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Blancpain ranking

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Don Goldstein, Aug 28, 2007.

  1. Don Goldstein

    Don Goldstein Senior member

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    Where does Blancpain rank? Is it in the same league as Vacheron or Audemars?
     
  2. dave

    dave Senior member

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    I love them. they make some of the most classic designs available nowadays. Personally, I would put them on par with JLC and Breguet and the like. Maybe a notch below the big three but that's just me.
     
  3. faust

    faust Senior member

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    Where does Blancpain rank? Is it in the same league as Vacheron or Audemars?

    Affirmative. Isn't their motto, "We'll never make an automatic watch?" (or a quartz watch? something along those lines).
     
  4. Mute

    Mute Senior member

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    Blancpain makes beautiful watches. They don't have the history of a PP or AP but I wouldn't complain about owning one.
     
  5. norcaltransplant

    norcaltransplant Senior member

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    I love them. they make some of the most classic designs available nowadays. Personally, I would put them on par with JLC and Breguet and the like. Maybe a notch below the big three but that's just me.

    They, like Breguet, were revived during the 80s as a "luxury watch" company. They make extensive use of F.Piguet movements in their chronographs, as does Breguet in the XX and XXI, and rank below JLC with regards to innovation. Designs are classic and favor a dressier aesthetic. I like the Villeret series though I prefer the older 37mm sized pieces for proper proportions.

    Definitely a step below the Big Three (and A.Lange & Sohne).
     
  6. LabelKing

    LabelKing Senior member

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    In the old days, Blancpain was considered a decidely mid-tier brand, nothing very special.

    It didn't have the technical cachet of Omega nor the gravitas of the Big Three--Patek, Vacheron, Audemars--or the luxury of some minor makers like C.H.Meylan, Haas Neveux.
     
  7. shoefan

    shoefan Senior member

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    No, not considered a peer of Patek, Audemars and Vacheron.

    Probably in the next rank, although IMO not really quite equal to JLC or perhaps Breguet (Breguet and Blancpain are owned by the same , and I think Breguet is positioned in their marketing strategy a bit higher than Blancpain, though whether this translates into quality or marketplace perception is a different thing.) Certainly, Blancpains do not retain their value when compared to Patek or Lange, for example. They do, however, have some very elegant, simple designs.

    Their motto is somthing like "We've never made a quartz watch, and we never will." Truth be told, this is because Blancpain was essentially a dormant brand during the rise of quartz watches and was revived in order to lend credibility to a line of mechanical watches during the '80's. It was probably the first really successful example of this strategy. Nowdays, there are all sorts of brands that attempt to trade on the name of a historical watchmaking company.
     
  8. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Personally, I'm a big fan of BP, but they aren't Patek, Lange, VC or AP; although, to be fair, Lange is a complete revival brand, but luckily they have been able to pull it off better than anyone else. They are about the same level as, JLC (as mentioned, they are less innovative, because of their interrupted history and lack of long term technical development).

    I think of BP as a wildcard, something akin to GP and Breguet: very old names that have really been given a push in the late 90's in order to revive the brand to its former glory, regardless if that glory is justified or merely nostalgia.

    Jon.
     
  9. aen

    aen Active Member

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    Affirmative. Isn't their motto, "We'll never make an automatic watch?" (or a quartz watch? something along those lines).

    Well, they do make an automatic watch: http://www.chessbase.com/newsdetail.asp?newsid=2734
     
  10. Don Goldstein

    Don Goldstein Senior member

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    Is Lange considered a revival brand?
     
  11. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Is Lange considered a revival brand?

    It is a revival brand, how many vintage Lange watches are there from the 50's or 60's?

    Jon.
     
  12. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    It is a revival brand, how many vintage Lange watches are there from the 50’s or 60’s?
    Of course I would never want to debate watch topics with you Jon but the above is a bit of an over-simplification since Lange was merged with other Glashutte watchmakers into VEB GUB during the denazification process in East Germany. VEB GUB produced watches through the cold war in the Lange factory (some pretty crappy watches for sure...). After the fall of the wall in '89, VEB GUB split back into the original brands, including Lange & S. (bought by Richemont) and Glashutte Original (baught by Swatch).

    I think that's (somewhat) historically correct...

    So there are no Lange from the 50s and 60s because at that time it was consolidated into GUB - a little bit of a different story from the many watchmakers who failed and disappeared during the quartz revolution, to then re-appear when some investor acquires the defunct brand to revive it.
     
  13. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Of course I would never want to debate watch topics with you Jon but the above is a bit of an over-simplification since Lange was merged with other Glashutte watchmakers into GUB during the denazification process in East Germany. GUB produced watches through the cold war in the Lange factory (some pretty crappy watches for sure...). After the fall of the wall in '89, GUB split back into the original brands, including Lange & S. (bought by Richemont) and Glashutte Original (baught by Swatch).

    I think that's (somewhat) historically correct...

    So there are no Lange from the 50s and 60s because at that time it was consolidated into GUB - a little bit of a different story from the many watchmakers who failed and disappeared during the quartz revolution, to then re-appear when some investor acquired the defunct brand to revive it.


    In other words: There were no Lange watches, as we know them, in its entirety (In other words as a competitor to Patek) during the 50’s or 60’s. Thanks for agreeing.

    Jon.
     
  14. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    In other words: There were no Lange watches, as we know them, in its entirety (In other words as a competitor to Patek) during the 50’s or 60’s. Thanks for agreeing.
    You're welcome. I do agree - they were not sold under the Lange brand. I also wanted to add some color as it's not your typical "revival" story
     
  15. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    You're welcome. I do agree. I also wanted to add some color as it's not your typical "revival" story

    Poor BP...

    Jon.
     
  16. Daytona John

    Daytona John Active Member

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    Interesting. In many respects, I consider Lange a peer who can sit at the same table as Patek, VC, and certainly AP.

    Not innovative? Anyone checked out the new Calibre L922.1 Sax-O-Mat movement? Very impressive. I also consider Lange's movement decoration in a singular class.

    And as much as I absolutely love JLC, I'd put them in a more middle tier with Blancpain.
     
  17. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    Not innovative? Anyone checked out the new Calibre L922.1 Sax-O-Mat movement? Very impressive. I also consider Lange's movement decoration in a singular class.
    Nobody disagrees with you on that. I don't think anyone here said that Lange was not innovative
     
  18. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Senior member

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    Blancpain is generally regarded as the #2 brand in the Swatch stable, behind Breguet. I would put it on the same level as JLC and perhaps GO as well. It had the reputation for the longest time of terrible after-market service, but things have turned around in that area.

    On a more general note, I think a lot of people are too wrapped up in watch rankings. If you spend four figures, the issue is whether the watch smiles at you. The Blancpain Aqua Lung was my first mechanical watch, and I wouldn't trade it straight up for any watch that retails for under $8000.
     
  19. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Blancpain is generally regarded as the #2 brand in the Swatch stable, behind Breguet. I would put it on the same level as JLC and perhaps GO as well. It had the reputation for the longest time of terrible after-market service, but things have turned around in that area.

    On a more general note, I think a lot of people are too wrapped up in watch rankings. If you spend four figures, the issue is whether the watch smiles at you. The Blancpain Aqua Lung was my first mechanical watch, and I wouldn't trade it straight up for any watch that retails for under $8000.


    Indeed, rankings are a bit ridiculous, it's best to perhaps compare companies one on one, but not which is best, because the answer that oftentimes comes back is "best at what? And for what?".

    Jon.
     
  20. Daytona John

    Daytona John Active Member

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    Nobody disagrees with you on that. I don't think anyone here said that Lange was not innovative

    A quote from ImageWIS:

     

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