HYT introduces the new FLOW – combining their unique blend of traditional watchmaking with a liquid display system and carrying its own light.
Press Release with commentary in italics.
Enlightening. Dynamic. Technical.
It’s good to know where light comes from; it’s better to know where it leads. In the boldly dynamic FLOW timepieces, HYT takes the craftsmanship of mechanical watchmaking into a new age of enlightenment. Mechanics replace electronics as the unexpected catalyst of illumination, with a proprietary new complication generating light on demand. The resultant rays exercise their technically-sourced brilliance to reflect the energized momentum of current times.
Let there be light
HYT’s FLOW watches mirror the brand’s relentless quest to bring innovation that resonates with its contemporary context. Literally speaking, light brightens what already exists; figuratively it brings deeper understanding. The latter describes these timepieces’ purpose in the watchmaking arena. They are about the possibilities that emerge when performance enters new territories. Triggered by a pusher, a specially developed micro-generator stores and dispels the energy to activate 8 or 13 meticulously positioned LEDs, according to the version. These then visibly spread light evenly across the dial, mimicking a natural wave. Element by element, the illumination reveals the various “stories” that make up the piece’s time-telling capacity, never allowing us to lose sight of time’s unstoppable flow.
Two variations on the FLOW theme, both limited editions, play very different games with the emitted light.
The first is an execution which addresses the concept of infinity through a precisely tapered vortex shape. Here the imagination is invited to visualize a revolving, apparently never-ending flow down towards the bellows, as a side-aperture welcomes the light emitted by 8 LEDs. The limitlessness of infinity fits neatly into the focus on time’s inevitable transience.
And in the second, a dome of 73 baguette-cut 1.7-carat diamonds dances spectacularly to rhythms derived from the 13 LEDs below it. Just as time’s flow is constant, this unique horological light show is a theatre for continual, energized change uniting jewelry and light thanks to the dynamic reflection and refraction. Innovation meets beauty and quite literally dances the night away.
In the HYT FLOW, opposites do far more than attract – they form a rich source of design energy. An apparently contradictory combination of liquid and electric light set the scene; the bold asymmetrical shape of the 51 mm case and vibrant color choices pick up the thread. A visual wave sweeps around its side, reminding that stopping time’s momentum is never an option. This well-considered curve tempts the eye to explore new perspectives on time, a vital element of modern life.
A ring of Super-LumiNova® documents the antithesis of night and day. Polished accents on the circular-brushed case underline specific elements such as bezel angles. This is an appropriate overture to the three-dimensional character of the opaline-finished grey dials, where “metallic” and “velvety” sit together comfortably in the descriptive dictionary. Sophisticated electro-erosion adds a further signature to the theme of tension with its use of electric current to physically cut out strips of metal to obtain the wave illusion. The high-energy appearance of the dials’ backgrounds contrasts with the calmer, more minimalistic time indication. Concave and convex surfaces tease each other, as the eye peeps behind the waves to catch a glimpse of the intriguing mechanical mechanism below.
It’s flow time. 24/7.
HYT innovates with its use of their proprietary and unique liquid technology, using fluids in capillary tubes to show the passage of the hours, and coupled with a more traditional minutes, seconds and a power reserve indicator. Though HYT does not state this in the documentation we received, the movement is the first HYT H1, which is developed in collaboration with Jean-Francois Mojon of Chronode. The H1 was the movement HYT launched its watches in.
This is not the first time LED lighting is used in a HYT, but it is still a very innovative concept, and one which we have not seen elsewhere. We first saw it in the Alinghi H4 and the H4 Metropolis, which debuted the concept of using its own set of 2 LED lights, powered by a miniature generator. Rather than having to make a fluid which is able to glow in the dark, and hence allowing the hours to be read without light, HYT’s solution was to create this LED lighting system.
The case with the large domed crystal is largely also based on the H0 with the H1 movement and later the H2O with the higher specification H2 movement, which reveals more of the movement, allowing the case sides to be shown through the transparent domed part of the crystal.
From the press photographs we received, it was not possible to see the view of the H1 bellows through the vortex, as there is no direct flat photograph. We look forward to seeing and handling the watch soon, and to do our own photography.
More details on the HYT FLOW site.