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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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 !
 

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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. :)
 

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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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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.
 

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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.
 

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^^^
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.
 

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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.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
--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.
On the minutes adjust I am on the same track.
The minutes hand advances to the next minute and then there IS a quick-shift available.
But because the watch is less than 20s per-year in error and the crown was pulled 30s (as indicated by watch) before the hour it is not needed for the normal 'New Years Day' adjust. I thought that describing it as a 'New Years Day task' was a good marketing approach.

I like 3 button adjust
>middle 'crown' can be pushed in (spring) or pulled out (stay put). Pull out for time adjust
>outer pushers used for advance and retard (ie time-zone hour-shift or minute-adjust when middle one pulled out).
This is very simple for all normal tasks, but could implement things like date-reset in a complicated way.
I normally wear a Skagen Hybrid that works with 3 buttons. It only cost me £90 and is a very nice watch, lovely simple dial !

Totally agree about calendar, lots of watches have their faces ruined by ugly date-apertures which 90% of users can not be bothered to make work.
My ideal is perpetual with 'Lange and Sohnne' type of big date.

Inductive-charging sounds good so long as it is easy to change the battery when it wears out. Or a CR2016 which is reliable should last a long time
 

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What is this date-reset you speak about?

PC doesn't need touching until 2100.
And quartz won't stop. But it's still plausible to need a date adjust if one travels...unless you're throwing in a more complex time zone adjust, that will account for date line crossings.



Totally agree about calendar, lots of watches have their faces ruined by ugly date-apertures which 90% of users can not be bothered to make work.
My ideal is perpetual with 'Lange and Sohnne' type of big date.

Inductive-charging sounds good so long as it is easy to change the battery when it wears out. Or a CR2016 which is reliable should last a long time
My favorite date indicator right now is probably the new Nomos Tangente Update.





I like panorama date windows too, as you often have more flexibility in position than with a conventional date wheel. With a center-seconds watch, you can also do a date subdial at 6. Or you can go a bi-compax approach with 2 subdials, small seconds and date.

Battery...a 2016 isn't rechargeable. And I don't care if it lasts 5 years...it's out. :) Cell phone batteries are good for several years these days, and that's even with near-daily charging. My preference is battery life over things like the history. I want my 2 months plus per charge, at minimum...and Citizen routinely gets 6 months per. IF the history features can be done while retaining at least 2 months, ok. 100 charge cycles at 2 months, that's 15 years. Swap out the battery at that point...ok, also check to see if any service is needed. That's worth a trip back to the factory at that point. And cell phone batteries are good for more than 100 charge cycles.
 

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And quartz won't stop. But it's still plausible to need a date adjust if one travels...unless you're throwing in a more complex time zone adjust, that will account for date line crossings.
IAHH takes care of travel, including date changes.

Apart from a catastrophic failure (in which case it's kaput anyway), I don't expect my ecodrive to stop.
Only maybe if I bother servicing it, but I'm sure the factory will be kind enough to set the time before shipping it back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
IAHH takes care of travel, including date changes.

Apart from a catastrophic failure (in which case it's kaput anyway), I don't expect my ecodrive to stop.
Only maybe if I bother servicing it, but I'm sure the factory will be kind enough to set the time before shipping it back.
I thought that we all agreed that it it was bad that if date setup was corrupted (ie during battery change ) the watch had to go back to manufacturer (new Longines VHP is like this).
On old VHP the user could check and modify the date setup (ie date in leap-year cycle).

In principle I like the idea of wireless charging, eco-drive etc. but they all include a re-chargeable battery (spring-drive ?).
I worry that after about 15years the watch will stop because the battery has worn out and repair will be a problem.
Fitting a CR2016 every 5 years and being able to buy one in 15 years time worries me a lot less !
 

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Citizen Europe says that lab tests show an Eco Drive charge cell should retain 80% charge after 20 years. And this is from the German Citizen site from 2007...charging systems and battery life have only gotten better. I concede there's more potential that your watch could become orphaned, but that says, go with a major player like Citizen or Seiko.

On resetting the date yourself...yes, it's preferable, for sure. But only if it's not cluttering up basic function, or adding too many more pushers. AND, if it's not risking completely messing things up. It shouldn't, I'll grant. There's several approaches...like using NFC and a smartphone app that lets you reset time and date quickly, but is usually not active. (Why waste battery?) Or Bluetooth, which would allow a Windows/Mac program as well. Bluetooth's easy to add to a desktop. Or maybe it's a couple discreet and discrete pushers that blend into a shapely mid-case. I don't think there's a best or even preferable solution, even just speaking for my own tastes. And in general...I guarantee there isn't. :)
 

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IMO for an analogue watch,an app would be useful for history and time setting. I do not see changing a battery every 5 or more years as arduous,as I do own more than one HAQ watch.
 

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I don't want to open the caseback, or lose the calendar settings. When it's not a perp cal, the battery change is less of a problem...but still, if I don't have to crack the seal, I won't. But it's all cool. None of us really expects to get every feature we'd want the most, so it's all a matter of what we consider important. Hey, we have an 18 month wait, what else we gonna do? :)
 
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My ideal watch has to have technology, but it has to be iconic in looks and functions. The technology part to me is pretty straight forward, solar, Bluetooth connectivity to allow the phone or watch to set the time and complications, TC, perp cal, accuracy equivalent to the 50ms Apple watch.

As fas as watch design I wish that Citizen, Seiko, or Breitling would step up their game. I would happily spend 10k if Citizen went to their Arnold and Son division, and made Hornet World Timer with the above technology. I'd pay 5k for a watch similar to a Breitling World Time or JLC Geophysic Universal Time, with the above features. World time handles all those pesky travel and time zone problems.

Although I respect the technology in the GS, Chronomaster, and VHP, I just find them to be some what bland or boring in both style and complications.
 

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If Breitling wasn’t walking away from quartz, they could build my perfect watch pretty much off the shelf.

B78 SQ movement (proven in the B1 and Airwolf, still ticking in the fugly Chrono Military)

43mm titanium case with simple counting bezel like Aerospace, no slide rule

Pro III bracelet

100m WR (we know they can seal pushers to 100m WR)
 
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