Horological purists have always lamented the fact that the vast majority of GMT watches on the market are what are known as office GMTs – meaning that the adjustment of the dual time zone occurs with the adjustment of the 24-hour hand instead of the way it should be, with the adjustment of the hour hand instead.
This is a situation that cannot be helped since the two off-the-shelf movements that are available, the ETA 2893-2 and the Valjoux 7754 (with chronograph) accomplishes the GMT function in this way via the use of a module.
Comparatively speaking then, these watches are really only good for using to track a foreign timezone when one is not travelling, since one can see the 24-hour hand pointing at the target time zone and easily adjust for a different one at easily.
Use that same watch when travelling however and it becomes a tedious process if you want to keep home time tracked by the 24-hour hand and local time to the hour and minute hands, with each individual item needing to be adjusted one by one.By contrast, a ‘real’ GMT watch works by allowing the hour hand (or local time) to be adjusted easily via the crown, and you can imagine how much better this works while travelling, since your home time, as displayed by the 24 hour hand is kept constant while your local time, shown by the main hour and minute hands will change depending on where you travel to.
On the market right now, there are not many ‘real’ GMT movements available, and those that exist are almost almost in-house ones found in the big brands such as Rolex, Tudor, Omega, Breitling and Seiko. These by necessity have been in-house movements and are of course relatively more expensive than the faux ETA based ones. So what is one to do if one wants a GMT watch that comes under $2000 USD?
Well, you go to Mido, who has released this year in 2019, a watch that is, I am quite certain, the most affordable real GMT one on the market, the Mido Multifort Dual Time, coming in at an attainable SGD$1,590 or $1,650 depending on the material.
The Mido Multifort Dual Time should get the attention of those looking for a “proper” GMT, or one with the quickset hour hand.
In fact I had long been resigned to the fact that one had to spend a minimum of $5,000 USD and above to get one and I almost didn’t believe that this Mido had a quickest hour hand until I pulled the crown out to try it for myself. In the first position, one can set the date, in the second position, you can set the quickest hour hand, forwards or backwards and with the date adjusting accordingly and in the third position, you set the time. (see the video above)
How it does this is via a module stacked on top of the brand’s Caliber 80, a movement with a very useful 80 hour power reserve and a date function. Of course, you lose some extras found in other similarly priced Mido watches, such as a Silicon balance spring and a Chronometer rating (à la the Mido Chronometer One), but for what you pay versus the functionality, it is a good deal indeed.The second time zone in this watch is indicated with a 4th hand though an appliqué centred in the dial, and the large Geneva Stripes add some polish to the design and a nice background for excellent readability. Three versions of the watch are available with my favourite being the one with the black PVD stainless steel case and on a black leather strap. The other two are a little dresser, with one version being a rose gold tone PVD in stainless steel on a brown leather strap and the other being a stainless steel cased blue dial version on a bracelet.
All in all, like other Mido watches, the Multifort Dual Time offers tremendous value and now especially with the offer of a real GMT complication at an affordable price. Maybe this is a watch to consider having on on your wrist on your next travel adventure!