This year it has been fourteen years ago since A. Lange & Söhne launched their Datograph Perpetual, yet it is still holding a prominent position as one of the most desirable pieces within the collection of the brand. As with many of the watches from this A. Lange & Söhne, is also this timepiece an elegant and classic creation. Day, month, and leap year are indicated in a traditional way, with hands on subdials, as is the day/night indicator. In between them, we find a window for the moon phase display. The outsize date is perhaps the most eyecatching feature of this watch, placed just below the twelve o’clock position, in two rectangular gold-rimmed windows. With this complication does the Datograph Perpetual also honor that typical A. Lange & Söhne tradition of displaying the date in such an oversized fashion.
Although the watch has classic good looks, it can be considered as a gentleman’s sports watch. While it’s case is indeed crafted from white gold, it is also quite substantial with a diameter of 41mm and a height of 13.5mm. The chronograph complication, a feature that makes this perpetual calendar even more desirable, also adds a sportive touch to it. Despite all these complications, have the A. Lange & Söhne’s designers found the perfect ratio of dial versus bezel. The latter is relatively small, leaving plenty of space on the dial to make all the different functions of the watch very legible. A. Lange & Söhne opted to fill in the hour and minute hand with luminous material, giving a subtle a modern touch to its design and enabling you to also read the time with ease in low light conditions.
The movement of the Datograph Perpetual easily meets the expectations you might have had when admiring the font of the watch. It is a manual wind caliber that consists out of 556 parts, of which 223 are dedicated to the calendar mechanism. Incorporating both a chronograph as well as a perpetual calendar into a single movement is challenging, especially with the outsize date. A. Lange & Söhne tackled this challenge by, for example, extending the length of some of the levers that engage in the column wheel. The movement has 45 rubies, of which four are placed in the traditional gold chatons. Combined with a superb finish, does it make that also the movement of the Datograph Perpetual meets the demands of even the most spoiled watch connoisseurs and explains why fourteen years after its introduction, it remains such a desirable piece.