‘Simultaneously totally opulent yet somehow tasteful.’ That is how I’ve previously described the 1680/8 conversationally and stand by it. Rolex’s fabled gold Submariner may in fact be the single watch most classically representative of the ‘fuck-you-money’ attitude, and somehow it has aged into a thing of connoisseurship and studied attention. Times change, and we’re in an age where the only thing worse than being sponsored by Richard Mille is actually paying for one. I jest, relax (easy target). For those who want a game over watch with pedigree and are not shy, look no further.
The gold sub was born in 1969 with either black or blue matched dials and bezels. Blue dials mostly went tropical over time, black ones mostly did not. To mark an extra distinction over the standard 1680, Rolex used applied indices also in gold. The centers are tritium. Their shape helps give this style the name nipple dial. The nipple dial aesthetic is deeply sought after by collectors, and copied in innumerable other manufactures. was succeeded by the 16800 series of date-sub. If I were the purchaser of this example, I’d probably take the time to hunt down a year-correct gold bracelet also. That is a task which will require extreme patience. With any set of shoes, however, this thing is a total dream.
For what is a very soft gold alloy, the case on it is remarkably sharp. Lugs still display their bevels and the back has only light marking. Its dial is unmarred, same can be said of the handset. Tritium applications are cream and evenly matched. Not frequently will a collector come across a watch of this calibre. It comes from a small, well regarded Dutch retailer.
Find this 1680/8 here from Vintage TImes Amsterdam for 63000 USD.