This year Parmigiani added a moon phase variant to their Tonda 1950 collection, called the Tonda 1950 Lune, which also features a date indicator.
It comes in a stainless steel case with a black dial featuring rhodium-plated indices and luminescent delta-shaped hands, but it is the dial design that stands out.
Not for the first time, Parmigiani have used an open curved date window, a stylistic feature which I rather like in this instance as it provides a balancing counterpoint to the moon phase. As for the vexed (to some) issue of the background colour being different to the dial colour, I’m usually more a fan of colour continuity, but I think the white background actually works well for this new model.
If we get to the key feature of the new watch, this is not the most commonly seen type of lunar indication, with a ‘double window’ leading to quite a different aesthetic. The idea behind it is that you can see the phase of the (rose gold) moon as it looks in both the northern and southern hemispheres (hence the letters ‘N’ and ‘S’). It looks nice enough from an aesthetic point of view but is of limited utility. The text around the moon phase not only has a scale about the number of days left for that cycle (a touch I quite like) but also “New”, “First Quarter”, “Full”, and “Last Quarter” markers for the phases.
Through the back you can see the automatic Calibre PF708 automatic, a variant of the PF702 used in other versions of the Tonda 1950 range with the new additions of a date complication and moon phase indicator via a module. The movement beats at 21,600VPH and has 48 hours of power reserve.
Like the standard base Tonda 1950, the Tonda 1950 Lune has a 39.1mm diametre case. However, with the addition of the complication module has come an extra 2mm of thickness, making it 9.6mm thick. To ensure balance for this thicker case, the crown’s size has also been slightly increased. It being Parmigiani, the watch comes on an Hermès alligator strap.
With so many moon phase watches on the market a point of differentiation is a way of attracting a wandering watch eye. I say this in part because we were offered a range of new Parmigiani releases to photograph, and in scanning the new models, it stood out and grabbed my attention. The Tonda 1950 Lune is a handsome watch, so if you’re in the market for a moon phase, here’s a new one to consider.