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Tissot Adds A Valjoux-Powered Automatic Chronograph To The Popular PRX Collection (Live Pics & Price)

An integrated sports chronograph joins the PRX collection for the first time with two dial variants

calendar | ic_dehaze_black_24px By Erik Slaven | ic_query_builder_black_24px 5 min read |
Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic Valjoux

Tissot introduced the PRX Powermatic 80 integrated sports watch last year (following a quartz model) and it’s been wildly popular in the affordable sports watch market. This is clearly one of the hottest trends at the moment with models like the Bell & Ross BR05, Citizen Caliber 0200 and Frederique Constant Highlife Worldtimer Manufacture positioned as accessible alternatives to heavyweights like the Royal Oak and Nautilus. The Powermatic 80 version brought a lot to the table for only EUR 650 (hence the popularity) and now the Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic continues the winning strategy. 

A LOOK BACK AT THE 1970s

The origins of the PRX collection go back to 1978 with an integrated sports watch powered by quartz – it was the heart of the quartz crisis, after all. It wasn’t known as PRX at the time, but rather the Seastar. It was a time and date piece with a thin barrel-shaped case, substantial bezel and integrated bracelet with flat links. A handful of years later, Tissot registered the PRX name, which stands for P-Precise, R-Robust and X-10 bars of water resistance (serves as a Roman numeral in this case). Today’s models are inspired by the original from the late 1970s and bring a modern touch to a popular, classic formula.

Vintage 1978 Tissot Seastar PRX - 1
The late 1970s Tissot Seastar that inspired the current PRX collection

Of course, this isn’t Tissot’s first vintage-inspired, automatic chronograph. Models like the Heritage 1973 Chronograph and Heritage 1948 Chronograph show that the brand is committed to retro chronographs that are also in high demand these days. The new PRX Chronograph Automatic stands out by combining both trends – vintage-inspired design and integrated bracelet – with an affordable series that allows watch enthusiasts without spare Mercedes money to dive right in. Integrated bracelets were all the rage in the 1970s with the legendary Royal Oak debuting in 1972 and Nautilus in 1976, and Tissot’s Seastar was in 1978 what the PRX models are today – stylish, affordable and trending.

Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic Valjoux

CASE AND DESIGN

The stainless steel case is larger than the 40mm PRX Powermatic 80 at 42mm in diameter, but it’s still wearable for a modern wrist, yet the Valjoux movement adds to the height, at 14.5mm. It, fortunately, doesn’t go too far like the Tissot PRS 516 Automatic Chronograph at 45mm, which was a bit much. It features classic design elements like brushed surfaces with polished bevels and an integrated bracelet with flat links and is thoroughly modern with an AR sapphire crystal and exhibition case back. Flat, integrated pushers at 2 and 4 o’clock keep it sleek and stealthy, and water resistance is rated at 100 metres (or 10 bars, hence the X in PRX).

Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic Valjoux

Going back to the bracelet, it looks like a three-link design at first glance but is a cool single link arrangement that tapers from the case to the triple-blade folding clasp. It also features an “interchangeable system” or quick-release levers. On the wrist, it should remain comfortable and wears smaller than the dimensions suggest with the absence of traditional lugs.

PANDA & REVERSE PANDA brushed DIALS

The PRX Chronograph Automatic has two vertically brushed dial options with a tri-compax layout. There’s blue with silver sub-dials and silver with black sub-dials, the latter having rose gold (coloured) hands and indices. The blue model has applied silver indices with Super-LumiNova and silver hour and minute baton hands with luminous inserts. The silver dial has the same layout (with rose gold accents). An angled date window is tucked between 4 and 5 o’clock, which is a useful feature, but an aesthetic I often dislike. It’s generally inoffensive in this case and the original Seastar did have a date complication. The sub-dials are arranged with a 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock, a 12-hour counter at 6 o’clock and small seconds at 9 o’clock. The silver dial with gold accents is the dressier of the two, but both have a rather relaxed, retro vibe that can go from the boardroom to the beach. The brand’s logo is printed in its modern sans serif and not the vintage script of a Heritage piece like the Visodate Automatic. A minute track spans the outermost perimeter and is silver on the blue dial and black on the silver dial.

Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic Valjoux

A RELIABLE SWISS WORKHORSE

Powering the chronograph is the ETA A05.H31, based on the older Valjoux 7753 and seen in other Tissot models like the Heritage 1973 Chronograph. It has 27 jewels, beats at 28,800vph (4Hz) with a (recently extended) 60-hour power reserve. Functions include central hours, minutes and chronograph seconds, 30-minute counter, 12-hour counter, small seconds and date. The movement is decorated with perlage and features a custom open-worked rotor. It’s also a cam-actuated chronograph as a column wheel would’ve pushed the price a bit north.

Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic Valjoux

FINAL THOUGHTS

I’m sure this pair of chronographs will be popular like the PRX Powermatic 80. It has all of the ingredients of a retro integrated sports watch with the added appeal of a tri-compax chronograph. With this style, I prefer the simplicity of time and date only like the Powermatic 80, although I’m probably in the minority here. Affordable models like the Maurice Lacroix Aikon Automatic Chronograph prove that sports watches and chronographs are like chips and salsa – a combo you can’t ignore. It’s great that Tissot is offering both panda and reversed panda options, and I like that the dials are vertically brushed a la the 1978 original. The waffle-like dial on the Powermatic 80 is very cool, but let’s be honest, Audemars Piguet was here first. The overall execution is very impressive, belying the affordable price, and Tissot just seems to do it best in this price range.

Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic Valjoux

If a Royal Oak or Nautilus is out of your reach (it’s out of mine) and something like the Bell & Ross BR05 is still a bit high, the Tissot PRX Chronograph Automatic offers great value for such a cool-looking, Swiss integrated chronograph. I can find little fault. The two watches retail for EUR 1,495 excluded taxes and will be available to purchase in June 2022.

For more information, please visit Tissot’s website.

https://monochrome-watches.com/tissot-prx-chronograph-automatic-introducing-hands-on-price/

10 responses

  1. I F’in called it! Too bad they ditched the waffle dial on this, it looks cheap(er) than the standard automatic counterpart.

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  2. Waffle dial would have been too busy and overdone on this, and sunburst might have gotten a bit lost; good choice to go for vertical brushing instead. Too bad the non-chrono 40mm still wears too large for my wrist with the fixed end links stretching the effective lug-to-lug out by about three kilometers, and this 42mm is out of the question. I’m holding out for the 38mm accidentally teased by Tissot’s poorly managed Mexico site, which also had a blue dial 18k bezel I hadn’t seen before.

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  3. This is not only very attractive, it also seems like a great deal. Other watches with the same movement (from Mido, Tissot, Certina etc) are priced 300-700 € higher.

  4. Honestly. Unless the waffle dial looks much better in person then it does in photos, it has never done anything for me. So much so that its the main reason why i havnt gotten on yet. This on the other hand…….this is prob my next watch. wow.

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  5. Great looking watch, but really, was the date necessary? We don’t live in the 70s any more. Nobody really needs a mechanical wrist watch with a date – we have them because they look and feel good, ergo lose the date – it ruins the dial and we’re stuck with that pusher at 10 o’clock in the case of this 7753.

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  6. At this point Tissot is the best Swiss watch out. The Swatch group needs to stop wasting money on Omega marketing, and push Tissot to that upper level they deserve.

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  7. I DO need the date and use it often.It’s a quick glance at my wrist.You must be one of these people that walks around all day with a phone in one hand and a coffee cup in the other. odd that you complain about the date but are perfectly ok with the PRX instead of a 6 on the 12 hour sub dial. No we don’t live in the 70s anymore. Too bad. The 2020s are nothing to get excited about. There are not many shouting the ‘joy’ of living in 2022.

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  8. @waffle911 well I’ve done the mock up for it, and from what I see from my PRX PM80 with its subdued blue waffle dial, it certainly won’t make it busy and in your face at all even including the white waffle version which is more like a texture rather than the tapisserie dial on AP RO chrono which I handled a few in my watchmaker bench before. I get it people would scream from their lung out “it’s AP homage” but no, they are decades late as omega made it before in their 50s in their seamaster line and integrated bracelet in ’68 with their constellation line which would make sense as they are both working together ever since from 20s-30s like how was Tudor to its Rolex. And it’s 35mm btw, the CEO of Tissot said that the dimensions was 1:1 with the original Seastar in quartz, unless if you referring to another going to be released PRX PM80 in 38mm which I haven’t seen yet online..

  9. Interesting to comment on the 4pm date window as a potential negative….but its like that on the AP royal oak chrono but no one comments on the 4pm date placement on that watch…why..just coz its an AP?

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