Bulova Watches – Legendary Precision
If you know anything about keeping time, you’re likely to be familiar with Bulova watches. The company was founded in New York in 1875, but did most of their manufacturing in Switzerland. They’ve long been innovators, both in terms of timekeeping technology and in advertising.
They introduced the first truly precise electronic watch and continue to make high quality timepieces to this day. They are now part of the Citizen group, and many of their models today feature Japanese quartz movements.
Read on for the full Bulova watches review.
You’ll find the watches are well built, rugged timepieces. Many of their sports models are water resistant to 200 meters or more, and their cases are stainless steel. Their timepieces are renowned for their precision, and you should reasonably expect to get decades of use with proper care.
The company originally used mechanical Swiss movements exclusively, later augmenting that product line with electronic models. Today, Bulova watches are sold with either Swiss mechanical movements or Japanese quartz electronic movements. Both are high quality, reliable mechanisms. During the 1960s and 1970s, the company used a non-quartz electronic movement called the Accutron which is quite collectible today.
This is a company that has been among the leaders in innovation since the time of its founding. The company was the first to introduce mass production in high end timepieces and among the first to use mass-media advertising, including purchasing the first paid television commercial in the United States.
In 1960, they introduced their Accutron line, a series of models that used a tuning fork that vibrated 360 times a second to ensure accuracy. This watch had a then-unheard-of ability to maintain accuracy to within about 30 seconds per year.
Their Spaceview model had no face, per se, and allowed the wearer (and onlookers) to see the mechanism and the tuning fork. Today, the company makes watches using an ultra high frequency quartz crystal which vibrates 262,000 times per second, with accuracy to within 10 seconds per year. As a bonus, this line of watches, known as The Precisionsist, has a second hand that moves smoothly, rather than jerking once per second, as most other second hands do.
As with most timepieces from companies with long histories, these watches have rather traditional styling, favoring black, silver and gold as their primary colors, though there are a few subdued blues and greens available. You’re not going to find digital displays, plastic straps or cases, or rainbow colors in their product line.
They concentrate on what is obviously their strong suit – austere, solemn, elegant timepieces that look like they mean business. They do have a Diamond line that includes some rather flashy evening wear looks, and of course, they have sports models with chronometer features.
Displays are strictly analog. Their Accutron II line includes a couple of models with clear faces so that you can see the internal workings, though they no longer use the tuning fork for timing. Bands are available in rubber, leather and in gold and silver bracelet styles.
The brand is well built and most of their models today use battery-operated quartz movements, so they will likely require little in the way of maintenance, aside from replacing the battery every couple of years. As fine timepieces, they should be stored in a cool, dry place and away from hard surfaces that may damage or scratch the unit.
Keep away from extremes of temperature or caustic chemicals, of course. If you have a sports model, you may wish to have a jeweler examine it every couple of years to make sure the water resistance seals remain intact.
Your purchase comes with a three year warranty against defects in workmanship and materials. This is a bit better than average, and given their build quality, you’re not likely to have to worry about your timepiece failing during the warranty period. Extended warranties may be available for purchase from your retailer at the time of sale; ask your jeweler about this if you’re interested in a longer warranty.
For such high quality products, prices are fairly reasonable, starting at a fairly inexpensive $200 or so and working up to about $2000. Occasional limited edition models may sell for more. Most of their product line falls into the $300-$600 range, making them quite affordable as luxury watches go.
It won’t surprise you to discover that Bulova watches are quite collectible, especially their vintage Accutron units, which were sold from 1960-1977. These, along with out of production and limited edition models, will sell for premium prices on the collector’s market.
While we’re not recommending that you purchase as an investment, they’ve held up pretty well in price over the years. If you buy one today and it turns out to be worth more tomorrow, then you’ve clearly come out ahead and made a good investment.
You can find the brand for sale at fine jewelry shops, and at high end department stores. You’ll also find them for sale online at a number of retailers. Their product line is rather large; they have close to 200 models available at the moment, so it’s not likely that you’re going to find any single retailer who has it all, and that’s especially true of their limited edition items, for which you might have to shop around a bit. All in all, the brand isn’t particularly hard to locate, either online or off.
If you timepieces with a rich history of innovation and quality, Bulova watches would be a good choice. They offer a broad collection of watches with interesting features, classic looks and incredible precision and reliability. They come with a good warranty, and their pricing is rather moderate as luxury watches go. If you buy one today, you can reasonably expect it to last for your entire lifetime. All in all Bulova watches represent a good buy and we can highly recommend them.