COSC...... overrated?
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  1. #1
    Member eliz's Avatar
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    COSC...... overrated?

    So I've seen the guys debating about COSC in the "Luxury Divers" thread, which got me thinking..

    Is COSC overrated in your eyes?
    Is it just another way for companies like Rolex, Omega & Breitling or even Tissot and Mido to charge a premium to watches that possess this additional piece of paper?

    I mean come on.. I've heard tons of people saying that their non-COSC watches(including my Nomos) run well within COSC standards.
    At the same time, I've also heard tons of people complain their "I-paid-more-because-it's-COSC-certified" watches not run within the certified range.

    Now tell me.. is "Officially Chronometer Certified" really worthy of the big hoo-haa it gets?
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  2. #2
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    I think so. Better components, better average accurancy. Yes, some forumers claim their low grade movement runs better than COSC, but that is an observation of the average.
    If a movement does +-30 seconds/day, then the average under optimal conditions is Zero secs/day.

    For me, COSC on a modern watch should be the minimum.

    Not that I ever need such accurancy, but I like to know it is accurate.

  3. #3
    Member American Eagle's Avatar
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    COSC was formed because in the 1960's Seiko sent watches to Switzerland to get chronometer certifications, and their accuracy was so superior that it embarrassed the Swiss because they had nothing that could compare. Their solution, exclude the non-Swiss companies by creating a chronometer regulations body (COSC) that excluded non-Swiss watches from ever getting the chronometer certification.

    COSC is overrated. Your standard ETA Elabore and ETA Top Grade movements pretty much almost always fall within COSC standards. In most cases, the difference between your $5,000 certified watch and my $900 Swiss watch is that yours has a certificate from COSC while mine doesn't, but chances are good that both pretty much have the same movement inside (a mid or high grade ETA movement) and keep time just as equally good.
    Last edited by American Eagle; January 9th, 2013 at 16:23.
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  5. #4
    Member eliz's Avatar
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    Should being within COSC standards be the minimum OR should coming with a COSC certification be the minimum?

    Quote Originally Posted by Janne View Post
    I think so. Better components, better average accurancy. Yes, some forumers claim their low grade movement runs better than COSC, but that is an observation of the average.
    If a movement does +-30 seconds/day, then the average under optimal conditions is Zero secs/day.

    For me, COSC on a modern watch should be the minimum.

    Not that I ever need such accurancy, but I like to know it is accurate.
    MZhammer likes this.
    ROLEX Datejust 36mm Blueberry;
    ROLEX Pepsi GMT-Master 16700 (Circa 1987);
    ZENITH El Primero 36'000 VPH Tri-Color;
    SEIKO Prospex Solar Tuna SBDN026 (1981/3000)

    Considerations:
    AUDEMARS PIGUET Royal Oak 15450
    A.LANGE & SOHNE Saxonia Thin 37mm

    Instagram: Horodiziac

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    COSC...... overrated?

    COSC is only overrated when a nonCOSC watch/movement is properly adjusted to similar specs (ex. Nomos and Seiko).

    Unfortunately the majority of companies that do not seek COSC will be lazy and drop a off the shelf movement into a case with very little timing and adjustment.


  7. #6
    Haf
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    Quote Originally Posted by eliz View Post
    Should being within COSC standards be the minimum OR should coming with a COSC certification be the minimum?
    COSC certificate would be nice, if it doesn't add too much to the MSRP. The certificate is not a true guarantee that a watch would run accurately, but in this respect it is merely a starting point.

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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    I don't think it is overrated - it simply is what it is - a representation that the movement was tested by an independent party and found to operate within defined criteria. I don't routinely come across people saying they are willing to pay significantly more for a watch because it is certified.

    What I like about the certification is the implicit guarantee (by virtue of slapping "chronometer" on the dial) that the movement will still perform within those defined criteria at the point of sale. If your non-COSC watch arrives running at +12 - and you find that unsattisfactory - the manufacturer may or may not be inclined to adjust the timing at their expense.
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  9. #8
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    Waldoh, yes...I suspect most automatic and mechanical movements can be made to run within COSC standards if properly adjusted...but they do have to get adjusted (as you mentioned.) Though I will add that I've had some good experiences with unadjusted movements too (and find nothing wrong with them.)

    However, in the case of ETA movements (which most Swiss watchmakers use) most of them are adjusted. I find that the ETA Elabore (which are adjusted to 3 positions) almost always run within COSC standards (even if most are never sent to get COSC certification,) and there are companies that use the ETA Top Grade movements, and don't get them certified even though they pretty much all run within COSC standards. Therefore, I do not see COSC as being a plus if you are buying a watch with an ETA Elabore or Top Grade movement. You are most likely paying extra for a sales gimmick (the certification) at that point as there is probably no difference in accuracy between your extremely expensive COSC certified watch and a much cheaper alternative.
    Last edited by American Eagle; January 9th, 2013 at 16:52.
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  10. #9
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    Fact is it does add quite a significant bit to the MSRP. Also, COSC only tests the movement before it gets assembled into the case. Which means it still has to be shipped back to it's manufacturer and be subjected to further steps of watch assembly. With that, how sure are you that the COSC certification will still be accurate after all that?

    BUT if we're talking about the German's way of COSC certification with a fully assembled watch.. now that's a different story altogether.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haf View Post
    COSC certificate would be nice, if it doesn't add too much to the MSRP. The certificate is not a true guarantee that a watch would run accurately, but in this respect it is merely a starting point.
    Last edited by eliz; January 9th, 2013 at 16:44.
    ROLEX Datejust 36mm Blueberry;
    ROLEX Pepsi GMT-Master 16700 (Circa 1987);
    ZENITH El Primero 36'000 VPH Tri-Color;
    SEIKO Prospex Solar Tuna SBDN026 (1981/3000)

    Considerations:
    AUDEMARS PIGUET Royal Oak 15450
    A.LANGE & SOHNE Saxonia Thin 37mm

    Instagram: Horodiziac

  11. #10
    Haf
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    Re: COSC...... overrated?

    Quote Originally Posted by eliz View Post
    BUT if we're talking about the German's way of COSC certification with a fully assembled watch.. now that's a different story altogether.
    From what I know, some of the better Seikos are also treated this way, after all, the end-user buys a watch, not a movement thrown into a case.
    Last edited by Haf; January 9th, 2013 at 16:46.

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