Introduced in 2013, the Jazzmaster Face-2-Face brings Hamilton’s innovative watchmaking expertise and flair for unconventional design to the fore. Today, Hamilton introduces the third chapter in its fascinating Face-2-Face saga with a swivelling case and two dials with chronograph functions on one and measurement scales and an openworked movement on the other. In a departure from the large oval-shaped cases of the preceding models, the new Hamilton Jazzmaster Face-2-Face III comes in a more compact 44mm round case at an even more accessible price. An out-of-the-ordinary watch, the double-faced Jazzmaster is a limited edition of 999 watches.
Hamilton, the American watch brand that became a Swiss subsidiary of Swatch Group in 2003, revolutionised the watch scene by producing the world’s first electrical battery-operated watch in 1957, the Ventura. That might have been enough to secure its place in the annals of watch history, but it also stood out with its odd shield-shaped design. Still going strong, the Ventura isn’t the only quirky, niche watch in Hamilton’s line-up. The Jazzmaster is another go-to collection for contemporary watches, often with a surprising twist. The Jazzmaster Regulator Cinema, for example, which celebrates Hamilton’s ties to cinema, features rotating film reels on the dial. But if you’re looking for something truly extraordinary, the two dials and pivoting case of the Face-2-Face is where the action is.
The Face-2-Face series – Dual dials, pivoting cases
The Jazzmaster Face-2-Face series, with its surprising swivelling case to reveal two separate dials, appeared in 2013. Pivoting watches with two dials are rare in watchmaking. Jaeger-LeCoultre’s more complicated high-end Reverso models, like the Hybris Mechanica or the Chronograph Retrograde, or even Bovet’s Virtuoso with its patented Amadeo convertible cases are some examples that come to mind.
While we can’t really compare these sophisticated, very high-end models with Haute Horlogerie finishings that are so expensive you have to request their prices, the Hamilton Jazzmaster Face-2-Face models are not afraid of complications and are competitively priced. The first-generation Face-2-Face with a chronograph on one dial and a dressier three-hand timekeeper on the other was powered by two separate movements, and retailed for CHF 5,900, while the 2016 Face-2-Face II Auto Chronograph with chronograph displays on one side and a pulsometer, tachymeter and telemeter on the other powered by a single movement retailed for CHF 3,895. Both are now discontinued, and here’s the third edition…
The Jazzmaster Face-2-Face III
Unlike the two former oval editions, the new Jazzmaster Face-to-Face III has a round 44mm rotating case with a thickness of 17.25mm and 50m water-resistance. Still large, it will undoubtedly be easier to wear than the 53mm oval models. The architecture is bold and contemporary, with short jutting lugs and teardrop-shaped chronograph pushers underscored with brushed and polished surfaces. It is a bold watch, with a lot of presence, but this is what made the series appealing.
Powered by the same automatic base movement found in the 2016 iteration of the Face-2-Face II, the new round case shape means that the indications are now more centred. The hour markers are applied to the silver-coloured peripheral precision minute track that extends out over the dial at 3 o’clock to incorporate the day and date windows.
The black date disc is exposed on the dial and advances underneath the three slightly overlapping and different-sized sub-dials: the blue sub-dial at 6 o’clock records 12-hour elapsed times; the larger anthracite and snailed sub-dial at 9 o’clock is for the running seconds; and the smallest sub-dial at noon indicates 30-minute elapsed times. All three hands on the sub-dials and the hour and minute hands are treated with Super-LumiNova, while the central chronograph seconds hand is blue, matching the 12-hour totaliser.
Measurement Scales and Exposed Movement
Flip the case over, and the second dial reveals a silver tachymeter and a blue pulsometer scale on the periphery indicated by a blued hand (the Face-2-Face II model also featured a telemeter scale that has not been included in this model). Most of the dial is occupied by the automatic H-41 calibre that powers the functions on both dials. What’s interesting to note is that the blued hand on the movement side is connected to the hand that indicates the chronograph seconds, so it runs in an anti-clockwise direction. The somewhat raw, industrial-looking finishings – machined circular graining on the bridges and brushed areas on the openworked rotor – offer a different mood to the dial.
Based on a Valjoux 7750 automatic chronograph movement with day and date and passing-through chronograph seconds hand, calibre H-41 delivers an extended power reserve of 60 hours.
Availability & Price
The Hamilton Jazzmaster Face-2-Face III (reference H32876550) comes on a casual patinated brown leather strap with contrasting blue stitching. A limited edition of 999 pieces, the watch retails for CHF 2,995, EUR 2,995 or USD 2,995. For more information, please visit hamiltonwatch.com.