Talk about ultra-thin movements and one brand naturally comes to mind - Piaget. In recent history, Piaget has been the undisputed masters of ultra-thin movements. However, that could soon change.
The Girard-Perregaux Chrono Hawk is 44mm wide in an angular steel case that also mixes cues from the older Laureato models as well as the former generation Sea Hawk. However, there are some new things as well. First are the case curved chronograph pushers that remind me a lot of the new pushers on Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph models. There is the black rubber ring between the case and bezel, as well as black rubber trim throughout.
For 2013, Seiko has introduced a limited edition re-issue of the legendary Grand Seiko 44GS. The 44GS is noteworthy because it was the first Grand Seiko to have a completely reworked design that embodies the Grand Seiko aims of engineering excellence and art. The story behind this is that a young graduate who joined Seiko thought that the Grand Seiko watches of that time did not have the looks to complement its engineering credentials. He then set out a new style for the brand which became the bedrock for future Grand Seiko designs, which led to the original Grand Seiko 44GS of 1967.
While the periphery of the Tourbillon watch is fitted with a minute and hour scale, most of what you see through the dial is the movement. In this case, a series of industrial-style finishing is mixed with traditional bevelling and other decoration techniques. We certainly like that in one view there are so many types of polish. Note the perlage finishing next to 3 o'clock on the Tourbillon Earth model, while the highly limited Tourbillon Racing has its own distinct set of red-colored bridges.
The Baume & Mercier 10055 is powered by a Sellita SW 300 with a Dubois Depraz 9000 calendar module added to support the extra features. The SW 300 offers automatic winding, 25 jewels and a power reserve of 42 hours making it a suitable replacement for a movement such as the ETA 2824 or 2892. The four additional features (date, day, month and moon phase) are each controlled via distinct pin pushers at two, four, eight and ten on the case sides (see the included video for a better look). These pushers require a small pointed instrument and a steady hand to advance any of the features. While a bit cumbersome, these pin pushers allow the 10055 a much more elegant case profile that is not complicated by standard pushers or buttons. Timekeeping was accurate to within a few anecdotal seconds per day and the Clifton can be hand wound to prevent having to re-establish the accuracy of the triple cal and moon phase display.