Anyone walking by the Armin Strom booth at Baselworld 2016 could not help but notice a cool character plastered all over their trade show HQ – which was produced for them in honor of the new Armin Strom Edge watch collection. The artistic rendering is quite good, to be honest, and I later learned it was commissioned by Armin Strom to be drawn by a local Swiss artist named Herbert Kracke. Going by the artist name Tarkin, the Biel, Switzerland, local is also a friend of the Armin Strom brand and has a pretty incredible portfolio of graffiti-style science fiction art.
It was my advice to Armin Strom that they connect the Armin Strom Edge watch-inspired robot character with the Edge watch by offering a signed, limited edition print to go with each of the limited edition watches. They agreed, so anyone buying one of the 100-piece limited edition set of Armin Strom Edge watches will get the corresponding art. It seemed to make perfect sense to me.
You couldn’t really call the Armin Strom Edge watch totally new since it does more or less use an existing case and movement architecture. With that said, the style of the case has been refined, and the movement bridge design and finishing is totally new. It does offer a unique look, and it is based on the same in-house movement architecture that Armin Strom has been perfecting since about 2009.
Those with a penchant for movement design and finishing will appreciate the interesting contrast of artistic elements in the movement which, like the Edge character, are meant to be highly modern, but also edgy in style. It does feel like something out of a contemporary science fiction movie and combines futuristic lines with an interesting sort of industrial finishing. With that said, elements like rough brushed surfaces are complimented by traditional hand-polished beveled edge chamfering. Inspect the Armin Strom Edge watch closely, and you’ll find it difficult to miss the intense level of hand-finishing that went into this high-end Swiss watch.
Armin Strom rarely invests in something new like this not to expand on the collection a bit more in the future. While the initial set of watches is limited to 100 pieces in PVD-black coated steel, I have a feeling this isn’t the last Armin Strom Edge watch we will see.
The brand puts the Armin Strom Edge watch in their substantial 46.8mm-wide case which, as I noted above, has a new style of bezel. Though, in honesty, the case design is only subtly changed from most of their other watches. Look, for example, to my hands-on review of the Armin Strom Skeleton Pure watch here. The case is also 13.2mm thick and has a water resistance of 50 meters.
The movement is their continually lovely and avant-garde in-house caliber ARM16. Produced from 194 parts with double mainspring barrels, the ARM16 operates at 2.5Hz (18,000 bph) and has a long power reserve of eight days. The manually wound movement indicates the time a bit off-centered to the left, and further offers a subsidiary seconds dial that also includes a handy power reserve indicator. Armin Strom retained their highly visible style of lume-applied hour and minute hands, and it appears that the subdial for the seconds and the power reserve indicator is new.
Like many other Armin Strom watches, I very much appreciate the combination of artistic dial (and movement) skeletonization, along with a high level of time-reading legibility in the Armin Strom Edge. Attached to the Armin Strom Edge watch is yet again their excellent alligator strap, here offered in a sort of black and gray two-tone look that matches the modern theme of the design. Armin Strom also includes an additional rubber strap option with each Armin Strom Edge watch.
For people who love watches, modern things, and science fiction art – the Armin Strom Edge is a compelling choice, assuming you have the disposable income for a luxury such as this. While the Swiss watch industry has no shortage of conservative-looking traditional watches available to buy, many of these newer generation models that are inspired by modern pop-culture and continue to adhere to fine watch making traditions are a really attractive choice, in my opinion. Moreover, even at prices like this, a piece like the Armin Strom Edge is considerably less expensive than something more wildly avant-garde from a brand like MB&F, Urwerk, MCT, HYT, etc… Once again, the Armin Strom Edge is limited to 100 pieces, and this reference ST16-EB.90 watch has a price of $24,900 USD. arminstrom.com