The date: January 13, 2012. The place: Glashütte, Germany, where one of my best friends had arranged for the two of us to visit A. Lange & Söhne. The vision: my friend extended his arm from the sleeve of his shirt, and what I saw left me reeling – my first view of the Lange Datograph Perpetual in white gold. I was confident from that very moment that this was a watch for me; but pursuit of the piece took four long years.
Now, please don’t take this title the wrong way: this list is not definitive. Which is why it is not entitled “The 5 Most Innovative Wristwatches Ever Made.” It is specifically entitled “5 Of The Most Innovative Wristwatches Ever Made” because there are certainly more of them out there (this list could have encompassed 15, or even 20!) and there are surely differing opinions. For me, these five timepieces largely encompass comprehensive parts of what is great about the modern world of wristwatches.
“Sex on a stick.” That was only one of the juicy thoughts that ran through my head as I spied the these two new releases by A. Lange & Söhne at the 2016 edition of SIHH. The signature low-key style that this brand is known for in this case means that the tourbillons are not visible from the front, either. Please meet the two perpetual calendar tourbillons that really mean grailworthy business.
It’s already been six consecutive years that I’ve had the delightful experience of going through SIHH week with several of my closest friends. Our closing discussions centered around four questions, which were focused more tightly on SIHH itself this year due to the inclusion of nine independent watchmakers: what watch did you think was best of show at SIHH? What was the worst watch of the show? What watch displayed at the show would you buy if money were no object? What watch did you see on display that would you buy with your own money?
Recently, GaryG presented his take on the Kari Voutilainen Masterpiece 8 while Elizabeth wrote about the A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk Minute Repeater.
Here Gary, Elizabeth, and Ian compare and discuss six areas of these two rare and very technical timepieces: design, innovation, operation, finishing, sound, and overall impression.
And there’s a video so you can see and hear both decimal repeaters to make your own comparison.
Using the Zeitwerk as the model to house A. Lange & Söhne’s first repeating wristwatch, the appropriately named Zeitwerk Minute Repeater, which just happens to be a decimal repeater, is nothing short of genius. This repeating wristwatch is not intended to be a traditional classic. But it is intended to rock the collector’s world with its fireworks of technical prowess and perfect finishing. We analyze this nearly $470,000 masterpiece according to six main criteria: design, innovation, operation, finishing, sound, and overall impression.
It will come as no surprise to anyone who has read my pieces in the past that I like a good jump hour mechanism. Actually, I love a good jump hour mechanism. There is just something about that instantaneous change driven entirely by mechanical means that fascinates me. And yet not all “digital” watches require the use of jump hours and minutes; some don’t even use a jump at all yet still read digitally. So today I want to break down a list of my seven (plus change) favorite “digital” watches.
With all of the unrest in the world today, “giving back” has become an important thing for anyone living comfortably. And while lots of luxury brands, including watch brands, do give back in one way or another, I’d like to single out a few individuals in the world of high-end timekeeping that have gone the extra mile toward helping humanity in 2015 crises.
Over the last 12 months we have published an unusually high number of articles about drummers, the timekeepers in nearly every musical band or group. Actually, it kind of stands to reason that drummers would particularly like watches – even if they can’t (or shouldn’t!) wear them while playing – as both fields have extreme time-keeping functionality.
The Watchstars awards jury comprises a very large panel of international writers and journalists. It is the massive size of this jury that often produces interesting results. The 2015/2016 edition of Watchstars just came to a close, and the winners in five categories were announced with four brands taking honors. Find out more here!