100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?
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  1. #1
    Member Don Nghia's Avatar
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    Confused 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Pepertual Calendar?
    Moonphase ?
    even a Tourbillon
    or Minute Repeater...

    Those was super High-End Mechanical watch complication which cost thoundsands or even Millions $. But all of them was invented more than 100 years ago (First Tourbillon was in a Napoleon Clock).

    That's mean for many years watch complication have never been Innovative. The only things that Brand are imporving is Design, movement (Not new Complication).

    It is so hard nowadays to invent new complication or the watchmarker already reach their Limit in Mechanical Complication ? That we can hardly found any new mechanical complication?

    Can some guys help me to answer this question ?

    Edit: As everyone of us here have our own definition of complication. So to be clear

    1/ The complication we mention here must be Included in/ Part of the movement

    If it is not and you want to agure than come to "2"

    2/ You have to Prove that there are some High-Reputation Watchmakers/Brands out there call that function on their own watch a "Complication". And please give some references.
    Last edited by Don Nghia; September 13th, 2018 at 18:17.

  2. #2
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    Well they are limited by their medium of being mechanical. Do you have any good ideas for a complication? Not trying to sound rude, genuinely interested in hearing some good potential complications. Generally newer complications are novelties e g. Animations eg. Van cleefs arpels, or complications for a specific job eg yachtmaster, obviously we won't see Bluetooth support 🙂

    The advancements we see today are more about improved machine precision than complications, making things that were technically limited possible.
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    Moderator Emeritus Bradjhomes's Avatar
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Complications are supposed to be useful.

    If something would be useful to have on a watch, chances are it’s been done by now (if possible).

    As the poster above said...is there anything you can think of that’s missing?
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Are we looking at the same industry?

    There's tons of innovation in this industry even today. Granted most of it exists in the absolute stratosphere in terms of pricing. But think of watches like the Krayon Everywhere. HYT or Urwerk with their innovative displays. I could go on and on.

    Modern production methods including CNC have opened so many more possibilities than ever before, and it's frankly fascinating.
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bradjhomes View Post
    Complications are supposed to be useful.

    If something would be useful to have on a watch, chances are it’s been done by now (if possible).

    As the poster above said...is there anything you can think of that’s missing?
    Specifically must be useful?

    Krayon Everywhere is the best example that comes to mind.

    But given mechanical watches also exist as a medium of art, I dont feel its reasonable to limit it to just what's useful. With modern production techniques, new and beautiful methods of displaying time are being made that could never have been imagined 100 years ago.
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Not to be rude, Don, but you seem prone to creating posts based on broad ideas that you've not bothered to research.

    Here are a smattering of complications which are less than 100 years old, which you could have easily found:

    1935: Favre-Leuba created the Bivouac altimeter/barometer watch.
    1979: Launch of the Delirium, the world's thinnest watch (1.98mm).
    1989: Patek Philippe made the most complicated pocket watch of its time to commemorate its 150th anniversary.
    1996: Philippe Dufour invented the Duality, a wristwatch with a double regulator, a complication that is considered to be even more complex than the tourbillon.
    1999: Omega launched the coaxial escapement, developed some 20 years previously by George Daniels.
    2000: François-Paul Journe unveiled the first resonance watch.
    2004: A flurry of "multiple" tourbillons, with the GyroTourbillon by Jaeger-LeCoultre, Tourbillon Révolution by Franck Muller, Double-Tourbillon 30° by Greubel-Forsey and Thomas Prescher's triple tourbillon.
    2005: Seiko launched the Spring Drive Kinetic, the first self-winding mechanical watch with an electromagnetic escapement.

    Looks like things aren't so stagnant afterall
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  8. #7
    Member Don Nghia's Avatar
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Quote Originally Posted by UberDave View Post
    Not to be rude, Don, but you seem prone to creating posts based on broad ideas that you've not bothered to research.

    Here are a smattering of complications which are less than 100 years old, which you could have easily found:

    1935: Favre-Leuba created the Bivouac altimeter/barometer watch.
    1979: Launch of the Delirium, the world's thinnest watch (1.98mm).
    1989: Patek Philippe made the most complicated pocket watch of its time to commemorate its 150th anniversary.
    1996: Philippe Dufour invented the Duality, a wristwatch with a double regulator, a complication that is considered to be even more complex than the tourbillon.
    1999: Omega launched the coaxial escapement, developed some 20 years previously by George Daniels.
    2000: François-Paul Journe unveiled the first resonance watch.
    2004: A flurry of "multiple" tourbillons, with the GyroTourbillon by Jaeger-LeCoultre, Tourbillon Révolution by Franck Muller, Double-Tourbillon 30° by Greubel-Forsey and Thomas Prescher's triple tourbillon.
    2005: Seiko launched the Spring Drive Kinetic, the first self-winding mechanical watch with an electromagnetic escapement.

    Looks like things aren't so stagnant afterall
    I'm sorry but
    I will call all of you mentioned the movement/ Design improvement , or the Improvement on already exist Complication not a whole-new mechanical complication,

    Non of the brand call a Thinner watch, a resonance watch or Spring Dive a New Complication in their marketing !
    Yes, the only Innovation is all now base on the Multi-Axis Tourbillion (Still a Tourbillion Complication though)

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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Nghia View Post
    I'm sorry but
    I will call all of you mentioned the movement/ Design improvement , or the Improvement on already exist Complication not a whole-new mechanical complication,

    Non of the brand call a Thinner watch, a resonance watch or Spring Dive a New Complication in their marketing !
    Yes, the only Innovation is all now base on the Multi-Axis Tourbillion (Still a Tourbillion Complication though)
    I dont think you read that guys post, mate.
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    Member UberDave's Avatar
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Quote Originally Posted by Don Nghia View Post
    I'm sorry but
    I will call all of you mentioned the movement/ Design improvement , or the Improvement on already exist Complication not a whole-new mechanical complication,

    Non of the brand call a Thinner watch, a resonance watch or Spring Dive a New Complication in their marketing !
    Yes, the only Innovation is all now base on the Multi-Axis Tourbillion (Still a Tourbillion Complication though)
    I don't know man. On one hand, it seems like you think that a complication is anything a watch does in addition to telling time. On the other hand, you seem to think a tourbillon is a complication. Shrug.

    Granted, I included some things which are clearly not "complications" in my list.
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  11. #10
    Member MrDagon007's Avatar
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    Re: 100 years of NO Innovation in Mechanical Watch complications ? - Limit reached?

    Have a look at the recent Zenith Defy “lab” edition - a radically different way for a mechanical watch to work, with a high accuracy. You can find videos in youtube.
    That is deep innovation, and I expect its core mechanism will eventually percolate down to the more basic zeniths.
    UberDave, oztech and ffritz like this.

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