Peren has finally unleashed the Hintz! As I discussed in our first look at the Peren Hintz, the company isn’t a newcomer, but it might as well be. The past designs left a lot to be desired but offered gradual improvement. The Hintz sees the Swiss-based Transylvanian-bred brand seemingly hit their stride. Founder and watchmaker Andy Bica looked to his roots for inspiration, finding it in an ancient calendar found at some old Transylvanian ruins. The Hintz name is borrowed from Eugen Hintz, a revered Transylvanian watchmaker. Whether you buy into the backstory and inspiration or not, the design of the watch is undeniably appealing.
On the Wrist
Anyone familiar with the Unitas 6498 movement knows that it necessitates a larger watch. The Hintz is no exception. While the 42.5mm size may be a dealbreaker for some (including myself), I found the thinness afforded by the handwound movement allowed the watch to sit rather well on my wrist. This is further aided by lug holes placed almost parallel to the bottom of the case, reducing the gap between the lugs and my wrist.
With a wide dial and an unassuming bezel, the Peren Hintz looks a bit bigger than its stated diameter. The dial is open and uncluttered making it highly legible. I love the way the tones of orange, beige, and purples come together on this dial—it’s a palette I’ve not seen used before and it’s winning. My one gripe with the watch—and you could fairly accuse me of reaching on this one—is that only the hands are lumed, omitting any lume on the indices which might aid in low-light timetelling orientation.
Most watches with 22mm lugs look bad with 22mm lugs. But when you get into 42mm+ case diameters, they’re almost a necessity, as anything smaller would look diminutive. The Hintz is such a watch and the 22mm lugs work here, and the watch itself allows for a variety of straps, though I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing this with a NATO-style strap (okay, maybe a thin leather one).
With a classic no-frills case, it’s no surprise that the dial takes center stage on the Peren Hintz. Owing to the thin bezel, the dial dominates the watch, and that’s a good thing. Normally beige isn’t exciting, but when you pair it with orange and purple and other purple, baby, you got a stew going! With orange reminiscent of the rooftops of Transylvanian castles, and a reddish purple reminiscent of …Dracula’s food of choice, the Hintz creates an engaging dial on a base of beige.
A thin double ring in orange and purple encircles the dial at the periphery, with black minute hashes. I would’ve preferred that the hashes be purple, as is the inner ring, but no harm, no foul on this. Moving in, the numerals are a slightly lighter shade of purple outlined in the same shade of orange as on the outer ring. The simple pencil-style handset features the same color combo as the outer rings: orange-toned Super-LumiNova BGW9 is surrounded by a purple border.
The lume is totally adequate, but I do wish there were lume somewhere on the numerals or the minute track to orient the wearer in low-light situations. I do wish the hands were sized up just a bit, as they play a bit small on the expansive dial.
At 12 o’clock, the Peren logo—a stylized set of fangs—is above the brand’s name and hometown. More important is the rotating disc at 6 o’clock. (There is the option to get a small seconds version, the Hintz X, but why would you forgo one of the defining features of the Hintz? Why?) The disc is a representation of the “Andesite Sun” sundial at the ruins of the ancient Dacian capital of Sarmizegetusa Regia in Transylvania. The subdial is a perfectly scaled replica, except this is made of aluminum, for obvious reasons. Practically, it serves simply as a running indicator, but precludes to-the-second setting (already challenging as the watch does not hack). I’m happy making the sacrifice for a little piece of history.
Case and Strap
As I mentioned above, the case is a perfectly acceptable version of just alright. It doesn’t detract and it doesn’t enhance. Polished on the top and brushed on the sides, the case features crisp finishing and clean lines. Noted by this keen eye is the use of a beveled bezel. It’s not uncommon to see brands opt for a simple rounded bezel, fully polished. On the Peren Hintz, you’ll find a thin polished ring on top, with a brushed sloped side. This adds some nice contrast to the otherwise staid case.
Turning the watch over, a massive sapphire caseback shows off the Unitas 6498. We don’t usually talk about movements and specs here, but it should be mentioned that the Hintz is available with either a standard or elaboré grade movement; the latter affords a nicely finished movement (striping on the plates, blued screws, etc.) and improved accuracy (from what I could find, +/- 7 seconds over the standard’s +/- 12).
22mm lugs flow smoothly from the case and feature a generous topside curve. The location of the lug holes allows any strap to hug the wrist to minimize the perceived enormity of the watch. Strap changes were a breeze and I enjoyed the watch on a handful of straps. Though again, please don’t put this on a NATO-style strap—but also, go ahead and prove me wrong.
I’m a fan. There’s not much to dislike here: a unique color combination, solid design, a dash of history, and ties to a legendary region of the world. What’s to argue with? The watch will wear exceptionally well on larger wrists, but even my 7-inch wrist wasn’t overwhelmed. My only nitpicks were hand size and lack of lume—and those are by no means dealbreakers in this case.
Pricing on the Swiss-assembled Peren Hintz is spot on. At the current pre-order pricing, both models start at around $538 for the standard movement; add another $100 for the elaboré. When the watches are sold at retail, they will list around $750 and $950, respectively (a bit high, but not unreasonable). Having started with an overdone all-black quartz chrono, I’m glad to see Peren stepping in this direction. It’s always encouraging to see a brand evolve.
Check out the Peren website
Peren Hintz Specs
ETA Unitas 6498-1 Standard or Elaboré
More Images of the Peren Hintz