By Jason Heaton
on 9.18.12

The Panerai new Luminor Submersible 1950 Amagnetic 3 Days Automatic Titanio (PAM 389) is the watch to strap on the night before the Mayan calendar ends. Look past its encyclopedic name and you’ll find a mashup of features that make this piece perhaps the most capable timekeeper the venerable Italian instrument maker has produced. Let’s run through the list.

The PAM 389’s case is made from grade 5 titanium, which not only keeps the weight of this 47mm leviathan reasonable, but also extremely strong and highly corrosion-resistant. Titanium is also less affected by magnetic fields than steel, which leads us to the next point. Inside the case, the movement is further surrounded by a soft iron Faraday cage, which protects it even more from magnetism, an arch-enemy of delicate watch movements. Combined, these advances give the ticker a 40,000 A/m rating which, unless you’re an MRI technician, should be enough to keep it unaffected by anything life throws at you, like large stereo speakers or limpet mines. Considering Panerai’s history as a military dive watch, this is a fitting property.

Speaking of diving, as part of Panerai’s “Submersible” dive watch line, the PAM 389 also features an external ratcheting timing bezel. But for the first time in Panerai’s history, this one isn’t naked metal but rather has a ceramic insert, which renders it extremely scratch-resistant.

Panerai used to be a brand sniffed at by timekeeping purists due to its use of third party pocketwatch movements. But in the past few years, the brand built a new factory in Switzerland and is moving most of its timepieces to calibres developed entirely in-house. The calibre P.9000 has two mainspring barrels that endow the watch with a three-day power reserve should you decide to give your wrist a rest every now and then.

All told, the Luminor Submersible 1950 Amagnetic 3 Days Automatic Titanio is a force to be reckoned with and will no doubt be on the wrists of half the cast of “The Expendables 3” next year when they set out to save the world yet again. The PAM 389 will be officially released at the Salon International Haute Horlogerie next January, with a price over $11,000. That is, if the Mayans were wrong.

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