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Review: Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece MOP Ref. 18946 | Limited Edition

Review: Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece MOP Ref. 18946 | Limited Edition

rolex day date masterpiece on the wrist

Presenting a hands-on review of a truly magnificent timepiece, the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date Pearlmaster from the Masterpiece series, reference 18946

The Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 is a watch for the ages. It has an incredibly luxurious appearance and irresistible charm. It’s made entirely from platinum, with a design that highlights softly curved lines, exquisitely rich details, and a Pearlmaster bracelet. 

Rolex day-date masterpiece review

The Day-Date Masterpiece has a special place in the Day-Date collection. The timepieces are a flawless representation of precious jewelry watchmaking. They feature only the finest materials, like gold, platinum, diamonds and sapphires, in a way that is not only refined and elegant, but also robust and reliable. 

Rolex discontinued the Masterpiece series a few years back. The beautiful timepieces saw only a short run with a limited production. Thus, these watches are extremely rare. It’s not often that you will spot a Day-Date Masterpiece, let alone the Masterpiece reference 18946, in person. 

Rare, lush, rich and masterfully engineered, the Rolex Masterpiece 18946 with an MOP (Mother of Pearl) dial lives up to its name and all the hype. 

Read on to learn more about this special timepiece. 

This Rolex 18946 Day-Date Masterpiece MOP watch is now for sale at Diamonds By Raymond Lee in Boca Raton. It is in perfect condition with all of its original parts, box and papers. 


As the Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece was derived from the Pearlmaster collection, let’s begin there…

Back in 1992, Rolex unveiled a brand new watch model called the Pearlmaster. The Pearlmaster was established as Rolex’s high-end, jewelry-natured watch collection. 

Pearlmaster timepieces are only crafted from precious metals, and they are always embellished with gemstones. Furthermore, the Pearlmaster collection features a signature design trait, the Pearlmaster bracelet. It is a sumptuously sweeping five-piece link bracelet with a concealed Crownclasp. The Pearlmaster bracelet is curvier than the Oyster bracelet and offers more solidity than the Jubilee and President bracelet. 

While Rolex originally only coupled the Pearlmaster bracelet with Lady-Datejusts, in the early 2000s, Rolex introduced new, special edition Day-Date watches fitted with the Pearlmaster bracelet. These watches were called the Day-Date Masterpiece.

Rolex Day Date masterpiece review
The Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 

The Day-Date Masterpiece series surprised the watch community with a few significant changes.

They flaunted the largest case the Day-Date had ever seen (up until 2008 when the 41mm Day-Date II was unveiled). Classic Day-Date cases were 36mm, while the Masterpiece was 39mm in diameter. Moreover, it had a Pearlmaster bracelet rather than the Rolex President bracelet that everyone came to expect from Day-Date watches. 

It was also by far the most lavish Day-Date you could buy. A special attribute of the Masterpiece was they all came adorned with diamonds in the bezel and on the dial. Many even featured beautifully iridescent MOP dials. 

And, of course, they were only produced in gold or platinum, which Rolex made in-house at their private foundry.

Even though the reception for the Day-Date Masterpiece was fantastic from the very start, the collection was set to be a limited edition series, so not many were produced. The Masterpiece series became discontinued in the early 2010s, and it is now one of the most sought after Day-Date watches in the world. 


Rolex 18946 review

The Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 you see here is dated 2002 with a “P” serial number. This platinum timepiece is extremely rare, having only a limited production run in the early 2000s. 

It features 40 factory-set round brilliant diamonds in the bezel and a stunning MOP dial with diamond indices.

The watch has an aesthetic that expresses the perfect amalgamation of techno-industrial, extravagant elegance, and classic appeal. It stands out, above and beyond other watches, giving an unrivaled feeling of richness, timeless style, and mechanical prowess.

We are currently listing this watch at an exclusive price of $56,995. Below we will go into detail about the case, bezel, dial, bracelet, movement and how it feels on the wrist. 


The Oyster case is 39 millimeters in diameter, which is substantially larger than a standard Day-Date and other luxury dress watches. It wears even larger too. From lug to lug it is 45.3mm, but if you include the end links it splays out to an appreciable 53.9mm, with 20mm spacing between the lugs.

That said, it is relatively slim, at 12.4mm in thickness. This gives it the perfect amount of wrist presence while also never getting in the way. It will slide under a dress cuff with ease. This is the only low profile thing about this watch.

In terms of design, the solid platinum case is very fluid and shapely. It actually shares some likeness to the Daytona, with its prominent flatted underside lug profile. 

From profile view, the case has a wonderfully sensuous curvature. There isn’t a single hard angle. 

There’s also not a single brush finish. The Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 platinum case is entirely high polish. It gives the watch an exquisitely dramatic appearance and a much more jewelry-esque pop. 

100 Meters Water Resistance

As it is an Oyster case with a Twinlock double waterproofness system, it guarantees water resistance down to a depth of 100 meters (or 330 feet). This allows for the optimum protection of the Pearlmaster’s high-precision movement during anything water related.

Needless to say, the case has it all, robustness, elegance, proportion and unwavering protection. 

day date reference 18946 review


The smooth platinum bezel is embellished with 40 round brilliant diamonds, and they are truly magnificent. The diamonds color, clarity, and carats are of the highest quality, as you would only expect from Rolex. 

Rolex’s personal gemology laboratory checks everything with lasers so each diamond matches the other flawlessly. The diamonds gracing a Pearlmaster Masterpiece have been selected through extremely rigorous criteria. Not only must they be the same size but they must also produce the same intense radiance. 

Moreover, they are set within the bezel so perfectly and discreetly that they will never leave their place or succumb to external forces. 

From a profile view, you can see the bezel is beveled. That way the diamonds can be seen from all angles. The crisp smooth edges of the bezel are also high polish, offering the perfect contrast for the brilliant diamonds. 


Underneath a virtually impossible to scratch sapphire crystal rests a gorgeous, emphatically iridescent Mother of Pearl dial. 

It is a classic Mother of Pearl, but pictures alone could never do justice to the prismatic and chromatic quality. It features a wide range of colors and hues. It’s almost like the entire ROYGBIV of the rainbow can be seen with a turn of the wrist. Of course, like any classic Rolex MOP dial, the inside lining of the pearl naturally emphasizes pink.

What is an MOP Dial?

As you’ve gathered, MOP stands for “Mother of Pearl”. It is created from the outer coating of the inside lining of a pearl, as the name would suggest. At Rolex, the MOP dial is never artificially colored and everything is done in-house. Tons of work and skill goes into enhancing the natural beauty and preserving the original hues. What’s really special about a MOP dial is every single one is unique because every pearl is different on the inside (it’s like our fingerprints). Therefore, there will never be an identical dial when it comes to a Rolex Mother of Pearl watch.

Diamond Indices

The grandeur doesn’t end with the MOP dial itself. The Rolex Masterpiece 18946 wears 10 diamonds on the dial as well. They appear almost like little icebergs floating on a bottomless sea thanks to the incredible depth of the 3D-ish MOP backdrop.

The “life raft” for the diamonds floating above the base is made purely from white gold. White gold surrounds all the indices as well as the date and day display. Moreover, the Rolex crown and seconds, minute and hour hands are white gold. This ensures nothing will ever tarnish. 

The dial is nothing but a true metier d’art. Even among the best watchmakers in the world, Rolex is the master of creating all aspects of a dial in-house.  


Day-date masterpiece review

The Pearlmaster bracelet is not a style that you will see often, as Rolex rarely rolls them out. So, it’s definitely a more scarce sight to see when comparing to Oyster, Jubilee or even President bracelets. 

The bracelet has an almost industrial-like elegance to it. It really defies description…but we will do our best.

This Pearlmaster bracelet feels like a solid sheet of platinum on your wrist. It has a wall-like, redoubtable, fortified solidity to it. Yet it is amazingly flexible, smooth and supple at the same time. 

While it is technically a dress bracelet, and it’s five-link aesthetics clearly suggest that, it has a much more solid feel to it than any other dress bracelet. It even feels more solid than an Oyster bracelet. 

Even with such a vault-like composition, it remains gracefully curvaceous and well-proportioned like the rest of the watch. Each end-link curves into the next like waves moving along an ocean on a calm day. Everything about the bracelet is lush and rounded. Like the case, there is not a single hard angle. 

The Concealed Crownclasp

The clasp is a conventional snap-shut, which is both elegant and functional. It will never be susceptible to desk diving or the like.

As for adjustments, there are removable links, which can be fixed by screws. There is also a half-links for precise sizing. 

All in all, the Pearlmaster bracelet has everything you could ask for, sophistication, durability, uniqueness, and the highest level of comfortability. It wears so soft and it feels so strong. 


Turn the watch over and you will be greeted by a green sticker (which no longer exists on new Rolex watches) fluted-caseback that is hermetically screwed down with a special tool that allows only Rolex watchmakers to gain access. 

If you were to make it inside, you’d find a Rolex manufactured Caliber 3155 movement. 

It is a double quickset Day Date automatic winding, bi-directional (and quite silent) movement with a 48 hour power reserve beating at eight beats per second. The double quick set function allows you to rapidly change the day and date, with a hacking or stop seconds. 

Furthermore, it has a 5 position adjustment brigade overcoil hairspring for excelling timing in any situation. It also uses a full balanced bridge and free sprung index for excellent shock resistance. 

Finally, and it should go without saying, the movement has a COSC chronometer certification.

To sum it up, this means the Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 is perfectly water-resistant, incredibly accurate, and very tough. The movement has the same fundamental architecture as the peerlessly reliable calibre 3135 found in the Submariner


rolex day date masterpiece on the wrist

This stunning timepiece is certainly more pronounced and prominent than Day-Date 36mm models. With the gorgeous MOP dial, 50 radiating diamonds, high polish platinum, and the fact that the structure of the watch wears broad across the wrist, the Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 will never go unnoticed. 

Due to the size, you should probably not buy this watch if your wrist circumference is below 14cm. This watch will wear perfectly on a wrist of 16cm in circumference.

Make note, not only does it wear fairly large, but it is also heavy! After all, it’s solid platinum.

We really love this timepiece in that it is not just a formal timepiece. You can wear this watch dressed up or down on a casual outing…pending you don’t mind sporting a lavish look. The watch has the soul and body of a sports watch and the elegance and splendor of a dress watch. 

The final thing we’d like to note is just how comfortable this watch is, even with its heavy nature. Its curved formation allows it to flow across the wrist with a plush, snug and pleasant feeling. And the platinum allows the watch to be incredibly durable and scratch-resistant, which is comfort for the mind as you don’t need to worry about wear and tear. 

If you want a watch that is equally opulent and sophisticated as it is cool and robust, the Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 will satisfy your every desire. 


This Rolex Day-Date Pearlmaster Masterpiece is pre-owned and in perfect condition. It comes with its original box and paperwork. We are selling it at the very competitive price of $56,995. This is more than a watch, it is an investment on your wrist. 


You can purchase the Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece 18946 at Diamonds By Raymond Lee in Boca Raton or via online store.

Buy the Rolex Day-Date Platinum MOP Pearlmaster Masterpiece reference 18946 here.

Curbside pick up and same-day shipping available.

Overall, the Rolex Day-Date Masterpiece Pearlmaster MOP dial reference 18946 is such a spectacular piece. It has the instantly recognizable flair and undeniable toughness of Rolex, with the grace and rarity of Patek Philippe. It is truly a special and uncommon watch from one of the greatest brands in watchmaking. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.


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