Top positive review
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Nice - but short on a few points - a wall clock on your wrist! Cool!
on July 22, 2012
I own a number of watches --- it's a sort of "illness," and if you have it you'll understand --- and my collection ranges to pieces that cost well over ten times as much as this did. (I pre-purchased at below this price.)
If you like Luminox you will love this one. Mostly. Probably.
If you like "luminoxes" (and I do) then you like "luminoxes." But that does not mean that you have to like Luminox --- and I don't. Good luck trying to get an answer to an email, technical clarification, or any other information --- four shots, zero back.
How does it run? Four weeks, second hand still a bingo match to the atomic time clock I have. Again, the only other watch I have that will hold under 30 seconds per year (yes, year) is a Breitling Aerospace.
If you're wondering whether or not you can operate the chronograph push-pieces (buttons) while immersed --- so am I. No answer, either in the manual, or from Lummox. (I have one watch that has buttons rated to full 1000m (no typo) depth; but that's extreme (there's only one made like that) and I'll never come close to that.)
It is a substantial, heavy build with a strong, solid-link stainless steel bracelet. The bezel is polycarbonate, with very bright minute numerals and a crisp, solid ratchet. This watch wears like a wall clock --- it is unambiguous and "loud" in its readability. That's what it's designed for. It's not "elegant." One might say it's the antithesis of Movado. It's like wearing something from a submarine bulkhead on your wrist --- which I like.
My experience with Luminox has been that they are more accurate than most quartz watches. (I have an older one that is only slightly less accurate than a Breitling Aerospace.) If you refused to adjust it for a year, I doubt it would be off by more than a minute.
The hour markers, bezel index, and hour and minute hands have the trademark tritium-filled microtubules that make a Luminox, well, a Luminox. From bright day to mid-light to dim light to complete darkness, the time readout (especially on this black-and-white piece) is glance-readable.
The push-pieces (buttons) and crown are extraordinarily well-shielded by the case shoulders and the bracelet horns. The buttons have just enough "two-stage" feel to make them solid, and are crisp enough to make them foolproof. The lap function is continuable, which is a less frequent feature. (You can start, freeze first time, freeze second time, then continue, as opposed to a forced reset.
For a heavy watch, it's pretty comfortable. If you're not accustomed to industrial-grade, manhole-style chronos, this will take some getting used to. It's worth it. (A long-time suggestion: If the watch feels bulky, sleep with it on. Your hand and arm will do the adjusting for you. Really.) If you want to shed some weight and gain some security if you SCUBA, a 22mm NATO strap (thinnish on the material, so the spring bars don't bend) works perfectly on this watch.
So --- I like it. But ...?
Ah, well. On to the picky things.
If you're expecting to be able to read the small seconds, chrono minutes, and chrono hours in the dark after 20 minutes --- guess again. For some reason that escapes me entirely, Luminox have taken a raw, blatant, functional watch and put little teensy-weensy elegant little tiny sub-dial hands on this watch --- when bolder "deltas" with plenty of lume would have been waaaaay more functional. As for the sub-dials, the concentric-ring finish can baffle you at some angles, making the actual position of the teensy-weensy hands hard to see at a glance. Yes, they do glow. A little. For a while. And yes, they really are very functional. And YES, it IS a 12-hour (not a useless 30-minute) chrono.
Next on the "phooey list" --- the chrono second sweep hand. The tritium capsule is gone from here. I suppose that was a cost consideration, but a dumb one, in my opinion.
One last swipe --- my second hand was not registered properly. No, I'm not talking about reset-to-zero after battery change --- it's off by a half-second. I'll probably send it in, since it really is a pain.
(UPDATE: Took awhile, got a full replacement, all of the hands register correctly.)
Having said all this, I'll add that within two weeks two people have asked me where I got it --- one, a doctor, and another, a wine-tasting employee. Broad appeal, I guess.
My final comment: it really is a great watch (or seems to be) for the price range. Yes, some folks feel that $100 is a lot for a watch, and I understand that. If you have the cash and you're a little nuts, a few grand doesn't shake you --- like I said, it's an illness. But here, Luminox has taken a solid, proven, and nicely-improved concept --- and dropped a couple of teensy-weensy little tiny balls. Oh, well.
I still like it. When I get my Breitling Blackbird back from its (costs-more-than-this-watch) overhaul, this will make a more-than-excellent "beater watch."