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Audemars Piguet Previews Three New Women’s Millenary Watches

The women’s version of one of the most iconic men’s collections of all time, the Audemars Piguet Millenary certainly has a lot to offer. All dressed up in diamonds, enamel, marquetry, engraving, and other materials, the Royal Oak is the first luxury sports watch for the fairer sex. The Millenary, by way of differentiation, is the opposite of sporty. It has become emblematic for watchmaking’s decorative arts, while at the same time exuding a technical flair with its partially openwork dial.

At the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) next month, Audemars Piguet has announced the launch of three new models in the Millenary lineup. Two all-gold versions set with diamonds and a version with a “frosted gold” finish will come out just in time for the holiday season. The 18-karat white- or pink-gold versions have the same allure of fine jewelry, with diamonds set into the lugs and bezel with a handcrafted bracelet that can be used on its own. 

A variation on the Milanese mesh style sees the bracelet braded from gold threads in a right-over-left pattern rather than in the same direction, just like a traditional Milanese bracelet is made. The result is a flexible piece of jewelry that comfortably hugs the wrist. The adjustable links can be removed or added in 5-mm sections for an even closer fit. The cases on the new models are scaled down to 39.5 mm, which makes them even more wearable.

The third new Millenary is characterized by a technique from the jeweler’s bench: a signature hammered finish that Audemars Piguet calls frosted gold. It is achieved by using a gold-hammering technique known as the Florentine method that results in tiny indentations giving the surface a shimmering sparkle, like frost on a windowpane. 

Pricing for all three models will be made available in mid-January of next year.

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The New MB&F LM Split

The newest creation from the MB&F ‘Legacy Machine’ line is s a masterstroke of horological compartmentalization and this is not an exaggeration. Its price is just as head-turning as its revolutionary design and bespoke craftsmanship. The MB&F LM Split Escapement retails for $79,000, but is worth every dollar.

It made its debut in 2011 and since then the Legacy Machine range has perfected its complexity without deviating from its core characteristics: manual winding, traditional finishing, round case, huge domed crystal, and a 2.5 Hz balance suspended by a wishbone-shaped cock. The Split Escapement is in a class of its own compared to the last Legacy Machine (the Perpetual).

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There is something unique in the Stephen McDonnell–designed movement. Unlike its predecessors, the Perpetual has chosen to extend right through the movement, and fix the escapement to the back. This configuration was unique for a wristwatch, and it worked well on either side of the watch.

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Now, for the design of the LM Split Escapement, MB&F has worked once again with McDonnell with the intent to simplify and distil this concept into a still purer form. The balance staff extends a full 11.78 mm from the balance wheel to the impulse jewel. This receives its impulse from a lever and escape wheel on the back of the movement. Unlike the Perpetual, the hand-burnished dial of the Split Escapement has enough space to display its timekeeping, date, and 72-hour power-reserve dials. The burnish brush treatment of the dial reflects this space by delivering “a wider, more diffuse frosted finish” than more commonly used in order “to accommodate the larger area.”

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This is what makes the Split Escapement a horological masterpiece. The watch is a juxtaposition of isolation and space. These components are separated into categories: The regulation and timekeeping can be found on the front, and the power, transmission, and distribution are placed on the back. The unique layout of the movement complements the generous space beneath its soaring sapphire firmament, allowing for these categories to occupy large areas of their own real estate.

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Roger Dubuis and Lamborghini team up on Excalibur Aventador S watches

The new partnership between Lamborghini Squadra Corse’s team and renowned designer Roger Dubuis is coming at the right time. The two brands have their creative vision perfectly aligned in terms of personality, design language, and clientele, so naturally the result of their collaboration will appeal to a large number of wealthy buyers.

Taking things further, they have developed something that the horology world does not see every day. The new Roger Dubuis Excalibur Aventador S Strap Details is a superior watch whose signature movement’s layout draws inspiration from the engine bay of the Aventador S. Thanks to close work with Lamborghini’s design team has allowed the artisans to capture this correctly.

Aventador S watch

There will be two models of the new watch – each released in a limited addition, making them more exclusive than the iconic car that inspired them. In a nod to Lamborghini’s superior technical composition, Roger Dubuis used Lamborghini’s award-winning carbon composite known as C-SMC carbon to create a thin “cover plate” detail over the watch’s power reserve indication. The automotive composite was of significant interest the brand’s design team who usually relies on Swiss suppliers for their materials.

Aventador S watch

All pieces both feature multilayer carbon cases, and are powered by an all-new double balance hand-wound caliber RD103SQ, which runs at 4Hz and offers a power reserve of 40-hours. The new caliber can display both hours and minutes, power reserve, and a dead-beat seconds indication. This is a first in the brand’s recent history. Poinçon de Genève finishing completes the composition.

Aventador S watch

There are minute differences between the two new Aventador S models; EX613 with yellow accents will be limited to 88 pieces with a retail price of $185,000, whereas the EX624—with orange accents and aforementioned carbon cover plate—will be limited to only 8 pieces priced at $205,000 each.

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The Jaeger-LeCoultre Deep Sea Watch

Jaeger-LeCoultre Deep Sea Chronograph Cermet Watch is a timepiece that combines the brand’s well-known craftsmanship and aesthetics of perpetual calendar with a classic design. The watch represents one of the three pillars that are the strengths of Jaeger-LeCoultre as a watch-making brand. The new Cermet version of the Deep Sea Chronograph brings to life a watch made of an alloy material that is part ceramic and part metal with incomparable properties of lightness, resistance, and stability.

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Much lighter and slimmer than its predecessor, the Deep Sea Chronograph has a matte finish, a modern look with the retro-styling. As a chronograph, it has water resistance of up to 100 meters. Its case is sleek and modern, which is a nice change for a watch of such calibre. The dial is nicely legible, and offers an attractive minimalist design that is typical of popular retro-style dials.

Jaeger-LeCoultre will produce two dial variations of the Deep Sea Chronograph Cermet. There will be the standard Ref. 208A570 with the white colored luminant, and the Ref. 208A57J that has a darker colored lume. This latter model is called the Deep Sea Chronograph Vintage Cermet. The Vintage model will only be available for purchase at Jaeger-LeCoultre mono-brand boutique stores. The starting price for both watches will be $18,000.

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Inside the Deep Sea Chronograph Cermet watches are in-house made caliber 758 automatic movements. The 758 is a sweet column-wheel based chronograph with of a 65 hour power reserve and a one-of-a-kind “chronograph function” indicator. The slim size of the Deep Sea Chronograph wears perfectly.  42mm is the best size for a watch like this, one puts just as much emphasis on performance as it does on aesthetics.  The Deep Sea Vintage Chronograph is all about looks and less about actual diving.

The JLC Deep Sea Chronograph boasts is a truly capable sport watch with a robust automatic chronograph movement, three registers, and rotating bezel.

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Vintage Watches – The Omega Edition

Wealthy connoisseurs have always had a thing for vintage Omega watches, which are a status symbol in the horological world.

As the iconic watch brand celebrates its 60th anniversary and the reissue of the Railmaster, Omega’s vintage pieces are seeing further increases in value and interest. Three vintage Omegas have now been reissued in varying forms: the Railmaster, the “Big Blue” and the Speedmaster.

The Omega Seamaster 120 Big Blue is Omega’s latest iteration of the chunky diver chronograph from 1972. The Big Blue was one of the first chronographs capable of handling a 120M dive. It has a crystal and dial appear effectively mint, with faint and even aging present on its indices and hands. Its 100 mesh bracelet is not original to the piece, but that shouldn’t impact its sale price significantly given its condition.

Omega Seamaster 120 Big Blue

The Omega Railmaster was launched the same year as the Speedmaster, but never garnered nearly as much attention as its moon-bound brother. Similar to the Rolex Milgauss, the Railmaster was specifically designed for railway employs, although it quickly gained popularity with engineers and scientists whose daily tasks involved significant exposure to magnetic fields. The vintage charm of this piece is clearly visible with its 38mm width and pristine condition.

Omega Railmaster

The 1969 Omega Speedmaster Professional is easier to find in antique houses than the previous two models, but earlier references like the pre-moon 145.012 are a real gem. The same reference worn on the surface of the moon by Buzz Aldrin himself has gained somewhat of a cult symbol. The model, complete with a flat-link bracelet, is a solid example of the ultimate icon from Omega.

1969 Omega Speedmaster Professional

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2017′s Best Double Tourbillon Watches

Quite a few luxury watch brands turned heads at Geneva this year. The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) horology exhibition is an event every wealthy gentleman has marked in his calendar for a chance to pinpoint his next wrist toy.  Double tourbillons were particularly prominent at the exhibition and a few models stood out from the sea of luxury and exquisite craftsmanship.

Jaeger-LeCoultre moved into a new and daring direction with the Geophysic Tourbillon Universal Time. A platinum watch is hardly understated, but it’s a peculiar move from a brand known so well for its bling. It has completely stripped it down to a classic-looking dial, which hides a complicated tourbillon movement within a tourbillon.

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Another strong statement comes from Audemars Piguet in the form of their Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar. The Maison debuted a monochrome perpetual calendar in the watch world’s material of the moment: ceramic. No gold. No platinum. No diamonds. Just one minimalistic case of the world’s most fragile material with a price available on request.

Audemars Piguet

IWC Da Vinci Tourbillon Rétrograde Chronograph is the latest tourbillon model from the brand and it’s a step up from its predecessor. Its gold-cased design lets wearers precisely set the time to the very second. For a price of about $110,000 the buyer receives a balanced combination of the 3 complications on the clean, silver plated dial with applied Arabic numerals.

IWC Da Vinci

Panerai developed the Panerai LAB-ID Luminor 1950 Carbotech 3 Days 49mm in search of lightness and architectural austerity. The used carbotech material has been utilized a high point. This makes the latest LAB-ID Luminor the brand’s most functional dive watch yet. Plus, it features a dial made from the world’s ‘blackest black’.

Panerai LAB-ID Luminor

The Vacheron Constantin Les Cabinotier Celestial Astronominal Grand Complication 3600 is a novelty option that will surely impress. With an eye-watering price tag, the Les Cabinotier offers a sunrise and sunset complication; moonphase; and a Zodiac, equinox and solstice display – all housed in a white gold case.

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Patek Philippe Reference 5531R

Special Edition – The Patek Philippe Reference 5531R World Time Minute Repeater

Swiss master watchmaker Patek Philippe held its ‘The Art Of Watches Grand Exhibition’ in New York. The Maison marked the momentous occasion with the launch of very special, limited edition timepieces. The Patek Philippe Ref. 5531R World Time Minute Repeater New York 2017 Special Edition watch stood out with its unique design and amazing new grand complication that melodiously chimes the time for any location in the world. This one-of-a-kind minute repeater introduces significant changes to Patek Philippe’s traditional watchmaking process.

For the first time in the watchmaking world, Patek Philippe Ref. 5531 World Time Minute Repeater brings the rare combination of minute repeater and world time complications together in a single case. The functional mechanical connection between the repeater and the world time complication allows it to chime the local time anywhere in the world.

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The new model comes in two versions, each in a limited series of just five pieces. Retailing price for the all-new grand complication watch is $561,341.

The biggest difference between a traditional repeater and the reference 5531R is that the new model doesn’t have the hour snail isn’t indexed once per hour by the minute snail; instead it’s driven continuously by the time zone wheel of the world time mechanism. This allows it to accurately reflect local rather than home time.

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Another interesting alteration to the traditional mechanism, is an additional system that ensures that at the end of each hour, the watch will chime the time that the hands show at the end of the strike. The unique design means that instead of hearing five hour strikes, three quarter strikes, and 14 minute strikes as would be the case in a normal repeater, the wearer will instead hear only six hour strikes, which end exactly as the hands reach 6:00.

The watch boasts extra safety features– for example when the strike is activated, the world time mechanism is blocked to prevent any damage that might occur if the owner attempts to adjust the world time mechanism during chiming.

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The Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle Watch

Corum‘s iconic Golden Bridge watch debuted in 1980 in its original barrel-shaped case. Last year, the Swiss watchmaker introduced a redesigned version in a more traditional round case. At this year’s Baselworld fair, Corum revealed another variation of its signature Golden Bridge, in a new, Art Deco-influenced rectangular case.

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The Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle, like its round-cased predecessor has been designed by Dino Modolo. It boasts an eye-catching baguette-shaped, linear-oriented, manual-winding movement, Caliber CO113. The movement is designed to be visible in the center of the open dial with a high level of engraving and finishes on its 18k gold bridges and plate. It is surrounded on both sides by 18k gold elements that represent six Roman numerals whose curved shapes and rivets resemble the intricate architecture of a bridge. The movement’s timekeeping functions are on full display. The spring barrel at 6 o’clock feeds energy to the escapement at 12 o’clock. Caliber CO113 has a frequency of 28,800 vph (4 Hz) and a power reserve of 40 hours.

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The curved rectangular case sports a grooved winding crown at the bottom – a hallmark feature of Corum’s Bridges collection. Both are made of 5N 18k rose gold and measure 29.5 mm by 42.2 mm. The baton-shaped hour and minute hands are rhodium-plated and faceted. Both the front and back of the watch are covered with nonreflective sapphire crystals. The watch is water-resistant to 30 meters. The strap is made of brown alligator leather with a triple-folding clasp made of rose gold. The price for the new Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle is $36,900.

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The Porsche Design Chronograph 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series

Porsche Design has unveiled it bet timepiece yet – the Chronograph 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series. It will accompany the new Porsche 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series – a powerful breathing performance car with a top speed of 330 km/h.

Porsche Design is the lifestyle brand synonymous with luxury clothing, eyewear, luggage and watches. Now, its new timepiece will coordinate with the 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series. The limited run of 500 cars will be offered by the famous Swabian car manufacturer later this year.

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A total of 500 chronographs will be manufactured to accompany the car and will be named the Porsche Design Chronograph 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series. Both the car and the watch can be further customized.

The new timepiece boasts the brand’s ‘first mechanical in-house movement’. The development of the movement, the calibre Werk 01.200, took over three years to complete. The chronograph features a flyback function, which is ideal for timing consecutive lap times or honing them to perfection.

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In keeping with Porsche’s reputation for lightweight performance cars, the movement’s barrel bridge is open-worked, which gives the chronograph a lightweight appearance. In addition to this, the adoption of this new design strategy allows the barrel bridge to reveal the flyback function and gear train.

The oscillating mass is affixed with a central locking nut, which bears the Porsche coat of arms – reminiscent of the appearance of a Porsche wheel rim. Would-be buyers can customize with gold accents on the rotor or, alternatively, a completely black ensemble.

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The carbon dial comes in regular Porsche colours, such as Golden Yellow Metallic, Carrara White, Agate Grey Metallic, Black, Graphite Blue Metallic and the iconic Guards Red. The timepiece is complemented by a titanium bracelet and two leather straps with titanium deployant buckles. The strap itself is made from the same leather and thread used for the seats of the 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series.

Porsche and Porsche Design will distribute the Chronograph 911 Turbo S Exclusive Series solely through Porsche Centres worldwide with a suggested retail price of $12,650 or €9,950.

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The new Visionnaire Chronograph from Faberge

Nearly a decade of work and five horologically significant patents went into the making of Fabergé’s latest creation – the exquisite calibre 6361, two of which have been specifically designed for the new chronograph movement of the Visionnaire Chronograph. It was designed in close collaboration with Agenhor, the Geneva-based movement specialist and master watchmaker Jean-Marc Wiederrecht.

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The calibre 6361 offers instant-start indications thanks to a system of snail cams, fixed to the chronograph wheels. Its immaculate precision is courtesy of the patented AgenClutch, a completely novel, lateral-friction clutch that combines the smooth engagement of the modern vertical clutch with the flatness of the traditional system.

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The rotor is visible under the sapphire crystal ring that forms the outermost part of the dial. As the rotor spins and winds the watch, the radial lines on its surface reflect the light, adding a constant dynamism and motion in keeping with a sports complication.

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Water resistant to 50 metres, the Visionnaire Chronograph is available in two equally striking versions: the more elegant and neutral rose-gold case with grey opaline dial or the bolder black DLC treated ceramic case with black dial. Introduced at the Baselworld 2017, prices for the two models are $39,500 and $34,500, respectively.