The new Hamilton Khaki Aviation X-Patrol (refs. H76556331, H76556131, and H76566751) automatic wrist watch looks like an evolution of the stealthy Hamilton Khaki X-Mach Pilot watch that was presented almost exactly three years ago in February, 2009. The difference between the two? Well, preserving all the controls and being powered by virtually the same movement, the new version now lets you convert nautical miles into statute miles and back. And the watch has also become smaller.
According to official specs, the upcoming Hamilton Khaki Aviation X-Patrol is going to be delivered in a mid-sized (at least, for the chosen style) stainless steel case that has shrunk from impressive (and certainly inspired by Breitling) 44 mm to more wearable 42 millimeters.
The signature chronograph push-pieces has also become not as prominent thus making the watch look more elegant.
The secondary setting crown, which is located at 9 o’clock, is still used to control the slide rule painted on the bezel flange under the glare-proofed sapphire crystal.
Like most pilot’s watches that sport similar styling, the new Hamilton X-Patrol is not particularly easy to read. However, the dial is legible enough to at read current time, date and the day of week.
The chronograph counters, on the other hand, are not as easily readable (especially the 12-hour totalizer that has no numerals at all.) Well, I have a feeling that the function is here to serve purely decorative purpose.
As the previous model, the watch is powered by the well-known ETA Valjoux 7750 automatic movement that was personalized to the watchmaker’s standards, branded and renamed as Hamilton caliber H21. It, however, still sports the same 30 jewels in all the right places and has a power reserve, which is increased to some 60 hours.
Although the watch is relatively expensive (see below,) the choice of caliber significantly increases its “value for money” ratio: with so many similarly priced competitors rarely offering anything more impressive than a simple “three-hander” with a third-party chronograph add-on module, I think I would give the X-Patrol at least four and a half stars out of five in this department (the other half didn’t make it into the rating because I have an impression that the watch will be more difficult to get rid of just because it’s not as well-advertised as some other classic “pilots”.)
The new X-Patrol will be officially presented next month during the Baselworld 2012 show. It will reportedly go on sale soon afterwards at a recommended retail price of $1295.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 4.5/5
Nighttime Legibility: 4.5/5
Value for Money: 4.5/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
See also: Luminox F-35 Lightning II Chronograph
Hamilton Khaki Aviation X-Patrol automatic watch (refs. H76556331, H76556131, and H76566751) specification
Price: $1295 (MSRP)
Movement: Automatic, Hamilton caliber H21, based on ETA Valjoux 7750, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 30
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Movement decoration: No data
Functions: Hours, minutes, date, day of week, chronograph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Case material: Stainless steel
Bezel material: Matches case
Crown material: Matches case
Case shape: Round
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 42.00 mm
Case height: No data
Lug width: 20.00 mm (recommended strap ref. H600.646.105)
Dial: Black or Silvered
Hour markers: Luminous
Water resistance: 100 meters
Strap: Stainless steel bracelet or black leather strap with contrast stitching
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective
Case back: Transparent