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Hi, I'm new to this whole watch thing and I'm looking to buy my first "nice watch." I have a humble budget of less than $500, but from reading the forum posts, it looks like there are some good options around. The watches that have really caught my eye so far are the Victorinox Swiss Army Classic Chrono (red face w/black dials), Debaufre Ocean-1 and GMT Ocean-1 (they told me they can put the red & black bezel on either model), and Invicta 9403.

As you can probably tell, I like the black & red look (I'll try to attach the pictures below). Does anyone know of benefits/drawbacks of these different models? I have already heard about the customer service and quality issues with Invicta, but their watches are so much cheaper than other brands. If you have suggestions of other watches, please let me know.

Also, if anyone has any info on the Victorinox Classic Chrono, I would appreciate hearing opinions because I can't seem to find any reviews of the watch.

Thanks, Tim
 

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A budget of $500 isn't "humble" at all - you can buy some very nice watches in that range.

I have a Steinhart Mach 1 (Debaufre was Steinhart) and I'd say it even compares quite favorably with a Rolex! :-! Someone else should be able to give you some insights on your other choices. Good hunting!:)
 

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From everything I've heard, I would go with Debaufre. Invicta is a very mass-market brand and although many people are happy with their Invicta watches, that brand tends to have more issues with quality control and are generally considred sub-par in that area. Victorinox is probably somewhere in between but I'm not as familiar with them.
 

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I'm with Joshua I will pick Debaufre Ocean-1. It is Swiss made, swiss auto movement, saphire crystal, solid end links with screws. I think is the best option in my opinion of course. (This model is on my wish list):-!
 

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Well, while Debaufre most likely makes great watches, I'm just much of a fan of homages, but if you are looking for a Rolex look a like, and have a budget of $500, I'd look no farther than Debaufre, good luck and welcome to WUS.
 

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For a red/black bezel, you might want to check out the Invicta 3076 "Scooby" with Swiss movement. For a little over $200 there is also the Japan only Orient King Master. Either SeiyaJapan or Higuchi Inc could ship you the Orient, which is a bit smaller than the Invicta.

I hope this helps!
Griff





P.S. While I don't own a Debaufre/Steinhart, I do own an Ocean7 G-1 GMT, which from what I understand is made by the same people. It is a really nice watch for the money.
 

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The QC and fit & finish on my Steinhart Mach1 is outstanding....My Victorinox 9G600 is excellent. It is well known that I do not have much good to say about Invicta as getting one that is not DOA or that does not have other problems leaves too much to chance!
 

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I have this one, the workmanship is great! Only the name has changed to Debaufre.
 

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Hi Tim, I'd have to agree with the other posters, that of the 3, the Debaufre is the best watch. Swiss quality, and good looks, make it the one I would choose, if those were my choices.

I do really like the Victorinox chrono, with the Rolex "looking" bracelet. If you wear black pants, and white shirts mostly, that watch would pop!
Zippofan had a good point about Orient. Their watches seem to be good quality for the money, made in Japan. You would be getting a nice watch, with plenty left over.

Let us know which one you select. :-!
 

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Well, while Debaufre most likely makes great watches, I'm just much of a fan of homages, but if you are looking for a Rolex look a like, and have a budget of $500, I'd look no farther than Debaufre, good luck and welcome to WUS.
I agree - for $500 I'd personally look to get more than a lookalike... If you haven't already, Tissot may be worth exploring - offers a lot for the money both quality and design wise.

Apologies if I come across as forcing my taste on you :-d:-d
 

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The Debraufe/Stenihart GMTs are great watches for the money, and IMO your best choice by far of the options you presented.
 

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...I have a humble budget of less than $500,...the Victorinox Swiss Army Classic Chrono (red face w/black dials), ...Also, if anyone has any info on the Victorinox Classic Chrono, I would appreciate hearing opinions because I can't seem to find any reviews of the watch....
Here's the Victorinox watch you like for "buy it now" price of $237:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Victorinox-Swiss-Army-Chrono-Classic-Quartz-SS-V-251148_W0QQitemZ230192838032QQihZ013QQcategoryZ31387QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem


I love my Victorinox watches, great case, original design, great quality:
 

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I agree - for $500 I'd personally look to get more than a lookalike... If you haven't already, Tissot may be worth exploring - offers a lot for the money both quality and design wise.

Apologies if I come across as forcing my taste on you :-d:-d
Pictures may be deceiving, especially when looked at quickly. I have a Rolex GMT Master II and while the "flavor" of the design is similar, as are many, many watches, in hand, they are quite different.

The Steinhart/Debaufre is larger, slightly different case style, different finish, the bezel is different and it has a much nicer bracelet!

I also have the Tissot PRS 516 Auto and the Seastar 1000 which are both excellent watches. Of the 2, I prefer the PRS.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I've decided to go with the Debaufre GMT Ocean-1. Thanks for all of the advice and suggestions--they really helped with my decision. I'll let you all know how it turns out.
 
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