March 28, 2023
Tonda 1950 Tourbillon, cadran bleu abyss

In 2015, afer two years of research and development, Parmigiani Watch Review presented an ultra-thin tourbillon, the Tonda 1950 Tourbillon. Its 3.4-mm-thick calibre made it the thinnest self-winding flying tourbillon in the world. In 2017, the spotlight is back on the Tonda 1950 Tourbillon, which is unveiled in a version with an Abyss blue dial, a white gold case and a Hermès indigo blue alligator strap.

The calibre PF517 owes its thinness to a micro-rotor made from 950 platinum and a precise arrangement of the movement components. The flying tourbillon, the barrel and the micro-rotor are arranged on the same main plate, which means there are no successive levels to increase the thickness, and the time display is kept central – a rarity for an ultra-thin tourbillon. Flush with the surface, the flying tourbillon offers the wearer a truly captivating spectacle.

Tonda 1950 Tourbillon, cadran bleu abyss

Tonda 1950 Tourbillon, Abyss blue dial © Parmigiani Fleurier

Parmigiani Fleurier has developed two technical improvements to optimise the chronometry of the calibre PF517. Firstly, the titanium tourbillon cage is extremely light(0.255 grams). Its very low weight and inertia enable rotational movement with no loss of torque. The tourbillon’s efficiency is increased, thus improving the timepiece’s chronometry. The tourbillon cage completes one rotation every 60 seconds to allow the minutes to be measured. Secondly, Parmigiani has opted for a variable inertia balance instead of a screw balance. This enables the tourbillon cage to be designed with a sleek shape, which leads to improved aerodynamics and better overall stability in the tourbillon’s operation.

What is not entirely traditional is that the Ovale XL case, which aBlogtoWatch has reviewed in its different Parmigiani forms here. Personally, I love this case because of its effective combination of elegant appearances, flattering visuals on the wrist, and distinctiveness from many other watch instance styles on the market. What is better is how comfy the Ovale feels, and the way that it looks comfortable yet not like other things on the market. Patek Philippe for several years tried to maintain the value of a situation similar to this in the Ellipse. Though, Parmigiani is the one that made this elliptical circle shape a good choice for modern men’s watches.This new for 2017 Parmigiani Ovale XL Tourbillon introduces a “blue abyss” coloured dial which has a blue colour applied over a metal base which is decorated with vertical Côtes de Genève-style stripes. You don’t find these on dials all of the time, however they are not as uncommon as they used to be anymore. The hour markers are applied 18k rose gold, to match the situation material and color.Compare the envisioned Ovale XL Tourbillon using the Côtes de Genève dial to the other Parmigiani Ovale XL Tourbillon from 2014. You can observe how Parmigiani likes to play around with a great deal of dial styles. The former version had a semi-skeletonized dial, marginally different hour mark, and another power reserve indicator. The upside of that sooner model is being able to see more of this hand-decorated movement throughout the dialup, but I like the higher feeling of symmetry on this reference PFH750-1000600-HA3141 version.
Tonda 1950 Tourbillon, cadran bleu abyss

The automatic caliber PF517 can be admired through the sapphire crystal of the caseback © Parmigiani Fleurier

The tourbillon, located at 07:08, refers to the time of Michel Parmigiani’s birth in Val-de-Travers, Switzerland. The decoration on the movement bridges features the same oblique orientation as a series of Côtes de Genève stripes, in a circular arc design – a highly complex decorative technique mastered by the brand’s craftsmen.