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Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways


Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases


Nobody would blame you if the mention of Hublot immediately elicits images of the Big Bang or, to a lesser degree, the Classic Fusion lines of watches. However, less well-known due to limited models and production numbers, there’s also the Tonneau-shaped Spirit of Big Bang collection. Stemming from a challenge to Jean-Claude Biver to create a Hublot watch inspired by Richard Mille was the Masterpiece line that in turn gave birth to the Spirit of Big Bang watches. One thing we wish to see more of in 2017 is more bright colors in watches, and we are glad Hublot is delivering. Mr. Biver’s sense of humor and irony is in play with the Hublot Spirit of Big Bang All Black watches. Despite the “All Black” name, these pieces come in four bright colorways of yellow, orange, red, and green.

Say what you will about color choices here, but it’s evident that anyone with a legibility preoccupation will be satisfied. The colors make it easy to read the dial and check the time, which is a pragmatic prerequisite for an actual day-to-day wear – if you can pull something like this off stylistically. Hublot’s “all black” tradition isn’t betrayed since you can see that, along with the case, various parts of the movement are also in black as the backdrop to the dial. It looks like a fun, well-thought-out line that shows that Hublot can create top-notch movements and cases without taking themselves too seriously.


Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases



Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases


The micro-blasted black ceramic case of the Hublot Spirit of Big Bang All Black is 45mm in diameter and serves as the perfect canvas for the new color choices. Everything just pops more with a black case and the all-black concept is tied together with a micro-blasted titanium crown, H-shaped screws, and push pieces with black rubber inserts. This aggressive evolution of the tonneau-shaped series is further complemented by the dial design.


Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases



Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases


All of the available versions feature colorized hands, indexes, and accents surrounding the date window. It’s a design approach that obviously serves as the centerpiece for this version and it’s all laid out over a beautifully contrasted, skeletonized dial. With so much going on visually, the layout is actually quite basic with a seconds counter at 9 o’clock, minutes counter at 3 o’clock, and a small hours counter at 6 o’clock. The main hands are big, bold, and varnished in the matching color as well. Naturally, Hublot also opted for a sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating to cut out any visual distortions. Again, the legibility here looks great, and I’d love to see how the pieces look when we get to go hands-on with them.


Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases



Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases


The movement powering the Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black watch is the HUB4700 automatic skeleton chronograph. It’s a fully “Hublot-ized” Zenith El Primero base operating at 5 Hz (36,000bph) with 50 hours of power reserve. No shots of it yet, but it’s also visible through an anti-reflective sapphire case-back that should show off all the crafty movement finishing Hublot is known for. Aside from that, each version comes with a black rubber strap and an alligator leather strap with a black PVD folding buckle matching the selected colorway.


Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases



Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases



Hublot Spirit Of Big Bang All Black Watch In Four Colorways Watch Releases


Much can be said about Hublot, both positive and negative. What can’t be said is that the brand is ever satisfied or complacent. They also aren’t afraid to take risks that may seem too “loud” in an industry that can sometimes be frustratingly conservative, making every minor update blown out of proportion. The Hublot Spirit of Big Bang All Black watches in these four colorways represent a cohesive line that recognizes Hublot’s brand perception, finishes, and movement quality are solid enough to throw a few cans of paint on the whole thing. These are boutique exclusives that are only available at boutique locations throughout the world with a price of $26,600. hublot.com

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Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


Haute horology is sometimes mistaken for meaning complicated watches. But, of course, we know haute horology is more than that. Haute horology simply means elevating watchmaking to the level of art, to go beyond functionality and take aesthetics to another level. So, even the simplest watches can be considered haute horology if the treatment is right. And in the past couple of years, we have seen many examples of haute horology brands scaling back on complicated pieces and focusing on the pure essentials of watchmaking to create simpler pieces. An example is Greubel Forsey’s Signature One, a simple time-only watch from a brand that is renown for its complicated inclined multi-axis tourbillons. Another watch that joins the Signature One is the new Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor watch.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


Romain Gauthier is perhaps most famous for its Logical One watch (hands-on here), a watch that uses a novel chain and fusee system to deliver energy to the escapement. It looks simple, but it is a deceptively complex piece. The new Insight Micro-Rotor, on the other hand, is dead simple, but no less impressive.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


The name Insight comes from Romain Gauthier’s desire to give owners full view of the inner workings of the watch. And indeed, much of the movement’s mechanism can viewed through the dial and the sapphire display case back. But more on the movement later, let’s talk about the case first.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


The Insight Micro-Rotor’s case size is a very modest 39.5mm and it will be available in 18k red gold and platinum. Both case versions will also have the option of three different dials: white enamel, black enamel, or blue enamel. Production of each dial variant will be limited to just 10 pieces, which means total production for this piece is just 60 in total. Water resistance is 50m, which is commendable given that most haute horology watches usually come with pitiful water resistance. At 50m, this means you can wash your hands comfortably without worrying about a little water getting onto the watch.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


As I mentioned earlier, the Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor is all about giving its owners a glimpse of its inner workings, and so the dial configuration is a little odd. In the center, you have the subsidiary seconds dial, and up at 12 o’clock you have the main hours and minutes dial. Interestingly, the hours and minutes dial has Roman numerals for the hour makers, whereas the subsidiary seconds have Arabic numerals that mark out every five seconds. I’m indifferent to this arrangement, but I suppose some readers would rather Romain Gauthier be consistent in their choice of numeral systems.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


To the left, at 9 o’clock, you have the fairly large swinging micro-rotor, which is crafted out of 22k solid gold. The rotor is mounted between two bridges for stability and uses two ruby bearings to reduce friction and noise. And at 6 o’clock, you have the escapement, which uses eccentric weights for adjustments. Finally, at about 4 o’clock, you have a plaque with the Romain Gauthier logo.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


The movement was designed from the ground up by Romain Gauthier, and one of the key aims of the movement was to have a bidirectional micro-rotor. It has two mainspring barrels arranged in series for more consistent power delivery, and power reserve is a healthy 80 hours. And as you would expect from a Romain Gauthier watch, the movement is elaborately and exquisitely decorated. The bridges are hand beveled and polished, as are the jewel countersinks. Other work done on the movement includes snailing, straight-graining, circular-graining, and frosting. It’s hard to tell from press photos, but I reckon the movement will look stunning in the flesh.


Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor Watch Watch Releases


It is nice to see haute horology brands taking a step back at times and focusing on the pure essentials of watchmaking. Haute horology doesn’t always need to always be about complications, it can also be about considered, functional, practical pieces that celebrate the traditional handwork that goes into watchmaking. The new Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor fully embodies this philosophy. The Romain Gauthier Insight Micro-Rotor in 18k red gold is priced at 75,000 Swiss francs, whereas the model in platinum is priced at 88,000 Swiss francs. romaingauthier.com