HYT, the hydro-horological specialist based in the beautiful Neuchâtel, just launched the new SOONOW Instant Rainbow. Its most artistic instrument, which does more than simply mark the hours of the day.
The term SOONOW — a blend of the words ‘soon’ and ‘now’— is intended to invite us to appreciate a timepiece not as a mere instrument of time measurement, but as a horological work of art that calls on us to have a broader appreciation of time itself.
The Instant Rainbow raises HYT’s artistic concept of SOONOW by means of semiprecious stones of diverse tonalities that emulate the colors of the rainbow, just as a prism does when it breaks up pure light.
The rainbows that we can see — with some luck — on rainy summer afternoons, are the result of the decomposition — reflection, refraction, and dispersion — of sunlight through its natural incidence, in each tiny drop of water, resulting in the polychromatic arc. This natural semicircular explosion of colors has its scientific explanation, but the way in which each of us perceives — and feels — quite often paints greater varieties of the same phenomenon.
The mission of each of the pieces in the HYT SOONOW collections goes beyond just showing the time. SOONOW represents an evolution of the watch from an almost enslaving tool of our days to a sort of figurative muse that is meant to tear us away from the rigors and constraints of minutes and seconds, to inspire and accompany us.
HYT wanted to expand that emotion by means of the eight pieces of the SOONOW Instant Rainbow. The burst of colors of this “invention” represents the flow of time presented as an infinite spectrum of possibilities.
The SOONOW Instant Rainbow anchors its artistic idea in the already familiar skull contour of its delicate ten-bend capillary, shaped by hand by the solitary craftsman who works on these. Yellow and blue, two of the three primary colors, are the essential tones that represent the past and future times, respectively.
Yellow is shown as a SuperLuminova streak under the thin borosilicate glass tube. Blue is the color of the remaining liquid and represents the immediate future. The notch separating the clear liquid from the colored one represents the present. Remember that this arrangement of the liquids in the SOONOW watches is opposite to the one we see in other HYT collections, where the colored fluid shows the elapsed time.
The other colors of the rainbow gradually spread out over the entire composition of the dial. The light makes the 668 sapphires, amethysts and tsavorites shine in 14 color variations. In combination with the purple anodized titanium dial, covered with 313 18-carat yellow gold pins of different sizes, this increases the overall radiance and three-dimensional effect of the design. Remarkably, in the eight pieces of the SOONOW Instant Rainbow, the arrangement of the gold pins is exactly the same.
The disc inside the left eye socket shows the figurative march of the seconds, while the right eye offers the power reserve progressing smoothly through the entire color spectrum. Monochromatic contours of SuperLuminova enhance the eyes, nose, and mouth to give the Instant Rainbow its “expression”. And, almost like a reference to the mythical pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, the smile shows a few solid gold teeth.
The 48.8mm stainless-steel case is finished in black DLC. Inside, the generous sapphire glass box, the logo and the spelt-out hours are printed. This solution accompanies the idea of all SOONOW watches, where there is no dedicated indication of the minutes and where time must be seen as a friendly companion, not as a metronome that forces us to keep a certain pace.
The Instant Rainbow is powered by a unique manual wind caliber that drives its double-bellow fluid module through a mechanical cam and rod interface, regulated by the “trident” of the mechanism.
Liquid flow is controlled via ceramic restrictors, while overall precision is ensured by a thermal compensator. Accompanying the rotation of the “second eye”, the high-frequency beat of the movement (28,800 beats per hour) reassures of the power reserve for the watch. The movement has a power reserve of 65 hours and, through the transparent caseback, shows its Côtes de Genève decoration on the bridges. This variant of the SOONOW is accompanied by a rubber strap with a folding clasp finished in black DLC.
Manual wound “exclusive” caliber; blue fluidic hours (inverted liquids); seconds; power reserve indicator; 65-hour power reserve
48.8mm stainless-steel case; height: 20.08mm; stainless-steel screw-down crown; domed sapphire crystal; intra-material HYT logo and engraved hour indication; screwed caseback, with sapphire crystal, “one of eight” decal; water-resistant to 50 meters
Black rubber, titanium folding buckle, black DLC coating