Audible timepieces have been a Patek Philippe specialty, ever since the company’s first pocket watch with a minute repeater was produced in 1845.
Lauded for the ability to create beautiful acoustics and aesthetics — without the need for oversized watch cases — Patek Philippe is the foremost leader in the field of minute repeaters timepieces. Further, the sound quality of every minute repeater that leaves the Patek Philippe manufacture is individually tested by the trained ear of company president, Thierry Stern.
In 2019, Patek Philippe introduced the Ref. 5303R, in a limited edition of 12 watches for the “Watch Art Grand Exhibition Singapore 2019.” This was the first time that Patek created a minute repeater with the striking mechanism visible on the dial side, which is both technically and visually intriguing, to collectors and enthusiasts alike.
For 2020, the company unveiled a regular production model of that watch — the Ref. 5303R-001 Minute Repeater Tourbillon — with only slight variations from the limited edition model. The 5303R is now part of the Patek Philippe catalog. And while it’s not a limited edition, per se, as with any minute repeater, the production time, cost, and retail price are all very high, and accordingly, the quantities produced will be very low.
Like the limited edition 5303R from 2019, the 2020 version of Ref. 5303R also comes in an 18K rose gold case with 18K white gold inlays, which measures 42 mm x 12.13 mm, with an interlug width of 20 mm. All the same metals are used, the same manually wound caliber R TO 27 PS movement, the same incredible finishing on the case and movement, and so forth.
The differences are minimal. The chapter ring is black with circles marking the hours now, as opposed to red with stars marking the hours. The 60-seconds tourbillon hand is located in the subdial at 6 o’clock on the dial side, mounted on the backside of the tourbillon cage (tourbillon is visible on the caseback), is gold now instead of red. On the back, the sapphire crystal caseback no longer bears “PATEK PHILIPPE SINGAPORE 2019” as that was for the 12 limited edition timepieces only. And finally, the black alligator leather strap has black threading versus red contrast stitching on the LE model.
Learn more at Patek Philippe.