The third iteration of HYT's eye-catching hydro-mechanical watch marks a significant development of the hybrid movement, switching from a circular to a linear portrayal of time. We got a chance to see the unusual new timepiece at Baselworld 2015.
HYT watches tell time through a combination of traditional watch movements and two bellows pushing colored liquid through a capillary. It's an imaginative and challenging approach that requires careful manipulation of traditional mechanics to produce the visually stunning and accurate timepieces.
The H1 movement made use of two vertically-placed bellows to push the colored liquid around a circular capillary surrounding the dial, while the second generation H2 setup switched to a V-shaped bellow configuration. The third version of the movement is notably different, pushing liquid along in a straight line while bringing in a rotating, four hour dial alongside an articulated arm for telling minutes.
Positioned in the top section of the case, the left bellow pushes the water-based, colored liquid along the straight capillary, while the bellow to the right compensates as the second, viscous-based translucent fluid retreats along the tube. Once six hours pass, the mechanism goes into retrograde, with the resulting energy being harvested to turn the four-faced dial below.
Minutes are handled in a similarly linear fashion, with the traditional watch movement driving an articulated hand along a straight 60 minute readout. The case, which is constructed from PVD-coated titanium and micro-blasted, satin-finished platinum, measures 62 mm by 41 mm and is 16 mm thick (2.4 x 1.6 x 0.63 in). It's water resistant to 30 m (98 ft) and, like the H1 and H2, features a power reserve indicator, this time located on the rear of the watch. The manual winding caliber has a 170 hour power reserve.
Not only does the new watch represent a significant evolution of HYT's standout mechanism, but it's also one of the most eye-catching timepieces at Baselworld 2015.
The H3 will be limited to 25 pieces when it launches in September 2015. You'll need deep pockets if you're interested in owning one, with the timepieces priced at US$290,000 each.