Michael Thompson Editor-in-Chief | mike @ isochronmedia . com
D uring an ordinary fall season , collectors are still digesting the spring watch debuts , comparing models , judging value and , in many cases , vowing to save enough for an end-of-the-year horological treat – as a gift or a self-reward .
But as 2020 is anything but ordinary , we are instead eyeing up a host of newly launched watches , many just released at all-new debut venues like Geneva Watch Days and Watches & Wonders Shanghai , and via Zoom .
And thanks to the idiosyncratic nature and delays inherent in publishing anything this year , I ’ ve already seen so many new watches – only virtually of course – in the weeks since we ’ ve put this issue together , far more than we ’ re able to fit onto the pages .
For example , since we ’ ve assembled the bulk of his issue , Rolex has issued updates to its Submariner , Oyster Perpetual , Skydweller and Datejust collections . I ’ m most impressed by the new 41mm size , caliber and color updates within the Oyster Perpetual line than with the Geneva giant ’ s other , mostly cosmetic , debuts . Still , the upgrades , however delayed , show sober evolution .
Bulgari advanced its six-year run of horological record-breaking with the new Octo Finissimo Tourbillon Chronograph Skeleton Automatic , the sixth ultra-thin watch in as many years claiming ultimate horological thinness . From across the Pacific , Grand Seiko showcased its deep technical capabilities by showing its first-ever concept creation , called T0 ( T zero ), a constant-force tourbillon that incorporates a constant force mechanism and a tourbillon on the same axis and , for the first time in watchmaking , within a single unit . The demonstration caliber is currently on display at the Grand Seiko Studio in Shizukuishi .
Frederique Constant brought new life to its Highlife collection , one of the Geneva watchmaker ’ s earliest lines , which is now updated with an integrated steel bracelet and a surprisingly pleasing globe dial pattern . The brand ’ s new Highlife Perpetual Calendar Manufacture and the Highlife Automatic COSC , which we ’ ll show you within our next issue , are especially eye-catching and both offer terrific value .
And within the same Citizen umbrella ( which also includes Frederique Constant , Alpina and Arnold & Son , among others ) I ’ ve just seen – again , virtually – the results of Bulova ’ s most recent visit to its deep design well . Bulova ’ s new Legacy collection , focusing on reviving 1960s and 1970s designs , succeeded wildly with a range of vintage Accutron remakes , all with incredibly detailed cases and dials , and all affordably priced .
We ’ ll have full reports on these and many more fall 2020 debuts online and in the next digital / print issue of International Watch . Until then , check our website and social media for the very latest . Also , enjoy the 2020 debuts we ’ ve detailed inside this issue . It ’ s the last issue we ’ ll label with the current year because we ’ re so looking forward to the end of 2020