Monochrome Watches
An online magazine dedicated to fine watches


A feature where the seconds hand stops when the crown is pulled, allowing for a precise setting of the time or synchronizing of multiple watches.

A flat spiral spring within the balance wheel of mechanical movements that allows it to oscillate at a consistent frequency, controlling the accuracy of the watch. Also known as a balance spring.

The highest certification of quality with a State guarantee, awarded by an independent bureau in Geneva. Watches must meet 12 criteria, including the highest levels of decorative finishing, precision and craftsmanship. Awarded watches have the Geneva coat of arms stamped on the movement. Eligible pieces must be produced in the canton of Geneva. Also known as the Poinçon de Geneve or Geneva Seal.

A small striking piece within a movement that produces a specific note by hitting a gong.

A watch that must be wound manually, usually by rotating the crown to tighten the mainspring.

The physical stalks on mechanical watches that indicate the time and other information such as the power reserve or chronograph seconds.

The pinnacle of fine watchmaking, involving complicated, highly finished movements, cases and dials.

A one-way valve used on the cases of deep sea diving watches. The small molecules of helium can enter a watch, pressurize at extreme depths and then pop the crystal off as the diver ascends. The helium escape valve allows this helium to safely depressurize without letting the larger molecules of water into the case.

The number of oscillations of the balance wheel in one second (indicates a movement’s frequency).

The four extensions of a wristwatch case (two on each side) used to attach a strap or bracelet. Also known as lugs.

The study and science of time measurement, and art of producing timing instruments (clocks and watches).