The chance to experience the latest 3 day Radiomir from Panerai was too hard to pass up. But how did it hold up, especially comparing it to the 8 Giorni I road-tested a month or so ago?
What We Love
- Vintage styled design aesthetic
- Slim case profile sits flush to the wrist
- Textured dial and aged lumed numerals
What We Don’t
- Thick strap is a little chunky
- No see through caseback
- 3 Day Manual Winding
Overall Rating: 8.875/10
- Value for money: 9/10
- Wearability: 9/10
- Design: 8.5/10
- Build quality: 9/10
Back in June, I was able to experience the new Panerai Radiomir 8 Giorni that the brand released for Watches and Wonders this year. I was immediately drawn to the distressed look of the eSteel and the blue smoked and textured dial. Check out my review of it here for the full details. So when the opportunity came up to wear the Tre Giorni (three day) version for a couple of weeks, and be able to compare directly to the 8 Days variant, I jumped at the chance. And what better place to photograph a watch with nautical and Navy roots than down by the bay and marina!
Now, the differences between the Tre Giorni and the Otto Giorni are not huge, and other than the movement’s power reserve, it’s basically aesthetics. But then the look of a watch is a major factor when it comes to what you choose. It either looks good and resonates with you, or it doesn’t.
The first impression of the Tre Giorni is that whilst it’s a similar watch, it’s also a very different watch in the way it looks and feels on the wrist. The two biggest aspects were the satin steel case and the clean dial in the fumé grey colour. I’ve tried to do it justice with the photo’s, but it’s something you need to see in person, especially the case.
Just like the 8 Day version, the Radiomir Tre Giorni is based on the Radiomir prototype from 1935, albeit a smaller case size of 45mm compared to the 1935 version, which was 47mm. The case is made from what Panerai call Patina Steel. The best way I can describe it is not quite polished, not quite brushed, but somewhere in between. It’s almost a very smooth satin finish with a slight touch off matte to it.
This gives the cushion case a very unique look that does stand out. It reflects the light in a unique way, and due to the way the surface is finished, it’s a little goldilocks for me – not too bright, not too dark, just right. The added benefit to this is that unlike high polish, it doesn’t show marks from finger prints or water marks, and keeps it’s lustre in a way that brushed steel doesn’t.
Keeping with the theme of vintage, Panerai have given the Tre Giorni a tan/brown/grey shaded dial, that is dark at the edges and light in the middle. Now Panerai officially says this is a grey dial, but depending on the light, it can change and look more light brown or tan in certain conditions. This is potentially helped by the dirty dial lume on this version, which is designed to look aged. It’s a combination that just works. And if you missed my last hands on review with the Otto Giorni, then the dials on these Radiomirs have been designed as an ode to the old Radiomir dials that were made of aluminium and as they aged and anodised, they changed colours and appearance.
The dial has been kept very clean too. There are no date windows, logo’s or small seconds hand sub-dial on this one. Just the Radiomir Panerai at the top and the 12, 3, 6 and 9 numerals and indices on the sandwich dial. To me, this keeps with the vintage styling, and whilst I am a date guy when it comes to watches, I can easily overlook it on this piece as I feel it would detract from the overall look.
The other nice touch is the blue fired hands. On the blue dial variant of the same watch, or on the blue Otto Giorni, the hands do blend in a little, but are still easy to read due to them reflecting the light and the lume on the inside. However on the Tre Giorni, these pop as they directly contrast to the grey dial. In the sunlight and at the right angle, these come alive and give the watch just another dimension to it’s look and feel.
As with the typical Radiomir design, the Tre Giorni has the wire lugs that hold the vintage styled leather strap on. As Panerai’s are strap monsters, you can swap and change them out easily, and as such, the same watch may come on a different strap depending on what Panerai have decided to put on that particular piece. In this case, the specific example had a dark brown vintage styled leather strap with cream stitching. It looked the part honestly and just added to the overall look of the piece.
How It Wears
As mentioned in the 8 Day review, these Radiomir’s wear extremely well. Whilst the case is large at 45mm, these wear much smaller due to the cushion shape and curved edges, plus a lot of the thickness (around 3mm) is actually in the domed crystal and sloped bezel. This gives the impression of a thinner watch as the eye is drawn to the case, which sits perfectly flat on the wrist. Overall, it’s just 14mm thick, which compared to other watches out there today isn’t huge, but the case only measures 11mm, and this is what you really look at with the Radiomir.
To put this into context, I compared in my hand the Radiomir with my Luminor Marina 312 at 44mm. The Radiomir looked visibly smaller in comparison, again, mostly due to the design of the case and crystal. The Luminor is chunky with a much thicker case and the crystal whilst domed is set into the case and bezel meaning it wears larger than the specs suggest, and the Radiomir smaller.
The leather strap was comfortable as well. Whilst it was probably a little thick for my liking, this is a personal preference. I feel I would prefer the same style of strap that was on the Otto Giorni, the thinner and softer calf skin, but in the dark tan colour to match the styling. Whilst it doesn’t affect the overall wearability of the watch, the thickness around the wire lugs did bug me slightly as it did give the impression of being a little bulky when compared to the 8 Day variant on it’s strap. However, it was sturdy and robust, which is what you want.
Outside of this, the watch does wear very well and thin enough to slide under a cuff. I did wear this to a couple of functions with long sleeves and jackets on, and it was completely fine in these situations. Whilst the look may not have looked right from a pure fashion stand point, it was fine for me as lets face it, it’s nice to go against the norm and wear something you enjoy.
Inside the Panerai Radiomir Tre Giorni is the hand-wound mechanical, P.6000 calibre. As the name suggests, its a 3 day power reserve from the single barrel movement. At only 4.5mm thick, this is one aspect that contributes to the thinner case design. Whilst I preferred the 8 day power reserve, simply from a convenience perspective only having to wind it once a week, the 3 Day reserve wasn’t too onerous. But you do have to remember it’s a manual wind, and not an automatic, which if you’re like me, takes a week or so to get used to winding it by hand rather than replying on the automatic movements I’m used to.
Whilst the Radiomir 8 Giorni has the see through case back, the Tre Giorni does not, concealing the movement. Instead it has the standard screw down back with the Officine Panerai logo on the back. This isn’t a deal breaker by any stretch as the manual wind movements in the Radiomirs are not designed for aesthetics rather than for functionality. Over the few weeks on my wrist, the movement kept good time, with little variation. We’re talking about a few seconds a day at most fast, which means you’ll at least be on time if not a little early when you compound this over a couple of months.
Having has the Blue Radiomir 8 Giorni, I wasn’t sure how I would feel wearing the slightly more plain Tre Giorni given the 8 Giorni has a lot going for it. But I have to say, I gravitated towards this more. The Radiomir Tre Giorni in this colour way seems more pure, more true to the vintage roots of the Radiomir in my opinion.
I found myself constantly looking at the dial and the texture in different light settings, and the overall feel of it just worked for my personal tastes. The domed crystal is a great tribute to the old plexiglass of the 30’s and 40’s and the cushion case makes such a difference on the wrist, especially on these due to the larger diameter, but less thickness when compared to a 44mm Luminor Marina.
I did feel a little sad giving this piece back as I did feel it was more a watch suited to my tastes than others I actually own. So much so that it was hard to put the Luminor back on again and whilst having the Radiomir, preferred this over the PAM312. The Patina steel was also a winner as you don’t see this style on many watches at all. It’s either brushed, polished or combination of both. This was something different and looked and felt good wearing.
The last thought I have on this is maybe sums up my experience with the Radiomir Tre Giorni. If I could put all the great elements of the Radiomir – the case thickness, Patina steel, domed crystal, the dial and hands into the shape of my Luminor 312, it would almost be the perfect casual watch. Classic Panerai look with a more aesthetically pleasing, easy wearing watch.
- Case: 45mm, 14mm thick (11mm case/3mm crystal) and 55mm lug to lug
- Case Material: Patina steel with a matte satin finish
- Dial: Grey gradient and textured grain dial with luminous Arabic numerals and hour markers.
- Crystal: Domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating
- Water Resistance: 100m (10BAR)
- Movement: Panerai Calibre P.6000 manual wind – featuring 19 jewels, Glucydur® balance, 21,600 vph / 3hz. Incabloc Parechoc® anti-shock device & one barrel. 110 components.
- Power Reserve: 3 Days
- Strap: Dark brown leather with cream stitching and distressed sides. Patina steel trapezoidal shaped pin buckle
Availability: Exclusively at Panerai Boutiques or online via panerai.com
Australian Recommended Retail Price: AUD $10,800