Automatic vs Quartz Watches Compared

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Written By Logan Adler
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Are you curious about the durability of automatic vs. quartz watches? You’ve come to the right place.

What is the difference between quartz and automatic watches? What makes automatic watches last longer than quartz watches? Don’t worry, we got you.

In this article, we answer the following questions: 

In short, nothing beats investing in a long-lasting automatic watch created with high-quality materials and craftsmanship. Having said that, owning a quartz watch has its own set of benefits that make it an excellent choice as a timepiece or a stylish statement.

What is an Automatic watch?

To understand the origin of the automatic watch, you need to begin with mechanical watches. Mechanical do not require batteries to function, as they rely on a spring to drive a sequence of gears to keep time. That said, the wearer will have to wind the watch every so often, or it will stop working.

Manually winding the spring in a mechanical watch means the spring often experiences damage from wear and tear. This necessitates the attention of a skilled watchmaker to repair it from time to time.

At a certain point weighted gear and ball bearings were added to the watch mechanism, allowing it to wind itself using the wearer’s movements. Thus, the automatic watch was born.

When an automatic watch is worn continuously, the self-winding mechanism operates using energy the wearer generates by their natural motions. Automatic watches frequently include power reserves, which means they can store enough energy to keep the watch running for a specified amount of time.

The gears of automatic watches are often handcrafted by watch artisans, which makes them look beautiful. These tiny, intricate parts take a lot of time and effort to put together. Thus, affecting the cost of the watch. 

What Are The Pros of Automatic Watches?

Watchmakers meticulously construct automatic watches with considerable skill and craftsmanship to provide a stunning, complicated timepiece to the wearer’s wrist.

Fashion Piece

Automatic watch makers take pride in their craftsmanship. Some even offer an uncovered case back where the watch’s mechanical movements may be seen. They’re usually sold as an aesthetically pleasant addition to the wearer’s style, particularly appropriate as jewelry statement. Quartz watches can, of course, be magnificent works of art; it’s simply that automatic watches work for a different set of needs.


If properly cared for, automatic watches can survive generations. Often, families view them as investment heirlooms they will share with future generations. The key factors of automatic watch design are precision and accuracy. These watches function for a very long period of time. That is because when worn, they power themselves based on the wearer’s natural movements.

Higher Quality

One distinguishing feature of automatic watches is that the second hand moves numerous times per second. This gives the impression that it is sweeping across the watch display rather than ticking as it does in quartz watches. Mechanical movements drive automatic watches. These necessitate higher-quality materials and craftsmanship in order to keep the watch working smoothly for a longer period of time. The time, money, and effort put into a high-quality automatic watch pay off over time.

What is a Quartz watch?

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Not all watches are created equal. A quartz watch is a timepiece that uses an electronic oscillator regulated by a quartz crystal to keep time. This aids in the regulation of an electronic oscillator that generates a high-precision frequency signal.

Quartz watches generate their power from a battery and use an electrical mechanism to tell the time. A quartz crystal will vibrate at a consistent frequency when an electric current flows through it. Quartz clocks can keep time very accurately by employing this precise frequency to keep time.

Quartz watches, in general, are low-maintenance in that they only require batteries to keep running. Most batteries will wear out within three to five years, at which point you should replace them with fresh ones. Some quartz watches employ solar energy to generate power. This is great because it eliminates the need for traditional batteries.

Quartz movements account for the great majority of timepieces made each year. They are inexpensive to manufacture and have few moving parts.

What Are The Pros of Quartz Watches?

Let’s look at the advantages of owning a quartz watch now that we’ve covered both quartz and automatic watches.

Less expensive

The first and most obvious advantage of quartz watches is that they are usually less expensive than automatic watches. With fewer moving components and less manual labor in the production process, they are far easier to create than automated watches. Because they have fewer moving parts than automatic watches, they are also easier to maintain when necessary.

Low Maintenance

Quartz watches are low-maintenance, requiring simply a battery replacement every few years. Automatic watches, on the other hand, necessitate routine maintenance. Things such as mainspring replacements and mechanical part repairs due to wear and tear. While well-maintained automatic watches can last a lifetime or more, their self-winding mechanisms can eventually fail if they are not worn for an extended period of time.


Quartz crystal watches are more precise because the battery’s electric current vibrates the quartz crystal at a constant, consistent rate. Meanwhile, the movement of an automatic watch is affected by changes in the environment and the wearer’s physical motions. Eventually, you will need to adjust automatic to show the proper time. On the other hand, quartz watches will be able to survive the thumps, bumps, and stresses of everyday life.

What Are The Main Differences between Automatic And Quartz watches?

The obvious difference is that quartz watches have a quartz crystal that generates movement. Automatic watches have a self-winding mechanism that performs the same. Aside from that, they have additional distinguishing qualities.

Energy Source

Automatic watches are powered by kinetic energy stored in the mainspring of the movement mechanism. Quartz watches get their power from electricity. The majority of quartz watches obtain their power from a battery, although some can also harness their power from solar. The more functions a quartz watch has, the more energy it consumes and the shorter its battery life.

Because quartz watches are powered by electricity, the battery may be readily replaced. Features like compasses, electric lights, and stopwatches are available as add-ons. Automatic watches can also include additional features. These can be alarms and chronographs, etc. although they are far more complex to incorporate into the watch.

Time Variation

Automatic timepieces vary by a few seconds per day on average. While acceptable, the degree of variance depends on a variety of factors. These include daily activities, any shocks the watch may encounter, temperature, and the wearer’s resting position. Because the fluctuation in timekeeping is so minimal, quartz watches rarely encounter any variation. If they do, the difference is only visible after a long, long time.

Which one is more durable?

Although quartz watches require less upkeep, an automatic watch will last far longer. Quartz watches only require periodic battery changes to stay operational. However, internal components can fail due to maintenance errors, battery leakage, or static discharge.

Automatic watchmakers are careful to select materials that are high quality. They do this because it takes time and effort to creating a high-quality automatic watch. These materials can withstand a wide range of circumstances while still performing their job. An automated watch has an unlimited lifespan with proper maintenance and occasional part replacements, making it an excellent long-term investment.


Quartz watches are less expensive and require less care in general. This makes them an excellent choice for someone searching for a simple watch. An automatic watch is the way to go for someone wishing to invest in a well-crafted wrist piece that will last a lifetime.

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Logan Adler
I enjoy good bourbon, cool gear, and well-made clothing. When I'm not writing for The Bullfighter, you can catch me playing chess or practicing jiu-jitsu. Happy to connect on Instagram or drop me an email at

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