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September 2016

SIHH 2017: MB&F HM8 Can-Am

This the new MB&F HM8 Can-Am, with a design that correlates with Maximilian Büsser’s love of Can-Am race cars from the 1960s and 1970s. Specifically, the polished roll bars link the HM8 to Can-Am supercars. According to MB&F, “At first glance it may appear that the sapphire crystal covering the HM8 Engine is circular and positioned above the battle-axe rotor, but it’s not. The complete top of the case is one piece of sapphire crystal with sections of the crystal metallized to create a bluish border. That crystal, combined with the polished roll bars on each side, the oil sumps underneath, and the time displays created by optical prisms highlight HM8’s unrestricted horological creativity.” The roll bars are in grade 5 titanium, milled from a solid block of titanium Ti-6Al-4V, a blend of pure titanium with 6% aluminum and 4%

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SIHH 2017: Patrimony Moon Phase Retrograde Date and Traditionelle Minute Repeater Tourbillon

Ahead of SIHH, which takes place January 2017, Vacheron Constantin has previewed two new timepieces: the Patrimony Moon Phase Retrograde Date and Traditionnelle Minute Repeater Tourbillon. The Patrimony Moon Phase Retrograde Date is presented in a case measuring 42.5 mm x 9.7 mm, with a silver opaline dial, in either white or pink gold. It features hours, minutes, retrograde date, precision moon phase (one correction every 122 years), and age of the moon. Visible through the exhibition caseback automatic caliber 2460 R31L which beats at 4Hz (28,800 vph), has 275 components, 27 jewels, and a 40-hour power reserve. The retail price is $39,900. The Traditionelle Minute Repeater Tourbillon comes in a case measuring 44 mm x 12.2 mm, in either platinum with a hand-guilloché silvered opaline or slate-colored dial, or pink gold with a hand-guilloché silvered opaline dial. The watch

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Jason Pitsch

The infamous TAG Heuer caliber CH80 returns

Jason Pitsch

TAG Heuer’s second chronograph movement, an in-house designed integrated column-wheel chrono with a premium vertical-clutch system, known as caliber 1969, was originally announced in November 2013. Following that, the so-called caliber “1969” movement debuted inside the Carrera CH80 Chronograph, at Baselworld 2014, with the new name caliber “CH80,” and with intentions of being delivered to retailers later that year. Further, during the annual Baselworld trade show, TAG Heuer explicitly told us that the Carrera CH80 Chronograph was available for sale at the wholesale level. And that they were taking orders from retailers during the show with deliveries tentatively expected to begin by Fall 2014. This is the typical procedure for most watch brands: announce at Baselworld or SIHH watch shows during Q1/Q2, and deliver those new timepieces Q3/Q4, the same year. However, that never happened. Instead, the then LVMH Watch

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Jason Pitsch

Richard Lange “Pour le Mérite” in white gold with black dial

Jason Pitsch

The “Pour le Mérite” collection, first introduced in 1994, consists of four models – including the Richard Lange Tourbillon “Pour le Mérite” which we went hands-on with during its launch in Dresden in 2010 – all of which feature a fusee-and-chain transmission designed to improve rate accuracy through constant torque delivery. The most basic model in the collection simply called the Richard Lange “Pour le Mérite,” displays just the time: hours, minutes, and small seconds. Yet, incredibly, the movement consists of 915 parts. For a time only watch, this is likely a record. Not that companies are striving to use more parts. The primary goal here is, of course, rate accuracy, and the 636 component fusee-and-chain is part of that equation. And while I wish Lange would provide the average rate and amplitude numbers, based on past talks with their

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Jason Pitsch

Dietrich OT-1 Carbon Luminescent

Jason Pitsch

Emmanuel Dietrich, a French-born, École Boulle design school graduate, with 20 years of experience in product design launched his eponymous watch company, just a few years ago. Starting with the OT-1 collection, which is short for “Organic Time,” followed by the OT-2 and OT-3 variants. All of the Organic Time watches have the same case dimensions, movement, and dial. This is clearly a mono watch business model, which focuses on multiple variations of the same watch. However, it is worth noting that while other companies, such as SevenFriday, are using a similar business model, the Dietrich watches are, arguably, much more interesting. From the unique design of the case and lugs, to the signature star-shaped wheel which continuously rotates every 60-seconds, to the 24-hour indication, to the open dial design that offers a view of the escapement on the dial

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Jason Pitsch

Ten facts about Patek Philippe Minute Repeaters

Jason Pitsch

The name “Patek Philippe” is synonymous with minute repeaters. And while the company does not provide yearly production numbers, it is safe to say the number is very low. The demand for Patek Philippe minute repeaters far exceeds the supply. And so naturally, they are highly coveted amongst the world’s elite collectors, resulting in high prices at auction, in the rare instance that someone actually decides to sell one. 1- In Sept 1839, Patek Philippe made their first quarter repeater, which sold for 450 CHF. 2- The world’s first self-winding minute repeater wristwatch (Ref. 3979) was produced by Patek Philippe in 1989. 3- Patek Philippe minute repeaters are produced in both the Vallée de Joux and Geneva factories. 4- Patek Philippe gongs are entirely hand made. There are 21 classes which are necessary to better distinguish between high and low

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Jason Pitsch

H. Moser & Cie Endeavour Perpetual Calendar Hands-On

Jason Pitsch

Schaffhausen-based watchmaker, H. Moser & Cie, is a company that is infamous for producing a watch that looks very similar to an Apple Watch, as well as for their CEO boldly writing an open letter to the President of the Swiss National Bank immediately following the rate policy change in January 2015, which negatively affected virtually all Swiss watch companies. Moser, as they are often referred to as, is also well known for their minimalist perpetual calendar wristwatches, powered by in-house manufactured movements. In fact, their perpetual calendar won the Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix “Complicated Watch” prize in 2006. The Endeavour Perpetual Calendar is one of the core timepiece collections at H. Moser & Cie and comes in 10 different variations. The version shown features a 40.8 mm x 11.1 mm polished rose gold case, with a silver-plated Argenté sunburst

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Jason Pitsch

Apple Watch Series 2

Jason Pitsch

Like clockwork, almost exactly two years from the launch of the original Apple Watch – on September 7th, 2016 – Apple announced their second generation smartwatch/wearable: the Apple Watch Series 2. Now featuring water resistance down to 50 meters, built-in GPS, a 2X brighter display, faster dual-core processors, and the latest watchOS 3 – the new Series 2 is available starting today in most markets. The Apple Watch Hermès will be available later this month and the Apple Nike Watch+ will be available in October. Apple Watch Edition $1249 The new S2 chip with dual-core processor makes the Apple Watch up to 50 percent faster, along with a new GPU that delivers up to 2X better graphics performance. The screen is brighter too, at 1,000 nits, it is twice as bright, and according to Apple, it is the brightest display

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Jason Pitsch

Vacheron Constantin Traditionnelle Chronograph Perpetual Calendar

Jason Pitsch

Vacheron Constantin recently announced a new version of their Traditionnelle Chronograph Perpetual Calendar that is an evolution of the existing 1141QP powered models. The biggest changes being a new slate-gray colored dial and a new movement. While the dial now comes in a darker gray color. The case has stayed the same – measuring 43 mm x 12.94 mm – and is in platinum with a stepped bezel, exhibition caseback, and water-resistance rating of 30 meters. What has changed under the dial, is an evolution of caliber 1141QP. The new 114QP reference reflects a movement that is faster at 3Hz, thinner by .03 mm, and that now comes with a Geneva Seal (which is an aesthetic and performance criteria). Caliber 1142 QP runs a 21,600 vph, and consists of 324 components, 21 of which are jewels. The manual wind movement

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Introducing the Longines Heritage Military

Saint-Iimer, Switzerland-based watchmaker Longines introduces the Heritage Military, inspired by the design of a 1918 timepiece from the company’s museum. As you can see, the dial has the same large Arabic numeral hour markers, a similar small seconds display at 6 o’clock; and railroad tracks for minutes and seconds, respectively. The new watch differs in that the case has a modern – and arguably better looking – case. Also, while the hands work well with the new design, its predecessor has open-tipped “Breguet”-style hands. And, not surprisingly, the new hands are luminescent, whereas the original’s hands were not. Longines Military watch from 1918 The case measures 44 mm in diameter and is crafted from stainless steel. A satin-brushing technique was used to finish the entire case, although the fluted-crown has been polished. Notably, the dial has a matte black surface,

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