The Hamilton Intra-matic Chronograph H watch hands-on

The Hamilton Intra-matic Chronograph H watch hands-on

09 June 2021 | Hamilton , Watch Reviews

We asked, and they listened and delivered: here is the Hamilton American Classic Intra-matic Chronograph H in all its beauty or, let's cut a long story short, the Hamilton Intra-matic Chronograph H. What matters the most is that the Swiss-American watchmaker has released a four-piece collection of timepieces that place it ahead of the competition when engineering a chronograph geared towards the most demanding vintage Chrono die-hard fan. The cherry on the cake is that the new offering comes standard with a manual-winding mechanical movement for the first time. You'll read more by reading the article; in the meantime, watchmaking proves it is a business where tradition often wins hands down over innovation, and, case in point, the new one is a jab to those who are eager to innovate or disrupt for the sake of it.

hamilton-intra-matic-chronograph-hWith the Chronograph H, the seventies-inspired manual-winding two-register chronograph reaches new heights and might easily outperform its self-winding sibling while sharing most of the specification sheet; the case measures 40 mm and is paired to either a panda or a reverse panda dial; it houses a large crown and oversized pushers. The Hamilton Intra-matic Chronograph H pays tribute to the 1968 A and B chronographs. Let's ask Hamilton to reissue the Chrono-matic equipped Chrono of the past, with the winding crown placed on the left, too, and we'll end up wearing the coolest two-counters chronograph priced under the 2000 Euros threshold.

hamilton-intra-matic-chronograph-h-4Hamilton Watch aimed to offer two similarly sized and performing chronographs, on paper, to different groups of admirers and potential buyers. Housing a manual-winding movement and offering a slightly different style, the new Chronograph H watch is a call to action to vintage watches aficionados, who'll find cues from a long-gone era. The dial comes with baton indexes partially filled with vintage Super-Luminova® and no date window at all, while a glass box sapphire crystal mimics a Chronograph A's plastic glass.

hamilton-intra-matic-chronograph-h-6Once secured onto your wrist, you might find yourself disappointed in discovering the case thickness' reduction is negligible. The case moves from 14.7 mm (the automatic Intra-matic) to 14.35 mm you'll measure on the Chronograph H instead. We all want a slimmer case when buying a watch this engineered, yet the two options are comparable in size, back to back. Here is why from a technical standpoint: the new calibre H-51 derives from the self-winding H-31 calibre. While sharing the same baseplate, they also share the same power reserve and a technical layout looking for robustness rather than stand-out features, like a column wheel mechanism or a silicon balance spring, hard to get in this price range.

hamilton-intra-matic-chronograph-h-3I think the package is acceptable; you're short on exclusivity under this set of constraints. However, I can't deny I'd love to see the new Chrono slide under the cuff and offer a smaller presence once on your wrist. Here is where both Hamilton and ETA engineers should join their forces to upgrade further a watch whose boldness, touch and feel, outperform the self-winding options and several options out there. Among the upgrades, I'll add the chance to replace a bracelet with a strap, and back, quickly. A quick-change device is something you can't miss across your product portfolio, and I'd love to swap between a mesh bracelet and a strap at the single push of a button.

(Photo credit: Marco Antinori per Horbiter®)

Gaetano C @Horbiter®

Instagram - Gaetano Cimmino

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