Image: A. Lange & Söhne
When A. Lange & Söhne delivers a new watch, there is an expectation that it will be special, and the A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk Honeygold Lumen is precisely that. When the watch was announced, the Zeitwerk Luminous already existed so it seemed that this new Honeygold variant was a mere novelty.
There is nothing wrong with that, of course, but the first clue that something is amiss here is that the last time there was a Lumen Zeitwerk — called Luminous then — was 2010. And then there is Honeygold, A. Lange & Söhne’s proprietary precious metal alloy, which the brand does not use for just any old watch. Peeking out from beneath the tinted sapphire crystal dial is part of what makes the Zeitwerk Honeygold Lumen truly special — the all-new manual-winding calibre L043.9.
It is just like A. Lange & Söhne to introduce a new movement in a watch that looks for all the world just like the 2010 Zeitwerk Luminous. Of course, A. Lange & Söhne did not introduce calibre L043.9 on a whim, and it is indeed much improved over that 2010 version. Fittingly, the entire watch has received substantial if subtle updates.
Image: A. Lange & SöhneImage: A. Lange & Söhne
The power reserve has doubled to 72 hours; there is a constant force mechanism in the picture; there is a push piece at 4 o’clock to set the hours independently; the time bridge has been tweaked; and even the fonts for the numerals are a little different. That last bit is not something we noticed ourselves, but is in fact an assumption carried over from the most recent update to the Zeitwerk collection in the form of the Zeitwerk Date in 2019.
Image: A. Lange & Söhne
To backtrack a little, the Lumen part of the Zeitwerk Lumen’s name tells you that the instantaneously jumping hours and minutes are all treated to generous amounts of luminous material. The tinted sapphire crystal allows UV light to charge up the aforementioned coating, and is functionally important here. This is because the three discs that display the numerals do not spend a lot of time in direct light, and thus there is a risk of the luminosity displaying unevenly or indeed not at all without some way for the discs to be charged up with light.
From what we know of these types of Lumen displays, the effect beneath the sapphire crystal is actually more muted than what you see in the images here. For a better reference, check out the video A. Lange & Söhne did for this timepiece with Product Development Director Anthony de Haas deploying his trademark humour while demonstrating various salient points about the watch.
As far as standard specifications go, the movement has 462 parts, the case is 41.9mm, the watch is limited to 200 pieces, and Honeygold is basically 18-carat gold that is a little harder and warmer (to the eye) than plain vanilla 18-carat gold. We look forward to discovering this watch in person.
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