The chronograph might be the most popular complication in the watch world, but as many chronograph watch owners would admit, it is also one that is not often used. Those we know who do use it, however, apparently use it for a multiplicity of purposes: Tracking the cooking time of eggs or instant noodles, the wait at a particularly popular hawker stall, or the duration of time spent at each station at the gym.
Adding further utility to the average chronograph are scales such as the tachymeter, telemetre or the pulsometer, which take centre stage on the new 43m Speedmaster Chronoscope by Omega. The design is inspired by the snail-style central displays that featured in Omega’s chronos in the 1940s, while leaf-shaped hands and the spiral track beneath the Arabic numerals also add to the vintage vibe.
For those who like getting the most out of their watches, here’s what each of those scales do, in a nutshell: The tachymeter on the bezel and the heart of the central scales allows users to figure out the speed at which they are travelling for a specified distance. On the outermost ring of the central scales, the telemeter can be used to calculate how far one is from an event that is both audible and visible, like a lightning flash. (We recommend you don’t try this outside.)
Next to the telemeter is the pulsometer, which was designed, back in the day, for medical practitioners to more easily calculate someone’s pulse. Obviously, these features are as extraneous as mechanical watches are in an age of far more accurate electronic devices, but that’s exactly their allure to horology buffs.
That said, the movements powering these Omega watches are as modern as they come. The display sapphire caseback reveals the Calibre 9908, an Omega Co-Axial Master Chronometer movement. While its Master Chronometer certification means that each watch boasts tested accuracy and exceptional magnetic resistance, the movement also features twin mainspring barrels with a DLC coating that minimises friction. The three-quarter plate of the movement is decorated with “arabesque” Geneva waves.
The Speedmaster Chronoscope is being launched with seven models, six of which come in steel. The steel pieces include two models with silver dials and blued hands; two models with blue dials and rhodium-plated hands; and two “panda” models with silver dials, black subdials and blackened hands. They all feature anodised aluminum bezel rings in blue or black, and come on either leather straps or a three-link steel bracelet.
For those who prefer their tool watches on the more luxurious side, there’s also a special edition in Omega’s exclusive Bronze Gold. Soft pink in colour and corrosion-resistant, the alloy includes 37.5 per cent gold, as well as small amounts of palladium and silver. This special model features an oxidised bronze dial along with silver subdials, and is topped with a bezel ring in brown ceramic. These timepieces are expected to arrive on our shores by (hopefully) mid-October, so start counting down now.
Prices for the Speedmaster Chronoscope start from S$12,200.