The Pros and Cons of Automatic Mechanical Watches: Is It Right for You?

Ismail Tasdelen
4 min readMay 31, 2023

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Photo by Lucas Santos on Unsplash

Watches have long been a symbol of style, elegance, and functionality. While many people now rely on their smartphones to check the time, there is still a strong appeal to wearing a watch on your wrist. Automatic mechanical watches, in particular, have gained popularity among watch enthusiasts and collectors. In this blog post, we will explore the pros and cons of automatic mechanical watches to help you decide if they are the right choice for you.

Part 1: Understanding Automatic Mechanical Watches Before delving into the pros and cons, it’s essential to understand what automatic mechanical watches are. Unlike their quartz counterparts, which are powered by batteries, automatic mechanical watches rely on a complex system of gears, springs, and a rotor that winds the mainspring. The natural motion of the wearer’s arm powers the watch, eliminating the need for manual winding or battery replacement.

Pros of Automatic Mechanical Watches:

  1. Craftsmanship and Artistry: One of the most significant advantages of automatic mechanical watches is the craftsmanship involved in their creation. These timepieces are meticulously crafted by skilled watchmakers who dedicate their expertise to designing and assembling intricate movements. From the delicate arrangement of gears to the precise calibration of the balance wheel, automatic mechanical watches showcase exceptional artistry and attention to detail.
  2. Longevity and Heritage: Automatic mechanical watches are known for their durability and longevity. The mechanical movement can last for decades with proper maintenance, making them a valuable investment for watch collectors. Additionally, many automatic mechanical watches come from esteemed watch brands with rich histories and legacies. Owning such a timepiece allows you to carry a piece of horological heritage on your wrist.
  3. Aesthetics and Variety: Automatic mechanical watches offer a wide range of styles, designs, and complications. From minimalist dress watches to intricate chronographs and perpetual calendars, there is a timepiece to suit every taste and occasion. These watches often feature beautifully designed dials, hands, and cases that add a touch of elegance and sophistication to your overall appearance.
  4. Environmental Friendliness: Unlike battery-powered watches that require regular battery replacements, automatic mechanical watches are environmentally friendly. By harnessing the wearer’s motion to power the watch, they eliminate the need for disposable batteries, reducing electronic waste and environmental impact.

Cons of Automatic Mechanical Watches:

  1. Higher Cost: One of the significant drawbacks of automatic mechanical watches is their higher cost compared to quartz watches. The intricate craftsmanship and premium materials used in their production contribute to their price tag. While there are affordable options available, luxury automatic mechanical watches can be quite expensive, making them less accessible to budget-conscious buyers.
  2. Accuracy and Precision: Automatic mechanical watches, although incredibly impressive in their mechanics, are not as accurate as quartz watches. They are generally expected to have a variation of a few seconds per day, whereas quartz watches are known for their precision. However, it’s worth noting that many mechanical watch enthusiasts appreciate the charm and character of timepieces that exhibit slight variations in timekeeping.
  3. Regular Maintenance: To keep an automatic mechanical watch in optimal working condition, regular maintenance is required. This includes periodic servicing, cleaning, and lubrication by professional watchmakers. These maintenance procedures can be costly and time-consuming, particularly for high-end watches. Additionally, wearing the watch infrequently or not winding it regularly can lead to the need for manual winding or restarting the watch.
  4. Vulnerability to Magnetism and Shock: Automatic mechanical watches are more susceptible to the effects of magnetism and shocks than their quartz counterparts. Exposure to strong magnetic fields can interfere with the precision of the movement, while sudden impacts or drops can damage delicate components. However, many watch manufacturers now incorporate anti-magnetic and shock-resistant features in their automatic mechanical watches to mitigate these risks.
Photo by Andy on Unsplash

Choosing a watch, whether automatic mechanical or quartz, ultimately depends on personal preferences and priorities. Automatic mechanical watches offer a blend of craftsmanship, style, and tradition that appeals to many watch enthusiasts. While they require more investment in terms of cost and maintenance, the unique charm and longevity they provide make them a worthy choice for those who appreciate the art of watchmaking. Consider the pros and cons discussed in this blog post to determine if an automatic mechanical watch is the right fit for you.

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Ismail Tasdelen

I'm Ismail Tasdelen. I have been working in the cyber security industry for +7 years. Don't forget to follow and applaud to support my content.