SONIC BOOM

The Peak Selections: Timepieces - - The Brief / A - List -

Pre­sented as a con­cept time­piece last year, one of the loud­est and clear­est minute re­peat­ing wrist­watches around was launched this year as a pro­duc­tion piece proper. The Aude­mars Piguet Royal Oak Con­cept Su­per­son­nerie owes its sonic prow­ess to two in­no­va­tions. The first is the silent gov­er­nor, a mech­a­nism that reg­u­lates the speed of the minute re­peater chimes. While typ­i­cal gov­er­nors emit a buzz of some sort, the one in­side the Su­per­son­nerie works with­out a peep.

While the silent gov­er­nor takes away any sound that might in­ter­fere with the re­peater chimes, the sound­board in­side the case am­pli­fies the chimes to a re­mark­able vol­ume. In­stead of be­ing fixed to the move­ment as in an or­di­nary re­peater, the gongs of the Su­per­son­nerie are at­tached to a cop­per disc that works like the sound­board of a vi­o­lin or pi­ano. Im­pres­sive as the re­peater is, the Su­per­son­nerie is also equipped with a chrono­graph and one-minute tour­bil­lon for good mea­sure.

For­tu­nately, the re­peat­ing mech­a­nism can be trans­lated to other move­ments, which bodes well for Aude­mars Piguet’s chim­ing watches to come. Aude­mars Piguet Royal Oak Con­cept Su­per­son­nerie, $861,600

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