A quarter of a century ! Albeit modest on the scale of watchmaking history, this longevity nonetheless conveys authentic recognition among devotees of Fine Watchmaking, while representing an important proven guarantee of continuity for a collection that has shown itself capable of keeping step with the times – and particular with its enthusiasts.
Introduced at the SIHH 2017, this year’s Master Control vintage comes in three models : Date, Geographic (picture above), as well as the Chronograph starring on the cover of this GMT winter edition. Last year at the same time, we had headlined our magazine with the Master Memovox Boutique Edition, whose blue color had gained a broad following well beyond our circle of readers. While still omnipresent on the alligator strap, blue no longer dominates the dial, instead appearing as distinctive accents that make this new version immediately identifiable, notably on its cut-out baton-type hands evoking the skyline of Manhattan. It adopts a softer shade on the tachymeter scale and the two 30-minute and 12-hour counters, playfully and subtly embedded in the central railtrack circle displaying the hourmarkers. A discreet vintage spirit pervades this elegant timepiece.
Master Control Chronograph © Jaeger-LeCoultre
I can not think of a way to have a world map on the dial up and still maintain a minimalist appearance. But, there are small elements that can make or break a world timer dial. Many have dials with maps printed on these which are inclined to appear flat and a bit dead but not in the case of their Geophysic Universal Time. Here, the map seems to be etched onto the dial just like a bas-relief and supplies the dial some feel. The employed markers are also a nice touch.Another common complaint with world timers that plenty of collectors have are the palms, which are inclined to be small. This is again a consequence of design because the authentic time-telling dial is quite small and the hands have to be limited to the radius. If you’ve discovered the hand span to be a problem in other world timers, then the Geophysic Universal Time might not be the ideal watch for you. The sword shaped palms are brilliantly polished and filled with Super-LumiNova. In practice, legibility should not be a problem in most situations.The Geophysic Universal Time is placed in a 41.6mm steel case. The new update, while seemingly small on paper, makes a substantial visual difference. The Geophysic Universal Time is currently offered on a fine-link metal bracelet.
Each watch has a face, and that of the Master Control Chronograph wears a sincere smile – while remaining paradoxically sure of its serious reliability. Like all the models in what became a cult collection right from the start, it proudly bears the “1000 hours Control” seal, signifying that it has successfully undergone six weeks of testing in six positions aimed at challenging its resistance and its performance.
The Calibre 939 /1 of the Master Control Geographic © Jaeger-LeCoultre
The two convenient and user-friendly pushpieces framing the screw-lock crown leave no doubt as to their role, which is to trigger the chronograph functions of the automatic caliber developed in the firm’s Le Sentierbased Manufacture. It is fortunately not engaged in a race against time. A last useful note for couples who like to share everything : they can express this penchant through a case designed to suit both men’s and women’s wrists. Happy anniversary !
Master Control Chronograph
CASE : satin-brushed stainless steel, solid back, water-resistant to 50m
DIAMETER : 40mm
MOVEMENT : mechanical automatic (JLC Caliber 751G, 65h power reserve), 235 components, 5.72mm thick
FUNCTIONS : hours, minutes, seconds, chronograph
DIAL : opaline-finished center, circular satin-brushed exterior, circular guilloché-worked counters, cut-out hands
STRAP : blue alligator leather, steel pin buckle