Panerai Luminor Submersible 1950 3 Days Chrono Flyback Automatic Titanio 47 mm

PANERAI_PAM00614_FRONT-1200PANERAI_PAM00615_FRONT-1200Panerai’s watches reflect the brand’s maritime heritage, and also their Italian origins. One of the hallmarks of Italy and Italians is their design flair, and their brilliance at designing wide open spaces – vast cathedrals, gigantic piazzas – in which the real beauty comes from the sense of space and the way in which that emptiness is managed. The same is true of Panerai. Even when a watch has a complication that would invite intricate details and subdials with busy scales, they resist the temptation and attain a beautiful minimalist simplicity that sets them apart from virtually everyone else.

This is particularly true of the Luminor Submersible 1950 3 Days Chrono Flyback Automatic Titanio 47 mm (their dials may be minimalist, their watch names are certainly not!), a flyback chronograph available in two versions, with rotating bezel in titanium or black ceramic – the latter version also has an extra subdial for chronograph hours. They are both technically diving watches, with unidirectional rotating bezel, visibly different hour and minute hands, applied luminous dots and Arabic numerals for legibility underwater and in low light conditions, black rubber strap, and water resistance at 300 metres. The shape of the 47 mm shape reflects the famous 1956 Egyptian, made for the Egyptian Navy.

PAM00614, entirely in brushed titanium

The dial is commendable for its simplicity. Instead of placing a minutes chronograph subdial, Panerai added another central-sweep hand, so that chronograph seconds are shown by the blue hand on a scale marked with one-second intervals, and chronograph minutes by the rhodium-plated hand. The effect is one of great readability. The minutes hand proceeds in steps of one minute: it only moves at the end of an elapsed minute. The continuous seconds subdial at 9 o’clock shows a diver that the watch is working, and there is a date window at 3 o’clock. The two chronograph pushers are at 8 and 10 o’clock: the pusher at 10 o’clock starts and stops the chronograph, and the pusher at 8 o’clock resets the stopped chronograph to zero, or, if it is pressed while the chronograph is running, instantaneously resets and restarts the chronograph (the flyback function).


P.9100 movement

The watch is powered by the P.9100 calibre, the brand’s first in-house chronograph calibre. It has the classic features of a high-end chronograph, with vertical clutch and column wheel. Two barrels connected in series provide a 3-day power reserve (72 hours). The watch has the stop-seconds function (hacking seconds) that stops the balance wheel so that the second hand can be synchronized with a time signal. The hour hand can be adjusted by one-hour increments without affecting the minute hand, useful when you are travelling from one time zone to another. The watch has a solid caseback with the manned torpedo that is part of Panerai’s history as supplier of watches to the Royal Italian Navy.


Tool kit

Another engaging feature of Panerai watches is that they are supplied with some useful extras, in this case a spare strap, a screwdriver, and the tool that you need for changing the strap.

PAM00614, price and availability

Price £11,600, available from summer/autumn 2015

PAM00615, bezel in black ceramic

The PAM00615 differs from the PAM00614 in that it has a black ceramic bezel with stud hour markings. In addition, it has an hour counter at 3 o’clock, and no date window. Price £12,700, available from summer/autumn 2015




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