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High-end watches...help me decide!

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by brosnan6, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. mafoofan

    mafoofan Well-Known Member

    Feb 11, 2007
    My brother has the older JLC Master Geographic. He travels a lot and loves it--which says a lot since he's a very practical guy and doesn't much care for expensive watches otherwise.
  2. citoyen

    citoyen Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2008
    may i suggest a chopard watch. i dont know the us perception of chopard but in germany they are mostly thought of jewelry by people who are not interested in watches.
    they produce some jewelry-only watches but if you look in the range of their L.U.C. calibers you will find some really handsome and kind of exceptional looking watches with "in-house" movements. the price range would be from 6000 euros to above 90K (possibly even more, but i do not know).

    two examples: L.U.C Tonneau with a tonneau caliber

    L.U.C. Twist

    and one more...reminding of the blancpain fifty fathoms(?), actually i like this one very much, i would not wear it (nor could i afford!), but i like


  3. brosnan6

    brosnan6 Well-Known Member

    Aug 22, 2007
    Santa Clara, CA/Seattle, WA
    Between the two, the Daytona is the clear choice. Cartier watches are pretty bad values--mainly because the movements are positively junky for the price. Don't let anyone tell you the Daytona is a lesser watch because it happens to be a Rolex--it's a very nice watch, with one of the only column wheel in-house chronograph movements available for the price.

    Yeah I had heard that many "watch snobs" don't like Rolex due to the commercialized status of the brand, but most of the time the comments are directed towards the style/image of the brand and not the mechanism -- something which Rolex has done very well with IMO.

    In my frank opinion, the JLC Master Compressor chonographs are hideously ugly--even though the watch may be a better make than the Daytona. The Squadra chonograph uses the same movement and is not as ugly.

    Ya know, I had never really seriously looked at JLC watches before this. I'm gonna admit that the Master Compressor and Master Geographic (or the combination of Master Compressor Geographic) look seriously sexy!

    The Breguet Type XX and XXI watches are much better looking than the Daytona, in my opinion, but the movement used by them is far inferior. For comparable chronograph movements at the price of the Daytona, your choices are fairly limited: Blancpain, IWC (the Da Vinci), and JLC. Each uses a column wheel instead of a cam system.

    Type XXI looks beautiful as well.

    My brother has the older JLC Master Geographic. He travels a lot and loves it--which says a lot since he's a very practical guy and doesn't much care for expensive watches otherwise.

    Yeah, see above. Looks awesome!

    With all these watches, do they hold their value (or even appreciate) pretty well when compared to the Rolex? I don't want to buy a watch and have it depreciate and not be worth anything but sentimental value (which it appears that the Cartier would do if I ended up with one [​IMG] ). Not that there's anything wrong with sentimental value, but monetary value is something to keep in mind

    Also, what do you guys have to say about IWC movements? Crap, good, average, something else? I really like the Ingenieur

    Now it looks my list has a few changes to it...Cartier is out and JLC/IWC are in. I need to investigate further, but it looks like Daytona is still at the top
  4. leon12

    leon12 Well-Known Member

    Apr 18, 2007
    I don't think it's "watch snobs," just collectors. Some tend to dislike Rolex because of its mass appeal to "life snobs." The rolex ownership percentage of arrogant dicks with money to burn is fairly high (my opinion).

    IWC is great.. most of their movements are not fully "inhouse," but the finishing of the entire watch including the movement is better than rolex (again, my opinion). My collection is all IWC at this point.

    JLC is one of the best watchmaking houses there is.. they blow rolex out of the water. I don't care for their sport watches, but their dress stuff is out of this world.
    If you like their chronos, take a serious look at them..

    Most watches will not appreciate.. Rolex is an industry leader at retaining its value. Of course, the other watches being discussed can be found at pretty steep discount (not usually true of rolex). Many argue that "a rolex holds its value better" is a myth since they depreciate less from full retail price, but other watches are almost never purchased at full retail price. So the percentage depreciation compared to the "what I actually have to pay for a new one" is about the same across most nice watch brands.

    All the watches discussed so far will still be worth something down the road, even the cartier.. you could check out the Sales Corner at timezone.com to get a feel for what used watches sell for.
  5. Bill Smith

    Bill Smith Well-Known Member

    Mar 31, 2008
    Mellonville, Canada
    Cartiers don't do it for me, if that is all on your wish list I would then say the Rolex Stainless Steel Daytona.

    Personally if I had to choose a Rolex to wear it would be a three way tie between the Submariner, Explorer II black dial and the GMT II.

    Thing is at that price point there is a lot of nice watches on the market, I am thinking the IWC Aquatimer, Pilot Chronograph, Portugese Chrono if you want a large dressy watch. I really like the retro homage Aqua Timer that looks like it came from the late 1960's.

    Comes down to what you like.
  6. gvibes

    gvibes Well-Known Member

    May 14, 2007
    Would you buy a Cartier at all if it was another collection? They aren't my only two options, just two that I have in mind right now...I welcome your suggestions!
    Oops - sorry I stepped away from the forum. Others have covered it, but basically, if you get a Cartier, it should be a tank, which you would probably rarely wear, as they seem dressy (to me, at least). So get the Rolex, or one of a huge number of other awesome watches out there. For instance, after seeing photos here, I'm kind of obsessing over the Glashutte Original Power Reserve, and basically any IWC Portugese. I would look through the watch porn thread here, and see if something else captures your eye. Otherwise, I'm sure you'll be happy with a Rolex. Personally, I just kind of dislike when everyone else has the same brand as me.
  7. leon12

    leon12 Well-Known Member

    Apr 18, 2007
    Forgot to mention, if you're set on a chrono..
    The El Primero movement from Zenith is considered by many to be the most elegant ever.
    I don't really like where the brand is heading, but you may..

    The Blancpain Flyback is a favorite.. bracelet and movement are both top notch.

    Speedmaster is well below your range, but it's an iconic chrono, first on the moon..
    I like the broad arrow as well, comes in GMT and Rattrapante as well..

    And my choice in your range.. the IWC Ceramic Doppel..
  8. acidboy

    acidboy Well-Known Member

    Mar 13, 2006
    The movement in the Breguet XX and XXI is based on the Lemania 1372, which in turn is a Lemania 1350 with the addition of a flyback function. Technically, the movement is 'in-house' since Breguet bought Lemania a few years ago. However, the 1350 predates Breguet's takeover by decades. The 1350 started production in 1972 as the 1340 and was designed to be an inexpensive, relatively low-end movement (it was most frequently used in Ebel watches). It does not use a column-wheel mechanism to operate the chronograph functions, but uses a cam system instead (easier to implement, but less refined in operation).

    Breguet adopted the movement because they needed to revamp their watch line in the mid-90's with an affordable sport watch, and did not have the capacity to develop their own movement for it. It's just not a particularly pretty or fine movement--particularly given the price.

    Hmmm... interesting. Thanks, M. I've been looking out for my next future purchase, too... and the XXI is one of the candidates.
  9. Bradford

    Bradford Well-Known Member

    Mar 19, 2002
    I'd go for the Rolex and I know plenty of people who wear one on a daily basis, so I see no reason why you shouldn't make it your workhorse watch.
  10. c3cubed

    c3cubed Well-Known Member

    Dec 31, 2007
    Oakville Ontario Canada
    I wouldn't part with my platinum Patek Philippe. Simple face design, completely understated and incredibly lightweight. It's a nice no-nonsense piece.

    I have a Rolex and have worn it maybe three times. It's chunky and they weigh too much. It smashes into everything and is nasty on the glass of my desktop.

    Therefore - best use for Rolex is in the kitchen: it's perfect as an egg timer.

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