Bell and Ross BR 03-94

You may remember that earlier in the year, I reviewed Omega’s Speedmaster Chronoscope. Well, of course, you remember being a follower of WristReview (and if not, why not?). I remember that you lot were pretty mixed about the Chronoscope in the comments, but a familiar theme was that you weren’t sure if it was legible. I tried to get across that it sort of was, but maybe I need to work on that. So, given that you readers seem to like watches you can actually read, I wonder what you’ll make of Bell & Ross’ new watch, the Bell and Ross BR 03-94 Multimeter.
Just like the Chronoscope, the Multimeter can measure different things on its chronograph. It’ll measure your beat rate with a pulsometer, your rate of breathing with an asthmometer, and it’ll measure speed in three different ways. The three tachymeters are calibrated for different things. Tachymeter 1 is for cars over a long distance, while two and three are for people, either on a bike or running. The idea is that you can therefore use this to time more likely scenarios than with the standard tachymeter on, say, a Speedmaster. I hope the colours make it a little easier to see because the subdials seem hard to read, and I have no idea why there’s a date window at all. Perhaps if the diameter were enough, it wouldn’t be so bad.
In the midst of the Watches & Wonders madness, Bell & Ross launched a new limited edition BR 03-94 with one of the hottest dials of the year, ready to measure anything you dare throw at it. It’s called the Multimeter, and it features 5 separate scales in 5 different colors, including three different tachymeters. This is the analog activity tracking we’ve been waiting for, and it’s all brought together in graphic style with the ‘circle in a square’ ethos of the Bell & Ross instrument panel design language. Most importantly, the colors gel beautifully for maximum impact, making the vibe work regardless of the practicality of the scales.
The Multimeter features 5 distinct zones that each get their own measurement scale, dominating nearly the entirety of the dial in the process. Yes, there’s still a chronograph hidden in there. As is a date window. Each color gets its own function as follows: a pulsometer scale in orange for measuring heart rate; an asthmometric scale in green monitors monitors breaths in expirations per minute; a tachymeter in light gray based in 1 km for the pilot; a tachymeter in neon green based in 250m for the cyclist; and finally, a tachymeter in pale green based in 100m for the runner. If all you need is a reading on the time, well, the rehaut indexes the minutes. There’s an hour hand there, but you’ll just have to best-guess it.
A blocked off section along the left side of the dial breaks down each of the scales in case you’ve forgotten, but it may prove tricky to understand at a glance and on the go. No matter, lay out your.. it looks the absolute business, and in theory, uses the principle of color differentiation for harmonious presentation of information.Is it practical? Probably not for most of us, but it sure as hell scratches an itch when it comes to playful utilitarian design with loads of color applied to dramatic effect. A date window has been applied in pretty much the only area that could possibly accept it, just right of the (missing) 12 o’clock marker. The running seconds hand and minute totalizer are forced to make do with half of their scales in place as well. It’s ridiculous, and I kind of love it.

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