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Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

As we had to have discussed many times before, there is a special place inside Jaeger-LeCoultre. A place where the sun doesn’t shine, a cozy and warm place with controlled humidity. Naturally, we are talking about their archives – irresistibly inviting for many when looking for “new” product ideas. Fortunately for us, the manufacture appears to have pulled their heads out of it and given us a rather refreshing pre-SIHH 2019 release in the beautiful shape of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

Before we discussed the watch, let me point out something real quick. I am not sure how many have joined me in mocking the brand for systematically and irritatingly referring to itself as “the Maison” in its English communication, but either plenty of us had been doing it for long enough, or perhaps it is just sheer coincidence, but can I just say how I appreciate the use of “Manufacture” in its place in this pre-SIHH 2019 press release. I do tend to criticize and mock, yes, but if there’s an improvement, small or large, I do keep an eye out for it and appreciate its presence. Pretentiousness levels just dropped dramatically in this text – about time for a manufacture as elegant and holier-than-thou as Jaeger-LeCoultre.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

Speaking of improvements, this new Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel looks pretty darn cool and pretty darn promising conceptually. I say that because the highest quality images I could officially source are still pretty low in resolution (2,500px wide with lots of black space) and are super over-sharpened, so the quality of the hands and, more importantly, the dial, are impossible to assess. Fortunately, we don’t have to wait for too long before we can bring you a closer look at it from Geneva in mid-January.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

Yes, the blue enamel dial is pretty, but there are more important developments here – so we’ll chat about the dial in just a bit. First, the case is a most welcome 39mm wide, eliminating almost entirely the bloated and inflated look that some other watches suffer from in favor of a larger wrist-print. Talking about the case, it is a bummer that it apparently only comes in 18ct white gold for now which will certainly entail a considerable price premium over steel pieces in the Master line. Although my first thought was “That’s to make up for the expensive enamel dial!” I then remembered that Seiko does pretty bonkers enamel and lacquer work too, for prices ranging from $1,100 here to $2,850 here… And while I’ll never know for sure, I really don’t think wages of specialist craftsmen are that much (if at all) lower in Japan than in rural Switzerland.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

Getting back on the positive side of things, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Caliber 925/2 automatic caliber boasts a 70-hour power reserve, much longer than the 38 or 40 hours we have been seeing on “new” models launched as recently as last year with the Polaris, my critical review of which can be found here. The movement is still unbelievably small, leaving massive side-walls on the case-back on this 39-millimeter-wide watch – and although this new piece is proudly called “Master Ultra Thin,” with a case coming in at 10.04mm thick, it is far from being thin – and that much further from being Ultra Thin. The Swiss certainly aren’t new to the art of self-aggrandizement, but it is rare that we have basic physical measurements helping us identify just how carried away they can get sometimes. It’s like BMW calling their new 3-Series the Ultra Fast.

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Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

There’s a beautiful case profile to take the edge off that admittedly relative heft. A practice I can really get behind is a thin case band paired with multi-tiered bezels. On some watches the case-band is too thin and gives away the fact there’s something fishy going on, but here the thin, polished profile stays close to the lowest point of the case-back and consequently close to the wrist – unlike on some thicker Omega Speedmasters, where it looks as though the watch was levitating above the wrist. The thickness is further justified by the thicker dial and the phase of the moon indication – the latter still entails the corrector pusher which is a rather dated technical solution.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

The dial of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel the brand refers to as “blue guilloche enamel,” which is rather descriptive, actually. Both guillochage and enameling belong to the Rare Handcrafts which Jaeger-LeCoultre have kept alive through generations – performing these in-house, I think, is extremely important for us watch lovers and is in the very best interest of the brands as well. As anyone who’s ever seen these in person will agree, both enamel and guilloche decorations are special in that the effects and aesthetics that they create are truly inimitable and cannot be replicated by any other technique. The deep, saturated glow of enamel and the three-dimensionality of guilloche patterns make for some of the highest-quality surfaces in watchmaking.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

The deeper I dug into the details of the new-for-2019 Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel, the more deflated my enthusiasm became. It looks really very nice and promising, but it isn’t as thin and, much more importantly, I fear it won’t be as affordable and as widely available as I would have liked it to be to make any difference whatsoever – this piece, reference Q13635E1, comes in a limited run of just 100 pieces, just enough to cause frustration across the globe among those who will miss out on it. I also see the continuation of this extremely strange and very widespread trend among Richemont brands of placing shiny hands over shiny dials – seriously, note this and start keeping an eye out for it and you’ll see that for some reason this is a thing all across Richemont.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Dress Watch Watch Releases

All this said, I have no trouble liking this release because it perpetuates the Master collection and does so in a tasteful, elegant and characteristic way with some old-school craftsmanship thrown in there. Price for the Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon Enamel Q13635E1 will be disclosed closer to SIHH, for whatever reason. Until then, you can scout the official Jaeger-LeCoultre website for more.

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  • SuperStrapper

    It almost appears as a ‘ladies’ version of a MUT moon: imagine a few diamonds in there somewhere to seal the deal. That’s not an insult, the watch is quite attractive. I think it might be the particular shade of blue, coupled with all the shiny.
    My favourite part is seeing the dial unadorned and uninstalled. I’ll just take one of those and carry it in my pocket please

  • Bladeknight

    Exept for the automatique text on the dial, I love this watch.

  • Swiss_Cheese

    May sound strange, but I’d love to have the pre-cut dial, sans moon-phase hole and date circle just to sit on my desk, kind of like an enamel poker chip.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/788eca751b932f09afa0ab0f435550f9a6901ac3f0da8ff4fe06a47344db6603.jpg

  • Rockymet

    I suspect that it was the luxury marketing staff within Richemont that used the term “the Maison”. These watch manufacturers within luxury groups probably don’t have say in their marketing.

    Wonderful watch.

  • PleaseSpellRoman4AsIV

    Let’s hope something similar will make its way to the regular collection, preferably with a steel case.

    Also good to see JLC getting some love on one of their new releases instead of the usual yawns.

  • cluedog12

    Might we be in need of another on the wrist test to determine if your dampened enthusiasm is squib or just?

    • David Bredan

      A hands-on at SIHH at the very least… I’m more concerned with / interested in where things are going with the brand than any one release, so I’m rather more looking forward to the full range of novelties for 2019 (and after).

  • BrJean

    Love both colour and texture. Embossed date numerals are great too.

  • dr3

    This bears a striking resemblance to the Seiko Cocktail Time in blue. I know, I know, level of finishing etc – but from a distance… ?

    • egznyc

      My thoughts exactly! I guess the Seiko would have to be my choice as it’s probably – at just $400-ish, a small fraction of the price of the JLC. And why didn’t the “maison” use platinum instead of white gold? If you’re going precious then go all the way.

  • benjameshodges

    Maybe allowing the crown to adjust the moonphase indication would simultaneously increase the movement diameter and subsequently remove the need for a pusher at 4.

    • David Bredan

      Sounds like a win-win to me. Frankly, every year more since Klaus’ perpetual (all controlled via the crown and developed about 3 decades ago! ) I grow less and less tolerant to these super lazy solutions. The only thing less elegant than the appearance of these pushers is the way one has to use them, looking like a total dork, fiddling with his luxury watch with a pen.

      • egznyc

        I don’t mind the pushers so much for aesthetic reasons but as a practical matter it must dampen the ability to give these watches a decent WR rating (not that it matters so much on a dressy piece).

        Keep up the good work!

  • Absolutely stunning. And kudos to Jaeger for finally starting to update their movements with longer power reserves.

  • Absolutely stunning. And kudos to Jaeger for finally starting to update their movements with longer power reserves.

  • BNABOD

    case looks great the dial looks awesome BUT overall it is so dull I fell asleep. just can’t get passed it.

  • Cuppa Joe

    This is a great write up. I love this watch. LOVE. But two important things:

    1. I heard the price is approx. $35k. If true… I’m speechless. This is a SIGNIFICANT premium over the current 18k white gold standard version. You can get a great Lange or trinity watch for that money.

    2. I love the new moon disk and batons. A huge improvement over the rather bland mood phase indicator used for years and years now. The star field here is really, really nice. And the new batons are elegant and perfectly proportioned.

    This is a big win. Hope the batons and moon phase migrate across the entire MUT line. Hope the price doesn’t.

  • aWtchslvr

    An absolute beauty. And after a long waiting time, a good power reserve. ???

  • PR

    Should’ve been a regular release replacing the current dull and boring MUTM adding a black and white dial variant

  • Pete L

    Beautiful dress watch and that dial is amazing. I Love it, but………….If the comments below are to be believed and its nearly double the cost of the white gold version that’s madness. For that money you could have a WG ultra thin moon AND a steel ultra thin perpetual!

  • What fresh hell is this?

    The thickness of the dial’s guilloche “bars” is a bit inconsistent, or is that just hamfisted post-processing?

  • God wears JLC. In fact, God created JLC ( on the 8th day, after oversleeping due to Genesis fatigue) not only so He can have something nice to wear but also to time smiting all the pagans and other miscellaneous people needing smiting to perfection.

  • JimSixxx

    Beautiful watch. Just love the color. It’s a shame it’s a limited edition.
    In steel it would be a smash hit. In any other metal it would give the Rolex Cellini a run for its money.

  • Velocitor

    I guess JLC got tired of being upstaged by Seiko Presage for interesting dials.

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