De Bethune presents the DB25 World Traveller, an intelligent watch featuring a second time zone and world time expressed with a mysterious display. We found this piece to be particularly exciting because of its signature De Bethune characteristics, brilliant designs matched with well-made and finished movements.
The DB25 World Traveller is equipped with a Second time zone, World time, Day/night indicator, and Jumping date complication. Cased in white gold, it measures 45mm in width and 13.7mm in height. The case is De Bethune’s signature in part due to its iconic cut out integrated lugs design. To make the dial look even more stunning, the glass used is Sapphire crystal with with 1800 vickers anti-reflective coating. Another important feature of the case is the crown; designed to be thin but wide and slightly raised for greater ease in handling. It moves on three notches that are distinguished from one another by their markings.
The DB25 World Traveller is cased in white gold and measures 45 mm in width and 13.7 mm in height.
Starting in the centre, the dial indicates world time, which is set using an almond-shaped pusher at the side of the case. This system works like a traditional quick adjust, and turns the concentric Microlight, by one-hour clockwise jumps. The first time zone, or reference time zone, is displayed with 24-hour markers and indicated with a mysterious display by the position of the microsphere, which appears to float weightlessly in its channel. Using the crown, it can be set in both directions.
The microsphere 24-hour marker is spontaneously a day night indicator. It is two tone, with the blue side representative of night and the pink (5N gold) side for day. The blued leaf hands tells the time and the GMT. Interesting to note, the hours hand moves forward and back by direct jumps of precisely one hour. Finally, the last circle ring on the dial displays the date. The date is coordinated with local time only in the clockwise direction, and indicated by a jumping pointer that is adjusted by a corrector at 10 o’clock.
The dial is very well made. It is designed with the ultimate goal of high legibility and aesthetic polish. We see this with the slightly domed hours ring, which is also highlighted with a powdered effect to intensify the luminosity of the surface. The dial is a culmination of colours. Primarily made in brass, a two tone of champagne and silver is used for contrast to allow legibility. Notably, the blued hands and microsphere is the central attraction of the dial. Designed with features of moving concentric discs and subdials, we thought that the watch theme takes a refreshing allusion to ancient tools used for astronomy.
The watch uses the manual winding mechanical calibre DB2547, the 25th calibre designed, manufactured and assembled in-house by De Bethune. It is said that the movement is the fruit of 10 years of knowledge and inventions developed by Denis Flageollet and his team. Comprising 430 parts, the movement is equipped with several patented designs, such as a self regulating twin barrel power release system. The movement beats at 28,800 vibrations per hour and has 5 days of power reserve.
In terms of finishing, the quality is apparent. For the first time, the central delta bridge is embellished with a “Côtes De Bethune” decoration in the centre, produced using the Microlight micrometric engraving technique developed by De Bethune. The polished plate is hollowed out to become concave and thus intensifies the reflections of light as a result. The regulator is equipped with a new evolution, a titanium balance wheel with white gold inserts, developed particularly for optimal management of temperature variations.
With its “De Bethune” flat terminal curve design, the balance wheel has the capacity to neutralise the effects of temperature variations on the balance spring. The aerodynamic shape was also designed to diminish air resistance, an important source of disruption, to the greatest extent possible. Silicon was chosen for the escapement wheel, due to its light weight and its propensity to increase the power of the calibre. As for the regulator, it is completely maintained by a triple pare-chute shock-absorbing system exclusive to De Bethune. All of these designs are unique to De Bethune and add to the character of the timepiece.
All in all, we thoroughly enjoy the DB25 Traveller. It embodies what we love to see in independent brands. A robust commitment to innovation and designs that can one day be definitive of our time. Furthermore, its attention to engineering and aesthetics has created a timepiece that is a visual spectacle from any angle.