It is not too late to get to the topic. As of this writing, it was February 28, 2017. This February is 28 days, and today is March 1. When this article was published in the Watch House, I think it was already early March. As a person who writes a table for a living, he prepares the contents of the perpetual calendar every year until February, and such days have passed for many years. Fortunately, at the Watch House this year, for the first time, I no longer had to rack my brains. Under various restrictions, I tried to find a perpetual calendar without any connection between various brands. Huge articles. Although I have done this for many years, I know it well and it doesn’t make much sense. This year, I would like to share with you some perpetual calendars that I have ‘admired’ for years. They are not from Patek Philippe, but from Audemars Piguet.
Audemars Piguet is the inventor of the modern perpetual calendar. It is also the only watch factory in the historical period that produces perpetual calendars. The picture above shows some full calendar and perpetual calendar watches produced in the history of Audemars Piguet.
There are several large perpetual calendars in the watch industry, and they are ‘respected’ all year round. These kinds of perpetual calendars have basically reached the highest peak of this type of watch in the watch industry. It is difficult for latecomers to surpass them.
1. Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar. The perpetual calendar is one of Patek Philippe’s core complex functions. The perpetual calendar combination is the most iconic type of Patek Philippe’s watches. The two functions combine seamlessly, and the dial layout is harmonious and perfect. Few watches in the watch industry can compete with Patek Philippe.
Patek Philippe 52.7 million calendar chronograph, 5270 is Patek Philippe’s representative of the perpetual calendar chronograph.
2. IWC Perpetual Calendar. The IWC perpetual calendar started with the Da Vinci perpetual calendar in the 1980s, adding the full 4 year to the dial in digital form (such as 2017). And the whole set of perpetual calendar functions is adjusted by a crown, becoming the iconic function of IWC. Later generations took IWC as the object of imitation and reference. And IWC further developed the large calendar jumping character perpetual calendar.
IWC’s famous 4-character perpetual calendar. The picture shows the IWC Portuguese perpetual calendar.
3. Henry Moser Perpetual Calendar. The perpetual calendar of Henry Moser is marked by minimalism. At first glance, there is no difference between the watch face and the ordinary calendar, but it is actually a complex perpetual calendar. The 12-month month display is indicated by a small arrow pointer in the center of the dial. The 12-point time scale of the dial refers to the 12 months, and the flat indicator is on the back of the watch. The minimalist perpetual calendar design watch industry is unique.
Henry Moser’s minimalist perpetual calendar, on the surface, would like a regular watch.
4. Perpetual calendar for Audemars Piguet and Vacheron Constantin. Audemars Piguet and Vacheron Constantin’s perpetual calendar is basically the same (the reason is detailed below). This is a perpetual calendar that is very harmonious and perfect like the Patek Philippe perpetual calendar. On the other hand, the watch face is smooth, simple and beautiful.
Vacheron Constantin’s perpetual calendar with Zhou Zheng on the plate.
Of course, in addition to these four types of perpetual calendars, there are other perpetual calendars, such as Roger Dubuis’ retrograde perpetual calendars, etc., but the above four types of perpetual calendars are the most perpetual calendars in the country, and they are very strong. Mass Basis. It can also be seen that people love these kinds of perpetual calendars. Today’s protagonist is the Audemars Piguet calendar.
Although the function of the perpetual calendar has more than 100 years of history, the perpetual calendar watch in the modern sense was invented by Audemars Piguet.
What is modern significance? Audemars Piguet first put the leap year display on the perpetual calendar watch, so that the perpetual calendar watch has the current look. Audemars Piguet 5516 is the first modern perpetual calendar in history. We can see that at 12 o’clock on the dial, there is a flat leap year display that is divided into 4 parts (note that Audemars Piguet puts the date on the outer circle of the dial and indicates with pointers. Audemars Piguet’s new perpetual calendar also borrows from this layout ). The famous perpetual calendar 3448 in the history of Patek Philippe, there is no flat display on the dial, I have always wondered how they are different from the flat display without flat display (please point out)? In the 1950s launched by Audemars Piguet 5516, no perpetual calendar has a flat display. Audemars Piguet launched its perpetual calendar watch with flat display 30 years before Patek Philippe. A total of 12 Audemars Piguet 5516s were produced, but only 9 of them were displayed with flat display. It is worth noting that even these 12 perpetual calendars were the only and extremely rare perpetual calendar watches in the entire watch industry at that time (there are only a few perpetual calendar watches in the world). At that time, there were almost no perpetual calendar watches in the entire altarpiece. Two years ago, one of the nine Audemars Piguet 5516s was auctioned. At that time, it was valued at $ 150,000 to $ 300,000, about RMB 1 million to 2 million.
The most famous 55.16 million perpetual calendar in Audemars Piguet history, this is the first perpetual calendar with flat display.
The flat display at 12 o’clock on the disk is the first time in history.
We can see that the two perpetual calendars on the left are versions without flat display, and the 5516 on the right has a flat display.
There is no display version of the Patek Philippe 3448. It can not be seen on the disk whether it is a flat year or a leap year.
After 5516, Audemars Piguet made another ‘major invention.’
Everyone knows that Jero Zunda helped Audemars Piguet design the Royal Oak in 1972, and then Audemars Piguet relied on the Royal Oak all the way to the present day. It is precisely for this reason that people have ignored an ‘a major invention’ of Audemars Piguet, which not only affects Audemars Piguet, but also has an important influence on the watch industry. This is the Audemars Piguet calendar based on the 2120/2121 movement. We all know that the 920 movement developed by Jaeger-LeCoultre has not been used for a day. The 920 movement is completely used by Patek Philippe, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet. The Audemars Piguet version of the 920 movement is called 2120/2121 (the 2121 is a skeleton automatic version). This movement is the thinnest automatic winding movement in the 1970s and has a thickness of only 3.95 mm. After the launch of Royal Oak, Audemars Piguet decided to design and manufacture a perpetual calendar module suitable for the 2120 movement. At the time, in the entire watch industry, only Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe produced perpetual calendars in small quantities (at the time, Audemars Piguet’s perpetual calendar was ‘advanced’ than Patek Philippe). In the end, Audemars Piguet produced a perpetual calendar module consisting of 159 parts and corresponding to the 2120/2121 movement. At the time, the first watch to use this 21.2 million calendar movement was the Audemars Piguet 55.48 million calendar. During the 15 years since then, according to data, Audemars Piguet produced 7,219 calendars. Some people believe that the launch of the Audemars Piguet Perpetual Calendar helped Audemars Piguet to survive the difficult years of the quartz crisis. The reason is that during this period, the number of Audemars Piguet employees did not decrease, but increased to nearly 300. In the 10 years from 1974 to 1984, because the Swiss watchmaking industry was very depressed, two-thirds of the watch-related employees were unemployed, but Audemars Piguet’s situation was not bad. Perhaps some of this is due to Audemars Piguet’s research. A new perpetual calendar.
One of Audemars Piguet’s most important achievements for the watch industry is based on the perpetual calendar components of the 2120/2121 movement.
Perpetual calendars based on 2120/2121 were not only used by Audemars Piguet, but also began to be used by Vacheron Constantin (previously Audemars Piguet also supplied Patek Philippe). The Vacheron Constantin version of the Jaeger-LeCoultre 920 movement is called 1120. So Vacheron Constantin can easily use Audemars Piguet’s perpetual calendar. So that’s why to this day we will see that Audemars Piguet and Vacheron Constantin have very similar perpetual calendars. Not long ago, Vacheron Constantin launched a new generation of horizontal and vertical sea calendars, including the new vertical and horizontal sea calendars. Obviously, Vacheron Constantin also uses the perpetual calendar based on Audemars Piguet. Borrowing the Vacheron Constantin movement, I would like to say a problem here. It is not a problem for Patek Philippe, Audemars Piguet, Vacheron Constantin to use Jaeger-LeCoultre, Girard-Perregaux, Blancpain and other movements. Instead, they use Jaeger-LeCoultre, Girard-Perregaux, Blancpain and other first-class watch factories The movement plays a role of mutual enhancement. At this level of watch, there is no need to consider what movement is used.
Vacheron Constantin movement 1120, and Audemars Piguet 2120/2121.
Audemars Piguet restored the 5516 perpetual calendar dial components in the new Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar. I think this is a very smart decision.
We can see that there are two biggest features of Audemars Piguet 5516. One is the flat display at 12 o’clock, and the other is the date displayed on the outer circle of the dial (indicated by a large pointer). Later, Audemars Piguet combined the date display with the 12 o’clock flat display on the perpetual calendar of 2120/2121, including Vacheron Constantin’s 11.2 million perpetual calendar. This led to the perpetual calendar of Audemars Piguet and the perpetual calendar of Vacheron Constantin being actually the same in appearance. Right now, the most important thing for a watch is recognition. Two watches ‘hitting the face’ is not a good thing. Audemars Piguet’s new Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar keeps the original 2120/2121 million calendar, and replaces the original 5516 outer circle calendar with a 52-week week calendar. It is indicated by a large pointer in the center of the dial. The Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar is unique. In the first two years, when Audemars Piguet introduced the new Royal Oak perpetual calendar with gold shells, I was wondering why a weekly calendar was added. When I saw 5516, I suddenly realized that Audemars Piguet’s new Royal Oak Perpetual Calendar is ‘history to be tested’ and ‘documented’.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak’s new all-black ceramic perpetual calendar, we can see that the watch face has returned to the 5516 style.
At present, the new Audemars Piguet Royal Oak perpetual calendar includes K gold, steel and black ceramic.
2120/2121 self-winding movement used in the new Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Black Ceramic Perpetual Calendar.
The case is sharply brushed and the hidden perpetual calendar adjustment button on the side of the case.
At this year’s Geneva watch fair, there are two of my favorite watches, one is the Lange’s calendar (this one we will talk about later), and the Audemars Piguet’s black ceramic royal oak perpetual calendar. Since Audemars Piguet has not launched all black ceramic watches (excluding offshore models) on Royal Oak before, the first launch is very stunning. This watch is a combination of the three essences of Audemars Piguet (new material, royal oak shell shape, perpetual calendar). I can predict that after a period of time, when a watch dealer gets this watch, he will definitely call this watch a ‘black warrior’. Since then, another ‘black warrior’ has been added to the domestic watch industry. I don’t use various adjectives to boast about this watch. I only provide some numbers for you. You can feel the charm of this watch yourself. 600 hours of research and development, 5 times the processing time of a conventional stainless steel Royal Oak case, 30 hours for polishing and assembly of an all-black ceramic case, and 6 hours for a steel case Royal Oak. In addition, after this watch reaches the secondary market in the future, the price will surely surpass a batch of popular gold-shell perpetual calendars. True, if you compare Audemars Piguet’s regular JULES AUDEMARS perpetual calendar with Patek Philippe, Patek Philippe will undoubtedly have an advantage (Paké Philippe is really a master of the perpetual calendar, playing with pointers, windows, retrograde various perpetual calendars), but ‘Black Samurai’ comes on the field The battle situation is not so simple.