Monochrome Watches
An online magazine dedicated to fine watches

The Ming 27.02 Gradient Guilloché

Ming’s minimalist, ultra-thin dress watch gets a makeover with a gradient guilloché dial.

| By Rebecca Doulton | 3 min read |
MING 27.02 Gradient guilloche

The strapline for Ming watches on the internet, “designed in Kuala Lumpur, made in Switzerland”, gives you an inkling that Ming is not your traditional watch brand. Ming Thein, a renowned commercial photographer from Malaysia, was one of the six founding fathers of the brand that arrived on the scene in 2017 with the 17.01. Despite the lacklustre names of its collections, Ming’s emphasis on top quality design combined with outsourced movements and attractive prices has paid off. Ming swept up the Horological Revelation prize at the GPGH 2019 with the 17.06 and had two finalists in the GPHG 2020 with the 18.01 Dive watch and the 27.01 Ultra Thin. The brand’s thinnest and dressiest model – the 27.01 – reappears today with a gradient guilloché dial as the 27.02.

MING 27.02 Gradient guilloche


As mentioned, the names of Ming’s collections are not very descriptive. Be that as it may, the 27.01 of 2020 was an evolution of the inaugural 17.01 model. The difference was that in the three years that separate them, Ming Thein mastered 3D CAD and designed the 27.01 from scratch in 3D. Like the inaugural 17.01, the overall mood of the watch was minimalist, but the case thickness was whittled down from 9.3mm to an impressively svelte 6.9mm. The latest evolution, the 27.02, respects the ultra-thin dimensions of the case (38mm x 6.9mm) but gives the dial a fancier gradient guilloché dial.

Ad – Scroll to continue with article

Gradient Guilloché

Similar in construction to the dial of the 27.01, with its metal chapter ring with cut-out markers, the 27.02 replaces the external chapter ring with a blue stamped Clous de Paris guilloché pattern and uses a sapphire gradient dial in the centre. Although the two separate elements seem to fuse into one another, technically we are looking at two different layers with different surface finishes.

The gradient sapphire crystal fades from an intense black in its centre to a less saturated tone revealing ever-increasing areas of the blue guilloché decoration below. The hour markers that appear to float above the dial are laser-etched into the sapphire crystal and filled with white material. In keeping with the minimalist dress watch aesthetics, the hour and minute hands are skeletonised, and there is not a trace of lume.

Ultra-thin Case

The overarching brief of all-round reduction for the Ming 27.01 has been carried through to the case of the Ming 27.02. Measuring 38mm with a height of 6.9mm (including crystals), excess material has been removed from the periphery of the case, with hollows extending through the lugs. Surface finishings and layering are used to create different reflections and textures on the case. Crafted in stainless steel, the watch alternates polished, brushed and matte blasted surfaces and features the hallmark ‘flying blade’ or pagoda-style lugs.

MING 27.02 Gradient guilloche

Ming Calibre 7001.M1

During 2020 Ming was able to secure some additional ETA Peseux 7001 movements in the specification required. Like the 27.01, the 27.02 relies on a heavily reworked Peseux 7001 with a 42-hour power reserve. Retaining only the gear train and escapement, the black chrome bridges and plates are remade by Manufacture Schwarz-Etienne. Ming’s mandate of creating a solid baseplate with maximum openings on the upper bridges to display the moving components ensures a view of as much of the movement as possible through the sapphire crystal caseback.

MING 27.02 Gradient guilloche

Straps, Availability and Price

Once again, Ming has partnered with Jean Rousseau Paris for the strap, and the watch comes with a blue-grey calfskin strap fitted with the latest flying-blade steel buckle. The curved bars feature a quick release system allowing you to change the strap of the watch with ease. The Ming 27.02 comes in a leather travel pouch handmade by Studio Koji Sato. Given the limitations on movement supply, the Ming 27.02 will be limited to 200 watches. It is available to order from 15 January 2021 exclusively from The price is CHF 4,950 and deliveries are expected to begin in November 2021.

More information at Ming Watch.

7 responses

  1. Great looking ,smart maker, I hate the “only for a few’ marketing scheme. It is everywhere in watch marketing and is wrong minded !

  2. Very nice. The word ‘versatile’ is overused in describing many watches, but the 50m w/r and balance between dressy and a sort of low-key sporty look makes it worthy of that compliment.

  3. Interesting designs. Distinctive that’s for sure. But I do not see the value in these. Priced much too high in the end of the day. And they are starting to kinda get lazy as far as designs of what they are releasing. The problem with such distinctive design is that they almost need to kept one upping themselves and at some point it’s going to be incredibly hard to do so. I believe this is the first sign of that. I also despite not really wanting to add one to my collection find their order very funny. They keep pissing people off whom want to acquire them. But perhaps that’s clever marketing right?

  4. Ray, they’re a VERY SMALL company, and they care about *quality*. These movements are basically completely hand made, one at a time, by the time you look at the work done. How many such can be made each year? And these movements are going into the last 27.01’s; there’s 150 of those. 350 hand-made movements in a year is very significant effort.

    There are companies that abuse the notion of limited runs; this is not such a case, IMO.

    Of note, tho: the window to have a *chance* at one of these is extremely narrow. They will last MAYBE 5 minutes. I heard that the first batch, sold to prior Ming owners only…thw 27.02s sold in literally just a couple minutes. The poster wasn’t a lot more clear. And while the batch here is larger, this is the open sale.

    So if you want either one of these…50 27.01s and 75 27.02s go up in a few hours…assume that if you’re not online, connected to the web site, and reloading *regularly* when the bell rings, you have pretty much no chance. Even then it’s a crap shoot based on connection issues. I was lucky enough to get almost the last 17.06 copper…but the monolith blacks were gone. That was…7, 8 minutes in? And 150 of each.

    I’m not bothering with this batch because it goes on sale at a terrible time (6 AM) for me. I MIGHT take a stab at the last batch, altho the desperation factor there will make the demand even MORE insane.

  5. I’d wager that pissing off people who wish to purchase your product is precisely the wrong strategy. They recently sent out an email to their mailing list noting that customers have been hostile to their representative. No excuse for that, but I wonder if they realize what makes customers angry in the first place: offering to sell something with scant inventory to meet demand beyond the first few seconds of frantically refreshing the browser. The supply and demand dynamic is well understood: either make more, or raise the price to bring it into equilibrium. Absent that, they’re guaranteed to disappoint far more customers than they please. How is that a sustainable business model? They’re no Rolex.

  6. Very attractive dial/ hands combination. I am not a fan of leather straps. About £400 cheaper than a 36mm Rolex oyster perpetual, automatic watch on steel bracelet, not such a tough choice.

  7. @Craig Lewis

    These movements aren’t completely hand-made, that’s very rare in the industry, regardless of price.

Leave a Reply