When it comes to watches, sometimes we will smack them around for blatant copying of details of a higher-profile, well-known brand. Other times, a brand will obviously reference another watch, but it’s done in a way that doesn’t feel like a blatant ripoff. In my book, that’s what we’ve got here with the Creux Automatic Diamondback.

The most obvious “homage” detail on the Creux Automatic Diamondback are the fasteners mounted on the bezel, as well as the lug configuration (and, to a lesser extent, the bracelet). Myself personally, I could have done without the fasteners there, but I’m not a watch designer. After a while, I actually noticed them less, and it was actually the pattern in the dial that drew my eye more.

Here, you’ve got a diamond texture that could be a pixelated approximation of snake skin (hey, fits the Creux Automatic Diamondback name!) but I really just liked how it caught the light, and made a sort of burnout fade look from the center to the edges. In and amongst those angles, you’ve got some rounded edges encroaching, in the form of the golden-ringed small seconds, and the even smaller (almost too small) date window. All in all, it made for a very interesting look on the front of the watch.

Moving on to the bracelet of the Creux Automatic Diamondback, you could visualize it as the belly of a snake, with how those scales interlock (and yes, it looks similar to a Vacheron design). And it was interesting, when I was sizing the bracelet, these links do lock together in an interesting way. When they do that, the bracelet does not bend out at all – only in, to form the circular shape. Interesting, while the closure is friction fit, they also have a fold-over clasp in place. This felt a little belt-and-suspenders, but I suppose it’s a way to get some more branding in place. Me, I’d delete it, unless they’ve had problems with the friction closure.

Around the back of the watch, you’ve got a view into the Swisstech CA24 movement. This is a movement I had never heard of before. Doing some digging, and landing on the site of yet another brand I had not heard of before, I found out that the movement itself is a clone of the ETA 2824. Not sure what that means for serviceability or reliability, but it’s coming from some good bones, I suppose.

And really, that’s the story of the Creux Automatic Diamondback for me. There’s nothing about it that felt like it was outright a clone, but there are those little things here and there (the design cues, the knockoff movement) that put a question mark in my mind about the watch. And when you’re paying $1,850 you don’t want those questions in your mind.

And, frankly, that’s a shame. In my time with the watch, it kept admirable time, the bracelet was a delight to wear (and played with light like you can’t even imagine, like the dial did). This feels like a watch that should be able to stand on it’s own merits, but those question marks just sort of pump the breaks. Had they managed to do this design with a smooth bezel and, say, a Selitta movement, we’d be having a very different discussion about this watch. Past that, there really is a lot to like about the watch – there’s just something about it that gives me the shivers, and would have be giving it a pass. Me, I’ll wait to see what the next iteration can bring along. creuxautomatiq.com

Review Summary

  • Brand & Model: Creux Automatic Diamondback
  • Price: $1,850
  • Who?s it for? Someone who isn’t bugged by the same questions that were raised in my mind by the bezel design and clone movement
  • Would I wear it? Nope, it’s a pass for me
  • What I?d change: Make that bezel design your own, and get a non-clone movement in the mix – or at least one that isn’t so opaque about it’s origins
  • The best thing about it: How the dial and bracelet play with the light

Tech Specs from Creux Automatiq

  • Case Size: 40mm
  • Dimensions: 40mm x 47mm x 10.6mm
  • Case material: 316L Stainless Steel
  • Strap: 316L Stainless Steel
  • Clasp: Butterfly Deployment Clasp
  • Top Lens: Sapphire Crystal
  • Water Resistance: 5 ATM (50 Meters)
  • Lume: Super-LumiNova
  • Movement: Swisstech CA24-041
  • Made in: Switzerland