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watches 2008/2009

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FORGET ABOUT TIME - LET THE MOMENT RULE

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obaku harmony

the unity of simplicity

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Merging two things in an artful way means getting rid of everything not really needed. Paring something right down to the bare essentials of simplicity and then giving it life, shape and texture. Obaku Harmony is an exclusive collection of watches with a focus on simple, serene design. This collection is backed by a philosophy of blending the two different traditions of simplicity found in the European and Asian cultures.

simplicity is a lifestyle An oasis of calm, balance and harmony in the midst of a world in constant movement. Regardless of where on the planet we may be we all need our own personal paradise where we find pleasure in the small details. A soft curve, the spray from a wave or the sound of rustling leaves.

the philosophy of obaku harmony The idea that there should be a sense of calm and balance in the items we use to adorn ourselves is what gave birth to the Obaku Harmony collection. In Asia, Zen philosophies have given rise to a natural simplicity – in both thought and act. Obaku Harmony takes its name from a branch of Zen philosophy and has created a universe characterised by a sense of calm – free from all superfluous details. The Northern European countries have a long design tradition featuring functionality and simplicity of composition. Obaku Harmony has inherited the best from both these cultures, and has blended the simplicity found in both.

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obaku harmony

obaku emotions

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infinity

blossom

Obaku Harmony watches feature a design that is both classic and timeless. Infinity watches reflect a relaxed, unpretentious style via simple – yet confident – details. These are watches for people who recognise the importance of time, and who want classic watches with a new twist.

Obaku Harmony design pays tribute to the delicate balance between untamed nature and man-made perfection. Blossom blends both of these, with a bold choice of colour and only partially tamed ruggedness. Together, these represent trendsetting design that exudes confidence. Blossom combines imagination, creativity and elegance in one simple design.

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purity

night

confidence

Purity and simplicity are the core of Obaku Harmony design. Purity is the light, white part of the collection, and reflects discretion in the delicate femininity of its details, with their origin in nature. Experience a flower discreetly patterned in the leather strap, the reflection of mother-of-pearl in the watch face or the sparkle of the crystal.

Carefully considered design is one of the distinguishing features of Obaku Harmony. The design idiom in Night – from the dark part of the collection – radiates both simplicity and the mystique that only the night can bring. Night is for those who appreciate discretion, and who don’t need to demonstrate that time reflects power – it is a luxury we all deserve.

The best way to achieve results is via determination and effort. Obaku Harmony creates Confidence with a dynamic yet simple design to signal the idea of activity via performance. These watches are for the active person who wants to show an assured, physical style.

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v121gcbvb

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Design

Lau Liengård Ruge

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V121 “This watch is created with a simple clean design, yet it has many sophisticated details. There are no legs on the case as on traditional watches and this adds to the sense of complete harmony in the design. The three dimensional dial has clean, detailed graphics and the shape of the hands is well balanced with the rest of the design. Functional and user friendly design.”

V121 Gents size: Ø 41 mm titan glass

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Design

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Christian Mikkelsen

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V120 “This watch has a feminine expression. Its case which curves in a rectangular shape, the beautifully curved legs of the case, its softly rounded crown and slim strap all add to the elegant, clean look. The three dimensional dial creates an image of depth and completes this perfect piece of jewellery.“

V120 Ladies size: w 20.1 - h 29.1 titan glass

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Lau Liengård Ruge

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Design

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V119 “Combining simple, minimalist elegance with a sporty appearance. The top ring is set with 12 stainless steel studs, an elegant and discreet way to indicate the time and create a refreshing, sporty appearance. The easy to read hands and the simple dial design combine to optimize the functionality of this watch.”

V119 Gents size: Ø 42 mm titan glass

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Lau Liengård Ruge

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Design

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V119 Ladies size: Ø 30,8 mm titan glass

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Lau Liengård Ruge

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Design

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V118 “This watch is sporty and practical, yet sophisticated and dressy. The watch is made using the most durable materials. The strap is made of Kevlar, which is 5 times stronger than steel on an equal weight basis. The glass is super crash resistant titan glass. Furthermore, the movement is environmentally friendly using mercury/lead free battery.”

V118 Gents/Ladies size: Ø 30/40 mm titan glass Ecological movement

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the origin of simplicity

We wanted to merge the design idioms from two different cultures. To create a collection of beautiful, exclusive watches based on the idea of simplicity, with features from both the Asian and the Nordic design traditions. It might seem impossible to blend traditions that originate thousands of kilometres apart. Geographical distance means less and less due to globalisation. We now live in a world where similarities and a sense of community continually occur between people spread far and wide. With this as our starting point, Obaku Harmony went on working towards making our dream come true. Our quest for a point where the Nordic and Asian design idioms finally meet led us to a concept that seemed to crop up over and over again. Simplicity. For although these two traditions have been very different throughout history, simplicity is a fundamental element in both of them. In Asia, different life philosophies – such as Zen philosophy – have moulded a set of basic values that pay tribute to simplicity and the search for the essence in life, and of truth and calm. A path of seeking inward for something with deeper meaning. Simplicity is also a feature of the Nordic tradition. By contrast, this stems from practical necessity, not a spiritual philosophy. The focus is on functionality rather than shape, in order to get the most out of the materials used. This is how Obaku Harmony uncovered a set of basic values and a path that blends both traditions. Because merging two things in an artful way means getting rid of everything not really needed.

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Paring something right down to the bare essentials of simplicity, and then giving it life, shape and texture. Obaku is the name of a branch of Zen philosophy – begun in China with numerous subsequent adherents in Japan. The basic belief in Obaku is the search for truth and deeper meaning by delving into the human mind. However, this blending of influences from both Asia and the Nordic countries also reflects the Western interest in the search for meaning in a hectic world, via the ancient philosophies of Asia. We live in an era in which the pace of life is intense, and we are always expected to do our best. Time works both for us and against us. Once in a while, however, we need to seek repose somewhere tranquil – where our senses are free of the constant bombardment of information and impressions. Using both a unique design and a keen sense of detail, Obaku Harmony reflects the aim of finding peace in a straightforward artistic idiom that in no way intrudes, carefully avoiding superfluous decoration and sensory impressions that distract our attention from what is really important. Instead, we find pleasure in an attractive curve, a solitary stone or in the sheer beauty of the material. Obaku Harmony has inherited the best from two cultures.

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Christian Mikkelsen

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Design

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V117 “This watch is made for endurance. With its stainless steel case and band you can rely on this watch to last. The overall design is clean with an easy to read dial. The slim case and the sturdy stainless steel band are merged together beautifully to create a harmonious look. It is made for people who value good design and believe in stability and durability.”

V117 Gents/Ladies size: Ø 40 mm titan glass

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V116 “The large size of the case is made to seem delicate with its slim and slightly curved appearance. The round dial opening in the square design gives the watch an artistic expression. Details such as the graphics on the dial, the slim designer crown and the legs of the case add to the overall harmonic feel of the design.�

V116 Unisex size: w 40 mm - h 40 mm titan glass

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V115 “With its solid stainless steel case and band, this design radiates reliability, endurance and strength. The band is fully integrated into the case and contributes to the clean, minimalist appearance of the watch. The three dimensional dial is rich in details and has a high degree of functionality.”

V115 Gents size: Ø 42 mm titan glass Ecological movement

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V115 Ladies size: Ă˜ 30 mm titan glass Ecological movement

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V114 “This watch is designed with a refreshingly new look. The clean yet sporty design makes it suitable for the young at heart and trendy in style. The curved shape of the large case blends beautifully with the fully integrated leather strap. The dial, the hands and the crown are all designed with an eye for even the smallest detail. This is a watch which will stand the test of time.“

V114 Gents size: w 40 mm - h 44,5 mm titan glass

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Design

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Lau Liengård Ruge

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V113 “Following the Obaku tradition, this watch is created within a clean, simple design idiom. However, there is nothing simple about the thoughts behind the design. Notice how the straight lines of the square case are softened up by the long, feminine curved legs of the case. The simplicity of the design, as well as the sophisticated details makes the watch perfect for virtually any occasion.”

V113 Ladies size: w 25 - h 22,4 mm titan glass

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Design

Lau Liengård Ruge

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V112 “This is a very simple yet sophisticated design. The slim lines defining the body of the watch are complemented in the dial by the slim and pointy hands and hour markings. A newborn evergreen.”

V112 Gents size: Ø 40 mm titan glass

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Design

Lau Liengård Ruge

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V112

V112 Ladies size: Ø 33 mm titan glass

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Designer

obaku harmony

Christian Mikkelsen (1960)

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the obaku designers a watch tells a story One of the driving forces behind the Obaku Harmony collection of watches is Christian Mikkelsen. Known as one of the best in this business, he trained as an industrial designer and has subsequently worked with designing watches for a wide range of different manufacturers. He currently lives in Hong Kong, where he enjoys the full range of contrasts, the sense of dynamism and the boundless energy that the metropolis provides. Working closely with fellow-designer Lau Liengård Ruge, Christian Mikkelsen has created an entire universe of unique watches that are now available bearing the Obaku Harmony name. ”Form and function both have a colossal influence on the final result, and it’s impossible to separate the two,” he says, adding ”watches are now one of the products that is generally accepted as having considerable value as a signal to the surrounding world. In fact, designing a watch verges on creating a personal machine for the user.” Christian Mikkelsen’s work builds on inspiration from a wide selection of different sources. He gets ideas from observing the delicate details found in good

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craftsmanship as well as the broad swathes to be found in classic designs. His extensive experience means that he’s in a position to have faith in his own ideas. ”I really trust my own intuition about a product, and always keep the person for whom the watch is designed in mind,” he says. Christian Mikkelsen grew up in a small, historic town in Denmark – a town in which craftsmanship was a way of life for many of the inhabitants. His family tree features many craftsmen, and in his younger days he was familiar with boat builders, joiners and others who had a tradition of taking pride in their work. This was where he learned the basic tenets of true craftsmanship, and he has always been fascinated by detail and a keen admirer of true quality. For Christian Mikkelsen a watch is an extra-special item – he himself owns 20 different watches of different designs. And a watch also tells a story – ”Your watch says something about who you are as a person. It also depicts the passing of time, and announces that you are engaged in the process of living your life.”

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V111 “This watch has a broad appeal. The stringent design combined with exceptional attention to details, such as the hours marked by 12 small dots on the bezel, gives this watch a very sporty appearance.”

V111 Ladies size: Ø 30 mm

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Design

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Christian Mikkelsen

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V111 Ladies size: Ă˜ 30 mm

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Christian Mikkelsen

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Design

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V111 Gents size: Ă˜ 38 mm titan glass

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Christian Mikkelsen

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Design

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V110 ”This watch is quite simply ultra-feminine – an item of jewellery with a focus on long, delicate lines. The hours are marked discreetly, and the details on the crown highlight the sense of femininity and sophistication.”

V110 Ladies size: Ø 24,5 mm

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V109 ”The aim here was to dispense with as much of the case as at all possible, and to focus on the strap instead. As a result, the strap is the most notable feature of this watch, helping communicate an awareness of the urban lifestyle for the modern woman.”

V109 Ladies size: Ø 39 mm titan glass

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Design

Lau Liengård Ruge

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V108 ”This watch almost makes you feel like you are on a trip into the future. The design radiates a sense of youth and courage, emphasised by the stringent use of lines and right angles. The shaping of the case, combined with the three-dimensional appearance of the face, make this watch an exceptional experience.”

V108 Gents size: w 37 mm - h 30 mm

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Design

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Christian Mikkelsen

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V107 “A design and shape with curved yet simple lines that provide associations with Asia. A timeless design that is a clear expression of the genuine Obaku philosophy.�

V107 Ladies size: w 24 mm - h 24 mm

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Lau Liengård Ruge

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Design

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V106 “The simple, rounded shape of this watch, combined with the two ”light legs”, seem almost to make it levitate. The many different colour combinations in the straps match the delicate stones on the face to provide this design with an elegant, feminine touch.”

V106 Ladies size: Ø 26 mm

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Designer

obaku harmony

Lau Lieng책rd Ruge (1976)

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the obaku designers

good design is worth keeping Lau Liengård Ruge is well versed in the art of immersing himself in the design process, in considering an idea for a long time, being willing to think on a grand scale and focusing on finally achieving the perfect result. Working with Christian Mikkelsen, Lau Ruge has now created the Obaku Harmony collection of watches, motivated by the desire to combine form and function in a sublime design idiom. ”For me, the important thing is to produce a design that stands the test of time. I’m no fan of quick-fire, flavour-of-the month solutions. I want to really get to grips with a design, and focus my energy on bringing it to fruition,” he says, at the same time admitting that he is an incorrigible perfectionist. Lau Liengård Ruge trained as an industrial designer at the Aarhus School of Architecture in Denmark, and has been interested in the creative aspects of life ever since childhood. He has played music for many years, and has always been engaged with designing and drawing. ”Both my parents are creative people, and it’s only natural that their interests in music and art rubbed off on me,” he explains.

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”Designing is the focal point of my interests, and I always try to add a graphical dimension to my work,” he says. Lau Liengård Ruge is full of praise for the classic Danish designers, who are renowned for the simplicity and functionality of their work. Nevertheless, he also fully appreciates the fantastic inspiration to be found in high-tech contemporary design idioms. ”Basically, it’s also a question of maintaining a sense of pride in what I do, and remembering what the product will ultimately be used for,” he points out. ”Being involved in creating the Obaku Harmony range has been a process that’s been both exciting and interesting. As a designer, I was given free rein to put my personal fingerprint on the different types of watches in this collection. I have been very aware of working with the effects created by the different materials, according to the kind of treatment they are given or the way they are juxtaposed,” he says. “The objective with my designs is to create products that people consider worth keeping.”

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Design

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Christian Mikkelsen

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V105 “A watch that seems to alter appearance depending on the colour chosen. It is a classic design, yet also features elements of minimalism, as seen in the squaredoff case. This watch clearly expresses harmony, in a manner that will never appear boring.�

V105 Ladies size: 25,9 mm - h 29 mm

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V103G ”A watch that communicates innovation and energy. The most distinctive feature is the way the case cuts down into the strap, with its symmetrical, circular design. The minute marks on the outer bevel provide a sensation of being almost three-dimensional.”

V103 Gents size: Ø 38 mm titan glass

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Design

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Lau Liengård Ruge

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V102 ”A very geometrical watch that is almost architectural in its design idiom, with focus on the horizontal lines. Even though this watch has an overtly simple appearance, small, delicate details are also in focus. This is a watch in a stringent, modernist style, with a strap and case that combine in a dynamic transition from narrow to wide.”

V102 Gents size: w 34 mm - h 36 mm

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obaku harmony

Lau Lieng책rd Ruge

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Design

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V102 Ladies size: w 26,9 - h 29 mm

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V101 ”The design of this watch makes it timeless – a bracelet watch communicates strength and solidity. There is also an emphasis on a light, harmonious and elegant appearance. The double layers of the watch face provide a visually exciting extra feature in the design.”

V101 Gents size: Ø 38 mm titan glass

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Design

Christian Mikkelsen

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V101 Ladies size: Ă˜ 30 mm

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obaku harmony

Christian Mikkelsen

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Design

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V100 ”An elegant watch for those who appreciate a purity of style. The design of this watch makes the strap and the case seem to almost blend into each other. This watch provides an active, sporty look in which all unnecessary detail has been pared away, and where the sharp, narrow lines have a recurrent place in the overall design idiom.”

V100 Gents size: Ø 38 mm titan glass

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Design

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Christian Mikkelsen

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V100 Ladies size: Ă˜ 32 mm titan glass

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obaku harmony

s p ec i f i c at i o ns hand polished stainless steel cases, buckles and bands All cases, buckles and bands are made in the best solid stainless steel material for watch manufacturing. The fine 316L steel is made in Japan – and all cases are finally, carefully hand polished by the best craftsmanship standards.

coatings All watches in gold or black are coated with a titanium coating which is the newest and most advanced technique for long lasting coatings. The gold coating is a mixture of titanium and gold which are merged with the stainless steel base material in a fusion process in a vacuum chamber.

straps titan glass Selected models of the Obaku Harmony watch collection are assembled with the newest invention in glass technology - Titan Glass. Probably the strongest glass ever used for watches. Titan Glass is at least 10 times more crack resistant than any other typical watch glass such as mineral glass and sapphire crystal glass. Titan Glass is registered and used exclusively in Obaku Harmony watches.

All straps are made in genuine leather – and several versions are assembled in multiple layers which are giving the straps a rich structure and identity

kevlar straps Selected models are using the most durable materials including Kevlar, which is a light fibre generally said to be 5 times stronger than steel on an equal weight basis

movements mineral glass Watches which are not marked with Titan Glass are assembled with the highest quality of mineral glass with a high degree of scratch resistance.

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All watches are assembled with original high quality movements made in Japan with the highest precision.

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ecological movements

the “photos” are not photos

Selected models are equipped with special environmental friendly movements, which are using the new SPRON Battery a new mercury/lead-free silver Oxide Battery. By applying a high precision anode, using a surface process technology and new material for the cathode, silver and lead be removed totally from the battery. (The movement can also use ordinary batteries as well)

The “photos” of all the watches in this catalogue were made long before the actual watches were produced. The “photos” are actually not photos, but computerized visualizations which are the original drawings made by the designers Lau Liengård Ruge and Christian Mikkelsen. There might be small variations between the computerized drawings and the actual watches.

water resistance All watches are at least 3ATM water resistant. Each watch is vacuum tested up to 3 ATM pressure. The watches are not suitable for diving or swimming.

gift boxes The gift box for the Obaku Harmony watches is a small sculpture in itself. It supports the entire concept of the Obaku philosophy of harmony and minimalistic design. The box is designed by Lau Liengård Ruge.

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obaku harmony

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www.obaku.com

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Obaku Catalogue 2008