Panerai Reveals New Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Ceramica

Zoomed in back of Luminor Tourbillon
The Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Ceramica has a 12-sided titanium back

This year’s Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) saw the release of Officine Panerai‘s Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Ceramica, a model truly to be reckoned with. The brand’s newest creation combines Panerai’s trademark tourbillon mechanism with a dual time display, a mix of unrivaled sophistication and innovation.

The tourbillon is a part of a watch escapement that counteracts the effects of gravity, invented by Abraham-Louis Breguet in 1795. Watches with this feature mount the escapement in a “carriage” or rotating frame that turns 360 degrees at regular intervals, reducing gravitational error. At the time that Breguet finalized his invention, most watches were pocket watches and thus were almost always in one position. The effect of gravity on these timepieces was especially conspicuous, so to offset adverse changes Breguet provided the perfect solution.

The Luminor 1950 has a personalized Panerai leather strap and an adjustable buckle made of steel. The 48 mm diameter case is made of synthetic ceramic with a zirconium powder base, showcasing the adept skill of Panerai’s manufacturing. The processes undergone to achieve the final model’s matte black color are particularly complex and thoroughly ensure resistance to corrosive agents, high temperatures and scratches.

The Luminor 1950 functions by the Panerai P.2005 movement, which produces 28,000 vph and exhibits a six day power reserve, thanks to a three series-connected spring barrels. The 12-sided titanium back displays a centered window of sapphire crystal so that one can glimpse at the P.2005 mechanism in action. This is the first time a Panerai model has had the P.2005 B version built in, which is essentially a blackened version of the traditional movement. Panerai’s patented tourbillon mechanism has the balance rotate on its axis every 30 seconds.

The black dial lends more to the Luminor 1950’s theme of graphic simplicity, with Panerai’s original sandwich structure to help provide for maximum visibility even under very dim lighting conditions. At 3 o’clock, the small dial indicates the time over 24 hours as well as am or pm. The dial at 9 o’clock connects to the tourbillon and moves twice as fast as the second hand, thus deemed the small seconds dial. It consists of multiple dot markers and completes one revolution in half a minute. This dual time concept is a Panerai method implemented in many models. Combined with the tourbillon, the Luminor 1950 reinforces at once both tradition and modernism.

Complete back of Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Ceramica
The back of the model displays the 6 day power reserve

IWC’s Pilot’s Watch Worldtimer is Hot at SIHH 2012

Written by: Michael Arnold

The Salon International De La Haute Horlogerie (SIHH) is well underway in Geneva, Switzerland. Among the 19 other luxury watch brands present, IWC Schaffhausen has been grabbing attention.

IWC’s Pilot Watches Collection includes five watches that are all unique in their own right. The most intriguing of the collection, perhaps, is the Pilot’s Watch Worldtimer. It has attracted so much attention from the SIHH clientele because the Worldtimer is a watch that truly caters to a wealthy traveling class of people.

The watch face has a lot going on – large numerals and a 24 hour ring surrounded by the 24 time zones of the world. Worldtimer owners can know the time in both Paris and Samoa with just a glance at their wrists. The watch’s dial is bulky, but allows the wearer to change the time zone accordingly with ease.

Obviously this type of watch will be most appealing to travelers. It eliminates the need for time zone conversions when set properly. Business-people, frequent vacationers and, of course, pilots will be mutual beneficiaries of this timepiece.

In addition to utility, the Pilot’s Watch Worldtimer has a very cool look. It’s sleek 45mm stainless steel case is as strong as it looks. It’s coated by convex sapphire crystals with anti-reflective coatings. The Worldtimer’s soft iron inner case protects it from magnetic disruption so its wearer can trust that it will stay accurate over the course of extensive travels.

A water resistant watch is a must, but this timepiece goes above and beyond. It can be submerged in up to 200 feet of water and still function properly. The Worldtimer is powered by the Caliber 30750 mechanical movement, a self winding movement that is built on 31 jewels.

In terms of aesthetics, its black alligator strap meshes quite nicely with the stainless steel case. It is elegant, yet very utility – a neat combination of attractiveness and usefulness.

The Pilot’s Watch Worldtimer is a hot item at the SIHH 2012. It is rivaling other top brands because of its many great attributes. Beyond SIHH, high class travelers worldwide should look into this timepiece. It’s currently at the best of its kind, rendering other travel watches obsolete.

IWC Pilot's Watch Worldtimer
IWC Pilot’s Watch Worldtimer.

Panerai is Set to Impress at the SIHH 2012

Written by: Michael Arnold

The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie

The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie (SIHH), a private event in Geneva, Switzerland that exhibits luxury watch brands, is but a few days away.

Last month, Panerai released its preview for the 2012 event – and this timepiece is sure to impress. Only 18 exhibitors will be present at this esteemed event, and only 12,500 privileged guests will be in attendance.

The Luminor Marina 1950 3 Days Automatic is a 47mm vintage watch. The timepiece is comprised of 21 jewels and two spring barrels. It is a limited edition timepiece, with only 2,000  in circulation.

It has a classy brown leather strap and a stainless steel case. The dial of the watch is covered by a 3mm thick plexiglass crystal, and its watch face is marked with Panerai’s classic large Arabic numerals. Truly a marvel.

And that’s exactly what the guests at the SIHH 2012 will be doing – marveling. This high class event is any watch lovers dream. 30,000 square meters of exhibition space, 1,500 represented points of sale and 1,200 journalists to cover it all makes SIHH the luxury watch event of the year, every year.

A bevy of international watch brands will be showcasing their newest and most spectacular designs, “the result of often years of intensive research” according to the SIHH 2012 official website.

“Perfection through Tradition,” is the mantra of this event. The SIHH values ingenuity in the industry, but equally supports the notion of presenting watches that are defined by “craftsmanship and technique.” The Luminor Marina 1950 will fit right in, for obvious reasons.

The Luminor Marina 1950 finished its debut at a Milan exhibition called “The “O’Clock – time design, design time,” earlier this week, just in time for the SIHH. This event fostered quite a different vibe than the upscale and traditional SIHH event usually does. Rooted in exploring the relationship between time and design, the contemporary Milan exhibition used Panerai’s vintage, chic watch in an “in-depth reflection about time.”

Its versatile audience makes the Luminor Marina 1950 one of the hottest and most highly anticipated items in luxury watches this year.

Panerai Luminor Marina 1950
The Panerai Luminor Marina 1950.

Cartier to Reveal its First Minute Repeater at SIHH 2012

Cartier Rotonde Minute Repeater Watch
Cartier’s first minute repeater watch, to be revealed at SIHH 2012.

Written by: Vanessa Formato

When it comes to this year’s Salon de la Haute Horologie (SIHH), Cartier Watches is pulling out all the stops. Among the many exciting reveals the luxury watch giants will be making at the event is their very first minute repeater watch, the Rotonde de Cartier Minute Repeater Flying Tourbillon.

Cartier has been anticipating this moment for some time now: the Rotonde de Cartier Minute Repeater Flying Tourbillon has been in development for approximately five years, making the upcoming reveal in Geneva all the more exciting. The watch will feature complications like its namesake flying tourbillon and minute repeater, as well as some elegant visual details like blue hands and accents on the titanium version, accompanied by Cartier’s signature Roman numerals on the face. The flying tourbillon and the repeater mechanisms are visible through the piece’s face, a design aspect that is sure to delight enthusiasts. The watch will also be available in pink gold.

The watch’s availability will be extremely limited. Cartier plans to release only 50 watches in each casing. In addition, only 20 of these artisanal watches can be produced per year, so the demand for the pieces is sure to quickly skyrocket. This isn’t a watch for the casual collector with price tags set at $287,000 for the titanium casing and $294,000 for the pink gold casing. Reportedly, there is also a diamond-accented version planned for future release.

A repeater is a complication that is capable of chiming the time at the press of a button (unlike striking clocks or watches, which sound the time at regular intervals). The increments of time that these watches are capable of tracking is dependent on the kind of repeater implemented. A minute repeater is capable of sounding the time down to the minute through a series of different tones to denote hours and minutes. Minute repeater watches were once a valuable and practical resource for watch-wearers operating in the dark as well as for the visually impaired, but light-up displays and other alternatives for the blind have largely taken their place. Today, they are primarily prized by watch enthusiasts for their intricacy and increasing rarity.

This year’s SIHH will be held January 16 through 20 in Geneva. The event is a private trade fair open only to invited individuals in the fine watch-making community.