material innovation. It’s also a watch that most of us will never get to call our own, since they are only making 8 of them at a price of 390,000 CHFrogerdubuis.com

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  • Raymond Wilkie

    What a total mish-mash. Technically excellent, practically useless.

  • IG
    • ProJ

      One of the best looking dress watches ever made indeed!

    • cluedog12

      The Condottieri is a true classic, but every brand in the Richemont stable has a defined market. You’ve heard it all before. Vacheron Constantine makes the classic beauties, while Roger Dubuis goes bold.

  • The Deplorable Boogur T. Wang

    Nice technology. Definitely one for the display cabinet.
    It also looks clownishly Y U G E on the models wrist.

  • SuperStrapper

    Can’t say I’m particularly fond of the spider-man colourway, but the watch is awesome.

  • BNABOD

    WHAT THE HELL IS THIS? whomever is in charge of design needs to go stat.
    they tried to cram as much as they could in there and then they design a watch that screams “PLEASE LOOK AT ME”. Look I am not saying the engineering is not in it but it is seriously fugly and in my book fugly = no sale. That simple

  • Shawn Lavigne

    neato.

  • mtnsicl

    What a cluster f**k! Where’s the box to click that says, “thumbs down”?

    • IG

      It had thumbs down on the ABTW site design meeting.

      • mtnsicl

        It just seems very odd that they ask, “What do you think?”, but there’s no choices if you do not like the watch. How one sided is that?

        • Ariel Adams

          Thanks for asking this important question. This is my philosophy on the topic; if you have something negative to say about a watch, you are 100% entitled to do so but you need to explain your reasoning. The community here should be about offering enthusiasm, experience, and well-thought-out constructive criticism. If you don’t like something I don’t feel that simply saying “this isn’t nice to me” is enough. I think people should explain the reason behind their feelings so that others know where they are coming from and why. Does this take more work than simply pressing a button? Sure, and its’ designed to ensure that negative sentiments are properly framed and don’t come across as hostile, unfair, or objective facts when they are in actuality subjective expressions of taste.

          • mtnsicl

            But, if you have something positive to say, you can simply push a button with no explanation to why it’s positive. Can you see how that’s totally one sided, and not balanced journalism? If there’s a Thumbs Up button, there should be a Thumbs Down button. If there’s a Classy button, there should be a Trashy button. Can you understand that, in this day and age, the idea of fake news, consumer distrust or skewing facts in one direction, is very off putting for people? Even if it’s at a subconscious level? I also noticed that some of your articles don’t have a listed author. For me, if I don’t know at least a little about who wrote it, I don’t care to read it.

  • Somehow I believe 390000 CHF would be better spent on an Urwerk + a Carrera GTS. But that’s just me.

  • DanW94

    Visually, it’s hypnotic with the four balance wheels in action. Juvenile superhero-like color scheme. The name (micromelt) belongs on a greasy diner menu, preferably with fries and a shake.

  • Greg Dutton

    It’s really, really ugly, but it makes up for it by being really, really expensive.

  • Jackyl

    This is One hell of a horological piece! I love watches but this one is out of my league due to that price tag. Just looking at those details and moving parts are just amazing.

  • BRIAN

    Borden hit the nail on the head. If Porsche is making a profit selling an entire supercar car at less then that price how on earth do they charge that much for a non precious metal or gem watch???

    It is like they just throw at a number at random and say “F” it let’s give it a try.

  • Word Merchant

    I hate it and I’ve no intention of explaining myself further.

    • Marius

      This is my philosophy on the topic: if you have something negative to say about a watch, you are 100% entitled to do so but you need to explain your reasoning. The community here should be about offering enthusiasm, experience, and well-thought-out constructive criticism. If you don’t like something I don’t feel that simply saying “this isn’t nice to me” is enough. I think people should explain the reason behind their feelings so that others know where they are coming from and why. Does this take more work than simply pressing a button? Sure, and its’ designed to ensure that negative sentiments are properly framed and don’t come across as hostile, unfair, or objective facts when they are in actuality subjective expressions of taste.

      • Ariel Adams

        At least credit your sources in order to avoid plagiarism.

    • Ariel Adams

      Roger Dubuis watches are easy to not like until you put them on your wrist. It is at that moment you realize that despite being high-end toys that appeal to a child-like sense of wonder inside of many of us, you are still damn happy to being wear it regardless of how impractical it might be. What it lacks in classiness it makes up for in sheer visceral fun in my personal opinion.

      • cluedog12

        This is a good point. This watch doesn’t make sense, so at least it should be so absurd as to make you smile.

  • Javiersteva

    That kind of money can save a small country from bankruptcy ! FUGLY ! to boot.

  • Lawrence

    The watch design is all over the place

  • Ulysses31

    It would look better if the colours weren’t picked out by Superman. Even the hours markers look like Kryptonian symbols. Surely this is some kind of joke.

  • cluedog12

    Would be interesting to play with the natural characteristics of the movement and go for a flower motif on the dial. Would remove that seconds hand too, since symmetry is regarded as beautiful in nature.