The year 2015 is almost at a close, and we’d like to help wrap it up with an aBlogtoWatch watch buying gift guide – done, once again, a little bit differently. As a publication that tends to help consumers make choices about watches they want to purchase, we dislike the idea of arbitrarily limiting your buying options to a few timepieces that we feel just narrowly beat out others in any given list. So for that reason, we try to stay away from more randomly assorted gift guides that, frankly, also bore us to create.
What we’ve done for this holiday season’s gift guide idea was to ask various members of the aBlogtoWatch team to mention the first watch that comes to mind when presented with a particular question. For example, we asked the question, “What watch would you wear to impress Vladimir Putin?” (a known watch buff and all-around leader of Russia). Each of the questions we asked called for a different type of watch, and we included some of our favorite responses from the aBlogtoWatch team. It’s just a little way of getting into our watch nerd heads and having fun during the holiday season (where, apparently, rest and relaxation is but a myth).
Whether your budget for watch buying is modest or prodigious, you’ll find some interesting timepieces here in each (perhaps unexpected) category that the aBlogtoWatch team feels are worth mentioning – from those suitable for very ordinary occasions to those which might only occur in our fantasies. Please offer your own choices in the comments below if you feel you have some watch choice responses to compliment our own.
Beater Watch Worth Wearing
Let’s start with the trusty everyday watch, something you can knock around and not worry too much about because it isn’t that expensive. With that in mind, it’s also got to be designed well, reliable, and say something about the wearer. Here are our top picks for the “beater watch” category.
Ariel Adams: Magrette Manoa Pacific Professional (Reviewed here)
Matt Smith-Johnson: Seiko Spirit Smart SCED035 ‘Aliens Ripley’ Watch (Reviewed here)
Victor Marks: Orient Symphony (Feature article “Orient Dress Watches: The Best Budget Option?” Hands-on here)
David Bredan: Casio G-Shock Rangeman Camo
Watch That Would Impress Vladimir Putin
Moving on from an everyday beater watch, we take a look at 4 picks for watches that even a massively wealthy oligarch would give a second look. Vlad’s a well-known watch collector, and we think he would happily add these to his shiny, fabulously ornate watch safe.
Ariel Adams: Jacob & Co. Astronomia (Hands-on here)
The motion Sinn uses here is a self-winding ETA 2836-2 with a stop seconds operate. It operates in 28,800vph and has a 38-hour power reserve, which does seem somewhat less powerful than what I would expect from a watch equipped with such a critical purpose.In addition to the EMS-specific timekeeping apparatus, the Sinn EZM 12 boasts the ability to be easily disinfected alongside the rest of the medical devices in the helicopter cabin following a injury flight, by simply removing the strap (which is affixed to the case using a simple and tool-less quick-change method) and prying off the bezel with a flat blade or the watch’s included multi-tool. Exposure to blood, and also the requisite cleanup is just another day at work for a first responder — and this attribute well illustrates Sinn’s commitment to delivering a really professional-grade solution, even if the huge majority of us non-professionals get queasy at even the idea of blood on the watches.In keeping with the capability of the rest of Sinn’s EZM offerings, the Sinn EZM 12 Air Rescue is built with a 44mm Tegimented (hardened) steel case that is only 14mm in its thickest point — that is a little bit of an optical illusion, because its cushion shape and thick bezel suggest a wristwatch that wears much larger than it really does in person. Being water resistant to 200m and anti-magnetic, the circumstance is guarded from components both inside and outside the helicopter, making a pretty compelling solution for folks like Coast Guard rescue swimmers too. Its feature set is rounded out with other Sinn signatures, like the dehumidifying capsule cleverly tucked to the inner-bezel crown in 2:00. The watch ships in a presentation box that includes the multi-tool for removing the bezel, and executing any number of other useful tasks across the medical helicopter. The Sinn EZM 12 Air Rescue ought to be available shortly, with a price of $3,340.
James Stacey: MB&F Legacy Machine Perpetual Calendar Watch (Hands-on here)
Patrick Kansa: Greubel Forsey GMT Watch In Platinum (Hands-on here)
David Bredan: Montblanc Collection Villeret Tourbillon Cylindrique Geosphères Vasco Da Gama Watch (Hands-on here)
Flamboyantly Designed “Grandly Complicated” Timepiece
There is no shortage of flashy watches and there’s no shortage of highly complicated watches out there. What if you want both, though? Well, we decided to think up 4 watches that we think will get you both attention and horological admiration.
Ariel Adams: HYT H3 (Hands-on here)
David Bredan: Richard Mille RM 26-02 Evil Eye (Hands-on here)
Bilal Khan: Antoine Preziuso “Tourbillon of Tourbillons” Triple Tourbillon (Hands-on here)
Mark Carson: Ulysse Nardin Freaklab (Hands-on here)