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  1. #1
    Ball Watch, Bremont and Longines moderator samanator's Avatar
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    Basel 2014

    Rob is heading out tomorrow for Basel. He will be meeting with Ball next Saturday and then has a private interview scheduled with Phillip on Sunday. Watch the Topper blog for updates.
    Last edited by samanator; March 23rd, 2014 at 04:51.
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    Michael
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  2. #2
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    Re: Basel 2014

    Cool - haven't seen a lot of pre-Basel announcements this year

  3. #3
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    Re: Basel 2014

    Great! Look forward to his reporting and PICTURES like last year.

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    Member Sparrowhawk's Avatar
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    Re: Basel 2014

    Would Rob be willing to pass on the request that cyclops date windows no longer be included in future Ball designs. I know that not everyone agrees or probably even cares, but it does not seem like Phillipe reads this forum, although I would think that he would want to.

    I am looking forward to the pictures and what Rob can share of the conversations, etc.

    Craig

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    Basel 2014

    Quote Originally Posted by Sparrowhawk View Post
    Would Rob be willing to pass on the request that cyclops date windows no longer be included in future Ball designs.
    Or at least be internal.

    Ball should not be "Rolex lite". If that's what we wanted, we would buy a Rolex or Tudor. Be different.
    Last edited by ~tc~; March 24th, 2014 at 00:45.
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    +1

    As posted by ~tc~[QUOTE]Or at least be internal./QUOTE]

    I think that is a great idea! Unique indeed.

    Does he new Cannonball II feature this....or close to it?
    Last edited by TAYHAS; March 24th, 2014 at 03:17.

  8. #7
    Ball Watch, Bremont and Longines moderator samanator's Avatar
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    Re: Basel 2014

    Quote Originally Posted by Sparrowhawk View Post
    Would Rob be willing to pass on the request that cyclops date windows no longer be included in future Ball designs. I know that not everyone agrees or probably even cares, but it does not seem like Phillipe reads this forum, although I would think that he would want to.

    I am looking forward to the pictures and what Rob can share of the conversations, etc.

    Craig
    It may surprise you but these additions actually did come from customer input. I personally like cyclops, but I would prefer they be internal like a Panerai or the Moonglow was in the past.

    To ~tc~'s point, I don't see a cyclops as being Rolex like, but I don't have a problem with Ball becoming the explorer watch that Rolex use to be. This drives innovation. That seems to be the focus Phillip is taking. Tudor is more the place for Rolex to bring to market ideas that do not fit into Rolex traditional values. Not really Rolex lite. Tudor of old was Rolex lite with past watches like the Sub that was a ETA powered Submariner.

    I can think of a few things taking to extreme being Rolex like (Magnate Chrono bezel), but nothing that is really Rolex following(How does a EHC look like any Rolex0. The New EII is an evolution of the series of features that have been in the line for many years. Many other Ball watches have moved to the rectangle tubes.

    Some newer versions of existing Ball models have lost signature features which is something that could be questioned. For Ball to grow they need to appeal to broader groups. The general public is not always tuned to what we like here on watch forums. Growth does not really come from us.
    Last edited by samanator; March 24th, 2014 at 16:11.
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  9. #8
    Member timefleas's Avatar
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    Re: Basel 2014

    I too have to admit that I used to detest Cyclops lenses on watch crystals, but over time, as eyesight has diminished, I do see value in them, at least on a few models. I also like a large date window, like on my Trainmaster Power Reserve Big Date, which I didn't use to like (I had in fact owned and sold one of these a few years ago before buying my current one). I do agree, however, that if you are going to use a Cyclops window, it really should be internal--I really dislike a bump on an otherwise pristine crystal. With that said, I am sure none of this really speaks to the current Basel show--I look forward to what Rob is able to share with us.













  10. #9
    Member Sparrowhawk's Avatar
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    Re: Basel 2014

    Fair enough, I'm happy to see innovation in the Ball development of new watches. I would not be opposed to an internal Cyclops. I had a Moonglow and liked the way it looked. I liked the backlit date function even more, and I concur with the recent statements that Ball should utilize some type of backlit date more.

    Clearly an external cyclops date window is not a step forward in innovation or technology.

    I don't think that any EHC really looks like a Rolex, and that's good. I don't have a problem with thicker or wider tubes, as long as they shine brightly. I don't have a problem with Ball filling the role that the Rolex Explorer used to fill.

    The reasons that I see an exterior cyclops window to be Rolex like is that 1) Rolex greatly utilized them and popularized them. Isn't it fair to say that Rolex use of the cyclops date window is why other brands used them so prolifically? 2) Phillip used to be with Rolex.

    Number 1 above is the strongest for me, I see an external cyclops and think Rolex, I kind of think Tag as well. Just ingrained in my head that way, I have a few watches that have external cyclops windows and none of them are Rolex, although at least one of them is Tag. I would bet that if you asked the average person on the street, one who actually knows enough about watches to recognize brands, what brand the external cyclops window reminded them of, they would say Rolex.

    When I see an external date window on a watch it screams early '80s to me. Clearly, an external cyclops date window is not a step forward in technology, design, or even fashion. I am not saying that the date on a watch should not be magnified, just that Ball doesn't need to do it using an external cyclops date window.

    We all fall into the trap of doing things a certain way because we have done it that way before, whether it be for the sake of tradition, or just that we are stuck in a rut, or because it's what we know and it's easier. I don't have anything against Phillip personally, but if Ball is going to be seen as a brand that is moving into the future, it should not do so by implementing an old, and frankly ugly, technology just because it has been used before and is an easy choice.

    If you remember the GM commercial, "This is not your father's Oldsmobile". The contrast of that is what comes to my mind when I see that Ball is making watches with external cyclops date windows, "This is your father's Ball watch".

    So, let's have some innovation with regards to magnifying the date. Surely, a more innovative, and frankly better looking solution would appeal even more to a greater and broader audience.

    BTW, I am not saying that Ball should abandon designing and manufacturing vintage inspired watches. I have a Trainmaster Cannonball and it is one of my favorite watches. But for me, the 70's and 80's aren't really vintage. I have watches that look like that and I'm not looking for my next Ball to look like that. I am not saying that 1 or 2 Ball watches can't have an external cyclops window, that would be fine, but it is beginning to look like a standard feature.

    If Ball wants to appeal to a more broad potential customer base they should keep the quality, become more innovative, (or keep the innovation coming), have some even lower priced models and some higher priced ones with in house movements, and offer some models with brushed cases instead of polishing, (full case and bracelet brushed titanium please).

    So yes, it does surprise me that the external cyclops date window inclusion arouse out of customer input. How many customers? How was the data gathered? I know other brands, often micro brands post design suggestions and choices on forums here on WatchuSeek. True, it's a limited audience, but maybe Ball should do the same.

    I look forward to seeing some great new designs in Ball's presentations at Basel in Rob's post.

    Craig



    Quote Originally Posted by samanator View Post
    It may surprise you but these additions actually did come from customer input. I personally like cyclops, but I would prefer they be internal like a Panerai or the Moonglow was in the past.

    To ~tc~'s point, I don't see a cyclops as being Rolex like, but I don't have a problem with Ball becoming the explorer watch that Rolex use to be. This drives innovation. That seems to be the focus Phillip is taking. Tudor is more the place for Rolex to bring to market ideas that do not fit into Rolex traditional values. Not really Rolex lite. Tudor of old was Rolex lite with past watches like the Sub that was a ETA powered Submariner.

    I can think of a few things taking to extreme being Rolex like (Magnate Chrono bezel), but nothing that is really Rolex following(How does a EHC look like any Rolex0. The New EII is an evolution of the series of features that have been in the line for many years. Many other Ball watches have moved to the rectangle tubes.

    Some newer versions of existing Ball models have lost signature features which is something that could be questioned. For Ball to grow they need to appeal to broader groups. The general public is not always tuned to what we like here on watch forums. Growth does not really come from us.

  11. #10
    Ball Watch, Bremont and Longines moderator samanator's Avatar
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    Re: Basel 2014

    If you look at the watches that have come out during Phillips time at Ball there are 4 models out of more than 60 that have cyclops lenses. If you remove the new EII since it is a progression of a line that was in place before his time there is even less reason for concern and it's hardly a trend. Maybe Basel will prove that belief wrong. I'd be happier to see a pure Ball solution like the extended use of the patented Moonglow date or the Cannonball's window lens. Like Peter I also like big date watches. For those that chastise Ball's use of the staggered day /date like on the CE and Skindiver, they should note there is less of a chance for a cyclops on the date with that configuration. Now if Trainmasters gain fluted bezels then I would agree things have gone too far.
    Last edited by samanator; March 25th, 2014 at 13:38.
    Michael
    BALL Watch, Bremont and Longines Moderator


    My wife buys dogs and I buy watches and to date I have never stepped in watch poop!

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