In the world of watches, colors make a difference. Even a little touch of color can change the whole look of a watch, and in the case of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Chronograph Ceramic, elevate it to a different level. How does Jaeger-LeCoultre do this? By simply adding a touch of rose gold!
Inside is the Jaeger LeCoultre caliber 751 — especially, the 751A/1. This is an automated movement; it defeats at 28,800 vph, and it’s a power reserve of 65 hours; it is 5.72 mm thick. It is a pillar wheel controlled, vertical clutch design and it’s also very pleasant to use — it has none of the somewhat notchy feel of, say, an entrance level Valjoux 7750 movement, though it’s not quite as buttery smooth as some thing like a Datograph. Chronograph pusher feel preferences are extremely personal though, and some prefer a bit sharper let-off in the detent (to say nothing of the truth that if it comes to pusher feel, there’s a very sharp curve of increasing price for relatively small returns).Now this motion was the main reason behind the controversy around its release back in 2005. There are aspects of it that give it a strong resemblance to a different, much older, and also pretty famous chronograph movement, that’s that the F. Piguet 1185 (you can read about the 1185 right here, at the still-classic description of it and its extra flat brethren on Timezone.com). In particular, the only real reset hammer for the three chronograph registers struck some instantly as damning evidence that this wasn’t an in-house chronograph movement at all, but rather, something which had been brought in from Piguet. Along with also the concept that the 751 is really an F. Piguet 1185 stuck (now of course, F. Piguet is called Manufacture Blancpain).While I can’t state that the JLC 751A/1 wasn’t influenced by aspects of this Piguet 1185 I can say, entirely, that they are not the same movement; there are many differences in the design of the 2 moves, from the amount of barrels into the geometry of the reset lever.
This 18K rose gold offers a striking contrast with the matte black ceramic case of the watch. With a diameter of 46mm is it a substantial, yet very well proportioned Jaeger-LeCoultre. The clever design of the dial makes it that the chronograph counters are relatively close to the center of the watch, but you don’t mind that much as readability is excellent.
As well as the black and white tones JLC adds yellow as a trim color. You see it on the minute scale onto the flange ring, at the tip of this chronograph minutes hands, and on the ring. While this is a super diver watch, the strap is intended for much more terrestrial use. I recommend using something such as a rubber strap if you are going to be using this piece underwater.The strap onto the watch is really slick and grew on me quickly. Jaeger-LeCoultre designed it from a few substances and colours. The interior lining is yellow while the exterior is black. Most of the strap is calfskin leather. I like how the strap ends have give them, but can also be designed to bend with the shape of the case.Over that the dial is an AR coated domed sapphire crystal. Besides this 12 hour chronograph is a second time-zone function. I really don’t personally use the term GMT because that hand is a 12 hour versus 24 hour. There is a neat little feature that lets you know if it is AM or PM in the second time zone. This can be done with small day/night index window under the Jaeger-LeCoultre logo under 12 o’clock. Nice system right? Total the watch gets the time, two time zones, the date, and chronograph. A lot of healthy functionality here, and also to being a decent sports watch, it is a fantastic traveler’s watch.Inside the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph GMT Navy SEALs is a Jaeger-LeCoultre in-house designed and made caliber 757 automatic movement. The longer power reserve is a nice feature and I found it to be both accurate and easy to operate. Then again, it’s a Jaeger-LeCoultre movement.
Ask anybody interested in quality mechanical watches and they’ll tell you Jaeger-LeCoultre creates a fine timepiece. Throughout its rich history, the brand has triumphed in almost universally having watch lovers get excited about their movements and quality.Jaeger-LeCoultre has become the difficult task of setting a high bar for itself mechanically. The next step after that was to capture the hearts of as much of the watch enthusiast marketplace as you can. This was the harder part. JLC gained a great deal of fame with their more formal legendary pieces like the Reverso and classic Master Compressor. That wasn’t enough for them. Several years ago Jaeger-LeCoultre chose to double its efforts in the popular high-end sport watch marketplace as well.Then that the Jaeger-LeCoultre Navy SEALs watch was borne. The thought was that JLC would work closely with United States Navy SEAL soldiers to design and develop watches that would fulfill their expectations in training and combat. The hoped result would be super trendy watches with famous Jaeger-LeCoultre movements inside of them that every guy wanted to have. Especially since it had been “performance tested and made,” versus simply left in a design studio. Having a goal like that JLC again set the bar very high. The developed Master Compressor watches in the Navy SEALs collection certainly do get a lot of attention, and are worth looking at whether you would like to be such as the Navy SEALs or not.
Ceramic has become quite a popular material to craft watch cases (and in some cases even bracelets) from. Light, difficult to scratch and highly corrosive resistance makes it an almost obvious choice, especially when it also adds a dash of mysterious character to a watch, like the matte black does to this Jaeger-LeCoultre. Ironically, it is the rose gold that serves as a constant reminder of this.
There is a day/night indicator with a little date aperture between 4 and 5 o’clock. This dial could have been nice if the date was left out, but I understand some people prefer it, like it or not, the date is regarded as useful by many men and women. In any event, it is not too terribly cluttered and I can live with it given my personal tastes that prefer charm. The blue, partly opened hands are accompanied by a gray, subdued hand to indicate another timezone and therefore are treated for luminescence, as would be the pointed hour markers. Yet more, JLC uses the in-house Calibre 757 that forces along at 28,800vph, made of 300 pieces, and containing 45 jewels. No doubt about it, this movement has proven reliable, and it delivers an impressive 65-hour power book. It is wonderful to have an in-house motion offer this type of high power reserve due to the fact that sometimes you get stuck using a paltry 38 hours on event. It is simply a excellent instance of a new offering the people what they want.And exactly what the people today want are characteristics such as the second timezone and patented compression crucial for water resistance. They might have just as easily added a few subdials and stopped there, but leave it to JLC to take put their own touches on this classic layout. The integration of these little features would have destroyed a lot of different brands’ dials but, to no one’s surprise, JLC can pull off sporty with a wholesome balance of symmetry. The single facet of this dial which threatens that balance is the date window, but alas we can’t always have it all.
The back of this watch is perhaps just as impressive as the superb black dial. Although Jaeger-LeCoultre’s grade 923 movement would most likely be impressive to look at too, they chose to prove this watch has been tested for 1000 hours related to the accuracy of the movement. You are probably all familiar with the COSC (chronometer) certification for moves, but Jaeger-LeCoultre requires the extra step in tightening the range of deviation (-1/+6 seconds every day instead of -4/+6 seconds per day). What’s more, Jaeger-LeCoultre is analyzing the motion for accuracy, temperature fluctuations and shocks where the movement is already fitted in the opinion case. COSC is only testing the spare movement, which is later on fitted to the watch case by the watch maker again.Jaeger-LeCoultre develops and manufactures their own moves, as they have done for many many decades. They also supply some of their movements to other brands too. Jaeger-LeCoultre is a legitimate producer and enjoy what they do and have realized. Their movements vary from time-only perform to quite impressive complications, as known in the beginning of this article (f.e. Gyrotourbillon, Minute Repeater etc).After two weeks of wearing this watch on a daily basis, there are a few things I can resolve. First of all, how big is perfectly balanced for a sports watch. I also wear my 40mm Rolex Sea-Dweller some times, and that is beginning to seem a bit too little these days whereas my 39mm Royal Oaks fit me perfectly (they look & feel larger due to the big lugs and incorporated bracelet). So, for a round case, 41.5mm is definitely making me sense.
The back of this watch is perhaps equally as impressive as the wonderful black dial. Although Jaeger-LeCoultre’s grade 923 motion would probably be impressive to check at too, they opted to prove this watch has been tested for 1000 hours with respect to the accuracy of their motion. You’re likely all familiar with all the COSC (chronometer) certification for moves, but Jaeger-LeCoultre requires the extra step in tightening the range of deviation (-1/+6 seconds every day as opposed to -4/+6 minutes daily). What’s more, Jaeger-LeCoultre is analyzing the movement for precision, temperature changes and shocks in which the movement is already fitted at the opinion case. COSC is only testing the spare motion, which is later on fitted into the watch case from the watch manufacturer again.Jaeger-LeCoultre develops and manufactures their own movements, as they’ve done for many many decades. They also supply some of their movements to other brands as well. Jaeger-LeCoultre is a true producer and enjoy what they do and have realized. Their movements range from time-only function to quite impressive complications, as referred to at the start of this article (f.e. Gyrotourbillon, Minute Repeater etc).After two weeks of wearing this watch on a daily basis, there are a number of things I can resolve. First of all, how big is perfectly balanced for a sports watch. I also wear my 40mm Rolex Sea-Dweller a few times, and that’s beginning to look a bit too little nowadays whereas my 39mm Royal Oaks match me perfectly (they look & feel bigger as a result of large lugs and integrated bracelet). So, to get a round instance, 41.5mm is unquestionably making me sense.
Although its looks good, the Master Compressor Chronograph Ceramic a serious watch. Its water resistance is 100 meters, thanks to the specially designed crown. They also feature a safety indicator so that you can check if the crowns are fully screwed in, before entering the water.
I didn’t have a lot of expertise with this collection prior to the review, but after wearing this wonderful watch for some time I’m sold on the execution and really like this piece. I have spoke with JLC a good deal about their work with Navy SEALs and the feedback they get. The joke among collectors is always that no Navy SEALs man wearing a JLC can afford one. Which may be true, but Jaeger did not make them pay for the watches. Soldiers only get too many perks I inform you.About a couple of years ago there was a bigger 42mm broad version of the Master Compression Navy SEALs released I discussed here. The reason for this smaller version was because it had been need by the SEALs themselves. That is amusing because nearly all of the pieces are larger, with the chronograph I analyzed coming in a 46.3mm wide case — I love the big size. Though you should know by now how much I value larger watches.46.3mm can wear either bigger or little, in this circumstance it wears comfortably and doesn’t feel enormous. This isn’t a small watch though. This version of the watch is in titanium with a gray PVD coating on the most brushed alloy. Steel is used for elements of the outer bezel as well as Master Compressor style locks on the crown and pushers. The majority of the bezel is dark grey matte ceramic with all the numerals and markers sharply engraved in its own surface. There’s an applied steel pouch in the 60 minute mark on the bezel.The mixture of steel, ceramic, and titanium feels pleasing. Jaeger has attained an extremely aggressive look that is also legible, classy, and manly. It is a very good execution of a modern sports watch with a Swiss level of refinement.
Being a rugged watch also means that the Jaeger-LeCoultre is fitted with a solid case back. That means that you cannot see the caliber 757. This two barrel movement has a power reserve of 65 hours and consists out of 300 parts of which 45 are jewels. Rugged is also the strap, made from black Trieste cloth strap. It is a nice finish of a watch that shows a remarkable contrast and which is, in my opinion, the best looking Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Chronograph Ceramic to date.
Do not get me wrong, the Reverso is a modern legend and a real horological icon. But, JLC can masterfully pull “posh-sporty” like this, but can also take it further with pieces like the Master Compressor Extreme Lab 2 we covered last year. That model made use of a skeletonized dial up and farther exhibited the number which can be found inside the brand. For everyday use my cash would still land on the Chronograph, but JLC clearly has the ability to surprise, and I think this view is stunning. There are tons of chronographs within this ~$15,000 (give or take a couple thousand bucks) range, but I believe that is a choice with a personality unlike others, in a larger case than many of others, and another rarity.The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Chronograph Ceramic is thankfully not limited to a small run and is graced by what they call a “high-tech” black trieste fabric strap for added sport-appeal. Pricing is $13,900. The very first Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor I laid my hands on was a Master Compressor Memovox at 2004 as far as I recall, there were not any other Compressor versions at that moment. I really liked it and still do — but it would appear that the Master Compressor models in general are not as well received by collectors and enthusiasts as the more conservative Reverso and Master sets. I’ve tried and tested Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso and Master watches in the past, but never gave the Master Compressor really a opportunity.