Monochrome Watches
An online magazine dedicated to fine watches

MING 19.02 Worldtimer With Schwarz Etienne Automatic Micro-Rotor Movement

The higher-end MING watch is back with new movement and traveller's complication.

| By Tom Mulraney | 4 min read |

This is the new MING 19.02 Worldtimer, the fourth model to be launched by the Malaysian-based brand in less than two years. Following in the footsteps of the 19.01 – which was a GPHG finalist last year – this new evolution introduces a world time complication and an automatic movement with micro-rotor. It’s officially launching today and is available to order immediately, with special pricing for those who get in early. Read on for all the details, including specs and official pricing.

At first glance, the new MING 19.02 Worldtimer looks somewhat similar to the earlier 19.01, inasmuch as it shares the same index markings, gradient sapphire dial, case body and hands. The overall look and feel, however, are more classic, more refined. This is attributable in part to the decision to put a rose gold finishing on the movement, glimpses of which can be seen through the fully transparent dial edges. We’ll talk more about the movement in a minute but for now, let’s stay focused on the aesthetics.

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Firstly, the case is exactly the same as the 19.01. So, 39mm diameter, crafted from grade 5 titanium and no spacer rings to ensure rigidity. To be fair, there’s not actually that much titanium. In fact, MING describes its case as “a thin titanium band holding the two deep-box sapphire crystals together.” It is a smidge thicker than the 19.01 however at 11.2mm, due to the inclusion of the word time complication. The additional 0.3mm needed has been accommodated into the front box sapphire crystal, so it shouldn’t really be that noticeable.

Likewise, the 19.02 retains the same distinctive gradient sapphire dial from the 19.01 but it is now a more formal black. According to MING, a unique lacquer process is used to achieve this deep reflective lustre, which is almost enamel-like in appearance. Hours and minutes are displayed centrally by skeletonized hands treated with Super-LumiNova X1, which point to an outer chapter ring that is laser-etched into the sapphire crystal. Again, there are no running seconds. For further legibility in low light conditions, there is a luminous ring inside the bezel that projects a soft glow onto the dial. As a final touch, a central crosshair has been added to make it easier to read the time.

What really caught my eye though, is the world time display. The layout in and of itself is not particularly novel yet for me it just really works on this dial. Static city names (well, airport codes) are printed under the sapphire to create a seamless display, while a masked section on the gradient sapphire dial allows for a rotating titanium 24-hour disc. Those with keen eyes will note the city selection is slightly unusual, which is down to founder Ming Thein’s eclectic tastes. The appearance of ‘KUL’ (Kuala Lumpur) on the ring pays homage to MING’s birthplace.

If the glimpses of the movement from the dial side are nice, the view from the back is positively glorious. It probably also looks somewhat familiar to regular readers of MONOCHROME. That’s because it is Schwarz-Etienne’s in-house micro-rotor automatic movement, the ASE220.1, in a unique configuration for MING. The bidirectional winding micro-rotor is made of sintered tungsten and the single barrel offers a healthy 70 hours of power reserve. There is no reserve indicator as such, but the signature MING skeletonized barrel cover allows you to visually assess the state of wind.

Aesthetically the movement is quite attractive, with the matte-blasted 5N rose gold coating standing out nicely against the titanium. Partially skeletonized bridges add a sense of depth, which is further accentuated by the hand-polished anglage. As with the 19.01, the movement is adjusted in five positions and tested for an extended period prior to delivery.

The new 19.02 Worldtimer comes with two calf leather straps by Jean Rosseau, Paris, and signed steel buckles. A quick release mechanism allows for the easy changing of the straps without the need for tools.

All watches are made in Switzerland and come with a 1-year warranty against defects. Pricing for early orders will be CHF 9,900 up until the 31 March 2019, before reverting to CHF 10,900. Deliveries are expected to commence at the end of 2019.

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7 responses

  1. Agree with Ian. One year is bizarre for nearly 10k and a two year old company, no matter how respected Ming is.

  2. I don’t think it’s the airport code used to name the cities. While it’s correct for KUL, it’s not true for CHI, NYC at least

  3. A very nice watch indeed with a few issues:

    – The ideal mechanism would let you set the 24hr disc once and for all on 3rd crown position, and then local time via jumping hour hand on second position. Here it’s the opposite (confirmed with Ming), which means you need to adjust everything when travelling. A “true GMT” movement as a base would have avoided that. But here we get a micro rotor and still nice movement.

    – The warranty is way too short, should be at least 3 or even 5 years as is becoming industry standard, esp at this price point. Other worry is part availability. Movement is source from reputable maker, but given custom finish, how long can you service the watch??

    – Pre order conditions are bad. I get that a young brand needs cash flow, but losing 50% deposit on a 10k watch if you cancel your order is a big no no. Also pricing depending on payments mean is not serious, should just be factored in price given the “luxury” price point.

    Again, so close from being an instant buy, but you cannot forget there’s a lot of competition at this price point.

  4. My first thought was “that rotor is too heavy to be reliable”
    Actually no, my fist thought was “AAAAAAARRRRRGGHHHHHH! ROOOOOOOSE GOOOOOLDDDD!”
    There are going to be lots of people in ten or fifteen years time whose expensive watches will look incredibly dated. Rose (not rose; PINK!) gold looks cheap and effeminate and will be the signature look of 2017-2022.
    I like this watch design, without the crappy gold.
    But I do not like the micro-rotor, nor do I like the business practices cited above. And a 1-year warranty is not good enough.

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