The chronoscope name hasn’t been seen since the 2000s and this new revival decides that it will bring together all of the traditional measurement scales associated with a chronograph.
The dial is busy but it’s busy for a reason. It’s because they’ve crammed everything into it. Not only will the chronograph be used as a stopwatch but it can also be used to measure speed, distance, and your own heart rate!
A standard chronograph on the old Speedmasters had only the tachymeter scale around the bezel that measures speed. This new one? All the bells and whistles are present: a telemeter scale to calculate the distance between objects, and a pulsometer that helps to measure your heart rate or respiration rate. These are those two little circles that you’ll find on the dial.
This will make watch historians and nerds froth at the mouth because this new Speedmaster Chronoscope is a celebration of history! Tachymeters were very popular with racecar drivers for obvious reasons before digital stopwatches appeared. Telemeter scales were often used by pilots and watches with pulsometers are still referred to as ‘doctor’s watches’ for its simple usefulness in their profession. Having all three of these on one watch is a celebration of mechanical watchmaking and its various uses and to be perfectly honest, it works very well here.
The watch is retro in design and that works fantastically with the historical theme they’re going for. The highlight is the steel-on-steel ref. 3220.127.116.11.02.001 – it looks fantastic and is perhaps the most legible of the collection. However, the steel-on-leather ref. 318.104.22.168.03.001, really fits the retro aesthetic best.
There are four main variations overall – three in steel and one in gold. The steel variants have the choice of either a blue dial with white accents, a white dial with blue accents, or white with black and red accents. The gold variant is the black sheep of the bunch (brown sheep?). It features a brown dial with matching gold highlights.
What’s powering these watches is the hand-wound calibre 9908 and it has the METAS/Master Chronometer certification and a co-axial escapement. It offers a 60-hour power reserve.
The Omega Speedmaster Chronoscope is available with a steel bracelet for $13,200 and with a leather strap for $12,725. The gold version will set you back $21,450.