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The Millennium Watch Book
Glashütte Original - The Exception Made in Germany

Glashütte Original The Exception Made in Germany

The comeback by Glashütte Original’s SeaQ is thus nothing short of exceptional: an atypical piece that marks the welcome and unlooked-for return of a sporty chic segment to German watchmaking

In the summer of 2019, a few select guests gathered in Glashütte near Dresden to discover Glashütte Original’s latest releases. Historically, Glashütte is the home turf of the largest German watchmakers, and Glashütte Original has been firmly rooted there since 1845, but Made in Germany dive watches had long been consigned to the depths of history — until the SeaQ made its unexpected comeback. 

An Overdue Renewal 

The SeaQ isn’t just a watch: it’s a whole a new collection that itself is part of a new pillar for Glashütte Original, known as Spezialist. You don’t need to be an expert to notice straight away that the collection includes technical pieces that also comply with the local style guide — in particular the perennial three-quarter plate. 

The SeaQ embodies all this and much more besides. Indeed, the watch revives a fading memory: that of a brand which back in the 19th century designed and produced a small number of navigational instruments, sea chronometers, observation watches and dive watches. Moreover, strictly speaking the SeaQ is not a new creation, but a fresh reinterpretation (with two variations) of a model released in 1969 developed especially for recreational diving, the Spezimatic Type RP TS 200.

The Exception Made in Germany

Glashütte Original SeaQ 1969 © Glashütte Original

A Highly Limited Inaugural Edition 

The SeaQ 1969 draws its inspiration very directly from this watch. The historical name is evident on the dial, accompanied by the number of jewels — a detail which in the past bore witness to the complexity of the movement and thus to its exclusiveness. The period timepiece also bore the word Shockproof and this too is be found on the new edition. The ‘old radium’ beige hue on the Arabic numerals and hour-markers and the green of the hands are also the same as on the legacy version. On its release, this extremely limited edition (69 watches with the 39-11 calibre and a diameter of 39.5mm) sparked renewed interest in period timepieces still on the pre-owned market, the price of which immediately skyrocketed. Glashütte Original launched an unlimited edition at the same time, too, albeit shorn of these historical references.

Aquatic Panorama 

The collection also includes the unlimited SeaQ Date Panorama. This features a large date display: a full-blown watch complication comprising two date discs, one for tens and the other for units, with the combination of the two resulting in a much larger than average display window and thus better readability. 

Housed in a case with a generous diameter of 43.2mm, the SeaQ Date Panorama is based on a variation of Calibre 36, the mainstay movement in Glashütte Original collections. This tried and tested movement has a silicon hairspring and more significantly, a power reserve surpassing that of most other dive watches: 100 hours, or more than four days. Other details are sure to enthuse genuine divers, too: the timepiece is certified water-resistant to 300 metres and comes on an adjustable strap with 8 positions — with an additional rubber strap supplied as standard.

This year GMT Magazine and WorldTempus have embarked on the ambitious project of summarising the divers watch since 2000 in The Millennium Watch Book - Divers watch, a big, beautifully laid out coffee table book. This article is an extract. The Millennium Watch Book - Divers watch is available in both French and English here:

 

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Glashütte Original is the rightful heir to Germany’s 170 years of legacy in the art of watchmaking. Glashütte Original is an authentic high-end manufactory that outfits all of its watches with in-house developed and made movements.

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