TGN is back this week with a brand new challenge episode in which Jason and James take a closer look at some of their favorite models from the Breitling as they both try to fulfill a $13,000 “budget” that highlights some of the best that this well-loved and sporty Swiss brand has to offer.
Great picks, guys. Breitling is a brand I don't think about often, but then I remember this watch or that one and I'm surprised at how many pieces speak to me personally.
Chronomat Automatic 36 (blue; no diamonds)- $4700
SuperOcean Automatic 36 (blue) - $3600
Endurance Pro (yellow) - $3150
If vintage is allowed...
Navitimer Cosmonaute - ~$5400
40mm Aerospace w/ gmt bracelet module (black dial) - ~$2900
@Jason Thanks for the heads up on Being James Bond. I had it in my watchlist and it disappeared from AppleTV+ before I had a chance to watch it!
After listening to this great episode, and cruising through their website, I'll be an outlier here and say Breitling is a company that doesn't really do it for me. Fine watches for sure, just not for me. Good thing they are out of my price range 😜
It appears that rubber straps with curved ends go for a pretty outrageous premium relative to two-piece nylon, straight-edged rubber, and even a lot of fine leather. Is that extra little curve worth it?
In euros, I'd get a Premier Duograh in steel with a blue dial (split second with manual movement and sapphire caseback) as a dressy option. Second watch would be a used 38mm black dial navitimer (time and date) as a more casual option, which go for about 2900 on the grey market (eta movement but chronometer certified). Interesting exercice:) grey market prices for Breitling seem very attractive
That's funny that James mentioned the Ikea Skadis bulletin boards. Our two teens swapped rooms over the holiday break. As part of that room swap, we replaced all of the furniture they've had since they were toddlers with new furniture from Ikea including three of those Skadis bulletin boards to go over their respective workspaces/desks. The accessories that Ikea has for them are pretty neat.
On an island with the following opinion but I really like the Endurance Pro...but only after having tried it on. Insanely lightweight and extremely accurate (but yes, it is a $3,000 quartz watch).
Used and under $2,000? I would make room in my collection.
To me, the essence of Breitling is Chronograph. I’m a math guy (Ph.D) and I am retro, so the idea of wearing a slide rule always appealed to me. I also appreciate authenticity. So Jason’s 806 is the obvious win. But I’m also on a military watch kick right now, so James’ AVI is also the obvious win.
As always, I enjoyed the episode.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Breitling recently. Given this challenge, I think I might spend $8.5k (or, let’s be real, $6k secondhand) and get the blue SuperChronomat 44 on the rubber strap.
I tried one of these on and found it shockingly comfortable. Fit my 7” wrist well (similar to my Turtle!) and was super impressed with the feel of both the bezel and the chrono. With the impressive water resistance, I think I could wear that watch anywhere and everywhere forever.
It’s likely just a dream for me. I like the trend toward smaller watches, but I still respect the energy of a big, mean, do-anything watch like that.
I was always turned off by the Travolta ads and the blingy Bentley models, but lately Breitling has put out some good stuff. For a 2 watch collection out of the new stuff, I'd choose the SuperOcean 46 black steel with the red gold bezel, and the Navitimer chronograph 41 (or the GMT 46 if I could twist the ADs arm). Agree on the SuperOcean font. I find it very charming.
Another great episode.
One of the first "nice" i.e. mechanical watches I lusted after was the Navitimer World (A2432212) with blue dial. Wanted one for years but couldn't afford it. Had a friend who had one and loaned it to me; absolutely too big for my wrist. Totally cured me of the itch. I like the idea of the smaller size re-edition, but the lack of a date is a deal-breaker.
I also very much like the Aerospace. My dream would be if they came out with a solar powered version; I hate changing batteries. I might pickup one on the secondary market; there is quite a bit of cosmetic variation available and I haven't quite settled on a favorite.
Another friend had a Colt, which looks and feels quite nice in person. Not my aesthetic, but a nice looking watch nonetheless.
Nice episode, thanks guys! James - do you have any other reddit rabbit hole recommendations? I’m a fan of r/battlestations (like you), r/buyitforlife and r/onebag if I ever need to kill some time.
I like these Challenges and although I like Breitling as a brand, I don’t think I will ever put my money towards one.
From the list of watches you two picked and mentioned I really like the Aerospace Evo in DLC-Coated Titanium. Such a cool looking watch but at $5000 USD/$6400 CAD and 43mm it’s a bit too much watch for me.
James, I totally agree with your opinion on the Doxa 600T. As an owner of the SUB 300 Carbon Aqua Lung US Divers, my most worn watch hands down, I was excited for the 600T. I managed to get in on the Time&Tide LE but was so disappointed with how it wore on my 6.75” wrist.
Where the SUB 300 wears amazingly well and sings on a nato, I found the 600T to be too chunky and with the way the case back protrudes, it sat awkwardly on my wrist. You’re absolutely correct, James, for a 40mm watch it felt all that and more.
I was throughly disappointed and tried my best to bond with it but it just didn’t work for me so I quickly put it up for sale. I’d only own one Doxa anyways and it will take quite the Doxa to bump the 300 Carbon AL off my wrist.
Great picks for the draft. I also own a first gen Aerospace, when it was labeled a Navitimer. The only thing I wish of it would be that I wish it had more water resistance. Other than that it's pretty perfect. I have a flight coming up and I'm having an internal struggle on which to wear; that or my Alpinist GMT.
Great episode, guys!! Live these "challenge" shows. *Warning* unsolicited episode idea incoming: I just picked up the new Garmin Fenix 7 and this is my first Garmin watch. I'm loving it so far, but a little overwhelmed with everything. I plan to use it for hiking, mostly, but also some biking, running, and swimming. I was largely sold on it from your positive comments and would love to hear a more detailed breakdown of how you use it, favorite features, etc. Thanks and keep it comin'!!
Recently helped a close friend out with finding a watch to gift her husband for his 40th birthday. She wanted to do a proper Swiss watch without breaking the bank. We ultimately decided on the Super Ocean Heritage 46 black dial. The recipient of the gift is a big guy, 6'10 and always preferred something on the larger side, even though smaller mm's is all the trend. He loved it! It was fun helping this friend through the process.
If I had to pick since Breitling has been in my mind a lot recently, I agree with Jason's first pick in the Navitimer Ref 806 Re-Edition. This watch is the ultimate of Breitling DNA. Just a classic and gorgeous watch. My other pick would be something unexpected but for some reason, I love the idea of taking this watch on some serious adventures and that would be the Endurance Pro in yellow. With it being quartz, it's just a cool piece that would love to be pushed to the limit. I do wish the price was around the $2K area as I feel it could be a perfect price point for something very different in the Breitling catalogue. Cheers!