The New Master Chronograph or the Return of true values.

Jan 25, 2010,14:42 PM

JLC releases, this year 2 very important watches, in my opinion:

The Master Memovox, and this Master Chronograph.

We'll later see the new Memovox, or should I use the plural, as they are 2.

But the Chronograph and the Memovox play the card of some cardinal virtues:

Elegance, Classicism, Small size, and Affordability.

Here, no " fioritures " ( frills, in English(?) but it is more " chic " in French ), just a nice return to the fundamentals.

While JLC offers a wide range of Chronographs, Sporty ( Amvox / Compressor ), refined ( Duometre ), there was a blank, a gap, now filled with this Master Chronograph.

Affordability doesn't mean that some compromises have been made on the quality and the finish.

I speak, I speak, but you didn't see any pictures, yet...So let's see the Beast " in vivo "...


This new Chrono is avalaible in Stainless Steel or in Rose Gold:

Don't you have the feeling that it's a piece coming from the Past?

Obviously, JLC opted for a retro look:

Nice applied triangular and thin indexes, sublime Dauphine hands, small applied " 12 ", small case ( 40 mm ), rectangular chrono pushers, and great crown...This watch reveals its qualities at the first look.

One detail I didn't observe immediately...The Chrono hands ( Hour, Minute and Second )...

They are all heated blue, while the Time Hands are in Rose Gold ( for the RG version ) or in SS ( matching with the SS case ).

It seems that the Duomètre à Chronographe inspired the JLC design Department on this watch, as there is a clear and brilliant separation between the Time and the Chronograph informations, which I like a lot.

The overall volumes of this Chronograph contribute to its elegance.

The case is relatively thin, as it is only 12, 6 mm thick.

The Chrono borrowed the new Master Hometime case, with thinner lugs and a slimmer bezel.

Elegance is nothing without reliability, and in this case, the movement housed into the Master Chrono is well known: The Cal 751 A, which is a traditional 751 with some minor changes on its structure.

Now, the discussion moment...

Solid or see through case back?

The answer is....


I know that some here dreamt about a sapphire case back, but objectively, I think that JLC made the right choice.

Do you remember what were the global thoughts on the Grande Reversso 976, with its sapphire case back?

Everybody wanted a solid case back!

What is to be seen with the Cal 751 A?

It is a good and reliable movement, but is it that interesting to see?

Does JLC have to fall in the Trap of Fashion?

This is a serious piece, IMO, which deserves serious solutions.

The case back is a serious solution.

It would have been totally different if the housed caliber was a superbly finished one.

At least we can admire the very nice new Logo we'll also see on the new Memovox, Logo inspired from the Geomatic / Geophysic.

Affordable, this Chrono is:

In SS, it is around 7900 Euros, while in RG, it is approximlatively 15 000 Euros.

Do you have a problem to decide between the SS and the RG version?

The RG is warmer, indeed, while the SS is more ...understated.

For those who can't decide between these 2 versions, I may be of some help...

Open your eyes, as it is a scoop...

JLC showed me the Boutique Edition, which is a LE of 150 pieces: Basically a SS Case, silver dial, BUT RG Indexes and Time Hands.

In this configuration, the Retro look is enhanced in a very lovely way...

Don't thank me, Temptation is my pleasure.



Nicolas This message has been edited by amanico on 2010-01-25 14:43:06 This message has been edited by amanico on 2010-01-28 12:57:44

More posts: Amvox1 AlarmDuometreDuometre ChronographeGeophysicMaster HometimeMaster MemovoxMemovox

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**** me..................its GORGEOUS [nt]

 By: Miranda : January 25th, 2010-14:52
No message body

I understand your enthusiasm, Imran...

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-13:51
Good to hear from you, my friend! Best, Nicolas

This is the review I was waiting for...

 By: emcquillan : January 25th, 2010-15:09
Thank you very much Nicloas. I have been waiting for Jaeger to produce an elegant chrono in the master collection. I love the porportions. 40 x 12.6 with those beautiful lugs appears to be the perfect size. I can't wait to see them in the metal. Now, how ... 

You don't have a JLC Boutique in Canada?

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-13:54
Or at least a big AD who can provide it to you? Or you can contact any other JLC Boutique, and if in Europa, you may detax it... Like you, I think this Chrono will be a big hit, for JLC. A charmful piece. Best, my friend. Nicolas

RE: (jlc) The New Master Chronograph or the Return of true values

 By: val : January 25th, 2010-16:12
nicolas: as always, a fantastic post. thanks very much. best, val

Thank You Nicholas!

 By: Robert206 : January 25th, 2010-16:15
Thank you for the report and beautiful pictures. This new model is a truly stunning surprise. I've posted a number of complaints on the other popular JLC forum regarding a lack of taste in design coming from the firm in the past few years (with a few nota... 

Well, Robert, I'm one of these weird guys

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-14:00
Who can appreciate these classic pieces, and at the same time some more audacious ones... I'm very happy to see Classics like the Chrono, the Memovox, and the Duomètre, not to mention the MGT Grande Complication, indeed. Please, wait for the Memovox post,... 

You are not werid Nicolas, strange but not weird ;-) LOL

 By: rwk : January 27th, 2010-04:51
You are also too funny! Best my friend, -- Richard.

Agreed - an attractive design need not be conservative

 By: Robert206 : January 27th, 2010-14:30
merely well, thought out and executed. The original Amvox2 in Titanium/Steel is one of my favorite JLCs of the past decade or so, as is the Diver Chrono, despite what I might think would be better judgment. I love them both.

didn't need your help

 By: sancerre : January 25th, 2010-18:49
I was immediately smitten by this new chronograph, and your quick presentation has done nothing to dampen my interest. Merci bien Nicolas

Thanks for the wonderful review...

 By: Goh : January 25th, 2010-21:24
May I ask if there is a bracelet for the steel version? Goh

I should have think about it...

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-14:03
I will have to ask, my friend! Sorry. Best, Nicolas

No problem.

 By: Goh : January 26th, 2010-15:35
Thanks, Goh

Well, Goh

 By: amanico : January 27th, 2010-13:49
I have a first information, which needs to be confirmed, but it seems that for the moment, a bracelet won't work on the new Chrono, as well as on the Memovox. Will have a confirmation of this information in a week, and will come back to you. Best, Nicolas

Many thanks Nicolas...

 By: Goh : January 28th, 2010-07:00
...for checking, but I hope that your confirmation provides a different answer. Best, Goh

I just received an email from my contact at the Manufacture

 By: amanico : January 28th, 2010-07:03
AND.... ..... The SS Bracelet is available as an option! Best Nicolas


 By: Goh : January 30th, 2010-06:41
Thanks Nicolas for the information. The 'normal' version in SS with the heated blue hands would be my choice, along with the Master Memovox or Memovox Int'l. It is unfortunate that I was rejected for the forth-coming preview of the SIHH 2010 collections i... 

Hopefully, it won't take long before you can see them in the flesh, Goh

 By: amanico : January 30th, 2010-07:42
Too sad you were rejected... I don't get it, seriously. Let us know! Best, Nicolas

I don't understand as well...

 By: Goh : January 31st, 2010-06:08
I reponded positively on the same day I received the inviation from JLC, but was told that there are no more opening. Guess the responses must be too overwhelming. Best, Goh

Lovely, Lovely, Lovely...

 By: nikolaj : January 25th, 2010-22:31
All three of them! I love the proportions and the dial lay-out and - whereas I would have been of a different opinion a few years back - I fully approve of the solid caseback on these pieces. I must give seperate praise of the chrono hands: Heat blued! I ... 

The heated blue hands on the Chrono are just a great idea, indeed.

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-14:07
It is an important feature, IMO, on this Chrono. To separate in a clear way the Time and the Chrono is so great. This is a lovely piece, and I'm pretty sure it will be a hit for any Chrono Lover. Best, Nicolas This message has been edited by amanico on 20... 

Very nice

 By: foullis : January 26th, 2010-00:19
Thank you the report Nicolas. Very nice, perfect robust/simply ballance. It looks like good for everyday wearing. Beauty hands, dial. SS case better for my taste... Cheers, Milan This message has been edited by foullis on 2010-01-26 00:21:06

Thanks, Milan!

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-22:21

LOVE the boutique dial!!! My only wish...

 By: watchme : January 26th, 2010-04:56
is that JLC would have opted for a hinged caseback, "in the grand tradition." My guess is that JLC never opted for an exhibition back on the 75X series because of all the controversy surrounding its resemblance to another wonderful chronograph produced "d... 

Yep, hinged caseback

 By: Velociphile - No longer in the building : January 26th, 2010-13:10
would solve it and it would be ok as I think the Piguet stains are less obvious 'balance wheel side' anyway. Great to see a return to a narrow bezel and a more classic feel, but that date is surely clunky and their choice of font remains regretful. A no-b... 

Now that I think about it, I'd also loved to have a black dial.

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-22:26
I'm sure that all these versions will find their fans, and that there is a place for some ruthenium or black dials, too... Like you, I was stunned by this Boutique Edition dial. The hinged case back would have been a very nice solution, indeed! Best, Nico... 

Instant classic

 By: AT : January 26th, 2010-05:03
I am really impressed, this looks like a watch for the long run. Love the rectangular chrono pushers and the overall balanced feel of the watch. This is the kind of watch you'd give for someone graduating or getting married and that represents the right v... 

Thank you Nicolas

 By: Dje : January 26th, 2010-05:31
Hi, A very nice piece indeed! Is the pulsometer scale revealing anything about its positioning? I'm very happy to see plain backs come back! Cheers Dje

Yep, Jerome, the Pulsometer scale is another nice detail

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-22:43
About its Vintage positioning... Best, my friend. Nicolas

Absolute winner IMO

 By: Starman : January 26th, 2010-06:07
Yes Nicolas, I think I fell in love with this watch the moment I saw it on the JLC website. I considered the Master Hometime a year ago, but went for the RDM. I felt there was something missing in the new Hometime dial. But everything else was superb; 40 ...  

Hi, Starman

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-22:55
When I first saw the noew Honetime, I was hoping that JLC adopts this case for their new releases, and that's what they're doing, now, with this new Master Chrono and the new Memovox. So, the case is an excellent point, IMO. The case back is not a big dea... 

I think

 By: Quan : January 26th, 2010-06:18
it will be nicer w/o the date. I like the LE silver dial, thanks Nic

can't believer thar "temptation is your pleasure"....

 By: Stefan : January 26th, 2010-06:34
.... Nico. you are a bad boy again! by the way, i like the SS case with silver dial and RG Indexes and time hands. they are perfectly matched. stefan

THX Amanico

 By: nikolo FR : January 26th, 2010-07:06
It's really beautiful. I really love the retro look. The dauphine's hand are wonderful. So simple, so perfect. I agree the solid back, better than showinf a 976 like movement... A bit expensive maybe.. And i wonder why they put luminous dots at 3 and 9 ..... 

Hey, Nicolas...Great to read you!

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:07
2 things: 1/ Is it expensive? Compared to the Competitors offer, it is not the most expensive, nor the less, so this is a subjective matter. Let's say that for all the qualities of this model and for all its " virtues ", I think that it is correctly rated... 

Thanks for

 By: damien : January 26th, 2010-07:52
another of your tireless reviews, Nicholas. I have to admit that the Master Chrono was initially one the biggest disappointments IMO from JLC this year when I first read the SIHH 2010 news. I suspect many of us have been waiting for a classic chrono with ... 

Well, Damian, it is difficult to do more " Classic " with this Chrono

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:12
Don't you think? The nicely reworked case, the understated dial ( normal versions ) or vintage one ( Boutique Edition ), the solid case back, all these elements are referring to a Classic Time piece, IMO. One point I agree...A Blue Pulsometer scale would ... 

Great !

 By: cisco : January 26th, 2010-10:04
Great photos, great review and great watch ! A classical and affordable new chronograph, that didn't happen for years ! Good Job, thanks JLC Best regards Francois

My thoughts.....

 By: PinkPanther : January 26th, 2010-11:12
Thank you Nicolas for a great review..... A well designed watch but I do have some doubts whether this will be a successful one for JLC.... A very solid & retro design that does "hit" the heart of watch lovers..... a classic dial and a Jaeger craftsmanshi... 

Interesting point about the JLC DNA.

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:24
If you " dive " into the JLC History, you will find, here again some inspiration from the " La Grande Maison " Past. Till now, JLC didn't go on this ground, at the notable exception of the Duomètre... But the Duometre is another league, in terms of s... 

The boutique edn ROCKS IMO!

 By: matrix : January 26th, 2010-11:18
I normally am not a big fan of RG, but this combo works for me. Any idea on the price N?! Thx in advance my friend and B well, Matrix.

Same price than the regular SS Chrono, Matrix.

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:26
Isn't this excellent news? Thanks for your comments, Matrix. Best, Nicolas


 By: Patrick  : January 26th, 2010-11:30
Great review, thank you Nicolas. The watch is awesome and I like the engraved back, but it would appear that the gold seal is indeed a thing of the past. Not particularly bothersome, but a change all the same. Best, -P

About the case back

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:30
What I love is the reference to the Geophysic Logo, which was born in 1958... In a certain way, a nice " clin d'oeil ", don't you think? Thanks for your nice words, Patrick. Best, Nicolas


 By: Patrick  : January 27th, 2010-12:52
A very nice tie to the past in a year with the return of many classic elements. Best, -P

About that date...

 By: tee530 : January 26th, 2010-11:39
Nicolas - I'll add my thanks, despite your disclaimer. This is a beautiful watch, and a very worthy addition to the Master control line. JLC made the right choices with the size and the materials, IMO. The LE is my favorite. But that date window seems awk... 

Interesting comment on the angled date...

 By: nikolaj : January 26th, 2010-14:49
your comment had me wondering if the dial wouldn't be more pleasing to the eye if the date wasn't angled... hhmmm a quick and dirty shot at photo manipulation: IMHO it is more pleasing with a non-angled date. I believe this would have been easy enough to ...  

About the Date...

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-22:18
If I remember well one conversation with Magali last year, she told me that the Cal 75X always has a date located at 4.30. So, if you use such a Cal, you can't modifiy the location of the Date. And indeed, if you look at the EWC, the Amvox II, or the MC D... 

An absolute marvel

 By: Maverik : January 27th, 2010-01:04
JLC did a very good job this new marvel. Thanks for the great review. How is the legability of the dials on the normal version? In the photo the silver on silver looks a bit hard to see. For that reason the Boutique edition seems to be the winner. As for ... 

Hi, Rik

 By: amanico : January 27th, 2010-03:57
To me, the legibility is not questionnable, on the SS normal version. I guess the choice between the normal and the Boutique Edition will depend on everybody's taste. Some will prefer the understated normal Chrono, others will better consider the Boutique... 

I completely agree...

 By: nikolaj : January 28th, 2010-00:05
That no lay-out can please everybody. Date or no-date, I am not so picky, but I must agree with some here that the angled date window stands out more on this relatively clean dial (compared to say the Amvox2). From a theoretical perspective, would it not ... 

To date or not to date?

 By: stromer : January 28th, 2010-08:51
I am very late to chime in but it took me a while to make up my mind about the new Master Chronograph. And even if you may not want to hear it any more it has something to do with the date display. In general I am very pleased with the way JLC filled the ...  

Hi, Tom

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:31
I answered just below Nikolaj's answer, my friend. Thanks for your nice words! Best, Nicolas

Very impressive pics my friend ...

 By: p@trice : January 26th, 2010-13:22
I am very happy that JLC offers us a chronograph in the range master, it is a superb watch ! Thanks for sharing Nicolas Best Patrice

Really thanks, Nicolas.

 By: E.J. : January 26th, 2010-14:06
Nice review and awesome pics. I must admit that, when I´ve seen the first pic, a watch came into my mind.... the Duometre! Then, when I´ve continue reading your post I´ve seen that you made mention about it... By the way, an impressive, elegant, beautiful... 


 By: bimbeano : January 26th, 2010-14:50
Nice .... what's more to say, it is just a very no-nonsense, pure design. Doesn't it make one think of a VC chronograph or am i wrong here? Anyway, the caseback is crazy too and my favorite would be the SS. JLC has really done some beautifull things latel... 

It mostly makes me think to a nice Vintage piece

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:35
In a modern construction... A kind of " Best of both worlds "... Tha,nks for your input, Filip! Best, Nicolas

great classic design, reminds me of this:

 By: scott7 : January 27th, 2010-12:43
Thank you for the great photos and review Nicholas. This chronograph looks almost exactly like the Wempe Zeitmeister chronograph, but with the Hometime case and JLC quality, can't imagine how one could find a nicer chronograph for the price. Thanks, Scott

Aesthetics is one thing, quality is more objective, indeed.

 By: amanico : January 27th, 2010-13:47
And you're absolutely right...This Chrono is " sweating " Quality. Thanks for your input, Scott. Best, Nicolas

Many think of JLC as..

 By: moc : January 26th, 2010-15:15
a big mish mash of dozens and dozens of models going from the most affordable reverso to the Gyro.A big pot where the Maison seems to discriminate and make money from the most commercial numbers in its collection(Reversos,master control etc..) in order to... 

With this collection, I think that JLC is in the good way, indeed.

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:40
From the " simple " to the most complicated, from the Classic to the Modern and Innovative, JLC seems to happily fill the blanks and to play its partition with a certain happyness. What they're doing for several years now, with an evident regularity, is j... 

Truly an elegant and ...

 By: nwp627 : January 26th, 2010-17:40
refined rendition of a chronograph. The RG is beautiful and I hear it calling my name. Thank you Nicolas for this wonderful temptation. N

Very nice pieces,

 By: Watchlover78 : January 26th, 2010-18:25
As always, thank you for the information! Best regards, Baxter

Very nice indeed.

 By: Davo : January 26th, 2010-21:11
Modern classics. I really like the Boutique Edition. They did a great job on that one.

It would indeed be a nice addition in your great collection, my friend.

 By: amanico : January 26th, 2010-23:46
This message has been edited by amanico on 2010-01-26 23:46:52

Date aperture kills it for me.

 By: vitalsigns : January 27th, 2010-14:12
Maybe they'll sell more, but IMO, this will never be a classic JLC. It is a shame as I was salivating for a master chronograph, a notable omission from the lineup. John

As I said, John,

 By: amanico : January 27th, 2010-14:30
It may be a problem for some, not for others, but one thing is sure, with the 75X, it is not possible to put the date at another place... Heve a look at trhe Memovox, I will post it next week. Best, and thanks for sharing your thoughts. Nicolas

Hi Nicolas

 By: vitalsigns : January 27th, 2010-16:03
Right, I understand that the date cannot be shifted without significant re-working, but my strong preference would be to omit the date entirely, which presumably would require much less re-working and IMO would have given it a much more classic look. The ... 

For me,too, John ...

 By: amanico : January 27th, 2010-22:53
I would have preferred without date... But it doesn't bother me that much. Best, Nicolas

Well, first of all...

 By: dxboon : January 29th, 2010-21:31
...EVERYTHING is more chic in French, n'est-ce pas ? I think this new chrono is a great offering from JLC. A wonderful throwback, full of charm, IMO. I do slightly regret the date window, but for me it's not necessarily a deal-breaker for this piece. The ... 

LOL, Daos...

 By: amanico : January 30th, 2010-07:40
I think that after a while you tend to forget the presence of this Date Window on the dial... That was, at least, my impression after a while. Well, as you have your permanent entrance at the BH Boutique, it won't be too difficult for you to get one, IF y... 

Wonderful post Nicolas!

 By: bill2016 : January 31st, 2010-05:48
I agree, a superb watch. I feel it really fills a gap in the JLC line - a chrono in the Master Control range. It also fills a gap I feel missing in the watch market - a dressy chrono made by a top tier manufacture that is still reasonably priced - the onl... 

JLC will certainly happy to read you, Bill

 By: amanico : January 31st, 2010-09:44
As I wrote it, to me it is an excellent thing for JLC and for their fans to go ALSO this way, and to release some Classics. I hope we'll have other, many other examples! Best, Nicolas

Date? Yes!

 By: fcwatch : February 5th, 2010-21:22
Hi guys! first I would like to congratulate this dedicated website and everyone who contribute to this great experience! Over the years I've collected many pieces myself and I have to say: such chronograph will not be appealing if it hadn't had a date! A ... 

Wow, what a first enthusiastic post, FC.

 By: amanico : February 5th, 2010-22:29
What you say about the Date is interesting...I always wondered why people absolutely wanted a date on some watches. But some may also wonder why I am so nut about Alarm watches. To each his own... Thanks for your input, ans Welcome here! Looking forward t... 

Thank You

 By: fcwatch : February 6th, 2010-22:27
Thanks a lot, Nicolas! It is an absolute pleasure to join this community! I will try to input as much I can, as well as learn and absorb as much as I can from you all. It is interesting how you mentioned alarm, since it is one of my favorite complications...