Itâ€™s been some time since weâ€™ve featured Bernhardt on our pages but thatâ€™s not due to any fault of the brand. Â Today, weâ€™ll correct that by focusing in on a rather nice example thatâ€™s been reintroduced to their lineup, the Bernhardt Binnacle GMT II.
Now, you know me, Iâ€™m all for a good GMT, and that is of course what we have here with theÂ Bernhardt Binnacle GMT II. Â Powered by the ETA 2836, youâ€™ve got the bold GMT hand swinging around the center pinion. Â To help with that time telling youâ€™ve got a 24-hour bezel affixed to the case around the sapphire crystal (digging on that cyclops as well). Â While one of my favorite personal GMT watches has a rotating bezel, Iâ€™ve come to lean towards the fixed bezel, particularly on GMT watches. Â Sure, a rotating one will give you the capability to track 3 time zones, but with a fixed, you get a more compact (in terms of height) case, and I value that more than a third timezone.
Case height would be critical here on theÂ Bernhardt Binnacle GMT II, as itâ€™s only a 39mm diameter case, so proportions will be key here. Â On the dial, proportions look to be good as well, with the 12-6-9 (in what I think of as the Bell & Ross font) separated out by the shark tooth indices (my mental association here is with Omega and Benarus). Â Between those elements and the larger GMT hand, it could make those hour and minute hands feel a tad undersized. Â Iâ€™m guessing theyâ€™re not, as theyâ€™re edged in black paint, but the eye focuses in on the white, lumed, bits, and thereâ€™s that. Â Likely just a victim of how photos work, and when the light catches it in person, well, then itâ€™s probably a different story. Â Worth noting that this isn’t as “problematic” on the white-dialed version.
If you couldnâ€™t tell from that prior paragraph, I feel that theÂ Bernhardt Binnacle GMT II pulls together a variety of references. Â The obvious one being the Rolex Explorer II models, but youâ€™ve got other brands in play there as well. Â This could be messy, but it works here. Â For me, the big keys (aside from the GMT complication) is that fixed 24-hour bezel and the cyclops. Â Pair in the Swiss movement, and youâ€™ve got – what looks to me to be – one great bargain at a price of $624. Â Weâ€™ve inquired about a review loaner, but theyâ€™re not in yet, and with production being limited to 200 pieces, that may not happen. Â If one of you picks one up, please hop on over to our Slack channel and tell us all about it! Â bernhardtwatch.com
- Brand & Model:Â Bernhardt Binnacle GMT II
- Price:Â $624
- Who we think it might be for:Â You like your watches with a bit of a vintage feel, and while you are price sensitive, you still want a Swiss engine
- Would I buy one for myself based on what Iâ€™ve seen? Indeed I would – this one looks great, and the prior Bernhardt I reviewed left a favorable impression.
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be:Â The bracelet could use some love. Â Folded end link, and a mix of three-part and one-part links gives it an inconsistent feel.
- What spoke to me the most about this watch:Â Fixed bezel, cyclops magnifier, GMT, and a compact case. Â AKA, all of it.
Tech Specs from Bernhardt
- 39 mm
- Swiss ETAÂ 2836 automatic movement modified for GMT
- Black or white dial with fixed 24-Hour bezel
- Independent adjustment of 4th hand for second time zone
- Date window at 3 o’clock
- 316-L surgical stainless steel case
- Sapphire crystal with Date Magnifier
- Signed screw-down crown
- Signed stainless steel bracelet with screws
- Numbered case back
- 200 meters water resistance
- Super Luminova on hands and indices
- Limited edition of 200
- 2 year warranty