Slideshow: 15 photos to see this watch from every angle.
A story of hands
The range Master Collection enriches itself with a not common model since it does not have less than four retrograde hands – which principle is to come back to its initial position with a leap, once their path done.
For instance thus, the little second hand, which display is in arc of circle at 6 o'clock, comes back to zero instantly after having reached 60, making consequently the watch very animated and play.
You could besides think that the presence of these four retrograde hands, to which are added the central hands of hours and minutes, overloads the dial.
And yet, the dial is remarkably well balanced, the indications being written on arcs of circles that are, at the same time, discreet, readable and very harmoniously displayed.
A watch with a classic design
Esthetically, this Longines highlights the register of classicism, not to say almost vintage, with its guilloche worked-dial and its blued leaf-shaped hands, its old-styled font for the numbers and a totally mirror polished finishing for the case.
Consequently, it is a very smart watch, albeit a little bit thick for this range.
Wisely, the drawings of the case, the bezel and the lugs, all rounded, allow to this Longines to keep a nice elegance.
The movement and the functionality
As far as the movement is concerned, Longines, with this L.698.2 caliber, has drawn from the “organ bank” of the Swatch Group, without being satisfied with a mere movement interlocking.
The basis is indeed the Valgranges A07.171, a variation of the Valjoux 7750, cleared of its chronograph's functions.
But this one has been deeply modified in order to offer four retrograde hands as well as a true GMT function – and not the simple display of a second time zone.
Indeed, the crown at three o'clock, pulled to the first notch, allows settling the hour's hand (back and forth) independently from the minute's hand – in the same capacity as a Rolex GMT-Master II, the reference in the field.
Hence, it is not necessary to reset your Longines each time you change time zone.
Therefore, we understand better why the push button at 10 o'clock and allowing the reset of the GMT indication – readable on the arc of circle displayed between 7 and 11 o'clock – is screwed on: it prevents from modifying the indication of the reference hour by accident. Well done!
The finishing of this caliber is well manufactured, with a grained finishing of every bottom plates.
But the transparent back was not essential.
Indeed, the caliber is far more interesting to use than to watch working, the complication being anyway invisible.
The folding strap is fine and elegant.
But the strap is a bit dull compared to the case, its appearance giving the impression of low range.
A pity, but not prohibitive: you can always change a leather strap!
Eventually, this Longines Master Collection Retrograde is very endearing because its complications are at the same time useful, well conceived and very funny to see working.
You will appreciate its classicism, boosted by an original design and a smooth price.
- an animated and play watch with a classic design
- an intelligently and practically modified caliber
- a good value for money
- a case a little thick for a smart watch
- the quality of the strap
- journalist's wrist = 17,5 cm
- brand Internet website: Longines
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