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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
As we are all aware, there are many micro brands that sell online only. Unless you know someone who has one of the micro brand watches, the only way to get an idea of what they are like is scouring the internet for reviews and pictures.

On the other hand, there are some brands that still use the traditional business model of getting their watches into stores for you to look at and hold. Although the internet is good for research, only when you hold a watch will you get a true sense of what it is like and whether it is a good fit for you.

I find myself in the position of being ready to purchase another watch and I have a choice between 2 watches. The first one is available online only, and there are not that many reviews around for it. Even less wrist shots. Although the specs are published, I don't know exactly how it would suit me unless I bought it and got it sent to me.

There is another similar watch from a different brand that I have been to see at a dealer. It is a handsome watch, fits me well and parts will be widely available.
The thing is, it's about double the price of the online one.

So how much more would you be prepared to pay for a watch that has an online equivalent if you can look at it and purchase it in the same day, have a physical shop you can send it back to if there are any problems, and not have to worry about issues such as shipping and warranty returns?

$100?
$200?

Nothing at all - you would risk it and go online every time if it's cheaper?

Has anyone got and stories they would like to share of both positive and negative experiences of buying online with only reviews as a guide?

I'd be very interested to hear your opinions.
 

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I value knowing the watch.

I don't need to wear it but sometimes when I buy a watch online it doesn't fit me right, can be surprisingly uncomfortable, etc so I just sell it. No big deal.

I suggest you go for the $100 online with a note to self to be prepared to flip on ebay for a small loss. Minor gamble.
 

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Mr. Sboy- If you are wishing to buy a $4K-Rolex or Seiko model, would you not go to the Jewelers and try one on just to preview and see how it sits on your wrist? That would give you an idea if the watch is too small, or too big or just right-or just does not look as nice in store light as on a Web photo- before you plunk your pounds of Gold down and buy it. Now, if you own a Seiko diver, exactly like the one online that you are contemplating-for $100-200 dollars,what is the point of previewing that purchase? A Face to Face purchase is probably better for much higher priced watches. Also in most online Watch Sale Listings Online-Specifications-of watch height-diameter, watch band width,and sometimes weight-are the critical and telling Specifications to compare to what you own and feel is comfortable and acceptable for you.I've found the one,the two,the three, the four and the five and six,seventh and eighth Watch, just for me.And no more flipping watch's for me.Good luck in your hunt for the one watch for you.-Eli
 

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I don't have to wear or handle a watch prior to purchase. this would apply to whether the watch is $15k or $15. I usually know what I am looking at and how it would fit me when have an interest in a watch.

if a watch doesn't quite work, well, that is what the sales forum is for =)

<* shark >>><
 

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Krusty Olde Pharte
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In about 15 minutes I'm going to pre-order a watch from a micro-brand that only sells online. Production will start in about 60 days. This will be my first watch from this maker. Fingers crossed. Full payment is required at order.
 

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Every watch i've bought has been online as the outlets near me never seem to have the piece i'm after. I do look at the usual endless reviews on the forums, google images and youtube vids Aswell. And at the end of the day you can always send the watch back for a refund if your not happy with it or sell it for usually a small loss.
 

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As much as I'd like to be able to try on a watch before buying it and inspect it thoroughly by myself, since I get most vintage watches online I can't do that. If it's not what I expect, I return it or try get the required parts to bring it back to its original form.
 

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I look for the ability to return an online watch if It doesn't suit me even if I have to pay the return shipping . Of course I will try to communicate with the seller before hand .
As others have stated , I try to look at a similar watch at a retailer and talk to them about the watch ..look on line for a better price and the ability to return it , and even re-approach the retailer with the lower online price and see how close they can match the online price . If it's close enough I will go with the local retailer . As a good example , I was looking at a Citizen Blue Angels Eco-Drive watch ,got an online price and took it to the retailer . He could not match the price because of his overhead but did drop the price to a reasonable comparable level so I bought from him . Since than I have bought 2 more watches from him because he remembers me and and always gives me a good price . The last time I went into his shop I was just passing by and saw that the had the latest Satellite controlled watch on display . It retails for $1800 . He offered it to me for $1200 + tax . I hesitated but said no , I'm not ready to purchase yet . He quickly re-calcuted and offered it to me for $1200 flat because I'm a good customer , so I bought
it . I figured I saved on the value of this watch . He also always gives me Citizen Logo hats and t-shirts .
 

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well i bought a Chase Durer UDT 1000 and never handled it...they are quite pricey new...and hard to find in person...i agree i miss the stores where you can touch and feel them...but this seems to be the way things are done now...
 
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