Jaeger-LeCoult re unveils an evolution of the Geophysic Universal Time, the well-received world time watch, equipping it with a flying orbital tourbillon. Not only is it fascinating to watch the tourbillon’s daily journey around the dial, it serves to highlight a technical development that was already in the Geophysic, but was hidden from view on the case back: the Gyrolab balance wheel. It’s certainly a key component for any mechanical watch, but here, it took Jaeger-LeCoultre eight years to develop its unique configuration. The fact that it’s no longer circular reduces its total surface area, which in turns limits the impact of aerodynamic drag. It might seem like an obvious development, but the balance wheel plays a critical part in chronometry. The maison is confident enough in the Gyromax that it now equips all the current Geophysic watches. We do need to draw attention to the finishing on the dial, for here too, JaegerLeCoultre takes it to the next level, the convex shape giving it added depth and highlighting the guilloché spirals on the blue lacquered ocean.
With the maelst rom of watches that are unveiled at SIHH, there are some pieces that come in under the radar, but that hit all the right notes. Jaeger-LeCoultre had three such timepieces to show, made to celebrate the 25th anniversary of its signature Master Control collection. They are, if you will, an exercise in simplicity and classicism; the complications in themselves are, for lack of a better word, a tad ordinary. However, we would argue that there are very much the kinds of watches that clients, and not necessarily high-browed collectors, are looking for these days. Each has a stainless steel case, either 39mm or 40mm, depending on the complication (the chronograph caliber requires a bit more room). They all have blue skeletonized baton hands, and opaline finished dials with circular satin-brushed details. They are, however, the very essence of mechanical watchmaking, classic but in a contemporary interpretation. Just the thing to ignite the spark in a new generation of enthusiasts.