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November 05, 2010



Jim don't be rude. Your analogy doesn't hold up. You are appealing to the branding instead of quality.

The Bentley might have a beast of an engine compared to a Toyota Tacoma. In your analogy speed is equivalent to accuracy and precision for telling time and in that case the engine of a mechanical watch is crap, just absolute bs that marketing was able to make someone rationalize instead of logically evaluate. It's more comparable to say a Toyota Tacoma vs a Unicycle.

I could come up with 100 different analogies that would demonstrate the opposite of your's, for example doctor's using electronic pacemakers vs putting in an automatic mechanical movement based pacemaker. But that isn't the point and analogies are flawed.

The facts are that for less money you get something that is at least 2 magnitudes better in accuracy and precision than a mechanical watch. Most mechanical watches you can't even see the gears.

If it comes down to enjoying the craftsmanship that someone did on the casing of a watch then you don't appreciate the watch, you appreciate it's casing. And they do make fancy cases with a quartz movement if that's all you care about.

Saying that quartz has less engineering than a mechanical is flat out wrong. A lay person sees gears and thinks it's a marvel of engineering, an intelligent person visualizes transistors and harnessing the electron to move through incredibly complex circuits at 10^-16 meters and thinks it's a marvel of engineering. Obviously the second one is much more impressive.

If you think you are getting some old world craftsmanship with mechanical watches then you are also wrong. Mechanical watches are designed on computers and cut by computers and to keep time on mechanicals you sync them to digital clocks. Somewhere in the middle of that there is a little bit of hand finishing and a lot of marketing.

Digital watches aren't the only watches made in china, if you really want a mechanical watch you can buy them on ebay for $30 brand new from china too.

brian cooper

you get what you pay for its your choice.

Old luddite

The Orig Poster was very ignorant regarding costs for service of mechanical watches; now it is easy to find YouTube videos that clearly show both the training and craftsmanship needed, and the microscopic precision, thoroughness, and experience that can't be rushed. The new surge in mechanical watch interest may be fad and fashion driven, but the truth is a watch may be one of the few jewelry-like accessories men can wear comfortably. I have seen twenty year old pro quality road bicycles which can cost more to keep well serviced and upgraded, than the bike cost new - so what? Mechanical watches require the owner to be aware and mature enough to recognize the continuum regarding sustaining the service industry and not just lowballing every price point. My Seiko Diver has outlasted every quartz watch, is a tank, and earned the service I owe it.

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