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December 13, 2013

Comments

Gary

Jonny, When I first watched the video, I thought that was a lot of expensive watches to bring to a restaurant. I guess when you're worth $40 million, a $10 K watch or $100 K collection of watches doesn't seem like Fort Knox.

Angelo

It's all relative. There are the fashion watch people who buy a $195.00 Invicta and that is breaking their bank----for them, it's the big plunge. So they are downmarket of you the way you are downmarket of Mayer. And it's a matter of opinion regarding build quality/components vs. movement as being vital. I guess on the top end watches, they can't quantify the added cost by the parts you see and feel----so they turn to the inside makings. What does it really boil down to? The "purpose" is for the machine to tell you what time it is. If an $80.00 Seiko quartz does that, why is there any need to build an automatic movement or mainspring style at all? But as Jeff once said, he feels "connected" to a watch that gains energy from his own movements. Is that logical? Who's to say? If he feels it is and he's the one buying and wearing the watch, than it's logical. So if Mayer and the others feel an "edge" for having a movement that thrives when looked at by microscopes, I guess that's their own bragging point.

jonnybardo

Angelo, but I don't really see that as the main purpose of a watch. I mean, its the main FUNCTIONAL purpose, but if that was the only purpose than I'd have continued buying $40 watches at REI or Target, or just used my cell phone.

Its not about logic either. Its more about affect - how a watch looks and feels. Watches are, in this day and age, akin to jewelry. They are luxury items.

What goes into "luxury" really depends upon the person. I personally don't resonate with the qualities that many folks buy into - the prestige, the name brand, even knowing that its a world class movement even though you can't actually know with your own senses. There just seems something wrong about the idea that the vast majority of Patek Philippe owners wouldn't notice the difference if someone replaced the movement with a Japanese movement.

What IS noticeable, what we can see with our senses and develop a palate for, is build and design quality. That's what I focus on. I want a robust movement so that it doesn't break down, but I don't really care if its ETA or Miyota, as long as it keeps good time and lasts a long time. I don't need anything more than a Sumo movement, even a winding Black Monster movement.

Now unfortunately for me, quality of build and design doesn't stop at the same price that solid movement does. In other words, if the movement on a $300 Japanese watch is enough for me, I can notice differences in the build and design quality of more expensive watches. My Sumo, Citizen Signature, and Orient Revolvers - all watches in the $500-900 range - are noticeably higher quality than my Black Monster or other sub-$300 watches. My Orient Saturation Diver is a noticeable step up from those and, from what I can tell, the Omega Seamaster is another step up. I think once you get to about $3000, the differences get smaller and smaller in terms of design and build quality, and the increase in price is more about the movement and name brand.

But a variety of factors play into cost - movement, design, build, name brand, etc. For me the movement and name brand are secondary, so I look for watches whose price tag is less focused on those, which is mainly micro-brands and Japanese watches.

Gregory

A long time ago customer who rides very high-end bicycles once said (in relation to watches)...

Two o'clock is 2 o'clock whether it's a Timex or a Rolex

Gregory

More about that comment - the guy who said it would not have been caught dead riding a Huffy.

Personally, do lust after nice watches - ones I can't afford... I wear a Citizen AV0031-59A - gift from the Mrs. about 6 years ago - works great, has good heft and turns the occasional eye.

Angelo

Jonny: If it's fashion/how it looks and feels, I go back to the Invicta strength of big, heavy watches with reasonable quality materials (not the best, not the worst). Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so for someone who loves the look of an Invicta and is satisfied with the heft and overall quality of it----they're on top of their Mt. Everest. Jeff rejects watches if the lume isn't strong enough. Based on my reasons for wearing a watch/liking a watch (or yours) lume doesn't really come into play. Again, the cell phone or L.E.D. clock in the car or on your nightstand can tell you the time in the dark. But for Jeff, "something's missing" if the watch has inferior lume. I think if the discussion proves anything, it proves that we all value different things. And I wonder----if money was really no object, if we'd justify spending far more? Mayer has convinced himself that it's worth the money he's paying to get these watches. If you struck gold, do you think you'd go as far upmarket as he has----and convince yourself that those watches had that something extra that you need?

jonnybardo

I think you hit the nail on the head, Angelo: "we all value different things." We can call it the Angelo Principle. Simple, effective, and very truthful. Jeff highly values lume, you don't much at all; I'm about halfway between, maybe a bit more towards Jeff in that I like me some good lume.

As for Invicta, in a way I'm nostalgic for the time that I was excited about Sunday Runs and satisfied with $150 watches, but I allowed myself to get into more expensive watches and once you develop your palate with anything, its really hard to go back. Beer, wine, chocolate, stereo equipment, watches, etc.

I do still own one Invicta, the Capsule 6661, which I won't sell. But the difference between it and my Orients or my Seiko Sumo, for instance, is quite striking (to me). Its sort of like the difference between a souped up 80s Camaro with garish spoiler and neon colors and a svelt and classy Maserati GranTurismo. The Camaro is fun, but rather crude comparatively.

But the Angelo Principle points to the fact that I just don't value some of the things that make a really expensive watch really expensive. This doesn't mean I don't value movement, or couldn't get into it, but I'd have to very wealthy indeed to ever want to spend more than a few grand on a watch, and then I could see it only being a once every few years kind of purchase.

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