Unveiled last march right before the Baselworld 2008 world fair, the Xemex XE 5000 Ivory chronograph looks both trendy and refined in a modern, Web 2.0 way. I guess, guys from the legendary Porsche Design studio would be proud to make one, too.
I, frankly, was a bit disappointed that its large case measuring 44 millimeters in diameter is made of brushed stainless steel instead of titanium: the timekeeper needs to be a great deal lighter in order to match its appearance of understated elegance. I don’t understand why they decided to cut costs with a product that costs like five iPhones.
While there is usually a tendency among independent brands to make their cases as easy to manufacture as possible (the less operations your CNC needs to perform on a part, the less it usually costs to make), this Xemex XE 5000 makes its statement with a deliberately complex body that features four separate lugs, a rather thick bezel (probably to make the dial more proportional to the rest of the piece), and a very unusual winding/setting crown.
As the crown is clearly a bit more difficult to operate than that on a normal watch, it is also a lot more comfortable (especially to those who tends to wear their timepieces lower on their wrists) and a lot more pleasant to look at.
Inside the oversized body is hidden an almost legendary ETA Valjoux 7750 automatic movement.
Known for its robustness, accuracy and overall dependability, it is the same caliber that, with some minor modifications, powers the gracious Xemex Piccadilly Chronograph Reserve ALL BLACK chronograph, as well as a great number of other, much more expensive timekeepers produced over the years by major Swiss brands.
Just like almost all watches of this class, the Xemex XE 5000 Ivory features a convex sapphire crystal covering its face and another sapphire crystal implanted into its screw-down display back.
Its setting crown, which is also made screw-down in order to increase the timekeeper’s water resistance rating, withstands pressures of up to 5 ATM, which converts into more common 50 meter of water-resistance.
Well, I trust the solution was employed not only for practical purposes, but for aesthetics’ sake, too, making the watch look even more original.
As you can see on the photos, the chronograph’s off-white face features a standard tri-compax dial layout with two chronograph counters (12-hour sub-dial at 6 o’clock and a 30-minute totalizer at 12 o’clock) as well as a small seconds indicator at 9 o’clock.
To make the whole display look more contrast, its dials are made of contrasting polished metal.
There is also Xemex trademark round date window is located at 3 o’clock. Rather small, it still provides good enough view at the simple calendar that only displays current date.
The tachymeter scale’s red Arabic numerals and indices are printed on the sapphire crystal giving the face of the watch with an additional dimension.
The Xemex XE 5000 Ivory is delivered on a nicely executed white rubber strap with a very convenient-looking folding clasp, which is made of stainless steel.
All things considered, this one is a strange watch. On one hand, it looks like a nice unisex fashion accessory with a little feminine bias to it. On the other hand, the size of it makes it suitable only for the male customers who are slightly overweight or have athletic, muscular body and hands. For them, however, the watch may look not masculine enough.
Well, it is for you to decide, as always.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 4/5
Nighttime Legibility: 4/5
Value for Money: 3/5
Overall Rating: 4/5
Xemex XE 5000 Ivory chronograph specification
Price range: $4000 (MSRP)
Movement: Caliber ETA Valjoux 7750, Swiss Made
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Case material: Brushed stainless steel, with mobile horns
Diameter: 44.00 mm
Dial: White with rhodiumed chronograph counters
Water resistance: 50 meters
Strap: White rubber band with steel folding clasp
Crystal: Convex sapphire crystal