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Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph
TOP
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Chronograph
R 596,742
Seller
LUXE WARE (HK) LIMITED
74
HK
Chopard LIMITED 1000 PC Mille Miglia 2017 Race Edition...
TOP
Chopard LIMITED 1000 PC Mille Miglia 2017 Race Edition...
R 75,317
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Worldtimer
 
HK
Omega Speedmaster Professional Pre-Moon Chrono 145.012 Vintage...
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Professional Pre-Moon Chrono 145.012 Vintage...
R 139,968
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Uhrenkapital
334
DE
Hublot Big Bang 44 mm
Hublot Big Bang 44 mm
R 135,000
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Private Seller
ZA
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M
TOP
Omega Seamaster Diver 300 M
R 40,000
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Private Seller
ZA
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronograph
TOP
Ulysse Nardin Marine Chronograph
R 140,872
Seller
CANTELI JOYEROS SL
9
ES
Rolex Daytona White gold  Oro Bianco - Blue Dial - quadrante Blue
TOP
Rolex Daytona White gold Oro Bianco - Blue Dial - quadrante Blue
R 478,416
Seller
Plus Watch - Luxury Watches
2923
IT
Breguet Transatlantique Type XX Chronograph Black Dial...
TOP
Breguet Transatlantique Type XX Chronograph Black Dial...
R 73,537
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
167
NL
Girard Perregaux Vintage Chronograph
TOP
Girard Perregaux Vintage Chronograph
R 187,090
Seller
Metals In Time
6
US
Parmigiani Fleurier KALPA KALPAGRAPHE CHRONOGRAPH DATE 18K...
TOP
Parmigiani Fleurier KALPA KALPAGRAPHE CHRONOGRAPH DATE 18K...
R 184,943
Seller
A.S. INVESTMENTS SP. Z O.O.
125
PL
TAG Heuer Monaco Steve McQueen Like Nos
TOP
TAG Heuer Monaco Steve McQueen Like Nos
R 230,357
Seller
MASTROLORENZI S.A.S DI MATTIA MASTROLORENZI & CO.
61
IT
Bell & Ross Vintage 126XL  Limited Edition
TOP
Bell & Ross Vintage 126XL Limited Edition
R 132,455
Seller
Fernando Monge SA
126
ES
Hublot Big Bang 44 mm Box & Documens 2009
TOP
Hublot Big Bang 44 mm Box & Documens 2009
R 113,850
Free shipping
Seller
WatchesNorte
86
ES
Montblanc Sport Soulmakers for 100 years Limited Edition Mens...
Montblanc Sport Soulmakers for 100 years Limited Edition Mens...
R 34,900
Seller
Luxurytime South Africa
ZA
Sinn 103 St Sa RB Classic Watch Sondermodell
TOP
Sinn 103 St Sa RB Classic Watch Sondermodell
R 43,413
Seller
Classic Watch
20
DE
Zenith Defy El Primero 21
TOP
Zenith Defy El Primero 21
R 159,124
Seller
WatchesofMayfair.com
441
UK
IWC Pilot Chronograph "Le Petit Prince" Edition - IW 377717
TOP
IWC Pilot Chronograph "Le Petit Prince" Edition - IW 377717
R 64,677
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
167
NL
Breitling Chronomat Chronograph Yellow Gold 39MM Box&Papers/19...
TOP
Breitling Chronomat Chronograph Yellow Gold 39MM Box&Papers/19...
R 85,055
Free shipping
Seller
M.J.WATCHES
148
BE
Breitling CHRONO-MATIC 24H CHRONOGRAPHE CHRONOMETER LIMITED...
TOP
Breitling CHRONO-MATIC 24H CHRONOGRAPHE CHRONOMETER LIMITED...
R 168,143
Seller
A.S. INVESTMENTS SP. Z O.O.
125
PL
Longines 13zn
TOP
Longines 13zn
R 194,917
Seller
Safe watches
10
IT
Omega Speedmaster Broad Arrow
TOP
Omega Speedmaster Broad Arrow
R 62,019
Seller
Casowatches.com
14
IT
Hublot Big Bang Chronograph Rose Gold Box&Documens 2012
TOP
Hublot Big Bang Chronograph Rose Gold Box&Documens 2012
R 263,139
Free shipping
Seller
WatchesNorte
86
ES
Montblanc Meisterstuck Sport Men's Watch
Montblanc Meisterstuck Sport Men's Watch
R 30,900
Seller
Luxurytime South Africa
ZA
Hublot Super B Flyback Chrono
Hublot Super B Flyback Chrono
R 76,000
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Topwatch SA Pty Ltd
ZA
IWC Da Vinci Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
TOP
IWC Da Vinci Perpetual Calendar Chronograph
R 445,475
Seller
WatchesofMayfair.com
441
UK
Ebel 1911 XXL Panda 913726026567 Chronograph Men's Watch
TOP
Ebel 1911 XXL Panda 913726026567 Chronograph Men's Watch
R 34,554
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
167
NL
Zenith Pilot Chronograph El Primero Doublematic
TOP
Zenith Pilot Chronograph El Primero Doublematic
R 143,530
Seller
The Swiss House
6
ES
IWC SCHAFFHAUSEN DA VINCI CHRONOGRAPH DATE - BOX & PAPERS
TOP
IWC SCHAFFHAUSEN DA VINCI CHRONOGRAPH DATE - BOX & PAPERS
R 177,124
Seller
A.S. INVESTMENTS SP. Z O.O.
125
PL
Rolex Daytona Ref. 116520 in Steel
Auction
Rolex Daytona Ref. 116520 in Steel
R 151,490
Estimated price
Seller
Fortuna
 
Chopard Mille Miglia Monaco Historique 2010 box & papers complete
TOP
Chopard Mille Miglia Monaco Historique 2010 box & papers complete
R 77,581
Seller
Vintage & Prestige
22
UK
Omega Speedmaster Automatic
Omega Speedmaster Automatic
R 32,782
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
249
DE
Breitling Blackbird Blackbird Chronograph Men's Watch
Breitling Blackbird Blackbird Chronograph Men's Watch
R 38,900
Seller
Luxurytime South Africa
ZA
IWC Pilot Chronograph
IWC Pilot Chronograph
R 129,000
Seller
Topwatch SA Pty Ltd
ZA
Rolex 6265 Daytona OT swiss Sigma Dial
Rolex 6265 Daytona OT swiss Sigma Dial
R 1,183,680
Free shipping
Seller
Watches Mallorca
8
ES
B.R.M V12 Red Chronograph Automatic V1244GTB
TOP
B.R.M V12 Red Chronograph Automatic V1244GTB
R 41,641
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
167
NL
Rolex Daytona 116506
Rolex Daytona 116506
R 886,357
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
221
UK
Breitling Superocean Chronograph II
Breitling Superocean Chronograph II
R 51,387
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Helmut Seidl GmbH
11
DE
Rolex Daytona “Paul Newman” Ref. 6239 in Steel
Auction
Rolex Daytona “Paul Newman” Ref. 6239 in Steel
R 2,272,348
Estimated price
Seller
Fortuna
 
Patek Philippe Grand Complication ref. 5270G Perpetual...
Patek Philippe Grand Complication ref. 5270G Perpetual...
R 1,896,015
Seller
Atelier Tempus
17
PL
Wempe Zeitmeister Vollkalender Chronograph
Wempe Zeitmeister Vollkalender Chronograph
R 38,983
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
249
DE
Breitling Montbrillant Datora Chronograph Men's Watch
Breitling Montbrillant Datora Chronograph Men's Watch
R 43,900
Seller
Luxurytime South Africa
ZA
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
R 239,000
Seller
Topwatch SA Pty Ltd
ZA
Rolex DAYTONA GOLD Mother pearl   NEW 99%
Rolex DAYTONA GOLD Mother pearl NEW 99%
R 335,258
Free shipping
Seller
Watches Mallorca
8
ES
Bulgari Bvlgari Diagono Professional Chronograph Gold & Steel...
TOP
Bulgari Bvlgari Diagono Professional Chronograph Gold & Steel...
R 48,729
Free shipping
Seller
Pawndeluxe
167
NL
Rolex Daytona Platinum 116506
Rolex Daytona Platinum 116506
R 826,602
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
221
UK
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph
Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Compressor Diving Chronograph
R 122,266
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
11
DE
Rolex “Zenith” Daytona Ref. 16518 in 18K Gold
Auction
Rolex “Zenith” Daytona Ref. 16518 in 18K Gold
R 151,490
Estimated price
Seller
Fortuna
 
A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Perp Cal Chrono PT NEW
A. Lange & Söhne Datograph Perp Cal Chrono PT NEW
R 1,437,639
Seller
Raffi Boyadjian Watches Inc.
15
US
Breitling Old Navitimer Platin
Breitling Old Navitimer Platin
R 199,347
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
249
DE
Breitling Chronomat Evolution Men's Watch
Breitling Chronomat Evolution Men's Watch
R 51,900
Seller
Luxurytime South Africa
ZA
Omega Speedmaster Chronographe Ref 1450055
Omega Speedmaster Chronographe Ref 1450055
R 70,911
Seller
Horlogerie Desbiolles
 
CH
Rolex Daytona
Rolex Daytona
R 674,130
Seller
Daoud's Fine Jewelry
6
US
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph Michael Schumacher
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph Michael Schumacher
R 1,711,805
Seller
Ahead Of Time Sunny Isles LLC
7
US
Rolex Big Red Daytona 6263
Rolex Big Red Daytona 6263
R 1,592,455
Free shipping
Seller
Watches & Jewellery of Bond Street Ltd
221
UK
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Chronograph
R 441,222
Seller
Helmut Seidl GmbH
11
DE
Rolex “Four-Line” “Zenith” Daytona Ref. 16520 in Steel
Auction
Rolex “Four-Line” “Zenith” Daytona Ref. 16520 in Steel
R 272,682
Estimated price
Seller
Fortuna
 
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch 311.30.42.30.01.005
Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch 311.30.42.30.01.005
R 54,461
Seller
Harley's Time LLC
156
US
TAG Heuer Monaco Chrono
TAG Heuer Monaco Chrono
R 38,983
Free shipping
Seller
A. Grimmeissen Uhren An- und Verkauf
249
DE
Baume & Mercier Clifton Chronograph Day Date Mens Watch
Baume & Mercier Clifton Chronograph Day Date Mens Watch
R 24,900
Seller
Luxurytime South Africa
ZA
Roger Dubuis Hommage Chronograph Ref RDDBHO0569
Roger Dubuis Hommage Chronograph Ref RDDBHO0569
R 386,069
Seller
Horlogerie Desbiolles
 
CH
IWC Portuguese Grande Complication Pink SAVE
IWC Portuguese Grande Complication Pink SAVE
R 1,280,089
Seller
Raffi Boyadjian Watches Inc.
15
US
Rolex Daytona 16520 A-Serial Zenith Fullset
Rolex Daytona 16520 A-Serial Zenith Fullset
R 440,868
Seller
chronostars
12
AT
  • 30
  • 60
  • 120

Chronographs: On the Button

Chronographs differentiate themselves from conventional three-hand watches by their stopwatch function. This type of watch has a unique, functional design characterized by subdials and push-pieces, which many buyers find attractive.

Chronograph Facts

  • The word "chronograph" comes from the Greek words "chronos" (time) and "graph" (an instrument that writes or records)
  • 1816: Louis Moinet invents a stopwatch that displays 1/60th of a second
  • 1913: Longines introduces a wristwatch with a stopwatch function powered by one push-piece
  • 1934: Breitling introduces the two push-piece chronograph
  • 1969: The first chronographs with automatic movements premiere

Sporty Stopwatches

Watches with a chronograph function are first and foremost sport watches. They were designed for use in sporting events. During track and field, swimming, or car racing competitions, events need to be accurately timed to determine a winner. The most modern technology takes care of this at the professional level, but it's still useful for amateurs to have a chronograph on hand for timing. Furthermore, this kind of watch is appealing to many buyers who simply appreciate a more technically-oriented timepiece. The chronograph isn't just limited to use in athletics, though; you could also use it to time while cooking to know when your pasta is al dente and ready to eat.

Some watch manufacturers have made a name for themselves with their efforts in developing chronographs, such as Breitling or TAG Heuer. Breitling is responsible for the typical design of modern chronographs. In 1934, the company introduced a watch with a chronograph function and push-pieces above and below the crown. The layout was successful and quickly spread to other manufacturers.

You begin timing by pressing the push-piece above the crown. When you push it a second time, it stops. If necessary, you can push it a third time to start it again. You can set the stopwatch back to zero by pressing the push-piece under the crown. Almost all modern mechanical chronographs function in this way.

The hands of a chronograph are organized according to a certain pattern. The largest difference between a chronograph and a conventional three-hand watch is that chronographs generally lack a central second hand. A chronograph's large second hand usually rests at 12 o'clock. When you push the top push-piece, it starts moving, timing seconds. Once you're done, you press the bottom push-piece to set the second hand back to zero. The second hand that is constantly in motion, known as the small seconds, is located on a subdial elsewhere on the chronograph.

Most chronographs feature the small seconds subdial at the nine o'clock position. Another subdial at 12 o'clock, the 30-minute counter, keeps track of timed intervals up to 30 minutes. Yet another subdial at six o'clock, the 12-hour counter, records even longer intervals up to 12 hours. The date display is located at three o'clock. Most watches with this dial layout and these timing functions are powered by chronograph calibers, such as the Valjoux 7750 from the world's largest ébauche manufacturer, ETA. Chronographs powered by other movements often have a layout of subdials at three, six, and nine o'clock. This V-shaped design is called Tricompax.

The Valjoux 7750 powers several chronographs from prominent manufacturers, such as the diving watch Longines Hydroconquest and the pilot's watch Sinn 103. Breitling, Hamilton, and Tissot also use this automatic movement in various models. It premiered in 1973, but wasn't an instant success. It first became popular after the Quartz Crisis was resolved. Since then, the Valjoux 7750 has been used in millions of watches. It's affordable to produce and runs reliably at 28,800 alternations per hour (A/h). Moreover, it's certified precise by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). Its power reserve lasts around 44 hours. There are many variants of the 7750, such as a manual version or ones with complications such as a moon phase indicator or a flyback chronograph. Due to its precision, the caliber is able to measure 1/8th of a second.

The El Primero from Zenith beats even faster. At 36,000 A/h, it can measure 1/10th of a second. Zenith introduced this famous high-frequency caliber in 1969. In the same year, Calibre 11 was released as the result of a collaboration between Heuer, Breitling, Büren, and Dubois-Dépraz. The movement powered the first Monaco from Heuer and ran at 19,800 A/h. This allowed the watch to measure 1/5th of a second. The Japanese company Seiko released their caliber 6139 around the same time. Together, these calibers made 1969 a milestone year in watchmaking history. Today, it's still debated which automatic chronograph caliber can be considered the first.

Buying Advice

Do you need a stopwatch every now and again? Look no further than a chronograph. Watches with this extra feature are available in almost every price range. These "time recorders" - a literal translation of chronograph - have technical appeal. They're predominantly men's watches, as the Valjoux 7750 caliber is quite large and not suitable for a classic women's watch.

Generally, chronographs powered by the reliable Valjoux 7750 caliber are less expensive than watches with rarer or in-house movements. These watches start around 1,000 euros. Even more affordable are chronographs powered by quartz movements. They're available in the three figure range from brands like Citizen. Some quartz chronographs are more expensive, however, such as the Breitling Superocean Chronograph M2000, which runs between 3,000 and 4,000 euros. This diving watch is waterproof to 2,000 m and its patented push-pieces can even be used underwater. Manufacturers strongly advise against using the timing function of a mechanical chronograph underwater.

For a little less than 3,500 euros, you can get one of the most famous chronographs in mint condition: the legendary Moonwatch, Omega's Speedmaster Professional. In July 1969, it became the first wristwatch on the Moon. The Apollo 13 astronauts also used this watch to perform a course correction of 14 seconds, helping them safely return their damaged spacecraft to Earth in April 1970.

No less famous is the Rolex Daytona, named for the race track in Daytona Beach, Florida. Race car drivers received these watches as victory trophies for the first time in the 1960s. A stainless steel Daytona in very good condition costs a little under 10,000 euros. A new gold model costs over 20,000 euros. A platinum version with diamonds can raise the price tag to over 100,000 euros.

Do you prefer a square watch? The square TAG Heuer Monaco made its film debut on the wrist of Steve McQueen in the 1971 film Le Mans. Since then, it's been competing with the Daytona for the reputation of the best racing watch. You can buy a new Monaco Calibre 11 for 3,500 - 4,000 euros. More TAG Heuer chronographs are available in their Carrera series.

The Omega Speedmaster, Rolex Daytona, and TAG Heuer Monaco were all designed as timepieces for the race track. If you prefer a pilot's chronograph, then the Breitling Navitimer is a good choice. It goes one step further: in addition to the stopwatch function, it has a slide rule which you can use to do basic calculations. You should be prepared to spend around 5,000 euros on a new stainless steel Navitimer. Another pilot's chronograph is the IWC Double Chronograph, which starts around 9,000 euros.

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