Bulgari has always been known to be a jewelry brand and over the years we have seen its experience and expertise of that branch out to watchmaking. The Carbon Gold series which has been around since 1993, is a good example of how Bulgari’s jewelry expertise enables it to innovate constantly in the watchmaking field in terms of design and materials. The Carbon Gold features a high-tech carbon-resin proprietary composite allied with gold, that most precious of metals, combine to give us a very current and trendy twist to the watch.
The 1993 launch of the Carbon Gold series was an important milestone for Bulgari as it marks the start for all manner of research on alloys and metals and unexpected combinations. This year’s release of the Carbon Gold plays out a little different from past years as Bulgari offers a wide selection of colour combinations to choose from: a black version in keeping with contemporary Italian design; a brown interpretation radiating a discreetly luminous warmth; and a third glowing in a firmly on-trend shade of blue.
In all three colour options, the beautifully-crafted pink gold hour-markers are a subtle reminder of the jewellery expertise of Bulgari, and each is tipped by a Superluminova dot to ensure greater legibility of the dial in any lighting condition.
Case, Dial and Hands
The Carbon Gold comes in a handy 40 mm diameter steel case that fits well for most occasions. The case is coated with carbon resin which makes it durable for most conditions out there. The timepiece features an engraved 18kt pink gold plate and crown which complements very well with the pink gold-plated hour markers.
On first look, the watch may seem to be pretty ordinary in design given its carbon resin coating. We think what really differentiates it from other casual-looking watches would be its pink gold markers and woven leather strap, giving it a uniquely Bulgari look.
The Carbon Gold would be an ideal watch for casual wear and less so for a dress watch given its coating and finishing. Its 30-metre guaranteed water resistance allows you to take it out to the weather without fear of damage. What we like about this year’s release is the wide variety of colours available for choice, from black to brown followed by blue. This allows buyers to decide on a choice that best match their preferences or personality.
Also notable would be the pin buckle of the watch, it is made of PEEK, an ultra-sturdy and light alloy that is frequently used in the field of aeronautics.
In the Carbon Gold series, we see the Calibre B77 powering the timepiece at a frequency of 28,800 vph and it features a 42 hour power reserve which is ideal for an active lifestyle. The Calibre B77 measures at a slim 3.60 mm-thick thus allowing it to fit smoothly into the 40 mm case. We think the movement is pretty reasonable given that it’s a mechanical self-winding movement with a date function and we would have to say the finishing is pretty average and you definitely cannot compare it with other high-end movements.
Considering the Carbon Gold is retailing at SGD$ 4,070 w GST, the timepiece is a pretty good buy considering the brand and the fact that you get a mechanical self-winding movement in the form of the Calibre B77. Of course, if you start comparing this watch to other high-end brands, it would not hold its ground in terms of the quality of finishing and case or dial design. What we felt needs more improvement would be in the area of leather strap and stitch work; we find the woven leather strap to be a little too flimsy and loose. Nonetheless, the watch is definitely worth a look and if one is not too picky on the details of it, this is certainly a good buy in terms of the value you get.