Monday, March 31, 2014

De Bethune - My New Hero

De Bethune is a brand I am new to and the more I learn about the brand, the more I am liking it. Recently, The Hourglass hosted a luncheon to introduce the DB28 Digitale and the Dream Watch 5.

But I was busy busy busy and therefore had no time to post about the event. Only now having returned from a long trip do I have time to sit down and enjoy my hobby again. The lunch was hosted at Garibaldis and a rather small group of collectors and press. Here, is Pierre Jacques with Jim and Timmy with Prof Harry Tan in the background.
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And while we were waiting for lunch to start and admire the new releases, I had the chance to admire someone's first generation De Bethune DB8 mono pusher chrono. The signature tear-drop lugs of De Bethune. 45 minute counter at six with the centre sweeping seconds. Beautifully finished - another feature of the brand.
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And when the lunch started, the watches were rotated around the table. Appearing in front of me was the perpetual calendars.
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The trio was mesmerizing and I love the way De Bethune does the perpetual calendars. Only a few brands display them the way they do - using windows instead of sub-dials. I find the windows easier to read whereas sub-dials if not properly done crowds the entire dial.
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First the DB16QP. This is the rose gold version of the perpetual calendar. Very legible and beautifully crafted. Another signature of the brand is the three dimensional moon at twelve.
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And the open case back displaying the calibre DB2509 manual winding movement with a 4 day power reserve. The boomerang bridge is another signature of the brand.
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And a special Limited Edition salmon dial version of the DB25QP.
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A closer look at the salmon dial version. According to Pierre, salmon dials will only be used for their platinum series and will be limited.
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The timepiece comes with an automatic Calibre DB 2324QP with 5 days power reserve. And for a watch that is 44mm, it wears comfortably as the lugs are another special feature of De Bethune.
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And now, the pièce de résistance… The DB29 mono pusher chronograph tourbillon. The mono pusher chrono has a centre display - very unusual and definitely more complicated to make. And then to add a tourbillon? Well if this is not complicated, I don't know what is.
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The timepiece comes with a hunter case. The tourbillon is featured at the back. As with all DB timepieces, they are immaculately finished.
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The dial features a 24 hours chrono indicator, 60 minute counter and also a 60 seconds counter. The minutes hand indicator is a rose gold hand but I had not activated the chrono function and therefore it is hidden behind the blue seconds hand.
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Then the feature of the event - the DB28 Digitale. Another unusual display - a digital hour indicator at twelve and a three dimensional moon at the centre. The minute indicator is a revolving disc. The dial is a hand-guilloché barleycorn motif - flawless in my opinion. Crown is found at the twelve.
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A closer look at the window between nine and three features a blue sky depiction complete with stars. The moon is right at the centre with a two hemisphere three dimensional moon - one in palladium and the other flame-blued steel.
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The back features the Calibre DB 2144 which is a manual winding in-house movement featuring a 5 day power reserve. The level of finishing it outstanding - I have come to expect nothing less from De Bethune.
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The Dream Watch 5 was also unveiled but due to the conditions in the restaurant, I was not able to take a decent shot. Not that these are good shots but under the circumstances and with a point and shoot, that's the best I could muster.

The Dream Watch series brings horology to a different level - reinterpretation of what horology is to De Bethune with a twist of art. With DW 5, the artistic side of De Bethune comes alive in their creation playing with shapes and complications. For more information, please visit www.debethune.ch.

For me, the DB29 Maxichrono was the highlight, not that I can afford it. Pricing is always an issue when it comes to De Bethune. Definitely out of my reach. But I still hope - hope that one day I will own a De Bethune. In the meantime, I continue to dream that someone out there might be kind enough to present me one as a gift. Wishful thinking but then again, who knows.

Thanks to The Hourglass for hosting the event.