Watch Buying Guide

On November 5, 2013

- How to Choose a Watch for men?
‚Äč- What’s realy important when buying a watches?
- I don’t know anything about watches, how to choose a good one?
- What kind of watches is better?
- What watch features are important?
- What’s better for watch movement, automatic or quartz?
… etc.

This questions I hear a lot from friends and people who are planing to buy a watch. That’s why I decided to write an article that will help you to make a right watch choice.

For the majority of men, a watch is one of the few pieces of jewelry that they will wear. So it is very important tochoose a right watch that would be of utmost importance to man’s image.

Choosing watches for men guide

It is easy to get lost in the great amount of existing watch brands and model ranges. That is why we prepared a small guide rules for choosing an appropriate watch model that will perfectly suit your style and clothes.

In this article you will come across with some terms. To be aware of the term meaning we advice you from time to time to pop into the Watch Glossary, where we picked up all the frequently used watch term with the intelligible explanations.

So, let’s start.Watches have a wide range of characteristics depending on internal or external features. For better understanding we propose to turn to some tables below.

External watch features classification

Watch Styles Watches Case materials Crystal Types Strap Materials Dial Colors
  • dress
  • watch
  • designer watch
  • sports watch
  • dress watch(classic watch)
  • plastic
  • resins
  • stainless steel
  • base metal (usually brass)
  • gold-plated base metals
  • gold-filled and precious metals
  • plastic
  • mineral glass
  • synthetic sapphire
  • plastic
  • rubber or caoutchouc
  • specially developed metals (tungsten carbide or titanium)
  • metal:
    - base metal
    - precious metal
  • exotic skins
  • leather
  • digital
  • analog:
    - roman
    - arabicnumbers
  • rainbow dyes
  • cartoon characters
  • car manufacturers
  • favored sports teams, etc.

Internal watch features classification

Jewels number Water resistance Functions
  • 17 jewels – a typical “fully jeweled” mechanical movement
  • 56 jewels – a typical quality watch
  • 100 jewels – for better precision
  • 3 atm (30 m or 100 ft): rain, gentle splash
  • 5 atm (50 m or 165 ft): swimming, splashing in pool, but not heavy diving or jumping
  • 10 atm (100 m or 330 ft): minimum for sport diving
  • 20 atm or more for serious diving
  • standard – the hours, minutes and seconds
  • complicated:
    - calendar watches
    - perpetual calendar
    - chronographs
    - chronometers

Watch Movement Types:

  • Mechanical chronographer (manual and automatic)
    needs to be winded manually or automatically (through the natural motion of the wrist)
  • Quartz chronographer
    no necessity for winding, but will need battery replacements
  • Automatic quartz or kinetic 
    automatic quartz watch movements combine a self-winding rotor mechanism (as used in automatic mechanical watches) to generate electricity with a piezoelectric quartz crystal as its timing element. Such movements aim to provide the advantages of quartz without the environmental impact of batteries
  • Lithium-iodine (LID) batteries 
    is equipped with a special titanium lithium-ion secondary battery that is charged by an amorphous silicon solar cell located behind the dial. Depending on the electronic movement model, a fully-charged secondary power cell could run with no further charging anywhere from 30 days to 3,175 days (8.7 years)
  • Eco drive movement Thermo
    citizen Eco-Drive Thermo watches were introduced in 1999 and use the temperature difference between the wearer’s arm and the surrounding environment as a power source

Whats is Important when Choosing watches?

1. Price

Determine your price limit. You should know that:

more costly $1000 and higher less costly $300-700$ least costly $60 to $200
  • mechanical watches
  • precious metals (gold-plated and platinum watches), specially developed tungsten carbide or titanium
  • sapphire crystals
  • formal and designers watches
  • Breitling, Omega, Rolex, IWC etc.
  • automatic quartz
  • Caoutchouc, stainless steel,
    leather, titanium and carbon fiber
  • mineral glass
  • casual watches
  • Orient,  Botta Design
  • quartz watches
  • plastic and resin composites, base metals
  • plastic crystal
  • fashion and sport watches
  • Swatch watches

2. Style

  • Dress/Classic watches basic rules:
    - gold material,
    - plain and thin case,
    - a rotating bezel or any bezel with markings on it is out,
    - thick markings and hands with lots of tritium.
  • Designer watches basic rules:
    - designed by someone with a world-wide reputation and publicized designer’s look fairly unusual, but not always
  • Sports watches basic rules:
    - usually large,
    - bezels with prominent markings,
    - water-resistant to some degree,
    - nearly always have thick, luminous hands and markings.

     

    • Diver are inspired by the Rolex Submariner.
    • Pilot are inspired by the IWC Mark XV (or earlier).

3. Brand

  • Learn some facts about the watch manufacturer reputation yourself but not asking watch-store sales people in most cases they are staggeringly ignorant.
  • Ask your friends or relatives who already own the brands of watches you are interested in.
  • Post your brand questions on Internet forums dedicated to watches

4. Where to buy

  • The most prestigious watch brands are available only in authorized retailers, so online shopping isn’t always a right way of brand obtaining
  • Use internet watch catalog to choose a few watches you would like to wear
  • Go to the retailer’s official shop for details on the watch itself and its purchasing
  • Avoid internet retail sites and online stores

5. Right Size

  • If you are of a large stature – chose watches with large faces
  • If you are small of stature beware that the larger watch may make you look like a little boy wearing his daddy’s watch. So choose more compact watch models

6. Water Resistance

  • 100 meters deep water resistant will save your watches if they are worn during a workout or if you are caught in a rainstorm.

7. Watch’s Bracelet

  • Stainless-steel will last longer then leather. Plus, it can easily be worn with a business suit but can be paired just as easily well as with casual dress.

8. Watch life expectancy (parts)

  • The life of mechanical watches can be almost infinite.
  • Quartz watches parts often cannot be repaired, but must instead be replaced. The life of a quartz watch can certainly be limited by the availability of those parts.

9. Type of maintenance the watch will require

  • Mechanical (manual and automatic) watches should be serviced and cleaned according to the manufacturer’s recommendations or at least every three years
  • Quartz (battery operated) watches should be serviced when the battery is replaced ( 2-5 years, depending on the type of watch)
  • Lithium-iodine (LID) batteries watch have lifetime of ten years

What is NOT important when choose a watches?

1. Watch movement details

Really, actual mechanism inside the watch that makes them “move” is seldom particularly important if you are not buying watches over $10,000 or has some unique functions.

2. Notions of watchmaking

  • Don’t believe in the watch firms ads campaigns, reciting of their family horology business
  • very few watches under $20,000 are hand crafted in a quaint village in the Swiss Alps.
  • most are mass produced by machines in large quantities

3. Number of jewels inside

  • Jewels are not of value as they are small synthetic ruby elements used as extremely low friction pivots for a few critical parts of a watch mechanism
  • jewels do not add value to a watch as they worth only a few pennies
  • the appropriate number for any watch movement depends on the exact design and functions of the movement

These were our watch choosing tips for your confidence in the watch shop. Now you can easily determine calendar watch from chronograph and explain the difference between quartz watch and mechanical and their prices as well as learn important and less important moment in watch choosing.

We hope that with that useful information you could find right watches, perfectly fitting your style and … hand size.

Pleasant shopping