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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, this is my first post here:-!

Im interested in a Day-date homage watch and have found watches from Sandoz, Alpha, Orient and Bulova. The problem is that I don't know too much about these brands, which is the best etc.

I have added some photos and prices below, and im curious about why the prices are different. Is it because of quality, or are some of them just overpriced?

Which brand should I choose?

This Sandoz Date-just is about $250USD


This Alpha Day-date is about $70USD


This Orient Day-date I've seen for about $75USD at the lowest


Belova Day-date. Don't know the price on this yet.
 

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There are some pretty big differences between those makers. There are three 'Sandoz' companies, since the trademark was allowed to be used by different entities associated with the original watch maker. I believe the one you show is Sandoz Singapore. They use movements from ETA (a large Swiss company), but they are the asian made ones (but still very good).

That Bulova looks like it is from before Citizen bought them out, and so it also uses the same ETA movement, but probably the Swiss made version. Bulova is an old American company, but it has changed hands several times, and was Swiss owned before being sold to Citizen a couple of years ago.

Orient make their own movements, and the watches are entirely made in Japan. They have a great reputation for value, quality and accuracy, but the movement in that one won't have hacking or manual winding, like the ETA ones. That one is from their "Standard Line", which doesn't have some of the features of their others, like solid steel link bracelets.

Alpha is a Chinese brand that uses mostly SeaGull movements. You can find out a lot about them in this forum. Hopefully, someone else will reply who actually has that watch.
 

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Orient make their own movements, and the watches are entirely made in Japan.
Just a note, I don't think that this is entirely correct. I believe the lower end models (and, actually, some of the mid-tier ones as well) are made in brazil, malaysia and some other out of japan factories, just like with seiko. - by no means should this put people off buying them, the factories all have the fabled Japanese quality control.

I would advise on getting the Orient. Cheaper than sandoz - better quality than alpha (probably better water resistance at any rate), and more stringent QC, which is the key here.

Get the orient. If you like the watch so much after that still, get the original Rolex
 

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Like has been said...each of the brands represent different things..

Alpha- Chinese watches/with Chinese movements...some have good luck with them, others not as much
Sandoz- You don't hear too much about them but like has been said...Sandoz is actually 3 brands with each representing a different price range/ movements/ country of origin (so to speak)
Orient- Japan company that uses nearly exclusively in house movements (sans some quartzs) That have watches from $50 to over $1000 (much like Seiko) and their quality would vary accordingly (or exceedingly as some may argue)
Bulova- Recently bought out by Citizen and now many are using Miyota movements which is cool...and some Bulova's are still using ETA (Swiss) movements but those are labeled Bulova/Accutron..

If I were to put them in order of favorites...

1. Orient 2. Bulova (for entering the US market with automatics) 3. Sandoz 4. Alpha...if for nothing else but spotty QC.
 

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I had another look at the PMWF store and I see that the Sandoz is a HK one, not Singapore. Not that that makes any difference. It does have a solid bracelet, but a mineral glass crystal.

The Bulova has a solid bracelet and sapphire crystal.

I'm usually an Orient booster, but I'm not as sure about this one. The folded bracelet and lower spec finish may feel pretty cheap.

If money weren't an issue, I'd get the Bulova. With budget as a factor, I'd probably go for the Alpha.
 

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Hello eteled (delete backwards :) ) and welcome to the forum.

Of the watches you listed, I would choose the Alpha. Not because of the price or because it is Chinese.

I wouldn't buy the Orient because it is gold tone. I wouldn't buy the Sandoz or Bulova because they have diamonds on the dial.

Just buy what you like!

Cheers
gigfy
 

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Of all of them pictured, I like the Orient best.

As manufacturers, Orient, Sandoz an Bulova rate about the same, Alpha rates lower in quality.
 

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Had the Sandoz sub but found the bracelet too thin for my liking...I would go with Orient. Had the M Force and some vintage divers...very good auto movements.
 

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eteled,

The Sandoz hasn't got day display, I thought you need that. I remember a few decades ago many manufacturers, from very "unknown" to very respected Swiss ones, produced day-date homages, they seem to be less common these days.

Like what Martin pointed out, if day display is not obligatory (as seen in your interest in the Sandoz) then there are indeed cheaper options. The wondrously named "Bagelsport" also has one with black dial and faux rocks as hour markers:



Even though it is a legal facet of an enterprise which is somewhat otherwise, it is certainly priced right as an everyday beater if you wish to treat it as such; at least you can use it to get a "feel" for the design first. The more respected MQJ brand has a somewhat funky one which may or may not appeal:

 

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Even though it is a legal facet of an enterprise which is somewhat otherwise....
And, exactly what is not legal?
 

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I like the Orient I have (the compulsory blue MAKO) it keeps very good time. I have to say for the money I would have to give the Bagelsport a try. I have read some good things about them. YOu might just end up with one that keeps good time. If not you are not out much.

One other thing to think about is the Seagull
M149S. They are quality product.

5692647.jpg


 

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And, exactly what is not legal?
There's an earlier long thread (which of course I cannot find) talking about the trials and tribulations of getting a Bagelsport watch; the seller kept sending watches which looked exactly the same except for "Rolex" brandings everywhere!
 

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There's an earlier long thread (which of course I cannot find) talking about the trials and tribulations of getting a Bagelsport watch; the seller kept sending watches which looked exactly the same except for "Rolex" brandings everywhere!
Ouch, I hope I will not get one of these...
Well, I'll see what will be delivered to my doorstep, and let you all know :)

Regards,

Martin
 

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Discussion Starter #16

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Wait until you get it and measure the lug width. They may be 20 mm, they my be 19 mm...
 

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eteled


Can I ask where you are seeing this Alpha for sale? I'm after the same watch but it's no longer available from Alpha.

Thanks

By the way I have and Alpha sub and have been completely satisfied. Looks great, run about + 30 seconds a day, hacking movement. Can't beat them for the price.
 
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