Does the urban lifestyle justify the use of a chronograph? Well the Bell & Ross BR 05 Chrono makes some valid points for it.

Intrepid explorers of the great outdoors certainly employed it to its fullest extent. However, what about those who inhabit the “concrete jungle”? True: the trappings of civilisation may have removed much of life’s guess work. However, time has always been the one constant that eludes absolute control. We grasp at it, if for nothing else than to reassure ourselves that we are still capable of doing so.

Reading and measuring time

Bell & Ross’ BR 05 Chrono may just well be the perfect tool for that. The brand’s latest offering adds a bona fide chronograph to the collection’s iconic “circle in a square” timepiece. This adds an additional layer of utility to an already impressive tool watch. Four exposed screws – each positioned at the corners of the bezel – accentuates the 42-millimetre steel case’s muscular profile. Meanwhile, two sub-dials – 30-minute counter at 9 o’clock and running seconds at 3 o’clock – adorn the black sunray dial. There is little doubt with regard to the legibility of the timepiece. The combination of bold Arabic numerals and hour indices, and a contrasting grey minute track surrounding the sub-dials creates enough visual arrest to inform without being disruptive.

The added presence of chronograph pushers is sometimes a cause for concern. This is because the protrusion can cause a small amount of discomfort against the wrist. However, the pushers (along with the crown and the crown guard) of the BR 05 Chrono form a single cohesive piece. This piece is then incorporated into the side of the case. Not only does this create a more balanced top-down perspective, but it also reduces the longitudinal bulk of the watch for more comfortable wear.

A modern classic

Adding to the streamlined nature of the Bell & Ross BR 05 Chrono is the presence of an integrated bracelet design. Whether on a steel bracelet or rubber strap, both options flow seamlessly into the case. The links of the bracelet, aside from being emblematic of the BR 05 Chrono’s case shape, also conform to the natural contours of the wrist. This gives the bracelet a level of wearability that rivals that of its rubberised counterpart.

Returning to the case, a combination of both satin-finished and polished surfaces lends contrast and adds dimension to the otherwise stoic aesthetic of the BR 05 Chrono. The stepped bezel tightens the focus on the dial, which also comes with an anti-reflective sapphire crystal. Combined with the integrated bracelet, the BR 05 Chrono stands as a very modern interpretation of a classic explorer’s timepiece, bolstered by the undeniable functionality of a mechanical chronograph.

The BR 05 Chrono is available in two options: Black Steel (black dial) and Blue Steel (blue dial). Both options are paired with either a steel bracelet or a matching coloured rubber strap.

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