Hamilton Intra-Matic: Revisiting Vintage Classics
Hamilton Intra-Matic watches follow classic vintage design conventions. The chronographs are especially tidy and modeled after industry icons like the Chrono-Matic and Chronograph A. Automatic Swiss movements power these timepieces.
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American Design from the 1960s
Intra-Matic chronographs take their inspiration from the Chronograph A and Chrono-Matic, both from the late 1960s. Back then, these two vintage chronographs were incredibly popular among race car drivers and watch enthusiasts alike.
One of the most striking features is their dial, which is available in a panda (light dial, dark subdials) or reverse panda (dark dial, light subdials) design. Well-maintained originals are extremely rare today and, thus, demand relatively high prices. These older timepieces are also less robust than what you'd expect from a modern everyday watch. Hamilton saw this as reason enough to introduce a limited-edition remake of the Chrono-Matic at Baselworld 2017. They followed that up with two unlimited models in 2018.
In addition to these popular chronographs, the Intra-Matic collection is also home to a wide range of two-hand watches in various sizes, color schemes, and with numerous bracelet and strap options. Hamilton debuted the first of these timepieces at Baselworld 2012. The watches offer the same 1960s retro charm as their more complicated sister models with a more simple and elegant design.
As alluded to in the series' name, each Intra-Matic watch gets its power from an automatic caliber. Hamilton sources these movements from the seasoned Swiss movement manufacturer ETA. Two-hand watches use the classic ETA 2892-2, while the caliber H-31 ticks away inside the chronographs. The latter is a modified version of the ETA 7753. Hamilton alters this movement in house, including extending its power reserve to 60 hours.
Reasons to Buy a Hamilton Intra-Matic
- Classic designs inspired by the 1960s
- Automatic movements
- Various case sizes
- Especially popular: Intra-Matic Auto Chrono
How much does a Hamilton Intra-Matic cost?
|Intra-Matic Auto Chrono, ref. H38716731||2,200 USD||Chronograph, black and white reserve panda dial, 42 mm, limited run of 1,968 pieces|
|Intra-Matic Auto Chrono, ref. H38416711||1,700 USD||Chronograph, panda dial, 40 mm, caliber H-31|
|Intra-Matic Auto Chrono, ref. H38416541||1,700 USD||Chronograph, blue and white reverse panda dial, 40 mm, caliber H-31|
|Intra-Matic Auto, ref. H38455781||760 USD||Two-hand watch, golden hands and indices, black dial, date at 6 o'clock|
|Intra-Matic Auto, ref. H38455751||650 USD||Two-hand watch, silver dial, date at 6 o'clock, 38 mm, ETA caliber 2892-2|
Prices for an Intra-Matic Auto Chrono
Hamilton introduced the Intra-Matic Auto Chrono ref. H38716731 chronograph at Baselworld 2017. While its basic design closely follows that of its predecessors, it sets itself apart with a reverse panda dial. This means that the subdials at 3 and 9 o'clock are white and the main dial is black. A white tachymeter scale also runs around the dial's edge. The caliber H-31 powers this timepiece and provides it with central hour, minute, and chronograph seconds hands, as well as a date display at 6 o'clock.
This model measures 42 mm in diameter and is water-resistant to 100 m (10 bar, 328 ft). A black leather strap with a pin buckle holds the watch securely on the wrist. Hamilton only ever produced 1,968 copies of this reference. You can find the timepiece on Chrono24 for about 2,200 USD new and 1,500 USD pre-owned.
40-mm Models with Panda Dials
Hamilton expanded the collection with two new Intra-Matic chronographs in 2018. At 40 mm, the refs. H38416711 and H38416541 are two millimeters smaller than the limited edition. They also come with different dial options. The first has a classic white dial with black subdials and a black tachymeter scale. With its smaller size and more traditional color scheme, this model bears an even stronger resemblance to the vintage 1960s models, which are only 36 mm in diameter.
The second reference pairs a blue dial with contrasting white subdials and a white tachymeter scale. Both watches use the caliber H-31. While the white version comes on a black leather strap, the blue Intra-Matic is worn on a brown leather strap. These standard editions sell for around 1,700 USD new. You can save some 220 USD by purchasing a pre-owned timepiece instead.
Features of the Intra-Matic Chronograph
- Automatic caliber H-31
- Black and white or blue and white panda dials
- 60-hour power reserve
- Ref. H38716731 limited to a run of 1,968 pieces
- 40 or 42 mm in diameter
Purchasing a Two-Hand Intra-Matic
Hamilton also crafts two-hand Intra-Matic watches for those with simpler tastes. One example is the 42-mm ref. H38755151. It features a silver sunburst dial with stamped black line indices. The time-tested ETA caliber 2892-2 ticks away inside its case and provides this watch with a 50-hour power reserve. It comes with central hour and minute hands and a date display at 6 o'clock. The final watch is water-resistant to 50 m (5 bar, 164 ft), so you can leave it on in the bath or shower.
Hamilton mounts this model on an eight-piece link stainless steel bracelet with a folding clasp and width of 22 mm. New models change hands for roughly 760 USD on Chrono24. Used watches cost slightly less at 650 USD.
If 42 mm is a bit too large, you may prefer the ref. H38455151. This model is identical to the larger Intra-Matic Auto but measures a more modest 38 mm in diameter. It sells at similar prices.
Gold-Plated Cases and Brown Dials
The ref. H38735501 looks especially elegant thanks to its yellow gold-plated stainless steel case, brown sunburst dial, and golden hands and indices. At 42 mm in diameter, it makes its presence known on the wrist. Hamilton pairs this watch with a brown leather strap with a pin buckle. A new timepiece demands about 810 USD on Chrono24. The manufacturer lists the same model for 1,145 USD.
Fans of rose gold should take a closer look at the ref. H38745501. Its case, indices, and hands are all in this warm golden hue, creating a beautiful contrast with the anthracite dial. A dark brown leather strap completes the look. The 42-mm version costs about 810 USD new. Both the rose and yellow gold editions are also available with a smaller, 38-mm case. You can call one of these models your own for roughly 760 USD.
Features of Intra-Matic Two-Hand Watches
- Classic, simple design
- Automatic ETA calibers
- Available with different color schemes
- Water-resistant to 50 m (5 bar, 164 ft)