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[Review] Panerai PAM111I

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Just sharing with our RWG brothers what I posted over at RG. Just a follow-up to this thread of the 111 then & now which showed pictures of my 111E and 111I, I thought I'd just throw together this quick comparison of my 111I versus gens. Oh and apologies on some of the pics, still trying to master shooting against dark backgrounds.

Essentially yes, its a Little Hero watch, his latest "L" version ones. Its close, very close to gen, and a real dream to wear, here are the pics and comparisons and as with all my reviews, just follow the numbers;

Front

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1. P&A in PANERAI are a smidgen too close, we're talking 0.25mm too close sorta distance. A wee tell, but one nonetheless

2. the O is slightly wider and more squashed in the LH LUMINOR

No other tells on the dial I can see. Indices color is bang on to be honest, as is the off white printed text (gen is another series). CG is correct shape with sharp cutouts and the crown is nice and thick with right amount of teeth and bevel.

Only other tell from front on that is not illustrated is the AR on the crystal. It is horribly strong and blue. The gens have almost no color to the AR tint and its truly amazing. This is the first and only mod this watch is going for, a recoating of the AR. Check out Frogman's review of his LH 111 after the AR was recoated. Stunning

*Update* Text

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Was asked by If you see Kay regarding the "L SWISS MADE L" text. From a distance, they look accurate. But when you come in a little closer, the LH one though at the correct distance from the 6, is mildly longer in the text than the gen. To me, very mild tell cause quite honestly, I've never noticed it till I blew up these two pics. The font and fineness of the print is pretty good as well which makes this a pretty hard tell. But a tell is a tell ;)

Side - Crown Guard

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Can't spot any issues. Great thickness, correct slope, even the CG pin is polished too.

Side - Profile

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1. May be anlgle of the shots, but the base appears marginally thicker on the LH 111. Angle of the bezel though looks accurate. My 111E has a shallower angle which is incorrect

2. Profile of the lugs is incorrect. The base should a bit thicker with more of a taper.

Back - Movement

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This is where the disappointments begin.

1. The Cotes De Geneve engraving is the biggest tell now. The gen is amazingly fine engraving, whereas the rep, has obvious ridges. Another view of a gen's engraving;

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2. The amount of beveled edge on the sunburst wheels are a tad too thick, about 0.5mm too thick

3. The caseback is brushed rather than polished on the LH 111

Lume

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LH 111I on right, Vacc 111E on left. 1s exposure, 2mins between shots

Stunning lume no matter how you look at it.

For $1200, this watch is not cheap. When Little Hero has his $800 specials, its a little less painful a bite, and quite honestly, I believe its only worth $800 even with all his mods. That said, its a stunning watch. Its got a gen feel to it. Completely. Nice heft, wears well, hardly any tells. Even the movement is stunning, though any Risti will know its a rep movement.

Another thing to add is the little details that go to make this watch just that little bit more gen-life. The lever is very tight when unlocking and when locking back makes the satisfy "click" you get with the gens (I've handled a fair few). It is mildly looser as compared to the gens, but not the "I'm going everywhere" sorta loose either. Add to that is the caseset, its thicker than the normal cartel casesets all over. From thickness, to caseback thickness, lugs etc. Adds to the heft of the watch. Another thing is the crystal height above the bezel, very close to the gens again. Its these small things that just add to the complete aura of this watch. For 20% of the gen price, some might claim its too expensive. I agree its a lot of coin, but that 80% is money in my pocket to do with as I like and rock my life with a watch that's 95% close.

For the closest/best PAM, Little Hero is the only way to go. You still have to look for an aftermarket AR service though, the AR is just too damn strong for me.

Edited by unregistered

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Excellent review! :thumbsupsmileyanim: Thanks! Very insightful!

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Great pics, very useful review. Thanks for the time you took to do it.

One question though - who is Little Hero? ( I looked up under members but he doesnt have any posts or profile )

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He's a member at RG

Thanks :)

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Great review. Thanks for taking the time to put that together. Made me take off my 111h and check out a few things mid way through.

Cheers! :drinks:

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Wonderful review. Thanks for taking the time to write this up. The watch is a beauty even after you pointed out it's flaws

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