10 Of The Best Chronograph Watches Available On The Market
In horological terms, a chronograph is a specific type of watch that can both be used as a stop watch combined with a display watch. The chronograph complication is now a popular horological function on modern day watches as they provide a secondary function to the original time display. Over the last twenty years, the popularity for chronograph watches has been undeniable and many watch manufactures have looked to develop and expand on the chronograph complication to provide the best watches for their customers. Here are just ten of the best chronograph watches available on the market today:
Rolex Cosmograph Daytona
Where else would we start this list at? The Rolex Daytona is the crown jewels in the Rolex collection and its history expands through a number of years. The popularity of the Rolex Daytona is much down to the classic look, history and functionality of this watch. The chronograph feature is controlled by two pushers that screw down, much like the crown, and control the start, stop and reset functions of the chronograph.
The Rolex Daytona is available in 904L Steel, 18K Yellow Gold, 18K White Gold, 18K Everose Gold and with the Roselor Steel and Gold combination. The 2016 release of the Rolex Daytona in 904L Steel and black Cerachrom bezel ref 116500LN, fast won the hearts of many collectors and enthusiasts alike and now has a five year waiting list that only serves to promote the Daytona as the most loved Rolex watch of all time.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Schumacher Laptimer
With looks that come straight out of a Sci-fi movie, the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept Schumacher Laptimer has to be amongst the finest chronograph of its time. The Laptimer Chronograph features a double central second hands, flyback complication and a 30-minutes counter, along with the standard time display.
The watch is cased in 44mm of forged carbon and teamed with sapphire crystal on both the front and caseback, 18K pink gold inlay pushers and crown and a black carbon Laptimer pushpiece with ‘MS’ inscribed. The open-worked dial only adds character and mystery to this truly outstanding creation by Audemars Piguet.
Richard Mille RM 011
The Richard Mille RM 011 have been regarded as the new up comer in the luxury watch market, and they have made a serious impression on not only collectors and enthusiasts, but also other Swiss manufactures. The signature RM 011 automatic flyback chronograph is easily one of the most advanced chronographs on the market and an example of the precision and skill of Richard Mille.
Zenith El Primero Chronomaster 1969
Although Zenith aren’t at the pinnacle of the luxury watch market, the movement developed by Zenith, El Primero, is amongst the horological Hall Of Fame as the most reliable and precise movement manufactured to date. Many of the top Swiss manufacturers, including Rolex, have developed and manufactured similar designs to that of the El Primero because of the truly inspiring precision given by the movement.
The Zenith El Primero Chronomaster 1969 is features a flyback chronograph with a central seconds hand, a 12-hour counter dial at 6 o’clock and a 30-minute counter dial at 3 o’clock. The watch has a beautiful classic style look to it and with the El Primero movement, is as precise as they come.
Patek Philippe 5905-P
They say that you don’t own a Patek Philippe, you similarly look after a Patek Philippe for your children and grandchildren. In this instance, the 5905-P sports an automatic flyback chronograph function with a 60-minute counter dial located at 6 o’clock. Despite not having the largest time display on the chronograph function, the Patek Philippe 5905-P also features a time display and annual calendar display to really ensure the wearer gets the most out of the watch. What’s so special about this watch is that it the chronograph seconds hand can also double up as a running seconds hand for the time display – without causing a negative impact on the precision of the watch.
The Patek Philippe 5905-P is cased in a 42mm platinum case and finished with all the brilliant intricacies of Patek Philippe. The Calibre CH 28-520 QA 24H powered the multiple functions of the 5905-P and has been modelled on the legendary patent movement of 1996. Despite the multi-functional movement, the 5905-P remains a watch that is both a masterpiece and a practical watch to wear in day-to-day life.
IWC Portuguese Chronograph Classic
IWC has a variety of different watches in their stable, from time minute repeaters to the most ingenious toubillons you’ve seen in watches. The IWC Portuguese Chronograph is simply a stunning wristwatch with two vertical sub-dials and classic design, giving the look and feel of a extremely elegant watch synonymous with the watches they produce. The watch features a time display, date display and chronograph function, whilst retaining the quality of precision associated with IWC. The chronograph is an automatic flyback chronograph with a display of seconds, minutes and hours totalling to 12-hours. Two minute and hour counters are displayed at the 12 and 6 o’clock positions on the dial.
The Portuguese Chronograph classic is available in 18CT rose gold or stainless steel, with a choice of ardoise or white dial. The 89361 calibre powers the multi-functional movement and has a power reserve of 68-hours.
Hublot Spirit Of The Big Bang
Hublot have a certain knack for bringing out watches that are different yet simply excellent in design and style. The Spirit Of The Big Bang is no different and offers the wearer a classic design with a great chronograph movement. The watch features a beautiful open-worked dial face and teamed with a modern date display at the 4 o’clock position, to really show off the impressive functionality of this watch. The case of the Spirit Of The Big Bang, which is a tonneau shaped case, or barrel shaped, is employed to great effect and is a breath of fresh air to the Hublot and chronograph collection.
The Spirit Of The Big Bang comes in four different variations – 18K King Gold, Titanium Ceramic, 18K King Gold Ceramic and Titanium Diamonds. The watch holds the powerful HUB4700 to power the chronograph, date and time displays. The movement has a 50-hour power reserve and water resistant to 100m. The watch is finished on either a black rubber or brown alligator straps.
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph 44mm
The AP 44mm Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph is truly a stunning watch. The combination of 18CT rose gold case, glare proofed sapphire crystal and case back, black ceramic bezel and unique crown and push pieces really make this a watch that has stood out of the watch crowd for a long time. The watch is a self-winding chronograph watch with a date display and small seconds at 12 o’clock, and powered by the Calibre 3126 movement. The watch is considered to be a shimmering jewel within a multitude of jewels in a crown that is Audemars Piguet. Looks aside, the movement is incredibly powerful and powers an exceptional chronograph function that rivals that of the best.
Omega Speedster Professional Moonwatch
Omega watches are renowned for creating watches that are reliable and functional in everyday use. The Omega Speedster Professional Moonwatch features a powerful chronograph function and is a very stylish and elegant watch. The watch is also renowned for being the world’s most famous chronograph watch – it was this watch that Buzz Aldrin was wearing when he stepped on the moon in 1969 (hence the moonwatch name).
With its black dial, chronograph and tachymeter scale, this 42mm stainless steel watch was designed to stand out. Classic finishing intricacies of this watch, including the hesalite crystal and SuperLumiNova coated hands ensure the watch stands out of the crowd.
Patek Philippe 5980
The Patek Philippe 5980 ‘Nautilus’ is one of the most recognisable watch designs the world over. The 5980 is encased in either Stainless Steel, 18K rose gold or a combination of 18k rose gold and stainless steel and features a signature Patek Philippe movement that powers the first chronograph complication for the Nautilus collection. One thing that is so striking about this watch, asides from the stunning beauty of this watch, is the 60-minute and 12-hour monocounter for the chronograph function at the 6 o’clock position.
The 5980 is widely considered to be the best sports chronograph watch, or even the best sports watch on the market to date. The incredible looks, functionality and reliability make this an incredible watch for fans, collectors and enthusiasts alike.