Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Off-Centered Chronograph Black Onyx
In 2019, Jaquet Droz renewed the Grande Seconde Chronograph collection by introducing a top-end option in gold showcasing a standard layout (i.e., with the figure-eight registers aligned alongside the vertical axis crossing the marker at twelve). The brand also introduced three options in steel sporting an off-centered layout whose displacement is rotated by thirty degrees, clockwise. If you ask me to summarize the Grande Seconde Chronograph collection, I'd answer the gold version, which we took our hands-on, preserves the Grande Seconde signature design, while the others broaden the Grande Seconde Off-Centered dial offering. The collection finally welcomes a new piece, embellished with a black onyx dial.
Onyx is rare in watchmaking, today, it was trendy in the seventies and eighties, and is now pretty sought after especially when paired to a gold case. The black onyx, mainly, gives the dial a mind-blowing lure both in tone and appeal; the choice to match it to steel case is a smart option that allows, also, to keep the retail price competitive. Jaquet Droz offers a handful of Grande Seconde Off-Centered watches with the onyx dial; the chronograph adds to other pieces, sized at 39mm and 43mm. With this new timepiece, Jaquet Droz confirms the attention to details: first, the skeletonized gold oscillating weight, although it is not new, is always an eye-catcher: here is the Skelet-One's legacy and that's a great plus.
Gold is king, once again: in gray satin-finished gold is the ring surrounding hours and minutes hands, but there's more to prove the tireless attention to details introduced with this new collection. By taking a look at the central second hand and the pairing thirty-minute Chrono hand, you'll notice that they both feature a round end-tip. The former is hollowed, while the latter is solid instead. By zero-resetting both hands, the contrast between the two is visible. Sweeping below the thirty-minute register is the pointer hand of the retrograde date counter, whose end tip is red (lacquered) and thin. From a mechanical standpoint, the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Off-Centered Chronograph Black Onyx adopts the renewed column-wheel and silicon balance spring Jaquet Droz 26M5R caliber whose bridges feature beautiful Geneva Stripes all across. To sum it up, the Jaquet Droz Grande Seconde Off-Centered Chronograph Black Onyx is proof positive of how a simple dial option, and a list of thoroughly-thought details, turn a product variant into kind of a new watch.
(Photo credit: courtesy of Jaquet Droz)
Gaetano C @Horbiter®