Monochrome Watches
An online magazine dedicated to fine watches
Buying Guide

Six Mighty Technical Watches Not Afraid to Fully Expose Themselves

From inverted movement constructions and 7-day power reserves to groundbreaking escapements and sapphire transparency.

| By Robin Nooy | 7 min read |

It’s usually frowned upon to expose yourself in an indecent way, but when it comes to watches, it’s a different story. We genuinely get excited about seeing the intricate mechanics of a proper Haute Horlogerie timepiece dial-side, not just from the backside of a watch. Personally, I always love it when there’s more to see than ‘just’ a set of hands over a dial. Exposing the inner workings of a watch can be done in several ways and for several reasons. The watches selected for this episode of our weekly Buying Guide all have one thing in common: they do it to expose their technical details as best as they can! From inverted mechanical movements to fully transparent cases, all six watches are perfectly happy with showing their most intimate bits!

Moritz Grossmann Backpage Green

We’re starting things off with the new Moritz Grossmann Backpage Green, a watch that literally flips its movement on its head. The Backpage is on the more expressive end of Grossmann’s Haute Horlogerie spectrum and gets a new green ‘dial’ for this 15th-anniversary edition. To celebrate the 15th year of present-day Moritz Grossmann, the manufacture presents it in rose gold or platinum, with most of its running gear, the keyless works and the escapement presented dial-side. Details like the hand-engraved decorations on the balance cock, and the polishing or brushing on bridges and wheels are perfectly in view. Both are limited to just 25 pieces, retailing for EUR 45,600 in rose gold or EUR 52.000 in platinum.

Ad – Scroll to continue with article

For more information, please visit

Quick Facts – 41mm x 11.35mm – rose gold or platinum case, polished – sapphire crystal front & back – winder with pusher & stop-seconds mechanism – partial dial in green with applied hour indices and printed numerals and markings – heat-annealed hands in violet-brown hue – calibre 107.0, manually wound – in-house – inverted construction – 18,000vph – 42h power reserve – Haute Horlogerie finishing applied by hand – brown or black alligator leather strap with pin buckle – limited to 25 pieces each – EUR 45,600 (red gold) – EUR 52,000 (platinum)

Ferdinand Berthoud Chronomètre FB 3SPC

Ferdinand Berthoud has been a genuine revelation in recent years and brings a unique style and watchmaking ethos to the table. The brand isn’t shy about pushing boundaries aesthetically, but technically it has some tricks up its sleeve as well. One of them is the Chronomètre FB 3SPC, which comes with an extraordinary cylindrical hairspring! The white gold case exposes the cylindrical beating heart of the watch through a sapphire crystal porthole in the side, but the lack of a traditional dial also frees up most of the fabulous movement. It was originally introduced last year, but now also comes in this white gold and black execution. It’s not limited, although annual production capacity is. It costs CHF 143,000.

For more information, please visit

Quick Facts – 42.30mm x 9.13mm – 18k white gold case – sapphire crystal front & back, with porthole in caseband – 30m water-resistant – inner minute ring & small seconds in black – openworked hands in gold – power reserve indication – calibre FB-SPC, in-house – manually wound – COSC-certified chronometer – 230 components – 21,600vph – 72h power reserve – cylindrical hairspring – stop-seconds mechanism – hours, minutes, small seconds, power reserve – alligator leather strap with gold pin buckle – not limited – CHF 143,000

Armin Strom One Week First Edition

Changing course to something a touch more sporty, the Armin Strom One Week First Edition is a completely different type of watch. Although it basically lacks a traditional dial, you can still quite easily tell time with the large hands and the outer flange with a minute track and hour indices. But the beauty is the in-house ‘engine’ with its double-barrel system enabling a 7-day power reserve (hence, One Week). Winding this watch is a treat as you can see both barrels turning when doing so, as well as the subtle power reserve indicator connected by a conical gear. The movement is finished in light blue, specific to the First Edition. It’s worn on an integrated stainless steel bracelet and is limited to 25 pieces, each retailing for EUR 37,000.

For more information, please visit

Quick Facts – 41mm x 10.60mm – stainless steel case, brushed & polished – sapphire crystal front & back – 100m water-resistant – black minute ring & small seconds dial – faceted hands with Super-LumiNova – calibre ARM21, in-house – manual winding – 194 components – 25,200vph – 7-day power reserve (168 hours) – blue frosted mainplate – exposed barrels suspended under finger bridges – integrated stainless steel bracelet with folding clasp – limited edition of 25 pieces – EUR 37,000

Greubel Forsey Tourbillon Cardan

There’s no beating around the bush; Greubel Forsey is at the top of the game when it comes to technical watchmaking, as well as Haute Horlogerie finishing. The latest Tourbillon Cardan comes in a polished and straight-grained titanium case with an incredible movement inside. The multi-level gold dial and steel hands almost play second fiddle to the patented 30° inclined Cardan tourbillon. This minimizes positional variations thanks to its 30° angle, the high speeds of the tourbillon, as well as innovative mounting rings. Fitted to a hand-sewn strap from non-animal material, it’s limited to just 11 pieces per year and a 5-year production cycle and costs a whopping CHF 470,000. All its technical details can be found here.

Greubel Forsey Tourbillon Cardan

For more information, please visit

Quick Facts – 45.5mm x 18.15mm – titanium case, grained & polished – box-shaped sapphire crystal front & back – 30m water-resistant – multi-level gold dial – steel hands & indices with Super-LumiNova – hand-wound movement with patented Cardan Tourbillon – 389 parts – 21,600vph – 80h chronometric power reserve – inclined multi-axis tourbillon escapement – hand-sewn strap from non-animal material with titanium folding clasp – limited to 11 pieces per year and a 5-year production run – CHF 470,000

ArtyA Curvy Purity Sapphire

A tourbillon of a different kind but a tourbillon nonetheless, the Artya Curvy Purity Sapphire literally exposes it all. The tonneau-shaped full sapphire case leaves nothing to the imagination and allows for a 360° view of the movement inside. Conceived, developed and manufactured in-house by Artya in collaboration with Télòs SA, it packs a flying tourbillon escapement and indicates time on an offset dial. The double barrels ensure a running time of 72 hours once fully wound through the crown positioned at noon. Artya will make only 13 pieces of this fully transparent watch, all equipped with a recycled leather strap. The price for this provocative piece of Haute Horlogerie is EUR 141,000.

For more information, please visit

Quick Facts – 38.5mm x 43mm – tonneau-shaped sapphire crystal case – crown at noon – 30m water-resistant – symmetrical skeletonized movement – offset hours & minutes indication – in-house conceived, developed and manufactured movement in collaboration with Télòs SA – manual winding – 28,800vph – 72h power reserve with double barrels – 17mm flying tourbillon escapement – hours, minutes, seconds on flying tourbillon – black recycled leather strap with pin buckle – limited to 13 pieces – EUR 141,000

Girard-Perregaux Neo Constant Escapement

When Girard-Perregaux first presented its buckling blade constant force escapement, the entire watchmaking world took notice. It was one of the most interesting technical developments in modern watchmaking and presents one of the most sophisticated solutions to counteract a waning driving force from the barrels to the movement. Now, a decade later, GP presents the Neo Constant Escapement with an updated design and further technological advancements. These improvements allow for an even greater efficiency of the escapement, with, among other things, a guaranteed 7-day power reserve. The newly designed titanium case comes on a rubber strap with a titanium folding clasp. The price is set at EUR 105,000.

Girard-Perregaux Neo Constant Escapement

For more information, please visit

Quick Facts – 45mm x 14.80mm – grade 5 titanium case – box-shaped sapphire crystal – sapphire crystal caseback – 30m water-resistant – minute track with applied hour indices – skeletonized hour & minute hands with Super-LumiNova – central second hand with blue tip – linear power reserve indication – calibre GP09200-1153, in-house – manual winding – COSC-certified chronometer – 21,600vph – 7-day power reserve – constant escapement – black rubber strap with titanium triple-folding buckle – EUR 105,000

2 responses

Leave a Reply