The countdown is about to begin...

The general feel of the fair is better than last year but with with an emphasis on caution. The Tourbillon is still present but at least it has been relayed to a second or even third line. That is the next best thing next to complete normalization of this complication. Don't get me wrong, I have nothing against the Tourbillon, I just believe that they belong in pocket watches (where they should have never left) or at least brands that are built around that complication. Brands such as Greubel Forsey, Richard Mille or Breguet since it was the original inventor. I have no interest in Tourbillons inside Panerai, Jaeger, AP, Patek, Omega, BlancPain, IWC or Lange. I just feel that these have much more to offer when they do "other" things. Well, interestingly this year is the first since long where the Tourbillon is not the center of attention in all stands. Finally... Now the only cancer in the industry are the Limited Editions.

As to inovation Jaeger takes first place this time in detriment of AP. Panerai take first place when it comes to products that make sense and will be actually selling well. Very smart lineup from their side and contrary to las year the focus was much more on the Radiomir. Thanks for that. Vacheron seems to get its head out of the sand and is aiming straight at Patek with several interesting Patrimonies. IWC, well, not as awful as last year but nothing to loose sleep about. Lange introduced a very cool variation of the "Zeitwerk" with Luminova. Richard Mille and Greubel Forsey are part of the game. About time. AP plays it safe with the "Grand Prix" and introduces two pieces that are not new as far as movements are concerned but are holes that needed to be filled in the Jules Audemars and Royal Oak collections. Ralph Lauren... they are back again. Still don't know why. Montblanc has still the intention to make nice and expensive watches that feel like merchandising. Where and to whom do they sell this stuff? I wish they stuck to pens and gave back Minerva's corporate identity. Cartier surprised me with one piece I would actually consider. Stop, it must be the long hours in a closed hangar! GP is surprisingly not bankrupt yet and still present. Piaget is attempting to recuperate all the lost credit since they gave up on European markets since the 70s'. It is going to take them a while as well as a lot of money. Word of advice; MIKA is not the best image for getting serious collectors back. I still can't figure out Parmigiani. I have no clue as to why Van Cleef, Dunhill and Baume are doing there. Ahhh... and Ferrari has introduced a super stealth model... wait, forgot they where gone. I think I said this would happen in a post I made last year. (I remember getting slammed for predicting that...)

Well, I will start by focusing on the watches that caught my attention. I will try to be as brief as possible. The last post will be dedicated to the watch that in my opinion has been this years star at the show... Wait and see.


Velociphile said...

Hi D, Always love the rambling reportage you give from these events. I can see you shaking your head. Hee hee. V

Jos. said...

As always I largely agree with you, Dario. I too had a growing antipathy against the tourbiyawn, as I've seen it called by like minded spirits. And I still have, where it comes to the lower and middle end of the tourbillon market.

But the outcome of the Chronometry competition has changed my mind towards the more sincere tourbillon makers, the ones that have the know how and technical wherewithal to prove that tourbillons can achieve what they were invented for: to drive the ultimate high-precision mechanical movements.

The fact that JLC has won the competition with first AND second place for two of their tourbillon watches more than justifies their efforts in this area. So I'd include them in your little list of GF, RM and Breguet.

In fact, believer as I am in the rhetorical power of lists of three, I'd drop Breguet off the list. Yes they are the original inventor but that was more than two centuries ago and their recent efforts in this area are meager at best.

All the best,

KronosClub said...


Completely agree with all your appreciation's.

The Master Tourbillon is only an exception that confirms the rule. I deliberately excluded it although it was very well on my mind when I wrote this. My reason for this is that the Chronometry competition is not a "Tourbillon Chronometry" competition. The fact that the Master-T won is great and the tourbillon surely helped but it is not only because of that. The Master-T won because it is a great piece of time keeping. Do not forget that there is a next year and it could happen (really hope) that the next winner is NOT a Tourbillon. I believe that there might be several non-Tourbillons out there that could give most a good run for their money if not beat them. There are some watches that I would have loved to see there. The double-hairspring by H. Moser for instance... (Next year you can also expect the 10hz. movement by L.U.C. on the list by the way.)

Regarding Breguet, you are right again. However, I am a romantic and still have hopes that the will... well, you know. For now, yes, Breguet does not deserve to be on the list for merits yet historically it is a heavy burden to carry.

I would love to include JLC in the list yet I see the guys on this list as very "specialized" or "centered" on the tourbillon. Jaeger just do EVERYTHING. Greubel have taken the traditional Tourbillon to the next level and so have RM (R&P). For me, JLC is almost in a class of its own. In terms of collection range, it's just brutal compared to others. I see the "Master-T" more as a performance machine rather than a classic Tourbillon. In any case I also missed the Extreme Lab 1... I wonder how it would have done against the Master-T.