In just a short amount of time Harry Winston wristwatches have imposed themselves as an avant garde pioneer in highly complicated watches.
The Opus series being the perfect example of this. Its concept is simple yet revolutionary. Each year, Harry Winston collaborates with an independent watchmaker giving them an outstanding opportunity to benefit from the recognition of the prestigious brand while it allows Harry Winston to produce superb timepieces using the skills and knowledge of the most brilliant new talents in the industry. With the Opus series, Harry Winston has collaborated with watchmakers such as Francois-Paul Journe, Vianney Halter, Greubel Forsey and, in this instance, Christophe Claret.
This particular watch, the Opus 4, was produced in 2004 and is one of the most complicated Opus models ever produced. It features a minute repeater with cathedral gongs, a tourbillon, date and moon-phases. A minute repeater is regarded as one of the most prestigious complications. A distinction can be made between the "standard" version and the cathedral version. The second one, which is found on only a very few pieces, is characterized by gongs which are twice as long, allowing them to circle the movement twice. The cathedral gongs produce a much richer sound. The quality of the sound is further enhanced by the generous proportions of the 44 mm case, and its thickness, calculated to a hundredth of a millimetre.
Christophe Claret is widely recognised as a master of minute repeaters and it was natural for Harry Winston to collaborate with him on this complication.
Another striking characteristic of the Opus 4 is the design of the case. It pays tribute to the Premier collection of Harry Winston and, more importantly, it has a fully rotating case. This allows its owner to decide which one of the two dials he would like to admire. The first one displays the time, the tourbillon and the repeating mechanism and the second dial shows the time and date with very large moon-phase indication.
This remarkable piece has a movement composed of 423 parts with 40 white sapphires replacing the standard red rubies. The Opus 4 was produced in a very limited edition of only 18 pieces.
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