Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda 1950 hands-on by Jason Pitsch
At a mere 7.80 mm thick, probably the first thing you will notice when you see the Parmigiani Fleurier Tonda 1950 — is how thin it is.
By Jason Pitsch for Parmigiani Fleurier
The model we reviewed is presented in a beautiful, fully polished, 39 mm diameter 18K white gold case. And while solid gold has a considerable heft, the case is so sleek that you will barely notice the weight. Thanks to its size and nicely shaped lugs, the Tonda 1950 feels great on the wrist. And like any good dress watch, it easily slides under a dress shirt cuff without snagging.
The Tonda 1950 has one of the thinnest automatic movements on the market. At a mere 2.6 mm thick, it is the definition of ultra-thin. It is quite amazing that Parmigiani Fleurier was able to integrate an automatic winding rotor into such a small caliber. The off-center platinum 950 monobloc micro-rotor not only helps keep the size down, it also allows for the movement to be fully displayed — as opposed to being obstructed by the rotor like the majority of self-winding movements on the market.
Looking through the caseback, you can view the entire movement. And what a view it is.
The PF 701 is a work of art. From the nickel silver mainplate which has been sand-blasted and, circular grained and then rhodium plated. To the bridges which are sand-blasted, rubbed down or Cotes de Geneva decorated and then bevelled by hand and, finally rhodium plated. The wheels are bevelled, sunk, circular-grained on both faces, then gilded before cutting. The micro oscillating weight has been engraved with a wave pattern and polished. No detail is left untouched, or hidden. Like a beautiful woman, this movement is so aesthetically appealing —you can’t help but staring.
It goes without saying that the movement and the entire exterior of the new Tonda 1950 are created entirely in-house, right up to the indexes on the dial.
Speaking of dials, this one has a cream colored dial, with a beautiful grainy texture. The design team chose to omit a date to keep a clean look, and we 100% approve as the uncluttered look is especially elegant on a dress watch. The hour markers have been diamond polished and hand applied to the dial. The Delta-shaped hour and minute hands have been polished and are lume filled.
From the dial, to the movement, to the case, and even perfectly paired chocolate Hermes leather strap, with matching white gold pin buckle — this is haute horology at its best.
There are many nice dress watches on the market to choose from, including thin and ultra-thin models. Nevertheless, if you are looking for a dress watch — and $16,900 is within your budget— you cannot overlook this one. Try one on, we think youʼll be impressed.