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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi folks

Please go easy on me, it's my first Breitling and my first post here.

I've admired the Aerospace for a while now. Love the looks, love the accuracy and don't mind it being quartz. For the past few years (after my Tag Heuer 2000 chrono gave up on me) I've been putting up with a Casio ana-digi radio controlled solar thingy (great timekeeping, low maintenance but just feels so cheap and unsatisfying to wear and use).

So, finally bought the aerospace evo and really want to love it. Should be my ideal watch and it almost is.... But...

What's the deal with the hands completely obscuring the digital chronograph? Between 5 and 7 it is difficult to make out the digits because of the hour hand. Between 25 past and 35 minutes past the hour it is virtually impossible. You can't even tilt the watch to peek under or around the hands because the display blacks out. How can a 'professional' watch have a feature which you can't read for several hours of the day?

I've taken to re-setting the time to move the hands out of the way before I use the chronograph, but it's hardly a practical solution and I worry that regularly doing this will introduce 'slop' into the hand alignment.

Am I the only one to experience this? Is there a workaround as I REALLY like the watch but for this issue?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
No-one?

Is this problem reading the digital display normal on this watch or have I got one with a digital display which is too sensitive to viewing angles? If I could tilt it and 'peek' under the hands to see the display it would be better.

Or have I, in my inexperience here, touched on a criticism that should never be spoken or acknowledged? Apologies if I have. I just want to find out how to make a watch that I dearly love actually practical to usr.
 

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I'll bite. Not a problem here.

I've been wearing an Aerospace off and on since about 1993-94. Specifically, NO, the hands being over the display has never bothered me. It can be a minor nuisance, but very small one. Honestly, I never even notice now days. My issue with the display, is that they seem to keep getting harder to read the older that I get. Oh well, thats my aging eyes fault, and not the watch. The display looked really crisp back in my 20s and 30s. So did a lot of other things. They still look good when I put on a pair of Grandpa glasses. :-|

My ONLY issue with the Evo, is the skeleton hour hand. It's like they tried to make the watch more legible by carving out 1/2 of the hour hand. Instead of carving out the outer portion to make the DISPLAY more legible, they carved out the base of the hand so the LOGO would be more legible. Who cares about telling the time, as long as the wings aren't covered four hours a day. Going back to the aging eyes thingy, at certain times of the day, I really have to hunt for that hour hand. I really wish they would have just left it solid. Oh well, I'm over it. :-x

That's literally my only "real" complaint. Overall, the watch gets a solid 8.5 on a 10 scale from me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi

Thanks for replying. I honestly wasn't trying to get people to 'bite'... I was just trying to get some help with a watch I really want to keep but that I'm struggling to use.

My main use for the chronograph is helping with my son's athletics training which takes place (you've probably guessed) between 5pm and 7pm, just when the hour hand (and for about 30 minutes the minute hand) are over the digital display!

Are you saying that your display is readable when the hands are over it, or that you don't use it enough during those times to be concerned about the problem?
 

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Check out the Hamilton Flight Timer. It's a fantastic ana-digi, and if you hold the crown down for a few seconds both hands jump to 8:45. You can keep the hands parked there as long as you want, then hold the crown down for a few seconds again and they return to the time. There are a few ana-digi's that offer ways to beat this issue, but the Hamilton does it best.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks. I wasn't aware of the Hamilton. Moving the hands seems so sensible that I don't know why the Aerospace doesn't do it. It also has far more skeletal hands which are cut out where the display is. Far more practical design... but just doesn't look as sexy as the Aerospace IMHO.

Also, I don't understand why, with two digital displays, there isn't an option to display the reading on either or both, which would completely overcome the problem... But I guess that would just be too logical!

I think I'll go into the dealer and have a look at a few more aerospaces to check for viewing angles of the display. When I look at mine from the left hand side the digital display is completely black, when I look from the right it is just dim. Is this normal? I'm wondering if the displays vary in their effectiveness.
 

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Check out the Hamilton Flight Timer. It's a fantastic ana-digi, and if you hold the crown down for a few seconds both hands jump to 8:45. You can keep the hands parked there as long as you want, then hold the crown down for a few seconds again and they return to the time. There are a few ana-digi's that offer ways to beat this issue, but the Hamilton does it best.
I'm pretty sure that the Cockpit B-50 has a similar feature.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm pretty sure that the Cockpit B-50 has a similar feature.
Now you've done it!! I've just looked into the B50 and I could really be tempted by it.

The functionality is much more practical in that it can park the hands and the backlight is much stronger to make the display more visible anyway. The re-chargeable battery with battery status meter seems nice as well (at least it would reduce the number of returns to Breitling for battery changes and I wouldn't feel that I had to limit use of the backlight to conserve battery power). I really like the idea of having a physical seconds hand as well.

There are a few things that are making me hesitate though:
1- The watch is much more bulky than the Aerospace. Not a deal killer for me, but certainly not a positive thing
2- I really like the single crown operation of the Aerospace and haven't had any problems doing the quick and slow turns that others seem to have stuggled with. IMHO the Aerospace operation is a superb exercise in simplicity and the B50 loses this a bit.
3- What is going on with the aesthetics of the dial... they've cut off half of the illume number 10 with the digital display. I think that would really annoy me at night.
4- Do I really want to spend an extra £2k on a quartz watch which in my view is less elegant in design that the aerospace that I already have?

Maybe I just have to accept that if I want to use the chronograph on my Aerospace between 5 and 7 o'clock or between 25 and 35 minutes past the hour I have to move the hands out of the way manually by re-setting the time. It's a real shame and I hope Breitling's next iteration of the Aerospace uses some of the functionality of the B50 (chargeable battery, brighter backlight, two quick presses of the crown to park the hands).
 

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I just tried using the chrono on mine, 6:50 so partially obscured, and you can kinda see under the hands and make out the digits, but to be honest its not an ideal situation. I would probably use the bezel to time things anyway, and if I needed percise measurements I would use a stop watch. I bought the Evo for more than its stop watch, so it doesn't bother me. just my .02
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The severity of the problem depends on the lighting conditions. Under an overcast sky or a shop with multiple ceiling lights the display is more readable than under a single house light or in light coming from a single source like a window or direct sunshine. A more uniform light source with light coming from a wider range of directions allows you greater viewing angles on the display and doesn't cast such a distinct shadow on the display from the hands.

In darkness, just using the backlight, the display is probably the most readable, allowing quite large viewing angles to 'peek' under the hands.

It shouldn't really be something that is an issue on a £3000 quartz watch, particularly one that has had many generations of development to get right and which is billed as a performance tool for professionals.... but it is. Do pilots not fly between the hours of 5 and 7? :)
 

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It's not a professional tool for anything. It's a really nicely made piece of jewelry with some fun digital doodads, and I love mine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I would agree wholeheartedly. It is a beautiful watch, but its purpose is misrepresented by Breitling. It's also a quartz so the issues with the display should be very simple to resolve and make it even better. Just having the option to swap information from one display to the other would overcome the issue and be a case of fiddling with the electronic programming rather than re-designing the movement.

At least with the B50 Breitling are starting to show signs that they understand what electronic watches should do. They just need to keep the Aerospace ethos of simplicity as well.

Thanks for everyone's help. It seems from the comments that my Evo is working as designed, but the design is a little 'flawed'. Just need to decide if I can live with it because the watch is so beautiful as a piece of jewellery or whether I go with the B50 with its extra bulk, extra cost and less minimalist operation.
 

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Agreed. I love mine,too.
Most of mine are Chronographs. Do I use them as such? No.
They are just a piece of jewelery on my wrist that are also a bit of well made machinery and happen to tell the time reasonably well. I look at my wrist and it puts a smile on my face. Knowing that it is a few cogs and a couple of springs is an aded bonus. Quite a big one actually.
The rest is trivial, for me at least.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
OK. Tried the B50 on today. Far too big for my wrist and just not as elegant as the Aerospace Evo imho.

Looks like I'll be sticking with the aerospace for a while and manually resetting the time to move the hands out of the way of the digital display when problems reading it occur.

Just waiting for Breitling to update it now :)
 

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Hi

I have been wearing an Aerospace E79362 and an Airwolf A78363 for many years, but never thought af that. The Airwolf got a "skeleton" minute hand, but does't help much.
 
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