A symbol of luxury and status; that is how Rolex watches are perceived. Although more commonly associated with luxury, wearing a Rolex can mean different things. If you bought one for yourself, it is a reward and a statement of your achievements. If you received it as a gift, it means you are extremely special to the giver. And if it was handed down to you, it means it is a tradition.
Known for their luxurious value, the chronometric precision of Rolex watches is legendary. These two reasons alone would be enough for anyone to want to own a Rolex. Here is a comparison of three of the most popular Rolex watch ranges to help you decide which one you should aim for.
In horological history, Rolex definitely achieved a lot of firsts. When it was launched in 1945, the Rolex Datejust was noted for something extraordinary. It was the first ever wristwatch to have an automatically changing date function. Then in 1954, Rolex again launched another marvel in the horological world. The Rolex Submariner was showcased at the Baselworld Watch Fair. The Submariner guaranteed water resistance up to a depth of 100 meters or 330 feet. And it was the first wristwatch to achieve that. Years later, Rolex launched another widely popular range. The first of the three series of the Rolex Cosmagraph Daytona was formally launched in 1963.
The first model of the Rolex Datejust was available only in 18k gold. Now, the Datejust is available in various models made of different materials like steel, steel and gold, yellow gold, pink gold, white gold and platinum. For the Rolex Submariner, you can choose from steel and yellow gold, steel, white gold, and yellow gold.
In general, bezels on a watch function to ensure the case are watertight. It also firmly affixes the crystal to the case. Rolex being Rolex, the bezels on Rolex watches were given functionality. If you are planning to buy a Rolex but are unsure which model to get, looking at the bezel would help you decide which one is appropriate for your intended use.
The current models of Rolex Datejust come in three different bezel types – smooth bezel, fluted bezel, and gem-set bezel. On the other hand, the distinguishing feature of a Submariner is its graduated rotatable Cerachrom bezel. This movable bezel enables divers to monitor their diving times and decompression stops. As for the Daytona models, its iconic tachymeter bezel, which allows the wearer to measure average speeds, is what made it so popular with racecar drivers in the first place.
A watch bracelet not only works to strap the watch on to your wrist, it’s also a fashion style. Rolex watches combine both functional use and aesthetics with their unique bracelets. The Datejust was originally produced with a signature Jubilee bracelet. Now you can choose to have one with an Oyster bracelet, a President bracelet or for a more luxurious feel, a gem-set bracelet. On the other hand, current models of the Submariner all come with the signature Oyster bracelet, although you have choices of models in single and two-toned bracelets. Of the three ranges, the Daytona is the only that comes with a model that has an Oysterflex bracelet, made of a very durable material built to withstand the rough environment racecar drivers often find themselves in.
The current Datejust models come in three different sizes – small, mid, and large size. The small model case can either be 28 or 31mm, while for the middle-sized case, it is 36mm, and the large-sized models have cases of 41mm. Because of its smaller size, the Datejust is often recommended for women. All the current Submariner models came with a case size of 40mm. The same is true for the latest Daytona models.
The dial is the face of the clock that contributes much to its aesthetics. If you’re choosing from the Datejust range, you might have a hard time selecting which one to buy as there are more models to choose from, compared to the Submariner or Daytona. For the Datejust, you can choose a light or dark dial, a diamond-paved dial, or even a colored dial. Color choices for the dial include blue, pink, gold, light blue and olive green. For the submariner, the dials come in more basic colors like black, blue and green. It’s also fun to choose a dial style from the Daytona range, as there are many exciting choices. The Daytona has three sub-dials, allowing more fun combinations of colors. You can choose a model with a champagne-color and black dial, or a regular white dial with gold markers, or you can get pink and black dial.
The movement, or caliber, of a watch is basically what makes the watch function as a watch. It is the clockwork mechanism enclosed within the case. Sounds simple, but Rolex takes pride in the precision of its watches, so the movement inside Rolex watches is extra special.
For the Datejust range, the movement varies with the model. The Datejust 41, for example, has a 3235 movement, which was developed and manufactured by Rolex to ensure the highest level of performance. On the other hand, the Lady Datejust 28 has a 2236 movement, which is another new generation movement that was developed and manufactured by Rolex. In the Submariner and Submariner Date models, you will typically find a 3130 or a 3135 movement. Both the movements were developed to offer greater resistance to shocks and changes in temperatures. The Daytona is equipped with a 4130 movement, a technology developed by Rolex for a movement that is perpetual, self-winding, and with a mechanical chronograph.
Each Rolex model has its own charms, from its precision to its design and its added functionality. Any Rolex watch is definitely worth its weight in gold; a statement of how far the luxury watchmaker company has gone since the early 1900’s, and of how much they have achieved in horological technology.