One of Swatch Groups brands, Rado mostly concentrates on ceramic technology and a precisely contemporary artistic, unlike the other companies under the Swatch Group. The novelties are mostly focused on two themes; thin and skeletonized which nicely fits the brand. Despite the minimalistic and simple designs, Rado managed to throw in fascinating details those new timepieces.
The first watches we took a close look was the “True Thinline” series featuring quartz and mechanical movements. Both product lines feature impressively thin cases at 4.9 and 7mm. Let me add that the 4.9mm case is actually the thinnest and lightest watch Rado has ever produced.
The models in the collection successfully combine the traditional designs of Rado with cutting edge technology materials. The monobloc cases are made of ceramic. Unlike the common method, the ceramic cases feature no metal skeleton to be robust due to their injection type molding technology. This allows the thickness to be reduced drastically, as well as sculptural lines in a flowing look. When accompanied with a ceramic link bracelet, the watches look amazing and feel very comfortable on the wrist.
The quartz series are 39mm and come in white, black and plasma, which is a dark chrome-like color. They are powered with the super thin, 1mm ETA quartz movement. Bearing extremely minimal designs, the dials are offered in matching colors with the cases, featuring just hour and minute hands and a brand logo at 12 o’clock position. They are blunt and fascinating, especially in the Plasma Ceramic configuration which has to be and felt in person to appreciate the beauty. These models may not be for the loyal mechanic admirers as they are feature quartz movements. Due to their still and minimalistic looks, they may not be for every watch enthusiast either but for the ones with a more simple and modern appeal, these would be spot on choices.
The mechanical version, or True Thinline Skeleton, is 40mm and features a skeletonized, PVD ETA 2892. Unlike its quartz version, the Skeleton has a more common formed dial sporting an index around its outer line which adds some sort of a sporty character. The 7mm thickness is an impressive figure for an automatic and surely deserves to be called True Thinline. On the wrist, the watch is incredibly comfortable. The model is limited to 99 pieces only.
The next one was the True Open Heart Collection which features two automatic movement models with same design in white and black. Sharing the monobloc construction, these watches are a tad thicker than the True Thinline Collection at 10.4mm as they are powered with 80h power reserve movement ETA C07.631. As the name speak for itself, these are open heart watches, but not in the generic form we see on numerous different models. Instead of perforated parts through the dial, the semi-skeletonized movement is visible through a partly transparent surface material made of Mother Of Pearl in a total thickness of 0.6mm..!
MOP is mostly painted on its back with a primer tone in order to provide opaque look, which boosts the different color tones and glitters that make it such a unique material. Since Rado didn’t paint it, and used a very thin slice, what you see is like a strange organic film with subtle swirls that allows seeing the movement underneath in a mysterious way. These watches are limited to 500 pieces per color.
Up next is the Rado Hyperchrome Ultralight. As the name says, the watch is extremely light at 56grams. Featuring a trio of incredibly light materials silicon nitride ceramic, anodized aluminum, and hardened titanium, the HypeChrome UltraLight’s minimalist design and featherweight components place it on the cutting edge of fashion and technology.
The 43mm X 11mm measuring case is made of silicon nitride matte ultra-light high-tech ceramic with monobloc construction. Featuring aluminum and sandblasted parts with titanium inserts the case features double AR-coated sapphire crystals and offers WR50M rating.
Hyperchrome Ultralight is powered by the automatic ETA Caliber A31.L01. 21 jewels movement beats at 28,800 vph offers a power reserve of 64h when fully wound. The rotor is finished in black, with black anodized aluminum bridges to match the overall design.
The dial is designed in a dark grey color. We see the moving anchor symbol, black printed Rado and Automatic logos, and with black hands.
It comes on a grey NATO strap with titanium buckle and it is limited to 500 pieces only.
The last one was the DiaMaster Grande Seconde series. Being larger than the rest of the collection at 43mm, the DiaMaster employs Rado’s patented Plasma Ceramic material as well as a monobloc form, bringing the mid-case right up to the sapphire. Being different than the True Thinline Collection, they sport a more traditional lay out, and required some additional space due in order to have the asymmetrical dial and off-center movement. The watches are powered with the ETA 2899 movement.
Undoubtedly, the dial is the leading guy here. Featuring a big second’s sub-dial at nine o’clock position and off-center hour and minute dial, the unique design provides an attracting look. Around the sub-dials is “Clous de Paris” pattern, adding some texture to the negative space. The DiaMaster Grande Seconde models are truly appealing timepieces with a bold look on the wrist.