When Monta announced the Noble, I immediately emailed them asking when I would be able to get my hands on one of the review samples. While I waited for it to arrive for review, I spent a lot of time looking at what was new on the Noble. It obviously has some new elements such as the handset and markers. The Noble marks the first big design change for Monta; their design language has been extremely consistent since their inaugural watch, the Oceanking.
There are certain elements on the Noble familiar to those who have followed Monta’s releases over the past few years. The bracelet, general case shape, and fixed bezel are all things that exist on the Triumph and Atlas. However, there is more happening with the Noble than meets the eye. Let’s take a closer look.
On the Wrist
If you’re looking for something to replace your hopes and dreams of owning a Rolex Oyster Perpetual 39, the Monta Noble is your best bet. The on-wrist looks are undeniably similar. While there are differences in where the brushing and polishing have been placed, the Monta is finished just as well as the Rolex. The Noble shares a similar case with the Triumph and Atlas, the main difference being the mirror-polished bezel on the Noble. It’s a subtle change but it dramatically changes the look of the watch. The reflections created by the bezel are captivating to look at.
I was concerned the change in handset from Monta’s previous releases would degrade the legibility of the watch as the hands are thinner. However, the hands pop off the dial and maintain the same legibility of other Monta watches (which has always been great).
Monta has billed the Noble under the classic sport watch category. Designed to fit somewhere between a dress watch and a tool watch, the Noble isn’t quite a jack of all trades, but it excels at what it aims to accomplish. On the bracelet it maintains its sporty looks, and easily dresses up on a leather strap. The shape of the markers and how they are finished also create a touch of bling that one might want as a dressier option.
Every Monta watch I’ve had for review often makes me endlessly stare at my wrist. They’re all beautiful in their own way and the Noble is no different. I did find the Noble to be on the next level when it comes to beauty in Monta’s lineup. Out of their 5 releases, I believe the Noble to be the prettiest of them all. The mirror-polished bezel combined with the new handset and overall finishing create a drop- dead gorgeous watch. There are watches that are good-looking and then there are beautiful watches. The Noble is the latter.
Monta Noble Video Review
The Noble’s dial is the largest change in Monta’s design language since their inception. Their watches have all used broad sword hands and chunky markers. The Noble breaks away from that theme with a new handset and marker style.
The hands are thin stick hands with subtle points at their ends. A nice touch is how the points are the same on both ends of the hands. It creates a nice balance on the handset. The seconds hand is like Monta’s previous seconds hands except that it lacks a lumed tip and is entirely polished.
The markers have also evolved and while they have a slight resemblance to Monta’s other marker styles, they are smaller and refined to match the slightly dressier appearance of the Noble. Each marker is lumed and features a small bevel on its tip. Because of this, they play with the light beautifully and create some wonderful reflections that make you want to twist your wrist just to see them shimmer.
The handset and markers are nice, but the real standout is the dégradé dial. The sunburst blue dial fades to black as it reaches the outer edge of the dial. The brighter blue in the middle is always visible and is truly captivating to look at. It really pops in sunlight and brings out the brighter hues of blue in the dial. Monta also offers the Noble in a more subtle dial color, opaline silver. It may fly under the radar a little more than the blue sunburst, giving you some options depending on your personal style.
The Noble is the first Monta watch that doesn’t have the name of the watch printed on the dial. In its place are the words Self-Winding, which makes me think of older Tudors that often had this printed on their dials. The Monta logo has also been tweaked for the Noble. The curves on the logo are more deliberate and defined. While the change is subtle, it does seem to fit the watch well.
Case and Bracelet
If you’ve read any my other Monta reviews, you’ll already know how fantastic their finishing is. The brushing on the case is so good that the metal almost feels soft. It’s a strange effect but it is something that doesn’t exist on other watches at this price point.
If this is your first time reading a review of a Monta, I’ll share a few of the things that make the finishing so fantastic. Stepping down from the mirror-polished bezel, there is a small polished chamfer that gives the bezel even more definition. The top and sides of the case are brushed and the inside and outside of the lugs feature a polished chamfer. The chamfer on the inside of the lugs is one of Monta’s calling cards and carries on to the bracelet chamfers perfectly.
As I mentioned before, the case of the Noble is like the case of the Triumph and Atlas. There are a few subtle changes, but the overall shape and dimensions are largely the same. The only real complaint I can level at the case is how the lugs come out from the case as they meet the bracelet. They give the watch a square-ish appearance. The shape reminds me of a more refined version of a Rolex maxi-case Submariner. I wouldn’t mind seeing Monta thin out the outside of the lugs to give the lugs more definition as they leave the case sides.
Monta has fitted the Noble with the same bracelet present on their other watches. The fully articulating links on the bracelet are also finished beautifully and feature small polished chamfers on the sides. Monta is also now fitting their bracelets with their great quick-adjust clasp. Combined with the half links, I was able to get a perfect fit. Monta’s bracelet is one of the most comfortable bracelets available on any watch.
The Monta Noble falls into the same category in terms of looks with some of the great sport watches coming from the larger Swiss brands. I’d stack it up to an Omega Aqua Terra or Rolex Oyster Perpetual any day of the week, but those watches cost 3-4 times what the Noble does. Let’s see how it stacks up against similar watches in a similar price segment.
Oris Big Crown Pointer Date
There are some large differences in appearance between the Noble and the Pointer Date, but they both fall into a unique category: watches that can be easily dressed up but remain sporty and classic in their own way. The Oris is similarly sized with a fixed bezel and unique blue dial. Where the Noble takes the lead is with applied markers and better finishing.
Norqain Freedom 60 39mm
I reviewed the larger 41mm Norqain Freedom 60 and it is a great watch in the sport watch segment. They recently launched a smaller 39mm variant of the watch and while it is smaller and more in line with the Noble, it is likely that the Noble will wear smaller because of its thinner case. Another advantage the Noble has is it is priced competitively even at full MSRP when stacked up next to the Norqain.
The Seiko SARB033/035 was the first watch that came to mind when thinking of a competitor for the Noble, but while the SARB is a great watch, it has too many shortcomings when compared to the Noble. However, the upscale SARX series is on a different level, so much so as that they are often referred to as baby Grand Seikos. The SARX033 competes more with the silver-dial Noble and carries the same sporty aesthetic as the Noble.
The Noble marks the next evolution of Monta’s watches. I’ve wanted Monta to take more risks with their designs as their watches do share a lot of the same elements. Monta has certainly done that on parts of the Noble and the changes they’ve made are refreshing. The new handset fits the watch perfectly and I can’t see how their sword handset would work on it; it was a great decision. With that said, I want to see the next evolution of Monta’s cases. They have the creativity and resources to create something novel.
My favorite Monta has become the Noble. Everything is in the right place and the proportions are executed so well. It fits the wrist comfortably and looks even better. There are plenty of watches that I find myself staring at, but Monta seems to have this effect on me with every release. The Noble takes this effect to another level. The Noble is Monta’s best watch…so far.
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Monta Noble Specs
Monta Caliber M-22 (base Sellita SW300)