The Seventies Chronograph from Glashütte Original is now available in a limited edition series of 100 pieces in two dial options. Here is our full hands-on detailed review.
We covered the Seventies Chronograph, then available in blue or grey dial during our conversation with Dieter Pachner. Here is the latest edition – limited to 100 pieces in each colour – a green fumê and a grey fumê – a dial treatment which GO calls the dégradé, made in their own dial manufacture in Pforzheim.
Glashütte Original Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date Special Limited Edition
The GO Seventies Chronograph was introduced 5 years ago, and have met with good success commercially.
The case, dial and hands
The case is the block like style prevailing in watches from the 1970s. With a clever look which borders on being nerdy and cool at the same time, the design is a love it or hate it kind. We loved it. The stainless steel case is faceted and gently slopes around the angular overall shape. The case sides are also alternately finished in a brushed style with polished elements juxtaposed.
The dial is a proven chronograph layout with central stop seconds, 30-minute and 12-hour counters with flyback mechanism, small second, power reserve display as well as the characteristic Panorama Date. The rhodium-plated rod indexes give the timepiece a clean, clear look.
The “magic” so to speak happens at the dial. The dégradé effect is very similar to the fumê that is Moser is currently famous for. The difference is that Moser sources their dials from a contractor, but GO makes it in-house in their facility in Pforzheim.
And the GO watches goes back to the 70s with watches which actually sport a similar dial. These dials are made by the same dial factory, then T. Müller, but now owned by Glashütte Original.
The dial is made in a multi step process, begining with the use of rotating brushes to apply a sunray finish radiating from the center. The dials are then galvanized, and a green or grey lacquer is applied in several passes. Black lacquer is then applied at varying angles using a hand-held spray gun, resulting in the colour gradation from black at the edges to the green or grey at the center. The lacquer coated dials are then fired in a kiln to burn in the colour.
The result is this beautiful gradation of colour from the brilliance in the center into the black at the edges. The dial itself is lightly textured, providing further visual interest. We found both of them totally mesmerizing.
The movement: Caliber 37-2
The movement used is the now proven Caliber 37, which debuted in 2014 in the mk1 guise, and with minor modifications made mk2 in 2015, appearing in the Seventies Chronograph.
The movement is very beautifully decorated in the traditional Glashütte Original sense, with all the finnisage elements addressed very well. The finishing work is all executed by hand, and this is evident in the high level of finish achieved.
We particularly enjoy the excellence of the handwork shown in the anglage, the Glashütte ribbing and the mirror finish of the steel parts like the swan-neck and column wheel.
Some may lament that the balance cock is not hand engraved, but in a discussion with the head of design at GO, the reason is that a simpler decoration is selected for this watch to match the more austere aesthetics of the Seventies Collection.
Beating at 28,800 bph with a 70 hour power reserve, it has proven to be reliable in its years of service.
The Competitive Landscape
The world of a manufacture column wheel chronograph watch is one which is quite heavily competed. The landscape is littered with numerous models which can potentially address what the GO Seventies Chronograph offers. However, those which are inspired by the blocky look of the seventies design are few and far between. And at S$ 19,800, we think the pricing is very modest for the quality that is offered.
Perhaps TAG Heuer’s Monaco is a direct competitor. It weighs in at a less expensive US$ 5,900. Although the heritage is undisputed, the fit and finish of the TAG is targeted at a lower end of the market than the more lofty aspirations achieved by the GO.
At the price, the obvious elephant in the room is the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona. This is perhaps the most desirable sporty chronograph in the market, with demand outstripping Rolex’s already considerable manufacturing capacity. Readers would be familiar with, and often lament the difficulty to buy one at the retail price of S$ 16,600.
We think the watch most suited to competing with the GO is perhaps the Breitling Premier B01 Chronograph. At S$ 12,200 the Premier is less expensive, but it is a round cased watch, with clean elegant lines, with no links to the seventies block like aesthetics. The B01 is an accomplished chronograph, equipped with column wheel and manufactured in-house by Breitling, but the decoration and finishing is not at the level of GO.
This is a fine chronograph, whose movement is built in the classical way, and decorated in the high end haute horlogerie style. Yet it does not carry the very high price tags of the pure play haute horlogerie chronographs, but aimed at the more modest, sporty, stainless steel cased market. What sets it apart from its competition is the seventies inspired case design and the absolutely gorgeous dials. It straddles a nice balance between a nicely made and finished chronograph with a modest price. A win-win in our books.
Our choice: the Glashütte Original Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date Green Dial
We spent a good three days in Germany with these watches, and even though both versions are compelling beauties, the green version stole our hearts, and is our choice with the rugged Nubuck strap.
Glashütte Original Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date Special Limited Edition Specifications
Model name: Seventies Chronograph Panorama Date
Dial: galvanized grey or green with sunray decoration and varnished in black with dégradé effect, hour markers with luminous spot
Launch year: 2019
Limited edition: 100 pieces
1-37-02-05-02-35 (Calf nubuck leather strap with fold fastener) in grey
1-37-02-05-02-70 (stainless steel bracelet) in grey
1-37-02-04-02-35 (Calf nubuck leather strap with fold fastener) in green
1-37-02-04-02-70 (stainless steel bracelet) in green
Movement: automatic winding, Calibre 37-02, exquisitely finished
Functions: central hour, minute, small second, second-stop, Panorama Date, chronograph with flyback, stop second, 30-minute and 12-hour counters, power reserve display
Power reserve: 70 hours (± 5 %)
Oscillating frequency: 28,800 vph, equivalent to 4 Hz
Case: stainless steel, polished, sapphire crystal on top and bottom, waterproof up to 10 bar
Dimensions: diameter: 40.0 mm, height: 14.1 mm
Strap: Calf nubuck leather strap with fold fastener, stainless steel bracelet