The boundaries of watch-making have been pushed again by Urwerk, the experimental watch company which I am a huge fan of with their rotating disc’s or cubes to tell the time have released another stunner the EMC Black.
Coated in black PVD for a sleek industrial look trying to conceal its hefty size but this certainly doesn’t shy away it has real presence on the wrist especially at 43mm wide and 51mm tall, the cool matte PVD look really does make the yellow and white text of the sub dials jump out at you.
There is no main dial on this piece just four sub dials to show all you need, clockwise round starting from top left is a patented performance indicator that displays if the movement is running fast or slow from -20 to +20 nestled next to it is the seconds dial with a gorgeous looking counter balanced hand, below it the Hour and minutes dial with only 3, 6, 9, 12 numbers that reminds me of an aeronautics instrument ,a power reserve indicator for up to 80 hours is nestled in the bottom corner .despite the EMC missing most of the conventional features date window, crono dials etc. The dial layout works well, The EMC piece du resistance is the manual winding generator tucked into the side of the case this is the giveaway that the EMC is unlike anything seen before in haute horology.
EMC stands for Electro Mechanical Control, the Urwerk full in-house movement is coupled with an integrated circuit board so upon winding the handle the wearer can for the first time ever in a watch adjust the timing rate to suit perfectly their own needs with a small screw on the reverse.
Here’s an abstracted from the Urwerk press release from co-founder Martin Frei to explain it.
“EMC is an ode to the mechanical Watch and craft of the Watch maker,” “The mechanical Watch Is a sensitive organism and the timing rate of its movement Can fluctuate due to several factor. These changes of pace and performance Can easily be detected by a watchmaker, a professional who is armed with the equipment necessary for testing the accuracy of the movement.
“However, it is rare for an amateur to have these tools. But with the EMC, an amateur can have them and is able to dive into the heart of their watch, to see it live and evolve. And we even give the owner a chance to interact with it by allowing them to adjust its timing rate to better suit their daily rhythm and pace of life.”
“A mechanical watch can reach stunning levels of chronometric performance in a perfect environment, But only if it exists in its own little bubble, protected from external knocks, at a constant temperature.
However, that is simply not practical. After all, a watch’s raison d’être is being on its owner’s wrist, about how its wearer interacts with it. So we looked at the problem counter-intuitively and gave the wearer – the very person responsible for disrupting its movement’s timing rate – the key to correcting it. It is man’s hand that perfects the mechanics and opens the doors to an infinite power of adaptation.”
This is the result of 6 years of research and development and is truly a different kind of movement, limited to only 55 pieces worldwide at a price of $126,000.
I am a real fan of Watch brands that continue to push the boundaries of horology and refuse to conform to what others think is normal, and i admire Urwerk greatly for that this piece is superb, a real blend of horology and engineering coupled with a world first of being able to set the timing on your own piece. For more info, please visit urwerk.com
John Galt – Contributing Editor
John Galt caught the horology bug 4 years ago on his first visit to a London watch show and has snowballed since; John has become an avid writer and blogger of timepieces of all kinds, from everyday timepieces to modern Luxury Haute Horology, his favorite brands being HYT and Greubel Forsey that push the bounders of modern watch-making. John keeps a keen interest in the UK watch scene with their many emerging brands and timepiece’s. John Galt currently contributes watch related articles for online publications in the UK and USA. You can follow John on Twitter @johng73Read his articles here.