The 2011 Rado D-Star Ceramic (ref. R15609162) follows in steps of its more advanced sister: the limited-edition D-Star Basel Special 2011 model that was presented last March during the annual Baselworld 2011 exhibition. If you followed the above link, you may have noticed that both models are presented in the same oval-shaped (or, rather, elongated cushion-shaped) black ceramic case and basically feature the same styling with similarly shaped hands and applied hour markers.
As usual for Rado, they stick to the “love it or hate it, we don’t care” design language, which seems to be heavily influenced by the Japanese watchmakers (or, maybe, the guys from Japan are influenced by Rado, I am not sure.)
However, the three-hander’s design is a little bit more elaborate when compared to the Basel Special 2011.
As you can see in the photo above, its black dial features a stamped wave motif that provides the face with more depth and serves as a perfect background for the luminous hour and minute hands, as well as for the shiny seconds hand that features a drop of luminous substance on its triangle-shaped tip.
Looking at the timekeeper, I can’t get rid of a feeling that there is something wrong with proportions of the hands, the applied hour markers (they are, too, luminous, for that matter) and the wave-stamped area.
To my taste, the hour markers are a little too short and too thick making the watch look cruder than it actually is.
From where I sit, they look like stumps when compared to the longer and thinner indexes used in the Basel Special 2011 model.
To allow the hour markers more breathing space, the minute track was removed from the dial to the bezel flange.
Like one might have expected, there is nothing sensational in the technical department here.
According to the Swiss watchmaker, the timekeeper will be powered by the well-known ETA 2824-2 self-winding movement. Judging by the photos, the ebauche is offered with a gilded finish and has its standard oscillating weight replaced with a customized T-shaped job.
The movement is perfectly visible through a sapphire crystal on the case back, although the look of it is slightly disappointing for those dreaming about a meticulously crafted, hand-decorated movement.
By the way, while the body of the new D-Star is made from ceramic, the case back is crafted from carbon-diffused stainless steel, which is less prone to scratches compared to other “all-black” watches that sport normal stainless steel covered with black PVD.
See also: Rado Ceramica DiaStar Digital Automatic
Rado D-Star (ref. R15609162) specification
Price: €1950 (Retail)
Movement: Automatic, ETA caliber 2824-2, 25 jewels, 28,800 vph, Swiss Made
Movement decoration: Gilded, modified T-shaped oscillating weight
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Power reserve: 38 hours
Case: Black ceramic, polished
Bezel shape: Round
Dimensions: 42.00 mm x 46.00 mm
Case height: 11.00 mm
Dial: Black, wave pattern
Hour markers: Luminous, applied
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Black polished ceramic bracelet with a titanium three-fold buckle
Crystal: Sapphire, curved
Back: Carbon-diffused stainless steel with sapphire crystal