Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar – WATCH NEWS

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar is the first annual calendar to leave the brand’s Manufactory. Based on first impressions, this elegant model is destined to make legions of horophiles whoop with delight.

There are three types of calendar watch.

The complete calendar

The ‘complete calendar’, or ‘full calendar’, typically displays the day of the week, the date, the month and, of course, the time. Sometimes, these watches are also equipped with a moon phase display.

If the preceding month has less than 31 days, the wearer will need to manually correct the date and month indication where applicable.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The annual calendar

An annual calendar can be a full or partial calendar. It displays the correct date throughout most of the year, recognising those months which have 30 and 31 days and automatically adjusting the date accordingly. However, at the end of February, the wearer has to manually correct the date and month indication where applicable.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The perpetual calendar

A perpetual calendar typically displays the days, date, month and leap year. It may also display the moon phase. In some cases, it may include additional indications such as the sunrise and sunset in a particular location or an equation of time.

What differentiates a perpetual calendar from other calendar watches is that the complication can take into account the exact number of days in every month whether it is a ‘common year’ or a ‘leap year’. The only proviso is that the date will require adjustment in 2100, 2200 and 2300. Inevitably, this will prompt the question, why?

If a year is divisible by 4 and the remainder is zero, it is invariably a leap year. However, this is not always the case. For example, 2100 is a common year, containing 365 days, not a leap year as you might expect. Therefore, the wearer will need to manually correct the date as the movement will wrongly assume it is a leap year.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The first perpetual calendar is attributed to London watchmaker, Thomas Mudge who produced his ingenious timepiece in the late 1770s. By comparison, the annual calendar is a youngster, appearing on the watch scene in the 20th century.

Glashütte Original, the high-end watch company from Saxony is no stranger to the perpetual calendar mechanism. Indeed, the brand already offers the Senator Excellence Perpetual Calendar, a watch equipped with the highly desirable complication.

However, the German marque has just released its first annual calendar, the Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar. This new model necessitated the creation of a new movement, the Calibre 92. Typical of the Glashütte-based firm, the self-winding movement is beautifully presented. The three-quarter plate is appointed with Glashütte ribbing, bevelled edges and blued screws. Moreover, the hand-engraved balance cock showcases the brand’s artisanal prowess. 

The dial features a small seconds, moon phase and the brand’s legendary, large-format ‘panorama date’. However, the pièce de résistance is undoubtedly the fabulous retrograde month display. This indication is shown on an arcing track positioned between 3 and 6 o’clock. The prevailing month is shown with crisp numerals, succinct and highly legible.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar is housed in a 42mm case, formed of 18K red gold 5N or platinum. This latter version comes with a skeletonised dial which affords sight of numerous components usually hidden from view.

Once again, with the advent of the Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar, the German marque has demonstrated its design prowess along with its remarkable mechanical virtuosity.

The brand’s press release

The premiere of a new movement is a big event for a manufactory. Glashütte Original is especially pleased to present not only an exclusive movement and a new timepiece, but to add another complication to its portfolio as well: the annual calendar. The PanoMaticCalendar with Calibre 92 is dedicated to the great and small highlights of life, and marks a milestone in the history of the Saxon watchmaker. The automatic movement with annual calendar, moon phase and Panorama Date has been completely rethought. The result? A modern, elegant and original mechanical timepiece, destined to be worn and appreciated every day.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

A contemporary complication

Developed at the end of the 20th century, the annual calendar complication is a relatively recent addition to the art of watchmaking. It displays the day and month, taking into account the months with 30 and 31 days. Only once a year, on March 1st, is it necessary to adjust the date. This differentiates the annual calendar from its big brother, the perpetual calendar, which also takes the short month of February into account, even in leap years. The annual calendar, however, is concerned not so much with eternity as with the present. The mechanism takes up less space in the movement and is distinguished by its resilience, which makes it an ideal companion for everyday use.

An original new development

A team of watchmakers, designers, engineers and technicians at Glashütte Original has now focused considerable creativity and watchmaking savoir-faire on this mechanical challenge. The new Calibre 92 was designed to meet the needs of modern life, to make complex mechanisms easy to operate and wear. As a result, the new automatic movement – only 7.65 mm in height – impresses with its exceptional user friendliness and refined details. Along with the off-centre hour, minute and small seconds displays characteristic of the Pano family, the Calibre 92 features a moon phase display, a Panorama Date and a retrograde month display driven by a cleverly designed mechanism.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

Under the loupe: the wheel of time

With the annual calendar the date advances automatically at the end of the month from the 30th or 31st to the 1st. What seems like magic is in fact a precisely calculated and meticulous mechanical operation. The month wheel at the heart of the movement serves as this function’s “memory”. Glashütte Original’s watchmakers have equipped it with a ball bearing. A total of 38 tiny balls made of hardened steel with a diameter of 0.5 mm ensure that friction is reduced to a minimum and the efficiency of mechanical processes improved. The cam disc at the top of the wheel completes one revolution per year, and its irregular rim triggers the switching process at the end of the month; its indentations mark the months with 31 days. A small tooth on the underside of the wheel advances the month ring via a gear chain, bringing the retrograde display on the dial side to life.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

Under the loupe: the retrograde month display

The retrograde display highlights the current month in a stylish fashion. A curved sapphire crystal window between 3 and 6 o’clock uses numerals to indicate the 12 months. The crystal is tinted grey, with the sole exception of the month numerals. The indicators on the month ring beneath it, which completes one revolution every four years, ensure in this manner that only one digit at a time is highlighted in colour. This type of display is a genuine novelty at Glashütte Original and represents a stylish and innovative interpretation of the classic month display.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

Under the loupe: Panorama Date and moon phase

The characteristic Panorama Date, which completes the annual calendar information at 4 o’clock, is one of Glashütte Original’s trademark features. Thanks to the concentric mounting of two display discs on the same plane, the date can be read at a glance, with no need for a bar separating the digits. The date is adjusted, just like the month, hour, minutes and small seconds, with the help of the crown. The moon phase at 2 o’clock shows the celestial profile of the earth’s satellite against a sparkling starry sky. In theory, the moon phase will be displayed correctly for 122 years; only after this period has elapsed would it need to be manually adjusted by one day. It is set using a discreet corrector on the edge of the case.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

A modern mechanism with traditional finishing

Evidence of the new calibre’s contemporary ambitions is provided by the silicon balance spring in the heart of the watch, increased protection against the magnetic fields of everyday life, and a 100-hour power reserve for maximum autonomy. The movement is secured in the case with a bayonet mounting, which ensures effective shock and impact resistance. Each watch is assembled, finished and regulated with great manual skill in the manufactory workshops. The sapphire crystal case back permits discovery of the many indications of its origins in Glashütte, including the elegant Glashütte stripes finish, bevelled edges, blued screws, the hand-engraved balance cock, the renowned three-quarter plate and the carefully decorated rotor with an oscillating mass in 21-carat gold.

The PanoMaticCalendar in red gold

The new movement premieres in two versions at once. It presents its rhodium-plated face as Calibre 92-09 in the version with a red gold case. The 42 mm diameter satin-polished case is lightly domed and sits comfortably on the wrist. The dial on this model is in silver opaline, a soft, warm silver tone. The refined rehaut ring, which frames and highlights the dial, is particularly elegant. The hour, minute and small seconds dials appear with a finely fluted vinyl-type decorative pattern. Golden appliques and hands coated with Super- LumiNova®, along with a classic blued steel seconds hand, set brilliant accents; these are taken up by a golden frame around the Panorama Date – this too a first for Glashütte Original. The month is highlighted by a black indicator on a white ground, while the colour of the moon is attuned to the red gold case. This unlimited edition is worn with a brown Louisiana Alligator nubuck leather strap with foldover clasp or pin buckle in red gold.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The limited edition PanoMaticCalendar in platinum

The new movement, appearing as Calibre 92-10 in its skeletonized and black rhodium plated version in a 42mm platinum case, represents a completely different approach. Limited to 150 pieces, this model offers views of – among other things – the month wheel positioned below the small seconds, the moon phase switch and the date discs. The generously cut out galvanic black dial with fine vinyl-type decorative pattern is set with applied indexes in white gold. The minute and hour hands are blued and coated with Super-LumiNova®, the seconds hand is rhodium plated and skeletonized. In keeping with the watch’s dark look, the month display appears in white against a black background, and here the moon has a silver shimmer. The strap is in black Louisiana Alligator nubuck leather with a foldover clasp in platinum.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

The new PanoMaticCalendar, which presents the Calibre 92 to the public for the first time, is dedicated to the great and small highlights of life – those emotional moments and encounters that remain impressed in our memory. For many collectors and fans of Glashütte Original, this premiere will surely be one of those days.

The new PanoMaticCalendar is available from June 2022 in all Glashütte Original Boutiques and from selected dealers worldwide.

Glashütte Original PanoMaticCalendar

Proud to be the Original #PTBTO

Further reading

Angus Davies

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