Feb 07, 2014

Introducing The Rado HyperChrome Small Second, With Ceramic Monobloc Construction (Details & Pricing)

Although Rado can trace its roots back to 1917 at...


Although Rado can trace its roots back to 1917 at the Schlup & Co. clockwork factory in Switzerland, it is best known today for creating almost futuristic ceramic watches. It was only 1986 when Rado launched its first models using ceramic, something cutting edge at the time. With the launch of the HyperChrome Automatic Small Second, Rado continues its exploration of advanced materials, but this time with a nod to classic watchmaking as well.

The HyperChrome Small Seconds comes in two case materials across four models. Each case features monobloc construction – whether black "High-Tech Ceramic" or "Plasma High-Tech Ceramic." Both materials retain the scratch-resistance, hardness, and chemical stability inherent to ceramic, though the Plasma High-Tech Ceramic offers something a bit more interesting: a metallic finish.


After being heated to 2,000 degrees Celsius, the ceramic material undergoes molecular changes resulting in a metallic grey finish, without the use of any metals. Because of its high density, the ceramic can then be polished to a high shine.

Inside you’ll find an ETA 2895-2 self-winding movement with 42-hour power reserve. Rado chose to color the rotor black–which can be seen through a sapphire caseback on all models. Three models use the metallic Plasma High-Tech Ceramic, two with a silver sun-burst dial and the other with a black dial. The final model uses black ceramic on both the case and bracelet. Each case features a metallic inlay on the sides. While the Plasma models use polished stainless steel for this inlay, the black ceramic case features rose gold-colored PVD-coated stainless steel.

On one model, matte black High-Tech Ceramic is used on both the case and bracelet

At 42mm, the case size is substantially larger than the 25.6mm movement (which is apparent from looking at the back). However, 42mm is still smaller than a lot of the contemporary watches in this price category. When paired with a reasonable thickness of 10.8mm, the watch will sit comfortably on a range of wrist sizes. Whether you like the look of the highly-polished ceramic just comes down to personal taste.

The Rado HyperChrome Small Seconds will launch at Baselworld 2014. Pricing isn’t finalized, but Rado estimates a list price of $3,500 for models with a bracelet and $3,200 for the model with a brown strap. For more information, visit Rado online.

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