In the realm of independent watchmaking, 10 years is a long time given how the realm is littered with the remnants of the many concepts and firms which have failed. When Denis Giguet first launched the MCT Sequential One in 2007, it was revolutionary and exciting much in the same way watchmakers like Urwerk using a never before seen style of time display – prism blocks which expressed analogue mechanical time keeping in digital form; yet, it wasn’t always smooth sailing, a 10 year anniversary might never have been for MCT when the company experienced a little hiccup for a few years before coming back strong with the addition of Pierre Jacques who re-ignited the brand and passions of watch lovers in 2016. For Basel 2017 the MCT Dodekal One D110 not only celebrates the firm’s fortunate corporate milestone but also heralds a new creative innovation – the first mechanical watch featuring unique digital hours display in the centre of the dial.
The MCT Dodekal One D110 follows a series of brave collections which marked the brand’s comeback in 2016 – the Sequential Two S220 Bronze which was a hint of a brand newly in-touch with watchmaking trends and consumer tastes; more importantly, it was endowed with a MCT twist which carefully patinated the case and then stabilised the maturation process so that customers didn’t suddenly find themselves with green “Hulk-esque” monstrosity.
The other was another hint at the company’s willingness to innovate beyond the genius of a 10 year old prism display concept; working with Anish Kapoor, MCT debuted a “blackest of black” material called Vantablack. Named for the Vertically Aligned NanoTube Arrays which are so tightly arranged on a surface that the trapping of over 99% visible light makes the Sequential One — S110 Evo Vantablack a literal dark knight which paves the way aptly for MCT’s new era.
Basel 2017 – MCT Dodekal One D110 with new manufacture movement
If it looks more elegant, it’s not just the result of ab lack titanium and pink gold accented aesthetic (also available in titanium) but also the new 43mm dimension, down from the original 45mm cushion. That said, while “mechanical digital display” has always been MCT’s calling card, the new MCT Dodekal One D110 eschews the prism concept and embraces an all new manufacture movement which draws on 70s electronic watches, once almost a harbinger of doom of the mechanical watch industry. Today, MCT strikes back with the MCT Dodekal One D110.
The manufacture Calibre D1 uses a complex set of cams and carriages to display the hours in the forms of segments in the dial centre, a departure from the regular 3, 6, 9, 12, positions of prism display numerals; the effect is transformative, making the MCT Dodekal One D110 highly legible and a little less daunting to read. Nevertheless, the MCT Dodekal One D110 hasn’t lost the brand’s signature touch – the cool transition effect. The prism concept used slats similar to those on old airport departure boards to convey the change of time but the new MCT Dodekal One D110 enjoys a different but equally mesmerising translational motion of the segments over 2.5 seconds,made possible by a small carriage of numeral components driven by a cam, offering an original and theatrical experience; meanwhile, a flying central hand conveys minutes.
The new 43mm MCT Dodekal One D110 make look like a reduced cushion but there are little details which distinguish the timepiece, finely crafted lugs like a twisted branch taper downwards making the watch a little more comfortable. The 50 hour power reserve timepiece is available in 25 piece limited run for both titanium and titanium black with 5N pink gold editions. The MCT Dodekal One D110 is expected to retail CHF 55,000 and CHF 61,000 respectively.
Also published on Medium.