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A dream-come-true for dive watch lovers: CONGER by CX Swiss Military Watch

January 12, 2017

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Watch Review: CONGER by CX Swiss Military Watch

January 12, 2017

 

Company History:
CX SWISS MILITARY WATCH™’s history goes back to 1963 and thousands of chronographs, chronometers and high precision watches have left their premises since. The quality of their timepieces is legendary and won CX SWISS MILITARY WATCH™ worldwide acclaim.

The ruggedness and the legendary precision of the CX SWISS MILITARY WATCH™ timepieces have become the benchmark for many a producer of professional chronographs and chronometers. Uncompromising functionality, innovative design and state-of-the-art technology secured CX SWISS MILITARY WATCH™ a well-earned place in the hall of fame of military timepieces. Both professionals and collectors love the attention to detail displayed in the CX SWISS MILITARY WATCH™ timepieces and many a collector’s item saw its value spiraling over the years. 

 

Released at BASELWORLD 2014, the CX Swiss Military CONGER is a prime example of Swiss precision-craftsmanship. Few chronographs have been as rigorously tested as CX Swiss Military professional time-pieces which have proved to be withstand the extremest of conditions.

 

Conger is a genus of marine congridae eels. It includes some of the largest types of eels, ranging up to 3 m (10 ft) in length, in the case of the European conger. Large congers have often been observed by divers during the day in parts of the Mediterranean Sea, and both European and American congers are sometimes caught by fishermen along the European and North American coasts.

 

Technical data:

  • Swiss Made® Ronda cal. 5030D quartz movement, 13 jewels battery life approximately 36 months

  • Two-tone stainless steel case/bracelet

  • Helium relief valve

  • Screw-down crown & pushers

  • Anti-reflective sapphire crystal

  • 200 ATM / 2’000 meters water resistant

  • Case diameter 48mm, thickness 18.5mm, weight 305gr

Packaging:

The packaging is extremely well done and clean. The outer most box is a CX Military labeled cardboard box which contains the inner backlit box which is labeled with the traditional and awesome Swiss logo with the red shield and white cross. This has to be one of the most recognizable symbols around. Inside the inner box is the operating instructions, owners manual, magnetic strip warranty card, polishing cloth and, of course, the watch.

 

The inner box is a beautiful yellow and the watch is attached to a matching yellow pillow. The dial and case back have a protective clear plastic over them and so does the bracelet. The first thing I notice when I pick up the watch out of the box is how solid the watch feels. It has a nice weight to it and it feels like you are getting your money’s worth from the get go. First impressions are that this is a quality piece that is packed with extreme care and attention to detail.

 

 

The Dial:

We all have our what we prefer on a watch and watch we don’t prefer it’s normal and completely natural. It would be pretty boring if we liked all the same things, if that were the case there would be one standard watch out there and that’s it. With that being said, I traditionally gravitate towards non-chrono, three hand dial watches. I didn’t know how I would feel about the CX chronograph. What I noticed first was the black dial, it is absolutely stunning. Everything on this dial was well planned out and is completely balanced. I personally prefer numerals for hour markers, but the raised applied round hour markers are beautiful and make perfect sense. If numerals were used for this dial, it would make the dial way too busy.

 

The raised markers add a touch of dressy class to the overall ruggedness of the CONGER this is due in part to the hour markers being encircled with a high polished steel ring. Around the outer edge of the dial is “train track” style minute/seconds markers which I personally love that simple detail. At the 3, 6, 9, and 12 hour markers are triangles coated with lume and at the other hour markers are circles. Just under the 12 hour marker features the CX Military name and red shield with the white cross logo just below. The dial features just the right amount of text and logo to keep a nice clean balance with the sub dials and hour markers. This dial is very well balanced. Above the hour sub-dial is the model of the watch name CONGER and below the sub dial at the 6 o clock hour, reads ‘SWISS MADE’. The hour hand has a nice large triangle tip which makes it really easy to read the time in low lit or under murky water when the lume is charged. The large red seconds hand has a arrow shape almost like a harpoon and it has a nice lumed triangle at the point and it ticks as most quartz movements do.

 

 

 

CX did something here that you rarely see and I completely appreciate it. Instead of simply removing the marker at the hour 4 marker for the date window, CX left the marker in place and also included the date window right below it. And it completely works here keeping a nice balance to the dial. There are 3 sub dials one for seconds, minutes and hours used for timing purposes which come in handy when traveling or more importantly for measuring time for oxygen when using this watch when diving. The dial is really easy to read thanks to the AR coated sapphire crystal sits slightly above the case and is flat not domed.

 

The Case:

The case is built like a tank on the CONGER with no compromise in terms of design. The 48mm x 18mm case was designed to endure some harsh environments and outdoor activities with the idea that the wearer wouldn’t have to worry if the watch can handle it. The short slightly curved lugs let the watch sit comfortably upon the wrist. This watch is a large watch, but with the shorter curved lugs, it wears smaller than what it actually is. All three crowns are screw-down to ensure a tight water resistance when the watch and it’s wearer are submerged within the depths of the water. The crowns are easy to grab and unscrew/screw. The middle crown sets the date, time and is signed with the Swiss cross logo. The watch comes with very easy to follow operating instructions. Each function works flawlessly here thanks in part to the Ronda Swiss Quartz movement cal.5530 D. More about the movement later.

 

 

 

The non-crown side features an automatic helium release valve that basically protects the case from exploding when submerged in depths of the water and when returning to the surface. The case is mostly brushed stainless steel with thin lines of polished steel along the edges to give it a touch a dressiness. I’ve owned some all high polished diver/tool watches which never quite made sense to me, because these style of watches are designed for “sports” yet the high polishing shows every little scratch. I buy watches to wear them, not to baby them in a display case.

 

 

 

The bezel is a smooth operating 60 click unilateral rotating bezel. There is a little play in the bezel with is pretty normal with a 60 click vs. 120 click which is more precise. The bezel though does glide very smooth and is very addicting to want to turn it all the time. The bezel has hex screws on the sides which matches the bracelet set bars which adds to the watches overall tool feel, it’s a nice little attention to detail. The bezel is a combination of steel and hardened rubber which matches the bracelet beautifully.

 

The dial and bezel features some really nice lume which glows like a flashlight for hours after only being exposed to a light source for a few minutes. The lume is evenly coated with a precise eye which is something I am nit picky about on my watches. The lume must be evenly coated, the triangle on the bezel at the 12 o clock position must perfectly align with the 12 and 6 on the dial and the signed crown logo must be straight when the crown is in the fully closed position. The CONGER meets all but the crown criteria which is only off by a little bit. The lume photo is not enhanced, this is how bright this bad boy glows.

 

 

 

The bracelet is brushed stainless steel with hardened rubber down the middle of the bracelet. I’m not sure how I feel about this, this will be something I address after wearing the watch for awhile to see how this holds up against long wear time. The clasp is very easy to operate with nothing spectacular but extremely functional. There is a micro adjustment which comes in handy for people who have that in between wrist size. The bracelet appears to be very solid and well made just like the case of the watch.