I didn’t have the nicest things to say about the last Vulcain Diver X-Treme watch that I talked about. I mean, I liked how the watch looked, but seriously doubted how “extreme” it was. That has pretty much all changed with this new Vulcain Diver X-Treme Limited Edition watch, that blows me out of the… water. Really I love not only the looks of this watch but the honestly extreme amount of engineering that went into it. If you like luxury dive watches and want something from a more interesting watch company, this is a strong contender for your attention.
One of the things I talked about with the other Vulcain Diver X-Treme regarded the alarm. Well I am not sure if enhancements have been made or Vulcain is simply discussing it more openly, but the case of the new Automatic limited edition X-Treme is specially made in a few layers of metal to help enhance the sound of the alarm specifically so that it can be heard underwater. Basically they claim that the three layers of steel and titanium make it possible to hear the alarm underwater down to 100 meters. Not sure if there is a difference in acoustics in the water at 100 meters or 10 meters, but it s a pretty good thing to know about a diving watch with an alarm. Remember to SURFACE!
The movement providing the alarm is the new automatic Vulcain Cricket v-21. Special about this movement is that it is an automatic. You have to realize that this was probably a difficult task given the fact that the rotor might function to dampen the sounds of the alarm acoustics. I find that all good diver’s watches should be automatics and that a manually-wound diver’s watch these days is not really suited for “extreme” labeling. So good things this limited edition is an automatic, while the previous version was not. The movement also is adjusted in a different way than you are used to. The crown on the right side of the case is used for setting the time and the alarm. There is a pusher above it that you depress to make the same crown be used for setting the alarm versus setting the time. To adjust the date, there is a pusher on the left side of the case with a little safety clasp over it labeled “date.” The clasp is there to make sure that you don’t accidentally adjust the date when you are not supposed to, and Vulcain was clever to label it as the date pusher as that is not its obvious use. As for the alarm, when operating it last for about 15-20 seconds. Not sure why the time various, but it probably has to do with what time the alarm is set to go off at and the internal mechanics of the movement.
The dial of the Diver X-Treme Automatic is very luxurious looking. Nicely applied hour markers in various colors (especially those metallic blue ones on the lighter dial color). The hands are large and clear. There is a nicely sloped chapter ring with the minutes on it and there are no superfluous markers on the dial even though there is a lot going on – a good mix between style and function. The hour markers and hands are further applied with SuperLumiNova as luminant which is good. I really like how the date window was inserted to make it look like part of the 6 o’clock hour marker – pretty smooth. Overall the dial is what I could expect from a quality diver watch costing in excess of $8,000.
A lot of the appeal comes from the good looking case. It is 44mm wide, 54mm tall, and a massive 18.4mm thick! Awesome. The case is make out of two metals. Mixing steel or 18k rose gold with titanium. Each of the model styles looks good, and I believe there are a few more than are pictured. On the top is the marketing photo of the watch from Vulcain, and the rest of the watch shots are taken of the actual models by Ernie Romers over at WatchUSeek.com while he was at Basel. I like that the timepieces look good in reality as well as mere concept. The only non extreme feature of the watch is that it is not not an uber-rugged diver only having 100 meter of water resistance. That is probably OK though, because if you were to actually do diving with it – you could subject it to light depths and such with no problems. Last, the watch is matched to a cool looking rubber diver’s strap or calf leather strap – both with matching folding deployments. As cool as this watch is, it will likely be pricey. Retail is probably over $10,000. Plus it will only be limited to 150 pieces. Going to be a fascinating collectors watch and an overall nice diver from Swiss Vulcain.
Photograph credits to Ernie Romers of WatchUSeek.com – link here.See Vulcain watches on Amazon here. [phpbay]vulcain, num, “14324”, “”[/phpbay]