As the glamourous "Watches & Wonders 2015" exhibition drew to a complete close, it's timely to look back on some of the brand new releases from the dozen of manufacturers that took part in this horology extravaganza. We've got to meet with 2 new Panerais that are finally finding their way to the radar of collectors favoring smaller dimensions. We've seen the super complicated, magnificent reference 57260 from Vacheron Constantin (and it's a huge pity that no photos were allowed to be taken of it). And how can we forget the lovely A.Lange 1815 Chronograph that takes our breathe away with its clean palette? No. We can't.
As much as we've wanted to cover every single new watches coming out of the event, it's simply impossible. As a result, we've decided to find the single most interesting, wearable, refreshing product line that is actually AFFORDABLE to introduce to our readers. One particular collection from the renowned watchmaker Jaeger-LeCoultre had rightfully called for my complete attention when I first laid my sight on it. It's the kind of watch that checks all the right boxes. Balanced watch profile. Innovative razor-shaped hands. Finely grained dial. There are so nanny clever features that came together in this 39.7mm watch that, for a second, I lost focus (but remained fixated on this sheer beauty - it has to be magic/ love). And then when I saw its second hand ticked, just like a run-of-the-mill quartz watch, I KNEW this is it. This is the watch Lengbeau has to cover. The plot twist here is: it's not quartz.
Ladies and gentlemen, Lengbeau gives you The Jaeger-LeCoultre Geophysic "True Second".
A Lengbeau feature would never be complete without us geeking out on a watch's history/ stories/ anecdotes and we are giving our Jaeger-LeCoultre ("JLC") product here the Lengbeau treatment it deserves. Let's begin with the fundamentals. What IS Geophysic?
Let's go back in time to 1958 when JLC released their first Geophysic model.
By now I'm sure most of you would be wondering what on earth is this watch doing? Isn't a ticking hand a unique feature of quartz watches? How is this possible on a mechanical watch? The fact is, this is hardly an unseen before technology. Old pendulum clocks, for instance, ticked, instead of swept. As a matter of fact there are more than a handful of wristwatch manufacturers who are occasionally making mechanical watches with jumping second hands, a feature often known as "Deadbeat". This allows the wearer to tell time more accurately by the second. It also doesn't hurt that this creates a nice little visual interest.
To create such a watch, JLC has built from scratch a completely new caliber named 770 boasting two novel components: the Gyrolab Balance Wheel and a Second Hairspring. Let's take a look at the beauty (and very much a beast at the same time) of a movement that powers our Quartz-like masterpiece here.
Another special feature to look for when studying the caliber 770 is the unorthodox balance wheel that's not exactly circular anymore. Instead it has taken the form of a curved "H". Not unlike the silhouette of an Imperial TIE Fighter from Star War.
"The non-circular configuration of the balance wheel required lengthy research in order to reduce air resistance. Named the Gyrolab®, this device was initially developed in a laboratory version back in 2007 to equip the Master Compressor Extreme Lab 1 watch. It took eight years to transition from the confidential version to one that could be incorporated into an entire watch line. Geophysic® is the first collection to enjoy the full benefits of this key breakthrough and its determining influence on the precision of the watch."
By now you should be able to tell why the Geophysic True Second is such an exciting new timepiece. For a fairly reasonable price (USD 9,050 in steel, and USD 17,500 in red gold) you are getting to be first few lucky souls to enjoy a brand new technology that took a top-notch manufacturer 8 years just to commercialize. Not to mention the True Second feature, the finishing, the dial, the razor hand (I know I have mentioned them before but I'd simply have to say it again) that come with it. So far it seems like a pretty good deal to me.
The Universal Time variation is based off the True Second, with a caliber named 772 which is basically the same as 770 with an additional feature to adjust for world times. Remember how the birth of Geophysic in 1958 had to do with promoting international knowledge transfer on scientific topics? Our guess is the Universal Time serves as a homage to the very spirit that started it all. Pricing wise, the Geophyic Universal Time is USD 15,000 in stainless steel and USD 25,000 in pink gold.
Wrist Presence and Conclusion
If you are one of those daredevils that could fend off suspicions with ease that your watch is just some random quartz number, and maintain your inner cool knowing everything that's actually happening INSIDE (which might not be known to an outsider at all), I strongly suggest you go pick up a Geophysic. This is nonchalance at its best. And it's simply badass.
To learn more about the collection, click here. See you around.
真秒 － 跳動的指針
「 經多年研究，Jaeger-LeCoultre積家研製出Gyrolab®擺輪，其非圓形的結構設計可有效減少空氣摩擦。此裝置的實驗室版本早於2007年已成功研發，並裝配於Master Compressor Extreme Lab 1極限運動大師系列腕錶1之中；在八年後，這個保密的版本才轉化並應用到整個腕錶系列。Gyrolab®為腕錶的精準度帶來重大突破，而地球物理天文台腕錶®系列是第一個採用了這項技術的腕錶系列。」