Tudor vs Rolex – A Battle of Time

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As you fellow watch lovers already know what is a Rolex, its properties, the design, the movements, the brand’s achievements, prices, and where they are manufactured. Some of you might even be registered on a Rolex waiting list and probably some who got luckier might already have one on their collection of watches. 

What about Tudor? How familiar are you with the brand? Can you spot a Tudor when you see one? Do you know where Tudor watches are manufactured? How much does a Tudor cost?

To enhance your familiarity with the world of watches, and especially Tudor, read on.

Tudor was created as an affordable alternative for the ones who could not afford a Rolex. It is a subsidiary brand of Rolex that was founded in 1926, 21 years after Rolex’s first debut in the world of watches. And you would be surprised to know that Hans Wilsdorf, the man who created Rolex, was the one who also brought Tudor to the watch industry. The expression “Poor’s Man Rolex” was made for Tudor. Hans Wilsdorf wanted to bring a watch that had the same properties as Rolex but at a more affordable price tag. And this was all it took for Tudor to gain momentum. 

About Tudor Watches

Year of Foundation: 1926

Manufacturing Country: Switzerland

Owned by: Rolex

Watches sold per year: 200.000

Price Range: 3000 to 10.000 dollars

Tudor watches old advertisements

Tudor Achievements or World’s First:

Since their first appearance in the world of watches in 1926, Tudor has managed to create a reputable name for itself, with a little help from Rolex. The concept after whom Tudor was created – to be an affordable solution of Rolex, by preserving the quality, has been and still is the option of the watch lover’s community.

In terms of reliability, Tudor is as accurate as Rolex, counting -2/+2/sec/day on their finest models. Their achievements include a contract with US Navy and the French Marine Nationale where Tudor was assigned to supply them with watches from 1964 to 1982. And today, after Tudor’s brand relaunch in 2009, the company is capable of manufacturing their own reliable mechanical movements, a direct indicator of the reputation and seriousness Tudor has. Their advertising campaigns were handled by brand ambassadors like David Beckham, Jay Chou, Lady Gaga, and more. 

Best Tudor watch – Pelagos M25600TB-0001 

Tudor Pelagos

After taking a close look at some of the best Tudor watches, we decided to mention Pelagos model M25600TB-0001 as one of their finest divers watches a man can ever have. The model we picked comes in a blue dial with luminous hands and hour markers to help improve legibility in every environment you might find yourself in. A titanium unidirectional rotating bezel with matt blue ceramic is graduated over 60 minutes, and same as with the dial, white luminous material is used on it. The crown and the bracelet are also made of titanium. It is a great choice as being lighter and stronger than stainless steel makes the watch more convenient to wear without straining the wrist. 

The watch is powered by a self-winding mechanical movement that provides up to 70 hours of power reserve. It is Chronometer Certified by the COSC, meaning it belongs to a high-precision category of watches. 

Further features include a date window perfectly positioned at 3 o’clock, a helium escape valve, and 500 meters of water resistance. Not to forget about the iconic Tudor’s snowflake hand, a watch hand style developed by them. Price the last time I checked: 4000 to 5000 dollars

About Rolex Watches

Year of Foundation: 1905

Manufacturing Country: Switzerland 

Owned by: Hans Wilsdorf Foundation

Watches sold per year: 800.000 pieces

Price Range: 5000 to 50.000 dollars

Rolex watches old advertisement

Rolex Achievements or World’s First:

It would take days to write about Rolex achievements and inventions as there are so many. However, a brief description of Rolex patented inventions and achievements can be seen below. 

1910 – Rolex became the first watch brand to be certified by COSC

1926- The year when Rolex introduced the world’s first waterproof watch.

Continuing with the Helium Escape Valve, the two-time zone function, the world’s first watch with a day and a date window display, and more. A Rolex reflects the true watchmaking craftsmanship, inherited from their more than one century-old experience in the watch industry. Even small details like polishing, the dial colors, and shapes are the features that make Rolex one of a kind.  

 

Best Rolex watch – Oyster Perpetual Daytona Cosmograph

Oyster Perpetual Daytona Cosmograph

Our picks are individual attachments, as we know that Rolex or Tudor manufacture only great watches that last for ages. However, for the best Rolex watch, we have picked a model from their Daytona Cosmograph collection. Since its first launch in 1963, Rolex Daytona achieved to secure a permanent and undeniable status as a luxury watch. The Oyster Perpetual Daytona Cosmograph with reference number 116500LN you can see below features the iconic rotating bezel with a tachymetric scale that measures speed up to 400 miles per hour.

The 40mm case is home to a white dial where you can catch a glance of the chronograph subdials, the bullet-cut hour markers, and the hour hands. The self-winding mechanical chronograph movement is manufactured by Rolex, and it is responsible for the function of a chronograph accurate to within 1/8 of a second. The movement caliber 4130 provides up to 72 hours of power reserve, and its precision (-2/+2/sec/day) is certified by COSC as a highly accurate movement. Further features include a sapphire crystal glass, 100 meters of water resistance, and a ceramic bezel.

It is a great timepiece, and if you want to know the most expensive Rolex watch ever sold it was the Paul Newman’ Rolex Daytona. Sold for 17.8 million dollars at Phillips auction in New York on October 26th, 2017. 

 

Similarities between Tudor vs Rolex

Heritage

A century old parallelism has been seen between the two siblings from Switzerland. Tudor and Rolex belong to the same watch house and they have the same father (Hans Wilsdorf). Often both watches feature similar, not to say identical properties. From movements to designs, the identity of Tudor and Rolex is somehow related and at the same time separated. 

Rolex is the world’s leading luxury watch brand. We can all agree on that. On the other hand, Tudor has been and is a pioneer in the watch industry. By contributing with new designs and in-house manufactured movements, Tudor is a worthwhile timepiece as well. While the lowest priced model from Rolex is worth around 5000 dollars, expect to pay less for an entry-level Tudor. 

Designs

Tudor vs Rolex designs

Prior to 2009 speaking, Rolex and its sister line Tudor have been utilizing similar dials, crowns, bracelets, and crystal glasses. Rolex has been the founder of Tudor and as such, it was difficult for Tudor to create its independence.

In terms of design speaking, Tudor vs Rolex is a close match. Tudor was the best thing that could happen to Rolex as it allowed the second-mentioned to experiment with new materials like titanium, new bracelet styles, and unique dial colors, that would later or at the same time be seen in Rolex watches. Moreover, the similar packaging and the fact that Tudor watches are serviceable by Rolex further deepens their similarity and lets us know the technology used in both is the same. 

Differences between Tudor vs Rolex

Movements

Tudor vs Rolex movements

The main difference between Tudor and Rolex is their movements. In the past Tudor has been using mechanical movements from ETA or Valjoux, both manufactured in Switzerland under strict regulations set by COSC for supreme accuracy and quality. On the other hand, Rolex might have also used movements from ETA or Valjoux, but the majority of their timepieces are powered with in-house developed mechanical movements. It is worth to be mentioned that after Tudor’s relaunch in 2009, they started manufacturing their in-house movements, including here calibre MT5612, with 28,800 beats/hour frequency and 70 hours of power reserve. 

 

Prices

The cheaper movements incorporated from ETA or Valjoux caused the Tudor watches manufacturing cost to drop, and reasonably, the same happened with the price.

As mentioned, several times in this article, Tudor vs Rolex in terms of money is like day compared to night. It is all about the brand’s reputation in today’s watch marketplace and Tudor has managed to position itself among the best luxury Swiss-made watches. However, to be compared with Rolex takes more effort and I believe that the best of Tudor is yet to come. 

In Conclusion

Even though the subject of this article is Tudor vs Rolex keep in mind that the brands are not competing with each other, all the contrary. They have helped one another throughout the years by sharing wrist technologies and concepts to contribute to the betterment of their brand reputations.  Rolex has been supplying Tudor since its foundation with movements, cases, and bracelets. Some rare models from Tudor even have the Rolex name engraved somewhere in the case back or bracelet. However, after Tudor’s brand relaunch, we can all agree that Tudor is capable of standing on their own feet, with no support from Rolex. 

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