What is a quartz watch movement?

What is a quartz watch movement?

A common question and one that is completely understandable from someone brand new to the world of watches: what is a quartz watch movement? From quartz movements to mechanical movements and everything in between, it is bound to be confusing at first to grasp the differences between each. But don’t worry, you have come to the right place!

A quartz watch is powered by a battery and works using an electronic oscillator that transmits an electric current through a piece of crystal quartz. This current vibrates at a high speed of around 3,768 times a second until this frequency is released through a small stepping motor and converted into a single pulse every second. The consistent movement of the watch hands is a result of this pulse.

Pros to Quartz Movements:

  • Cheap – Since quartz movements consist of fewer parts, they are generally cheaper to produce and cheaper to buy. Many fashion and designer watch brands choose to use quartz movements within their designs to keep their prices low.
  • Accurate – Quartz movements are also known for being the most accurate in the industry with an accuracy of around 15 seconds a month.
  • Easy and affordable to service – All kinds of watch movements require maintenance every now and then, but quartz watches are one of the easiest and cheapest to get serviced. Quartz watches will need their battery replacing every 2-3 years and many recommend having the movement cleaned out for optimal functionality as well.

Cons to Quartz Movements:

  • Lack of craftsmanship – Unlike mechanical movements that consist of lots of tiny, intricate components, quartz watches are simple and cheap to make. The work that goes into making a mechanical movement is breathtaking and the variety of intricate components working together is almost like magic. When you consider the amount of time it takes for a watchmaker to piece together every tiny part of a mechanical movement, it brings the higher price point into perspective. This is something that lacks in quartz watches.
  • Fewer special complications to choose from – Mechanical movements are also able to include an array of incredible complications that quartz watches can’t such as tourbillons, perpetual calendars and moonphase windows.

If you want to learn more about quartz movements and understand the difference between mechanical watches and quartz watches, click here.

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