Sports beauty contest — TOP-5 chronographs

The content of the article:

All sorts of ratings, the Internet taught us, are a good thing, users really like them, they definitely attract attention. So that you, dear readers, remember what treasures are stored on the shelf of your favorite dealer, from time to time we allow ourselves to gently remind you of this. Today let's look at the chronographs and choose the top five

Any competition for the title of the best can only be considered truly held when the rules were announced, everyone was admitted, and the judges were professionals and impartial in their assessments. Everything is in order with the admission, all the invited “athletes” are available. Let's not discuss the professionalism of the judge, but believe me, for our today's goal, I will do.

I promise impartiality, and as for the rules, we evaluate the appearance and internal content, as in a beauty contest. Here are just questions to those competing about the meaning of life, or “what would I do if I became president”, we will not ask, we will limit ourselves to considering the mechanism. If there are no objections - to the start, attention, march.

1 place

The first to reach the finish line is a representative of the undisputed leaders in the segment, a member of the team Tag Heuer Carrera, TAG Heuer Carrera 160 Years Montreal Chronograph.

This model appeared in the TAG Heuer catalog in 2020 following the beautiful Carrera 160 Years Silver Limited Edition, a faithful reissue of the early Carrera Ref. 2447, 1963 models.

Of course, Carrera is a very important collection for the brand, but no less important are Monaco, Autavia, Silverstone, Monza, Camaro and Montreal, in honor of the latter, Carrera 160 Years Montreal, our champion, was released.
The 2020 Montreal is not a re-release, nor is it an attempt to replicate any popular item from yesteryear. This watch skillfully brings together the recognizable elements of several vintage Heuer models at once, and they are presented in a very modern package, with a certain degree of necessary modernization.

Compared to the original Heuer Montreal 110503W, released in 1972, you will surely immediately see what the differences are, while the similarities are not so obvious - nevertheless, the 2020 model itself seems to be a rather interesting “variation on a theme”, and so much so that it can rightly be considered a "champion".

Neat, reminiscent of the early Carrera 39 mm, the regular case is a smaller version of the current cases in this line. Nothing superfluous, clear lines, a smooth polished bezel framing a strongly domed sapphire crystal, chronograph pushers and a crown are attractively simple, in general, the watch amazingly retains the design elements loved by Jack Heuer, which made his watches world-favorite and recognizable.

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But if the Carrera 160 Years Silver Limited Edition was the epitome of understated style inherent in the 1960s, then the Carrera 160 Years Montreal is a conduit for the fashion trends of the 1970s. Look closely at the dial: the matte white base serves as a beautiful backdrop to the blue hour markers and blue chronograph counters, as in the 1972 Montreal watch, there is yellow, in the form of a Super-LumiNova color coating on the hour and minute hands, in sectors at 30- minute counter. Yellow also marks the luminous dots next to the applied faceted hour markers.

The red second hand completes the image - without it, you see, the effect would be less expressive. The dial is almost non-existent, except for an early Heuer logo and a reference to Carrera at 12 o'clock, and a very discreet swiss at six o'clock. Nothing about the “automatic”, but the caliber hidden inside the steel case is worth talking about for a long time!

Like the Carrera 160 Years Silver, the limited edition Carrera 160 Years Montreal features the in-house Heuer 02 caliber, a modern and functional (4 Hz, 80-hour power reserve) movement with an integrated column-wheel chronograph and vertical mesh architecture. A miracle of engineering, but once Jean-Claude Biver ordered to stop the production of the in-house Caliber CH80, however, later, realizing the fallacy of this decision, the production was resumed, and the movement was renamed Heuer 02. But that’s a completely different story…

2 place

Since at the beginning of this rating we started talking about treasures, then let's move on to watches with precious metal. No need to frown, I myself think that sporty-minded chronographs have become more to the face. But Graham Chronofighter Vintage Emergency 2CVAS.B35A in fact, a watch in a steel case, inside of which - and this is clearly visible from the side of the dial - a golden "bar" is hidden, and with all the inherent markings.

The weight, however, is small, only 1 gram, you won’t get much for this, 50 dollars, but it’s nice to realize that on your hand is not just a good Swiss chronograph of the original look, but a copy executed with humor, offering to “break the glass in an emergency” of shortage cash and pay with pure gold. Brilliantly!

The G1747 caliber that powers this watch, like many other Graham models, is based on the ETA Valjoux 7750, and there is nothing wrong with that, as the 7750 movement is known for its reliability and very competitive price-performance ratio.

3 place

Watches Norqain Adventure Sport Chrono N1500SIC/A151/15RC.18S eminently reflect everything for which, in principle, we love this brand.

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Pick up any Norqain chronograph and marvel at the amazing quality that no other Swiss brand with a longer history offers its products in this price range.

This particular model appeared in the Adventure Sport collection in 2020, in addition to the blue version, a black one was also released, both models received a case reduced to 41 mm in diameter, the dial layout also changed compared to the older 44 mm brothers, here it is 6- 9-12 rather than the 3-6-9 used on the Chrono 44mm models. The Norqain Adventure Sport Chrono case is crafted from the popular 316L stainless steel, a unidirectional counter-clockwise knurled bezel surrounds the signature Norqain patterned dial, and day and date indications are visible through an aperture at 3 o'clock.

Both dial design options, both blue and black, have red accents, which, of course, adds a sporty look to the watch - the red tip of the central second hand of the chronograph looks especially chic with white fill, if it were my will, I would not paint it otherwise in red, left only this.

Applied indexes and faceted hour and minute hands are filled with C1 Super-LumiNova, as is the dot at 12 o'clock on the rotating bezel. Based on the Swiss automatic movement Sellita SW500a, the Norqain NN17 caliber and its inertial rotor can be viewed through a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal caseback. The movement operates at a frequency of 28 semi-oscillations per hour (800 Hz) and provides a 4-hour power reserve, the case is water-resistant to a depth of 48 meters.

On the left side of the case, there is a polished plate that has become Norqain's signature style, a tablet on which you can write a message to posterity if you wish - but not very long.
It is probably hard to understand from the description alone and from the photos why the Norqain Adventure Sport Chrono 41mm is a very good chronograph, so I strongly urge you not to be shy about trying on, this watch magically takes on meaning in the hands and, if you are more inclined to meaningful shopping, than impulsive, do not waste time in vain.

4 place

If you agree with the message that choosing the best watch is essentially a beauty contest, then be sure to support the candidacy of the watch Cuervo y Sobrinos Historiador Landeron 3146.1W.

Like the other models in this collection, the Historiador 3146.1W with its steel case, white dial and blue accents perfectly reproduces the historic spirit of the 1948 Cuervo y Sobrinos Historiador Landeron chronograph. Of course, the watch was modernized - the case size was increased to 40 mm, equipped with updated and completely restored movements based on the Landeron 248 of the 1960s.

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White dial, black hour markers. The central second hand of the chronograph, as well as the main hands of the hours and minutes, are bright blue, matching the numbers on the tachymeter scale. The well-balanced combination of black and blue on a light background definitely adds a classic balance to this watch, which is always beautiful. The CYS 4008 caliber, restored by the Landeron 248, is hand-wound, beats at 18 semi-oscillations per hour and offers a 000-hour power reserve. Appearance and internal content are on top, at least one of the prizes is guaranteed!

5 place

The chronographs of the Corum Admiral's Cup collection are full of sporty spirit, as if by choice, the outlines of the case are so expressive. It would be wrong not to include the Admiral 45 AC-One Chronograph in this note.

Corum Admiral AC-One 45 Chronograph looks great, sits well on the hand and overall leaves a very pleasant feeling. If there's anything to complain about, it's the movement: at this price, the brand could offer something a little more interesting based on the ubiquitous ETA caliber CO116, but this one still provides 40 hours of power reserve and works properly.

Who does not remember, Corum Admiral's Cup watches have existed since 1960, they were originally square, and remained so until the early 1980s, when Corum made the first major change in the design of the Admiral's Cup collection, creating a recognizable dodecagonal case shape from afar. It's funny that the watch named after the Admiral's Cup regatta still exists, while the competition ended in 2003, but that's not the point. The Admiral 45 AC-One Chronograph, in particular our favorite A132/03876, has a titanium case with a black rubber strap, with black sub-dials, other elements of the watch “decor” are painted black, except for the white dial, decorated with branded guilloche.

Previous versions had a large "60" at 12 o'clock, in the new watch, the mark was replaced by an overlay key, the Corum logo, the size of which is proportional to the rest of the hour markers around the dial. The design of the chronograph hand, which also uses the key-logo as a counterbalance, was left unchanged. Surprisingly, this element does not appear to be repeating.

The result of the research, I must say, turned out to be very pleasant. In addition to the opportunity to once again review and evaluate the available watches with a chronograph, I was pleased with the variety of offers in general, which is what I wish you.

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