I wrote a first preview on this watch, when it was announced in September 2021.
Here is the link to the article:
We'll see the two points I had in mind when I saw the first official photos and heard the sound file about this Reverso, now.
1/ The aesthetics.
One of the most impressive assets of this new Reverso Minute Repeater is its proportions. Ok we are far from the small chiming Reverso from 1994, but this last opus is much smaller than the Reverso Minute Repeater à Rideau from 2011 ( 51, 1 x 31 mm versus 55 x 35 mm ) and thinner, too ( 11, 41 mm versus 12 mm ).
The design and the look of the recto dial is very close to the " A Rideau ", that's clear, and that's a good thing as it is a magnificent watch. Aerial, precious, refined. Very pleasant.
The verso dial is way different, compared to the " A Rideau ". More aerial, even more refined, at least in my opinion. Well done. You will notice the different colors of the hands, white for the recto, golden for the verso. I can advance an explanation or a guess on the white hands on the recto: The legibility, but this is the only reserve I have, here.
All I can say is that this is the kind of watch I prefer in real life rather than in pictures.
2/ The sound.
My main interrogation was about the way this new Reverso Minute Repeater sounded. The sound file was promising, but we are always prudent, as recording a chiming watch doesn't always give a faithful idea about the sound.
It is not easy to describe a tonality, a sound. For example, I found that the Reverso Minute Repeater à Rideau was a bit too aggressive. It was the beginning of the Trebuchet hammers, first used in the Duomètre à Grande Sonnerie in 2009, and in the Master Grande Tradition one year after.
Since then, Jaeger Lecoultre mastered this technology, and now, the sound is much richer and rounder. A delight for the ears. And it is a quite remarkable outcome given the restrained proportions of the case.
3/ General thoughts.
Tribute Minute Repeater is an excellent name, due to the fact that, from 1994 to 2021, Jaeger Lecoultre made a couple of Reverso Minute Repeaters. It reminds us of that fact, and rightly so.
The Reverso Minute Repeater from 1994,
The Reverso Minute Repeater à Rideau from 2011.
I really like the way Jaeger Lecoultre mastered the proportions of this watch without ruining its acoustical qualities, it is really challenging and they won, in that game, in my opinion, at least.
I just regret three things: First, the fact that they only offered it in rose gold. They could also make a short batch in white gold, to give the choice to those who are interested in these watches.
Then, they really could make it in a bigger limited edition. 10 is really small. 25 in rose gold, 25 in white gold would have been perfect.
And last, the Cal 944 could have a longer power reserve than just 35 hours...
Still, it is a very nice object. And let's not forget that there are not many rectangular minute repeaters!
Looking forward to reading your comments and thoughts,