Depth: Patek Philippe Advanced Research Series
The Patek Philippe Advanced Research Program attempts to maintain a perfect balance of watchmaking craftsmanship while maintaining respect for craftsmanship. Patek Philippe created the Advanced Research Program as a continuation of its own initiative by Ulysse Nardin, Rolex, Swatch Group and CSEM (Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology).
The goal of the group is to explore the benefits of using silicon components in the watchmaking industry. After seeing the huge advantages that silicon must provide, Patek Philippe decided to continue the research and application of materials internally. Patek Philippe has since released five watches under the Advanced Research Project, each of which has brought innovation to its previous watches.
The enhancements gained from advanced research programs are huge. Silicon as a material-Patek Philippe uses a specific mixture called Silinvar-which is significantly harder and more corrosion resistant than steel. It is very smooth and does not require lubricants, so it can make watch parts last longer. In addition, its lighter weight-making it more impact resistant-is not affected by magnetism.
The efficiency and durability brought by Silinvar improve the watch’s power reserve, timing accuracy, and extend the maintenance interval. Although it can be said that using machined silicon instead of hand-made parts can eliminate some of the charm of the watch, it cannot be said that the performance of the watch does not benefit greatly from it.
Advanced Research models are extremely collectible because they are produced in limited quantities and are an important part of the larger Patek Philippe story. In order to fully appreciate the work done in the program, you need to appreciate the watch it was born. Below we will have a deeper understanding of the 5350 calendar and the 55.5 million calendar.
Ten years after the first annual calendar came out, Patek Philippe further innovated on its patented watches. In 2006, the 5350 calendar was launched, which is the second advanced research model. It is worth noting that this is the only rose gold advanced research model. It is this choice of metal that makes the 5350 the warmest and most classic model among Advanced Research models.
The case is friendly and curved, with almost no sharp edges-as if shaped by clay. The dial is silver metallic, with a satin finish from twelve to six. The silver dial contrasts sharply with the rose gold hands and hour markers and increases the clarity of the watch. The even surface treatment of the metal increases the beauty of precision and machining and balances the organic look of the high quality fake watch.
The annual calendar displays the hours, minutes and seconds, as well as the date and month on the concave small dials on the left and right, the power reserve at 12 o’clock, and the crescent phase and date window below the pointer at 6 o’clock. . Considering the amount of information it displays, the dial is well balanced. Although the dial is beautiful, it does not convey the uniqueness of this timepiece.
Looking at the back cover of the watch, you will quickly discover what makes this watch stand out among similar products. “Patek Phillipe Advanced Research” and a built-in magnifying glass are printed around the crystal, which proudly highlight the innovation of silicon. Although I like the spirit of words and magnifying glass, realization is my least favorite watch function. Both look a bit like what one would expect to see on a prototype product. In other words, this is just a small problem. I still think the 5350 is the best-looking Advanced Research watch.
Equipped with 324S IRN QA LU movement to power the watch, this is a full-rotor automatic winding annual calendar. Thanks to the advanced research program, it is also equipped with Silinvar escape wheel and Gyromax Balance. It has now been used in many references of Patek Philippe, and this is the brand’s first watch with this new hairspring. Both silicon parts have a light blue gray, which stands out from the more traditional materials in the movement. Silicon enhancement not only makes the watch perform better, but also firmly cements its position in Patek Philippe’s history. This combination makes it a highly collectible timepiece.
55.5 million calendar
The 55.5 million annual calendar was released in 2011 and is also based on 300 pieces and the reference number 5140. In addition to the time of day, the watch also has a 24-hour display, day, month and date, as well as leap year display and moon display. stage. This watch is housed in a fully polished platinum case with a metal satin dial. The combination of the silver dial color scheme and the platinum case makes the technical appearance complement this innovative watch. The gold hands and index plate add warmth and personality to the dial, making the dial look more sterile.
The 5550 is powered by 240 Q Si power with automatic winding and has completed the pioneering work of the 5550 Advanced Research Program. The movement utilizes all previous advanced research and innovation techniques. Silinvar escapement wheel, Spiromax hairspring, Silinvar lever and GyromaxSi balance wheel together constitute what Patek Philippe calls Oscillomax silicon balance wheel and escapement. All these Silinvar components can work together to form an extremely efficient and robust watch. The improvement that can prove this is the power reserve, the power consumption of this watch is 70 hours, while the standard movement 240 is 48 hours.
I think the watch also solves the problem of improper label implementation. Patek Philippe cheap did not border the case back with the case, but placed Advanced Research on the dial in the classic Patek Philippe font. On the back, you can still get the built-in magnifying glass, but you will also find the “Oscillomax” that happens to be carved on the bridge. This watch is the end of Patek Philippe’s pursuit of excellence, not the end of this book. An integral part of Patek Philippe’s history, it also shows you the future prospects of watchmaking, whether you like it or not.