A. Lange & Sohne to launch the new Grand Lange 1
August 6, 2012: Prestigious German watchmaking company, A. Lange & Söhne, is soon going to launch the new Grand Lange 1 in the market, which takes inspiration from the Five-Minute Clock above the stage of the Semper Opera House in Dresden.
King Frederick Augustus II of Saxony had ordered to build the Five-Minute Clock for the auditorium of his new court opera house. He wanted a clock which could be seen and read from anywhere in the opera house. The ground-breaking design of the Five-Minute Clock was crafted by clock maker Johann Christian Friedrich Gutkaes, who was also the mentor of Ferdinand A. Lange. Together they created one of the world’s first digital clocks. Born out of necessity, a round dial would not have provided the required legibility in the darkened auditorium. It was therefore decided to create a structure involving two counter-rotating drums. In a magnificently decorated double aperture high above the stage, they show the hours and the minutes. Needless to say, the clock was a huge success.
A century and a half later, the double aperture with the large numbers was celebrated with a brilliant ‘comeback’. As the first outsize date in a series-production watch, it was positioned at the top on the right in the dial of Lange 1. But now, in Grand Lange 1, the movement has been redeveloped to provide a pleasingly flat design. With a diameter of 40.9 mm, the case (available in rose and yellow gold or platinum) is only 8.8 mm high. It has also been possible to transfer the precisely balanced dial arrangement of Lange 1 to the larger model without any overlapping. The Lange outsize date, the hands and even the solid gold appliques have been increased in the same proportion as the case.
Grand Lange 1 has a power reserve of 72 hours. To save space, the movement has only one barrel. Inside the elaborately hand-decorated and twice-assembled Lange manufacture calibre L095.1, a balance spring made in-house ensures maximum precision.