INTRODUCING: Hublot Big Bang Integral Minute Repeater Ceramic
That’s right, you read that correctly. A ceramic minute repeater. Who would have thought anything other than precious metals would serve as ideal transmitters for pristine chimes? But then again, it’s Hublot, from whom we’ve come to expect the unexpected.
In CEO Ricardo Guadalupe’s words, “Hublot is pushing the limits of fine watchmaking far, very far. But as always, we do not see it as a zenith: it is a milestone which, in turn, will open up new horizons leading us to other horological explorations.”
Before we continue, we should preface this by saying we have yet to hear the Big Bang Integral Minute Repeater Ceramic in the flesh (its makers tout a “clear and powerful sound”). But the fact that it has even been attempted at all, is a feat worth celebrating.
If you’re familiar with ceramic, you’ll know it’s a notoriously difficult material to use in watchmaking, both in terms of machining and finishing. And, as Hublot has declared on numerous occasions, obtaining a homogenous colour requires nothing short of extreme precision firing in the kiln.
Ensuring water resistance is another issue, no thanks to the difficulty of working with ceramic, which affects the case design. In fact, the temperamental nature of ceramic means there’s no turning back—once you make a mistake, it’s back to square one. All these traits make the Hublot Big Bang Integral Minute Repeater Ceramic a miracle in itself, and a testament to the tenacity and creativity of its watchmakers.
Furthermore, brand has decided to include an in-house tourbillon in the timepiece—a first for the Big Bang Integral collection (and we don’t think it’ll be the last)—and comes with an impressive 80-hour power reserve.
Available in two colour options—black or white—with 18 pieces each, this is also the first time a Big Bang Integral Ceramic has been made in black. The 43mm timepieces beat to the Calibre MHUB801, which you can see through the openworked dial and caseback. At CHF280,000 a pop, the Hublot Big Bang Integral Minute Repeater Ceramic is by no means affordable for the average Joe. But that doesn’t stop us from admiring the sheer courage it takes to create a timepiece that challenges the boundaries of traditional watchmaking.
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