Awhile back, I was sent a trio of watches by Gavox Watch Company. All three watches make up the Legacy Power Reserve collection, which is relatively new to the brand. The blue and gray dials represent the Ultima Necat model, and the white dial represents the Carpe Diem. Perhaps a bit more Poirot than Pilot, the Legacy series of watches is a definite departure from the aviation/squadron-style watches the brand is known for.
Based in Belgium, Gavox has been around since 2011, which seems like a long time in the world of microbrands. If you are active in the watch community, you have most likely seen Gavox around, either in the steel or on Instagram. It’s a brand that definitely seeks to deliver on the cost-to-value ratio, and I can tell you that the Legacy Power Reserve models I was sent did not disappoint.
So let’s get into the nitty gritty now, shall we?
I had only requested the gray-dial Ultima Necat for the purposes of this review, but thankfully they sent me the blue dial, as well, because that was the one I ended up choosing to wear for the duration of my wrist-time test drive. This choice came as a surprise, since I typically don’t jive so well with blue when it comes to watches. However, the Gavox Ultima Necat in blue was just right for me, and I quite enjoyed the time I spent with it.
To be clear, all three watches have the same case, movement, and strap options, so wearability would be the same across the board for all three Gavox Legacy Power Reserve models. I preferred the flat nubuck straps to the padded and embossed leather options available, but that is just personal preference. All Gavox straps have the quick-change pin, which make it easy to swap out when in a hurry.
Will it NATO? Not really, if I’m being honest, as all three watches are most suited for leather straps. Both straight and tapered leather straps looked good on both the Carper Diem and Ultima Necat variants. Although leather looked best, I think there would be plenty of suitable straps on the market for any of the Gavox Legacy Power Reserves if you wanted to play around. I also love the way nubuck leather breaks in and weathers over time, so patience and regular wear would befit these, too.
The watches have a 41mm-diameter case with 12mm thickness and the crown at 4 o’clock. The watch is extremely wearable, and without checking I thought the blue dialed Ultima Necat I had been wearing was perhaps 39mm. I think, however, this is just due to the fact that the Ultima Necat dials are darker as compared to the white Carpe Diem.
I found the Ultima Necat won with versatility, as it could dress up or down without even changing the strap — especially that blue dial, which just went with everything. The Carpe Diem would probably be best suited for formal attire, but that’s just my two cents. Any way you slice it, these were comfortable and easy-to-wear watches.
Style + Concept
The Legacy Power Reserve series has a unique look, due to the slightly rotated Miyota 9130, which has both a date and power-reserve function. Gavox decided to borrow from two Latin phrases in the naming of the Legacy Power Reserve models: “Vulnerant omnes, ultima necat,” which means “All (hours) wound, the last one kills” and “Carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero,” which means “Seize the day, put very little trust in tomorrow.” Since the power reserve is an indicator of the life left within the mainspring, these are certainly fitting sentiments.
Each name is etched on the rotor of the corresponding model, along with the Summer Solstice, Equinox, and Winter Solstice dates. It’s nice to see that some meaning has been given to these pieces, and I’m definitely a fan of the momento mori sentiment. Perhaps that’s too grim for you, but I find it motivating. Use your time wisely! It is precious.
The blue dial has a wonderful, rich visual depth in the hue itself, sometimes looking more like black in the evening. Personally, I think this is the model to get, especially if you haven’t had a blue dial before.
All right, nerds, here’s the part you have been waiting for. (Please note: I consider myself among you.)
As noted, the Gavox Legacy Power Reserve collection utilizes a Miyota 9130 as a drivetrain. This has a 40-hour power reserve and uses 26 jewels throughout its construction.
The 41mm cases are made from 316L Stainless Steel and are outfitted with sapphire crystal, bearing a water-resistance rating of 50 meters. Both Ultima Necat models have applied hour indices and use Swiss Super-LumiNova on both the hands and the hour markers. The Carpe Diem dial displays non-luminous Roman numerals, but lume is applied to the counters at the tip of the hour and minute hands.
Prices are in Euros, so depending on exchange rates, the Ultima Necat retails for around $672 USD and the Carpe Diem for $624 USD.
If you like what you see, you can head on over to gavox.com and put together your own Legacy Power Reserve watch.
>Brand: Gavox Watch Company
>Model: Ultima Necat (& Carpe Diem)
>Size: 41mm-wide, 12.1mm-thick, 20mm lugs, and 48.8mm lug-to-lug distance.
>When reviewer would personally wear it: With jeans and a t-shirt, going out but casual (Ultima Necat)
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Someone who wants a watch for the office and casual times (Ultima Necat)
>Best characteristic of watch: That blue dial on the Ultima Necat
>Worst characteristic of watch: I found the Carpe Diem less versatile in terms of style.