Rolex Cellini vs JLC Master Review - Chronoexpert

A watch designed for diving has certain criteria it must meet for safety reasons. The characteristics that make a good dress watch may not be so obvious. 

In all honesty, you can pretty much pick your own style when it comes to dressing up your look with a luxury watch. 

Two dress watches that face off frequently in the dress category are Rolex Cellini & Jaeger-LeCoultre Master. What happens when they go head-to-head in a dress watch battle?

Dress watches should elevate your look and take your black-tie to the next level. 

The watch face should also be thin enough to fit under a monogrammed cuff sleeve, and minimal enough not to fight style-wise with your three-piece suit. 

Your choice for a dress watch should be classic rather than trendy so it will never go out of style no matter where your style evolution takes you over the years. Both of these watches are a good choice but offer something different. 


Rolex Cellini vs JLC Master – let the contest begin


Rolex Cellini

Rolex Cellini is the dress line of the iconic brand, introduced under the model name Rolex Prince in 1928. This initial dress watch featured a rectangular case, which evolved through the years to include other shapes and sizes to appeal to a changing market. Named for the Renaissance-era Italian goldsmith and sculptor Benvenuto Cellini, the watch was meant to open a new market for Rolex.

Reborn in 2005, the Rolex Cellini Prince is a thoughtful recreation of the 1928 dress model.

The reissued version has evolved to include a Moonphase function that nods back to 1950s style Rolex models as well as time, date, and dual time features. Even in the clean, elegant dress models, Rolex technology is at the forefront.

The Rolex brand is one of the top brands in the world, synonymous with luxury watches. When most people, even watch collectors, think of Rolex, the Submariner springs to mind as one of the more iconic sporty models. 

When it comes to choosing a watch for an active lifestyle, Rolex Sea-Dweller, Explorer, and Deep Sea are better choices. 

Refined, elegant style needs a dress watch, and Rolex Cellini is a more classic, elegant style and is a great choice when it comes to selecting a watch to wear when dressing your best.

Rolex has been the epitome of Swiss craftsmanship since 1905, with a solid reputation worldwide for high profile, iconic watches. Among Rolex’s achievements in innovation are the chronometer certification, a waterproof case, and depth certification. 

Rolex has also been the pioneer in self-winding automatic movements as well as date display automation and many other disruptive technologies.


Under the Hood


Rolex manufactures its own movements including the one employed by the Cellini model. Featuring the Calibre 3135, the Cellini is self-winding and has the same reliable construction as Rolex dive and sport models. New Rolex Cellini models are water-resistant up to 50 meters, which is not a feature found in vintage models.


On the Wrist

At only 39 mm in diameter, with vintage versions in the 35 mm range, the Rolex Cellini is the perfect size dress watch. Looking smart and dapper with business attire, it is also capable of gracing the wrist of an opera-lover in black tie. 

Rolex Cellini is on the market in white, yellow, or rose gold and features dials both light and dark that are complemented by leather straps. Uncomplicated, as most dress watches are, the Rolex Cellini looks great with a dinner jacket.


Who Wears it Best?

Former U.S. President Barack Obama has been pictured wearing Rolex Cellini on several occasions, and he keeps good company. Gustavo Dudamel, music director of the LA Philharmonic, and other luminaries in art and music are all Rolex Cellini enthusiasts. 


During the filming of American Gangster in 2006, actor Russell Crowe treated himself to a Rolex Cellini; unfortunately, he let it go at his much-talked-about “Art of Divorce” auction in early 2018 where it brought just over $19 thousand AUS.


Pre Owned Rolex Cellini Watches for Sale

Rolex Cellini Dual Time

Rolex Cellini Prince

Rolex Cellini


The JLC Master

JLC manufactures the Master line of luxury watches that directly compete with the Rolex Cellini. JLC set the record for the world’s thinnest movement in 1907 with the Calibre LeCoultre 145, which still holds this record today.

Models such as the Grande Reverso, created for the polo set, have a rotating case for protecting the watch glass during a match. JLC produces diver’s watches as well, with the 1950 release of the Memovox model evolving into the AMVOX and Master Compressor lines.

The JLC Master is direct competition for Rolex Cellini, offering steel, yellow gold, and rose gold and functions from bare-bones to moon phase models and others. The JLC Master watches perfectly marry technology with elegance to create ultra-thin, modern timepieces with beautiful finishes. Slipping easily under the starched cuff of a dress shirt, JLC watches are deceptively elegant and highly technical.

Credit to

Founded in 1833, Jaeger-LeCoultre is a subsidiary of the Richemont Swiss luxury group and owns hundreds of inventions and patents and over one thousand of its own movements including some that are highly innovative. 

In fact, JLC is the designer and manufacturer of the Grande Complication, one of the world’s most complicated wristwatches, as well as the world’s smallest watch movement.

 Of particular note, in JLC’s rich history of innovation are three watches, the Hybris Mechanica 55, the brand’s most complicated wristwatch, the Hybris Mechanica Gyrotourbillon and the Hybris Mechanica a Triptyque. 

While Rolex is by far the more famous brand, JLC is often the more respected brand, with more in-house developments and interesting technology. Many other brands use JLC movements to this day, and the brand never stops impressing the luxury watch market with their new ideas.


Under the Hood


The Calibre LeCoultre 145, created in 1907, is still the thinnest movement in the world in its category, with a thickness of only 1.38 mm. Developed with this tradition in mind, today’s movements include the Calibre 849 manual wind movement and the Calibre 896 automatic wind movement are only 1.85 mm and 3.98 mm respectively. Even today, JLC is one of only a few luxury watch manufacturers that produce their movements completely in-house.


On the Wrist 

The JLC Master Ultra Thin is the epitome of elegance and features a clear, simple dial and gracefully designed case. JLC Master Ultra Thin is both timeless and modern, with a medium-sized 40 mm silver dial, elongated hour markers, and the discrete small second dial, date window, or moon phase dial positioned at 6 o’clock. 

Credit Jaeger-LeCoultre

The bracelet is rich crocodile leather with a silver clasp that works with fashion-forward to dressed-down looks. Just because a certain 007 wore a Rolex with his tuxedo does not mean everyone should. 


Who Wears it Best ?

With its rich history, Jaeger-LeCoultre has developed a following that is as interesting as its watches. Legendary English actor Charlie Chaplin and aviation pioneer Amelia Earhart are among notable owners of JLC watches.

Former President Bill Clinton and his predecessor Lyndon B. Johnson are also notable patrons of JLC, along with American Five-star General Douglas MacArthur, rapper Jay Z, and actors Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert Downey Jr.


Pre Owned JLC Watches for Sale

Jaeger-Lecoultre Master Ultra Thin 

Jaeger-Lecoultre Master Ultra Thin

Jaeger-Lecoultre 41mm


Rolex Cellini vs JLC Master – Which Watch?


As the most recognizable luxury watch brand in the world, Rolex is at the top of the list and JLC pales in comparison, if the name is your thing. As a brand known and respected by watch-lovers, and a name synonymous with high horology, JLC is in their own class.

Both brands manufacture excellent watches, and both brands are rich in watchmaking history. Each brand offers models that are sporty and durable as well as a wide selection of classic and refined models.


Which is Better?


The answer is that both Rolex and JLC are great at certain things in their own right. If you already own a few nice luxury watches and want something more interesting, JLC is your brand because it is more exclusive and a finer type of watch.

Those of you out to impress your friends, neighbors, and co-workers, should go for a Rolex for instant recognition. Both brands offer high quality, durable watches in elegant, refined styles throughout the Cellini and Master lines. 

Take our advice and buy your next luxury watch for yourself rather than to impress anyone else. Choose a watch that speaks to you, one that will become part of your daily life no matter what that is. If you do not love the watch you choose, you will not wear it, and watches are meant to be worn, enjoyed, and to mark and remember special milestones and accomplishments.

Have you decided on the brand appeal of the Rolex Cellini or the delightfully restrained design of the JLC Master, and need help with finding the perfect Rolex vintage? 

Our experts are just steps away from giving you all the personal assistance you need to find the perfect watch. Our fine selection is waiting for you to reach out and discover your new favorite luxury watch.

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