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11 Independent Watch Releases You Need to Know About

Beaubleu Vitruve GMT Blue

The world of independent watchmaking is an interesting place filled with exotic designs and out-there concepts. But that also means it’s full of some of the coolest and most spectacular watches you can buy. There are some independents who have become well known in the watch sphere like HYT as well as newcomers like Byrne, just starting to earn their place. Here’s a run-down of 10 independent watch releases you need to know about.

Byrne GyroDial ZERO

Byrne GyroDial Zero

To call Byrne a young brand is an understatement as they’ve only just passed the 6-month mark, launching at the tail end of 2022. But despite their youth, they’re carving out a place for themselves in the watch sphere already thanks to their unique GyroDial concept and display. Essentially, instead of having a static display, the four cardinal indicators can be changed between multiple settings such as Arabic numerals, Roman numerals and indexes – with the change taking place daily or at the will of the wearer. The newest version, the GyroDial ZERO takes this design and gives it a skeletonised makeover.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 41.7mm x 48.1mm diameter x 14.45mm thickness, titanium case, skeletonised dial|
  • Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)|
  • Movement: Swiss made calibre 5555, automatic, 42 jewels, 261 parts|
  • Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 60h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes|
  • Strap: Dark grey rubber (black rhodium) or smooth grey-green calfkin leather (rhodium silver)|
  • Price/availability: 18,500 CHF (approx. £16,650), more details at Byrne.

Artime Art01

Artime Art01

While Byrne have a few months under their belts, Artime is even younger, debuting their inaugural model, the Art01. The Art01 is a skeletonised piece of haute horology featuring a 42mm diameter case in titanium with an integrated sapphire middle. The movement on display from all angles has white gold bridges and a tourbillon suspended at 6 o’clock. It also has an 80-hour power reserve, which would be impressive in any watch let alone a tourbillon watch that’s also a brand debut. If Artime continues to produce work like this, they’ll be around for a long time yet. Although at an extremely limited edition of 20 pieces it will be rare to see one in the wild.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 42mm diameter x 11.4mm thickness, titanium case, skeletonised dial|
  • Water resistance: 30m (3 bar)|
  • Movement: Manual winding movement, 25 jewels, 261 parts|
  • Frequency: 21,600 vph (3 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 80h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, tourbillon|
  • Strap: Black grained calfskin leather|
  • Price/availability: CHF 195,000 (approx. £175,500), more details at Airtime.

BA111OD CHPTR_Δ

BA111OD CHPTR_Δ

The CHPTR_Δ (henceforth called Chapter Delta) from BA111OD uses a unique double rotating hour hand to enable the hour scale to be presented in a triangular format instead of the traditional circle. At the central hour hand rotates in the conventional manner, a smaller indicator orbits around the hand’s tip, it’s this indicator that serves to mark the hours, which, because of the nature of the non-standard display means the hour indicator appears to move faster or slower depending what the time is, although with the traditional minutes display you can see that the Chapter Delta retains its accuracy. The movement is based on the Soprod M.100 with a specialised BA111OD module, their first manufacture piece.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 44mm diameter, stainless steel case, satin matte steel dial with blue, yellow or red “dot”|
  • Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)|
  • Movement: Swiss made calibre with BA111OD module 09310, automatic|
  • Power reserve: 42h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, date|
  • Strap: Grey, blue or black rubber|
  • Price/availability: £2,080, more details at BA111OD.

Mauron Musy HPM1

Mauron Musy HPM1

The HPM1 is a limited edition of 18 pieces produced by Mauron Musy in collaboration with Frederic Jouvenot. It’s a 44mm titanium watch with a distinctive turbine aesthetic, using pivoting vanes to display the hours while a central hand keeps track of the minutes. It’s essentially a fusion of Mauron Musy’s technical aesthetic and a design inspired by Frederic Jouvenot’s signature radial displays and solar themed watches.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 44mm diameter, titanium case|
  • Movement: Mauron Musy calibre MM01, automatic|
  • Power Reserve: 55h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes|
  • Strap: Purple, turquoise, blue or white rubber|
  • Price/availability: Limited to 18 pieces, more details at Mauron Musy.

Hooke & Huygen

Hooke and Huygen

Hooke & Huygen are a new independent Swiss brand inspired by the work of two legendary clock makers and inventors from the 1600s, Hooke and Huygen. The central concept of their watches is a centrepiece orb that’s entirely swappable and can be replaced on a whim. It can be anything from an emerald or ruby to a semi-precious stone, metallic ball or even a tiny sculpture. The watch itself has a ring-shaped design to accommodate the central orb and has a 44mm diameter. Considering there can’t be a central hand stack, it uses an orbital design powered by a patented ring-shaped movement with a power reserve of almost a week.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 44mm diameter x 15mm thickness, stainless steel or gold case, black or white dial ring, 15mm centre hole for interchangeable gems|
  • Movement: Manual winding, 24 jewels, 450 parts|
  • Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes|
  • Strap: Leather/stainless steel bracelet|
  • Price/availability: From CHF 26,400 (approx. £23,750) (stainless steel) and from CHF 42,800 (approx £38,500) (white, rose or yellow gold), more details at Hooke & Huygens.

Carl Suchy & Söhne Belvedere

Carl Suchy & Söhne Belvedere Night

What the Belvedere brings to the Carl Suchy & Söhne range on an aesthetic level is interesting. It’s not a total move away from their signature style and elegance and instead it’s more of a lateral move towards sports luxe design. The case and lug designs are bulkier and it has a large, flat bezel that’s reminiscent of that iconic Genta style seen in watches like the Patek Philippe Nautilus. Despite its bulkier appearance it’s still a relatively slim timepiece with a diameter of 40.8mm in stainless steel. Although the dial with its rotating central disc and guilloché finish is the main focus of the piece.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 40.8mm diameter x 12.2mm thickness, stainless steel case|
  • Water resistance: 100m (10 bar)|
  • Movement: Modified Dubois Depraz calibre DD90000, automatic, COSC-certified, 21 jewels|
  • Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 42h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date|
  • Strap: Rubber|
  • Price/availability: €6,400 (approx. £5,660), limited to 100 pieces, more details at Carl Suchy & Sohne.

Bianchet Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork Carbon Titanium

Bianchet Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork Carbon Titanium

Bianchet have always leant in an urban, sporty direction similar to brands like Richard Mille and Hublot, and the Tourbillon B1.618 Openwork is no different. It’s a design they’ve been developing over several years in various materials such as this carbon and titanium edition. It has a 43mm x 50mm tonneau design, housing the skeletonised calibre B1.618 with its stunning 105-hour power reserve, tourbillon and nano-diamond friction reduction technology.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 43mm width x 50mm length x 13mm thickness, carbon fibre composite case with titanium powder, skeletonised dial|
  • Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)|
  • Movement: Bianchet calibre B 1.618, manual winding|
  • Frequency: 21,600 vph (3 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 105h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, chronograph|
  • Strap: Natural vulcanised rubber|
  • Price/availability: CHF 55,000 (approx. £49,500), more details at Bianchet.

Behrens 20G

Behrens 20G

The Behrens 20G is named after the fact that with its titanium case and skeletonised display, the body of the watch weighs just 20g. The unusual case has a trapezium shape with rounded corners and is curved to fit the wrist snuggly. There’s no central hand stack, instead using a bi-retrograde system for hours and minutes with an additional power reserve indicator in the top left. Perhaps the most impressive feature of the piece is that because the case is curved, the movement is too with the various components tilted away from each other – reminiscent of the Greubel Forsey Convexe.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 42mm width x 38mm length, titanium case, black dial|
  • Water resistance: 30m (3 bar)|
  • Movement: Behrens calibre BM02, manual winding|
  • Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 38h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, power reserve indicator|
  • Strap: Fluoroelastomer|
  • Price/availability: $7,600 (approx. £6,000), more details at Behrens.

HYT Conical Tourbillon

HYT Conical Tourbillon

When it comes to visually spectacular watches, the HYT Conical Tourbillon is certainly up there with its hyper futuristic, spaceship-like quality. The rotations of the titular conical tourbillon, mounted centrally on the watch, are incredibly dynamic and fluid to watch. Although supporting such a large and dramatic moving piece does mean the calibre 701 TC has just a 32-hour power reserve, but that’s an acceptable price to pay for the watch’s glorious insanity.

Price & Specs

  • Ref: H02759-A|
  • Case/dial: 48mm diameter x 25.15mm thickness, carbon & black DLC titanium case, black coated brass dial with green luminous numbers|
  • Water resistance: 50m (5 bar)|
  • Movement: HYT calibre 701-TC, manual winding, 61 jewels|
  • Frequency: 21,600 vph (3 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 40h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, tourbillon|
  • Strap: Black rubber|
  • Price/availability: CHF 335,000 (approx. £301,000), limited to 8 pieces, more details at HYT.

Beaubleu Vitruve GMT Blue

Beaubleu Vitruve GMT Blue

Beaubleu’s Vitruve concept was introduced just over a year ago and since then it has become a staple of their collections, with a fresh GMT introduced for 2023. Despite being called a GMT it’s actually a sub-type of GMT called a dual time function because it doesn’t use the tradition 24-hour scale with an additional hand. Instead, by using one of the hidden crowns, the 12-hour scale can be rotated to show the time in another part of the world – the same concept as used by rotating bezels with hour scales on them. Of course, the Vitruve GMT also features its signature circle hands presented here in white or pale blue.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 39mm diameter x 9.5mm thickness, stainless steel case, deep blue dial|
  • Water resistance: 30m (3 bar)|
  • Movement: Miyota calibre 9015 Slim, automatic, 24 jewels|
  • Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 42h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date, GMT dual time|
  • Strap: Leather or stainless steel bracelet|
  • Price/availability: $980 (approx. £785), more details at Beaubleu Paris.

Cyrus Klepcys DICE Lime Carbon

Cyrus Klepcys Dice Lime Carbon Stainless Steel

Cyrus are one of those brands that occasionally slips under the radar and then you look at what they’re doing an remember how insane it is. The Klepcys DICE is an intriguing timepiece due to its Double Independent Chronograph system. The system means it features two chronographs that can function simultaneously but totally separately to each other, unlike a split-seconds chrono. The new Lime Carbon edition introduces a carbon bezel and the collection’s first steel bracelet. Honestly, I don’t know why it wasn’t on bracelet sooner because it makes the watch look so much better.

Price & Specs

  • Case/dial: 42mm diameter x 16.5mm thickness, titanium and carbon fibre case, skeletonised dial|
  • Water resistance: 100m (10 bar)|
  • Movement: Cyrus calibre CYR718, automatic, 51 jewels, 443 parts|
  • Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)|
  • Power reserve: 55h|
  • Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, chronograph|
  • Strap: Stainless steel bracelet|
  • Price/availability: Price on request, limited to 50 pieces, more details at Cyrus.

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About the author

Michael Sonsino

As Digital Editor for Oracle Time, Michael needs an eye for detail, which makes it a good thing that his twin joys in life are miniatures and watches. He's a lifelong fan of fine timepieces, especially those of a more historic nature - if it has a twist of Art Deco, all the better. Recent purchase: Seiko Prospex 1959 Alpinist Modern Re-Interpretation. Grail watch: Vacheron Constantin Historiques American 1921.