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Independent watchmaker Franck Muller is known as 'The Master of Complications' for his ingenious creations. His eponymous watches are also immediately recognisable thanks to their curved lines and distinctive designs. Discover Franck Muller at Time+Tide.

ADVENT CALENDAR 2016: December 24 – Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon

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Silent night, holy night, all is calm, apart from the reassuring tick of your Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon. And let’s not for a minute – or five seconds to be more accurate – mistake the forest for the Christmas trees here, the real star inside this gold curvex case is the tourbillon. When you’re playing at this level, tourbillons are par for the course, but Franck Muller’s master watchmaker Pierre-Michel Golay has taken the Thunderbolt Tourbillon to the next level. Most tourbillons make a full revolution every 60 seconds – this one does it in five, not only making it the fastest tourbillon in the world, but also one of the most mesmerising. If Santa had a stretch target, this would be it. Good luck mate! Who should you buy this for:Someone who has been very, very, very good. What’s the damage: If you have to ask…. Under $400k   Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon Australian pricing Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon, $357,600

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HANDS-ON: Franck Muller gets disruptive with the Vanguard Chronograph Camouflage

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If you want to get technical (and at T+T we always do), camouflage is a combination of patterns, colours and materials that serves to conceal an object and help it blend in with its surroundings. In nature, think leopards and tigers. In more man-made contexts, camouflage is the domain of the military, where it’s often given the boring-yet-descriptive name of ‘disruptive pattern material’ – the amorphous blobs and swirling shapes of modern camo serving to obscure the shape of the soldier or vehicle against its environment. If we only used this set of criteria, the Franck Muller Vanguard Chronograph Camouflage would not pass MOD muster. Even though the dial does a good job imitating forest, desert and urban camouflage patterns, there’s still no mistaking that curvex shape of the watch. Luckily then, this Vanguard isn’t military issue – rather it uses camouflage in its far more fun and fashionable context – that of style. And of course, on high streets and catwalks across the world, fashion’s appropriation of this covert print isn’t intended to make the wearer blend in with the crowd, but to help them stand out. And on this front the Vanguard excels. Even if the watch didn’t sport those not-so-stealthy dials,… Read More

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HANDS-ON: Hello Sailor! Franck Muller takes to the high seas with the Yachting collection

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The last time we had Franck Muller in the office it was a bold Vanguard clad in sinister black and red – a watch that was at once sporty and menacing. Today we’re looking at another take on their trademark curved shape, and while the case and dial layout are the similar to the Vanguard, the overall look and feel couldn’t be more different. The name gives the game away a little, but the Yachting watch offers a fresh nautical feel on the wrist. The marine allusions start with the dial, a shimmering navy blue that pairs well with the bright white Arabic hour markers. On top of that the centre of the dial displays a compass rose, a navigational motif that is picked up in the outer section of the dial (complete with lines of latitude and longitude), with bearings on the outermost section. If you were still on the fence about the world this watch lived in, the ‘yachting’ text at the bottom of the dial will seal the deal one way or another. There’s no denying that there’s quite a lot going on with this dial, and it won’t be for everyone. But it’s colourful and fun,… Read More

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ADVENT CALENDAR 2016: December 24 – Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon

Franck-Muller-Thunderbolt

Silent night, holy night, all is calm, apart from the reassuring tick of your Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon. And let’s not for a minute – or five seconds to be more accurate – mistake the forest for the Christmas trees here, the real star inside this gold curvex case is the tourbillon. When you’re playing at this level, tourbillons are par for the course, but Franck Muller’s master watchmaker Pierre-Michel Golay has taken the Thunderbolt Tourbillon to the next level. Most tourbillons make a full revolution every 60 seconds – this one does it in five, not only making it the fastest tourbillon in the world, but also one of the most mesmerising. If Santa had a stretch target, this would be it. Good luck mate! Who should you buy this for:Someone who has been very, very, very good. What’s the damage: If you have to ask…. Under $400k   Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon Australian pricing Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon, $357,600

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GONE IN 60 SECONDS: The most complicated wristwatch ever made – the Franck Muller Aeternitas Mega video review

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Franck Muller has the rather grandiloquent sobriquet of ‘The Master of Complications’ – and this watch is the reason why. Superseding Patek Philippe’s Calibre 89 for the most complicated title when it was released in 2010, the Aeternitas Mega features a staggering 36 complications, 21 hands and a movement with no fewer than 1483 parts. More impressive still, it held on to that title even after Patek unveiled its showstopping Grandmaster Chime in 2014. (For some reason, this is occasionally referred to as the most complicated watch ever made, though the Aeternitas Mega tops it by an impressive margin of 16 complications, which places it as the clear winner, even allowing for the inevitable ambiguity as to what constitutes a ‘complication’.) Reading the watch takes more than a little getting used to and adjusting it requires a PhD in advanced horology. But whatever you do, don’t let it run out of power – resetting it must be a nightmare. Franck Muller Aeternitas Mega Australian pricing Franck Muller Aeternitas Mega, $4,231,300 (Note, RRP has been updated since this video was filmed).

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GONE IN 60 SECONDS: Lightning fast – the Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon

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Franck Muller makes statement watches par excellence, as exemplified by the Thunderbolt Tourbillon. The first thing you notice is, of course, the case. The big gold curvex shape certainly makes an impression on the wrist, and shows the hand-finished, skeletonised movement in the best possible light. The manually wound movement has a mighty four barrels, allowing for eight days of power reserve. That said, the real star of the show is the tourbillon. When you’re playing at this level of horology, tourbillons are par for the course, but Franck Muller’s master watchmaker Pierre-Michel Golay has taken the Thunderbolt’s to the next level. Most tourbillons make a full revolution every 60 seconds – this one does it in five, not only making it the fastest tourbillon in the world, but also one of the most mesmerising. Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon pricing The Franck Muller Thunderbolt Tourbillon, 238,000 CHF, is a limited production piece.

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HANDS-ON: Batman (Rolex’s BLNR) v Superman (Franck Muller’s Vanguard Carbon Krypton), in ‘The Lume Wars’ (way better than ‘Dawn of Justice’, we PROMISE)

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Earlier this year we were witness to a chance encounter between two giants of both the superhuman and horological pantheons. The showdown took place at dusk, on the shores of Lake Geneva, at Franck Muller’s Watchland. The combatants? None other than the Batman, in the form of Rolex’s GMT-Master II BLNR, versus Superman, in the shape of the Franck Muller Vanguard Carbon Krypton. The Rolex will be a known quantity to most, but just in case, here’s an excellent review by Bruce (Duguay, not Wayne). Its opponent, however, is probably new to you, a variant of Franck Muller’s sporty Vanguard, the Carbon Krypton. This eye-catching creation features a highly unusual case and dial combination of carbon fibre flecked with Super-Luminova. By day, the watch is Clark Kent, with a good-looking face and a broad-shouldered 44mm body. By night, the watch transforms into Superman, suffused with the glow of deadly Kryptonite, making it look meaner than ever. In this battle, the winner won’t be determined by case shape or mechanical prowess, but rather by lume, which is shorthand for luminescence. Batman has Rolex’s proprietary Chromalight in his arsenal. The icy blue glow overpowers the Franck Muller’s Super-Luminova in brightness alone. But in terms… Read More

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