Watch categories and rankings

I found this image on another forum. Do you agree with the rankings? Does it actually matter? Thoughts…🤔

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FWIW as an avid AliExpress watch buyer (and, I think there are quite a few budget minded watch enthusiasts that are the same on here) not sure if those categories are strictly based on price. Hypothetically, would a $300 AliExpress watch be the equiv of a BASIC LUXURY watch? IDK.

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I would classify differently, based on history and contribution to the art of watch making. The classification here is based on vanity.

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It’s not 100% off, but not accurate either. How do you compare a FP and a Patek? How is Victornox more luxury then Seiko? And where is all the other watch brands? It’s almost impossible to rank brands in tiers, especially when all brands aren’t represented. And as @vegasdood mentioned. Are they ranked in luxurie-ness or in price? Cause price is easy, luxury not so much.

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A lot of this has to be brand perception. It's like cars, you might have a nissan skyline but it is still a nissan. You can have a basic BMW costing half as much as the nissan but you drive a BMW. The Ali watches and cheaper brands are maybe up there on quality but the brand name is unknown. Everyone knows what a tag is or a Rolex but how many people know what a San Martin, or pagani design is? To many a luxury watch is a status symbol.

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jacowin80

A lot of this has to be brand perception. It's like cars, you might have a nissan skyline but it is still a nissan. You can have a basic BMW costing half as much as the nissan but you drive a BMW. The Ali watches and cheaper brands are maybe up there on quality but the brand name is unknown. Everyone knows what a tag is or a Rolex but how many people know what a San Martin, or pagani design is? To many a luxury watch is a status symbol.

I agree.. you can also fold in the “value” proposition with perception. History and utility has its place in value/perception. Laco (ranked last) had an impactful role in watch history. Or Bovet, have their pieces gone to the moon?

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Overall pretty reasonable if just going by price. RM is a glaring omission

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Certina and Hamilton should both be moved up one tier.

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This sort of tier lists get wrecked quite easily when you point out that the price of an “entry” Seiko Marinemaster is higher than the price of a “basic luxury” Nomos Ludwig. So many other examples come to mind but you get the idea.

These lists are a very simplistic way of garnering engagement online by having us talk and argue about their content, which was thrown together by somebody who hasn’t even handled/worn most of the brands in the picture.

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If your secure in yourself nothing matters 💯💪

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Kieron

If your secure in yourself nothing matters 💯💪

Completely agree

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The bottom tiers are a little weird. I never considered marathon an entry level luxury watch brand. They’re more tool focused than anything. I don’t have enough experience with the higher end brands.

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I’d rather see one of these as an actual price chart

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Straight up marketing.

Don't even pay it a second thought.

My wrist, my rules.

Looks spot on to me

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There should be an “AliExpress Clone” category at the bottom.

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Based on what criteria, I wonder. What are the objective definitions for each category? Without such it’s just subjective opinion.

Regardless, I play comfortably in the lower 3, I could afford to play in two of the upper tiers, but honestly they just don’t typical catch my interest. So honestly, I don’t think it matters - at least not to me.

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I’ve looked really hard, maybe I missed it but I can’t see Hublot.

If Hublot isn’t there then it must be completely correct 🙂

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Good starting point. But I have a few objective observations. Let me know what you think.

  1. I would move FP Journe from ultra luxury to high end luxury.

  2. I would add Jacob and Co to ultra luxury. It’s missing.

  3. Will move Breguet from high end luxury to Basic luxury.

  4. Will move Glasshute from Luxury to basic luxury.

  5. Never heard of Corum - I don’t feel qualified to commment on it. Maybe other senior watch collectors can comment while I look it up.

  6. Oris Sinn and Junghans from basic luxury to entry luxury.

  7. Don’t feel qualified enough to comment on a lot of brands in the last 3 tiers. That’s not an area of focus for me yet and I haven’t heard of a lot of brands. So not commenting.

Let me know how you feel and what you think of my 1-6 points.

Cheers.

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jon1967

Very similar to this one this one’s a couple years old

Image

I like this. Esp the “Enthusiast” section

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Chopra

Good starting point. But I have a few objective observations. Let me know what you think.

  1. I would move FP Journe from ultra luxury to high end luxury.

  2. I would add Jacob and Co to ultra luxury. It’s missing.

  3. Will move Breguet from high end luxury to Basic luxury.

  4. Will move Glasshute from Luxury to basic luxury.

  5. Never heard of Corum - I don’t feel qualified to commment on it. Maybe other senior watch collectors can comment while I look it up.

  6. Oris Sinn and Junghans from basic luxury to entry luxury.

  7. Don’t feel qualified enough to comment on a lot of brands in the last 3 tiers. That’s not an area of focus for me yet and I haven’t heard of a lot of brands. So not commenting.

Let me know how you feel and what you think of my 1-6 points.

Cheers.

If you never heard of Corum, you are a young guy, Corum sort stopped being relevant in the 90s, was never a fan but a lot of guys were. Brand is still around, produce an interesting line of bubble watches, a few are collectable.

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I think it'd be more interesting if someone made a "price range" based chart - maybe filtering for non precious metal models. Some of the brands (like Seiko) actually has a huge range, from Seiko 5 to some of the higher end Presage spring drive.

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Chopra

Good starting point. But I have a few objective observations. Let me know what you think.

  1. I would move FP Journe from ultra luxury to high end luxury.

  2. I would add Jacob and Co to ultra luxury. It’s missing.

  3. Will move Breguet from high end luxury to Basic luxury.

  4. Will move Glasshute from Luxury to basic luxury.

  5. Never heard of Corum - I don’t feel qualified to commment on it. Maybe other senior watch collectors can comment while I look it up.

  6. Oris Sinn and Junghans from basic luxury to entry luxury.

  7. Don’t feel qualified enough to comment on a lot of brands in the last 3 tiers. That’s not an area of focus for me yet and I haven’t heard of a lot of brands. So not commenting.

Let me know how you feel and what you think of my 1-6 points.

Cheers.

On point 4: Glashutte has more in common with high-end luxury than basic luxury but of course offers value for what you're getting. I think luxury is appropriate . . . they are definitely batting at the level of Rolex and with Grand Seiko attention to detail. And you're not finding anything close to the level of finishing, hand engraving, and complications that Glashutte offers in basic luxury. Of Course, I'm not sure what your rationale is . . . if you're just going by price or by market value or by how notable they are overall then maybe I could see the shift. But if you're actually looking at what the brands are doing and what they offer as a product then Glashutte needs to stay where it is.

On point 6: If anything, Oris is beginning to make moves to position themselves higher not lower with their in-house movements. And when I'm thinking about a dive watches btw. 2 and 5k, the Aquis (esp. when thinking about the 400 caliber) is probably going to be on a short list alongside Tudor, Longines . . . so I think the current placement is appropriate.) . .. I think they are prob in a transition period of people still thinking of them as more affordable but that doesn't negate the fact that they are a very large independent with a long history that has really begun to innovate and offer some non-traditional offerings in terms of colors and aesthetics. SO, I could see it in both, I suppose . . . but I'm leaning toward keeping them where they are.

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Seiko have models costing well into the thousands. And definitely ain't entry level.

kinda right, there are bits and peieces I'd quibble with but otoh the way the groups work perhaps its impossible to get right. Like I couldnt put chopard/bulgari/GO in the same group as rolex/omega/cartier/breitling but not sure if I see a simple way out of that. Others have pointed out the problem of large omnibrands like seiko spanning multiple levels.

in the end I think lists like this are sort of useful as long as you are aware of the limitations and dont live or die by them.

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On the whole I agree with this list. I have a few here and there I don’t agree with. Tudor as Basic Luxury seems a bit low

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It doesn't matter.

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These lists are just a ridiculous concept to me

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I agree on the rankings. However, after years of collecting I now buy solely for the feeling the watch gives me. The branding is now very low on my list of priorities.

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This ranking may make sense if each brand had to submit their lowest priced watch in their entire current catalogue for sole consideration.

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Looks like you are basing this totally on a subjective basis. For example Seiko has a broad spectrum based on function, cost and historical significance.