In this video, two watches are looked at – a $30 dollar Timex Expedition and a $300 Hamilton Khaki. Although different in price, the watches are very similar in design. You can use this comparison as a springboard for a larger discussion of how the value of a product depends on the person doing the assessment – just look at Invicta watches and the subjectivity of their value. This type of comparison a “scales of value” discussion. If a person doesn’t value a costly feature of a product, then ultimately the expense of the feature is not worth it.
As far as these two watches, the Hamilton watch is better manufactured for a number of reasons. For starters, the hands of the Hamilton show more precision, and is a good comparison to some of the higher quality Invicta watches.
Furthermore, the casing of the Hamilton is less bulky, which can often be more likable (Invicta watches for men tend to be quite bulky, however; but this is part of their appeal). Although the movements of both watches were probably designed for bigger casings, the Hamilton casing looks better.
Consumers like the clean and elegant design and printing of the dial of the Hamilton, and feel that the Timex dial design is less “tidy” and “crisp”. The crystal of the Hamilton is more likely to shatter than the crystal of the Timex, but less likely to scratch, which is more important in the long run.
As far as design specifications, people often prefer the back of the Hamilton, which is held on to the watch with small screws, making it more secure than the snap-on back of the Timex.
The strap on the Hamilton is of much higher quality. The Hamilton strap is a stitched together out of multiple pieces of leather, whereas the strap of the Timex is thin, canvas and likely to fray.
You find the polished butterfly clasp of the Hamilton superior to the less sturdy clasp on the Timex. The Hamilton strap is curved to fit the wrist, whereas the Timex strap is straight and initially stiff.
Consumers like the mechanical winding mechanism of the Hamilton watch, which you say is smooth, crisp and precise when setting the time and date. This leads to a discussion of preference to mechanical movements in timepieces, as opposed to automatic.
Mechanical movements are more sustainable because they can be maintained and repaired. Also, you feel that since the mechanical movement is directly controlled by the user, it makes the user more autonomous and enhances value.
By contrast, you find the winding mechanism of the Timex watch – which is not mechanical – to be less precise and efficient. A common complaint is that it is hard to change the date.
Thr Hamilton watch is Swiss, which has a long tradition of quality craftsmanship in timepieces. The Swiss used to make the standard Invicta watch, until the trademark was bought by an American business and the construction outsourced to Chinese manufacturers. The movements of the present-day Invicta watch, however, is still Swiss.
Despite all this, the watches are roughly the same in terms of practical functioning. Both are comfortable on the wrist, for example and tell time accurately and reliably. In fact, the Indiglo feature of the Timex – which the Hamilton does not have – is being a plus.
Despite the practical functioning of the two watches being similar, the Hamilton has a few less tangible benefits. For example, the Hamilton watch has a mechanical movement as opposed to the quartz movement of the Timex. Compare this to the automatic movement of many Invicta watch styles.
A mechanical movement can be fixed when broken, which makes it valuable in a world where more and more consumer items are disposable. An automatic movement is motion-dependent, and employs rotational dynamics to power the hands of the watch – based on the movement of the wearer.
Many people value the Hamilton because of its “human” value. The watch is based on a design of a type of watch used historically by soldiers, while there is no real story or lineage behind the Timex.
There is a philosophical aside about this aspect of value in watches; how a watch becomes more valuable if it’s the same type worn by an astronaut or by an actor in a movie, for instance. This, of course, is the rationale behind the Invicta watch signing of former football standard Jason Taylor, and the release of his own line of elegant timepieces.
In conclusion, the Hamilton watch is ultimately more valuable not because of practical functioning, but rather because it’s mechanical and has more intangible “human” value because of its lineage. As a guide, it can be used as a benchmark to discern the true, “intrinsic” value of any particular Invicta watch you have – some are in under a hundred dollars, others are multiple hundreds and have many things in common with medium-range Hamiltons.