This week we will have a look at three Jaeger-LeCoultre Blue Memovox Speedbeat!
Three watches from the same time period with a lot of common points but still very different…
The time period: 1970 – 1972
In a very short span of two years Jaeger-LeCoultre released seven Memovox, E 870 – E 877. During the same time period, no one really knows how many different LeCoultre Memovox references that was released…
Style: Funky 70’s
In the end of 1960’s and beginning of 1970’s the whole watch industry was making a lot of big, bulky and colourful watches. The results of the flower power movement that started in the mid 1960’s…?
Speedbeat: High Frequency of 28 800 vph / 4 Hz
I am guessing one of the reasons there were so many new Memovox references released during this period was the new Memovox Calibre 916, introduced by Jaeger-LeCoulre in 1969. Compared to the old Calibre 825, 18 000 vph / 2.5 Hz, the new Calibre 916 was referred to as a High Frequency movement, a.k.a. Speedbeat due to the higher rate of 28 800 vph / 4 Hz. The following three watches all have the Calibre 916 inside.
1) The Classic – E 875 Memovox “Speedbeat“
In the middle of all these Funky 70’s Memovox, Jaeger-LeCoultre made one more classic looking Memovox. Classic in shape but still colourful, in this example blue!
The E 875 is often referred to as the ”Speedbeat” because of the movement and that some, not all E 875 had Speedbeat engraved on the back.
That is a bit misleading as A) the Speedbeat comes from the Calibre 916, shared by many other Memovox. B) as mentioned, not all E 875 had the Speedbeat engraving, but also other references had the Speedbeat engraving on the back.
E 875 here illustrated on bracelet in the 1972 Jaeger-LeCoultre Memovox catalogue:
On the wrist, somewhat classic looking, but maybe the term Sport Chic would fit better here? Remember this is the era when many iconic luxury steel bracelet sports watches were born…
2) The Outsider – LeCoultre 3072 Memovox
When discussing Jaeger-LeCoultre watches it’s easy to forget that there were a lot of LeCoultre watches which never were sold in the European market. As far as I can recall the 3072 only came with the LeCoultre signature.
The designer of this watch really went full mode Funky 70’s! I think every base shape is included in this watch and the dial colour is shaded from blue center to outer black, both the alarm disk and the outer dial. I guess that if launched today it would be called “double fume” dial…
No Speedbeat indications what so ever on this watch, the HPG on the dial stands for High Precision Guarantee.
3072 here illustrated on bracelet in a 1970 LeCoultre Memovox ad:
On the wrist, super Funky 70’s! Very comfortable, very cool! One notable thing is that it’s very light even if it looks quite solid. The case material is thinner and the links in the bracelet looks thicker than they are…
1) The End of Funky70’s – E 877 Memovox “Snowdrop“
The last Funky 70’s Memovox from Jaeger-LeCoultre during this period was the E 877 Memovox a.k.a. the Snowdrop. Big and round with a multi level bezel similar to the type of bezel which often can be seen on divers watches from this time. The E 877 had a waterproof of 50 meters / 5 ATM, but not really a divers watch.
The brushed case in combination of the polished, three dimensional bezel gives an image of how UFO’s often were imagined back then…
E 877 here illustrated on bracelet in the 1972 Jaeger-LeCoultre Memovox catalogue:
On the wrist, like most of these Funky 70’s Memovox – very comfortable! Cool? Absolutely! By some reason, this is one of the watches I get most compliments for by “mugglers”, non-WIS people…
On the back, as earlier mentioned – the Speedbeat engraving was not on all E 875 and not exclusive for the E 875. Here both the E 875 and the E 877 have the Speedbeat on the back.
If you haven’t noticed, I love to complete a watch! That includes all possible accessories such as documents, catalogues, boxes, straps, buckles and in this case bracelet.
Three watches from the same time period with a lot of common points but still very different – 3 x Blue, 3 x Memovox, 3 x 28 800: E 875, E 877 and 3072.
A BIG thank you goes out to @jaegerlecoultre_aficionado proposing topics for these stories and for posting them on Instagram!
PS. I will return with more detailed reports on each watch.