Since its foundation in 1733, Jaeger-LeCoultre has adeptly crafted fine watch movements and It, therefore, seems fitting that one of its collections uses the ‘Master’ nomen. This historical maison is based in Le Sentier, the watchmaking heartland of the Vallée du Joux, a region synonymous with crafting watch movements par excellence. This area is particularly famous for making complicated movements, including tourbillons and minute repeaters as well as ultra-thin calibres.
A trait all ‘Master’ models share is their round cases and classical lines. However, the collection remains diverse and is subdivided into three further groups, Master Control, Master Ultra Thin and Master Grande Tradition. The Master Control collection includes comparatively simple watches, equipped with an hour and minutes displays, to watches equipped with complications, including dual time displays (GMT), alarm watches (Memovox), chronographs and perpetual calendars.
The Master Ultra Thin collection, as the name implies, plays to one of the maison’s historical areas of expertise. The challenge in creating a timepiece which contains a myriad of parts, all positioned in close proximity to each other, is beyond the capabilities of many brands and reaffirms the technical competence of this historical watch company. The primary benefit of an ultra-thin watch is that it resides neatly beneath the cuff, exhibiting an elegant aesthetic.
Despite the slender profile exhibited with Jaeger-LeCoultre’s ultra-thin models the brand continues to offer highly complicated versions of these svelte watches, in some cases featuring perpetual calendars, tourbillons and minute repeaters.
The Master Grande Tradition models represent the pinnacle of Jaeger-LeCoultre ownership and include dials employing artisanal crafts such as enamelling and Haute joaillerie. Moreover, these ultra high-end timepieces also feature supreme technical virtuosity. For example, the Master Grande Tradition GyroTourbillon 3 features a flying spherical tourbillon, a digital instant chronograph with monopusher, a day/night indication and a 24-hour display. Its movement, the Calibre 176, consists of 592 movement parts and its case is crafted of the noblest of metals, platinum.