During the SIHH 2009 international exhibition, JLC, one of the few Real Swiss Manufactures still producing their own tiny ticking masterpieces, has revealed its new highly sophisticated Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Pro Geographic Navy SEALs (ref. Q1852670).
Presented in a large 18-karat pink gold case whole 46 millimeters in diameter, the Master Compressor Diving Pro Geographic Navy SEALs features a mechanical depth gauge hidden inside an ominous-looking compression chamber on the left side of the timekeeper’s body.
The depth gauge is basically a blackened steel membrane that contracts or expands as the water pressure rises and falls and transmits its movement to a centrally located hand that indicates the current depth at a special scale that replaces the usual minute track. The scale is graduated only from zero to 80 meters, although the watch is officially rated at more impressive 300 meters (30 ATM.)
The timekeeper sports the in-house 975C-based Calibre 979 automatic movement. It is the same cal. 975 “Autotractor” mechanism from 2004 with an extra depth gauge module.
Beating at 28,800 vibrations per hour (that’s exactly 4Hz, half of the frequency that your brain likes to work at, and that’s exactly why watching a moving seconds hand puts into a semi-hypnotic state) this gorgeous movement has a power reserve of 48 hours and features a 24-hour dual time-zone complication.
The GMT complication consists of two displays.
There is a time zones indicator at 6 o’clock, which is operated with a secondary setting crown and displays 24 cities of the world.
Choosing the city that you want, you automatically set the reading of the second indicator at 9 o’clock that tells you the current time in that city in a 24-hour format so there is no need for a stand-alone day/night indicator.
Although the dial seems to be overloaded with information, the data is well organized and doesn’t overwhelm you, even at first glance.
At this time, Jaeger-LeCoultre has released just one hi-res photo, but it’s clear that the Navy SEALs edition differs from the original Master Compressor Diving Pro Geographic only with its case material, the color of the depth gauge meter and a scratch-resistant ceramic bezel.
Even the rubber strap looks the same, but that’s basically an idea behind most modern “limited editions”: personalizing an existing best-selling collection to get an even higher profit on a well-advertised model, what else did you expect? A one-off?
Anyway, it is nice to have a real diving tool on your wrist. If you can afford one, that is.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Pro Geographic Navy SEALs (Q1852670) specification
Price range: $44,000 (MSRP)
Winding: Automatic (self-winding)
Movement: Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 979, 7.45 mm thick, 268 components, in-house, Swiss Made
Frequency: 28,800 vph
Complications: Power reserve indicator, depth meter, date, second time-zone (GMT) with a city selector at 6 o’clock
Power reserve: 48 hours
Case: Rose gold, 18K
Diameter: 46.30 mm
Water resistance: 300 meters
Strap: Black rubber strap with rose gold tang buckle
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective