From Chrono to Diver: Your Guide to the Different Types of Watches for Men
A stylish watch should be a part of every man's look. But what style should you choose? We take a look at the different types of watches for men.
For some men, watches make up one of the most important, fashionable parts of any of their outfit. Some have even become a status symbol of culture in of themselves, such as a Rolex watch.
The right watch will often stand out as the first thing others see on a well-dressed man.
For other men, a watch is a tool used for a variety of purposes and activities. Divers, hikers, hunters, and other active men alike have long relied on a highly-functional watch to provide them with valuable information.
Really there are different types of watches for men with different purposes.
This article is going to discuss the different types of watches and the type of guy and activity they fit best with. It will equip you to build the perfect watch collection to be prepared for any activity, and look good doing so.
Different Types of Watch Movements
One of the first factors you'll encounter when considering different types of watches is their movement.
Watch movement goes beyond the obvious things you may figure. It includes much more than just the parts of a watch that are always visible, like its hands. A watch's movement consists primarily of the parts that make up its inner workings–its cogs, gears, wheels, levers, and in some more luxurious watches, its Tourbillon Regulator.
Watch movements fall into the three primary categories of quartz, automatic, and manual.
Watches that move by means of quartz crystals are considered to be the most accurate of these types of timepieces.
Quartz watches are powered by a battery. This battery sends electrical impulses to the watch's quartz crystal. When introduced to electricity, quartz vibrates at a specific rate–32,768 times per second to be exact (really exact).
The pulses generated by the vibration of the quartz crystal get sent to a stepping motor. This motor is a piece of machinery which divides a full rotation into a specific number of steps. Every 32,768th pulse is sent to the watch's gear train, thus generating movement once per second.
A type of timepiece movement invented in the late 18th century is automatic, for self-winding movement.
Automatic watches carry no battery and rely on the kinetic energy produced by the natural motion of the wearer's wrist. This movement winds the watch's mainspring which captures this energy. Once captured, it transfers this energy to the regulatory mechanism of the watch, called its escapement.
This mechanism meters out this energy to the balancing wheel of the watch and from there its dial train, which advances the watch hands at regular intervals.
Most automatic watches can be wound manually as well.
Manual, or hand-wound, movement watches are the oldest kind. With automatic watch movements already described, this type of movement requires the least explaining. This is because these two types of watches work in the same way once the watch's mainspring has captured the energy from winding.
The only difference is the winding method one needs to be done by hand, the other through natural movement.
Styles of Different Types of Watches
An easily recognizable, iconic piece of men's fashion any man should have in his watch collection is a sharp chronograph watch.
The chronograph watch is also probably the least utilized watch despite its immense popularity.
In addition to telling time, these watches also record it. By means of three sub-dials which sit within the main dial as well as pushers in the watch's case which activate and stop these, one can record seconds, minutes, and hours with their chronograph watch.
One of the very first watches that is a must for any man's watch portfolio is the chronograph. These watches can be worn in formal settings due to their sleek simplicity, but also in active situations due to their multi-purpose functionality.
Another watch that is simple in style–even if complex in operation–yet by no means simple in the effect it can have is a dress watch.
These types of watches are, as their name suggests, for more formal occasions.
Typically thin, they should maintain aesthetic simplicity and not be encumbered by many watch complications. They should impact subtly, not overtly, complimenting the entirety of a formal outfit as opposed to drawing attention to itself as if the only part of such.
Functional Tactical Watches
Few men spend the majority of their time in leather oxfords and a suit coat.
For other occasions the adventurous man finds himself in there are different types of functional and tactical watches.
One of the most versatile of these kinds is the field watch. This type of watch is rugged, consisting of a tough metal case and hardy glare-proof crystal face cover. A field watch is meant to be able to withstand the rigors of classic trench and field battles, while still maintaining a stylish look.
Another watch falling into this category is the dive watch. Quite as you'd assume, these watches are specifically made for those who spend much of their time in and around water. The first thing these watches should obviously be is highly water-resistant.
It should also be unaffected by increasing pressure levels as a diver descends with it several dozen yards into the ocean depths. Since it will be spending much of its time in saline water, it needs to also be made up of materials that are corrosion-resistant.
Other watch types for specific applications, just as their names suggest are the classic aviator or pilot watch, as well as the racing watch.
Of course, in this day and age, we have the more recent invention of smartwatches.
The array of capabilities these watches possess is almost as many as your smartphone. These watches will no doubt only continue to evolve, advance, and, perhaps at some point in the future, possibly even completely replace some of the watches mentioned above.
Even now some of these watches can compliment a formal outfit one evening, navigate you as you hike to your favorite dive spot, and then be taken several dozen feet into the ocean during your underwater adventure.
Other Factors to Consider When Choosing the Right Watch
Now that you know which types of watches should be considered for different purposes, there are other factors that you need to contemplate. These factors will further affect the specific watch's style, durability, and if it's the right fit for you.
Some of these factors include the watches level of water resistance, different types of watch bands, the watch's battery life, and, of course, its price range.
Give this article a read for a more complete guide of all factors to consider when choosing a watch to add to your collection.
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