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Electronics USA Online Vintage Digital Stopwatch Museum

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Accusplit Vintage Digital Stopwatch

Accusplit Vintage Stopwatch

1972 Accusplit Stopwatches

Accusplit II, and III (USA)

Manufactured by Harper Time & Electronics Incorporated

Very early production handheld digital stopwatches

Estimated years produced: 1972-1973

Original Price: Unknown

Uses 14 integrated circuit chips! The circuit board is densely populated, with no solder mask, and is hand soldered.

Uses seven segment Panaplex cold cathode gas discharge displays. Electrically, these operate in a similar fashion to Nixie tube displays (which are not seven segment displays).

Displays Minutes, Seconds, and Hundredths of seconds.

Uses 4 "C" cell type 1.5 volt batteries

Weight: 1 pound with batteries installed.

Size: 5.4 x 2.7 x 1.6 inches

Two operating modes: Harper and Standard. Split timing capability.

Today, the "Accusplit" name is a well known brand for timers, stopwatches, and pedometers. Their website claims they invented the first digital stopwatch in 1972. The large and bulky Accusplit I (not pictured), II, and III were certainly very early digital stopwatches using Panaplex displays and multiple ICs which predated the use of LSI (large scale integration) chips. Soon after these Accusplit stopwatches were made they were quickly rendered technologically outdated, as LED displays were introduced, and LSI chips made by National, Intersil, Mostek and others would take over the electronic clock and timer manufacturing industry. The chips made by Intersil for stopwatches would GREATLY reduce the size and cost of digital stopwatches in the coming years.

Heuer Stopwatch 430

Heuer Vintage Digital Stopwatch 430

Heuer Vintage Stopwatch 430

Heuer HL 430 Microsplit (Switzerland)

Part of a series of "Microsplit" branded Heuer stopwatches designed by the world renown German industrial designer Richard Sapper. Other models in the series included the HL 410/420/520/530.

Years produced: mid to late 1970's. The HL 430 was introduced in 1976.

Case is made in Switzerland with USA made electronics using an Intersil ICM7045 28 pin stopwatch timer chip.

Beautiful LED bubble lens displays shows Minutes, Seconds, and Hundredths of Seconds

Slide switch on left side for choosing between Split and Taylor modes

Slide switch on the right side for off, continuous time display, and momentary time display which is used to conserve battery power

Upper case front lifts up to function as a sun shielding hood to create contrast for the LED displays in bright sunlight

Very unique sliding guard to protect accidental pushing of both the start and stop pushbuttons. This guard is shown in the last photo above. It slides to the the right to block the green start and red stop buttons.

Uses four "N" type batteries

Size: 4.15 x 2.15 x 0.70 inches

Weight: 3.6 ounces with batteries installed

This Richard Sapper designed stopwatch is beautiful and elegant. The HL 520 version of this base case design is actually featured in the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York. Of all the stopwatches on this page, the 430 version we have is the most "pocket friendly", as it is the most lightweight, thinnest, and lowest profile non LCD display stopwatch we have encountered so far.

Kienzle Vintage Digital Stopwatch

Kienzle Vintage Stopwatch

Vintage Kienzle Digital LED Stopwatch

Kienzle Chronostop Digital Stopwatch

Kienzle Chronostop (Germany)

Manufactured by Kienzle, the oldest watch maker in Germany

Estimated years produced: mid 1970's

Somewhat similar in styling to the Heuer stopwatches above, but a little larger, not quite as slick looking, BUT actually a little more ergonomic

2.5 mm input jack on the left size for a 3 volt input in lieu of using batteries. This is an unusual feature we have never found on any other handheld stopwatch.

2.5mm input jack on the right side for external start-stop triggering. Again, this is a very unique and unusual feature.

Taylor and Split timing modes

Beautiful LED bubble lens displays for Minutes, Seconds, and Hundredths of Seconds.

It appears to be using an Intersil 24 pin ICM7015 stopwatch timer chip. This could not be verified because the LED display is mounted right on top of this chip, so it could not be read.

Retractable hood on the case for shielding in bright sun conditions

Indented reset button to prevent accidental resetting back to zero during timing operations. It is a little difficult to press, but designed to be this way!

Uses three "AA" size batteries

Size: 4.45 x 2.65 x 0.95 inches

Weight: 5.2 ounces with batteries installed

This stopwatch was quite an unusual find! I like the two nice large slide switches on the front for mode choice and power on-off better than the Heuer which has much smaller and harder to use switches on the sides. Also, the sun hood cover is easier to lift up with small and subtle extruded tabs on each side, and it clicks into position at the perfect angle. This stopwatch is easy and enjoyable to use.

Cronus 1 vintage LED digital stopwatch

Cronus 1 LED stopwatch

Top of Cronus 1 stopwatch

Intersil Cronus 1 Stopwatch (USA)

Manufactured by Intersil Incorporated, in Cupertino, CA. It appears to use the Intersil ICM7045 28 pin stopwatch chip.

Unique eight digit LED stopwatch timer with the ability to time up to 24 hours.

LED bubble lens display shows Hours, Minutes, Seconds, Hundredths of Seconds.

Two buttons on the top. One for starting and stopping the timer, and one that toggles between display on and display off to conserve battery power.

Uses three AA NiCad batteries inside, charged by an external AC wall adapter.

Estimated years produced: 1973 - 1979

Original Price: $195.00 (1973 US Dollars - a lot of money!)

Five function rotary switch for these modes:

1 = Off, 2 = Standard Start-Stop, 3 = Taylor/Sequential, 4 = Split/Cumulative, 5 = Event/Time Out

Dual function stopwatch timer AND digital clock when not in use. The Cronus 1 could be purchased with a nice wooden base to function as a digital desk clock while charging and not in use as a stopwatch. I have not figured out how to put this timer into "clock mode" yet. But I believe it has something to do with the wall adapter used for charging the NiCad batteries inside.

Size: 4.6 x 2.4 x 1.7 inches

Weight: 6 ounces

I really like the case design and the superior ergonomics of the Cronus 1 stopwatch very much. It fits well in the hand and the start-stop and display off buttons are handy and easy to use. Intersil placed the reset button on the front panel and it's quite small, with a long plunger distance making it not so easy to press accidentally.

Introduced in late 1973, I believe the Cronus 1 was chip manufacturer Intersil's first venture into the LED stopwatch market. With the use of their LSI chips and LED bubble displays, they absolutely blew away the heavy, bulky, and outdated Accusplit timers introduced just a year earlier in 1972.

The Intersil Conus 1 was revolutionary in its time.

Cronus Single Event Stopwatch Timer

Cronus Olympian stopwatch

Cronus TotalTimer Stopwatch

Cronus Single Event vintage LED stopwatch

Cronus Total Timer, Single Event, and Olympian Stopwatches (USA)

Two brand names, same company, manufactured by CPPI - Cronus Precision Products Incorporated of Santa Clara, CA

Simple stopwatches - just start-stop and reset back to zero. That's it!

The most popular LED stopwatches ever produced

Estimated years produced: 1975-1980

LED bubble lens displays, showing Minutes, Seconds, and Hundredths of Seconds.

Two different but very similar case style designs. Observe photos.

Start-Stop buttons on the top, as well as the on-off switches can vary as well

Uses three "AA" size batteries

Size: 3.65 x 2.4 x 1.5 inches

Weight: 4.2 ounces

These stopwatches no longer had any branding of Intersil on them. The Cronus and Total Timer names were used by CPPI (see above). I wonder if CPPI was a spin off or subsidiary of Intersil. I cannot find any information on this. But they certainly had Intersil stopwatch chips in them. They are great stopwatches, and extremely well built with nice aesthetics and ergonomic design. Decades after they were made, they are fairly easy to find and in good working condition. But always ask about the battery compartment and possible corrosion from leaking alkaline batteries.

Cronus 3T Stopwatch Timer

Cronus 3T and 3S Stopwatches (USA)

Very similar to the above series Cronus timers, offering simple basic stopwatch capability and Taylor and Split timing.

The 3T operated in Taylor split action timing mode, and the 3S functioned in, I believe, just standard Split timing mode. I don't have one yet to try out, so I can't really tell the major difference between the 3T and 3T.

I can't seem to find any reference to "Taylor" mode in today's stopwatches. None! So perhaps this is an outdated term, or a mode that is no longer used, but it was common in 1970's stopwatches.

Do You Have an Interesting Vintage Digital Stopwatch Timer?

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