VC Chronometre Royal 86122 or Richard Lange's 232.032

I would like to get some feedback on the Vacheron Constantin Chronometre Royal 86122 and the A. Lange & Sohne, Richard Lange Ref# 232.032?  I am curious as to what your opinions are on these two wristwatches and which one you would choose out of the two.  I also understand that none of the German Watches does a COSC like testing except Wempe Watches, and that Germany doesn't have a COSC like testing site like Switzerland does.  I am not sure how important it is or not?  

there are a few Chronometre Royal owners here so they can chip in, the
02/05/2008 - 11:24

most important is for you to see and hold both before making your decision. The Richard Lange and the Chronometre Royal have the same target: precision timekeeping. The Chronometre Royal being a modern reinterpretation of VC's pocket watches launched in 1907 and the Richard Lange being a modern reinterpretation of the deck chronometers used in balloons and Zeppelins but apart from that they are very different!

The Chronometre Royal exists only in rose gold whereas with the Richard Lange you have more choices as it is available in RG, YG and platinum.

The Chronometre Royal is automatic wind and the Richard Lange is manual wind. It is important to note that the caliber used in the Richard Lange was made specially for this watch whereas the cal 2560 in the Chronometre Royal is a base caliber used by VC in its other automatic winding watches but uped to Chronometric standards. However the Richard Lange is a new collection within Lange and the new models will use the existing caliber or evolutions thereof.

A Lounger who had posted about his Chronometre Royal a few months ago stated that the watch had gained 1 second in 2 weeks which is exceptional!!

In terms of design the Lange is a rather austere timepiece which breathes of quality and engeneering. The VC is a much more flamboyant and playful timepiece.

Finally it also depends if you lile Roman numerals and silver dial (Lange) or Arabics and enamel (VC)

The Chronometre Royal will be made in about 100 pieces each year which will obviously make it a bit more difficult to obtain.

As for COSC certification I think that it is rather unimortant considering that COSC certifies an uncased movement only at a certain time. I consider the re-testing done by VC once the watch is recased much more important.

The Richard Lange is not COSC certified because I believe that COSC only certifies Swiss movements. Wempe has set up an Observatory in Glashutte which will be able to deliver chronometer certificates (not sure if it is operational as of today) but I am certain that the watchmakers at Lange have set the Richard Lange in a way that it could pass COSC trials with absolutely no difficulties.

At the end it all comes down to your taste and budget (I believe the Chonometre Royal has a higher price tag than the Richard Lange)

Another solution would be looking for a vintage VC Chronometre Royal, fantastic watches which can still be found at reasonable prices.

From a Chronometre Royal owner...
02/05/2008 - 14:46

First of all they are both beuatiful watches and both have exquisite movements and finishings.  So whichever you choose, I think you would be very happy. 

I have had the Chronometre Royal for about a month now and absolutely love it.  I still enjoy admiring it on my wrist and catching all the details through a loupe.  A few things stand out for me about the Chronometre Royal over the Lange. I love the white enamel dial.  Knowing the process that each dial goes through and the difficulty of obtaining a perfect enamel dial makes me appreciate the dial each time I look at it.  I also prefer the arabic numerals to the roman.  To me, the Roman looks too serious, too defined, and very rigid.  The arabic dials on the Royal look elegant.  They can appear classy or casual depending on the occasion.  And with the numerals themselves being made through the same enameling process is another indication of th effort of VC to make this a very special watch.  The rose gold case and the gold hands finish off a beautiful timepiece.  And the limited edition with the red 12 gives it a final special touch and nod to the past.  So all that to say i am very very pleased the Royal and am certain it will be a watch i treasure for many years and look forward to passing on to future generations.

I also agree with everything Alex said about the COSC certification; I wouldnt see it as that important.  The testing results from the COSC for my movement indicate a  steady -0.7 seconds per day.  And the results from VC also indicate a steady -1 second per day. (-15 seconds at 15 days and -30 seconds at 30 days).

From your screen name, I am guessing you live in NYC?  From what i have been told by several VC retailers here in the US, only 13 of the Royals made in the special edition with the red numeral 12 will be coming to the US (8 had arrived as of Dec).  I had also been told that all the remaining ones had been already accounted for by customers.  However, I just spoke with a authorized dealer and he indicated that he was going to be receiving a second one very soon that was not accounted for. So if you would like the limited edition one, you better act fast. 

Hope this helps your decision.

Ditto on everything that you said. As an owner
02/06/2008 - 17:28

all I can tell say is I love it and enjoy it everytime I put it on...John

Alex and Nathan pretty much sum it up. Two amazing watches, the choice
02/05/2008 - 17:07

will only depend on your taste and budget. The most important is to try them both on.

Keep us posted

COSC is pretty much a marketing gimmick IMHO and you can have
02/05/2008 - 19:35

watches perfectly regulated which are within COSC standards or even perform better without having been certified. The most important is to go for the watch which pleases you the most.

I do have a preference for the VC just because I like the case shape better and love enamel dials

Lie said Tourbillon...
02/07/2008 - 18:52

...COSC certificat is not very important, just marketing, especially if we look at L&S or VC productions.

Buy the watch you love ;)

For my part, I would choose the L&S for its mechanical caliber and the general design aspect.