More than 1.5 billion smartwatches were sold around the world last year. Sleek, beautiful – unknowable. How do they actually work?
Modern technology is so smart that few of us really understand how things work. The rapid shift to AI will only increase the distance between our devices and our appreciation of how they do what they do.
This is one of the many reasons people still love mechancial watches. They’re an antidote to technology’s blinding light. When you see an escapement wheel oscillating or a chronograph’s pushers initiating the steady advance of a central seconds hand, it’s reassuringly knowable. Poetic. Joyful even.
And it’s also what motivates us to continue our policy of only making mechanicals – we’re 100 per cent mechanical at Oris. Not a single quartz. And certainly no smartwatches.
And because we’re still an independent Swiss watch company, we’re free to keep making that choice, and go our own way. We love knowing how things work. It’s only human.
When you love mechanical watches, do you begin your critique of a new piece looking at the case front or back? The new ProPilot X Calibre 400 is designed to inspire joy no matter what angle you come at it from.
The dial-side is defined first by its 39mm titanium case. The taut, angular lines of the aviation-inspired form are satin and sand-blasted, giving the watch its raw, technical look, and complemented by the familiar ProPilot bezel and a muscular, sculpted titanium bracelet. The oversized crown is also titanium, and flanked by protectors.
Beyond, the launch collection offers a choice of three dial colours: grey, blue and salmon. This is a fresh, expressive palette, chosen to augment the case’s dynamic proportions – and to bring life and colour to your wrist.
And then there’s the view from the other side. The watch’s titanium case back and open sapphire crystal frame Oris Calibre 400, our in-house five-day automatic.
As with all Calibre 400 Series movements, it’s accurate to -3 to +5 seconds a day, within chronometer certification standards, even after it’s been exposed to the sort of magnetic fields we’re surrounded by every day. This base calibre version has a sweep central seconds hand and a date at 6 o’clock.
All Calibre 400 Series watches carry 10-year warranties and 10-year recommended service intervals, and that applies to the ProPilot X Calibre 400, too. Calibre 400 Series movements have more than 30 non-ferrous and anti-magnetic parts, and were developed to minimise friction and wear-and-tear – the winding rotor uses a slide bearing system, for example – so that we can confidently give the watches their class-leading warranties.
The ProPilot X Calibre 400 follows in a long line of Oris pilot’s watches going back to the early 1900s, but its power lies beyond its associations: it’s a mechanical joy machine.