In this issue of ‘You know that,’ We consider the difference between a Modular and integrated movement, Each represents one of two different approaches to incorporating a complication into a watch.
Difference between modular and integrated movement
with a Modular movement, an additional complication is built on top of an otherwise stand-alone timekeeping mechanism. By itself, the module does not work and must instead be attached to the base movement to power it. Here, we immediately have the advantage of modular movement. A brand can make or buy automatic or manual wind movements that only tell time and can make or buy different modules to put on them. It is a relatively cost-effective way to provide a collection of varying complexity.
The purists among us are often in favor Integrated movement. Here, there is no module, but the caliber is designed to have this complication from the start. This means that there is only one main plate in the entire movement, and the complication is a critical part of the entire movement.
Although more complicated to do, integrated movements come with some advantages. Because the complication is integrated inside the caliber and not stacked like a module on top of it, they are often thinner. Developing them is an expensive business, as it results in a single movement that has one or more complications, but is not otherwise used. That’s why it’s mainly expensive, high-end brands that create integrated movements.
The difference between the two approaches is often distinguished from the outside. Because the module is placed on top, the watch’s crown is placed a little lower than you’d normally expect. With modular chronographs, you’ll see the pushers mounted higher than the crown, similar to the correctors of more complex modular calendar watches. Another article may date. When the base movement comes with a date function, it is sometimes performed. On the dial side, you can see that it is much deeper than the dial, which some brands try to mediate by putting a small magnifying glass on it.
While integrated movements are very attractive, modular movements have also earned their place in watchmaking history. Because they cost more to manufacture, complications become more accessible to a larger number of watch enthusiasts. They also offer flexibility to brands that don’t necessarily conflict with their uniqueness. Some order modules from specialized suppliers that fit on top of their manufacturing moves or manufacture their own. Others prefer a different approach and may purchase a reliable base movement, but design their own module to give them a competitive advantage that has a more unique complication. Any and all avenues lead to a rich world of watches where watch lovers can make their own choices based on preferences and budget.
What type of movement do you prefer, integrated or modular? Let us know in the comments below!