Tokunaga on: the merits of mechanical watches and quartz watches - Seiko & Citizen Watch Forum Japanese Watch Reviews, Discussion & Trading
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Old 03-04-2010, 03:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Tokunaga on: the merits of mechanical watches and quartz watches

Authored by Tokunaga

Request: From Ken-san

Can you shed some light on the quartz movement in the Prospex line. I am so partial to the automatic movement that I find it hard to purchase a quartz movement. Even though I did purchase the 300M and love it, I am just having a hard time adjusting to the quartz movement.


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[Merits of mechanical watches]

(1) Mechanical watches are sophisticated with mechanical engineering and we can feast our eyes on the mechanism of those watches.
A high precision mechanical watch is also mechanically possible by the mechanism of the regulating device in which delicate accuracy adjustment is possible. The highest-class mechanical watch of old Grand Seiko : VFA (Very Fine Adjusted) had realized the highest accuracy of }2 sec./day.
We are able to adjust up to one second by the seconds hand stop equipment, and also we can have dialogues with those watches every day at the time of time correction and hand-winding etc.
Although the alternations of the balance wheel are from 5 to 6 beats in general movement and from 8 to 10 beats in a high precision movement, and it is difficult to raise their alternations more than it, you can see many high precision articles of the mechanical watches which have improved the posture- difference by the mechanism of complicated mechanisms, such as tourbillon watches and carrousel watches.

(2) There is few problem on the point of the earth environment and driving energy.
Since an internal mainspring is made into driving energy of the movement, periodical exchange is not needed, and therefor there is no problem on the energy source like a quartz watch.
There is also few problem of the earth environment contamination at the time of battery-dumping of a quartz watch, and also there is no case of rot since a battery is not used.

(3) A handmade and handicraft work can be performed.
The repair for every parts is possible, and it can be semi-permanently used by suitable maintenance.
It is also possible to incorporate the craft work by using a mechanical motion etc.
Many kinds of skeleton watches and complicated watches are available as a masterpiece of watches.

[Merits of quartz watches]

(1) The greatest feature is the point that time accuracy is very high.
As the merits of quartz watches, the greatest feature is the point that time accuracy is very high.
Although the frequency of vibration of the balance wheel in a mechanical watch is from 2.5 to 5 Hz (from 5 to 10 beats/sec.), the frequency of the crystal oscillator have thousands to tens of thousands times higher frequency (from 32768 to 196608 Hz) than that of the balance wheel in a mechanical watch.
Therefor quartz watches have very high accuracy of the deviation, as }a few sec./month or year against }a few sec./day in case of mechanical watches.
It is also possible to adjust more accurate by the accuracy compensation system using higher-frequency-oscillator, various types of thermal compensation device.
And the further improvement, for example electric wave correction watches, is possible in the quartz watches.

(2) The performance of the crystal oscillator is stable for a long period.
The balance wheel with hairspring which vibrates mechanically using energy of the mainspring is weak against the influence of a shock or a posture difference etc. But the quartz oscillator is strong against the influence of a shock or a posture difference etc., therefor the reliability of the quality to carry out is very high. It can be used feeling easy for a long period of time without caring about a deviation of time like mechanical watches.
Since electronic parts are used, the rate of failure is very low compared with mechanical watches, and it have high reliability.
The voltage of the source of a drive in the quartz watches is stable, and performances, such as time accuracy, are stabilized and are obtained for a long period.
There is mass-production nature of electronic products in large quantities and those high precision watches have the outstanding cost performance.
It has evolved into the high reliability watches which aimed at maintenance-free one by which battery exchange is not required and many performances and quality were stabilized.

(3) Many kinds of multifunction watches are possible by using electric sensor..
By using various kinds of sensor, not only standard watches but also multifunction watches are possible for the purpose in outdoor sports etc.

(a) We can obtain various kinds of information, for example the height from sea-level, an atmospheric pressure tendency, direction information, and temperature information as useful outdoor information by using an atmospheric pressure sensor, a direction sensor, a temperature sensor, etc. And a simple weather report can also be done by the multifunction watch.

(b) Carrying a water pressure sensor, a water temperature sensor, etc., we can know diving depth, diving time, water temperature, etc. on real time, and for log-data. It can be recorded and managed as a useful diving information.

(c) We can manage our healthy data, for example the pulse, blood pressure, body temperature, the
number of steps and consumption calorie, for our useful information in good health.
The various amounts of physics other than the standard watch function for knowing time and time are measured by technical innovation, such as a miniaturization of a sensor, and reduction in power.
It can use as the various measurement apparatus and healthy managed apparatus for sports and daily life.

(4) We can use as multi-information instruments in which many kinds of information is available.
It is also possible to incorporate a calculation function, a processing function, a communication
function, information retrieval, a processing function, etc.

(a) As a computer watch, various kinds of calculation / conversion processing and information processing are possible.

(b) Image processing, recording / record processing, etc. are possible as an image-processing watch, a recording functional watch, etc.

(c) Various kinds of communication functions, information retrieval, remote control operation, etc. are possible as a communication functional watch, a remote control watch, etc.
It will become the ultra-small information instrument which can search various information as small arm information machine, and can be processed by innovation of device technology.

(5) It works long duration.
There is a merit which can carry out in use when using in the source of a drive of long continuation and a long life primary battery, and a capacitor and a rechargeable battery, even if it maintains the drive of a watch for a long period, and when you didnft use the watch for a while but the watch is still working.
It is possible to store a driving energy source by the dynamo style, and the formation of an energy long-life battery is possible also for multifunction and multi-information watches.

(a) KINETIC watches are an ideal self-conclusion type power generating watches using automatic generating system(AGS) without using the energy from the outside.

(b) Solar power generating watches are the power generating watches using the light energy from the outside of environmental use type.

(c) Thermal power generating watches are also the power generating watches using a difference of temperature between inside and outside of the watch.

(d) Hand-winding power generating watches are the power generating watches to which the userfs kind participation is needed.
It will become more small by the technical innovation of various dynamo styles without battery exchange on quartz watches.

[Consideration]

All watches are the noble-minded living machines for which human beings have created as the mechanical watches and as quartz watches. In those creatures, there are "the culture of the time" which tells human beings' history, "the law of the time" which keeps social order, gmankind's philosophyh which tells their feelings, "the drama of sports" with sweat and tears, and also "the art of the time" which charms people's mind deeply by the ultimate mechanism.
Both mechanical watches and quartz watches have their individuality, and both are alive with you with respectful character in this world.
Although determined by the style of your life, and TPO, since my selection basis of watches is summarized in the next table, please make it reference which to be chosen.



Human beings will continue to create more useful watches in future. Please touch your own favorite watch with your kind heart and love for ever.


Thank you for reading this long document.

Ikuo Tokunaga




Ikuo Tokunaga

Picture credit: Seiko
__________________
"That a wristwatch is a small celestial theater. It is a small sky. A device for the measure of shadows." -Gabriel Gudding

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