After Baselworld 2017 rolled around I think I had officially given up on Swiss Tudor, at least as a consumer interested in seriously voting with my dollar and adding one of their products to my collection. By then, every possible ounce of creativity and variety had been squeezed out of the Black Bay line and to me, it seemed like an attempt by Tudor to simply shoehorn as many dissonant design variations as possible into the collection. Something has to stick, right?
These days it can be difficult to make an argument for the existence of more dive watches. That’s the bottom line. Sometimes it’s hard to see the point and between what the big brands are offering and the constant wave of ambitious Kickstarter start-ups, it all just seems like pointless noise after a while. What I am interested in, however, is seeing smaller brands work towards overcoming new challenges in a saturated marketplace – and it doesn’t get any more crowded than the space occupied by affordable dive watches.
Swiss Omega has a new version of the Railmaster Co-Axial Master Chronometer. The first Railmaster Co-Axial Master Chronometer was released last year alongside the widely popular Omega 1957 Trilogy watches. Needless to say, the Railmaster was largely overshadowed and overlooked by the famous trio of classic Omega reissues. Still, it doesn’t change the fact that the Railmaster is a great watch for the money.
When Swiss Rolex initially debuted the Oyster Perpetual Sky-Dweller watch collection at Baselworld 2012, the watch world acted predictably. That reaction was the hesitation that comes from nothing new as presented to a community of ultra-conservatives. Yes, watch collectors tend to be ultra conservative, which is one of the reasons why Rolex as a brand continues to do so well. Buying a Rolex isn’t just buying a tool to tell the time.
After spending a few weeks with the Mido Commander Big Date Watch, it’s really hard for me to think of a versatile mechanical dress watch that provides better value for less than $1,000. Being under the Swatch Group allows Mido to keep production costs in a place unachievable almost anywhere else and quality control standards consistent. Hugely popular in parts of South America, China, and especially Mexico, Mido really should be on the list of brands for anyone looking for that elusive three-figure to low four-figure entry level luxury watch.