Is there any complication more esteemed than the pinnacle of chimes, the Grand Sonnerie? The complication, which strikes automatically on the hour and quarter hour, makes a tourbillon look as common place as a small seconds counter. So what about if, say, a watchmaker as prestigious as Patek Philippe takes it on? Well, then you get the new Ref. 6301P. Collectors, get ready to swoon.
On paper, the 6301P has a lot in common with Patek Philippe’s most complicated timepiece, the Grandmaster Chime. It houses the full suite of striking functions: the aforementioned grand Sonnerie, a petit Sonnerie (which chimes on the hour) and a minute repeater (which chimes the time on command).
That’s about where the similarities stop though. Rather than load the newest grand Sonnerie with the host of other functions in the Grandmaster Chime, the 6301P is about as stripped back as a complication with this many moving parts can be, despite sharing the same calibre 300 base movement of its more complicated older sibling.
The Calibre 300 though shows some serious differences here. For one, Patek has upped the power reserve by creating a set of two tandem-linked twin mainsprings (a total of four), two of which keep the watch ticking, and two of which keep it chiming. Separated as they are, this means the movement proper (the going train) has a power reserve of 72-hours, while the chiming mechanism has a separate power reserve of 24-hours, keeping itself to itself for practicality’s sake.
One other addition is the inclusion of a small seconds at 6 o’clock, something the Grandmaster Chime simply had too much going on to consider. It’s more than a nice little addition; it’s a patented jumping seconds mechanism inspired by the previous Ref. 5275 Jumping Hour, another Patek classic.
All of that haute horology magic though is hidden underneath one of the most pared-back aesthetics of any serious high complication. The large, 44.8mm platinum case is taken from the 2015’s Ref. 5370 split-seconds chronograph, while the black grand feu enamel dial and glacé finish are about as classic as these things come – although the slight slant to the Breguet numerals adds a bit of a modern flourish.
Overall, the 6301P illustrates Patek’s acoustic expertise in its purest form, taking inspiration from a veritable rogue’s gallery of previous collectors’ references. We don’t have a price quite yet, though it is now part of Patek’s regular collection. But let’s be honest, if you need to ask you’re not getting one any time soon.
Price & Specs:
Model: Patek Philippe Grand Sonnerie
Case/Dial: 44.8mm diameter x 12mm height, platinum 950 with sapphire front and back and optional solid platinum caseback, black grand feu enamel dial with 18k gold Breguet numerals
Water resistance: N/A (protected against moisture and dust)
Movement: Calibre GS 36-750 PS IRM, 37mm x 7.5mm, manual winding, 95 jewels, 703 parts, Patek Philippe seal
Frequency: 25,200 vph (3.5 Hz)
Power reserve: 72h (movement), 24h (strikework)
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, grande and petite sonnerie, minute repeater on 3 gongs, jumping seconds, Strikework mode indicator (petite sonnerie, grande sonnerie, silence), power-reserve indicators for movement and strikework
Strap: Hand-stitched alligator leather with large square scales, shiny black, platinum foldover clasp
Price/availability: £1,055,000 including VAT
More details at Patek Philippe.