ETA 2824, a robust and versatile Swiss movement

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With over three decades of history, the ETA 2824 caliber is possibly one of the most well-known and appreciated Swiss movements among mechanical watch enthusiasts.

An accurate and highly versatile automatic mechanism present in a wide range of watches, from affordable to high-end timepieces, as it offers various levels of finishing.

In all of them, it is a robust movement that requires little maintenance. Additionally, it is easy to repair and has a good supply of spare parts.

In this article, we will review its entire history and specifications, comparing the ETA 2824 with the best movements from other brands.

ÔťÜ ETA 2824 – Technical Data Sheet

Vibration Frequency28,000 vph
Power Reserve42 hours
Dimensions25.6 mm x 4.6 mm (Diameter x Depth)
Precision+/-12 / +/-7 / +/-4 sec. per day (depending on finishing)
FunctionsHour, minutes, and seconds in central hands, and date calendar
Second stop (hacking)Yes
Manual windingYes

ÔťÜ A little history

The ETA 2824 caliber began production in Switzerland in 1972, although it was a derivation of the Eterna 1429U and 1439U calibers produced between 1959 and 1961. calibre eta 2824-2

At that time, ETA was called ETA┬┤sa and was already part of the Swatch Group, but it collaborated closely with Eterna.

To better understand this relationship, we need to go back to 1856 when Josef Girand and Urs Schild founded Eterna and created ETA┬┤sa as their movement division.

In parallel, Urs’s brother, Adolf Schild, founded ASSA or AS, becoming one of the most important caliber manufacturers of the 1920s.

Just a few years later, in 1926, AS merged with Fontainemelon (FHF) and A.Michel to create Ebauches SA, a company that later absorbed Felsa and in 1931 gave rise to the Swatch Group known at that time as ASUAG (Allgemeine Schweizer Uhrenindustrie AG).

Over the years, ASUAG continued to merge numerous firms in the industry, including manufacturers of balance wheels, hairsprings, escapements, and movements.

In 1932, Eterna decided to discontinue its movement division ETA┬┤sa, but instead of dissolving it, it became part of Ebauches SA, thus becoming another company within the Swatch Group.

Most of the companies integrated into Swatch continued to retain their factories and brands, so it is not uncommon for ETA to continue collaborating with Eterna even after their separation.

ÔťÜ How does it work?

The ETA 2824 is an automatic movement with bidirectional winding and a ball-bearing rotor. The mechanism also includes a hacking feature (second stop) and manual winding.

ETA 2824

It is also a modular movement, as it is built on the base of the ETA 2801 manual winding caliber, to which an automatic winding module is added.

The winding works thanks to a double-click wheels system, devised by Eterna, which allows the mechanism to charge energy in both directions.

In fact, the ball-bearing rotor is also an Eterna patent from 1948, known as “Eterna-Matic” at the time and present in the 1429U and 1439U calibers.

While the 1429U and 1439U calibers beat at a relatively slow 18,000 vph, typical of that era, the ETA 2824 was improved to operate at 28,800 vph.

The only difference between the Eterna 1429U and the 1439U is that the latter has a small screw for more precise adjustment of the pallet fork.

Regarding the shock protection system, the ETA 2824 uses Etachoc in the basic finishes and Incabloc in the higher ones. Both protect the movement from shocks and impacts, although the latter is considered more prestigious.

This movement also features the Etachron regulation system, allowing for easier and more precise adjustment of the mechanism.

Ôץ Accuracy

The 2824 can achieve different levels of precision depending on the type of finishing. It comes in up to four levels of finishing, each with different accuracy ranges:

  • Standard: the movement is adjusted in two positions, providing an accuracy range of -12 ´Ż× +30 sec. per day.
  • Elabor├ę: the movement is adjusted in three positions, achieving accuracy within the range of -7 ´Ż× +20 sec. per day.
  • Top: it is assembled with a five-position adjustment, providing accuracy within the range of -4 ´Ż× +15 sec. per day.
  • Chronom├Ętre: adjusted to meet the precision standards set by the COSC, which falls within the range of -4 ´Ż× +6 sec. per day.

It is worth noting that this does not mean that an ETA movement with a standard finish cannot achieve better accuracy than +-12 sec. per day, and in practice, it often does.

The accuracy ranges specified by manufacturers are more oriented towards providing a classification for the movement, and in practice, they often turn out to be more precise.

The relatively humble 2824 can match the accuracy of much more expensive mechanisms when properly lubricated and adjusted, and it is also quite durable.

Ôץ Power Reserve

The power reserve of the 2824 is around 38 – 40 hours when the mechanism is fully wound, achieved by wearing the watch or turning the crown.

Thanks to its bidirectional rotor, the automatic module of this movement can charge in both directions, making it more efficient.

Ôץ Brands using ETA 2824

ETA has been supplying movements to other brands for decades, being one of the main Swiss manufacturers, and the 2824 is one of the most recognized movements, making it present in many watches.

However, in recent years, the Swatch Group has restricted the supply of ETA movements to brands that are not part of their conglomerate.

Still, many brands use ETA movements because the Swatch Group is behind many of the major Swiss watch brands in the market. Some of them include:

  • Aristo
  • Longines
  • Certina
  • Hamilton
  • Omega
  • Laco
  • Marc & Sons
  • Yema
  • Victorinox
  • Versace

And here are some watches that use it:

ÔťÜ ETA 2824 and ETA 2824-2: What’s the difference?

The ETA 2824-2 is simply a later version of the same movement, launched in 1982, and also the latest update to date.
planos eta 2824-2

ÔťÜ ETA 2824-2 vs ETA 2836-2

The ETA 2836-2 caliber is nothing more than a 2824-2 with the added capability of displaying the day of the week alongside the date. Therefore, the specifications are the same.

Perhaps the only notable difference is the larger thickness of the 2836-2 caliber, possibly due to the space occupied by that additional complication.

Vibration Frequency28,800 vph28,800 vph
Power Reserve42 hours42 hours
Dimensions25.6 x 4.6 mm25.6 x 5.05 mm
Precision+/-12 / +/-7 / +/-4 sec. per day+/-12 / +/-7 / +/-4 sec. per day
Second stopYesYes
Manual windingYesYes

ÔťÜ ETA 2824 vs Sellita SW200

One could say that the Sellita SW200 caliber is the market’s response to the restriction of ETA 2824 to brands outside the Swatch Group.
In fact, both mechanisms are practically identical in design and operation, but the SW200 is more economical and easier to obtain.

sellita sw200 vs eta 2824
The Sellita is also Swiss-made and, as shown in the table, its specifications are the same, except for having one more jewel, which does not affect the otherwise identical characteristics.

ModelETA 2824Sellita SW200
Vibration Frequency28,800 vph28,800 vph
Power Reserve42 hours38 hours
Dimensions25.6 x 4.6 mm25.6 x 4.6 mm
Precision+/-12 / +/-7 / +/-4 sec. per day+/-12 / +/-7 / +/-4 sec. per day
Second stopYesYes
Manual windingYesYes

ÔťÜ ETA 2824 vs Miyota 9015

Miyota 9015
The Miyota 9015 is much more economical and also operates at 28,800 vph, but it cannot reach the precision levels of the ETA caliber.

In the standard finish of the 2824, they can achieve similar accuracy, but a Miyota 9015 is unlikely to meet COSC requirements.

One of the main differences is also that the 6R15 beats at a lower rate. This means that the second hand does not move as smoothly as in the 2824, as it jumps less frequently.

However, it surpasses the ETA movement in power reserve by more than 10 hours, a significant advantage considering its lower cost.

ModelETA 2824Miyota 9015
Vibration Frequency28,800 vph28,800 vph
Power Reserve42 hours42 hours
Dimensions25.6 x 4.6 mm26 x 3.90 mm
Precision+/-12 / +/-7 / +/-4 sec. per day-10 ´Ż× +30 sec. per day
Second stopYesYes
Manual windingYesYes

ÔťÜ Setting the Time and Date

  • Time: pull the crown out two clicks and turn it to set the hands to the desired time.
  • Date: pull the crown out one click and turn it to change the date digit until reaching the desired date.
  • Manual winding: with the crown pressed against the case or not extracted, turn it 30 times for a full wind. Stop if you feel too much resistance to avoid forcing the mechanism.

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Last update of links and images on 2024-04-25.

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