Audaz Gallant ADZ-2005-05 Review
Here's the review you've (hopefully) been looking forward to. I have worn the Audaz Gallant for the past week, taking it off, well, practically never. It's an odd feeling to be entirely honest. It is a somewhat large watch (though not oversized). Combined with the rotating bezel, it feels somewhat like a diver's watch, but the strap adds a casual, comfortable, and non-diver like addition.
Case and Crown
The case, as I discussed above, is a somewhat large, but not overly so, ionic-coated beauty. Ionic coating is, in terms of function, nearly identical to PVD coating. Its shape conforms to my wrist (which if I can say, is pretty standard in terms of wrists) perfectly and while wearing it I noticed the numerous surfaces and facets, small details which I appreciate. The case has, as Audaz calls it, an "Antique Finish". They do not offer any further details, but I must say that the finish looks pretty damn good.
The exhibition caseback is deeply engraved with relevant information about the watch. The window on the caseback is tinted blue and features the Audaz logo on the inner side. At this point, I was wondering what type of crystal they used on the front of the watch. Although they do not provide the information, I am able to confidently tell you that it is, in fact, sapphire. The caseback, although pretty much irrelevant because it doesn't ever make contact with anything that could scratch it (even when placed dial-up, the lugs are touching the surface, not the caseback), is mineral. I used the tests in this video to determine which crystal was used.
The push/pull crown is extremely easy to grip and turn. The large teeth make winding and setting the time easy. Similarly, pulling the crown out was also done with ease. To be completely honest I couldn't think of anything to improve at this point in regard to the crown.
I couldn't think of anything to improve in regards to the crown, or the case. I was going to dock a point because I thought they didn't use sapphire crystal, but they did. I can't add much, actually, because the case is so well-done. I don't really like dealing in hypotheticals, but I would like to see a screw-down crown and enhanced water resistance in the future. That would be nice, especially if the watch was on a bracelet.
Dial and Hands
Simple, but effective, the dial and hands do their job well. The watch has C1 (? -- this is not info I was provided with, I am making an assumption based on past experience) superluminova. Whatever it is, it glows green and looks pretty white in the daylight.
The Audaz logo is present at the 12 o'clock position, along with the company name printed underneath it. The word "AUTOMATIC" is found just above the 6 o'clock position. The dial actually has a wave texture on it. I attempted to take pictures that show this feature effectively, but it is somewhat hard. You can discern it by looking closely at all the photos in this section. The first photo is probably the easiest to discern. It is much easier to see in-person.
Unfortunately, the dial also has a few negative aspects. I personally don't like the window that displays the balance wheel. This isn't for any reason other than the fact that it almost cheapens the watch in my opinion. Of course, the collector or serious wearer probably isn't their target market, so this feature will mostly likely be one of the larger selling points. Also, a side note on my particular watch, and as I highlighted in the close-up above, the market at 6 o'clock is slightly tilted and off-center. Not a big deal as it took me a few days to notice, but I thought I would mention it.
The lume applied does its job. It is quite bright, but fades quickly. That being said, it is still visible for several hours after being exposed to light. The thing I noticed, however, was that the lume was applied unevenly. The dots are brighter than the hands and markers at 3, 6, and 9. There are also some small spots in the 6 o'clock marker that glow brighter than the surroundings. I don't know if I just got a lemon, but it wouldn't be fair to not mention.
I'm not taking off any points for the balance wheel window, I can't really have my own personal opinions affect the review, but there were some issues with my particular watch that most likely slipped past QC such as the off-center marker at 6 o'clock and uneven lume. As a result of these, I had to deduct two points from the score.
Strap and buckle
Where do I start with this section. Wow. Above and beyond what I expected and easily the nicest strap on any watch I have ever owned, it fits the rugged design so well. First off, the leather is thick. As a result, it was uncomfortable until it broke in (as any leather strap would be). Despite the thickness, the leather is supple (after being broken in). Plus, it's soft and comfortable as a result.
The beautiful strap is paired with a pin buckle, which almost pains me to see. The strap is so well-done, it is unfortunate that it could not be paired with something nicer. It does its job, but a nicer buckle would have most definitely been noticed. The Audaz name is also found on the buckle, which shows at least a little extra effort.
The strap is so, so nice, but the buckle could have been executed better. That being said, it keeps the strap securely again in place, so I can't complain about function.
The packaging keeps the watch well-protected and I like the hard travel-style case I am beginning to see more and more.
On the Wrist
Definitely a watch you could wear in more than one situation, it is comfortable and doesn't ride too far to either side.
Final Score: 27/30
When contacted by a company I had never heard of, I didn't know what to expect. That being said, I was excited to find out more. When the watch arrived, my enthusiasm grew, because it truly is a nice watch that will enter my rotation along with an Omega, Corum, etc. In fact, most of the points were removed because of small mistakes that made their way through quality control, not because they could have done a better job. Final thoughts? I want another in a different color. You can view the entire collection on their website here.
Please note that all scores are given relative to the price of the watch.
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