MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm

The MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm sets aside convention and charms onlookers with its single-hand display, relaxed temperament and silver-white dial. With its unique mien and affordable pricing, non-conformists have never had it so good.

This detailed review of the MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm includes live images, specification details and pricing.

MeisterSinger No.01 - 40mm

I once spent the morning with a watch designer. Positioned between the design studios and the staff restaurant was an intricately shaped path, winding its way across a pristine lawn. While walking together, my host proceeded to stride across the grassed area, choosing to ignore the path. I looked bemused, prompting her to remark, ‘I don’t like it when I am expected to walk in a certain direction. I am a free spirit’.

I am reminded of this philosophy every time I see a MeisterSinger watch. These timepieces do not follow convention. Indeed, they eschew the ubiquitous hour and minute hands, using a lone hand to articulate the time. No other watch brand offers a single-hand watch. The destination may be the same but the journey is very different.

Recently, I selected a press sample from MeisterSinger’s extensive collection. Something akin to a horological magpie, I was drawn to the shiny face of a MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm with its silver-white dial and bold red suede strap. Its nonconformist appearance resonated with my own eccentric personality and a hands-on relationship soon ensued.

MeisterSinger has offered its No.1 watch with a 43mm case for some time. However, the brand from Münster recently unveiled the model in a new 40mm housing. This latest watch will appeal to those men with slender wrists as well as ladies who seek an eye-catching alternative to ‘normal’ feminine watches.

The dial

The MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm is offered in three dial variants: ‘ivory’, ‘sunburst blue’ and ‘silver-white’. The latter model, fitted with a red suede strap, immediately ensnared my heart. In the UK, wearing red trousers provokes ridicule, but there is no consensus on the merits of red watch straps. Personally, I am a huge fan of this vibrant hue and its atypical appearance resonates with my own character. However, for those would-be buyers who are a tad conservative, the German firm offers a varied range of strap colours, including the ubiquitous black and brown.

MeisterSinger No.01 - 40mm

Returning to the dial colour, the silver-white option has a slight metallic sheen and evinces a pure, unsullied character. One needle-like hand circumscribes the dial, taking its time to kiss each of the 144 strokes framing the display. The scale, showing both hours and minutes, displays the time in 5-minute integers. This unique means of displaying the time proves intuitive to read and should not perturb the would-be wearer.

The case

The size of the MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm will appeal to most men and many women. Indeed, this particular version with its silver-white dial and red strap could be described as unisex and I suspect would wonderfully accessorise a feminine ensemble.

MeisterSinger No.01 - 40mm

I have worn this watch for several days and can attest it is incredibly comfortable. The restrained size, modest weight, tapered lugs and cosseting strap all collaborate to deliver a wrist-friendly embrace.

MeisterSinger has blended polished and satin-brushed surfaces. The bezel, crown and caseback gleam resplendently, while the caseband and lugs assume a quieter, softer temperament.

MeisterSinger No.01 - 40mm

Impressively, despite its accessible price, MeisterSinger has incorporated some details which are normally the preserve of costlier watches. A brilliantly polished bevelled line sits atop the caseband and lugs. To juxtapose this slither of shiny metal with satin brushed surfaces, while ensuring both finishes remain discrete, proves time consuming and, by default, costly.

The movement

The MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm is equipped with a hand-wound Sellita SW210, visible via an exhibition caseback. The movement is Swiss, features 19 jewels and has a power reserve of 42 hours. The balance has a frequency of 28,800 VpH (4Hz).

MeisterSinger No.01 - 40mm

This particular version of the Sellita SW210 is exquisitely finished. Blued screws abound. For example, they feature on the transmission and ratchet wheels as well the bridges. The mainplate is embellished with perlage and the bridges are adorned with Côtes de Genève motif. The train wheel bridge is engraved with the brand’s nomenclature.

An aspect I particularly like about this movement is that the balance wheel is exposed in its entirety, granting views of the hairspring pulsing with life.

Closing remarks

I have enjoyed wearing the MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm. Reading the dial proves instinctive. Furthermore, the absence of clutter mitigates confusion. A MeisterSinger watch provides a new perspective on time, although it may not appeal to those individuals who live life at a frenetic pace, placing huge importance on every second. The time is proclaimed in 5-minute integers and invites wearers to relax and take it easy.

The case is beautifully detailed, tastefully pairing polished and satin-brushed surfaces. Its size and design grant a high degree of wearer comfort. An exhibition caseback affords views of the hand-wound movement.

This version of the Sellita SW210 is beautifully presented. Numerous blued screws feature, Geneva stripes adorn the bridges and perlage embellishes the mainplate. This level of finishing is impressive, especially considering the modest asking price of the watch, £1390 (RRP as at 12.10.2018).

I have a friend who deliberately checks his emails only once per day and switches off his mobile phone after a certain time in the afternoon. He values his time and does not squander it on unimportant things. The relaxed tempo of this single-hand watch sidesteps needless rushing and obsessing over seconds. It delivers the essentials of time in a considered way and implores the wearer to view time in a wider context. Time is to be slowly savoured, not devoured.

Having worn the MeisterSinger for a few days, I can see it is born of a different philosophy, an alternative way of thinking. Like the aforementioned designer, this German brand has chosen its own direction and, I for one, appreciate its way of thinking.

Further reading

Technical specifications

  • Model: MeisterSinger No.01 – 40mm
  • Reference: DM301
  • Case: Stainless steel; diameter 40mm; sapphire crystal to front and caseback; water resistant to 5 ATM (50 metres).
  • Functions: Combined hours & minutes
  • Movement: Sellita SW210; hand-wound movement; frequency 28,800 vph (4Hz); 19 jewels; power reserve = 42 hours
  • Strap: Red suede strap paired with a steel pin buckle
  • Price: £1,390 (RRP as at 12.10.2018)

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