Bulgari’s Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater Carbon is a new and stunning version of the pretty amazing Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater that was presented two years ago at Baselworld (read more about that, here). A record-breaker, being the thinnest watch of its kind, the original had a case made of satin-finished titanium. The same material was used for the innovative dial, with cut-out indexes to help amplify the sound of the chiming mechanism, for which a number of new patents were filed.
The watch is stunning for a number of reasons. Firstly, the sheer genius of being an ultra-thin movement where every part has been made to its minimum expression and designed to fit with each other component with extreme precision.
And, in an industry that prides itself on precision, that really means something. For 2018, the design team, led by Fabrizio Buonamassa, decided to take a step on from the titanium case of 2016 and came up with a fabulous new casing made entirely from an epoxy thermosetting resin called Carbon Thin Ply (CTP), which gains rigidity thanks to the thin carbon fibres that make up the super-resistant construction for both the case and caseback – the perfect material for an extremely slim watch that needs to be both resilient and have acoustic properties close to those of titanium.
Perhaps the best part of the watch is its ultra-cool texture, made even better thanks to a blackened titanium bracelet. Both sides of the watch have a thin anti-glare treated sapphire crystal because, apart from the advantages to sound quality, it would be an unforgivable sin to hide the beautiful BVL 362 calibre behind a closed caseback. A marvel comprised of 362 individual components – the same used in the previous titanium version – it is hand wound and offers up to 42 hours of power reserve.
On the wrist, the Finissimo Minute Repeater Carbon weighs next to nothing (47g, in total), with a 40mm-diameter case measuring just 6.85mm thick. And the sound is as amazing as it was when the original Octo Finissimo Minute Repeater was revealed in 2016. The dial is made from the same carbon composite and features the now familiar cut-out indexes to give the chimes as much room as possible to expand and reach our eardrums with the melody of time. Limited to just 50 examples, this amazing piece of engineering and design is a true example of 21st-century high-end watchmaking.
Hand-wound BVL 362 minute-repeating calibre, 42-hour power reserve
40mm Carbon Thin Ply, water-resistant to 10m
Black titanium bracelet