Our panel members choose their winners in the Chronograph category of the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie between the Louis Moinet Memoris Red Eclipse, Ulysse Nardin’s Marine Chronograph Annual Calendar, Montblanc’s 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter Limited Edition, the Chopard Mille Miglia 2016 XL Race Edition, Zenith’s El Primero 36’000 VPH, and the Hublot Big Bang Unico Sapphire.
In 2013, Louis Moinet took the watch world by surprise when the brand revealed that its historical namesake was in fact the inventor of the chronograph.
The Compteur de Tierces pocket watch by Louis Moinet dating back to 1816 was proof positive.
And now in 2016, Louis Moinet commemorates the bicentennial of the first chronograph with a series of commemorative pieces: this Memoris 200th Anniversary “chronograph-watch” edition is the first, and it displays a large number of really interesting details.
A watch for me isn’t just a portable three-dimensional sculpture or piece of kinetic art, it is first − if not foremost − an instrument for telling the time. Like you, I’ve excitedly followed the animated discourse and heated debate after the results of the 2015 Chronometry Competition were announced. Oh, you missed that? Me too.
Welcome to the 2015 edition of Quill & Pad’s early Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) predictions in which we pick our favorites and explain why. The six pre-selected finalists in the Chronograph category are: Louis Moinet Memoris, Montblanc Heritage Chronométrie ExoTourbillon Minute Chronograph Vasco da Gama, Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Laptimer Michael Schumacher, Longines Column-Wheel Single Push-Piece Chronograph, Piaget Altiplano Chrono, and the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 18 Chronograph.
The Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève (GPHG) has just published the list of 2015’s pre-selected watches in the run-up to the big red carpet event in Geneva on October 29. The pre-selected watches will go on a world tour that includes stops in Hong Kong, Seoul, Dubai, Geneva, and London in October and November. But enough preamble, let’s have a look at the watches that are now in serious contention to take home big prizes this year.
International timing competitions used to be the Formula 1 of watchmaking, and the watchmakers who prepared the high-precision (pocket) watches were treated like Formula 1 drivers. And that shouldn’t be surprising because until recently, the primary raison d’être of a timepiece was to tell the time. To tell THE time, not the approximate time. An error of 30 seconds day isn’t much . . . until you miss your train by 10 seconds.
The new Louis Moinet Memoris places emphasis on the chronograph function rather than the time-telling displays. CEO and creative director Jean-Marie Schaller has an interesting viewpoint: not to see the chronograph as a complication here, but rather as the primary function: he says it is a “watch chronograph” rather than a “watch.”
The Louis Moinet compteur de tierces is one of the most remarkable finds in horological history in an extremely long time: it was the very first chronograph ever made, though no one knew this until recently. Get the details here!