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Question: if you had $1,500.00 to spend on a watch, what would you buy?

First time poster here... I've been researching for months for the perfect first expensive (in my world) watch to own. My budget was/is $1,500 max, but less would be better, under $1,000 if ask my wife...

Prerequisites:

I want a watch that I can leave to my son and will be something that endures the test of time (no pun intended): Automatic movement, high quality, reliable, durable.

Other than that I am open to anything else: complications, no complications, classic, modern, composite, metal, luminous or non, exhibition or not. Just

a really good watch and value for my hard earned, government taxed dollars that I can pass on to the next generation.

I was in a Movado outlet the other day and fell for a Concord C2 Chrono.

Concord | C2 Chronograph, Automatic, 43mm, Steel, Silver Dial
Concord

The watch is beautiful, and fits my 7 1/2 wrist nicely enough. The MSRP (which no one actually charges), is $6,900. After discounts and a coupon I can buy it for just shy of $1,600.00 (over my limit, but close).

I do love the look of the watch, but it is more than I wanted to spend. Could I do better with a different watch? There is still time for me to reverse the purchase. I seriously just want to have an heirloom watch to leave my son.

There are SO MANY brands, I just am overwhelmed here.

Below is a big list of watch brands I've gathered, each has a model or two within my budget. Some more affordable than others; some would mean a pre-owned, but if in mint condition that would be fine.

Help! Do I pull the trigger on the C2?

Thank you!!!

In no particular order I have considered:

• Oris
• Ball
• Steinhart
• Concord
• Tag Heuer
• Lew & Hewey (very affordable)
• Tissot
• Longines
• Breitling (if I can find a used one in my price)
• Hamilton
• Movado
• Rado
• Hamilton
• Perrelet
• Baume and Mercier
• Armand Nicolet
• Ebel
• Raymond Weil
• Edox
• Gucci
• Tonino Lamborghini
• Bulova Accutron
• XERIC
• Ingersoll
• Omega (pre-owned)
• Junkers
• Luminox
• Mondaine
• ARCHIMEDE
• Orient
• Victornix Swiss Army
• Frederique Constant
• Glycine
• Christopher Ward
• Nomos
• Alpina
• Stowa
• Sinn
• Momo
• Montblanc
• Bruno Sohnle Glashutte
• Junghans Meister
• Chronoswiss
• Fortis
• Tourneau
• Tutima
• SISU
• Tawatec tritium - automatic?
• Nite tritium - automatic?


I have a bunch of sub-$200 watches that I wear day-to-day. I'd consider them all beaters, though I take care of them. I have all types, chrono's, slim, fat, analog, digital, solar, auto, wind, quartz, classy, gaudy :), modern, cheapo, tritium, skeleton, etc. I got all these to get the urge out of my system for cheap, what I want now is a watch that will be a keeper. I'd by a Rolex submariner if I could afford one, I do love that classic design - which led me to the Steinhart Diver models. I'm definite on it being an automatic, and I would like a classic design that will look as good today as it will in 30 years. I fell for the Concord because of 'looks', and we all know how that often ends up.

I guess another way to think about this is whether the Concord C2 is worth the $1,600.00? For the same money or less I could buy a Ball Fireman Racer (which is really nice), a Tag Acquaracer, an Oris Classic, a pre-owned Breitling, even a Lew and Hewey Acionna in blue.

My problem is I like them all!

I'll never be able to extinguish my fascination with watches with just one model - I'm hooked. But I want one that will be the crown jewel of sorts.

Thanks again!
 

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Well, that Concord design is kind of specialized. And if I were buying a watch with the thought of it being passed down to my son, I'd wait first and discern what type or style of watch HE'LL be attracted to before I go spending that kind of cash. It sounds like you really like the looks of that Concord...but 20, 30, or 40 years from now will he? Mind you, there's nothing wrong with the brand Concord or with your train of thought...just be sure of your motivations.

Next, a lot of fine names to choose from. A few I'd strike from the list:

*Lew & Huey - they are nothing but "Fashion Watches"...pretty designs cased up with someone else's movements. And God alone knows what kind of quality they have!

*Gucci - Really High-quality fashion watch. You're paying too much for just the name "Gucci" and not enough for what's inside.

*Tonino Lambo - Italian pretty-boy fashion watches. T.L. also hawks sunglasses, mobile phones and leather goods with their name on them. Not my idea of a watch company!

*Ingersoll - now owned by nothing more than a British watch import business. God knows where the watches originally come from!

*Tawatec - not mechanical. They have quartz movements.
 

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If you look on the gray market, you can find this Frederique Constant in your price range.

Manufacture Classics | Frederique Constant - Geneve

If features their in-house movement. Great dial and a well decorated movement and distinct rotor.

Christopher Ward has their 5 day movement, which is an in-house movement for $2200. But, often, they run 10-15% off sales which would bring it down in your range. A 5 day power reserve would be a great feature.

Tissot's Heritage Navigator Chronometer Tissot Heritage Navigator Men's Automatic COSC Silver Dial Watch with Brown Leather Strap Once again, if price is an issue, you can find them cheaper online at reputable gray dealers.

The Hamilton Regulator goes for $1250 at the Hamilton online store: H42615553 | Hamilton Watch

Consider the source though. : ) Cheap and stingy!
 

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If I were ready to spend $1500 on a watch, the first one I'd consider is a vintage Omega Constellation pie pan from the 60's. That was Omega's Golden Era, and the 55x / 56x calibers are still considered one of the best production automatics ever made. A Longines Conquest caliber 291 or Flagship caliber 30L are other fantastic watches from that period.

However, if you insist on going modern, look into a preowned IWC Portofino or Breitling Colt Super Ocean that's several years old. For a new modern watch, Christopher Ward, Baume & Mercier, Frederique Constant, Sinn, Stowa, Perrelet, Tissot, Longines, and Hamilton are all decent from your list - but my picks of that group would be Nomos, TAG Heuer, or Chronoswiss.
 

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I agree with Ulack's thinking - if you want to pass a watch down to your son, you'd be hard pressed to beat a watch that's already a classic (and has 'endured the test of time' to use your words). With a more modern watch you're taking a gamble as to the longevity of it's appeal.
Good luck with the hunt, it's a great 'dilemma' to have :thumbup1:
 

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I'm going out on a limb here and saying that you have not reached a level of sophistication in your interest of all things watches to know, for sure, what you really want … hence, the really long list watches you provided. At the moment, you are like a hungry bass, striking at every lure thrown its way.

If I were you, I would pick out a nice Hamilton or Oris, model of your choice. Both manufacture "nice" watches that are within your budget, and are held in (relatively) high regard within the watch community.

Such a move would satisfy your immediate desire to purchase quality while, at the same time, allow you to mature and filter through the nuances of your new-found passion until you know, without question, the "crown jewel" you are looking for.

That's just my opinion.

OkeefenokeeJoe
 

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1,500 is a difficult number. It's too high for the cheaper watch class and not enough for the higher end watches. In short if this was for me I would add another $600.00 to $900.00 and get a nice new lower end Breitling. This way you would have a classic watch for many years.
 

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Very true...although not everyone can be as flexible as that with their budgets. Just sayin'.
 

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Doesn't seem to be a popular choice, but I'd look at Maurice LaCroix. Some of their Pontos line are quite interesting yet still classic looking and in your price range. If you don't mind rectangular shaped watches, you can find a Pontos Rectangulaire for about half that, then get a Christopher Ward Trident as well without, in my opinion, sacrificing quality. I'd put either up against any $1,500 watch. If you don't like rectangular, you could put a nice Frederique Constant or several other brands in place of the Pontos. In that range, I'd take two $750 watches over one $1,500 watch every time, and they'd both have the same quality as the one for $1,500. Just my opinion, of course.

This also gives the benefit of having a nice dressy watch and a nice sporty watch. I was an idiot and sold a nice Maurice LaCroix Miros auto dive watch, but have a Pontos Rectangulaire day/date with a silver dial.
 

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Very true...although not everyone can be as flexible as that with their budgets. Just sayin'.
Not true - it's just a matter of time. One might have to actually get away from the world of instant gratification in order to get where you want to be.

The most expensive watch you will ever buy is the one you purchase to "hold you over" until you can afford the one you really want.
 

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Good point, but I've never found "the one" I want! Too many choices out there!

Not true - it's just a matter of time. One might have to actually get away from the world of instant gratification in order to get where you want to be.

The most expensive watch you will ever buy is the one you purchase to "hold you over" until you can afford the one you really want.
 

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Hi eaglecroft

I have the exact same dilemma as you and started with a $1500 budget which I have extended to $2000 due to all the choices out there.

I found this Oris in this price bracket

01 674 7661 4434-07 8 22 85 - Oris Artix GT Chronograph - Oris Artix GT - Motor Sport - Collection - Oris - Purely mechanical Swiss watches.

Can anybody give us feedback or opinions as to whether this is a good watch or not? I would personally prefer the sweeping second hand but perhaps this is a feature which is unique to this specific watch?

I am torn between the Oris chronos and the Tag Link Chronos but am finding Tag to be substantially more expensive and the more I look around the more common they seem to be particularly on sites like Ebay. I am assuming there are lots of fakes out there too!

Just wondering if the "entry level" tags are worth the money as they appear a bit ordinary (just my opinion! :))

So my dilemma is Tag vs Oris and why? This purchase is intended to last me at least 10 years so want something I really like without any regrets later on.

Honest feedback will be appreciated - no offense will be taken! :)
 

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Hey ya'll …. I read on another watch forum that the OP, eaglecroft, purchased the Concord C2 Chronograph that he referenced in his initial posting.

In fact, this is his (eaglecroft's) text:

I've never spent more than $150 for a watch, but after much deliberation and researching I pulled the trigger and bought a Concord C2 Chronograph. I'm actually scared to death to wear it, in fear of scratching and devaluing it. I paid just under $1,600.00 for it ($1,570.00 to be precise). That's a ton of dough for a guy with 2 kids heading towards college soon. But it is a special treat, a senseless act of indulgence. I always wanted a Breitling, second to that a Tag Heuer, that was all before I started reading up on the sport of horology. I might have gone for a Longines, or an Oris, or a Christopher Ward, or a Steinhart, or a Tissot, or a Stowa... LOL, that was the problem - I like too many, but can only afford one. I saw the C2 in a Movado outlet (the audience grumbles...), and it just looked so nice. I walked away from it 3 separate visits, but I kept going back. On the fourth visit I laid down my credit card and took it home. I don't have buyer's remorse, but I do have guilt for splurging on myself with such extravagance. I just wonder if I got a good deal? For the same money or less I could have gotten any or the aforementioned brands. I wasn't into the idea of a pre-owned, I wanted new and I wanted an auto - and this what I arrived at.

Anyhow that's my story, my wife can't figure out why any watch would cost more than $100 bucks - and I am not smart enough to explain it to her. I hope this watch lives with me a very long time.

I'd attach a link where he has some pics of his new acquisition, but I think that might not be allowed. In fact, my attaching his text here might not be allowed, but I am simply trying to put some closure to this topic.

OkeefenokeeJoe
 
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