The queen of all the complications, the most famous one that you can find in all type of watches, from affordable ones to very high-end timepieces. The Chronograph is used to calculate elapsed amount of times with an independent sweep second hand. It can be started, stopped, and returned to zero by successive pressure on the pushers. The term chronograph is often conflated with the term chronometer. Where “Chronograph” refers to the function of a watch, chronometer is a measure of how well is adjusted a movement and of its accuracy.
A dive watch was made to be used under the deep salty waters as a timing instrument for divers that needed to know how much oxygen time left they had. Usually, we consider a dive watch as professional if it can resist up to 300m or a pressure of 30 bars. Most of the dive watches are equipped with a rotating bezel that helps to know the remaining time of oxygen. A dive watch can be combined with other complications, such as the chronograph.
A GMT watch, or UTC watch as the official term is since 1960, is a very useful tool for travelers and businessmen, as it displays a second time-zone. There are several variations of indicating a second time zone, which we all gather in this category. There are the so-called Office GMT watches, Traveller GMT watches and others called Dual Time watches. The common denominator is that time in another time zone, and the own time zone of the wearer, is indicated.
With or without a chronograph, these timekeeping instruments all share some common features. As military tools (or at least inspired by military tools), pilot watches are usually solid and functional. They are built to survive the rough life in an airplane’s cockpit and are made to be used in tough conditions: magnetic environments, low-light conditions, pressurized and/or cold cabins. Usually, they come with a black dial with highly contrasting (luminescent) hour markers, and a triangle at the 12 o’clock position. Legibility is the key.
A World Timer is a specific type of GMT Watch that not only displays a second time-zone but all the time zones around the world. With the help of a rotating disc around the dial, you can check instantaneously what time is it in every main cities all around the globe. Even if they present a quite complicated display, it is the perfect watch for people that are often traveling or that work in an international environment.
For this category we’ll take the description a little loose, because a formal dress watch is small, classically styled and only tells the time, preferably just the hours and minutes. It also has to be thin enough to fit under your cuffs, and preferably, it has to be made in a precious metal, such as gold or platinum. However when asking people, they will also name dress watches in steel, or even black-coated, and sometimes with a small, not too touting, complication, like a date, big date and/or power reserve. You’ll find “dressy” watches in this category.