HANDS-ON: The Hublot Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase Titanium, same style, smaller size

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For Hublot, 2015 was very much the year of the Big Bang, with the release of some pretty radical variations and the use of several avant-garde materials. Now, though, as we approach the middle of 2016, we’ve seen a shift in the brand’s focus to the Spirit of Big Bang the softer, more elegant younger brother of the Big Bang.

First released in 2014, it’s had a few years to develop and mature in its own right. One such evolution is the newest family member – the Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase.

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The first thing you notice about the Spirit is its distinctive tonneau – one of the more uncommon shapes in watchmaking, perhaps because it’s hard to get right. (If you like the shape, other good examples are the IWC Da Vinci line and the majority of Richard Mille’s work.) Until now, it came in at 45mm, which wore very large indeed given the shape, but for this Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase, Hublot has reduced the case to a far more approachable 42mm. It still has plenty of presence, but the new size opens it up to a broader audience – not least including women.

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Now, a skeletonised dial is par for the course when it comes to Hublot, but the Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase offers a fresh take on the style. The industrial design and matte grey (titanium) colour scheme tones down the typically distinctive look, while the red minute markers are a nice contrast, adding just enough detail to keep things interesting.

Functionally, the watch ticks all the right boxes. Fifty hours of power reserve and 100m of water resistance leave you well equipped for whatever gets thrown your way, and the execution of the big date and moonphase complications is well done. Currently the watch is offered on a rubber strap, which fits nicely in their philosophy of fusion, though it would also look great on alligator, as it has serious potential to be dressed up.

Overall, Hublot is striking the right balance with the Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase. It’s a more subtle watch, that nevertheless stays true to the brand’s disruptive, sporty core values.

Hublot Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase Titanium Australian pricing

Hublot Spirit of Big Bang Moonphase, in titanium, reference 647.NX.1137.RX, $24300

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