About Vintage hail out of Copenhagen, Denmark. As far as minimalist watches go; the Scandinavians seem to do it best – keeping things clean and simple, yet elegant and stylish.
Their first collection is named after their two founders – hence why “By Skov Andersen” can be found on the dial. They’ve also named the first 4 after significant horological dates – this model being 1844. Whilst I couldn’t find out why this year was significant on their website, I assume it relates to when Antoine LeCoutre invented the world’s most precise measuring instrument at the time, the Millionomètre.
Anyway, let’s take a closer look to see if this a good timepiece at £280.
- Dimensions: 41mm diameter x 11mm height x 47mm lug to lug
- Weight: 66g
- Water resistance rating: 5ATM / 50m
- Movement: Miyota 6S11
- Lug width: 20mm
- Warranty: 2 year
- Price: £280
- Buy here: http://about-vintage.com/shop/1844-chronograph-black-strap/
The case is a reasonably simple barrel shape with dumpy lugs. It’s fully polished; and therefore makes a statement.
There’s a subtle channel around the bottom bezel edge to split up the side profile.
The pump-style pushers are bold and impressive: they look good, provide a decent click and feel solid when using them.
The crown has the About Vintage squiggle logo embossed in the end, which is accurate and intricate. The grip is ok, but you shouldn’t need to adjust the watch too often so it’s not really going to be an issue.
Sitting on top of the case is a single domed sapphire crystal. As it’s only domed on top you do get distortion at tight angles. The anti-reflective coating is proving to be effective to the naked eye, although due to the dome it’s quite hard to photograph.
The caseback has an elegant design to it; with a cityscape of Copenhagen and a serial number in the centre. various specifics surround the outer edge.
The dial is pearl white; which is quite silvery in appearance. It has a lovely and classy matte sheen to it.
The majority of the dial detail is printwork, bar 4 applied steel dot hour markers located at 12, 3, 6 and 9. The dial has an unusual but pleasant configuration of an inner minute track and the hour numerals printed around the outside edge – both have been swapped to the norm.
The polished steel hands are an elegant shape, with a bulge 3 quarters up. They’re flat and provide a nice reflection when the light hits them.
The subdials are easy to read thanks to the detailed minute tracks. A nice touch is the usage of the About Vintage squiggle logo at the 60 minute position on the chronograph minutes subdial at 12.
The date window is cut out of the dial base, with a gentle bevelled edge to it. The colour of the date wheel itself doesn’t quite match up in colour, and I think the text is a bit too large too: it’s just not quite as refined as the rest of the dial.
The dial also has Copenhagen printed at the foot of the dial, in the style of “Swiss Made”.
The black leather is classy, yet striking when offset against the silvery dial. The quality is vey good; it has a soft top and is very supple.
The strap comes loaded with a standard tang buckle, with the About Vintage logo deeply and delicately engraved on the top bar.
The strap also comes with quick release pins, which are always a great addition.
The movement used in the 1844 is the Miyota 6S11. This isn’t a movement often used; I suppose it’s due to the dual subdial config rather than the more popular trio.
The configuration is as follows: the small running seconds is located at 6, the big seconds hand is the chronograph seconds and the top subdial at 12 is the 60 minute chronograph. The date window is at 9, and the movement boasts a 4 year battery life.
It is true that there are cheaper alternatives out there if you’re after a quartz minimalist chronograph. However, the entire package of the About Vintage 1844 Chronograph is appealing.
It’s well built, comes packaged in a lovely presentation case, and the design is classy and elegant – which is hard to do in a minimalist form.
Really, the only negative I can think of is the date wheel, and how the colour and font doesn’t quite line up to the rest of the design.
I’ve really enjoyed my time with the About Vintage 1844 Chronograph, and I do believe they’ve done a cracking job.
8 September, 2017 at 8:09 pm
Love your reviews Joshua and have purchased several watches based on your recommendations. Although I really love this design it’s out of my price range. Do you know of any similar looking watches that are less than $250US?
5 January, 2019 at 11:16 pm
Thank you for the comprehensive review! I’ve been eyeing this piece, but looking for cheaper alternatives, any recommendations? Thanks!
19 March, 2019 at 12:35 am
Spot on review! I recently bought one of these, black face with the black leather band. I agree about the date box, the font is just slightly too large for the window. Beyond that it is a beautiful watch and everybody comments on it, couldn’t be happier with this one .
9 November, 2020 at 6:53 pm
Lovely looking watch…..but stops and starts at will…….not sure why, shame really.