I'm looking for a reliable and user-friendly chess clock, but I don't want to spend $50 (under $25 would be preferable). I'm not sure whether analog or digital would be better for me - so one question is: what are the pros and cons of each? Also, if possible, I'd like it to show seconds, even for a couple-hour game. If that's not possible, then at least for the last ten minutes or so. What type or brand should I pay attention to?

Edit: I've found a couple clocks I'd probably be interested in - one is the cheapest analog clock I could find: a Chezmate precision quartz clock for $20.99, and the other is the cheapest digital one - for $32.90. I'd like to know if the analog one will be all I'll need, or whether it'll be worth it to go for a digital one. The digital one seems to have a few more features, but basically, in terms of durability and reliability, which would be better for the price?

2 Answers 2


I just saw you asked this couple of months back but adding my answer if others are looking for something in this price-range.

Do you have an iPhone? There are chess-clock apps which are pretty good. This is only for home games, as you don't want the other player scratching too much on your iPhone screen.

You should also search eBay. They are the best bet for low-prized yet pretty good digital chess clocks. Don't buy the cheap analog clocks as they have inherent problems and I have thrown away couple of them before switching to digital clocks. Always compare prices at Amazon before bidding on eBay.

Note: Digital clocks outweigh the cheap analog clocks by miles for under $25.

  1. Pleasing displays

  2. Lots of options for your game (e.g. extra seconds added for each move if you want it).

  3. More lifetime than analog clocks at this price range (fewer mechanical problems).

  4. Their only drawback is they need batteries.

  5. Some digital clocks require little knowledge of how to set the clocks, but reading the manual helps and it is not very complicated.

Lots of good digital chess clocks on eBay (used/new; make sure it is listed as working) and Amazon. Good Luck.


If you intend to play with any advanced time controls, the digital clocks are better or perhaps necessary. For example, some blitz time controls don't start counting down until a few extra seconds pass. That is, if you play quickly, you don't run out of time. This isn't possible with analog clocks.

I have the cheapest analog clock and it's fine for normal tournament play, as far as I can tell.

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