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At a time when every watch brand seems to be scouring the dusty alcoves of its archives for each new release, CODE41 is resolutely modern in both its design and approach to watchmaking. The young Swiss brand utilizes cutting-edge materials and intriguing complications — and involves its community of owners and enthusiasts in every step of the design process. Better yet, with its commitment to Total Transparency of Origin, you know exactly where your money’s going. The result is watches like the NB24 Edition 3, a distinctly modern chronograph with a dial-side peripheral rotor, a new colorway, and an entirely new case design.

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For those unfamiliar with the brand, CODE41 was founded in 2016 by luxury watch designer Claudio D’Amore. Having designed watches for some of the biggest names in the industry, he was more than familiar with the limitations of traditional watchmaking and set out to create a brand that was based around engaging a community of enthusiasts in the design process. With half a million fans of the brand now engaged, it’s safe to say that D’Amore’s vision has resonated far and wide.

As with the previous edition, the third edition of the NB24 in the NativeDNA case is available in two materials — Grade 5 titanium or AeroCarbon. Titanium, with its incredible strength-to-weight ratio, weighs 43% less than stainless steel, yet remains strong enough to be the go-to material in the aerospace industry — not to mention titanium’s other perks like being hypoallergenic, corrosion resistant, and temperature resistant. The result is a chronograph that weighs only 78 grams without the strap.

Though many would argue that titanium is the ideal material if you’re looking for a watch that’s strong and lightweight, CODE41 wanted to take things a step further by offering the NB24 in AeroCarbon. Made in France for the Aerospace industry, AeroCarbon is created by aligning hundreds of layers of carbon fiber and compacting them under extreme pressure in an autoclave oven. What results is a space-age composite that’s incredibly light (again, 68 grams for the watch without strap), yet 2.5x more resistant to bending than steel. On top of that, the aesthetic is raw and organic, but thoroughly modern.

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With the latest edition, CODE41 is also offering the NB24 with its Stratom case. Like the NativeDNA case, the Stratom case is crafted from Grade 5 titanium; however, the Stratom case, with its barrel shape, exposed screws, and multi-level construction, is a sportier and even more striking take on the NB24. The short lug-to-lug distance of the Stratom case and its ergonomic case shape ensures that the Stratom wears light and comfortable on a wide range of wrists.

In developing the movement for the NB24, CODE41’s goal was to ensure reliability and longevity, CODE41 based its automatic chronograph caliber on the movement architecture of the time-tested Valjoux 7750. Partnering with Swiss manufacturer Concepto, CODE41 modified the movement to its specifications and recreated all the components in-house (with the exception of the jewels and mainspring). In addition, CODE41 added its own twist in the form of a dial-side peripheral rotor and tweaked the layout by moving the counters and redesigning the bridges. To ensure accurate timekeeping, the movement is regulated to -5/+5 seconds/day and tested in five positions.

The peripheral rotor is a complication used by few brands due to the challenges of manufacturing. With the NB24, however, CODE41 takes things a step further by placing the oscillating weight on the dial side, allowing it to glide along the periphery, and adding a dynamic visual element to the dial. Peripheral rotors are rare enough, but to find one at the price point of the NB24 is virtually unheard of. For context, the peripheral rotor complication represents one-third of the NB24’s production cost.

Though the rotor sliding along the periphery of the dial is certainly a standout, that’s not the only striking feature on the dial of the NB24. True to the brand’s ultra-modern design philosophy, you get a fully open-worked dial with multiple layers, strong angles, and a dial that showcases the mechanics beneath. Since CODE41 isn’t one to stick with the status quo, it substitutes rotating discs for the chronograph registers in place of hands.

In addition to the two case shapes and material options (for the Native DNA case), CODE41 also gives you the choice of four colorways: black, red, blue, and a vibrant new orange option. Each is available on a custom titanium bracelet, leather rally strap, or rubber strap.

The NB24 in its new Stratom case will be available for $7,200 USD, with pre-orders open from September 20 to October 18, 2023, and delivery slated for summer 2024. Only 200 pieces of the NB24 Stratom will be created. However, if you’re after an NB24 with the NativeDNA case, you can pick one up now, with prices starting at $6,600 USD. To learn more about CODE41 and the NB24, please visit the brand’s website.

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