2021 promises to be a great year for independent and Microbrand watches. The Loresum LS01 is an unusual design, but is it worth the money?
Loresum LS01 Review
I got a very early look at the Loresum LS01 – in fact it was so early that the packaging, strap and even the launch date were not yet finalised. As a result, I’ve had to make some assumptions in this review and recommend that you do some further research if you are thinking of backing the watch on Kickstarter. The watch will be priced at HKD$6000-$7200 which – at the time of writing – is about £550-£675. That is in-line with similarly specified watches from NTH, Neucarl and Roebuck – all of which set the standards for microbrand dress watches in 2020.
The Loresum LS01 is a big watch for a non-diver: the 316L case has a 42mm diameter. Without a rotating bezel to make it look smaller, that can cause a watch to wear very big. As it is, the LS01 is actually very comfortable to wear. The short lugs help in that regard, as well as the multi-layered dial. The top of the watch is dominated by a flat sapphire crystal; and the Miyota 9015 movement is visible through the case back. The Miyota is a good choice. It is reliable, accurate, cost-effective and here is has been modified to show the time via rotating discs instead of hands.
The case is excellent – the finishing is on a par with the best I have seen in a microbrand (NTH Thresher, take a bow). The edges are bevelled, with the bevel being polished and brushing either side. I was so impressed I took some rare close up photographs of the finish. The crown on the review sample is unsigned – the crown will be changed in the production models – for the asking price, I am expecting an engraved or embossed (not laser etched) signed crown. I’m assuming in my verdict that this will be the case.
Dial and Hand
No, that’s not a typo – there is just the one hand on the Loresum LS01! First up, the dial is excellent. It has multiple layers of polished metal, with sapphire discs in lieu of hands. Through the sapphire discs, you can see the modifications the Loresum has made to the Miyota movement to allow this innovative time-telling approach. The date wheel is also partially visible through gaps in the dial and the whole thing just oozes quality.
A single, sweeping second hand rotates around the dial, and you read the time via the little pips at what would normally be the 3 and 6 markers. It’s a neat idea, which reminds me of the MAALS Jump Over the Moon. Like the MAALS watch, the downside o this design is that it is relatively hard to tell the time (and nigh on impossible after dark) but as a fashion statement it is brilliant and I love it.
Strap and buckle
The review sample I was sent had not yet been fitted with the final strap, so I am not able to give an opinion. If it is fitted with anything better than a “standard” strap: genuine leather with a laser-etched tang buckle, then consider that to be added value. I’m giving my verdict on the watch with that assumption.
Loresum LS01 – Video Review
What I Liked
- The build quality in all areas is absolutely superb
- I love to see a brand trying something different with dial design
- Given the innovative features, the asking price is a bargain
What I Didn’t Like
- I was disappointed not to get a feel for the actual strap that will be supplied with the watch
- I wasn’t able to make a judgement of the crown, I assume the final version will be signed and hope it is engraved or embossed, not laser-etched
- I have to point out that it’s not so easy to tell the time on this watch!
Loresum LS01 – the WRUK Verdict
It’s not that long since I picked out my top 3 watches of 2020 but I dare say the Loresum LS01 will be a contender for this year’s best buy. I love the bold design, the build quality is amongst the best I have seen, and the Kickstarter price is spot on – especially when you consider that most of the components of the watch are custom-designed and the movement has been modified from a standard Miyota to allow for the rotating discs. The unknown quantities are not enough to break the deal: many people change the straps on their watches straight away so I’m making a judgement of the watch’s value without including it, and even if the crown only has a laser-etched logo rather than an engraving it would be a minor niggle, not a deal-breaker when you take the full package into account.
It’s not often I am sad to return a review watch to its creator but on this occasion, I’ll miss the watch. I accept that its design will not be to everyone’s taste, but if you want a change from the parade of identikit dive watches that dominate the watch review blogs, you should put the Loresum LS01 at the top of your shopping list.
Buy a Loresum LS01
The Loresum LS01 is now live on Kickstarter, click here to view the project and make a pledge to buy one.