Audemars Piguet Spent Nine Years Perfecting This Watch’s Chime

It’s about time!


Watchmaking is a notoriously exacting process, with it taking years of research and development to get the nuts and bolts in synch. A recent timepiece from Audemars Piguet bears this out to a painstakingly precise degree.

The venerable Swiss watch giant spent nine long years perfecting the chime featured on its sporty new Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie. According to Robb Report, its distinctive chime does’t really come from a sonnerie but rather from its tourbillon minute-repeater chronograph.

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(Photo: Audemars Piguet)

The watch works with a piece from a classic 1924 watch, which the folks at Audemars Piguet spent three years studying. In the next six, they set about recapturing and improving upon it. The chime is suspended underneath a baseplate, and gongs are anchored to a metallic, copper-alloy soundboard to reverberate the soundwaves. The result is a sterling example of a minute repeater, which chimes in different tones on hours, quarter hours, and minutes.

Considerable effort also went into the ultra-sleek look of the watch. Its case is made of durable titanium and glare-proofed sapphire crystal, blessing it with a sharp, modern flair. Its intricate black dial has been outfitted with white-gold hands for some yin and yang. The whole thing is wrapped up in a black-rubber strap, which plays up the watch’s decidedly sporty side. 

For the full effect, check out this video of the hand-wound Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie from Audemars Piguet:

h/t Robb Report