Alden for J Crew is the same, you just lose a bit of street cred.
I don't like the indy boots either... generally consider suede to not be my thing.
Coming from a guy who like at least some of McNairy's offerings, which are often made by Sanders in the UK and make generally decent pairs.
Wearing my year+ old J Crew tan suede PTBs right now... Not many better shoes are available to wear sockless with a pair of navy chino shorts and an Oxford shirt... I am thinking about resoling this with a red Dainite sole and getting a new pair of tans next spring.
Personally I dont see a difference between buying Aldens from J Crew vs retailers like Brooks Brothers. Of course we like to support our independent boutiques as well but at the end of the day no one has much trouble selling their Aldens