One question friends constantly ask me is where can they buy a decent mechanical timepiece for under $2,000. A few years ago I would have hesitated to answer but now I am delighted to say there is a pretty good range to choose from. Ultimately this has motivated me to write more in depth reviews showcasing timepieces in this price range. A few good examples are the Archimede Pilot 42 Bronze Automatic, The Melbourne Watch Company Flinders and the Choisi Suisse Heritage Docteurgraph. There is also a striking range of timepieces available from Swiss brand SevenFriday.
When I first wrote about SevenFriday in April last year (2013) the company was just starting to gather momentum. At that stage co-owner Dan Neiderer was pretty easy to contact. In fact we had a few in depth Skype conversations and Dan explained the philosophy behind the brand. Within a relatively short space of time the company has grown exponentially. They now have retailers/distributors throughout the world including places like Australia, Singapore and Hawaii. From speaking to numerous contacts in the industry they all agree what Dan has achieved (in a relatively short space of time) really is a master class in proactive marketing.
When SevenFriday originally exploded onto the watch market, many pundits made comparisons with other brands. There is no doubt that Hautlence and Ladoire have influenced Dan Neiderer. However these watchmakers are targeting a completely different demographic and are several times the price. Ironically now people are commentating on the similarity between Dietrich 1969’s Organic Time Companion Model A, which I feel is totally unwarranted. It is also pertinent to mention Ancon’s attractive X-35 Concept that appears to be a hybrid of both SevenFriday and Linde Werdilin timepieces.
Originally SevenFriday released three variants based on the same design, the P1/P2 and P3. Later the company introduced other timepieces with different colour/textured animation rings. In my opinion the P1/Bright and P3-2 Riviera are the most accomplished. I feel that later models with brighter colours are less effective and look a bit gimmicky. After a lot of anticipation the brand have unveiled a second original timepiece called the M1/1.
Visually, I feel the new M1/1 has a really bold and distinctive appearance. Although the timepiece has adopted the same generic SevenFriday 47mm x 47.6mm stainless steel case the general aesthetic is completely different. What makes this watch stand out is the multi-layered dial, which has been inspired by turbine engines. Three rotating discs cleverly display the hours, minutes and seconds. Overall I love the three dimensional composition and the attention to detail is first rate.
At the heart of the watch is a customized Japanese Miyota 82S7 21-jewel self-winding movement. I hoped that after two years SevenFriday would upgrade all their watches and employ a Swiss made caliber. As I have mentioned in previous articles I have confronted Dan with my thoughts and he is considering using Swiss mechanisms for future models. Functionally the M1/1 features hours, minutes, seconds and a power reserve of 45 hours.
The M1/1 has a high quality black leather strap with matching stainless steel buckle. Priced at: 1,197 CHF (approximately $1,338).
For more information visit the company’s website: http://www.sevenfriday.com