Cheap Cartier Replica has made it pretty clear that the Calibre case is going to enjoy a lot of life. It has served as the base for everything from mainstream luxury to ultra-high-end Cartier models, and continues to have a promising future as Cartier currently prefers the Calibre as their premier men’s model. One of my personal favorite aspects of the Calibre is that no one has ever referred to it as “unisex.” Many Cartier timepieces have that fluid sense of French polish that makes them good enough for a man, but appropriate for a woman. The Calibre is “all dude.” Earlier in 2013 the collection was extended with the Calibre Chronograph model.
I was pretty happy with the original Calibre Cartier Replica when Cartier released it in 2010. Later, I offered an aBlogtoWatch hands-on review of the Calibre here. What many people don’t recall is that Cartier chose the Calibre as the first watch to house their in-house made movement known as the caliber 1904MC. This wasn’t their first in-house made movement – Cartier started with ultra-luxury stuff a few years before. The 1904MC was not only a new movement, but meant to be the base of many future movements. Designed to be flexible, the 1904MC is what all in-house movement-based Cartier timepieces contain. So here it is with a chronograph. In the Calibre Chronograph, the movement is known as the 1904-CH MC.
The 1904-CH MC automatic is similar to the pure base movement without the chronograph module but with a slightly different dial layout as well as a 30 minute chronograph offered in a bi-compax layout. Frequency is 28,800 bph and the power reserve is 48 hours. It also has the date located at 6 o’clock. The enduring controversial element of the Calibre’s dial design is the “open” date window. I have to admit this design feature looks much worse on some other Cartier Replica Watches, but it sticks out as something offered purely to be quirky.
I’ve heard two things about the chronograph sub dials. Some people believe that the dials are too close together, and others really appreciate their positioning because it allows for a relatively unobstructed view of the hour markers which allow for optimal legibility. Who do I agree with? Well both I suppose. Legibility is rather good but with the ring around the sub dials, their placement toward the middle of the dial is perhaps too emphasized. Having said all that, I love the symmetry of the dial and feel that compared to the original Cheap Replica Watches dial the Chronograph is much better balanced and appears more comfortable. So while it perhaps isn’t the world’s most perfect dial, it is nice and attractive enough to proudly bear the Cartier name.
Cheap Cartier Replica unveiled a few highly complicated novelties at the 2014 SIHH. Of them we have already discussed the Rotonde de Cartier Earth and Moon Tourbillon and now Ariel has gone hands-on with another tourbillon known as the Rotonde de Cartier Astrocalendaire. The two pieces share several key features: both display the hours and minutes on an off-centered sub dial, both are housed in the same Rotonde de Cartier platinum case – save for two millimeters of difference in diameter – and both are equipped with one-minute tourbillons.
Similarities end right there, however, as both novelties offer a very different approach to catching the hearts – and wallets – of the fans of unique complications. The Cartier Replica Astrocalendaire’s main feature has to be the multi-tier, concentrically laid out perpetual calendar. As fancy as that sounds, the result is stunningly straight-forward: situated just off the very centre of the watch, three rings are surrounding the flying tourbillon, with each one of them dedicated to the indication of the day of the week, the month and the date, respectively. Owing to this configuration – reminiscent of ancient Roman amphitheaters – Cartier Replica Watches perpetual calendar offers legibility that few other watch do.
On all three tiers the exact date is marked by blued brackets that seem to float over the rings’ markings. Reading information from the three tiers and their rectangular frames does suffer in some poor lighting conditions, but the way the rings are stacked so close together makes for a quicker and easier reading compared to most other calendar watches. Having said that, one indication is missing – although it may not be instantly obvious even for those with a weak spot for this complication -, which is the display of leap years. Visible through the transparent case back, the leap and non-leap years are indicated by a hand set on one of the movement’s bridges.
Unusually suppressed by other elements – but positioned in the center of attention nonetheless – is the flying tourbillon, sporting the well-known capital “C” on its bridge. The in-house designed and manufactured movement, titled 9459 MC, is actually assembled in Cheap Replica Watches haute horlogerie workshop in Geneva and so it is qualified for the Geneva Seal. Since 2011, the Seal not only serves as a testament to the movement’s origin and the quality of its finishing, but also includes a test of timekeeping performance. To pass the test, which is a simulation of a full week’s wearing of the Replica Watches, the movement is allowed to reach a maximum final deviation of 60 seconds by the end of the 7th day. That, though less stringent than the COSC requirements, still is fairly demanding to highly complicated watches – which the Astrocalendaire undoubtedly is.