Blackout: TAG Heuer Aquaracer Full Black

Posted by: David Chalmers   |   14 November 2010   |   18 Comments  

 

The arrival of  the new Aquaracer 500m Full Black at Topper Jewelers is the opportunity for the second “Topper’s Corner” on Calibre 11. I love the all-black look of the Full Black and it reminds me of the Sinn U1 Black that I loved and owned for a while. TAG Heuer have really revived the black-on-black look over the last couple of years, with black case versions of the Monaco, Grand Carrera, Formula One and now Aquaracer joining the range.

I had a quick look at one of these in the TAG Heuer store in Melbourne last week, but didn’t get a chance to compare it to the stainless steel model to check the differences. So, over to Rob from Topper Jewelers for that comparison and his review of the new Aquaracer.

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The 500M is the most avant-garde model in the Aquaracer series, and the new Full Black 500m (Ref. WAJ2180) introduces many new design elements that build on last year’s popular WAJ2110 all steel watch to be the most modern looking of the range. Now that we have the Full Black Aquaracer in the store, we wanted to show you some detailed photos of TAG Heuer’s latest offering in the Aquaracer family, including some comparison shots with its all-steel brother.

Design and case

Last year’s 500m Aquaracer brought in several modern features, such as a “cyclops” over the date window at  9’oclock, a vertical dial treatment and an innovative hard rubber bezel with applied numerals.  These were paired with  functional dive attributes, such as an automatic helium escape valve, easily adjustable heavy rubber strap and a larger, easy-grip crown.   The result was a unique juxtaposition of style and function that looked dramatically different from all the Aquaracers and the 2000 Classic and 2000 Exclusive watches that had predated it.   The new Full Black retains the same basic design DNA of the Aquaracer 500m Steel and then adds its own design flourishes to give it a more modern, stealth look.

As is suggested by the name, the dial, bezel, case, crown, strap screws, rubber strap, and movement are all a subtle matted black.  Indeed only the bezel highlights, titanium deployment buckle, and helium escape valve aren’t black, and the watch’s main source of contrast from its all-black look is  the bright yellow and green superluminova on the hands, 12 o’clock bezel pip, and markers.

As to the composition of the case, we can assure the Calibre11 community that the case is made from light-weight titanium and not merely titanium-coated steel. Our store scale weighs the Full black including the rubber strap and buckle at 98.2 grams.  The similarly configured WAJ2110 steel watch weighs 130.3 grams.

The result of this titanium case and buckle is a large bold watch, yet with a weight very similar to the smaller  38mm Aquaracer.   TAG’s deployment buckle is also designed with the user’s comfort in mind.  Most deployment buckles on high end watches still utilize pre-set holes.  On this style of strap, the user must decide which hole he wants to slot the buckle.  The TAG deployment buckle utilizes pressure to close it, which means that as a wearer’s wrist size changes due to weather or other reasons, the wearer can make as finite an adjustment as desired  so they are never between holes.

The pressure system of the TAG deployment clasp allows for the smallest of micro- adjustments.


Picture of the double button titanium clasp in locked position.

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