The Battle of Automatic Chronographs – IWC vs. Glashütte Original (the White Dial Edition)

By rolex
April 24, 2021
18 min read

This up close and personal article wasn’t something we really wanted to do… But as of late, subsequent to shooting photographs for the audit of the Glashütte Senator Chronograph Panorama Date, I put the watch around my work area, directly close to another chronograph… A white dial IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3714. Also, that’s how the thought for this battle of automatic chronographs arose. Two somewhat Germanic-looking watches, with white dials, rich yet not over-dressed plans, from two of the most regarded brands. This won’t be a simple battle! 

In the left corner, the cutting edge symbol in IWC’s assortment, the exemplary Portugieser Chronograph reference 3714 with white dial and blue lists – the one with a Valjoux-based development. In the correct corner, another attractive watch, significantly more later, with strong contentions in regards to its development, the GO Senator Chronograph in steel with an easygoing white dial. Likewise with all our eye to eye articles, we investigated the two models first – here for the IWC Portugieser Chronograph and here for the Glashütte Original Senator Chronograph – just to be certain we didn’t miss anything out and about. What’s more, similarly as with every one of our battles, before we give you an unmistakable decision (if at any time I figure out how to do that), we need to take a gander at all the parts of these (both extraordinary) watches in a fair way.

CASE, DESIGN AND WRIST PRESENCE

Before we take a gander at the cases and plans in more subtleties, these two watches are, from the outset, close regarding spirit… But not as far as execution. A brisk outline won’t do equity on exactly how extraordinary these watches really are. In the event that we go down to the littlest subtleties, the way of thinking behind the Glashütte Original is not quite the same as what you’ll find in the IWC. Furthermore, that’s why this comparative survey should be exhaustive, otherwise, we could undoubtedly miss the point.

To start with this up close and personal, we first need to survey the case and generally plan. The IWC Portugieser is an exemplary watch, practically unaltered since its presentation more than 20 years prior, in 1998 – and indeed, the plan even returns to the 1995 IWC Portugieser DoppelChronograph Ref. 3712, as the 3714 is, plan savvy, similar watch without the split-seconds pusher. This implies that we’ve had a considerable amount of time to become acquainted with this exquisite, ageless chronograph watch. No curve balls here.

The instance of the IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3714 estimates 40.9mm in width, with a controlled stature of 12.6mm – which is on the meager side for an automatic chronograph. The haul to-carry measurement is around 47mm and the caseback is domed, consequently retaining some the thickness. The hauls are very long yet bended enough to bring about a compact watch.

As I clarified in my audit of this watch, it is a spotless, prudent and thorough model – something that befits the 1990s rendition of IWC, affected by Günter Blümlein. You just begin to value the Portugieser once you’re wearing it. The excellence of the 3714 is that it is a bezel-less watch, with a super wide precious stone that covers the whole surface of the case – and is significantly bigger, as the bezel tightens when joining the casebands.

The rest of the watch feels exemplary, strong, top notch and not excessively planned like a portion of the IWCs created during the last part of the 2000s. The sides are brushed, the level surfaces and pushers/crown are cleaned, the caseback is plain. It is perfect, smooth and a long way from decisive – and I mean it in the most ideal way.

The Glashütte Senator Chronograph Panorama Date is a lot more youthful watch, which was first introduced in 2014 in gold. In 2017, it came in steel with a dark dial and a year ago, the brand added the model we have here for our survey, with a white dial. Presently, being a watch delivered in Saxony, there are rules to regard and a Germanic feeling of clean plan is accordingly an essential. In this occurrence, the instance of the GO Senator Chronograph doesn’t disappoint.

Design-wise, the instance of this Senator watch is on the perfect and specialized side of things. The bezel is flimsy, the drags are, in the exemplary Saxon way, moderately solid and wide, yet on account of this watch, short, bended and compact. The case combines brushed surfaces and cleaned emphasizes, all extraordinarily executed, with clear division lines between the surfaces. One pleasant detail is to be found as an afterthought, with its very much coordinated pushers: they are non-meddling, both outwardly and when wearing the watch.

Now, let’s talk extents. The Senator Chronograph Panorama Date is on the huge side, with a case estimating 42mm in breadth, which isn’t that a lot of an issue considering the 48mm haul to-carry measurement and the compact carries. The primary distinction with the IWC comes from the 14.6mm thickness of this GO. This can be clarified by the sapphire caseback and, for the most part, by the development within the case – however more on that later. Don’t hope to slip it carefully under your sleeve. In this case, the GO is more easygoing than the IWC.

On the wrist, these two watches offer incredible comfort. As said, the cases highlight bended hauls which make them even. One of the principle positive parts of the IWC is this capacity to combine the most amazing aspect the two universes: the comfort of a moderately little watch with the vibe of having an enormous piece on the wrist. Presence on one side, comfort on the other.

On the other hand, the GO will require a bigger wrist. In all actuality, it isn’t a lot bigger than the IWC (recollect that the 40.9mm concerns the case, not the bezel), so all things considered, the two watches feel equivalent. In any case, having a more extensive bezel and a higher case, the Senator has more presence on the wrist and is heavier. I have shot both on my (little) 16.5cm wrist and you can see that the GO is bigger – yet still comfortable and impeccably balanced.

Conclusion: Both watches are significantly planned. Both are exemplary, ageless pieces that won’t leave style in the coming years – consistently significant when putting such sums in a watch. An interesting perspective is that, from these two, the most “Teutonic” is really the Swiss watch (OK, it comes from the German-talking part of Switzerland) and the GO has a seriously invigorating, less severe plan compared to the IWC.

In terms of generally speaking execution, there’s no unmistakable victor here. The GO may be a smidgen more exact in gathering and refined in wrapping up. However, the stature of the Senator can be risky for a few. The IWC is more attentive, more controlled. I’d say that the IWC wins a point here, yet just barely. It’s a nearby battle.

Dial and display

Here once more, from the start sight, both the IWC Portugieser Chronograph reference 3714 and the Glashütte Senator Chronograph Panorama Date share a similar soul: playing on evenness and equilibrium, with white dials and dull differentiating highlights, with an easygoing/rich (and not energetic) feeling. Be that as it may, by and by, it’s about details.

The IWC, while being controlled by a development dependent on a Valjoux design, includes an alternate showcase. This watch is about evenness, in any event, for its dial, which may strike some as inflexible and exacting. The thought with the IWC is to draw a line from 12 to 6 o’clock and each side echoes the other, right down to the engravings on the dial. It is adjusted, rich and wonderful to the eye.

Regarding the dial, the variant we have here is the marginally nautical model, with blue accents. All things considered, it includes similar dial as the notorious adaptation with brilliant accents. The base for the dial is a marginally metallic brilliant white tone with a lustrous completion. In specific conditions, the dial even sparkles somewhat and plays well with the encompassing light – it goes from a warm white to a cool, steel-like tone. The Arabic numerals are first rate, however not applied on the dial yet stamped.

The hands of the IWC are an accolade for the soonest models, with a leaf profile. All the hands are amazingly flimsy and refined, with a dark blue tone. Intelligibility is heavenly in practically all conditions, without reflections, however just during the day. The IWC doesn’t highlight a solitary iridescent spot. This, indeed, affirms the more conventional occupation of this watch. Concerning the presentation, the IWC transfers the actual quintessence of a chronograph, with just the hours and minutes, a little seconds, a focal chronograph hand and a 30-minute counter. Voilà… no extra highlights here.

Concerning the Glashütte Original, there’s more going on with this watch, and not just regarding show. Above all else, while the IWC feels extremely formal in this angle, the GO is more easygoing. It highlights implement hour markers and glowing material on both the files and the principle hands. Additionally, the dark on-white plan isn’t just about as dressy as the IWC.

The dial of the Senator is, as consistently with GO, produced in-house in a dial manufacturing plant situated in Pforzheim. It is something uncommon in the watchmaking business. Furthermore, taking a gander at the dial in detail, you comprehend that it bodes well. The outside of this smooth white dial has a marginally grained surface with completely characterized engravings. The sub-dials are orbited by a metallic casing, adding profundity and allure. A white and dark dial may appear to be genuinely fundamental to a few, however in this unique situation, it gives the best difference to neatness and simultaneously passes on a specific feeling of power. The matte and glowing dial implies that it tends to be utilized day and night. My lone concern is the Roman numerals at 12 and 6 o’clock… Simple rod would have been more significant, I think.

Display-wise, the GO is undeniably more complex. Positively, it figures out how to acquire different signs a symmetric and clean way. An astonishing component is the situation of the third sub-counter, at 12 o’clock, when it is normally situated at 6 o’clock on most chronograph watches… But this was never really space for the enormous Panorama Date. Notwithstanding that, it additionally includes a force hold sign and its chronograph combines 30-moment and 12-hour counters.

Conclusion: As much as I love the somberness of the IWC’s show, the magnificence of the textual styles and the reflections that its lustrous dial offer, when it comes down to settling on a goal decision, it is a reasonable success for the Glashütte Original. Not exclusively does the dial give great differentiation, however it is likewise luminous… More capacities without a doubt, yet this dial is playing in an alternate association with regards to execution. The accuracy of the printings, the subtleties in general, the extraordinary texture… I realize GO are pleased with assembling their dials in-house, and they ought to be!

Movements

This is the place where these two watches contrast most. While their “bodyworks” could feel rather rise to in plan and execution, with regards to what’s in the engine, significant contrasts are to be seen. Furthermore, that requires an explanation.

Back when the IWC was presented, in 1998, the thought of in-house developments was not at this point however significant as it seems to be today. A couple of super very good quality watchmakers were fabricating chronograph developments inside – you can peruse this article, it will give a complete outline of this particular theme. This was just 20 years prior however the standard was still to depend on Valjoux/ETA/Lemania/Dubois-Depraz for chronograph developments. IWC just presented its first in-house incorporated chronograph, the 89xxx arrangement, back in 2007. This clarifies the development found in the IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3714.

The key component to the general availability of the IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3714 lies in its moderately basic Caliber 79350. It depends on a Valjoux 7750 design. The words “based on” are critical here. Some may believe that IWC simply puts a basic Valjoux for the situation, however truth be told, the base development is widely modified, to meet with IWC’s standards.

First, the showcase is extraordinary; the 12-hour counter has been taken out and the little seconds sub-dial set at 6 o’clock (rather than 9 o’clock on a standard 7750), which suggests repositioning various cog wheels and prepares, adding pins and switches and making another baseplate. Additionally, the date component has been altogether taken out – no “apparition” position on the crown. At long last, the Caliber 79350 highlights 31 gems, rather than the 25 gems on a 7750 – proof of the multitude of alterations executed on the development. At long last, a portion of the parts have been moved up to a greater, explicitly the escapement, the equilibrium and the hairspring, to offer better chronometric results.

For every day use, the development of the IWC offers an exact sign of the time – despite the fact that not COSC-confirmed, albeit the model we have satisfied with the guidelines. The pushers offer, as consistently with the 7750 design, a powerful, extremely mechanical inclination – however not actually any noblesse.

On its part, Glashütte Original conveys its weighty big guns in its Senator Chronograph. In-house, coordinated, automatic, section wheel, flyback! Presented in 2014, the Caliber 37 is GO’s top-level chronograph motor (close to the hand-wound Panograph ) with current engineering, great improvement and format and different delicacies.

The development is amazingly planned, with half of the fundamental plate offering a view on the various pinion wheels and switches that compose the chronograph part of this development. The arrangements utilized are great: section wheel for the incitation of the capacities, bringing about the smooth activity of the pushers, a swaying pinion (rather than a flat or vertical grip) giving quick beginnings and improved precision, a flyback work and a force save of 70 hours. It likewise includes a Panorama Date, changed by the crown.

The sapphire caseback adds monstrous appeal to the watch with a view on the incredible beautification. This implies the customary Glashütte three-quarter plate, the swan-neck fine change, a skeletonized rotor with a 21k gold wavering weight adorned, alongside the scaffolds, with thick Glashütte ribbing, blued screws and slanted and cleaned edges.

Conclusion: No discussion! One point for the Glashütte here. Despite the fact that IWC utilizes incredible exertion in changing the Valjoux base to its guidelines, with various alterations and upgrades, it can’t beat the noblesse of GO’s Caliber 37. Period.

Now, this must be nuanced… The Caliber IWC 79350 development has a few points of interest over the Glashütte Original Caliber 37. To start with, it is more slender and in this way takes into account a sleeker watch. Then, as quite possibly the most created developments, it is not difficult to keep up and administration. At long last, it is reflected in the considerably lower price…

Strap/Buckle & comfort

The lashes found on the IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3714 and the Glashütte Original Senator Chronograph Panorama Date consummately characterize the livelihoods of each watch.

The IWC is furnished with a marginally more conventional crocodile lash. All things considered, on this blue adaptation, it is somewhat bolder than the exemplary dark leather found on the model with brilliant accents. Its shading isn’t uniform and looks marginally “washed” – more obscure on the fringe of the scales and lighter in the middle. Despite the fact that it isn’t created by Santoni, the nature of this tie is heavenly. Thick however not solid, it promptly embraces the wrist and needn’t bother with a variation period prior to becoming comfortable.

The lash comes with a pleasantly completed the process of collapsing catch, with brushed and cleaned surfaces. By and by, the execution is not kidding and strong. The fasten is likewise comfortable and well positioned.

The Glashütte Original plays on more easygoing notes. It is conveyed on a smooth calfskin earthy colored leather lash with off-white differentiating stitchings, adding somewhat of a vintage vibe to this watch. All things considered, it feels more end of the week than business. The nature of the lash is extraordinary; smooth to the touch and flexible on the wrist. It felt comfortable right out of the box.

Here as well, the GO is worn on a delightfully completed the process of collapsing fasten, with brushed and cleaned surfaces. The execution is not kidding and strong, on a standard with the remainder of the watch. The catch is comfortable and well positioned.

Conclusion: No victor here for the lash/clasp combo, as the two watches are similarly all around wrapped up. Nonetheless, there’s an alternate way of thinking in the decision of leather and shading, which mirrors the work of these watches. However, that is a completely abstract choice.

In terms of comfort, I’d say that it relies upon the size of the wearer’s wrist. Thinking about my little wrist, the IWC feels more fitting and better adjusted. Presently, for a man with a normal 18cm wrist, the two watches will offer incredible equilibrium and comfort.

Pricing

This is the significant purpose of conversation between these two watches. There’s a tremendous hole in cost between the IWC and the GO, which can’t be neglected in this review.

The IWC Portugieser Chronograph 3714 has a retail cost of EUR 7,600, whichever steel form you pick – ref. IW371445 silver-plated dial with brilliant records, ref. IW371446 silver-plated dial with blue records, ref. IW371447 dark dial with rhodium-plated records, or ref. IW371491 blue dial with rhodium-plated lists. It is broadly available.

The Glashütte Original Senator Chronograph Panorama Date in steel retails for EUR 13,200. It is accessible in different variants, with a white or dark dial, with a leather tie, an elastic tie or a steel bracelet.

Conclusion: The value distinction will apply a significant impact on the decision here… No discussion. In any case, the two costs appear to be reasonable, taking into account that the distinction can without much of a stretch be clarified by numerous elements, the fundamental one being the undeniably more complex development found in the Glashütte Original. Likewise, its dial is better executed and, by and large, there’s a superior sensation of value with the GO (just barely, though).

Conclusion

Let’s be straightforward, when you put the cost in the condition, this battle of white-dial automatic chronographs becomes considerably more complex. In this way, I’m going to make two conclusions.

First is my own, abstract take – so, the watch I would purchase myself… And it’s the IWC. Why? It comes down to two reasons, the previously dependent on esthetics. I for one love the stark, perfect and Germanic feel of the 3714 and its ageless allure. The reflections on the dial are extremely lovely and the state of the Arabic numerals, combined with the leaf-molded hands, have consistently pulled in me. Second, considering I have a more modest wrist, I think the IWC is a more shrewd decision, bringing about a more adjusted, more rich watch.

Now, in the event that I must be level headed, the Glashütte Original is, in numerous viewpoints, a superior watch. The development is playing in a very surprising class and the execution of the dial is above and beyond. The extra capacities (Panorama Date and force save) add some profundity to the content. The readability is just awesome, day and night… But the entirety of this comes at a value, which can’t be eliminated from the condition. In the event that spending plan isn’t a worry and in the event that you have a bigger wrist, the GO is the one to be considered.

If you’re on a more tight spending plan, or if you’re searching for a more conventional automatic chronograph with a more exemplary allure, the IWC won’t disillusion. With everything taken into account, both the IWC Portugieser and the Glashütte Original Senator Chronograph are amazing watches, from set up brands known for their great products.

And to end on an alternate note… What if, instead of the IWC 3714, we would have restricted the GO to the IWC Portugieser Chronograph Classique (ref. 3903 or 3904)? Realizing that this form includes an in-house, flyback, segment wheel, coordinated chronograph development, a 42mm case and retails for EUR 11,600… Or imagine a scenario where instead of the GO Senator, we would have chosen  the Sixties Chronograph , with its less difficult automatic and particular chronograph development, and a retail cost of EUR 7,900… In the two cases, the battle would have been considerably harder to decide!