Monochrome Watches
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The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie in Titanium

The 2.0 minute repeater in a lightweight, sporty attire.

| By Brice Goulard | 3 min read |
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie Titanium Smoked Grey Dial - 26591TI.OO.1252TI.03

While the “Royal Oak” part of this watch is something that might feel familiar to most of you, there’s another part of the name of this impressive Audemars Piguet that will certainly need some more explanations, and that is the “Supersonnerie” part… The 2.0 version of the minute repeater, a watch that carries 3 patents and multiple unprecedented technical solutions, the Supersonnerie is all about remarkable acoustic performances – an idea that goes back to the 2016 Concept RD1 Acoustic Research Minute Repeater. Today, the brand is unveiling a new version of its Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie, entirely crafted in titanium, with a smoked grey dial.

The Supersonnerie concept

Developed by Audemars Piguet and launched in 2016 in the Royal Oak Concept collection, the Supersonnerie mechanism endows this new minute repeater model with the volume and resonance usually associated with pocket watches. This patented technology results from 8 years of research in collaboration with EPFL, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne. Inspired by the sonic power of older minute repeater watches as well as by the harmony of musical instruments, a dedicated community of watchmakers, technicians, academics and musicians reviewed the case construction to produce a new chiming technology. It has since been applied to an even more complex Grande Sonnerie Carillon.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie Titanium Smoked Grey Dial - 26591TI.OO.1252TI.03

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While the architecture of the movement itself and the way the time is stroke is fairly similar to other minute repeater watches, the brand has worked on multiple aspects to enhance the acoustic performance and upgrade the sound quality and harmonic tone. For instance, the gongs are not attached to the mainplate, but to a new device acting as a soundboard, which improves sound transmission and boosts sound amplification – the module visible on the caseback, acting as a resonator. Also, the striking regulator – the device that sets the pace of the hours, quarters and minutes chiming sequence – has been revised and now incorporates an innovative, more flexible anchor system that absorbs shocks and eliminates unwanted noise. Furthermore, an astute mechanical modification of the chiming sequence has mitigated the quarter-hour pause between the chiming of the minutes and the hours, when the watch does not strike the quarter hours. Last but not least, a security function prevents the wearer from activating the hand-setting function while the minute repeater mechanism is striking.

The Supersonnerie function is powered by the in-house Calibre 2953, a hand-wound movement made of 362 parts and beating at 3Hz. It stores up to 72 hours of power reserve and brings energy to the minute repeater mechanism, as well as the time display.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie Titanium Smoked Grey Dial - 26591TI.OO.1252TI.03

New RO Titanium attire

While the idea of a Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie isn’t new, as we’ve seen already multiple editions of this watch in past years, the brand is now releasing a new, monochromatic and sleek edition of its high-end chiming watch, with new materials and colours.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie Titanium Smoked Grey Dial - 26591TI.OO.1252TI.03

The 42mm case of the RO Supersonnerie is now crafted from grade 5 titanium, with polished and brushed surfaces – all classic for a Royal Oak watch. In addition to being light and resistant, titanium is also a material of choice for a minute repeater, with its characteristic sound and known virtues when it comes to amplifying the chime of the repeater. This new Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie 26591TI is worn on a classic titanium bracelet.

New to the model too is the dial, with the emblematic “Grande Tapisserie” pattern, now offered in a sleek smoked grey colour with gradient effect. The small seconds at 6 o’clock is black-toned and the watch retains the classic white gold applied hour-markers and Royal Oak hands with luminescent coating.

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie Titanium Smoked Grey Dial - 26591TI.OO.1252TI.03

The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie Titanium (ref. 26591TI.OO.1252TI.03) won’t be limited in numbers but production will be, as expected, in low volumes. Price is upon request, but expect in excess of CHF 350,000. For more details, please visit

7 responses

  1. @Gav – indeed. I remember having the ROC Supersonnerie on the wrist, on the crowded AP booth at the SIHH and being amazed at how loud it was… You could hear it loud and clear, even on this noisy environment. And the quality of the “music” itself is also impressive.

  2. @ Brice – What is the best you’ve heard in your time in watch journalism? I went on a binge of watching/listening to all the repeater videos I could find a while ago, and it was a tie between Patek and AP for perfection, followed by Bulgari and Laurent Ferrier surprising me with how good theirs were.
    The most disappointing was Journe’s. Damn shame 🙁

  3. @Gav – I must say, this is a tough one. I’ve heard probably 20 to 25 minute repeaters, but not always in the same conditions. I agree that the AP is impressive. I can also remember playing with a Patek cathedral gong (the 5178G), and yes it was stunning – but to be fair, it was in a super quiet room with no disturbances. And like all things, it also depends on your preferences, as there is nothing really objective in the sound produced by a repeater, except maybe the level in DB.

  4. This is true. But we can tell the bad ones, something that sounds like an emaciated monkey with no sense of rhythm feebly hitting a spoon on a boulder.

    And then the monolith appears.

  5. The one that properly surprised me was the Bulgari Octo Finissimo MR in carbon… the sound was louder and clearer than I expected. It was pretty impressive!

  6. Bulgari seem to know what they’re doing with repeaters. I wonder if they inherited someone who was an expert when they got Genta’s/Roth’s old manufacture. There’s definitely talent there.

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