The Ressence Type 8C – The Minimalist Watch with Maximum ImpactBy Ross Povey
I remember quite vividly my first encounter with a Ressence watch in the mid-2010s at Baselworld. Once I had decoded the dial, I was completely obsessed with the fact that the entire watch was filled with oil. The combination of the distortion-free view that the oil facilitated fused with the perpetual motion of the entire face of the watch was incredible to me and also to the rest of the watchmaking world — the brand won the Horological Revelation prize at the GPHG in 2013, the year that the Type 3 was launched.
Ressence’s new Type 8 is a new entry-level watch, price-wise, for the brand but it certainly packs a mighty punch! One of Ressence’s founding principles was to express how we tell time in the purest possible way. The new Type 8 pares this back to the very minimum with a time-only layout that consists of simply hours and minutes. Both elements exist on separate indicators that, like time itself, never keep still, yet are very simple to read. The main element of the dial is a cobalt blue domed piece of titanium that has a minute hand printed on it. This disk rotates and allows the eye to reference the minute markers that are on a stationary lip around the dial’s circumference. Within this disk sits the hour “hand” that is also a disc within a disc that, whilst moving to display legible hours, also moves around the dial. I’ve done a pretty good job of making this sound complex, and anything less would not do the incredible ingenuity behind this watch justice. In reality, however, it looks simple and is very easy to use.
So, just how is this non-conventional, “non-central hands” time-telling machine executed behind the scenes? The Ressence Orbital Convex System (ROCS) operates on a series of jewel ball-bearings that are adapted to work on a heavily modified ETA caliber 2892/2 automatic movement. The watch is completely oil-free and has a 36-hour power reserve.
The entire mechanical marvel is housed in a substantial 42.9mm titanium case that weighs in at a featherweight 42 grams. The tapered case has both polished and satin-brushed finishes and has a sandwich-stye construction. The brand refers to the case profile as “eggshell shaped,” and it features a skirt extending from the case body that obscures the lugs, giving the watch a very clean and almost floating appearance. Adding to this minimal look is the fact that instead of a traditional winding crown, the watch’s caseback acts as a winder and setting wheel in one.
In a horological universe that seems to be dominated by re-editions and riffs on standard classics at this price point, the Ressence offers a glimpse into a different reality and the opportunity to acquire something that is as revolutionary as it is cool. Who wouldn’t love that?!
Ressence Type 8C
Movement: Self-winding ROCS 8 — Ressence Orbital Convex System — driven by the minute axle of a customized and reinforced 2892/2 base caliber; 36 hours of power reserve
Functions: Hours and minutes
Case: 42.9mm x 11mm; grade 5 titanium
Dial: Matte cobalt blue titanium convex dial
Strap: Blue leather with polished ardillon buckle in grade 5 titanium
Price: CHF 12,500
Availability: Worldwide from March 30, 2022 via Ressence’s official retailer network