Here’s a real puzzle: What do you make of a watch with a standard case and the word “Automatic” on the face yet a quartz movement inside? And what if the seller of that watch claimed it was a rare prototype with an unknown movement number yet included no photos of the inside of the watch? You’d be skeptical, right? So was I, but I believe this is the real deal: One of two known Omega prototype watch movements running at an amazing 4.2 MHz.
“He’s No Jedi!” Debunking the Omega Seamaster 176.005
If you’ve read this blog for long, you know that I love to scour auction listings for under-described watches that are way more special than they appear. But folks like me also often note pieces that are incorrectly described, and one great example just caught my eye: The Omega Seamaster 176.005 Chronograph is often described as the “Jedi”, an incorrect name for this model and an unofficial one regardless. Let’s take a look.
The Revolutionary Smart Watch from Apple’s Designers (Circa 1990)
Apple will today detail their Watch, ending years of speculation. But Jony Ive and Marc Newsome are not the first Apple designers to create a watch, and the first one out of the gate was truly revolutionary. Pushed by legendary designer Hartmut Esslinger of FROG Design, the Junghans Mega 1 was the first miniaturized atomic clock receiver and sported a distinctive ceramic case.
First In-House Chronograph: Parmigiani Fleurier Kalpagraphe
Parmigiani Fleurier is not a company that ordinary people recognize, and even many watch enthusiasts are unfamiliar with them. But the company has produced some truly remarkable Haute Horology pieces and often prices them aggressively versus similar brands. This Kalpagraphe chronograph follows that trend, with an in-house 68 jewel (!) movement and eye-catching palladium case.
First In-House Chronograph: Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Extreme World Chronograph
Though lacking the original box and papers, this Master Compressor Extreme World Chronograph is a platinum LE model, number 096 of 200. The scarcity of the model, combined with the historical importance of Calibre 752, and the platinum case should bring well over the $5,000 starting bid at Auctionata on March 10.
First In-House Chronograph: A Lange & Söhne Datograph Flyback
Here is a Lange Datograph Flyback, model 453.135. This was the very first Datograph model, cased in platinum, and featuring the then-new Calibre L951.1. The black Roman numeral dial catches the eye, but one should note the bracelet which suggests that this is one of the earliest Datographs produced.
What If Your Company Gave You a Limited-Edition Gold Patek Philippe?
A “gold watch” is an archetypal reward for years of meritorious service to a company. But how cool would it be if your company contracted with Patek Philippe to build a special set of 20 Calatrava watches? That’s exactly what General Motors Overseas Operations did in 1954, and these watches are a unique collectible today!
The Case Against the $10,000 Gold Apple Watch Edition
My post laying out why the gold Apple Watch Edition must cost $10,000 caused quite a stir, but I’ll be the first to admit that I could have it all wrong. It’s entirely possible for them to put together a gold-cased Apple Watch for a much-lower price point, but I’m much more interested in the reasons why: Apple’s manufacturing and retail empire would be seriously disrupted by a $10,000 lump of gold!
Why the Gold Apple Watch Edition Must Cost $10,000
Get ready for the tech press to flip out when Apple announces the retail price for the gold Apple Watch Edition model. Apple critics have always roasted the company for selling products that are more expensive than they should be, and they frequently use this as a wedge topic to criticize buyers. But the “18-karat gold” Apple Watch Edition will set a whole new bar with a sales price of $10,000. The funny thing in this case is that Apple is perfectly right to be charging that much!
The Curious Case of the Column Wheel Valjoux 7750 Variants
I first discovered the world of column wheel 7750 variants while looking at a Longines Heritage Chronograph. The movement looked vaguely familiar to me, yet I couldn’t place it. A bit of research revealed it to be something really special: A column wheel variant of the Valjoux 7753 built by ETA for their Valgranges line. Then I stumbled on the fact that Omega also got a version of this ETA Valgranges A08.L01 movement with a Co-Axial escapement.
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