At the recent SIHH 2010 trade show the Swiss brand has presented a refreshed version of its Montblanc Star 4810 Automatic Chronograph watch.
The device is now available in tow variations that seem to differ only with the way their hands, hour markers, and large Roman numerals are finished. The first one has the aforementioned elements treated with something that looks like rhodium-plating and the other, dressier one offers a so-called “two-tone” design with the same elements plated with 18-carat rose gold.
Trying to make their current Star collection look more consistent, they took the basic layout of the three-hander and added a pair of chronograph sub-dials at 6 and 12 o’clock (the former shares its space with a wide, arc-shaped date disk) and a small seconds indicator at 9 hours.
The result looks a bit controversial to me since all elements of this timekeeper seem to be a tad exaggerated: the numerals are a tad too large, the guilloche pattern is carved a tad too dip into the silver-toned dial, and the sub-dials are raised a tad too high over its surface. On the other hand, the Dauphine-shaped hour and minute hands are a bit too small for this oversized watch.
Also, just to make things clear, I think that the bright red, gold-rimmed triangle at the lower part of the dial that points to current date seems somewhat superfluous to me: it just adds one detail too many to this already busy dial.
Just to make things more clear, I can’t really say that I don’t like this watch, neither I intend to bash it. It is just that this timepiece doesn’t seem to be polished enough to get the highest score of this brief review. I think, exterior design-wise, it earns four stars out of five.
Another thing that stopped this Star 4810 model from getting more stars is the way its impressive size contradicts to its exterior styling if you don’t mind me saying this.
Measuring 44 millimeters in diameter and around 14.5 millimeters thick, this timekeeper is sized like a sporty chronograph, but is clearly designed to be worn with something more formal than slacks and a polo shirt. I understand that is some parts of the world a luxury watch is supposed to look big and bold, but, well, in time they will, too, develop a good taste in these sorts of things and reselling this beast without losing too much money may prove a bit problematic.
Predictably, on a normal wrist the device takes a lot of space, but not ridiculously so, which is definitely a plus.
The watch is powered by the Montblanc 4810/501 Caliber, which is based on the well-known ETA Valjoux 7750 natural born automatic chronograph movement. Featuring power reserve of some 48 hours, this COSC-certified chronometer movement is accurate, reliable and you won’t have problems fixing it when it is broken, because just about any serviceman out there knows how to disassemble it with his eyes closed.
Although the Star 4810 is equipped with a display case back cover that features a synthetic sapphire crystal, the clearly visible movement features only very basic finish: despite polished and (probably) rhodium-plated bridges, blued screws, and a branded oscillating weight with vertical Geneva Stripes pattern, there is nothing more to look it. Well, for a price of just above €5000, this is something to be expected.
Photos: Montblanc / uhrforum.de
Montblanc Star 4810 Automatic Chronograph watch specification
Price range: Approx. €5000
Movement: Montblanc 4810/501 Caliber, automatic, 28,800 vph, 25 jewels, COSC-certified chronometer, Swiss Made
Complications: Date, chronograph
Power reserve: 48 hours
Case material: Stainless steel
Bezel material: Stainless steel
Case shape: Round
Transparent case back: Yes, Sapphire
Case size: 44.0 mm
Case height: 14.50 mm
Hands: Rose gold / Rhodiumed
Strap: Black leather
Crystal: Sapphire, AR-coated
Water resistance: 30 meters