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Are Baume and Mercier good watches at $1200?

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by chocsosa, Jul 2, 2012.

  1. randomhero88

    randomhero88 Well-Known Member

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    There are subtleties that make them different. Hamiltons are great watches for the price. I have an older Hamilton Dress watch and it's simple, but built like a tank. I think Hamiltons are great starter watches, but they aren't known for being a high end watch. In my opinion, Baume et Mercier has a better reputation for being a higher end mid level watch. Just person opinion though of course.
    I own an Omega Seamaster, Baume et Mercier Capeland, Mont Blanc Sport, Mont Blanc Star, a Hamilton 17 jewel and a few other sub $500 watches. The Capeland is made extremely well and I'd recommend it to anyone. I paid $700 for mine for the record. I would have spent $1000 on it if I could do it again.
    A Japanese movement watch is not in the same category as Swiss Made watches. Sure, they're making great quality watches in Japan now, but with high end watches, you pay a premium for the brand history.
    I agree to an extent. As long as you know how to use ebay and know what to look for, you'll be fine. I've bought/sold around $30k worth of stuff on ebay this year alone and had only two issues that were immedietely rectified.
     
  2. Mariooo

    Mariooo Well-Known Member

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    This.
    Baume & Mercier are aimed more towards design & jewelry.. which of course doesn't necessarily make them "bad"
    If you like their design, go for it.. otherwise there are better choices

    at the approx 1k range I'd say Stowa at the lower end, and Sinn or Nomos at the upper end as good choices
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
  3. Harbin

    Harbin Well-Known Member

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  4. edmorel

    edmorel Well-Known Member

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    If I was in a decent mood, I'd educate you on how Seiko is more of a true watch brand than 95% of what you consider Swiss, how they are more innovative and have more history with mechanical movements and how among the watch people in the know, at the high end (grand seiko), they are considered to be among top 10 probably.
     
  5. Cant kill da Rooster

    Cant kill da Rooster Well-Known Member

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    I like Seikos in the lower range, Seiko 5, they have a lot of great divers...but every Grand Seiko I have seen (only in pictures mind you) have put me to sleep.

    The one you posted I thought was quite interesting. I looked up some comments on it afterwards, all good. I don't understand the double your money part though.
     
  6. edmorel

    edmorel Well-Known Member

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    It was a bit tongue in cheek, those (spirit) watches have been discontinued and they are currently selling for about double what they were selling for when new.

    If you like the styling, at the low end Seiko is pretty much unbeatable. In terms of the high end, a lot of the spring drive stuff is butt ugly and they have some real ugly stuff up and down their line but I own this GS and I think its as beautful as any dress watch out there:

    [​IMG]

    Their MarineMaster is an iconic, benchmark dive watch. They do retrogrades, disc's, column wheel chrono's (depending who you ask they were the first to do a column wheel), hi beat movements etc.


    The thing about watches though is that no one is really buying them for their function. A quartz watch that we get in a kids value meal will tell more accurate time than pretty much any of the highest end watches. So we are buying a piece of jewelry which appeals to us from a brand/perception perspective. I am a Seiko fanboy because of their history, innovation etc but I don't kid myself, I know that there is also a bit of "I'm so smart and in the know wearing this grand seiko while the shlubs wear their Concord's/Baume & Mercier etc etc".
     
  7. Cant kill da Rooster

    Cant kill da Rooster Well-Known Member

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    Lots of people do buy them for function. I don't always understand paying for this even though I can appreciate matching functions while maintaining a certain asthetic. For example I get paying more for a flyback, gmt, durabiltiy, calendars and so on but not for the aesthetic of the movement itself. Still learning this.

    I do appreciate your love for Seiko though.

    :fistbump:
     
  8. randomhero88

    randomhero88 Well-Known Member

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    Your post comes off awfully condescending, either by intention or not. I made sure to add a disclaimer that just because a watch is not swiss made, does not mean that it isn't of high quality.

    With any high end item such as watches, pens, shoes, etc, you are going to pay a premium for history and reputation. Do Patek Philippe watches cost tens of thousands of dollars to make? Of course not, but their reputation is worth the markup. Mont Blanc is another perfect example. Their markup is something ridiculous like 90%. However, the resale market is still ridiculously high because the demand is there.

    Seiko makes great watches, I will be one of the first to agree with that. However, they don't have the reputation for being a high end luxury item. They are more than worth their value and they are well made timepieces, however, I would never spend thousands of dollars on one. There is a Chinese manufacturer making Rolex replicas with extreme precision. They have several hundred dollar movements, quality built cases and bracelets and they even have their own specific serial numbers. They sell for $600-1000. In the end, they're more than worth the price as far as build quality is concerned, but does that make them worth the same price as an authentic Submariner? In my opinion, no.

    Baume et Mercier isn't the best watch for the value. I agree with that. However, they have a fairly rich history, a prestigous ownership, and their watches are solidly built. They are certainly one of the best values for the money at least in my opinion(and many others).


    My best advice is to look into what the retail is and what they go for used. As I said before, I paid $700 for my Capeland S. I've seen them go for as high as $1200-1400 in used condition on Ebay. That means I got my timepiece at a good price. Find something you like, something that is well made, and something that will hold its value and if you can accomplish all three of those, you're making a good investment.
     
  9. Big T

    Big T Well-Known Member

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    What is a "starter" watch? Is this a watch that you buy, thinking I am only a low level so and so or what? Calling something a "starter" is a pretty bizarre statement. For my twelve year old daughter, does she need "starter" perfume? For my new employees, do they need "starter" ass chewings?

    Can we please come up with a better, more fitting description?
     
  10. randomhero88

    randomhero88 Well-Known Member

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    A starter watch in my opinion is one you buy for more than just looks and for more than just an accessory. Some may spend $100 or others may spend $5000. My idea of a "starter" watch is something that you buy as a beginning to a "collection."

    If you would like a better term then you're welcome to offer one yourself. I've heard the term used in many different circles of people so I'm not the only one using it.
     
  11. mr monty

    mr monty Well-Known Member

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    A starter watch is a watch you buy at the start of "your" collection. Depending on what you want to spend, it can cost $25 or $25K or more.
     
  12. minervau

    minervau Well-Known Member

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    At $1200 there are better values to be had. It depends on the style you like. Based on your selection of the Classima, I think you could save yourself quite a bit by going with a Hamilton Jazzmaster in the $500-600 range.

    If you want to go German, Stowa is a great watch in the $800 range.

    Both more or less have the same guts as a Baume & Mercier (an ETA movement) but are much less expensive, and both are quality dress watches. The Stowa is a little more casual so is an all-arounder, whereas the Jazzmaster is a classic dress watch.
     
  13. papa kot

    papa kot Well-Known Member

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    Please do not buy B&M for 1,200.

    Here is a simple guide. If you want to spend less than $100 on a watch, buy whatever you want. If you want to spend more than $100 on a watch, buy whatever you want after reading articles, posts and for sale ads on http://www.timezone.com for about a month.

    It is really hard to summarize this in a single thread without sounding like a jerk, but mid-range watches are interesting fish, as most of them target folks who do not know what they are buying. In other words, Baume and Mercier, Bell & Ross, Longines, Omega (well most of the Omegas) and other "mall" stuff, including Rolex, found across the United States are great honeypots designed by very clever marketing gurus. Those pros are well paid geniuses who blend well-crafted slogans, e.g. "The first watch on the moon," with sexy females to generate profit margins you can only dream about. Do this for a several decades in a row and you end up with population that associates brands with things they are not. See Exibit A: How Rolex went from a tool watch one could afford to a watch for tools who can afford it.

    So please do more research on forums dedicated to time pieces before buying that watch. If you still want to buy it after getting your know on, at least you'll save some bucks.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
    1 person likes this.
  14. edmorel

    edmorel Well-Known Member

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    Shocked that it took four pages before a watch thread had its first Rolex bash post.
     
  15. acidboy

    acidboy Well-Known Member

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    maybe I'm not the 90%... maybe I think the richemont group got a bargain for b&m and fits nicely in the lower tier of their watch brands... maybe I am not THAT impressed that they use an eta movement because I have an idea how much your off the rack eta costs...maybe I am wrong to think the b&m brand has lost whatever reputation it had a decade or so ago... but hey, if you like your b&m and truly, really think its a good "starter" watch for your future collection then go for it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
  16. Winston S.

    Winston S. Well-Known Member

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    "Dress watch" is very subjective to many also. Most people I think are OK with pretty much anything in a business environment. My idea of a dress watch is something very simple. My Nomos Tangente is my dressiest watch, but some may even say that because of the subseconds dial that it's not dressy enough as it has an additional complication that is too busy for "dress."


    +1 I think you can get a Nomos Tangente for your budget new. It may be too simple for your tastes though.


    I would say gateway instead. It's your first of many watches to come probably, unless you find your grail watch and just settle on that one.
     
  17. papa kot

    papa kot Well-Known Member

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    Can't go wrong with Nomos! Simple, manufactured in-house, affordable.
     
  18. Big T

    Big T Well-Known Member

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    "Gateway" seems more appropriate, though sometimes the questioner may want to be a bit more descriptive of what they're looking for. There may also be a few here who's eyes are larger than their stomache in that they think they may buy a B & M or whatever now and then in another year, move up. When that year rolls around (much too quickly the older one gets), they find they have to put off the purchase.

    So maybe......we ought to just start a list, for example, of products that represent a great value now and for the forseeable future. A great watch today can remain a great watch tomorrow. One of my favorites is a Tag I bought 16 years ago. It has taken a hell of a beating over the years and still looks great today. Amortize the cost over those years and it was cheap. In that same time frame, I yearned for a Rolex but went for the Tag, almost as a "Gateway". Today, I'm glad I didn't get the Rolex, as I'm not a Rolex type of person.
     
  19. Mercuryman76

    Mercuryman76 Well-Known Member

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    I'm wearing my B&M Capeland S XXL today and I'm quite happy with it. Watches, as with almost anything, are completely subjective items. Some people swear by certain brands, others wouldn't touch those brands with a ten foot greasy dildo. The question isn't whether or not a B&M for $1200 is "worth it", but rather, is a $1200 B&M worth it to you? You're the one that's going to wear it so you have to decide what you like about it. Is it the design? The movement? The wrist presence? All of the above? At $1200 what you're probably getting is an ETA 2824 movement which is a good workhorse movement that's used by tons of others. Can you find a $500 watch with this movement? Sure. Can you find a $2500 watch with this movement? Probably. You just have to figure out what matters the most to you.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2012
  20. RedLeg

    RedLeg Well-Known Member

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    Don't get too caught up with trying to get a watch with an in-house movement because of the opinions of others. The reality is that 99% of the people who see your watch cannot even tell you what an ETA movement is. Even less will judge you for having one. Would you look down on someone wearing a Cartier Pasha for its movement not being in house?

    If it is important to you, then definitely go with something in house. If not, don't think twice about buying what you like. ETA movements are also a hell of a lot cheaper to service, which is something to think about if you buy used or are planning to hold onto your timepiece for a long time.

    On a side note, I always chuckle when people knock ETA movements and Rolex in the same post.
     

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