The Exceptionally Complicated Watches

The Exceptionally Complicated Watches

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Hiren Kumar Bose selects six complicated watches which debuted at Basel World 2019

ZENITH Defy Inventor

ZENITH Defy Inventor

Till recently the Defy collection which includes a single-piece oscillator that beats at an extremely high frequency of 18Hz or 129,600 vph, compared to the usual 4 Hz or 28,800 vph had limited numbers but now it will be produced in a run of several hundred pieces. The revolutionary single-piece oscillator replaces the traditional 30-piece standard regulating organ and is made of silicon. The 44mm case is made of lightweight titanium and the textured bezel is made of Aeronith, an aluminium-polymer composite that is three-times lighter than titanium. The dial is openworked to resemble a stylised propeller, with blades evoking the Zenith star.

BULGARI Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Carbon

BULGARI Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Carbon

This avatar of 42mm Octo Finissimo combines the world thinnest ultra-thin flying tourbillon with an innovative case material made of carbon CTP (Coal Tar Pitch). The movement, a technical marvel at only 1.95 mm thick, thanks partly to an innovative peripheral rotor. It is showcased in an openworked dial with black finishing, and can also be seen through a transparent caseback. The Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Carbon is the thinnest-ever automatic carbon watch and is limited to 50 pieces.

MB&F Legacy Machine FlyingT

MB&F Legacy Machine FlyingT

MB&F has finally created a timepiece dedicated exclusively to women. The Legacy Machine FlyingT is a three-dimensional creation, with a steeply cambered bezel and slender, bevelled lugs on a round case that is fully set with diamonds. The high, convex domed sapphire crystal hovers over a curved dial plate. An asymmetric opening frames a raised flying tourbillon escapement, the carriage of which is topped by a single large diamond. A dial of white or black lacquer with blued gold hands sits on a 50° tilt at the 7 o’clock position. The watch is set with either round-brilliant or baguette diamonds.

VOUTILAINEN 28 E wristwatch

VOUTILAINEN 28 E wristwatch

Made entirely in the Voutilainen workshops – including case, dial, movement and all finishing – the 39 mm Titanium case and crown watch with sapphire crystals front and back with anti-reflective treatment on front. The movement is unique, with a very large balance wheel and a balance spring that uses a typical Phillips overcoil on the exterior and the little-known Grossmann curve on the internal curve. There are two synchronized escapement wheels, which give a direct impulse to the balance through the impulse roller, a system that uses less energy and has greater stability than traditional lever escapements. The movement is finished by hand, and the dial is grand feu enamel over gold, with stylized Arabic numerals and large pomme-style hands.

SEIKO Astron GPS Solar 5X Caliber

SEIKO Astron GPS Solar 5X Caliber

A new Astron GPS Solar 5X series pays homage to the uniqueness of the first Quartz Astron of 50 years ago in both its design and in its technological advancement. Since its launch seven years ago, Astron GPS Solar has taken the art of electronic watchmaking to new heights. With its accuracy of one second every 100,000 years, its ability to connect to the GPS network using just the power of light and its automatic adjustment to every time zone on earth, Astron GPS Solar has found great favour with international travellers and lovers of high precision watchmaking alike. The Astron GPS Solar collection includes Chronograph, Dual-Time, World-Time and Big-Date versions and the 5X53 Dual-Time that powers this new series adds yet further breadth and refinement to this remarkable range. Caliber 5X connects up to twice a day to the GPS network to maintain its precision, it adjusts automatically to Daylight Saving Time and, when the wearer changes time zone, s/he simply pushes a button and the hands move faster than ever to the correct local time, thanks to the system that moves the hour, minute, and seconds hands independently. In addition, Caliber 5X even gives the wearer the ability to change the main time display instantly from home to local time and vice versa. The new collection comprises four creations, including one limited edition which has a black case and bracelet and a zirconia ceramic bezel whose fifty facets commemorate the anniversary of the Quartz Astron, as do the quartz crystal shaped hands and markers.

H. MOSER & CIE Endeavour Concept Minute Repeater Tourbillon

H. MOSER & CIE Endeavour Concept Minute Repeater Tourbillon

The 43mm watch highlights one of the most traditional watch complications and combines it with a magnificent flying tourbillon in a twirling waltz. The two shaped chimes and the minute repeater hammers shine through against the lacquered black dial, intertwining the one-minute flying tourbillon at 6 o’clock. To develop this marvel of ingenuity, H. Moser & Cie. drew on the expertise of MHC Manufactures Hautes Complications SA, a specialist in minute repeaters. Together, the two manufactures created a brand-new design, showcasing the beauty of the complication by positioning the chimes and the hammers on the dial side. This involved overcoming many technical challenges. In particular, the chimes (which are placed on one level to preserve the finesse of the piece) had to be curved so as not to interfere with the flying tourbillon and to respect H. Moser & Cie.’s main focus to keep the design understated. The one-minute flying tourbillon at 6 o’clock is certainly eye-catching. Visible behind a skeleton bridge, it is fitted to a ball bearing that improves the accuracy and chronometry. Resolutely contemporary and in line with modern times, the tourbillon appears to float weightlessly on the black lacquered dial stripped of both logo and indices.

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