October 4, 2010
by Ariel Adams
It is possible to get good watch deals these day. But they don’t always come to you. I would have never heard of Bianci watches had they not contacted me, and chances are most of you would have never heard of them without me sharing them with you. Actually, it allows me to mention something about the watch world – no one has ever totally indexed it. That means there is no definitive list of every watch brand. That would require each brand that pops up to (A) know of the list, and (B) take the time to be included on the list. So as it stands (and as it will stand for the conceivable future), discovering good watches can be a spontaneous adventure.
Anyhow, Bianci watches are done by designer Roberto Bianci. They use (at least the ones I have seen) Swiss movements with probably Asian componentry. That actually sums up a major chunk of the watch industry. But in this case prices are really fair. This watch retails for $239.99 on their website, but aBlogtoRead.com readers get a special discount. More on that below.
This piece is the ref. 5837M, which is in their Tungsten collection. As such, the watch has a tungsten carbide case. I had to do a little bit of research on this, and it turns out that tungsten carbide is an all tungsten material. Meaning it is not just a coating or plating as I suggested it might be in the video review. Tungsten is a metal, but seems to have ceramic like properties. It’s edges are a bit sharp, but it is highly scratch resistant. Plus the colors won’t fade. Tungsten (hard to photograph) has an interesting color which is like a dark, mirror like gunmetal. This means it a dark glossy gray. The mixture of the color and the reflective qualities make it an ideal “men’s bling item.” This means it has a nice showy quality to it, without lacking a masculine feel given the dark gray color.
The watch case is 44mm wide, but wears small due to the thick bezel. The bezel of course is “AP” style with its 12 sided shape. The case and bracelet have a nice heft to it, and I have seen watches priced two or three times as much that don’t have the same feel to it. At 10mm thick, the case is pretty thin actually. The crown is nicely substantial, while the chronograph pushers are much smaller and highly rounded.
For the dial Bianci went for applied triangular hour markers that feel like they match the theme of the watch pretty well. The hands and hour markers both have lume applied to them, and contrast with the black dial well. The face of the watch isn’t too original, but feels highly acceptable and conservative. I happen to like the rounded edges on the square date window. The sloped flange ring is a tachymeter scale.
Attached to the watch is a matching tungsten bracelet that is pretty comfortable and nice looking. Again, the overall look of the watch is acceptable and conservative. A respectable looking timepiece that isn’t gonna win any beauty contests, but looks nice, and is a good value for the price. The case has a sapphire crystal and the case is water resistant to 30 meters.
Inside the watch is an ISA movement. ISA is one of the less commonly known Swiss watch movement makers. All the movements they make that I’ve seen are on the “interesting side.” All quartz, and they like arranging complications in interesting watches. In this watch you have the time, date, 30 minute chronograph (with a sweeping, not ticking seconds hand), subsidiary seconds dial, and day of the week dial. A good feature it has is the ability to manually adjust the chronograph seconds hand if it gets out of place. In the images here you can tell that the chronograph seconds hand is not perfectly aligned. I was able to manually adjust it to make it perfect again.
With a highly scratch resistant tungsten case, sapphire crystal, Swiss movement, and decent looks, the Bianci 5837m is a good value for its $239.99 (direct from Bianci online) price. aBlogtoRead.com readers can get an additional 25% off this Bianci watch if purchased via their online store by using the discount code: “ablogtoread5837.” That makes the price of this watch just $180 for you if you use the discount code.
Thanks to Bianci for the review unit. Opinions are 100% independent.