@RogerP looks good to me, I'm going to assume you had one of your Vass on too.
Cheers Cleav. Actually, my Anthony Cleverley Rourkes got the call today (last non-watch pic, I promise):
Rog, I'm not sure I'd go with the tie and PS together, altough the contrasts within the PS kind of make it work, but I have no personal objection to purple ties. Just saying. Also, I've a fine purple herringbone from Aquascutum that I bought years ago before meeting the Queen (of England, not Sports Illustrated). I could tell she was digging it.
Started doing some research on getting my first (quite literally) watch. Been learning about how watches work and, of course, going through the TWAT thread. I think I've developed my "first draft" of likes and dislikes in a watch, and was hoping to get some directions from people here.
What I'm looking for
- something erring on the side of conservative
- something with subtle character
- classic rather than modern
- a more versatile watch, but on the side of dressy (after all, this is going to be my one watch for quite a while; if I were to choose between an everyday watch or a formal watch, I'd go with formal, but if I could wear it everyday that would be a plus)
What I don't like
- chunky watches
- big shapes on the dial
- Rolexes (Rolecies?)
Budget is ~4.5k USD.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Now, I'm quite new to this genre, so I don't expect to make any purchases soon. But, after maybe a week or so of casually perusing watch threads, I've found the first watch (short of 200k Pateks) which I actually felt anything for (but I haven't seen that many watches, hence why I'm asking around now) - the Max Bill Chronoscope:
Why I like it
- well within budget
- apparently it's a proper quality watch with a proper movement (Valjoux 7750)
- clean, understated dial
- small bezel
- looks very functional, as if I just ripped it out of an instrument panel and strapped it to my wrist. Particularly like the pushers.
- Dat font. Normally I'm not a fan of arabic numerals on watches, but dat font.
- (might be completely wrong here) it is understated enough to be dressy, but still would look out of place everyday because of the letters and the stopwatch pushers
Why I'm apprehensive
- 40 mm might be a bit big for dress watches?
- Difficult to purchase, and cannot try it on, as I am in Australia and it's impossible to find anything down here.
- Might be a bit too anachronistic
- Not sapphire crystal (does it matter that much?)
So, thoughts on this watch? If I were to get this watch, I'd probably get the steel with numbered dial. Even though the numberless dial is more clean and elegant, I feel that the numbers give it so much more character. Also, as this is still early days, any alternatives would be greatly appreciated as well.
I mean stuff like chunky lettering, or blocky hour line thingies.
I doubt I have enough experience to go used yet, so paying close to retail is my only option :(
I'm in a very open relationship. I just happened to like the design of the Max Bill; I did look at the non-chronograph automatic, but the non-numbered dial loses the "instrumental" feel, and the numbered dial has the numbering too far in. Feel free to suggest away!
Mezentius - I like the Max Bill a lot - it's clean to the point of being austere. Very sharp.
I don't think 40mm is too big for a dress watch, but it is as big as I would want to go, personally. One point to consider beyond the diameter is the thickness or height of the case. The 7750 is not thin movement, and watches so equipped do tend to be on the thick side. You might want to look at the full dimensions of the Max Bill just to make sure it isn't too tall for your liking.
While I almost always prefer a sapphire crystal, its absence isn't a deal breaker for me. None of my vintage watches have sapphire crystals and I wear them regularly without issue.
If you like the aesthetic of the Max Bill, I second Trompe le Monde's suggestion to give Nomos a close look.
I agree that it's less hideous that other "smart" watches. But still more hideous then a watch. :)
To Mr Mezentius' question, I've tried to go through a logical search:
- $3000-$4500 (There are cheaper, like the Junghans, but it seemed to me that you really wanted this to be a purchase of a certain magnitude)
- respectable maker that isn't Rolex
- steel case
- 36mm-39mm in diameter
- a dress watch (or possibly a chrono, but no bezels etc)
I give you:
Nomos, as suggested above: the 40mm Zurich ( *love*) is very minimalist Bauhaus, but the interesting dial colours might appeal. If not, possibly the Tangomat for more visual interest on a white dial.
Omega: the Constellation is very distinctive, although personally not my taste. The Aqua Terra I like, and plenty of options in your range. But I think the one for you might be the DeVille Prestige with the power reserve: has the interesting subdials like a chrono, but not too fussy and definitely a versatile dress watch rather than a dressy sports watch.
Zenith: the Port Royal, probably. I like the blue one.
IWC; The Spitfire Type XVI is around at your price. Small by IWC standards, and works both smart and casual I'd say. Very watch-cred maker for that money.
Chronoswiss: interesting maker that was mentioned recently. The Regulator is interesting, I just saw one in this price range.
Unless you really want a dress-ish chronograph, in which case you have the Chronoswiss Classic Chronograph, that I think is quite smart.