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December 11, 2013

Comments

Gary

I enjoyed this video, Jeff. It seems that John collects primarily vintage watches, including quite a few Rolex models.

jonnybardo

I couldn't help but wonder why every watch enthusiast insists on buying watches as expensive as they can within their means, but inevitably has a minimum that they won't go below. I mean, I get it on one hand in that I find that there's a marked difference between a $150 watch and a $400 watch, and since my "set-point" is $400+ or so, its hard to go below that because of the noticeable differences in quality. But none of Mayer's watches were less than--I don't know, $4-5K?--and a few, I think, were over $10K. Why no $1-3K watches? Is it because they are markedly inferior?

It becomes such a head-game, about an idea more than a reality - especially when enthusiasts start talking about movement. About a year ago when I had a brief conversation with one of the dad's at my daughters' school, the guy wearing the Panerai, as he discussed his collection all he could talk about was the movement of this or that watch.

Maybe if I was wealthier I'd get really into the movement, but its hard to imagine. For me a watch's main appeal is the physical aesthetics - what is tangible, palpable. What I can see and feel on my wrist, and how that makes me feel. The difference between the $550 Seiko Sumo's movement and a Rolex Submariner has to be so small that only horology equipment can detect it. So it becomes an idea in one's mind.

I appreciated Mayer's excitement about his watches. Maybe I'm just jealous because I can't blithely lay out $100K worth of watches on a counter and talk about how this or that watch isn't like carrying Fort Knox around on your wrist. There's something jaded, blase even, about high-end collectors. I think it is another variation of falling into the More Is Better Fallacy.

Every enthusiast has a sweetspot, but for me it isn't where you get to world class movements--like it is for Mayer and other high-end collectors--but where you get to quality builds and aesthetic designs that hold a certain artistry. But there's no way to objectively quantify it.

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