Roger Dubuis brings its contemporary watchmaking chops to the minute repeater complication to create a unique new chiming watch, the Excalibur Diabolus in Machina which is the brand’s irreverent take on the traditional minute repeating complication. If you are wondering about the name, it’s got association with a belief that the devil existed in a particular musical tone. Intrigued? Read on.
The case is reminiscent of the Excalibur family with its characteristic ridged bezel. The case is made from Micro-Melt BioDur CCM, an material that is made from a cobalt-chromium-molybdenum wrought. Its properties include high strength, corrosion resistance, and wear resistance. The 45 mm case is 16 mm thick and is fitted with a sapphire crystal and anti-reflective treatment.
The Excalibur range is known for its open-worked dials with the prominent star-shaped bridge. On this particular watch, the skeletonized NAC coated bridges are arranged to look as if the star is imploding and uprooted some of the Roman numerals in its wake. A flying tourbillon is displayed prominently at the bottom of the dial. It takes a while before your eyes get adjusted to this dial.
To activate the minute repeater button at the 10 o’ clock position on the case. The ring tone is distinguished by a low pitch for the hours, a high pitch for the minutes, and two tones for the quarter hours. A disc placed at 11 o’ clock that has been blended in with the Roman numeral is used to display whether the hours, quarters or minutes is being chimed.
A lever placed between 3 o’clock and 4 indicates whether the watch is in “manual winding” or “time setting” position. This is done as a safety feature as adjusting the watch while the minute repeater is playing can damage the movement. The pushpiece that activates the chiming function has a mechanism called “all or nothing”. Another safety feature, it ensures that that the minute repeater is activated only if the pusher has been fully and completely pressed. This prevents the mechanism from being triggered accidentally.
The watch gets its name from the Diabolus in Musica, a reference to “tritone” in music theory. In Medieval times, it was believed that the devil was said to exist in a particular musical tone. For centuries, it was called the devil's interval — or, in Latin, diabolus in musica. The use of Tritone was banned during the Renaissance period. Roger Dubuis has chosen to tune its minute repeater to the sound of the tritone, it is specifically tuned to C and G flat.
The minute repeater movement Caliber RD0107 is made up of 588 components.
The new RD0107 Caliber is a self-winding movement built specifically for this watch. It has an escapement that beats at 3 Hz (21,600 vph) and a power reserve of 60 hours. It is made up of 588 components and features decorations like circular-graining, Cotes de Genève and NAC coated bridges and plate.
This is a one-off piece and is part of Roger Dubuis’ Unique series that allows buyers to customize each watch to ensure that each timepiece in unique. It is priced at AED2,101,000.