- Date display with Cyclops lens and 2.5x magnification
- High-quality chronometer: in-house caliber 3136
- Stainless steel or bicolor combination: 18-karat white or yellow gold with stainless steel
- Mid-sized: 41-mm cases go with many wrist sizes
- Classic design features: domed or fluted bezels, stick indices, Roman or Arabic numerals, numerous dials to choose from
A Reworked Classic
No other watch manufacturer is as celebrated for their consistency as Rolex
. One secret to this Genevan manufacturer's success are their iconic designs
. Furthermore, watchmakers consider Rolex calibers to be some of the best and most reliable available. Improvements to models occur only in minute detail, helping the designs remain recognizable. The Datejust
has a similar story. It had its first premiere in 1945, but it took 64 years before Rolex released the Datejust II. However, the original Datejust remains in production and both watches have been available since 2009. The most striking change was the Datejust II's diameter of 41 mm
, an increase of 5 mm from its predecessor. It retains the characteristic mark of the Datejust: a date display with a Cyclops lens at three o'clock.
Buying Advice for the Rolex Datejust II
If you're searching for the ideal everyday watch, you've finally found it: the 41-mm three-hand Rolex Datejust II. This trendy, elegant watch features a date display and is waterproof to 100 m. Therefore, it's the perfect companion for swimming as well as tennis or golf. Thanks to its adjustable clasp, you can fit the bracelet to your wrist in no time at all. Furthermore, the watch is protected from shocks and jolts thanks to Rolex's Paraflex shock protection system. Headed back to the office after a trip to the golf club? No problem - the watch and its elegant design coordinate just as well with a suit. Versions with Roman numerals exemplify its dress watch status. Pre-owned, well-maintained stainless steel models cost around 5,000 euros. For a few hundred euros more, you can buy a new model. Bicolor versions fall into the 7,000 euro price range, and pre-owned they're about 1,000 euros less. Diamond-set versions, on the other hand, can cost over 20,000 euros.
The Datejust II is comparable to the Omega Globemaster
, a retro watch that enchants with its simple elegance. It displays the date at six o'clock and has a fluted bezel. In terms of price, it runs anywhere from 4,000 to 30,000 euros.
- Rolex Datejust II starts around 5,000 euros
- Diamond-set solid gold and stainless steel models
- Classic 36-mm Datejust model
- Alternative with date and day of the week display: Rolex Day-Date
Similar Watches from Other Brands
- Omega Globemaster (starting around 4,000 euros)
- Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra (starting around 2,000 euros)
- Automatic Grand Seiko (starting around 3,000 euros)
Like its sibling, the Datejust II has an iconic design: an Oyster case together with a three-piece link Oyster bracelet, a date display with a Cyclops lens, and a fluted gold bezel. The gold bezel references the very first Datejust from 1945, although today it's available in white or yellow gold, too. If you're not a fan of the fluted look, you have the option of a smooth stainless steel bezel.
The cases of many watches in this series are made of noncorrosive 904L stainless steel. It's a hallmark of Rolex and also used in the aerospace industry. The steel can be highly polished, resulting in a bright, glossy case, case back, and three-piece link Oyster bracelet. The bracelet is partly polished and partly brushed, creating a contrast against the shiny case and bracelet links. The bracelet can be opened and closed with all types of Rolex clasps. In particular, the Oyster clasp offers a practical extra: the Easylink extension system, which allows you to lengthen the bracelet by 5 mm. This comes in handy if your wrist swells on warm days or after working out due to the heat. With its domed links and thin clasp, the bracelet is comfortable to wear. It doesn't trap hair or pinch skin.
The dial is available in black, white, silver, or blue. Sunburst patterns on the dial add texture and shine. The dial's thick bar indices are made of 18-karat gold and don't tarnish even after decades of wear. They're filled with luminous material, as are the hands, making the watch easy to read in the dark. The iconic Rolex crown is at the 12-hour marking. Versions with Roman or Arabic numerals as indices instead of bars are also available. The date display is located at three o'clock and is magnified 2.5x by the Cyclops lens.
If you prefer a nobler, more refined look, then the stainless steel and white gold
or stainless steel and yellow gold bicolor versions are good choices. Like the pure stainless steel models, they are priced in the four-figure range. The white gold model provides a truly subtle statement; upon first glance it's easily mistaken for stainless steel. However, you notice the difference on your wrist: Gold is heavier than steel. The Rolex Day-Date
is also made of gold. It displays the date and day of the week written out in full at 12 o'clock and was the first watch to do so worldwide. The watch, nicknamed the "President watch," is exclusively available in gold or platinum.
Founder Hans Wilsdorf emphasized the importance of precision, reliability, and robustness in Rolex watches. Rolex calibers are considered prime examples of the art of watchmaking. Caliber 3136 powers the Datejust II. It's based off of the 3135, but has an added extra feature, Rolex's Paraflex shock protection system. Thanks to this system, the watch can withstand shocks and jolts 50% better than other protection systems. It also brings the balance staff back to its proper position more reliably. The Paraflex system was first introduced in 2005.
The blue Parachrom hairspring can also handle shocks incredibly well. Since it's made of a special zirconium-niobium alloy, it's also non-magnetic. The Breguet spring, with its upraised coil and reduced curvature, "breathes" more freely and increases precision. The watch can be regulated via Microstella nuts located on the inner side of the balance rim. You can adjust them with the help of a special tool. Every Rolex watch is certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). It then undergoes even stricter certification tests in house. Rolex chronometers only deviate by a maximum of 2 seconds a day.
In most cases the watchmakers are the only ones to see the movement, but some parts are still elaborately decorated. The winding rotor is partly skeletonized and, like the automatic bridge, features a sunburst pattern. The bridges also feature perlage finishing, the screw heads are polished, and the edges are both polished and beveled. The blue hairspring and red crown wheels add bright color accents to the otherwise colorless movement.