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PolonusTM

H-factory PAM 224 Firenze chrono review

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PolonusTM

In December 2005 Officine Panerai announced „Panerai Firenze Special Editions” watches:

 

PAM 228 Luminor GMT

PAM 229 Luminor Marina

and the one this review of replication is about - PAM 224 Luminor Chrono

 

All the three were available as a set, PAM 781 „Frienze Special Edition 3pc watch set”.

 

PAM0781_01_zpsazsg1h5v.jpg

 

All these watches are being replicated by H-factory (228 soon!) since they have (H-factory) gen 228 & 224 so blue sunburst dial replication should have has some advantages on previous versions I suppose.

 

The gen PAM 224 is the chrono with the gorgeous blue dial and special case-back engraving.This was specifically created for the Officine Panerai Florence boutique in 2005 and is limited to 100 pieces worldwide. In reality, the watch was available or importable to some other boutiques as well.

 

Some gen photos in normal, neutral light:

 

panerai-pam224-19181-044_zps51svzdyt.jpg

L1000316_zpsumdlqwen.jpg

L1000314_zpskwlodadl.jpg

L1000308_zpsmjme7ggz.jpg

L1050839_zpsqernu2h0.jpg

IMG_9913_zpsqy547uas.jpg

 

I was quite tempted since it is the only Daylight chronometer available with fully polished case - so that's why I bought it. There are major 2010 & 2013 (Noob) previous versions of this replication but:

 

- blue dial was not expected to be replicated correctly due to lack of gen to compare/match - it is crazy shiny on subdials for an example…

- the watch was replicated from photos since all previous version have brushed chrono buttons where they are polished in gen. The only not polished elements on genuine PAM 224 is CG lever and slopes on caseback.

 

..and I am not even mentioning all these ugly versions with faux chrono, see-trough casebacks and so on… ;) Some makers tried to beef their offering by including ss bracelet which was not as per gen.

 

The funny thing is difference in casebacks - I found some gen units to have fully polished caseback while some others - only polished center and brushed „slopes”. The version H-factory replicated was the latter one, most common. It might be also possible the fully polished casebacks on gens are the effect of aftermarket renovation polishing….who knows… without proper equipment it is easier to just polish everything out.

 

GEN polished:

polishedslopes_zps2l1jtg2p.jpg

 

GEN standard:

brushedslopes_zpswipgj6aj.jpg

 

The most unique aspect of this watch (except being almost fully polished) is it’s faboulous blue sunburst dial. The dynamic of visual changes as light reflects from it’s surface is something to be observed, not once - but many times, since it is rather more subtle than crazy.

 

The gen (on available photos) has suburst effect somewhat dimmed while subdials seem to be a bit darker. On photos of previous reps of this watch you can see this dial shines in many impressive ways, including subdials’ crazy reflections. I suppose this was the way photographers did their best to capture such visual effects in the way „more shiny = better replication”.

 

This is one of examples of crazy impressive but not as per gen dial reflection (Noob’s 2013 version) on photo taken by RWG member Gazzla:

 

Gazzla_photo_zpsdkf7akau.jpg

 

This H-factory replication has subdials a bit dimmed but after researching many gen photos - I am sure maker’s claim of having gen of this watch can be true - you need multiple light sources to show sunburst effect on dial and on subdials at the same time. Basicly, in normal daylight without strong sunlight - it looks like on this gen photo taken from WatchUWant video (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AR0h4NXurWU):

 

watchuwant_zpsq7pzqu4i.jpg

 

The movement is „new breed” of A7753 which makes it possible to forward date using concealed button on 10’o clock. So much for „new breed” - the minute counter hand has the same free play as it was with „first breed” of Asian 7753 so it is by design, I suppose.

 

Comparing the rep dial with gen dial shows correct positions of everything, including date window.

 

3wersje_zpskgbh1mmf.jpg

 

Another topic, „updated date wheel”, let’s see, gen figures on left. Some digits are spot on (specially one-digit figures) while some others are too thin (dates with „2” and „3” on first positions) and with wrong spacing.

 

dialcompare_zpsntlypkw5.jpg

 

The leather bracelet - looks like real croc strap, a bit stiff, pain in the ass when inserting into deployant clasp (folding buckle) but doable. Dark blue, under strong light it looks like gen strap from photos.

 

Summary: the watch has some advantages over previous versions:

 

- polished chrono buttons

- more correct (not crazy) dial - albeit maybe subdial should be more „alive” and luminowa digits could be tad thinner or maybe it is just on photos…

- real good quality croc strap (which comes with price - and I tried the route of „give me the rubber instead of croc” but it was no go…)

- the caseset is more refined, even internal walls of lugs are fully flat and polished (no machining visible)

- chrono buttons don’t get scratched against main case when being pressed

- the shorter part of chrono seconds hand is shorter and doesn’t protrude so much over the top of „12” on hour totalizer as it was the case with previous replication (observe it on Gazzla’s photo above). On gen you can see „12” is fully visible, on reps - the top of „12” is covered by too long chrono hand. On this H-factory rep it is much much better, almost as per gen.

 

Definitely ALE’s „gen feel” is there and I am more than happy with this one. If you can swallow higher price due to real croc strap - go for it :)

 

Some rep photos:

 

224H%20-%2022_zpsv8geubsj.jpg

224H%20-%2021_zps65qaihni.jpg

224H%20-%2020_zpsyv1nbsdh.jpg

224H%20-%2019_zps64tuigur.jpg

224H%20-%2018_zpsxrb7xash.jpg

224H%20-%2017_zps0gpw23jt.jpg

224H%20-%2016_zpscaqzs4sc.jpg

224H%20-%2015_zpsanz9fi6r.jpg

224H%20-%2014_zpspgqddvub.jpg

224H%20-%2013_zpsnylypxbc.jpg

224H%20-%2012_zps2rzwo2rh.jpg

224H%20-%2011_zpsabjiz9tp.jpg

224H%20-%2010_zpsibeclm8n.jpg

224H%20-%209_zpsxrls71ft.jpg

224H%20-%208_zps8p1ys6y9.jpg

224H%20-%203_zpsvdw0fd3f.jpg

224H%20-%201_zpswxw2ov00.jpg

 

and some video:

 

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baxter

fantastic review :thumbsup:

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ALE7575

Thanks Polonus

 

As usually, a nice, comprehensive and useful review

 

Dial and hands seem superior in some aspects over Noob

 

The case and bezel seems similar or even better than Noob

 

Polished chrono pushers is a clear advantage

 

I have no opportunity to compare casebacks but I agree with you that, from the pics, H maker seems more detailed and better

 

Regarding date wheel fonts, I thought from the catalogue pics that they were much worse. Seeing your comparison pics from the real thing with the gen fonts, I think this issue is smaller than I thought. Although they are clearly thinner and different, but few noticeable at real size

 

The gen-like appearance is there. And this is very important

 

IMO, despite the thinner date fonts, this is the best version at this moment

 

That will be my next purchase, and you will be the responsible !!

 

Thanks again

ALE

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Bonnovox

Amazing

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5imon

Hi Polonus

 

I do like your watch. This may be my next purchase, I have been looking for a few weeks now and I keep coming back to this one.

 

Polonus

you were saying the minute counter hand has the same free play as it was with „first breed” of Asian 7753 so it is by design.

What actually happens with the hand, does it wobble as you move the watch or when its reset or all the time when ticking.?

Just wondering which TD you used for your purchase?

 

5imon

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botto4

Hi Guys,

Someone know if the three places box Is available?

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mysterio

Hi Guys,

Someone know if the three places box Is available?

 

I can't be 100% sure, but 99.99999% at least. The box is a special edition one for the PAM224, 228 and 229 set. It's not even a pear box like the other special edition boxes and those aren't repped so I would presume this more uncommon box would not be repped as well.

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