Long-standing archaeological narratives suggest that the 3rd millennium cal BC is a key period in Mediterranean and European prehistory, characterized by the development of extensive interaction networks. In the Balkans for instance, the identification of such interactions relies solely upon typological arguments associated with conflicting local terminologies. Through a combination of 25 new radiocarbon (14C) dates and re-examination of the existing documentation, this paper defines the absolute chronology for groups which were previously only broadly framed into the 3rd millennium BC central Balkans (modern-day Serbia and North Macedonia). These absolute dates allow us to establish with greater clarity the chronological relations between different cultural groups that represent the main cultural units of the central Balkans sequence for the 3rd millennium cal BC: Coţofeni-Kostolac, Bubanj-Hum II, Belotić-Bela Crkva, Armenochori, and Bubanj Hum III. When comparing together the chronologies for material culture, funerary treatment of the body, and funerary architecture, there are no easily discernible patterns. We observe instead a complex mix of traits criss-crossing over a wide area encompassing the Pannonian basin, the central Balkans and the Greek peninsula.