jkbarnes wrote: ↑Wed Jul 26, 2023 7:31 pm
This thread has me thinking about my post about the Tudor BB54. It’s not priced at a point beyond my reach financially. If I really wanted that watch to commemorate my retirement, I could get it. But at 2x to 3x the price of a CW, is it 2x to 3x the quality? I just don’t know about that, and therefore would have a really hard time spending the money on it. Now, I don’t judge anyone who does, I just don’t think I could do it.
But what a lovely watch it is…. <sigh>
I have this conversation with myself on almost a daily basis!
I have looked at Sea-Dwellers since the 80s (now that would be a long term grail!
). Not taking into account that I should have bought one back then, I keep putting it side by side with my Ombré and saying is the Sea-Dweller really 8x better? In some ways it is and in other ways it is most certainly not. (note that my pricing is for neo-vintage Sea-Dwellers - Those are and always will be the only ones that exist in my world
iain wrote: ↑Wed Jul 26, 2023 7:23 pm
That’s actually a good observation. I remember trying on someone’s 90’s Rolex GMT Pepsi and was quite disappointed with the quality of the bracelet and how lightweight the whole watch felt.
This point is also interesting. I have long believed that our perception of watches is largely filtered by when
we got into watches. Reading between the lines of your post you got into them around 2010 or so. Give or take. I got into watches (in a serious way - at least to the point where I was starting to spend my own money on them) in the mid to late 80s. The very things you talk about above I think make those watches superior to the new iterations. I find that the latest generation don't wear as well. But, I am looking at it from the lens of when I got into watches and being an owner for more than 30 years. I can say with a straight face that if a 1675 and a 126710 were on the table I would take the 1675 every time. Well, maybe I would take the 126710 sell it, buy a 1675 and go on a vacation with what was left
strapline wrote: ↑Thu Jul 27, 2023 7:28 am
iain wrote: ↑Wed Jul 26, 2023 6:28 pm
Does anyone else have this growing sense of disillusionment with the way the watch industry is heading with its pricing and marketing direction?
Not at all! I think the mechanical watch market has probably never looked more healthy, with its wealth of smaller/newer manufacturers. As a whole I think watch manufacturing standards have gone up, in line with a more knowledgeable watch consuming public. And modern production allows well made watches to be produced in significant volumes keeping prices realistic, whereas in the past these types of detail could only be attained through hand finishing etc. I genuinely believe that for those looking outside the 6,7 or 8 so called marquee brands from the old, historical watch houses, there's never been a more satisfying time to be a watch enthusiast. You only have to look at the excitement generated on this forum every time a new model is announced. I also think the internet straight to consumer model has been a game changer where watch pricing is concerned.
I agree with this. There are more quality choices spanning every price point (even the ultra high end) than ever. We are spoiled for choice as long as you are willing to stray from the 10 or so biggest name brands. The advances in manufacturing over the last 20 years have elevated the lower tier brands to an astonishing degree. It is amazing what can be put into a $700 watch today verses even 20 years ago (even adjusted for inflation).
It certainly seems that the big brands have ceded the entry level space to other brands. We will see with time if this strategy works in the long run.
In the meantime the secondary market is healthier than ever as well. There are still some deals to be had if you are patient and persistent and don't care about the pageantry of purchasing from an AD.
Life is not a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well.