Watch Movements Explained
Watch enthusiasts understand that a timepiece is more than its exterior construction — what lies underneath to power the watch is just as important. At ZINVO we produce fashion-forward watches that aesthetically stand out from the crowd. In addition to the striking looks of ZINVO watches, we also equip them with reliable watch movements to ensure that the functions of the watch, whether hour, minutes, seconds, or date, remain in solid working order. Here we delve into the three major types of watch movements for a little horology education.
Quartz vs. Mechanical Movements
The two main types of watch movements, also known as calibers, are quartz movements and mechanical movements. Quartz movements require a battery to run and they offer better accuracy than mechanical movements. In a quartz caliber, the electrical current from a battery causes the quartz crystal within the movement to vibrate. Those vibrations trigger the motor, which in turn moves the hands on the dial of a watch. Quartz movements have long battery lives, thus battery changes normally only need to occur every few years.
At ZINVO, we have several watch models furnished with high-quality quartz movements. For instance, at the heart of ZINVO ONE timepieces is the reliable Swiss-Made Ronda 785 quartz caliber with 42 months of battery life. Offering the hours, minutes, and seconds functions, in addition to the date, the ZINVO ONE is not only an ultra fashionable men’s sports watch, but also a reliable, accurate, and practical timepiece.
Mechanical movements, on the other hand, do not require a battery; instead, they depend on a wound-up mainspring to power the mechanics of the caliber. Once released, the energy travels from the mainspring to a barrel to gear trains, which then move the hands on the face of the timepiece. How the mainspring gets wound-up depends on the type of mechanical movement it is — automatic or manual.
Automatic vs. Manual Mechanical Movements
As its name suggests, a manual mechanical movement requires the wearer to manually wind the crown on a daily basis to keep the movement running. The winding of the crown allows the mainspring to store the energy needed to drive the watch caliber.
Conversely, an automatic movement does not require manual winding. Instead, an automatic movement, also known as a self-winding movement, is outfitted with a rotor. The natural motion of one’s wrist causes the rotor to move around, which then winds the mainspring. Therefore, as long as the watch is worn, it will continue to run. The power reserve of an automatic caliber refers to how long the watch will continue to run while in a stationary position, such as back in one’s watch box.
More labor intensive, complex, and expensive to create than a quartz movement, mechanical movements are often more revered by watch aficionados than their quartz counterparts. Our signature watch at ZINVO, the Blade, is driven by an automatic mechanical movement. The Miyota 8215 self-winding caliber powers the hours, minutes, and seconds rotating disk, as well as the date function of the Blade. Offering up to 42 hours of power reserve, the automatic movement can be admired via the watch’s clear glass caseback. It’s only fitting that our most popular watch model is equipped with a premium quality mechanical watch movement.