Having just introduced the cushion-shaped H08 sports watch last year, Hermès is now giving it a new look with a case in rose gold, ceramic, and DLC-treated titanium. While the design is identical to the earlier versions, the new H08 gains a bold and luxurious look – along with a steeper price tag – with the new mix of case materials.
The mix of materials on the new H08 are a perfect complement to the clean design and simple lines of the watch. Though certainly a bit more flashy than the muted originals, the new H08 is still an understated watch. I appreciate the use of ceramic and DLC-coated titanium as it creates contrast while dialling down the bling factor. The result is a watch that manages to look different from other sports watches, even though the black-and-rose-gold formula is a familiar one.
But as with the original, I wish Hermes would remove the date between four and five o’clock. Given its functional design and focus on geometric shapes, I feel the H08 should be about an unconditional focus on the time.
Priced at US$17,000, the new H08 costs almost double the model in titanium. That’s about the going rate for upgrading from titanium to a precious metal case, but it is still a chunk of change. While the original was fair value given its cost-to-performance ratio, this one is a little tougher to justify, though it is arguably far more attractive.
The new H08 is actually comprised of three different materials: the bezel and crown are brushed black ceramic, the case middle is 18k rose gold, and the case back is DLC-coated titanium. The rose gold case middle should make this a substantially heftier watch than its titanium counterpart.
Materials aside, the new H08 sticks to the same design, resulting in identical dimensions of 39 by 39 mm. It retains the same brushed finish on most surfaces, but highlighted by polished bevels on the edges.
And the dial continues the two-tone appearance of the case with a matte, grained finish that contrasts with the rose gold-plated hands and Arabic numerals.
The movement is still the H1837, the workhorse calibre found in most of Hermes’ watches for men. As with many of Hermes’ mechanical movements, the H1837 is made by the respected movement maker, Vaucher, a company in which Hermes holds a quarter stake.
But due to the thinness of the movement, it has a short power reserve of 45 hours, less the current industry norm of at least 70 hours or more for newer calibres.
Key facts and price
Diameter: 39 mm x 39 mm
Height: 10.96 mm
Material: Rose gold, ceramic, and DLC-treated titanium
Water resistance: 100 m
Features: Hours, minutes, seconds, and date
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 45 hours
Strap: Rubber or fabric
Limited edition: No
Availability: At Hermès boutiques
Price: US$17,000 before taxes; or 23,000 Singapore dollars including GST
For more, visit Hermes.com.
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