A regular podcast about watches. Hosted by Fratello Magazine. During our podcast shows, we discuss watches, the watch industry, watch collecting, watches events and more. Make sure to subscribe!
A regular podcast about watches. Hosted by Fratello Magazine. During our podcast shows, we discuss watches, the watch industry, watch collecting, watches events and more. Make sure to subscribe!
Fratello On Air checks in with a new episode and Geneva Watch Days 2022 is the subject. Balazs and Mike discuss some of the key new releases. As always, expect banter and clear views on what's happening around us in the world of watches.
Geneva Watch Days 2022 is a wrap and Balazs was there. He gives his impressions on some of the most essential new releases while Mike weighs in. Naturally, there's talk about other watch news and equipment. Enjoy!
Before getting to the Handgelenks Kontrolle and our main topic, our hosts have a few items worth mentioning. Mike brings up a seriously lightweight and packing-friendly rain "shirt" from Patagonia called the "Houdini Jacket." It's available for men and women. Next is the Manfrotto Befree GT XPRO tripod, which has a nifty horizontal guide rail that should allow for great macro work. Finally, Balazs has stumbled upon the Baseus Magnetic Wireless Power Bank and vouches for its convenience. As far as the Handgelenks Kontrolle, Balazs is wearing his '50s Omega 2505 with a caliber 256. Mike is sporting his Citizen Homer HO150401 with glossy black dial and lumed indices.
Geneva Watch Days 2022
Balazs was on the ground during Geneva Watch Days 2022 while Mike watched from afar. We discuss the big release that wasn't actually part of the show, the Tudor Pelagos 39. Then, it's onto the Doxa Army, the new Bvlgari Octo Finissimo novelties, and the Oris Divers Sixty-Five with 12-hour bezel. We finish with thoughts on the newly announced pricing for the Speedmaster Professional.
As always, we hope you enjoyed the episode. If you have any topics you'd like us to discuss in a future episode, please let us know!
Sep 06 2022
Welcome to another episode of Fratello On Air! This week, Balazs and Mike rant a touch after talking about a number of topics and before finishing with Geneva Watch Days. We were feeling a bit feisty on this one, so forgive us…or don’t!
Who doesn’t love a good rant every so often? As much as we try to keep things on a relatively positive note, every so often something raises our collective eyebrows. Today is that day! Still, there are plenty of other topics to discuss.
Balazs is busy packing for his evening drive to Geneva Watch Days and informs us about the watches that will make the journey. On his wrist, though, is his prized Speedmaster 145-022“Transitional.” Mike is still living in his vintage higher-end Seiko world. He’s wearing a King Seiko 44-9990 from 1966 in support of an upcoming article on this classic.
A rant or two
We discuss a true-crime podcast called “The Yellow Car.” Then we shift to a documentary on the once-popular basketball brand, And1.” We recall the “Starbury” shoes that were supposed to revolutionize the shoe world…but didn’t. Mike also brings up the Mickey Mantle baseball card that recently sold for $12.6 Million…a sign that big spenders aren’t going anywhere anytime soon for top-grade collectibles. Balazs mentions an upcoming Michael Jordan-themed auction where a game-worn jersey is estimated to sell for around $5 Million.
The rant begins when we get to watches. We discuss a recent video made by a watch personality that is aimed toward Breitling and question the intent. Then, it’s on to a W.M.T. watch with a bent case that’s a replica of a battle-worn piece that took a bullet. Neither of us is impressed with the commercial venture. Finally, we talk about Geneva Watch Days and what we might see.
We hope you enjoyed this episode. As always, if you have ideas for the show, let us know and we’ll be happy to consider them for a future episode.
Aug 30 2022
Welcome to another episode of Fratello On Air where Balazs and Mike return to talk watches and other semi-adjacent topics. Vintage Grand Seiko is in play towards the end, but there's plenty of other banter to consume as we near the end of summer.
Balazs and Mike are together again! Balazs just landed in Stansted and Mike returned from a weekend in Colmar, but they have united on the airwaves. In this episode, you'll hear about space-related TV, old trucks in Slovakia, straps, and, of course, watches. Vintage Grand Seiko comes into play when it comes to watches on Mike's radar. Balazs brings up some King Seiko models.
Mike kicks things off with a truly brand-new (it arrived today) Sinn EZM 1.1 S and he's overjoyed with how well it fits despite its size. He offers a tip on some truly inexpensive but enjoyable straps from Fullmosa on Amazon. Balazs counters with his two-tone Rolex Datejust 16013. He ponders whether this watch would look good on a strap versus its stock Jubilee.
Vintage Grand Seiko
Before getting to vintage Grand Seiko, there are plenty of topics to discuss. We mention For All Mankind, a gripping TV show that's currently receiving great reviews. Then, we discuss old trucks from before the fall of the Berlin Wall. The Casio WV-59 Wave Ceptor from Better Call Saul has arrived, so expect a fun review soon! Gregoriades.com has some great-looking FKM Tropic-style straps with "Rally" holes and quick-release spring bars. Then, we come to Grand Seiko and we discuss the 44GS, the 4520-7000, and the SBGW235. We pivot slightly to some beautiful King Seiko models as well and end with custom display backs.
As always, we hope you enjoyed this episode. Feel free to let us know if there's anything you'd like us to cover in a future edition!
Aug 22 2022
Fratello On Air returns with an amusing look at Casio. That's right, it's not just about GShock this time! With these picks, get ready to measure temperature, barometer, and other fun data.
Yes, Casio is in focus with Balazs and Mike on the airwaves. In this episode, the duo talks about a couple of their favorite watches from the Shibuya-based brand. As mentioned, there's more to GShock when it comes to the digital powerhouse. The discussion triggers a walk down memory lane and we hope you have as much fun as our hosts.
Before heading into Casio, it's time for our one and only Handgelenks Kontrolle. Balazs leads off with the newly delivered King Seiko 45-7000. He's really enjoying the watch and its manual winding Hi-Beat movement. Mike is wearing his DOXA 300 SUB Black Lung. He feels it's still one of the best reissues and wore it on recent trips to England and Slovakia.
We turn our attention to Casio and give a brief history of the brand that makes a whole lot more than watches. Furthermore, we share some stories from childhood when it seemed that everyone was sporting some sort of digital watch. Then, it's time to name our favorites. We throw in a few surprise models along the way and in the end, but here are the main topics:
Thanks again for listening and, as always, feel free to let us know if there's a topic you'd like us to discuss.
Aug 16 2022
Welcome back to a long-overdue episode of Fratello On Air! Balazs and Mike have returned from lengthy travel and that forms the underlying agenda of today’s chat. There’s plenty more, though, so sit back and enjoy!
Yes, Balazs and Mike have been away for a couple of weeks. Balazs spent time in Japan after his vacation in Hungary. Mike flew the opposite direction and stayed in South Florida for some much-needed holiday. In this episode, travel sets the stage, but with watches as the primary focus.
After a brief chat, Balazs introduces the newly reborn Vulcain Cricket that is in with him for review. He has the larger-sized model and we even get to hear it! Mike stepped off a plane only hours earlier and is wearing the watch that accompanied him for two weeks in a row: the new Breitling SuperOcean 42.
Before discussing travel, we discuss the new Glashütte Original Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date models in “Vibing Orange” and “Disco Blue.” Neither of us are fans although we do enjoy G.O. Then, Balazs recaps his visit to Japan and some watch-related topics. Mike talks about South Florida and a particularly weak visit to Wempe at Frankfurt Airport prior to departure. Finally, we cap things off with a talk about recent watch thefts and whether it’s beginning to shape what we wear when we hit the road. (Hint: yes) Is it safe to wear a Rolex or a gold watch?
As always, if you have a topic that you’d like us to discuss, feel free to let us know. Thanks for listening!
Aug 08 2022
Fratello On Air is back with another winding episode where the Tudor Ranger and the idea of a field watch are in focus. Enjoy this flowing discussion while Balazs and Mike are sweating it out in Europe!
That's right, it's hot out there, but a little (or a lot of) heat can't keep Balazs and Mike away from the mic. Balazs is holding court at a castle in Chemnitz, Germany while Mike is roasting in Frankfurt. Both are looking forward to cooler days whenever or wherever. Before discussing the Tudor and what a field watch means to each, they take care of some wristy business and the news.
Mike kicks things off with his late model Rolex Explorer 1016, a nice example within the field watch genre. Balazs debuts his new Angelus Datalarm, a stainless model that joins his gold-plated version. For a bit of off-topic news, Mike discusses airline woes and his unfounded excitement over the upcoming Rimowa Pilot's case. Balazs has received a pair of new, discontinued leather Adidas Stan Smith's.
Tudor Ranger and the field watch
Next, we discuss the new Tudor Ranger. We like the watch but aren't wholly convinced. Perhaps, seeing will result in believing. The Ranger sparks a conversation about the field watch category in general. What is it and why do people like them so much? Are we all adventurers at heart or do we simply crave a basic and capable watch with good legibility? We cover a lot of different watches in the genre such as the Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical, the Nivada Super Antarctic, and even a GShock!
As always, thank you for listening. Feel free to let us know if there are any topics you'd like us to cover in a future episode.
Jul 19 2022
Fratello On Air comes back with another brand-focused episode and this time, it's Oris! The independent watch company from Hölstein is in play and, as always, we've picked some unique models. Settle in and enjoy!
There's no doubt that Oris is a Fratello favorite. From the "FratellOris" to the Sixty-Five, we're fully locked into this fan-friendly brand. Most of us, though, know the company from the last decade or so. Are there some interesting gems from the past? Of course, there are!
Traditional calls and that means that after some healthy banter, it's time for the Handgelenks Kontrolle. Mike kicks things off with his newly received Grand Seiko 6245-9000 (look forward to an upcoming review) and raves about its details. This also kicks off a broader discussion about King and Grand Seiko. Balazs pulls out a newly serviced black-dialed Angelus 210 chronograph. What a stunner!
When it comes to Oris, there's no doubt that the current models are winners. Did you know that there are some truly interesting older models? We take a look at a few of them!
We hope you enjoyed this look at some unique Oris watches! As always, feel free to contact us if there's a topic you'd like us to discuss.
Jul 12 2022
Fratello On Air returns with a talkative episode. Balazs and Mike cover a lot of ground. Some of it is watch-related while some of it is not! We discuss the recent cranky comments on our site and ultimately spend a few minutes on our "grab and go" Summer favorites. There's a bit of Citizen headed your way. Enjoy this meandering episode.
Yes, Summer is in full swing and Balazs is sweating it out in Hungary. Mike is staying relatively cool in Germany. Our readers, however, seem a bit hot and bothered! Maybe some inexpensive Citizen dive watches will help assuage sore feelings.
When it comes to the handgelenks kontrolle, Balazs is wearing his tried and true MoonSwatch Mars! This one is super lightweight, which helps beat the heat. Mike has also gone with a bantamweight in the Breitling SuperOcean 57. However, he has taken it off of the mesh for the first time and put on an inexpensive green canvas strap. Comfy!
Loads of other topics including Citizen
We hit on loads of topics today. Adidas Stan Smith shoes, Oakley sunglasses, and Swatch watches and sunglasses are just some of the fun. Then we talk about a recent Strap Check article where Mike paired his Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight 925 with the Forstner Model J. Our readers weren't fans! Then, we discuss the polarizing new Breitling SuperOcean and third-party movements in general. The Serica 5303 also comes up and Mike is interested! Finally, we discuss some of our favorite easy Summer watches. Balazs mentioned the new Citizen JP2007-17W Aqualand with an all-lume dial. Mike mentions his Promaster Tough "Ray Mears" and BN0220 diver. Enjoy!
Jul 05 2022
Rikki and David from Scottish Watches sit down with Rob for the first of two crossover episodes a la Murder, She Wrote, and Magnum P.I. (but with fewer murders and Rolex GMT-Masters).
Follow me on Instagram @robnudds
Jun 29 2022
Fratello On Air returns with a focused episode on one of our favorite watches, the Rolex Day-Date. Mike and RJ are here with some serious heft on the wrist. You'll hear about their love for these decadent, yet classic pieces.
We really think that you're going to enjoy today's episode on the Rolex Day-Date. This edition features two watch fans in an unscripted discussion about the flagship of the world's most famous watch brand. The watches are different, but the admiration is similar. A word of warning, though, have the pause ready after the opening salvo to regain your composure!
Handgelenks Kontrolle with the Rolex Day-Date
It's no surprise that the Hangelenks Kontrolle sets the stage for the main topic. RJ is wearing his new-to-him 18238 in yellow gold with an equally champagne dial. Mike, goes with a watch from a different era and in a different hue. He's sporting his "new" white gold 1803 with a black dial. Yes, this is the watch that suffered an agonizing shipping delay! Both talk about what makes this watch special along with their memories of seeing it on the wrists of others or on TV. Enjoy the ride!
Jun 28 2022
Fratello On Air is here with an episode covering several topics. In the end, you'll want to stick around because Balazs meets his "shoe idol," who is none other than Stan Smith. Not the shoe, mind you, but the tennis player with an incredibly famous shoe. Of course, we talk about watches as well...
That's right, Balazs has finally met Stan Smith and talks to him about several things including "the shoe." We also discuss travel and how good it is to get out again. There's also the topic of finding a MoonSwatch randomly and going hands-on with a new retro Certina dive chronograph.
Mike is in Atlanta during this episode and it's a Sunday. He's heading back to Germany in about 6 hours. What to do? Well, he's wearing his Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight 925 on the Forstner Model J (and his Stan Smith sneakers). Plus, he has just returned from Waffle House! Balazs is in Germany and he's wearing the new "Mission to Mars" MoonSwatch that he unexpectedly found at the Swatch HQ in Biel!
Certina and the Stan Smith interview
We talk about travel and that includes Balazs and his adventures in Switzerland. As mentioned, Mike traveled to Atlanta and enjoyed wearing his Tudor as an "only watch." We discuss the new Certina DS Chronograph Automatic 1968 that he has in for review. After that, it's time for the Stan Smith interview that Balazs held in person while he was in Switzerland. Stan stopped in on his way to where else but the French Open! Enjoy it!
As always, thanks for listening to Fratello On Air. Don't hesitate to let us know if you have any additional subjects you'd like us to cover in a future episode.
Jun 21 2022
Fratello On Air is here and we’re excited to discuss the recent Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute release and provide an interview with Fred Mandelbaum. Balazs and Mike are on the mics again talking travel. Tune in and listen to their latest experiences.
That’s right, Breitling came with a new Navitimer Cosmonaute in the form of a limited edition model. It’s an interesting watch with an interesting build-up to its introduction. The introduction actually took place in Europe and there were some surprises. Enjoy the ride!
Before hitting the new Navitimer Cosmonaute, Balazs and Mike do the usual with the Handgelenks Kontrolle. Balazs is wearing his beloved Eterna 852 and even shares a story related to the watch with his recent travels to Switzerland. Then, Mike brings out something he hasn’t worn in quite a while — the IWC Aquatimer 3536.
The Breitling Navitimer Cosmonaute
Mike had the opportunity to spend a couple of nights in Zurich for a Breitling event which included the release of the new Navitimer Cosmonaute. Next, we discuss the watch, its story, and a fantastic collectors dinner that loads of friends attended. Listen hard and you’ll even hear something from our friend Eric Wind — this sound byte will live on in eternity! Finally, enjoy a chat with Fred Mandelbaum where he shares some history about the original Cosmonaute.
As always, thanks for listening, and feel free to let us know if there’s anything you’d like us to discuss in future episodes.
Jun 14 2022
We’re back with another episode of Fratello On Air. This time, Balazs and Mike discuss Longines. This is an episode where we cover some of our favorite models and play an interview that RJ had with Giuseppe Maccio, the head of product at Longines. Enjoy it!
It’s been a couple of weeks since Balazs and Mike have come together due to travel and life in general. Here they are, though, talking about one of the most iconic brands in history: Longines.
Before coming to Longines, it’s time to hit the Handgelenks Kontrolle. Mike goes first with the Tudor Black Bay Fifty-Eight 925 and brings a twist. He has chosen to add the Forstner Model J and the results are positive. Balazs shares his Angelus 215 that has been on a weeklong trip to Switzerland. Good for him for wearing this classic on the road!
We then move onto some news which is actually specific to Longines. The new Ultra-Chron debuted as a 43mm diver with a 36,000vph automatic movement. This is an impressive watch and we like the brand’s direction. Then, we move onto the main topic and begin to name our favorite pieces. We discuss the:
• Admiral, an interesting early ‘70s collection that reminds us of the Omega Dynamic
• The Big Indian ref 6111 – an amazing ‘50s military piece that weighs in at a daunting 44mm
We then cut to the interview between RJ and Giuseppe. Then, it’s back to a couple more of our favorites.
• The Nonius Chronograph with the Valjoux 72
• Finally, the Weems watches with their innovative bezels used for flight navigation
We hope you enjoyed this episode on Longines. Thanks for listening and if you have ideas for future shows, feel free to let us know!
Jun 07 2022
Fratello On Air is back with another brand-focused episode. This time, Balazs and Mike focus on Bulova. Finding six favorites from this legendary brand was a real task, but we've pulled out some winners. We hope you enjoy it!
Bulova, the brand founded in New York in 1875, is on the hot seat. We do our best to find six attractive models to help paint a picture of how varied this brand was during its heyday and even after the quartz crisis. Expect the unexpected — especially when it comes to Balazs' picks!
Before getting to Bulova, we take care of our Handgelenks Kontrolle. Balazs kicks things off with a new arrival, his "NOS" vintage Excelsior Park EP 4 chronograph. Congrats on the arrival of this long-awaited stunner! Mike is doing his best Balazs impression with the late '40s, early '50s Siduna Commander. This is a Danish brand, but a Swiss watch with a 36.5mm "waterproof" stainless steel case and an ETA 1110.
For the main part of our show, we discuss six of our favorite models from Bulova. Before doing so, though, we give a little bit of history and bring in some stories about how we were personally impacted by this brand. Then, it's time to hit the watches. We discuss the following:
We hope you enjoyed today's show! As always, if there's anything you'd like to discuss, feel free to let us know.
May 24 2022
Get ready for a winding episode for this week's Fratello On Air! Balazs and Mike return after a one-week hiatus with news from the road. Enjoy this open discussion!
Mike has been on the road for much of the last month and Balazs is gearing up to leave. Movement around the globe forms part of today's episode along with a couple of news bits. As always, though, it's time to start with a Handgelenks Kontrolle.
Balazs is sporting the new Nivada Datomaster Mecaquartz and we discuss this affordable entry. We also muse about how this watch looks like the Nivada Dato 4368 that Tomas reviewed for #TBT. Mike has pulled out his Omega Speedmaster Professional "TinTin" and decided to put it on the original bracelet for the first time in years. We're not sure how long that will last!
Travel and the news
We spend some time talking about the news. Specifically, we mention the new IWC Pilot's Watch for the Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula One Team. That sparks a conversation about racing in general. Then, we discuss shipping woes including lost and stolen packages. Regarding travel, we talk about some of the most common watches we see while moving through airports. Mike brings up the enduring Rolex GMT-Master II reference 16710 and 15 to 20-year-old Speedies. Balazs talks about Breitling. Finally, Mike mentions a quick coffee with Jason Heaton in Minneapolis and the Vertex AquaLion he was wearing.
As always, we thank you for listening! We're ready to discuss another brand, so if you have any suggestions, please feel free to let us know!
May 17 2022
Fratello On Air returns with an episode where both hosts are finally in the same room. It took two years, but the dynamic duo are together again. Face to face - reunited and it feels so good!
That’s right, Balazs and Mike are finally sitting in the same room, recording a podcast, and checking out watches. It’s a fun show with a couple reader questions and a look at a handful of watches from each host’s collection. Enjoy a candid discussion between two friends who haven’t seen each other in awhile.
Before moving on to the main topic, the two discuss the recent DOXA ArmyDOXA Army release. They both offer their thoughts on this limited edition, sold out timepiece. Then, for the Handgelenks Kontrolle, Balazs discusses his prized Omega 27CHRO 12. Mike has decided on his Rolex Submariner 5513 MaxiRolex Submariner 5513 Maxi dial.
Face To Face
Once the formalities, are over, we decide to answer a couple reader questions. The first question relates to making a watch with a large lug to lug wear smaller. Next, we address a question about strap colors for watches with either black or white/silver dials. Then, we move on to looking at some key watches in the collection. Some of the watches we discuss are:
We hope you enjoy this one! As always, feel free to send your questions. Thanks for listening!
May 03 2022
Fratello On Air is here and we finally get around to answering a reader's question about vintage chronograph movements. Are there differences? Which do we like best? We attempt to answer some of these questions in a chatty, non-technical way. We hope you enjoy it!
Balazs and Mike love a good reader question and after over a month of travel and tackling different subjects, it was time to respond. Our reader sent us a question about vintage chronograph movements. Which do we like, are there differences, and should some be avoided? Well, we aren't watchmakers, so the technical discussion is light. Still, little differences find their way into the conversation along with some of our favorite watches that use these movements.
Before moving on to the main topic of vintage chronograph movements, it's time for a Handgelenks Kontrolle. Balazs has come correct with his newly acquired Omega Speedmaster Professional 145.012-67 with a 321 caliber movement. Mike also enters the game with his Excelsior Park "Tuxedo Dial" with an EP4 movement.
The chronograph movements
For our main topic, we have decided not to boil the ocean. We simply could not discuss every vintage chronograph, so we chose our four favorite manual-wind movements with column wheels. As we mentioned, we aren't watchmakers, so technical intricacies are left for others. However, our research did point out that all four movements were stellar and that personal preference likely towers over true technical prowess. We discuss:
As always, thanks for listening! Please feel free to let us know if you have any other show ideas.
Apr 26 2022
Fratello On Air returns after a one-week hiatus with Part Two of the new watch rundown. Balazs and Mike continue to roll through some of the more notable releases from the past month or so.
Who doesn't like a new watch? Well, if you're like us, the season's introductions mark an exciting period. Therefore, it was notable enough o mark the occasion with two episodes. Make sure to catch the first one if you haven't already!
After a bit of chit-chat about travel, fitness, and normal life, the duo moves into the Handgelenks Kontrolle. Balazs is sporting a brand new watch with the Nivada Grenchen Datomaster Mecaquartz. Mike has received his MoonSwatch Mission to the Moon and the two discuss the fun around these watches.
New Watch Rundown Part Two
Then, we move onto the main part of the show and that's more from the new watch parade that has occurred over the last month. We discuss new pieces from:
As always, thanks for tuning in, and stay tuned for more from Fratello On Air!
Apr 19 2022
It's time for another episode of Fratello On Air and, wow, do we have news! In fact, we have so much news that our New Watch Rundown will consist of two episodes. Enjoy the first one!
'Tis the season for all the debuts. Balazs and Mike are here with a new watch rundown! It's not just Watches & Wonders 2022 here, though, because plenty of brands have come to the table.
As always, the duo kick things off with a bit of banter about Balazs's trip to Miami with Maurice Lacroix and then move on to the Handgelenks Kontrolle. Mike is wearing his fresh-off-the-delivery-truck Aquastar Deepstar Mid-Size chronograph. Stay tuned for a hands-on review! Balazs takes a trip to Saturn, not the german electronics store, with his new MoonSwatch! The two spend some time talking about the mania around these watches and some personal experiences near the Swatch boutiques.
New watch rundown, part 1
Next, we hit a number of new watch brands and discuss our thoughts on their newest pieces. In this episode, you'll find:
As always, thank you for listening, and be sure to check us out every week!
Apr 05 2022
Fratello On Air is here with Balazs and Mike. This week, Zenith is in focus as the duo roll through their favorite models out of Le Locle. You'll be surprised with this list because the El Primero doesn't factor so heavily.
Zenith dates way back to 1865 with its founding in Le Locle, Switzerland. While we won't go back that far at all, we will look backward at some of our favorite models. Of course, Zenith makes some fantastic new models (ooh, we love that Chonomaster Original!), but bring two vintage nerds together and vintage is what you get!
As always, Balazs and Mike kick off with a Handgelenks Kontrolle. Balazs is sporting his Casio G-Shock GW-B5600 with Bluetooth. Mike is wearing his vintage Technos Sky Diver on a bracelet.
As mentioned, there's more to Zenith than just the El Primero and there are some proper surprises here. In fact, there are watches that one of our hosts had seen for the very first time. We discuss:
As always, thanks for tuning in and we look forward to "chatting" with you next week!
Mar 29 2022