The Breguet “La Musicale” ref. 7800BB/11/9YV is one of the most fascinating and mesmerizing complications we have reviewed recently. This amazing timepiece turns into a musical box that plays a crystal-toned version of "The Thieving Magpie” overture by Rossini. The music can be played on demand or as an alarm —a melodic reminder at a desired time.
This watch features a robust white gold case measuring 48mm in diameter and 16.3mm in thickness that is fitted with two off-centered push buttons on the left side of the case and two off-centered crowns on the right side. The top push button is used to activate the musical box on demand and the bottom one is used to turn the alarm/musical reminder between the on and off positions. The bottom crown is used to wind and power up the alarm module and also to set the desired alarm time. The top crown is used to wind the movement and set the hours and minutes. This watch is not fitted with a seconds hand or a seconds register in order to keep its design nice and clean.
This masterpiece of horology houses a patented musical mechanism where a disc underneath the dial carries the pins replacing the traditional music-box cylinder and as the dial spins it combs 15 metal teeth to create a fascinating melody. A Liquidmetal membrane placed beneath the movement —automatic calibre Breguet 0900 with 55 jewels and a power reserve of 55 hours— amplifies the frequencies required to emit the tune.
To enhance the listening pleasure, the model is equipped with the first magnetic strike governor in watchmaking history. This patented system —equipped with magnets isolated within the cage— manages to eliminate background noise as well as the characteristic wear typical of classic strike-governors. This beautiful watch features a caseband that is finely engraved with a musical stave instead of the traditional Breguet fluting. The caseband alone is a work of art like on no other Breguet watch we have seen.
The rotating dial on this watch is made of platinum coated with a very fine and intricate rose engine engraving and a chapter ring with Roman numerals. The dial features a small alarm module power reserve indicator at 3 and an on/off alarm indicator between 9 and 10 o'clock that displays a musical note when the alarm is set to the on position. To complete the elegant look of this dial, the watch is fitted with the traditional blue anodized Breguet hands for the hours and minutes and a straight hand with a clef at the bottom for the alarm. Just as with any other Breguet, the dial includes the single case number at 6 and the secret signatures between 11 and 1 o'clock.
This fascinating timepiece is fitted with a black alligator strap with folding clasp featuring the Breguet 'B' on it. A very nice finishing touch to the gorgeous strap that is fitted on this watch.
The case back on this watch is solid and delicately engraved with Rossini's name and "The Thieving Magpie" in Italian. The engraving under Breguet reads: 'La Gazza Ladra' and underneath 'Gioacchino Rossini'.
This Breguet wears considerably bigger than its actual size —more like a 50mm watch— and sits high on the wrist as expected from a watch with this thickness and massive case construction. Even though this piece is a true delicate work of art, you won't feel you are wearing a delicate watch but a very solid and robust timepiece.
This timepiece will not only be a treat to the eyes but also a treat to the ears with its musical box capabilities. A perfect encounter between music and the art of watchmaking. Below we have included a video produced by Breguet that clearly shows this fascinating timepiece in operation.
Sticker Price $90,100 USD. For more info click here.