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Premium Member
19,341 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)

Reviewer: Don aka Tattoo Chef
Watch donated for review

Watch Being Reviewed: Aether Watches AE01 Anthracite Dial

Company Website:

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Contact: [email protected]


Drawing inspiration from the old world traditions of the Swiss, German, and American Masters, Aether Watch Co. applies our own aesthetic ideals and values to create truly luxurious timepieces. Coupling classic styling and the finest craftsmanship with bespoke detailing makes for a watch that is sure to stand the test of time.
With an eye to the future and a nod to the past, Aether Watches are designed in the USA and assembled in Pforzheim, Germany using the finest materials. Our custom straps are entirely handmade to exacting specifications by a true artisan here in Arizona, the ultimate finishing touch to make our watch yours.


Case width 42mm
10mm thick
51mm lug to lug
7.5 mm crown
22mm lug width
37mm dial opening
82 grams

Price: $1600

If you you order an AE-01, you get a choice of a custom strap from Stone Creek Straps.

Stock Photo:

First Impressions:
Understated Elegance. That was my first thought. Beautiful sunray dial, great wood presentation box, and a fantastic custom strap.


The presentation box of the AE-01 is handmade by the owner Brad at Aether Watches. He orders in the wood and then laser cuts it and assembles it, and then brands it with the Aether logo. Inside the lid is foam padding, as well as on the inside where the watch sits on its pillow. Great presentation box that doesnt take up alot of room, keeps it secure during shipping, and the fact that it is hand made and assembled just gives it that cool factor.

The dial is very simplistic, but in a good way. All metal applied indices and numbers, metal hands, and a 60 seconds counter down at the 6. The Aether name is done in white, which contrasts nicely with the grey dial. It is a super clean dial, no excess writing or branding, which allows you to really enjoy the dial itself. The anthracite grey dial is like a dark charcoal in certain light, and a greyish/silver in others. It is really an elegant dial, and one you would expect with this type of watch.

Case, Bezel and Crystal:
The case is all made and finished in Germany, and taking a look at how well it is finished, that is very apparent. The sides of the case are very finely satin, brushed, while just the fixed bezel and crown are high polished. I appreciate that, as I am not a fan of all high polished watches, but understand that for a dressier watch, you want a little extra touch. It creates a nice contrast and is not overdone. The lugs curve down nicely and allows it to sit comfortably on the wrist. My only gripe would be that the crown is unsigned, but I have been told that this was done on purpose as to not have the branding all over the watch, and continue with the less is more approach.

The crystal is an inner AR coated flat sapphire crystal. The crystal is very clear and allows you to see the dial at any time no matter the lighting.

Case back:
The AE-01 has an exhibition case back, showing off the ETA 6498 mechanical movement. The crystal used here is sapphire again and has the same internal AR coating as the front. The edge of the case back is all high polished as well, and deeply engraved with the branding, water resistance and crystal type. The movement has not been over branded or decorated, which for me is fine, because it is beautiful as is.

Leather Strap:
The leather straps are one of the great features of the Aether Watches. Aether watches partners with his wife Jeanna from Stone Creek Straps to deliver you a truly custom made strap. The picture directly below is the strap chosen from their website, which is a 22mm Burnt Umber. It is 4mm thick at widest point and tapers to 3mm towards the buckle. It is a dark brown color with just a slight natural distressing. It is extremely well made. There is no other way to describe it. This particular strap was done with no taper and regular thumbnail buckle with Aether logo and one large keeper.

But here is the best part. You don't have to choose the strap below. You can choose ANY strap from the Stone Creek Straps website. Leather, ammo, all the different exotic straps she offers, etc. You will get every option to choose as well. Your length, hole placement, keepers, taper or no taper, regular or deplyoant buckle. The choices are endless, and you can truly make this watch fit your personality with your choice of strap.

Wrist shot on my 7 1/2" wrist:

The 42mm case plays slightly larger on the wrist because of the large dial and slim bezel. In my personal opinion this is a great size for this type of watch.

The movement used is an ETA 6498 mechanical. I think many are familiar with this 17 jewel movement. It has a 46 hour power reserve and it winds beautifully. This movement was chosen because Aether watches wanted to keep the classic feel that they are striving for with their brand. It is also 36.6mm in diameter, so it fits perfect size wise in this case and dial.

Its been a pleasure to review this model from Aether Watches. They are of course an upstart company, and they are striving for a classic luxury watch brand, and I think so far they are on the right track.
Aether Watches have gone all in on bringing this company to light. They did not have a preorder, or a crowdfunding program as so many do these days. They have invested their time and money to be able to produce their vision.

The watch itself manufactured of Swiss and German components. It is very important to point out that they did not use any Asian parts to produce this watch. The dial and movement are Swiss made and the case is machined in Germany. Final assembly of the case is made in Germany as well. Then they are shipped to Arizona, where Aether Watches are located, to be fitted with your choice of strap and handmade wood presentation box.

The Aether AE-01 is wonderfully built and has all the right components with applied numerals and markers on a striking sunray dial, Swiss mechanical movement and high grade sapphire crystal. Combining that with handmade custom strap and handmade presentation box, it is easy to see why the price is as such. But beyond the price, it also shows you that Aether watches didn't just want to make a watch, but that they wanted to design something both classic and modern and also be as hands on as possible with it. If I were to change anything, I would personally like to see some kind of branding on the crown, just for that extra touch. But beyond that, I think they have done a great job with the AE-01.
I look forward to see where the future leads them.

The Aether AE-01 is also available with a black, brown and silver dial, and also a rose tone case.

Thank you for reading.
Please see the video review in the post below.


Long Time Member
3,018 Posts
Damn Don, one helluva review. Your pictures are the standard bearer for watch photography. I really like this watch and have always loved the 6497. I only hope that one day I can learn as much about watches as what you have forgotten.

Now hotties and women in general, well I charge for those lessons ;)

Seriously bro great review!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

2,393 Posts
Very nice, Clean,classic look. I love it I just wish like many other watches I like they were made a little larger, like 45mm and up.
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Premium Member
19,341 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Updated leather strap photos and wrist shots, as the others I was just not happy with. New photos are much clearer and a better representation of this beautiful watch.
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