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If you're only going to buy one luxury good for yourself, make it a nice watch.

Beginner's Guide to Major Watch Brands

Why buy a good watch? A luxury watch shows a degree of culture, draws on centuries of tradition, and is often more precisely made than the finest jewelry. Since serious, high-end watches start at about $1,500 - and many cost much more - do your homework before you make the investment.

How do the major watch brands compare to each other?

The actual relationships and who exactly is better than whom is highly debated among wristwatch aficionados. There are so many different attributes of each and so many different things that are important to each buyer or owner that a simple list of "the best" or attempts to rank the brands in detail would be fruitless.

So this guide is merely a starter to help the beginning watch buyer understand the range of brands available. Rolex is covered in more detail here, because they are the single brand that has the broadest public perception of excellence. They have become the yardstick by which most watch layman discussions of the high end watch brands go by.

Any mentions of specific brands in particular categories is intended as a general guide to get you started looking, but is in no way a definitive guide to all these brands have to offer. Beyond that, you will have to do more detailed research on the specific attributes of the watch and watch companies you find of interest to determine which are better for your specific wants and needs.

What are the major brands to look at

low end ($5,00 - $3,000) mid end ($3,000 - $10,000) high end ($10,000+)
tag heuer  ball omega jaeger lecoultre
swiss army cartier baume & mercier
tissot omega rolex
seiko raymond weil zenith
bvgari breitling  

Why should I spend money on a nice timepiece?

Having something nice on your wrist says a lot about you, also the style, brand and type of the watch can say alot about your personality too. Not to mention that women dig a man who has a really nice watch almost as much as someone who has a really nice car, at least the intelligent girls we know.

Having a really nice watch is also great for networking with the right people. The rich and powerful obviously have really nice stuff, and watches are no exception. When you're networking with a crowd of elite people having a really nice timepiece on your wrist can be a great ice breaker for starting conversations. Since other people with luxury watches are probably watch buffs, having knowledge about other high end watches other than the one you own can help you become buddy-buddy with people in this crowd.