Chronograph — not to be confused with chronometer — is simply a term adopted by the wristwatch world for a stopwatch.
The two most successful chronographs of all time, Omega’s Speedmaster and Rolex’s Daytona, are legendary pieces with their racy tachymetre bezels created to measure the acceleration of sports cars on the track.
TAG Heuer makes one of the most iconic designs in its Monaco chronograph in its bold square case while F. P. Journe manufactures some of the most exquisite in the form of its Chronograph Rattrapante and sportier Linesport Centigraph.
These watches are all expensive, and often hard to buy at authorised dealers because demand is dramatically outstripping supply.
But there are plenty of alternatives that deliver the same functionality in often strikingly contemporary designs.
Versace Gents Gold and White Sport Tech Chrono
For something more accessible, and bang on the current trend for gold watches, how about the Versace Gents Gold and White Sport Tech Chrono Watch?
For a more palatable £1,350, you get a yellow gold plated piece housing a Swiss quartz movement.
The watch is all about fashion, and proudly shows the iconic Medusa Head motif and Versace logo at 12 o clock.
Cyrus KLEPCYS DICE
Cyrus has planned its year around the introduction of the Klepcys DICE this month, in particular its sponsorship of the Haas Formula 1 racing team was designed to highlights its ability to make precise and stylish timekeepers.
The watch houses a brand new in house movement or, as Cyrus describes it, two independent chronograph movements and two display axes. One corresponds to the chronograph seconds and the other to the 30-minute counter of the double chronograph.
The chronographs are activated by two column wheels, which in turn activate the different levers and couplings that move the seconds and 30-minute chronograph display.
On the design front, Cyrus is renowned for bold, three-dimensional watches, and the Klepcys DICE is no exception with its cushion shaped case, skeletonised dial and right accent colours.
There are two limited editions of 50 pieces each in titanium or black DLC coated titanium.
They are on sale for £33,250.
Victorinox Gents Black Maverick Chronograph
A great chronograph is a watch you can wear without worrying that it could let you down at a time when split seconds count.
This is where Victorinox, with its background in survival equipment like its Swiss Army Knives, comes in.
Its Maverick Chronograph collection is affordable, at £549 to £639, robust, sporty, stylish and accurate thanks to its Ronda 5030.D quartz movement.
It is water resistant to 100 metres, which might explain why it has a diver’s unidirectional bezel, but also racy with an internal tachymetre scale.
Alexander Shorokhoff Unisex Silver and Black Avantgarde Chrono RED Watch
Chronographs can often be busy and hard to read with tiny subdials and multiple concentric measurement tracks.
Germany’s Alexander Shorokhoff has gone a different direction with its Avantgarde Chrono, which has two subdials rather than the more common three, and has made a deliberate design choice to go big and bold with as few numerals as possible.
There are a number of colour combinations in the Avantgarde Chrono collection, but this steel piece with black, red and yellow accents is particularly elegant.
The 43.5mm steel watch houses a an interesting mechanical German-made movement, which can be seen through an exhibition case back.
Prices for the Avantgarde Chrono range from £1,549 to £2,239.
Bomberg Gents Silver and Black BOLT-68 Racing Watch
Bomberg is never shy, and its contribution to the chronograph canon is a statement 45mm piece with its crown and chronograph pushers at the top of the case — much like you would see on a traditional stopwatch at the track.
A bright red trigger is used to start and stop the chronograph hand, perfect for a racer in his driving gloves.
The dial is equally bold with oversized hours and minutes hands in front of three subdials.
The textured dial is framed with a black and silver tachymetre bezel and the watch can be taken off its strap and worn like an old fashioned stop watch with a chain around the neck.
Prices range from £870 to £990.
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