My ideal High Accuracy watch
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  1. #1
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    My ideal High Accuracy watch

    The thread about Longines VHP got me thinking about this.
    Here are my key requirements. Its not just about VHP, its about a beautiful high-quality object that is ‘engineered to please’.

    1) It must have time-zone (hour hand) adjust.
    I Liked latest Grand Seiko LE, but because I travel a lot high accuracy is a waste of time without time-zone adjust.

    2) It must be precise.
    I want to adjust it once a year on New-Years day.
    >At 30S before the hour I pull out a button.
    >Both seconds and MINUTES hands go to 12-oclock.
    >On the time-pip I push it back in .. job done.
    During the next year the displayed-time must never be ‘out’ by more than 20s (watch-temperature between 10C and 40C).
    It should be manufactured to 15spy to allow for inaccurate time-pip or second-hand displacements due to shock or magnetism (which are eventually automatically eliminated).
    It sounds like a lax specification, but :-
    >It is not surrounded by get-out clauses. A correctly manufactured watch should only fail after gross abuse (ie 1 month in a fridge).
    >The customer-check is very easy. People doing 1-day tests with clever gear are welcome, but 1-day results will only demonstrate non-conformance in catastrophic circumstances

    3) It must be well made
    That is what I like about Grand Seiko, their web-site is all about the craftsmanship and performance of the watch. They spend a few extra Euros on making the movement look beautiful and even have a model with transparent case-back.
    Longines web-site is all about horse-shows and they cannot even afford jewels (which look nice even if they are not necessary).

    4) It must have a history
    Key events should be recorded in non-volatile memory :-
    >When adjusted and by how much
    >When battery changed
    >Length of time outside temperature-limits between adjustments
    >When and by how much rate adjusted.
    This history gives the watch a bit more personality and allows the investigation of problems (or demonstration of excellence) !

    5) People other than the manufacturer must be able to interact with the watch.
    For me only authorized dealer is acceptable (but not ideal) , only manufacturer is not.
    By interact I mean :-
    >Reset date
    >Adjust rate
    >Read history
    If I have a problem I can go back to the shop that I bought it from, and they can investigate and hopefully sort out the problem.
    This is good for me and for the shop. If the shop does not want to be bothered they should not be dealing in luxury (high mark-up) goods !
    Wempe Quartz Marine Chronometer, Longines VHP, GO Senator Excellence

  2. #2
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    Quote Originally Posted by DaveM View Post
    The thread about Longines VHP got me thinking about this.
    Here are my key requirements. Its not just about VHP, its about a beautiful high-quality object that is ‘engineered to please’.

    1) It must have time-zone (hour hand) adjust.
    I Liked latest Grand Seiko LE, but because I travel a lot high accuracy is a waste of time without time-zone adjust.

    2) It must be precise.
    I want to adjust it once a year on New-Years day.
    >At 30S before the hour I pull out a button.
    >Both seconds and MINUTES hands go to 12-oclock.
    >On the time-pip I push it back in .. job done.
    During the next year the displayed-time must never be ‘out’ by more than 20s (watch-temperature between 10C and 40C).
    It should be manufactured to 15spy to allow for inaccurate time-pip or second-hand displacements due to shock or magnetism (which are eventually automatically eliminated).
    It sounds like a lax specification, but :-
    >It is not surrounded by get-out clauses. A correctly manufactured watch should only fail after gross abuse (ie 1 month in a fridge).
    >The customer-check is very easy. People doing 1-day tests with clever gear are welcome, but 1-day results will only demonstrate non-conformance in catastrophic circumstances

    3) It must be well made
    That is what I like about Grand Seiko, their web-site is all about the craftsmanship and performance of the watch. They spend a few extra Euros on making the movement look beautiful and even have a model with transparent case-back.
    Longines web-site is all about horse-shows and they cannot even afford jewels (which look nice even if they are not necessary).

    4) It must have a history
    Key events should be recorded in non-volatile memory :-
    >When adjusted and by how much
    >When battery changed
    >Length of time outside temperature-limits between adjustments
    >When and by how much rate adjusted.
    This history gives the watch a bit more personality and allows the investigation of problems (or demonstration of excellence) !

    5) People other than the manufacturer must be able to interact with the watch.
    For me only authorized dealer is acceptable (but not ideal) , only manufacturer is not.
    By interact I mean :-
    >Reset date
    >Adjust rate
    >Read history
    If I have a problem I can go back to the shop that I bought it from, and they can investigate and hopefully sort out the problem.
    This is good for me and for the shop. If the shop does not want to be bothered they should not be dealing in luxury (high mark-up) goods !
    Sound good; I hope you'll let us know when you reach the end of the rainbow.
    tmathes likes this.

  3. #3
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    Well thought out and presented list. I would like to see a HAQ Mondaine watch without date in their iconic Swiss Rail Road watch style, well made and legible.

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  5. #4
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    My ideal HAQ would be:

    1. 5 spy or better
    2. IAHH
    3. Solar power
    4. 100m WR or better
    5. Well built SS case, smart style
    6. Decent lume
    7. Perpetual calendar
    8. Must have minute markers, but no sub seconds
    9. Hands that hit the markers

    Hold on, I already have one, The Citizen

    I like your idea of being able to plug in and interrogate the watch though.
    jdmfetish and Miguel like this.

  6. #5
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    We I suppose it is my turn. Start with the Apple watch. Enlarge the display and remove any hardware not directly related to timekeeping. Install the software that the OP mentioned,on the watch or phone app. Cellular and/or GPS time setting.

  7. #6
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    ^^^
    Sounds good.

    By cellular, do you mean NTP over a data connection?

    In my experience, NITZ over GSM i.e. syncing with the cell tower, is always about 1 or 2 seconds out to a decent time source.

  8. #7
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    Quote Originally Posted by hughesyn View Post
    ^^^
    Sounds good.

    By cellular, do you mean NTP over a data connection?

    In my experience, NITZ over GSM i.e. syncing with the cell tower, is always about 1 or 2 seconds out to a decent time source.
    Yes perhaps good to 10s of milliseconds.

  9. #8
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    I think asking for this much history tracking, and this level of connectivity, you're forced into a device with a processor and software. OK, Frederique Constant is making they Hybrid Manufacture, which combines a *mechanical* with several smartwatch aspects (and analytics for the mechanical). It looks pretty big, tho...and they're asking $3500. But it says something like this could all be fit easily enough.

    One thing is, if going this route, I'd demand wireless charging. A battery change would be an absolute deal breaker for me. And at least 10 days' use per charge, along with either an ongoing PR indication of some type, or a low power indicator at, say, 25% power. A problem with integrating in a processor is, it's drawing some power all the time.

    My ideal...

    --yeah, IAHH is really nice

    --I can live with COSC's 25 spy.

    --OK, the kind of quick-set DaveM mentions...that'd be useful. I would do it a little differently...seconds goes to 12, yes, and a quick-shift minutes adjustment, one minute at a time. I get his idea but that limits the adjustment to ONLY on the hour.

    --that said, DO NOT complicate the crown functionality! That's the deal breaker for the new VHPs.

    --either no date whatsoever or perpetual calendar.

    --solar charging may be fine, but it limits dial options big time...the dial has to be transparent enough so the light can power the cell under it. Option B is inductive, wireless charging. As above, this absolutely requires a PR or low-power indication. With simpler functionality, here...I'd want 70 days at a minimum. 2 months plus slack. A nice little charging stand would be a very desirable accessory.

    --a nice GADA dial...something like



    --that said...a reason to go with inductive charging is...make that an *enamel* dial.

    --37-39 mm, keep the lugs sane, 18 or 20 mm lug width (no 19, please!), and sub-10mm height. Could be a trip with inductive charge system.

    --Case...probably carbon fiber for inductive charging (adds mass on its own). Matte dark ceramic would be fine. I like little or no bezel...especially if dropping down to 37. Titanium sintered in nitrogen would give a light, scratchproof (Vickers hardness of ~2000), attractive gold-colored case. Unfortunately this would be *expensive* I think. And with a watch head and dial like that B&R...bronze. With a cream dial.
    The truth is rarely pure and never simple.

    Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest

  10. #9
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    I should have added the wireless charging.

  11. #10
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    Re: My ideal High Accuracy watch

    Deal breaker for me on the VHP is the YUGE crown - it hurts

    "to give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift" - Steve Prefontaine

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