Audemars Piguet Does All Black Ceramic for the Royal Oak Supersonnerie

An unconventional material paired with the striking innovation.

Audemars Piguet turned to an unorthodox material for its latest striking timepiece, the Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie in black ceramic. Introduced in two variations, one with white gold markers and the other with baguette-diamond indices, the monochromatic new reference is the next step in this historic brand’s long history of chiming watches. 

Initial thoughts

Overall, this is an excellent update to a watch that was already very good. The original Royal Oak Supersonnerie is entirely in titanium, a lightweight metal with good acoustic qualities, and has very subtle aesthetics with a smoked grey dial. In contrast, the new all-black ceramic repeater feels more modern and in-line with what we have come to expect from Audemars Piguet, especially for the Royal Oak that has always been available in unconventional materials ranging from carbon composite to BMG.

The inherent contradiction of an extremely expensive striking watch in a material not usually suited for transmitting sound is obvious. Yet it is also logical since it demonstrates the function of the brand’s proprietary Supersonnerie amplifying system that arguably transcends the case material.

The titanium Supersonnie strikes loud and clear, but we have yet to hear the ceramic repeater strike in real life. It would certainly be interesting to have them both side-by-side to compare.

While the brand already has several Royal Oak models with bracelets in ceramic, the new repeater is debuted only on a rubber strap. It gives the watch a more sporty and casual feel, doubling down on the wonderful contradiction that blends high horology and contemporary, sporty aesthetics.

No comment has yet been made from the brand as to how many of these are going to be made and the price is available only upon request, but it would be at least US$350,000.

Blacked out

The new take on the Royal Oak Supersonnerie transforms it into an all-black affair. It is available in two guises: both have the same black tapisserie dial, but one has traditional white gold baton markers and the other is discreetly decorated with baguette-cut diamond indices. 

The version with baguette-diamond hour markers

The 42 mm by 14 mm case is constructed entirely out of black ceramic, including the case back. The standout feature is of course the Supersonnerie case that allows the case to become an excellent transmitter of sound, despite ceramic not being an ideal material for that.

We go into a deeper explanation of the Supersonnerie in an earlier article, but in brief, the Supersonnerie improves the repeater sound primarily through the case construction. The gongs are attached to a titanium sound board instead of the base plate. This sound board resonates with the gongs, increasing the volume of the chimes, which is then transmitted through the holes in the outer case back. Pair this with the near silent fly-wheel governor and result is clear and audible chimes.

As the Supersonnerie is centred on the case construction, the movement remains similar to earlier generations of AP repeaters. The cal. 2953 is based the cal. 2937 found in the Royal Oak Concept Supersonnerie from 2015, which in turn is based on a movement developed in the 1990s, but since upgraded with features like a 72 hour power reserve.

Although it has the same dimensions as the titanium model that was rated to 30 m, this has slightly decreased water resistance of 20 m, likely due to the case construction constraints imposed by the nature of ceramic. Still, 20 m is more than that of most classical minute repeaters that are not water resistant at all.

Key facts and price

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Minute Repeater Supersonnerie
Ref. 26591CE.OO.D002CA.01 (white gold markers)
Ref.26591CE.OO.D002CA.02 (diamond markers)

Diameter: 42 mm
Height: 14 mm
Material: Ceramic
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 20 m

Movement: Cal. 2953
Functions: Hours, minutes and minute repeater
Winding: Manual
Frequency: 21,600 beats per hours (3 Hz)
Power reserve: 72 hours

Strap: Rubber with folding clasp

Limited edition: No
Availability: At AP Houses and boutiques
Price: Price on Request

For more information, visit


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Audemars Piguet Introduces the Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin Titanium BMG

A smoked burgundy dial and bulk metallic glass bezel.

Audemars Piguet has unveiled a fresh rendition of the famed Royal Oak “Jumbo” with the Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin Titanium BMG ref. 16202XT. Featuring a smoked burgundy dial, this latest version is set apart by its materials – a titanium case complemented by a bulk metallic glass (BMG) bezel – that are the same as those of the unique ref. 15202XT created for Only Watch 2021

Initial thoughts

While the classical steel “Jumbo” gets most of the attention, the most interesting version of the ref. 16202 in my view is the platinum model, mainly due to the smoked green dial. The platinum model has an appealing radial brushed finish on the dial that was exclusive to that variant, making it quite different from the usual tapisserie guilloche. It’s good to see the same dial finish on another model, and this time with an even more striking burgundy red dial.

What sets the new “Jumbo” apart are the case materials: titanium and BMG. Though the materials are identical to the Only Watch edition, the finishing is different. The Only Watch edition was mostly sandblasted. This, on the other hand, has the conventional brushed finish of the Royal Oak. And of course the movements differ between the ref. 15202 and ref. 16202.

Still, this remains a “Jumbo” is most respects – size, shape, and style. Yet, with its smoked dial and unusual case material, it becomes an interesting new watch. Whilst it will become part of the permanent collection, it will presumably be produced in less-than-significant quantities. That said, given the well-established slowdown in demand for such watches, landing one might be more possible than it was a 18 months ago.


The new “Jumbo” clearly draws significant inspiration from the one-of-a-kind ref. 15202XT created for the Only Watch charity auction in 2021. The case materials, titanium and BMG, are identical.

Titanium is a well-established material in watchmaking, but the same cannot be said for BMG, here in an alloy that includes palladium. Also known as amorphous metal, BMG lacks the ordered-crystal structure found in conventional alloys. Instead, it has a structureless grouping of atoms akin to glass that is achieved by cooling the liquid alloy rapidly.

The Royal Oak “Jumbo” ref. 15202XT made for Only Watch 2021. Image – Audemars Piguet

Unlike the Only Watch “Jumbo,” this timepiece has a brushed case and bracelet as is convention for the Royal Oak. The brushed components are framed by mirror-polished bevels, delineating the edges of both the case and bracelet. Meanwhile, the BMG components, namely the bezel and centre links, have a polished finish.

Another noteworthy aspect of this new release is the dial. Unlike the typical Royal Oak dial that features a chequerboard tapisserie pattern, this boasts a radially brushed finish with a red-to-black gradient. The dial finish evokes the platinum version ref. 15202, but unusually this has pink gold indices that complement the reddish dial, instead of the usual colour-matching indices and hands that go with the case colour. Also notable is the tone-on-tone date disc that camouflages the date display somewhat.

Other than the dial colour and case material, the rest of the watch conforms to those of the standard “Jumbo” ref. 16202. The case measures 39 mm in diameter and 8.1 mm high.

Housed inside is the cal. 7121, which made its debut last year during the Royal Oak’s 50th anniversary. While maintaining the slim profile of its predecessor but boasting enhanced user-friendliness. It incorporates a quick-set date function, offers a respectable 55-hour power reserve (impressive given its slender build), and includes a full balance bridge that enhances stability and shock resistance.

Key facts and price

Audemars Piguet Royal Oak “Jumbo” Extra-Thin 39 mm
Ref. 16202XT.OO.1240XT.01

Diameter: 39 mm
Height: 8.1 mm
Material: Titanium and bulk metallic glass
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 50 m

Movement: Cal. 7121
Functions: Hours, minutes and date
Winding: Automatic
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hours (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 55 hours

Strap: Matching bracelet

Limited edition: No
Availability: At AP Houses and boutiques
Price: Price on Request

For more information, visit


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