Velociphile is not one to mince words, but he really tears my beloved Big Bang (Hublot continues “their dull theme of apeing the Royal Oak albeit without nicely aligned bezel screws”) a new pooper. The most egregious offense? Calling a modified ETA movement an “in-house” piece.

My view is simple. The predominating IP in this design is from outside ETA/Valjoux. All the tricky side of it, the tolerancing, productionisation and so on was hard won by Valjoux a long time ago. Making it to drawing is easy peasy; simply substituting another material and upgrading with a few bushes and bits and bobs no great shakes. I have no evidence but would surmise Hublot still buy in the geartrain and possibly escapement from ETA. And, you can anglage and polish it till you can see your face think Lemania 2310 in Patek 5070 but it doesnt change its genes and the fact that Hublot had NO part in creating the base clever, super cheap and effective tractor. However, admittedly, what theyve done is at least one step – no lets be generous two steps – up from buying in a finished movement.

Velociphiles Journey into Watches

By John Biggs

John lives in Brooklyn and has loved watches since he got his first Swatch Irony automatic in 1998. He is the editor of WristWatchReview.

2 thoughts on “Velociphile tears into the Big Bang”
  1. I am not sure where you get the idea that Hublot “aped” the Royal Oak. The only similarity between the two is the bezel that is screwed down with screws. The innovation in the Big Bang was the use of non-traditional watch making materials and combining them in an aesthetic fashion. I have owned a Royal Oak and own a Big Bang and from a comfort and design I much prefer the Big Bang. Combining carbon fiber, kevlar, titanium, ceramic and steel or gold in a single watch is I believe a Hublot creation. As to the movement, they are no different than many other high end watches in starting with a base ETA movement and adding to it and adding extra finishing. Soon they will have their own movement in the UNICO and this argument will be somewhat meaningless.

    Finally, using an ETA or Valjoux movement as a base has some real advantages in that they are proven and reliable movements that don’t cost an arm and a leg to repair. Having owned Pateks and having experienced repair service with Patek and the costs I can tell you that it was no more relaible but a heck of a lot more expensive to have serviced.

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