If you have ever tried to tell the time by sound rather than sight, you will appreciate the minute repeater complication. HOT highlights a few exceptional ones.
The minute repeater complication is the masterpiece of precision engineering. Every year, watch brands come up with striking minute repeaters, setting and surpassing standards all the time. We look at the latest expressions of the sounds of time…
Greubel Forsey Grande Sonnerie by Greubel Forsey
This Grande Sonnerie has powerful acoustics. It is water resistant to 3 atm. It is ergonomically designed for optimum ease of use, while an exceptional repeater power reserve enables it to run for about twenty hours in “Grande Sonnerie” mode. The timepiece is equipped with a silent striking regulator and a Tourbillon 24 Secondes, all housed within the standard dimensions of a Greubel Forsey case. The most important elements and indications (such as the tourbillon, the cathedral gongs, the striking hammers, and the power reserve and mode indicators) have been incorporated with the greatest care to ensure architectural balance. This is no mean feat – the watch designers succeeded in housing the 935 parts comprising this timepiece and its exterior in a space measuring 43.5 mm in diameter and 16.13 mm high. It is truly Greubel Forsey’s most complex creation to date!
The Royal Oak Offshore Grande Complication by Audemars Piguet
This is a timepiece that has a very contemporary look. With a 44 mm-diameter, it looks grand as well! It is a titanium and ceramic watch teamed with a rubber strap and features powerful, generous lines. The subtle characteristics of its simple yet complex geometrical shapes, play around with the viewer’s eyes! In a stroke of watchmaking ingenuity, it unites three complications: the supremely refined minute repeater, split-second chronograph and perpetual calendar complications. A classical work of art, interpreted in the most modern way! This contemporary horological work of art remains a creation made individually and exclusively to order by a single artisan who will devote over 700 hours of patient craftsmanship to every single watch.
Triple Complication Ref. 5208P by Patek Philippe
This self-winding Grand Complication wristwatch has a minute repeater, monopusher chronograph, instantaneous perpetual calendar with apertures, and moon phases. It is yet another accomplishment that underscores the leadership of the Geneva-based workshops in the complicated watch segment. All these complications get with them challenging degrees of difficulty. However, the brand has stood up to these with peerless perfection. Another feat- it is the first true Grand Complication that integrates silicon-derived Silinvar components: the revolutionary Pulsomax escapement and the Spiromax balance spring. As such, it is an impressive example of how tradition and innovation interact under one roof at Patek Philippe.
Les Cabinotiers Symphonia Grande Sonnerie 1860 by Vacheron Constantin
We are excited to see the brand’s first ever grande sonnerie wristwatch! The watch embodies a two-fold technical prowess: creating a supreme complication that only a handful of virtuoso watchmakers in the world are capable of mastering, while making it both simple and secure to use for its owner. While the mechanical virtuosity of the supreme complication is very noteworthy, the sophisticated simplicity and elegance of the look is also absolutely outstanding! A magnificent example of how Vacheron Constantin expresses extreme complexity through the art of simplicity.
Ultra-thin minute repeater by Piaget
As they say…you can never be too rich or too thin! Piaget has asserted itself in the world of ultra-thin calibres. In 2013, the Manufacture introduced a master stroke, but this time of a musical nature- the Calibre 1290P. Already the world’s thinnest automatic minute repeater watch (4.8 mm), this model also features a cushion shape that further increased the difficulties involved in its development. Despite its extreme slenderness, this movement stands out in terms of its exceptional sound performances.
The minute repeater complication is the oldest and most traditional of watch complications. Devising a minute repeater is a painstaking process that calls for complex skills and a lot of ingenuity. But, the end product is definitely worth it!
Read More: What is minute repeater?