To Rolex, Panerai, luxury watch owners: AW expensive?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by Luba, Mar 17, 2015.

  1. Luba, Mar 17, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2015

    Luba macrumors 65816


    Apr 22, 2009
    I was talking with a luxury watch owner. He has a Rolex, Panerai, among others, and he feels the Apple Watch is reasonable priced. How do you feel about the price of AW? The most expensive watch I ever consider buying was for a few hundred dollars, so I'm coming from a different perspective.

    He felt for an extra $200 he would get the Watch over Sport because of SS and sapphire. He thought that was almost a no-brainer. Is sapphire that much better for scratch resistance and clarity? SS that much better for durability? Must be since SS is the standard luxury watch material. I don't think they make luxury watches in aluminum. I figured since Apple is an expert working with aluminum it would be good and durable. Maybe I'm wrong!
  2. Foss macrumors 6502


    Sep 11, 2008
    For someone in the income bracket of buying a Rolex or another premium brand watch, a few hundred dollars is an inconsequential amount of money. A few in that bracket will opt for the Apple Watch Edition, but for status symbol, I don't see anyone opting for a $10,000 Apple Watch over a Rolex, etc.

    Unfortunately, I'm not quite in that bracket yet, but I can afford the other two options comfortably. I am opting for the SS, because I don't like the matte finish on the sport watch. Plus living in NYC, I've learned a nice shiny watch will be noticed. Heck, I've seen plenty of women wearing Rolexes here even. Chunky watches are preferred for some women here too.
  3. JonMPLS macrumors 65816

    May 23, 2010
    Interesting question . . . I am not rich, but did buy a few higher-end mechanical watches years ago. In comparison, the AW is not expensive.

    However, there is a rather big difference. When I was buying a mechanical, I knew that, if I wanted to, I could keep it running forever. And they are still running and still in style. I will buy an AW just for fun, but it will be the first watch I am buying knowing that it will be obsolete in a couple years. So, from that perspective, it does look a little expensive to me.
  4. ninethirty macrumors 6502a

    Mar 1, 2006
    Most important thing you need to remember is that this isn't, no matter what anyone tells you, a luxury purchase. It's a nicely designed watch that's a gadget before anything else.

    Second, I own a Rolex Daytona (my 3rd Rolex) and I find the price of the sport to be a tiny bit high, watch fairly appropriate, and edition to be downright laughable.

    The Sapphire on my 3 Rolex have never cracked or scratched. Stainless steel is hard to say. The metal Rolex uses is 904L. I believe that's specific to them, and it does scratch over time. Any watch enthusiast will tell you that's a good thing - it helps make the watch yours. The Apple watch IS going to scratch. The links on the SS band ARE going to scratch. If Apple provides any decent kind of servicing options, they'll let you buff them them whenever you want at a cost, but you want to be careful not to do it too often or you'll thin out the bracelet and case. Every 3 years or so. Probably because of the technical nature of this device, you'll be replacing it sooner than that anyway.

    My 2 cents.
  5. Switchback666 macrumors 68000


    Nov 16, 2012
    IMHO I think it's priced OK, I'm a breitling guy so I really don't care about depreciation.
  6. FlatCable macrumors member

    Mar 17, 2015
    He probabily doesn't know what an IonX glass is...

    Sapphire is a bit more scratch resistant, but breaks more easily than IonX.

    Zirconia is a bit of a luxury.

    Aluminium vs Steel?

    If if you scratch aluminium, it's there forever (Apple's aluminium is not easy to scratch though, because of the texture)

    If you scratch polished steel like on the Apple Watch, you can always polish it back to make it look like new.

    Steel is also heavier, which is obviously bad, but it's seductive ;)
  7. matrix07 macrumors 601


    Jun 24, 2010
    My wife has Panerai. Not only she thought Apple Watch SS is not expensive, it's also not "big". :p
    She's not buying the Edition though. Ha. Ha.
  8. telefono macrumors 6502


    Dec 17, 2007
    I'm getting one of my Swiss Made watches serviced and it's costing me $1200 so the cost of the SS Apple Watch for me is not expensive at all.
  9. chrise2 macrumors 6502

    Sep 17, 2012
    I'm getting the $349 version as I see it being outdated in a year or two. If the Apple watch matures to a point where I see it being useful for 5 years, then I'll splurge on the fancier ones. Or if the resale value proves high enough. :)
  10. Mildredop macrumors 68020

    Oct 14, 2013
    What is SS?
  11. ninethirty macrumors 6502a

    Mar 1, 2006
    Stainless Steel

  12. illcoolz macrumors member


    Sep 12, 2014
    I personally own a few high end watches, including a Rolex and a Omega, and I think the Apple Watch prices are really not that bad at all, considering the high quality materials they are made out of, and the quality of the strap.

    The Watch Edition though, is another story. I personally wouldn't buy the Edition, because I would definitely rather buy another high end watch. The Edition is definitely for the people who can spend that kind of money without thinking twice.

    The only issue with the Apple Watch, is how frequently they will be updated, and if they're going to build a collection as time goes buy, or they'll get rid of the older model and bring a newer model.

    I am definitely gonna get the SS either way, so it's cool.
  13. Menel macrumors 603


    Aug 4, 2011
    Not even comparable.

    An Apple Watch is expected to be usurped next year with Apple Watch 2, with new features. Apple Watch 1 will tank in value and desire. A $350 Apple Watch2 will out-spec a $15k Apple Watch 1.

    In 4-5 years the battery will be maxed out on cycles, and may or may not even be able to connect to your new Phone.

    For these reasons a 18k Apple Watch is the ultimate statement in flashy wealth and disposable income.

    None of these 3 major issues are a factor with a Rolex.
  14. durangojim macrumors regular

    Jul 31, 2013
    I've been a mechanical watch lover for the past 20 years and am very lucky that I'm in a profession that allows me to buy them without too much sacrifice. I tend toward Rolex and Panerai (bought my first Panerai back in 1998 when I was able to get one new for $1700 with a discount, those were the days) that are more tool watches than anything. My daily driver is a newer Rolex Explorer II with a cool complication that lets me advance the hour hand independently of the minutes and has 24 hour hand that points to my home timezone. It's great when travelling. I don't worry much about getting scratches on it or one of my other daily's - a Panerai. These watches are tools and meant to be used, not babied. I do have a gold Rolex which I wear maybe 4 times a year only at formal functions. Back to the question about the Apple Watch. I'm excited to buy one as a tool. I don't like to carry my phone with me in my office as I feel it's rude to constantly be checking if my wife texted, or if I have an email, etc. Having something on my wrist that could notify me discretely would be of great benefit to me, especially if you can't hear the "taptic" feedback like you can a vibrating phone in your pocket. The cost for the sport and steel model watches are fine. I'll probably get the steel on the rubber band and hope that better 3rd party straps come out similar to what the market is like with Panerai. I have no interest or use for the Gold models because I'm not interested in showing people how much money I have. I'd rather spend that money on another high end mechanical watch and be able to appreciate the engineering and craftsmanship that went into that. All of these watches are things I can leave my kids when I'm long gone. Can't say the same about the apple watch.
  15. ninethirty macrumors 6502a

    Mar 1, 2006
    Perfectly put. People around here are convinced that anyone who can afford the Apple Edition will just immediately buy it, because hey, that's what rich people do with their money; throw it around, regardless of whether or not it's actually worth it.

    I assume you've got the newer Explorer II with the orange 24 hour hand? When I bought my first Rolex it was in between the Explorer II (red hand at the time) and the GMT. Went for the GMT in the end, but they're both beautiful watches!

  16. durangojim macrumors regular

    Jul 31, 2013
    Thanks, it is the new Explorer II with the Orange hand. It's my first white faced Rolex and I love it. The GMT is an awesome watch, a Pepsi dial was my first Rolex and I have a special place for it with it's history. As wierd as it sounds I have an emotional connection to many of my watches, something I don't think will ever happen with an apple "watch".
  17. bnorthro macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2010
    I have a Breitling Avenger Seawolf that I wear daily and a handful of Nixon watches that I rotate through occasionally as well. IMO, the Apple Watch (both Sport & Edition) are reasonably priced, the Edition is kinda silly but I understand why they did it and I'm sure they're going to sell a lot of them.

    I think the $200 upgrade to SS & saphire is totally worth it. My Breitling sapphire is perfect after 4 years of hard use, a few of my Nixons have glass crystals and they're scratched up after much less use.

    I also disagree with a lot of the opinions I see around these boards that the Apple Watch is thick or large or too heavy. I don't think that Apple is going to be changing the form factor up every two years like the iphone.
  18. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    That's a great point. I don't think people who don't own a luxury watch realize it's not maintenance free & has to be periodically sent back to Swizterland to be cleaned internally and some times rebuilt to remain functional, & neither are inexpensive.
  19. bnorthro, Mar 18, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2015

    bnorthro macrumors member

    Sep 2, 2010
    My 5 year recommended maintenance is coming up for my Breitling later this year. I was curious about cost (not listed of course, ha) and checked out their website. This is a pretty cool video for anyone interested, and it makes me feel a little bit better about what they charge...

    Breitling Mechanical Chronometer Maintenance
  20. hallidc macrumors 6502


    Sep 26, 2013
    In my personal opinion the AW is reasonably priced. Although named "Apple Watch", it has serves as more than just the functions of a watch.

    Although owning 2 Rolex models now, I myself would not opt to purchase an AW on release. Even being an Apple sucker, this is one Apple product I'm holding back on. More of a traditional watch wearer and have no issue pulling my phone out to check notifications, etc.
  21. ripper998 macrumors regular

    Jun 19, 2010
    Here is the thing, how many of you are going to not upgrade in 1-2 years to the Watch 2 or 3? Your Rolex or Breitling (my fav) you have had for years because they don't change as much over time. This is an electronic computer device which will degrade in value and performance over time. Personally, the Apple Watch prices are ridiculous.
  22. melman101 macrumors 68030

    Sep 3, 2009
    I, personally, don't think it's ridiculous. I'm sure you'll be able to get a new battery, and it will function as a watch for YEARS. So if you want it as a watch, it will work. Yes, a new watch will come out with new features, but does that make your old watch stop telling time? Does a new Rolex automatically make your old Rolex obsolete?

    Sure, this is a different case, but if you look at this exclusively as a watch, I'm sure it could last quite a bit.
  23. kerosene macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2008
    Who'll want to charge it every night if all it can do is show the time?
  24. melman101 macrumors 68030

    Sep 3, 2009
    You don't have to charge it every night if it's just displaying time.

    I bet if you put it in Power Reserve mode when it's fully charged, it would last for days.

    I mean, it automatically puts it in power reserve mode when the battery gets low enough, and then it lasts for 72 hours.

  25. scott99 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 30, 2007
    For $350, the aluminum 38" sport (crappy band) is WAY overpriced. The one I would want is a SS 42" with a SS band, that cost $599. I consider that overpriced for a gadget, I don't consider any smart watch a REAL watch, basically just a toy/gadget. You'r basically getting a quartz watch (a watch with a battery is a quartz watch) that you have to charge. I refuse to buy a quartz watch for over $200, the prices that Apple is charging is in automatic watch territory. Automatic watches are more prestigious because there is a lot of craftsmanship that go into good ones, even ones that cost $350. AND, you never need a battery.

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