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Rolex Milgauss: Next Level Outliers

Rolex Milgauss: Next Level Outliers

Rolex Milgauss

The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss is a pioneering anti-magnetic timepiece built to satisfy the needs of engineers and scientists. Developed in 1956, the Rolex Milgauss can repel magnetic fields of up to 1,000 gauss. This earned it the “mille” in its name, which is the French word for one thousand. Being a one-of-a-kind wristwatch, the Rolex Milgauss merges distinctive aesthetics with a scientific legacy.

In addition, Rolex Milgauss is a fascinating timepiece in the Rolex line-up with its first launch happening in 1956. It is a watch for scientists and engineers. More so, the timepiece got its name from the combination of two words —“mille” + “gauss” = Milgauss.

Worthy of notes are the two iterations of the Milgauss that emerged in the early 50s and 60s. These were the Reference 6541 and 1019. However, the Ref 1019 version was in production until 1988 when it became discontinued because of its lack of popularity among Rolex lovers.

The Faraday Cage Is Back

The Rolex Milgauss pays homage to the concept of employing a Faraday cage. This Faraday cage is a product of ferromagnetic alloys that helps to shield the movement. The cage is a medley of two shields with one shield screwed to the movement and the other fastened to the cage. 

With this shield, the Faraday cage prevents the movement’s parts from getting magnetized. The effectiveness got a stamp of approval when the watch underwent testing at The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN). What do you expect after so much work went into its creation? The watch passed the testing excellently. 

In recent news, the Milgauss once again made a comeback to the Rolex collection in 2007. In the beginning, the reactions came in two ways. While some collectors became instant huge fans of the timepiece, others were indifferent or simply not excited.

However, collectors seem to be catching on to the fever of this fascinating timepiece over time. That brings up the question of how this watch fared in over a decade of its comeback. Here, we take a more in-depth look at this tool watch; its history, development, components, and outstanding quality. 

The Journey Of A Thousand “Milles” 

the Milgauss journey

This journey of a thousand “milles” (the Milgauss) bears a close connection to the history of Rolex itself. From the beginning, Rolex took off on its first real change in design. The brand debuted a new GMT-Master, introducing the world to the revolutionary “super case.” Not long after, the brand introduced the Cerachrom bezel set on a gold watch. 

Fast forward to 2007, Rolex followed these up with a steel model of the GMT-Master. Needless to say, such a change was quite drastic for a re-imagination of a Rolex product. Still, the Crown continued to shock the watch market audiences.

Together with the steel GMT-Master, Rolex restored a magical, and user-specific timepiece from its archive. Here was the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss! This timepiece had the design and application of a tool watch for scientists in the 1950s. This watch is what works for scientists who need a timepiece that could measure up to magnetic fields.

In many ways, the Rolex Milgauss was always something of an eccentric output. Among its main qualities was a striking lightning bolt-shaped seconds hand that made this watch stand out.

Meanwhile, this timepiece was in certain ways a forgotten offering. Clearly, this was not one watch anybody thought could hit a comeback after going obscure. However, it was and it came back in grand style!

During its launch, Rolex revealed three varieties of the watch, namely:

  • A standard black dial featuring orange markers
  • Another version with a white dial and orange markers (the “creamciscle”) 
  • Then, the totally off-the-walls variety featuring markers taking turns in orange and white. This color mix gets capped off with a green crystal. 

One thing cuts across every watch. They all had the following:

  • A bright orange lighting bolt-shaped seconds hand
  • Thick steel oyster case
  • Steel Oyster bracelet with shifting brushed and polished finishes.

Cased Robustly

The Rolex Milgauss comes with a design similar to many other Rolex watches. Simply a tool watch cased robust yet strikingly handsome. It comes enclosed in a 40mm case that settles between being a tool watch and a somewhat versatile watch. This watch is perfect for both casual and more formal outings. 

What we love about the Oyster case is its lovely well-finished texture. As usual, it comes with a myriad of mirror-finished and brushed polishing systems.

Dialed In Style

The more striking element of the timepiece therein lies in the dial of the watch and the hands it features. The Milgauss comes in a wide variety of dial colors. There is the z-blue color, the black, and the discontinued white color. The most popular option among these three remains the electric sunburst blue dial. 

the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss dial

Paired with a green-tinted sapphire crystal also known as the “Glace Verde” or green glass, this watch is dialed in style. According to Rolex, the green sapphire crystal was quite tough to produce. This addition is a testament to Rolex’s readiness to make things work regardless of obstacles. This unique glass sapphire crystal is resistant to both scratch and fade. Also, it is only exclusive to the Milgauss line of watches.

Completing the dial are the stick indices, with Chromalight filling them up. As for the black dial version, the indices set at the 3, 6, and 9 o’clock positions are in orange. This choice intensifies the theme of electricity rather grandly to the delight of the Rolex Milgauss lovers.

One more significant point is the colorfully striking orange seconds hand and outer minute track. As for the colorfully striked orange seconds hand, it features an intriguing shape that looks like a lightning bolt motif. 

More so, the Rolex Milgauss script set at the 12 o’clock position of the dial is also in orange like others. It is a perfect combination revealing a fierce aura. This aspect of the watch makes the watch stand out as a more remarkable timepiece from Rolex.

Handled Sleekly

Suited to the watch is Rolex’s trademark Oyster bracelet. which finishes off the appearance of the timepiece. Its decent case size and user-centric design mean the Rolex Milgauss wears comfortably on the wrist. The only issue we may possibly have with this bracelet is the central link of the bracelet. This central link unfortunately makes it highly vulnerable to hairline scrapes because of its mirror-polished covering.

Efficient Self-Winding Power 

Rolex Milgauss with efficient  power

Powered by the brand’s in-house Caliber 3131, the Rolex Milgauss functions as a self-winding movement. The movement delivers an outstanding and efficient power reserve that lasts up to 48 hours. 

Take away the anti-magnetic Parachrom hairspring, this watch also comes fitted with an extra magnetic shield that shields the movement. To round it off, the movement that powers this watch is Superlative Chronometer certified. Also, the watch has a deviation of not more than 2 seconds a day.

The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss Excelling Among Competitions

The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss retails at a base price of S$11,600. This price is slightly expensive for a time-only watch. Regardless, it is Rolex and Rolex can get away with such a decision. This timepiece is robust, plus, it retains its quality and worth exceptionally well.

Nonetheless, looking beyond the aesthetics, the Milgauss in every inch of its design remains a true-blue Rolex wristwatch. Here is a properly crafted tool watch that leaves no stone unturned. Also, it can deliver whenever it is time and its functionality comes to the fore. 

In addition, the sizing of this timepiece is done quite satisfactorily as well. This quality alone makes it wear very comfortably on the wrist. The Rolex Milgauss is a decent option for anyone who is out in search of a durable daily beating timepiece.

More so, the fact that the Rolex Milgauss maintained excellence for nearly 15 years is laudable. It is certainly not an accident that the Milgauss excelled while others failed. Here is a horological version of Darwinism. It is simply a natural selection. 

Lastly, when you check out the acceptance this watch enjoyed, it proves the quality it delivers. Clearly, the larger consumer base saw the quality the watch serves and chose wisely. Following the acceptance the watch enjoyed, in 2014, Rolex deemed it fit to include yet another Milgauss to the line-up.

This new addition is the Z-Blue that stands out due to its sunray blue dial. And similar to the Milgauss style, guess what this watch had protecting its dial? An unusual patent-less green crystal. The Rolex Milgauss is a king in its lane.

Our Assessment Of The Milgauss Timepiece

The Milgauss may not be one of those best sellers we find out there. The release of this watch didn’t see watch buyers come out in droves to buy the timepiece. Nevertheless, there was at least some degree of success and certain events that indicated that this timepiece was a resounding success. The Rolex Milgauss was so successful that it remained a constant figure in the Rolex catalog. This timepiece held on to its prestige and status for as long as 15 years. 

Considering how most watches turn out, this is a literal eternity especially when it comes to Rolex references. Here is a sales and production run similar to that of the ref 5513 Submariner and the ref 1016 Explorer.

the Milgauss timepiece from Rolex

We particularly see this piece as an untainted prototype of Rolex’s ingenuity. Also, we believe that the horological hive-mind delivers what will be a course correction. This modern version presents a correction to the fallen standard the older Milgauss version delivered.

Other Competitions

There is some competition to the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss in the watch market. Here are a few of them and how the Rolex Milgauss measures up.

Moreover, when it comes to design and aesthetics, you have to give it to the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss. It doesn’t get bolder, more confident, and perhaps in any way more animated than this watch gets. If you are one of those who comment about how uneventful Rolexes can be, the Milgauss is here. It is clearly a breath of fresh air for lovers of eventful wristwatches. 

The IWC Ingenieur is one of the major competitors in the watch market. This watch integrates both form and functionality without glitches. The height of this watch’s fame came in the 1970s, where Gerald Genta remodeled the collection. 

Gerald Genta successfully developed a fierce-looking luxury sports watch. This remodeled watch came with an angular case and an integrated bracelet. Then came the modern variant with a slightly more subtle outlook. However, it is undeniably a good-looking watch. With a starting price of CHF 5,900 (approximately S$8,895), the Ingenieur Automatic is an ideal option for someone who desires a durable timepiece that is luxurious and modest.

Another option is the Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 15,000 Gauss. The watch debuted in 2013 as a striking timepiece that sets forth the ideal of watchmaking excellence with the modern silicon hairspring.

Presently, this watch is a mainstay in most of the Co-Axial movements. A notable quality of the Aqua Terra is its fierce-looking design with its midnight blue dial. This watch comes equipped with loud yellow accents together with a black-yellow striped seconds hand. Here is a watch with a base price set at S$8,550.


Not so many options with the Rolex Milgauss for Rolex lovers. It’s either you love or you hate the Milgauss. There are simply no two ways about it. We must admit that this watch is probably one of the most bizarre yet impressive Rolexes in the contemporary watch market. 

The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Milgauss now sits side by side in the Rolex lineup with some of the best. This Rolex Milgauss with a black dial still looks the best in a stunning black, orange, and green blend of colors.

The Rolex Milgauss is a rare and distinct Rolex offering. As long as it stays in production, it will remain a standout product for lovers of Rolex watches with fascinating make-ups.


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