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WATCH REVIEW Panerai Luminor 1950 Submersible 2500 Destro PAM 358

Editor's opinion
75 / 100
The Panerai are inherently huge diving watches with a skillfully maintained rarity. But some models are more rare than others. Review of the PAM 358 which reaches the Panerai concept to its paroxysm.
Straight to the Point

Panerai Luminor 1950 Submersible 2500 Destro

Ref.: PAM 358
$8,900.00 US retail price July 4th, 2010
Pros
  • design and uncompromised manufacture
  • exclusivity
  • comfort
Cons
  • basic movement for the price
  • leather strap with a fragile appearance
Brand Panerai
Model name
Luminor 1950 Submersible 2500 Destro
Reference
PAM 358
Case material
Titanium / Steel
Case diameter (without crown)
47 mm
Case diameter (crown included)
52 mm
Movement type
Automatic
Caliber
OP III
Base Caliber
ETA 7750 without chrono nor date module
Functions
Hour
Minute
Second
Crystal
Dual-face crystal with anti-reflective coating
Power reserve
42h
Transparent back
No
Lug width
26 mm
Length from lug to lug
55 mm
Case thickness
20 mm
Clasp type
Pin buckle
Clasp material
Titanium / steel
Total weight
170 grammes
Retail price USA at July 4th, 2010
$8,900.00
Comfort (/15) 12
Movement (/20) 9
Movement Optimisation / Garnishment (/5) 2
Ease of handling and adjustment (/5) 4
Movement control proceeded by the Manufacture / horlogical awards (/3) 2
Power reserve (/2) 1
Complications (/5) 0
Finishing (/20) 16
Dial finishing (/6) 4
Case finishing (/6) 6
Quality of garnishment / caseback engraving quality (/2) 1
Crystal quality (/4) 3
Clasp finishing (inner and extern) (/2) 2
Functionality (/20) 20
Diurnal legibility (/5) 5
Night legibility (/4) 4
Water resistance (/3) 3
Strap : ease of size adjustment + ease of substitution (/4) 4
Clasp : quality and safety (/4) 4
Additional items (/10) 7
Limited edition (/3) 3
Watch delivered with several straps (/2) 1
Quality of the watch box (/1) 1
Portability with shirtsleeves buttoned (/2) 0
Goodies included (/1) 1
Understandability of the brochure (/1) 1
Value for money (/15) 11
When to wear it ? To dive into the Titanic wreckage. Or just to go to the swimming pool with your kids !
Users opinion
72%
like this watch
Do you like this watch?

The Panerai are inherently huge diving watches with a skillfully maintained rarity.
But some models are more rare than others.
Waterproof to 2500 m, limited to 100 pieces, only available at Chronopassion in Paris and costing around € 10.000, the latest PAM 358 reaches the Panerai concept to its paroxysm.

 

Panerai PAM 358: A declination of the PAM 194

This Luminor 1950 Submersible Destro (for its crown on the left) is not purely a new model.

It is a declination, with a Chronopassion’s touch, of the PAM 194, a special edition of 1,000 pieces produced in 2004.

Shaped in one single titanium bloc, the 1950 classic case has more rounded and worked flanks than the classic Luminor casings.
It visually seems less massive.

 

Panerai PAM 358
An excellent finishing

The entirely brushed finishing is excellent.

The bezel and the crown-protection are made of steel in order to avoid any sensitivity to scratches of the titanium: a judicious choice for these watches that are exposed to any kinds of blows !
The other advantage is that the contrast between the matt grey of the titanium and the satiny grey of the steel is very pleasant to be seen !

In order to resist to extreme pressures (the watch is tested at 3200 m, so 320 kg per cm2), the rounded sapphire is 5,9 mm thick and the titanium back is around 5 mm.
With such a debauchery of testosterone in the matter of manufacture, people can expect an anvil around the wrist…. but not at all !

 

In order to resist to extreme pressures (the watch is tested at 3200 m, so 320 kg per cm2), the rounded sapphire is 5,9 mm thick and the titanium back is around 5 mm...

A softly dive watch

Once worn, the 358 is paradoxically a soft watch : the 47 mm of diameter allows a good distribution of the 170 grams of weight (which is reasonable regarding the size of the watch, thanks to the titanium).

The comfort is excellent, especially if it is worn on the left hand because the crown protection does not press on the wrist.
Only the thickness can startle but people get used to it quickly.

The readability is perfect in every situation thanks to the sobriety of the dial and to the hands that are generously coated with Super Luminova.

The turning bezel is easy to manipulate. The clicks are straight and tight.

It exudes solidity.

 

A second strap, perfect for diving

As some brave owner will maybe go dabbling some octopuses or rays with this nice toy, Panerai delivers a second special diving nylon strap on a buckle that takes up the lever principle of the crown protection.

Well thought, it seems of an unfailing solidity and allows adjusting the length of the strap to each millimeter, which is useful when wearing wetsuit.

 

What to remember

To draw a conclusion, this piece does not lack of arguments.
It will please both the brand enthusiasts who are seeking for an exclusive piece, as well as for the amateurs of extreme diving watches who will be seduced by its impeccable manufacture.

As for all the Panerai special editions, its quotation on the second-hand market should remain very close to the initial price – even rising !

Its hence a nearly reasonable purchase, if it can be found !

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