Ralf and Zach duke it out over the new Black Bay 58 from Tudor
I wasn’t really sold on the idea of getting a BB58 – I was happy and content with the size and overall bulk of the normal Black Bay line. I own the BB GMT and the BB Chrono in steel. So going smaller and flatter wasn’t really something I “needed” or wanted. My wrist is nearly 20cm and I can even wear a Panerai 45mm without it looking clownish.
But…. And this is a very interesting BUT. It works. The BB 58 is smaller by 2 mm and much flatter by 3 whole mm which in turn makes it feel so much less chunky. It’s a bit like the OP39 I sold in December – a watch that is just so insanely comfortable, just feels, sits and wears “right” on my wrist at least. Back in December, I sold my Rolex Oyster Perpetual 39mm in blue because I missed the date and actually liked the DJ II with its 41mm better. Did I make the same mistake twice and get another blue dial watch with the same size and again missing the date function? Am I really that stupid?
Yes and no. While there is no denying that the missing date cannot be ignored, everything else is different. The OP39 is a masterpiece in comfort and so is the BB58. It’s just the perfect size. For people like me with watches usually being not smaller than 40mm it is a change, but thanks to its design the watch wears nicely. It has a good presence on the wrist, the polished parts of the case and bracelet let it sparkle a bit.
The fact that bezel and dial share the same colour make the watch appear larger than it is, so it fits smaller wrists perfectly but doesn’t look small – a clever trick and probably the reason why Tudor did not just shrink the Black Bay in blue (M79230b-0008) but also changed the dial color.
So to come back to my question if I am really that stupid – no, I am not – the watch I bought from the proceeds of the Oyster Perpetual was a lovely Datejust 41mm with steel bezel, oyster bracelet and black dial – it’s awesome and I love it. The Tudor now fits the more sporty wearing pattern I have at the moment and I couldn’t be happier with it.
As you can see in here – the blue is a special navy blue that looks quite dark blue most of the time but can look like a rich sky blue when hit by bright sunlight in some angles. It’s a matte dial that especially comes out compared to the Omega Seamster Professional 300m ceramic, the Omega dial is a mirror-like finish which has its own special charm.
Let’s talk of the internals – Tudor has only two lines that have a see-through case back – the North Flag and the Glamour line. The Glamour line gained the glass case back when it was upgraded to the MT (Manufacture Tudor) movement. And while it is rather a workhorse movement it has its charm too – it’s not the richest decoration, perlage and polishing but certainly better to look at than other movements. However in the diver line, we get the standard plain caseback and are not graced with the view of the movement.
MT5602 vs MT5402
Tudor had to shrink the movement of the original Black Bay line as it did not fit the smaller case. The MT5402 has the same features like it’s bigger brother, the MT5602. Both tick for about 70 hours when fully wound and not worn and both have a silicon balance spring giving them good anti-magnetic properties. Besides the size the only other difference seems to be the two additional jewels being used in the MT5402 going from 25 to 27 jewels. The movement did shrink from 31.8 to 26 mm and height was reduced from 6.5mm to 4.99 allowing for the smaller and more elegant case shape. The 5402 also features a Tungsten monobloc rotor.
Accuracy, Warranty & Service:
Tudor sends all their BB58 movements to COSC for official chronometer certification – roughly that means it should keep the time between -4 and +6 seconds per day – however, Tudor does something in addition, like Rolex with their “Superlative Chronometer” self-certification, Tudor does the same and regulates the watch to a tighter -2 to +4 seconds per day when fully assembled. My own watch ticks happily with +1 second per day but I have only had 2 days to measure so far.
Since 2020 warranty is now a solid 5 years. Tudor now recommends their watches to be serviced every 10 years “depending on the model and real-life usage”. That’s good to hear that they trust their work to last this long without servicing.
In conclusion – it’s a watch that is worth it’s money – it currently is keeping +2 seconds per day accuracy and I couldn’t be happier with the wearing experience – it’s just so damn comfortable. Another option you might want to explore is putting it on a Vanguard rubber strap – perfect for the summer and it gives the watch an even sportier look!
The Authorized Dealer I purchased this watch from told me today that they now have a 6-8 months waiting list for this watch – so better put our name down and get on the list quick – otherwise your only choice is to buy from the grey market dealers but I am sure they will ask for a pretty premium.
This watch gets a thumbs up from me and is a keeper!!
Today we are going to be discussing the Tudor 79030B – Black Bay 58 Navy Blue. The 2nd release in the fifty-eight line, it retains the same case profile as the Black Bay Fifty Eight but distinguishes itself from the original with a blue bezel, dial, and silver accents. With a case diameter of 39mm, a lug to lug of 47mm, and a case thickness of 11.9mm this is a watch that can fit any wrist (whether large or small).
The star of the show here is the addition of the colour of the year: blue. This however is not your run of the mill blue. Ranging from a dark navy to dark teal depending on the light, there is a nice matte grainy texture upon closer examination in the metal. The coined bezel matches the dial tone perfectly and provides a great tactile experience when rotating. One noticeable characteristic of the fifty-eight line that is missing in this reference is the gilt accents.
While controversial to some, the reality is this watch is not so much a homage to the Tudor 7924 as it is to later blue references introduced in the 60’s and 70’s. As more and more variations are inevitably introduced the 58 nomenclature will only signal that the watch is 39mm vs the 41mm of the standard model.
The movement inside is the same as the first Black Bay Fifty Eight: Manufacture Calibre MT5402. Designed especially for medium-sized TUDOR watches, the Movement is 26 mm in diameter and displays hour, minute and second functions. Although covered by a solid case back, underneath, the movement has a clean and industrial finish typical of TUDOR. This workhorse movement has been designed to ensure robustness, longevity and reliability featuring a 70-hour power reserve, full balance bridge, and COSC chronometer certification..
The Black Bay Fifty-Eight comes with a riveted steel bracelet with polished and satin finish. The clasp is fitted with ceramic ball bearings to ensure a secure closure over time. Micro adjustment can be found as well, with the option to effectively add or remove approximately a half link of space. This is really the only kryptonite of an otherwise perfect watch. Having been designed to appeal to smaller wrists, the folding clasp extends quite a bit and as a result may make it hard for smaller wrists to find their perfect fit. For larger wrists, this will not be a problem whatsoever and is why I encourage those who think it would be too small for their wrists to try one on. Let’s remember that Sean Connery in his role as James Bond wore a 37.5mm submariner big crown that by no means looked like a boy’s watch on his wrist.
This new addition brings a lot of value to the table, especially for those who want to avoid fauxtina. Having previously owned the first BB58, I always found myself having to make up reasons to wear it vs my Rolex Submariner 114060. By no means are those two watches twins, but aesthetically the blue provides a much larger degree of differentiation. When all is said and done, was this release a complete fan service? Yes. But its not often brands really hear consumer demand and translate it into a new product.
So I for one am quite thankful and excited for the future of the 58 line.