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Old 12 November 2013, 08:19 AM   #1
avusblue
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A "softer side" review of the SubC

Well, I’ve been enjoying my newest favorite watch: the Rolex ref. 114060 No-Date Submariner with Ceramic bezel (I’ll call it the “SubC” from here on out). Volumes have already been written about this piece -- which I’m convinced will become a future classic. So what can I add? Probably not much, as far as facts and figures are concerned. So I will instead attempt to share some of my “feelings” and “soft side” impressions of the SubC, versus posting a review focused on the hard facts.



My 114060 is my 16th Rolex, and a 14060 was my very first Rolex. So the no-date Sub has a special place in my heart. I had a longtime interest in the new, upgraded model, but never really acted on it. But a couple weeks ago, my favorite AD, Wixon’s Jewelers here in Minnesota, held their annual “Watch Fair” event. I attended and tried on the watch -- and confirmed that I loved it. I already was influenced because one of my good friends has the Date version of the SubC, and I’d tried his on a number of times. But I was pleased and surprised by the aggressive trade-in offer Wixon’s made for the Omega Speedmaster I came into the store wearing. I made a spontaneous decision on the spot to trade up and acquire the SubC, and am very pleased that I did. I love everything about this watch, and am so grateful to own it. The piece has gotten 100% of my everyday wrist time since acquiring it, and I do not see that changing. I told my wife a few Friday nights ago, I'm still in the mode of looking at my wrist and exclaiming "I can't believe it's really mine!"



Why the No-Date version, versus the Date? To me, I just prefer the crisp, natural symmetry of the cleaner, simpler dial, and the lack of the visual distraction that the cyclops adds. I also find that the no-date version doesn’t scream “ROLEX!” nearly as much to nearby observers. It just says “rolex” in a normal voice…. ☺



The SubC is turning out to pretty much be the perfect watch to me. Toss aside trying to catalog a logical list of pros and cons, -- and looking at pictures online just don’t convey this – but the SubC is just intoxicating. I do not know how Rolex does it . . . . but this watch just possesses a secret sauce / magic pixie dust that somehow manages to brainwash us watch-loving types and reduce us to blubbering desire for the piece. It is just the definitional standard for the perfect, ultimate, men’s sports watch. The benchmark against which all others are judged. Consider everything the SubC provides:

• Looks phenomenal on the wrist.

• Quality to savor. Impeccable fit & finish.

• Classic, enduring design that's beautiful to behold and enjoyable to gaze upon.

• The upgraded bracelet and clasp is as good as it gets in all of watchdom.

• Comfortable -- I've used the Glidelock feature many times as my wrist has varied due to weather and physical activity. The SubC is indeed a bold, heavy watch, but when you can instantly adjust the fit to be always perfectly tailored for the size of your wrist “right now”, it mitigates the feeling of bulk. The size and weight melts away. (In my opinion, this is one of Omega’s biggest weaknesses -- the lack of quick adjust capability on the bracelets, short of adding / removing links).

• Accurate. This watch is running about half second fast per week. Not per day – per week! That's not just good, that's freak-of-nature good. I'm thrilled, because that's important to me and my enjoyment of a watch.

• Tough and Robust. The SubC can go along to do anything I do.

• Useful (timer bezel and great lume).

• A tactile pleasure to handle: the large crown is an absolute joy to unscrew and manipulate, the clasp release is pure lusciousness, and the rotating bezel action just may provide the most delectable, tactile pleasure possible by any watch function whatsoever.

• The bracelet end links. These are the tightest fitting, most razor sharp, best integrated solid end links I've ever seen. They don't even look like they are separate from the case. I thought the Grand Seiko end links were as good as they could get (and they indeed are damned great), but these are just incredible.

• The 904L steel, and its exquisite finishing, produces an inexplicable lustrous glow in natural daylight that defies logic.












Regarding the price. The SubC is an expensive watch (by my standards, at least), but after living with the quality, the high price actually does seem worth it. I think it is actually a solid value. And this value becomes even more apparent when I consider the astonishing accuracy performance.

In conclusion: I’m lovin’ the Sub-C. As I said earlier, I've owned a couple other examples of the 14060/14060M along the collecting journey, so I know that watch well. But the new SubC is a significant advance. The quality amazes. The look is classically timeless. The bracelet and clasp are phenomenal, and the comfort is supreme. I am appreciating what an aesthetic treat the ceramic bezel is, with its color shifting, sometimes-black-sometimes-graphite tone and the recessed silverized markings. Somehow, this up-to-the-moment modern watch still seems to have an uncanny, warm, vintagey charm. It's fun to look at and fun to wear, and I catch it in my glance and "smile on the inside" quite often.



To sum it all up, let me reference the following image of an old Rolex sales brochure that was posted recently on Jake’s Rolex World. This document is over thirty years old, and yet, is just as current and relevant as when it was published. I just love this and agree with all the sentiments:



Quality. Prestige. Visual Appeal. The SubC earns an “A” on all counts.

Side note. As a happy owner of the Grand Seiko SBGX061, I’ve come to believe that GS quality of fit and finish is the best I’ve ever seen. So, stacking up the SubC versus Grand Seiko is a natural comparison. I actually am a little surprised that I have come to believe the Rolex is, overall, superior. That's a bold statement, when the Grand Seiko is so recognized for its fine hand finishing. And while its quality is unquestionably impeccable, GS craftsmanship reflects more of a human element. Its dial, not to mention those handcrafted hands and markers, just sing in a different key than the machine produced Rolex equivalents: the GS shows real personality while still achieving perfection. And yet. The SubC's elements are no less perfectly made; they’re just less detailed, and obviously not hand finished. But look at them under a strong loupe, and you see that the quality is 100 percent flawless. Not 99.8 percent: 100. The execution: perfect. Therefore, even though the Rolex is mass produced, I think in its perfectly manufactured homogeneity, it is equally impressive. And when moving beyond the hands and dial, I believe the design and the execution of the bracelet, clasp, crown, and yes, even the quality of the case finishing appears superior on the Rolex. I’m not selling out the Grand Seiko; it is beautifully crafted and definitely seems worth its price as well. And, hey remember, the GS costs a lot less than the Rolex. So, in honesty, it probably represents the better value. Here’s a couple “artsy B&W” photos of the duo side-by-side with another core element of my collection, the mighty Casio GW-5000:





So there you have it. The SubC is a joy to own and wear. The watch is a winner, and a keeper, in my book. Why did I wait so long??

Cheers, and thanks for reading,

Dave

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Old 12 November 2013, 08:32 AM   #2
Psmith
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Great review and photos, thanks
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Old 12 November 2013, 08:35 AM   #3
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Yes, great review, layout, and photos... Thanks for the detail in your review, and the time and effort in posting it.

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Old 12 November 2013, 08:38 AM   #4
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A very professional review! Excellent
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Old 12 November 2013, 08:46 AM   #5
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Thoroughly enjoyed that Dave, thanks for posting!!
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Old 12 November 2013, 09:11 AM   #6
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Thanks for the incredibly thoughtful review. I agree 100% with everything you said.
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Old 12 November 2013, 09:29 AM   #7
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That's awesome. Thanks for the great write up.
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Old 12 November 2013, 10:44 AM   #8
knoffie
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Sub C review

What a great review and pics Dave. Well done ...Its so good to read how someone loves their Sub.

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Old 12 November 2013, 01:23 PM   #9
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nice review. Glad you like your watch!
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Old 12 November 2013, 01:25 PM   #10
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Very eloquently written. A delightful read!
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Old 12 November 2013, 01:47 PM   #11
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Awesome review. I am very enthusiastic about my SubC that has been on my wrist exclusively since December 2012. Almost a full year with no other competition aside from my Casio GPS I use for running.

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Old 12 November 2013, 02:19 PM   #12
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Great review and photos.
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Old 12 November 2013, 03:08 PM   #13
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Great review and photos!
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Old 12 November 2013, 04:17 PM   #14
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Very nice!
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Old 12 November 2013, 04:48 PM   #15
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Congratulations on your SubC. Great review. I share your sentiments.
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Old 12 November 2013, 06:23 PM   #16
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Congrats,I can feel the passion that animate you.
Thanks for sharing,enjoy your beatiful watch!
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Old 12 November 2013, 10:03 PM   #17
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Nice Review. I agree and love my 114060.
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Old 12 November 2013, 10:20 PM   #18
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Old 13 November 2013, 12:21 AM   #19
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Great review. Makes me appreciate mine more.
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Old 13 November 2013, 07:05 AM   #20
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Beautiful pics! Amazing watch!
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Old 13 November 2013, 09:42 PM   #21
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Icon14 I agree!

I totally agree !! I love my 114060, Amazing watch. A true classic.

Bellissimo !
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Old 13 November 2013, 11:49 PM   #22
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fantastic reviews...
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Old 13 November 2013, 11:52 PM   #23
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Nice write up
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Old 13 November 2013, 11:59 PM   #24
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Great review. I think most people however look at Seiko as a general good value watch. Most don't even know about the Grand Seiko.
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Old 14 November 2013, 05:26 AM   #25
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Great write up and yes turning the bezel is as delicious as you describe!
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Old 16 November 2013, 07:56 AM   #26
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Great review! Pleased to see someone so pleased with their rolly!
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Old 17 November 2013, 09:45 PM   #27
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Thanks for sharing your thoughts, you may have just sold me on one...
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Old 18 November 2013, 09:26 AM   #28
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great review. that GS looks great as well!
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Old 18 November 2013, 11:11 AM   #29
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Nice review You did that watch justice with it
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Old 20 November 2013, 08:06 PM   #30
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Fantastic write up. Thanks for taking the time to do it.
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