Saturday, November 8, 2008

Watch News: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Survivor Chronograph

Over the last year much has been speculated by AP's ferment ROO aficionados about the final design and name of yet another very much talked about AP Special Edition ROO. Well the time has come and it's finally here! On November 6th the day of the Global Launch (sounds so sinister) all of the AP ROO faithful have gather around the world to be finally introduced to a finished product they debated about for so long.

Overall I find the finishing and many of the design cues to be very interesting and well executed in particular my surprise that I'm for once a fan of the execution of the dial which with ROO's can be IMHO very cluttered and dare I say colorfully confusing. The open worked hands and vertical grooved ceramic bezel are another two aesthetically successful details tying up the whole "sinister" design. I also liked that they successful carried on the wider non-tappered vulcanized rubber style strap first introduced on the Team Ainghi LE.

On the other hand what I don't like is cartoonish elements such as these crown guards, notched "gun barrel" rim of the crown, as well as the ratcheted case edge. Then its the usual complaint of YET another LE ROO (number 69 and counting LOL), yet another PVD'd black watch (I thought only Hublot was the company that still thinks that is something innovative) and of course lets not forget the very lame name. No secret here that I am no fanboy of ROO's altogether but c'mon AP how long can you continue following the same old ROO LE thing.

“Survivor” mission:

- Readability, functionality and high precision, the wearer is liable to find himself confronted with an unknown and hostile environment – overpopulated megalopolis, urban jungle cosmic construction sites, etc.
- High-tech architecture: ultra-light, high-resistance materials that adjust to body temperature.
- Design: ergonomic and sophisticated, genetic markers of the Royal Oak Offshore collection pushed to extremes.
- Mechanical performance: exclusive chronograph movement.

Technical specifications:

Follow this link to see the SURVIVOR MOVIE

High-tech materials:

Blackened titanium plays the starring role. This ultra-light material has been chosen for the case and the surrounding elements: studs, push pieces and guards, crown and oversize strap buckle. The same goes for the medallion back featuring a special non-slip texture.

Titanium also shows up on the lower part of the octagonal bezel, while its upper part opts for ceramics. The latter is distinguished by clearly marked vertical grooves reminiscent of the characteristic satin finish of the Royal Oak Offshore collection.

The strap is made from vulcanized rubber, an indispensable part of the extreme sports universe. Its matte black granular surface accentuates the adventurous camouflage-type look of this chronograph issued in a limited edition of 1000.

Shapes and ergonomics:

Each detail is meticulously designed to ensure a blend of efficiency and lightness. The perforations on the bezel lighten up the structure without compromising its sturdiness. The hollowed push pieces equipped with a security look ensure user-friendly handling. In a similar vein, the generous size and notched rim of the crown, as well as the ratcheted case edge, facilitate getting a quick and sure grip on this exceptional instrument. The conical shape of the push pieces guarantees instant activation of the chronograph function, while the skeleton hands, luminescent hour-markers and silver-colored small seconds counter guarantee optimal readability by day or night. And finally, since nothing is left to chance, a careful observer will note the apertures on the case middle and studs.

The Royal Oak Offshore signature features:

- Strongbox-type case water-resistant to 100 meters, with anti magnetic system designed to protect the mechanism from any hostile element
- Hexagonal socket-head screws echoing the legendary hexagonal screws of the Royal Oak Offshore models
- Exclusive “Mega Tapisserie” guilloché pattern on the dial, matched on this model by the checkered motif on the strap
- Strap perfectly integrated with the case

High-precision instrument

The Royal Oak Offshore Survivor houses the exclusive Audemars Piguet self-winding Calibre 3126/3840, guaranteeing sturdiness, reliability and precision rating:
- up to 60 hours’ power reserve thanks to a mainspring which, by supplying constant force over a longer time-span, ensures enhanced rating accuracy;
- a cross-through balance-cock reinforcing the stability of the movement;
- a balance-stop mechanism serving to immobilize the seconds hand and thus enabling time-setting to the nearest second;
- a variable-inertia balance equipped with eight inertia-blocks enabling precise and stable adjustment;
- fast date correction with an integrated security system avoiding any risk of date disc blockage when the adjustment occurs at midnight;
- bidirectional automatic winding of the mainspring by means of a 22-carat gold rotor mounted on a ball-bearing mechanism;

Technical Specifications
Royal Oak Offshore Survivor Chronograph

Limited series of 1000

Calibre: 3126/3840, self winding
Total diameter : 26 mm (11 ½ lignes)
Thickness : 7.16 mm
59 jewels
365 parts
Up to 60-hour power reserve
Cadence of the balance: 21,600 vibrations per hour
Variable-inertia type balance with eight inertia-blocks and a flag balance-spring
Geneva-type mobile balance-spring stud-holder
Three-position winding crown
Finishing: all parts decorated by hand; main plate rhodium-plated, bevelled and stippled; bridges adorned with Côtes de Genève motif

Strongbox-type case with anti magnetic system, cone-shaped pushpieces, hollowed pushpiece guards, crown, crown guard and studs in blackened titanium
Perforated ceramic bezel
Diameter: 42 mm
Thickness: 1.565 mm
Water resistance: 100 metres
Medallion back in blackened titanium with non-slip motif, titanium zone engraved with the inscription Royal Oak Offshore Survivor – Limited Edition

Matt black, exclusive “Mega Tapisserie” guilloché motif
Snailed hour circle
Luminescent open worked hour and minute hands
Luminescent applied hour-markers


Vulcanized rubber with chequered motifs and oversized buckle in blackened titanium

Hours and minutes
Small seconds
Chronograph with central sweep seconds hand, 30-minute and 12-hour counters
Tachometer scale around the flange

For more real world photos of the watch as well some excellent coverage of the Survivor launch follow the link posted by TZ's Paul Boutros of the AP NY Boutique event

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Daily thoughts, musings & interests about anything (mostly horology) that currently makes my soul & grey matter tick.