My Rolex 114060 Submariner review

As promissed... here is my review of the new Rolex 114060 Submariner... read my first experience and how i feel about this new Rolex model. How it compares to older models.
More to follow the next weeks as i will put it to the summer-test.
Click the images and i hope you enjoy..

Dear watch lover. We are proud to inform you.. that this review has been visited by more then 90.000 people over the period it has been published.. i hope we where able to inform you as also infect you with the Rolex virus. Its an great watch.

In the meanwhile we started a new venture > Bulang & Sons. And next to watches and great products like handmade straps, accessories, bags, lifestyle, vintage goods and fashion, we will create an online collecting lifestyle magazine on that website. We hope to welcome you there also in the future for more reviews and watch/lifestyle fun.

Thank you, Bernhard Bulang

The review:

Ok... before i start my review i want to share with you my Rolex history and passion so you can relate to my comment. I am a vintage guy. Since about 6 years i collect vintage watches now.. mainly Rolex. My first Rolex was a vintage Datejust (my wife's now) and a 6531 non-crownguard-Sub. James Bond style. Not only because vintage watches have so much style, individual looks and character. New Rolex watches and including all sapphire watches always felt a bit dead on my wrist. As the sapphire makes the watch flat. Nothing beats a super dome #19 on a 5512/13 Submariner.

Not that i did not try in the past. Vintage wise i tried almost every reference sports Rolex. And also on sapphire i have owned several 16660, 16600, 14060, 16800, 16610, new Gmt. Every time after about 1-2 weeks they lost their magic to me.

Well then why buy a 114060 now... one would ask. Well i don't know.. maybe it's the hope this one will stick. As i want 1 watch i can keep wearing during holiday, beach, etc. And keep enjoying. If it will last.... i hope so. But maybe this love will be over... in a couple of weeks. Hope not. If so, it's not the watch but my stupid 'vintage' mind ;-)

So what makes this 114060 different from all the other new-style Rolex watches ???... more below.... but here we go:
Pure looks... when i looked at the press-image during the Basel fair last spring.

But it started earlier...
When Rolex presented the new 116610... in green.

I did not like the Hulk on the images first.. i even was negative about it. But when i had a look at it live about one year ago in Geneva... it itched me. Really a nice watch. Great on the wrist. But i don't like the bubble on the sapphire. I never did. Also not on the vintage watches. I even replaced the plexi on my 1680.. with a super domed #19 to get rid of the bubble.

Then this spring at Basel fair press release ... this images hit me....

And instantly i was hit... by ohhhh this could be a winner. Why??? I will tell you later on..
Now my favorite AD provided me with one... and when i opened the box i felt greedy.

First some more images.... i love that symmetry and the 4 lines. It makes it look like a 5512.
And for the first time in the new series it feels like a tool watch again!
I don't like the gloss finishes on some of the sports. Look at a vintage JC Killy... stylish chrono... but totally sporty! That is what Rolex should be about for me ;-)
And what lines.. the Maxi dots... well for me it almost looks like a modern version of a 5513 Maxi Mk1!
And some nice details. I like the crown-guard so far... and without the bubble on top the design falls into it's place. 

The details in the bezel are nice. Imagine Comex on the dial and you have the Killer watch!

1680 with tropic #19 super domed next to the 114060

These are the 2 nicest NEW watches from the Rolex Company the last years for me!
Real great watches.... see my Tudor Heritage review for more images of that one..

Such great design achievement over the years. Like Porsche 911... Still same family and DNA.. but already about 60 years of Rolex Submariner with crownguards...

And here is the main reason why i like this watch. I told you above.. i am a vintage guy.
And over the last years, when buying late 5513's and the sapphire watches there was always one thing which itched me about them. The bracelet.
Here you see the ref. 5510 (1959) next to the 114060. Do you see it, on both watches the case stands out against the bracelet?
When you look at the old Submariners from the 50th and 60th.... you see a different proportion. Not in the case so much... but in the bracelet. Nothing beats the look of a vintage Sub with a super dome plexi and a revited or folded bracelet. As the bracelet is also 20 mm wide... but much thinner then modern ones. And by that the case is much more visible and dominant when wearing on your wrist. The design popps in your eye's.

See the evolution.... in bracelet.. and see how the case stands out on the left against to the right.

The case and dial shines... right in your face. On late 5513's and later Subs the solid bracelets became much thicker. More volume and weight. Maybe better as 'tool watch' but design wise it changed the proportion for me. And with the flat sapphire on top.. the case and bracelet melted into one big piece of metal. I never really liked that look.

I have owned a couple of 14060's... i loved to wear them on a nato... but never really enjoyed it on the bracelet. It became flat. Case to thin in the total looks.
See the looks on the wrist... Compare the left image and the right...

See the difference with the 14060 and 114060 and see what i mean with difference in case/bracelet relationship.

Both inlay's...
For me the 114060 combines the look of the old vintage subs with modern times.
Of course we all love the old cases... and have mixed feelings with the bigger cases. Different shape of crown guards.. etc. But i have the feeling with this watch Rolex returned to it's roots. Way more then any 'heritage'-style watch like the Explorer etc... this is a natural evolution.... with some nice details i like in the watches.

Big fat indexes... such a great face ... and the case is not visual melted to the bracelet... but stands out.

There will be people out there feeling the new case isn't classy enough... don't like the bracelet/case relation.. and will cherish the old 14060. I can relate to that... and loved the classic looks of it when i owned it... but also i always felt like wearing them on nato instead of the bracelet.. as it looks much cooler then and the case is back to 'right in your face'...

And they are cool watches.... also in the SPA ;-)

As i also liked the GMT on nato better then on bracelet. But the black thing was boring very, very fast.... and even made it look real cheap... short love. The case lines are close to the new 114060... but the face is much more cleaned up.
So who knows how long my love with the 114060 will last.... but for sure i will enjoy it this summer. Diving on Mallorca...
And i will keep doing a review on it... how it felt under water... i will put a nato on it and report the looks also.

I wish you all a great summer!!!

Rolex thank you for this one.... Back to toolwatch!
Reduced to the max.


Check out for the lastest reviews of the Tudor ranger and Blue Bay...

5 reacties:

  1. Fantastic review, Bernhard. Personally, I'm not fully convinced by your aesthetic conclusions, but the analysis is very interesting, the fotos are spectacular and provide a first really decent look at this watch, including great comparison shots with those other great watches you seem to have. Have a great summer with your new watch and may you find lasting pleasure, satisfaction and that warm glow inside that we all aspire to when we select this kind of watch!

  2. Skorpio RF-forum NLJuly 16, 2012 at 10:59 PM

    Nice review Bernhard, received mine yesterday (Dutch delivery also), feels good on the wrist and I love the clean looks.

  3. Fantastic write-up, review, and the photos are spectacular!!

  4. Real nice review here.. great watch too



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