Even though the attention of watchmaking industry was concentrated on the SIHH 2014 event in recent days, this show was not the only significant thing that occurred in Geneva. The Swiss city was also the location for the unveiling of De Bethune’s new model. New DB Digitale timepiece is a peculiar and innovative piece which combines three types of displays enabled with new hand-wound DB2144 mechanical caliber. Its jumping hours display is digital, whilst its minute display is analog. In the center of the dial there is the third type of display, the recognizable spherical moon phase of supreme accuracy that requires a single correction every millennium. DB28 Digitale is presented in a highly polished ergonomic platinum case and will have the least price of around $106,150.
A Lovely Dial with Three Types of Display
De Bethune likes to present different and original designs of its high-end timekeepers, which is clearly visible in their newcomer from the DB28 series. The extremely beautiful watch features a silver-colored dial with a barleycorn guilloche motif which was made manually. The center of the dial is reserved for the magnificent spherical representation of moon phases which is made from platinum and palladium. The moon sphere is surrounded with a ring made of blued titanium which represents the night sky and features stars made of white gold. Over than this lays an aperture for its jumping hours display. Further up lays an unconventional retrograde display for minutes, with the rotatable minute disc which is visible solely on the upper half of the watch’s face. The current minutes are visible on the very top, as signified with an arrow pointer that lays at the 12 o’clock position. This unconventional display is surrounded with another arching representation of the night sky, the same as the one that encircles the moon sphere. The only other visible detail on the dial is a plate with the company’s name which is positioned at the bottom.
Caliber DB2144 with Five Patents
All the various types of displays of De Bethune DB28 Digitale timekeeper are based on its in-house DB2144 mechanical manually-wound movement with several innovations. The caliber consists of 329 components and has the diameter of 40 mm. Its regulating organ is made with a balance wheel crafted of silicon and white gold, as well as with a balance spring with flat end curve. Both of these traits constitute as the first of five De Bethune patents used in the construction of the caliber. It should also be said that the frequency of the 32-jeweled movement is 28,800 vph. The second on the list of innovations is an escape wheel made of silicon. Moreover, we have a triple para-chute shock absorbing system that secures better resilience, as well as a self-regulating twin barrel which provides a power reserve of 55 hours. The final patent used in the construction of caliber DB2144 is the integration of the spherical moon indication which features an astonishing accuracy. It requires a single correction every 1,112 years!
As for the decorations, the intricate caliber of DB28 Digitale features hand-performed De Bethune stripes motif visible on its characteristic delta-shaped main-plate. There are also mirror polished blued steel components, as is the caliber’s balance bridge. By the way, caliber DB2144 is also used in another extremely interesting new watch by De Bethune: Dream Watch 5 piece which is distinguished by its strikingly futuristic design.
Comfortable and Light
As for the case of the watch, it is another prime example of the De Bethune’s excellence and level of skill. The lovely round case is actually made of grade 5 titanium which is highly polished. This is another recognizable trait of the brand’s timekeepers. The entire case is 45 mm wide, or with the diameter of 43 mm if we exclude its titanium fixed bezel. Additionally, it includes a crown which is placed at the unconventional 12 o’clock position. On the front of the watch, there is a sapphire crystal with double glare-proof treatment. Fortunately, there is also a transparent section on the case back which allows the wearer to observe the functioning of the timekeeper’s magnificent caliber. The case is attached to floating lugs, another De Bethune’s patented invention. These skeletonized lugs can actually be moved up and down in order to provide a perfectly comfortable grip on the wearer’s wrist, whilst the comfort is additionally secured with the reduced weight of the watch that is caused by the selection of titanium for the case material. The lugs join the housing with an extra supple alligator leather strap in black color. Finally, we should say that the attachment locks with a pin buckle made of titanium.
As for the price of the piece, it certainly matches the high-end traits and the overall quality of the piece. Only selected watch enthusiasts will be able to buy this De Bethune’s novelty since its price is expressed in six figures and goes to $106,150.