Square Bang Unico: Hublot Squared￼20 September 2022
They say that there is always a first time in life – a motto that suits watchmaking and also, and above all, a daring and surprising brand like Hublot. What was the Nyon brand missing after experimenting with materials, combinations, new calibers and daring complications? Perhaps one of the most common things: a different design like that of the square case.
This design is not unusual in watchmaking, but it’s unusual for Hublot. In its collections, we find watches with round cases, with tonneau cases, and the so-called MP watches – the “master pieces” that come out of the ordinary. It was only a matter of time for Hublot to offer an interpretation of the square case according to its own criteria, giving life to the Square Bang Unico.
A watch that we, at WATCH INSANITY, had the opportunity to photoshoot exclusively in its King Gold version, which is the synthesis of Hublot’s modern savoir-faire and payoff, “The Art of Fusion.” And while you enjoy these pictures, let’s discover together some of the watch’s details to understand the spirit that the brand has instilled into the square shape.
SQUARE BANG UNICO – THE MISSING CASE
There are far fewer popular square watches on the market than round ones. Hublot had never experimented with a square watch, and with the Square Bang it does it well. In thinking about the product, the brand didn’t start from the shape but put itself in the shoes of those enthusiasts who really like to wear this kind of timepiece.
Wearing a square case on your wrist is a bold choice, perhaps not for every day, but it is an interesting alternative to round watches. So, we think Hublot’s strategy is to offer Big Bang fans a new way to enjoy something they already love, but in a new fashion.
The message of the Square Bang Unico is that the Big Bang is more than just a case shape. It is a concept of the brand’s DNA that can be equally represented in a round, tonneau or square case. Talking about this last shape, the Big Bang is simply another nuance of the collection born in 2004; with it, Hublot claims that its most popular watches are timeless.
Perhaps Hublot really hoped that, looking at the design of the Square Bang Unico, the enthusiasts would ask themselves: “But hasn’t the Big Bang always been square?” A question that is the testimony of the excellent work done on the watch: when you see something new and it seems to have always existed. You wear the Square Bang Unico and it looks like something that has always been part of the collection, only in a different shape.
HUBLOT BETWEEN AESTHETICS AND FUSION
A shape that starts with the 42mm modular construction of the case, designed in line with Hublot’s DNA, with a central housing dressed with an upper and lower plate. This solution enables different combinations and transformations, and is typical of Hublot technology.
A technology that has had to deal with the first of the problems that the master watchmakers face with square cases: water resistance. It is easy to understand that it is more difficult to make a waterproof square case, because its corners are weak points from which water can seep in. After all, Hublot means porthole, and ship portholes are round precisely because they are easily waterproof. Despite this, the case of the Square Bang Unico has a guaranteed water resistance up to 10 bar.
The case is made of different materials: ceramic for the All Black reference, titanium and ceramic for the Titanium Ceramic, titanium for the Titanium, King Gold and ceramic for the King Gold Ceramic, and King Gold for the watch that is the protagonist of our shooting. King Gold is an example of Hublot’s “alchemical” ability: it is an alloy with a warmer color than the classic 18-karat 5N gold, because it mainly contains platinum.
The dial is also made in classic Hublot style, starting with its sandwich scaffolding. A solution that has a functional and aesthetic character, giving different levels of depth and a highly architectural feel. As with the Big Bang, the Square Bang Unico dial makes extensive use of sapphire to give a clear view of the Unico movement. The same sapphire crystal that is on top of the case almost disappears from sight: if it were not for the silkscreened Hublot logo, it wouldn’t even seem to be there.
Other unmistakable references to the Big Bang’s DNA are the six functional screws on the bezel and the lugs from the Big Bang case, providing balance to the design while protecting the case.
THE UNICO CALIBER
The heart of the Square Bang Unico is the trusty HUB1280 Unico Manufacture caliber, an automatic column wheel flyback chronograph derived from the HUB1240. Like the latter, it has two important features: the 72-hour power reserve and the 28,800 vibrations / hour frequency.
Both the double clutch and the column wheel of the movement can be seen through the watch dial. A vision that also allows you to appreciate how, in the Square Bang Unico, Hublot has harmoniously inserted a round caliber inside a square case. A non-ordinary work that, thanks to the smart use of sapphire, does not hide the movement (as often happens with round movements in shaped cases) but reveals it down to its intimate details. Such as the column wheel, visible at 6 o’clock.
Even in creating the watch’s rubber strap, Hublot left nothing to chance. If the One Click system for quick release and change is a feature of the Big Bang collection (and more), its design is specific to the Square Bang Unico. The texture includes four rows (like the four sides of the case) of embossed squares (like the bezel on the case). The folding buckle is in the same material as the case.
Finally, the prices of the references. The All Black version, a limited edition of 250 pieces, costs €25,900; the Titanium Ceramic, €23,800; the Titanium, €22,700; the King Gold Ceramic, €39,400; and the King Gold of our shooting, €42,500. An wide range of prices that confirms the strategy implemented by the brand with the Square Bang Unico: offering watches which will become icons – so Hublot hopes – available in various materials, styles and shapes is a strong way to affirm the importance of the brand’s own style and products.
By Davide Passoni