Junghans, the German brand from the Black Forest, is renowned for its minimalist Bauhaus-inspired designs personified by its Max Bill and Meister collections. The Meister collection, which appeared in the 1930s, is also home to the elegant retro Chronoscope line of chronographs and the S Chronoscope models that are more resilient, rugged and contemporary. The latest model to join the family is a large, sturdy 200m water-resistant chronograph with an attractive midnight-blue dial and two strap choices named the Junghans Meister S Chronoscope.
Junghans is something of an institution in Germany and, at one point in its history (1903), was the largest manufacturer of clocks in the world. Proud of its solid and almost uninterrupted history (founded in 1861), Junghans plays the German design card with great credibility. Still producing watches in Schramberg, the historical company site in the Black Forest, Junghans continues to offer well-designed products at accessible prices. Far from limiting production to Bauhaus-inspired models, Junghans has a diverse portfolio with groovy 1970s editions like the recently released FIS Edition Lemon and even a pilot’s watch inspired by the brand’s service watches for Bundeswehr pilots in the 1950s.
With its 45mm diameter and 15.9mm case height, the new Meister S Chronoscope is unabashedly large. Protected by curved crown guards, the screw-down crown and the seven-times screwed caseback ensure the 200m water-resistance of the stainless steel case. A prevalence of brushed surfaces underscores the sporty attitude of the chronograph with polished accents on the bezel, pushers and the alternating links of the steel bracelet.
The attractive matte midnight-blue colour of the dial follows the current trend for gradient dials and is lighter in the centre and more saturated at the perimeter. Sharing the same tricompax layout as the dressier, less robust Chronoscope models, the dial of the Chronoscope S has a 30-minute counter at noon, a 12-hour counter at six o’clock and a smaller sub-dial for seconds at nine o’clock. The three concave counters are black with white markings, and the two chronograph totalisers at 12 and 6 o’clock are indicated by ‘macchiato’ brown (light brown) hands.
Prominent hour markers with a slight curve and a strip of luminescent material extend from the sloping flange over the dial. The hour, minute and central chronograph seconds hands have a skeletonised area. As the brand point out, the luminous white treatment used on all the hands and indices is environmentally friendly. Matching the light brown colour of the chronograph totalisers, the curved central chronograph seconds hand also has a light brown tip. A domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating on both sides protects the dial.
A day-date complication in English or German is positioned in a split window at three o’clock. Junghans’ name and star logo are printed above the window with “CHRONOSCOPE” printed below.
The beating heart of the Meister S Chronoscope is the Junghans calibre J880.1, based on the ETA 7750, with a branded rotor. This 25-jewel automatic movement beats at 28,800vph (4Hz), has a 48-hour power reserve, day-date complication, hours, minutes and small seconds, stop second function, and 30-minute and 12-hour counters. The 7750 is a real workhorse in the industry, with origins dating back to the 1970s.
As mentioned, the S Chronoscope can be bought with a seven-row stainless steel bracelet with a folding clasp and a fine adjustment feature or a black rubber strap. The second option echoes the colour scheme of the dial and has a blue leather inlay, light brown top stitching and the name of the model in capital letters on the inside, allowing ventilation.
The Junghans Meister S Chronoscope with a rubber strap retails for EUR 2,340 (incl. tax), while the stainless steel bracelet version retails for EUR 2,440 (inc. tax). For more information, please consult junghans.de.