A.Lange & Sohne – DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN

by D Constant on April 11, 2012

in A. Lange & Sohne, Designer Watch Reviews, Exclusive Watch Reviews, Latest Reviews, Product Information

THE NEW BENCHMARK IN CHRONOGRAPH DESIGN

DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN

For more than a decade, A. Lange & Söhne’s DATOGRAPH was considered by many to be the quintessential chronograph. On the one hand, it was because of its technical features, on the other because of the unparalleled harmony of its dial. With a number of enhancements, Lange’s engineers are now proving that excellence can be taken a step further. With a power reserve extended to 60 hours, a power-reserve indicator, and a proprietary oscillation system, the new DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN shines in a platinum case enlarged to a diameter of 41 millimetres.

When it was first presented in 1999, the A. Lange & Söhne DATOGRAPH already attracted global attention. With its sophisticated technology and subtly balanced design, it clearly stood out from the masses of timepieces with stopwatch functions. The classic column-wheel calibre with a precisely jumping minute counter and flyback function united the cardinal virtues of an exemplary chronograph in a movement of peerless mechanical eloquence and aesthetic appeal.

The new DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN embodies all these features as well. Additionally, Lange’s engineers and product designers worked intensely to refine it further. What meets the eye first is the larger case. With a diameter increased to 41 millimetres, this timepiece gains extra prominence on the wrist. The patented outsize date in the twin gold-framed aperture assures excellent legibility. The aperture of the date display was adjusted to match the bigger size of the case. It was enlarged by four per cent to preserve the balanced proportions of the dial architecture.

The luminous hour and minute hands are made of rhodiumed gold. The hands in the subsidiary dials are crafted from blued steel. The tachometer scale along the circumference of the main dial adds a subtly dynamic touch to the personality of this remarkable watch. Rhodiumed gold baton hour markers on the dial – they replace the former Roman numerals II, VI, and X – emphasize its clear design Among many other technical refinements, the DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN features the comfortable but technically complex flyback function found only in very few chronographs. Originating from the early days of aviation, this mechanism makes it possible to perform instantly consecutive time measurements by combining three steps – stop, reset, restart – into one: One single push of a button will stop and reset the DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN in the middle of an ongoing time measurement. When the button is released, a new time measurement is initiated immediately.

The sapphire-crystal case back reveals one of the technically most immaculate and also most beautiful chronograph movements ever made. It allows the owner to observe the most interesting of the many mechanical processes and artisanal subtleties. All surfaces are meticulously finished by hand. Four screwed gold chatons visually accentuate the micromechanical artistry of this opus. Thus, the apotheosis of time measurement presents itself anew at the state of the art.

All parts of the movement are lavishly decorated. The plates and bridges, made of untreated German silver, are finished with perlage and ribbing. All edges are chamfered and polished. This also applies to the spring of the whiplash precision index adjuster and the classic column wheel. The balance cock is manually engraved with a free-hand technique, making each DATOGRAPH UP/DOWN a one-of-a-kind watch.

 

Technical Details – Model in platinum Reference 405.035

Movement: Calibre L951.6. Manually wound.

Chronograph with flyback and precisely jumping minute counter.

Patented outsize date.

UP/DOWN power-reserve indicator,

60 hours power reserve.

Dial: Solid silver, black/argenté,

hour markers at 3, 6, 9 and 12 o’clock luminous.

Hands: Rhodiumed gold and blued steel, hour and minute hands luminous.

Case: Platinum

Diameter 41.0 mm.

Height 13.1 mm.

Sapphire-crystal glass and caseback.

Hand-stitched crocodile strap.

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