Piaget’s Latest Self Winding Minute Reader (The Piaget Emperador Coussin XL) – A Masterpiece in Complexity and Flatness

A serious watch enthusiast would already be familiar with a Minute Repeater. The term refers to a watch that can chime the time at the push or slide of a button. Considered to be one of the most challenging watch complications, these masterpieces of micro-precision and engineering are coveted today, by watch collectors and lovers around the world. Only a master watchmaker can craft a minute repeater movement so delicate and dangerously complicated. The steel gong discs, hammers and the complex rack-and-snail gear system enable the watch to determine the time and convey it using distinct chiming sounds.

When it comes to telling the time, the repeaters come in varying degrees of time telling precision and complexity. While the simpler quarter repeaters merely strike the hours and quarters, the minute repeaters can chime the time down to the minute by using distinct sounds for the hours, quarters and even minutes.

A mean task to accomplish by any means, but Piaget has raised the bar even higher. Emperador Coussin Ultra-Thin Minute Repeater is Piaget’s latest self-winding minute repeater, and it is the thinnest of its kind in the world. The caliber 1290P movement in this masterpiece is only 4.8mm thin. The watch itself is beautifully sleek at a mere 9.4mm thickness. Achieving this thinness means designing incredibly flat components, with many gears being only fractionally thicker than a human hair at 0.12mm. Such a compact model leaves no room for assembly or manufacturing error. Such a high-precision assembly of the minute repeater gear train in unbelievable low clearances between all components, including the watch hands must be monitored and adjusted manually. This makes the Piaget Emperador Coussin XL, one of the most labor and time intensive watches to manufacture.

Piaget specializes in creating super-flat movements and has set many world records in constructing ultra-thin watches. The secret behind this lies in their use of a micro-rotor as the oscillating mass for winding the watch. The highly efficient custom Piaget micro-rotor is constructed of platinum and bears the Piaget coat-of-arms engraving.

However, the finesse and flatness of the movement would amount to nothing, unless complemented with superior acoustics. In this case however, Piaget has fitted into this ultra-thin watch, a 64 dB of loudness that can be heard over ordinary conversations. The construction of the case greatly affects the sound quality of repeater watches. Just like the watch, the case of too is a masterpiece in complexity- designed to be as this as possible. The case of the Emperador Coussin Ultra-Thin contains a total of 69 parts and has the movement suspended inside it on four braces.

Despite the sleek profile and elegant lines, this wonderfully designed watch claims to be water resistant up to 2 atmospheres. However, if you are lucky enough to own such a gorgeously complicated and technically distinguished watch, we wouldn’t recommend taking it to the shower.

The Piaget Emperador Coussin XL is 43mm in diameter and comes in 18K rose gold. The sapphire crystal in the world’s thinnest self-winding minute repeater allows full visibility- front and back. The elegant strap is brown alligator leather with a 18k rose gold clasp.

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