Patek Philippe is a collectors’ favorite, a reason the luxury watchmaker doesn’t shy from experimenting with new complications that may or may not have practical implications. Well, it really doesn’t matter, the idea is to sell well with the collectors who like newness in the manufacturing process.
One such Patek Philippe example is the new minute repeater watch designed by the Swiss watchmaker. Dubbed Advanced Research reference 5750 “Fortissimo” this minute repeater watch is limited to just 15 pieces and has been designed innovatively to sound louder during the chiming process.
Reworked chiming watch
Patek Philippe has approached the minute repeater with a new development mechanism. The fundamentals of this chiming watch have been reworked to improve its volume and tone.
The Advanced Research reference 5750 “Fortissimo” comes in a 40mm platinum case that is inspired by the wheels of the classic cars from the 1960s. Measuring 11.1mm thick – which is still slim for an automatic repeater watch – the watch with spoke-like patterned dial enjoys a complicated look that will be a little difficult to read until you get the hang of it.
Swaying away from the traditional approach of minute repeaters, Patek Philippe has for this watch created a fortissimo ‘ff’ module. This functions as a mechanical loudspeaker, separating the chiming mechanism from the case, so the hammer and gong system sounds better.
In addition to the sound amplification system, it also leverages the hardness of sapphire crystal to allow the sound to pass through four openings at the cardinal points on the watch. The watch, like the minute repeaters otherwise, has not been made water-resistant, since the water-tight cases are not known for allowing the sounds to pass through. The Advanced Research 5750 case is therefore made moisture and dust resistant so the sound from the chiming mechanism can easily pass through.
Movement and pricing
The Advanced Research 5750 is powered by a self-winding caliber R 27, which operates at 3Hz and offers the watch approximately 45 hour power reserve. The platinum case watch, to look more vibrant and attractive, comes paired with a shiny orange, hand-stitched alligator leather strap.
The Patek Philippe minute repeater is strictly limited to only 15 watches, which means not everyone will be able to hear the loud chimes on their wrist. However, if you’re interested, and want a rare minute repeater in your collection, this one is retailing for CHF 590,000 (approx. $640,000).