Author Topic: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??  (Read 128404 times)

Offline Enkidu

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Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« on: September 10, 2012, 06:37:43 PM »
Dear members,

It has always been my opinion that Officine Panerai is not a watchmaking company but a just fashion house like DKNY, Dior, ...etc.

Panerai watches are all more about looks + aesthetics. Panerai lovers' obsession with the leather straps and the multitude of companies making straps for these watches partly support this view. When the watches do not come with see-through casebacks, I have seen photos of the movement underneath being not just undecorated, but downright raw and rough. This is evidence that the company is more concerned about cosmetics than the actual performance of the watches themselves (considering the movement is the heart of a watch).  Companies like Stowa and Steinhart (or even Sea-Gull) have more self-respect than these Italians.

Considering their sizes, they look awkward as dress watches. Whilst some models have rotating bezel for diving, the majority don't - hence although these watches are claimed to be rated to 300m, they are practically useless as diving watches. In fact, it is not entirely clear which genre these watches belong to, except that they function as strong fashion statements for young people who want to appear bold and confident.

Their sale strategy (with countless special editions) shows they are not in the business of making good watches, but are here to play with human emotions and lust for exclusivity.

Let the discussion begin!!!

   

Offline TheHobbit

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #1 on: September 10, 2012, 07:08:14 PM »
Basically let's address the strap issue. The basic design of the watch in itself allows for an easy change of the strap. Best of all, the watches (most) comes with the tools to facilitate the strap change. The new quick change mechanism offers, name sake, quick change and reduces the chance of scratching or damaging the watch case in the process. Even the old screw type system, makes it easy to change straps. So, does this make the watch a fashion brand?

Other watch brands may come with leather straps, but is the strap change easy and is it fool proof? Are the tools provided? What are the chances of you damaging or scratching the case or losing the spring bars in the process? Could these be the reasons that prevent or hinder other companies or the owners from changing the straps or bracelets? Could it be the fact that the watches are traditionally fitted with metal bracelets and not leather straps be a reason and the opposite true for panerai?

Offline hanz079

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #2 on: September 10, 2012, 07:14:07 PM »
I would have to start by saying Panerai is actually very rich with history.
10 years ago, I would very much like to own one.
But now, at the current prices and the milking of SE and flipper taxes and artificial drumming up of demand at p.com, I would stay away for now.

Perhaps when the brand implode and when the dust settles, they will realise that Panerai is actually meant as cult tool watches and not what they are trying to position now. Which is pricing above Rolex.
Of course if the demand is there, they will flourish... but to me... it's a bubble waiting to burst.
Real collectors are slowly moving themselves away from the brand and now demand is mostly supplied with young noob money.
No problems there actually.

As to are they a fashion brand? I would have to say no.
Straps are only an extension of the enjoyment of Panerai watches and not meant to be viewed as a fashion accessory.
But I do understand where you're coming from.
I myself have seen small wrist (ladies even) strapping 47mm pams and to me they look ridiculous, comical even... but as long as the wearer's enjoying it, who am I to disagree.

Now before I put on my flame jacket, I have no intention of starting a flame war.
Whatever stated above is my opinion and mine alone.
I have friends that own multitude of pams and are proud... good... more power to them
Do I want one? Maybe... if sensibly priced.

Exclusivity is one thing but I am sure that we all have seen things being overpriced as the demand is still there only to implode when things go too far and left unchecked. Will Panerai be one? Only time will tell.
Terrenceterrence "seriously, i think buying a watch for it's secondhand value is like getting married and thinking about divorce at the back of your mind."


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Offline sm

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #3 on: September 10, 2012, 07:17:25 PM »
Bro, I admire your courage, this debate is long overdue.

Honestly I think mwf is one of the few blogs(or the only one except paneristi blog) that elevates the status of panerai to being 2nd to Rolex(the recent voting) in the same category. Now that is serious matter in any independent watch forum.

Tq
(i have two but since sold one. Keeping the black seal)

Offline pexus

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #4 on: September 10, 2012, 07:33:16 PM »
Panerai has always been an enigma to me..been reading much about the negatives....the pricing, the seemingly milking the cash cow strategy of producing new models (same same but still different...as some of us at MWF likes to call it..or is it ...different but actually same same?), etc, etc.

But why an enigma then? I just love the looks and appearance of the watch.....No Brad Pitt or Roger Federer face in the magazines for a Panerai ad..No happy family wearing the watch running through the meadows...No picture of a sexy model with a low V cut ......
All we have is just the name and the watch dominating the advertisement pages...  Why? I think Officine knows..the luminor/radiomir casing. the simple 3,6,9..markers, the sandwich, straps....they just have their own unique ways of luring people who like watches...

Personally, I wont label them as fashion house..because to be fair to them, they just sell watches.  Enigmatic watches...
`Learning to appreciate my watch as a tool, and not some fancy branded jewelry'

Offline dpkong

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2012, 07:36:00 PM »
No love for Panerai at all (or yet??).

1. They all look the same.

2. They're mostly too large (for me that is).

3. I fail to understand the rave and rant on a strap.

4. They're pricing themselves above Rolex and I do wonder if that is realistic.




Offline JPSP

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2012, 07:44:53 PM »
No love for Panerai at all (or yet??).

1. They all look the same.

2. They're mostly too large (for me that is).

3. I fail to understand the rave and rant on a strap.

4. They're pricing themselves above Rolex and I do wonder if that is realistic.

actually i can't keep up with Pam...sometimes the models look the same and i wonder at times how one can recognize this model from that?


 

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2012, 07:45:01 PM »
Basically let's address the strap issue. The basic design of the watch in itself allows for an easy change of the strap. Best of all, the watches (most) comes with the tools to facilitate the strap change. The new quick change mechanism offers, name sake, quick change and reduces the chance of scratching or damaging the watch case in the process. Even the old screw type system, makes it easy to change straps. So, does this make the watch a fashion brand?

Other watch brands may come with leather straps, but is the strap change easy and is it fool proof? Are the tools provided? What are the chances of you damaging or scratching the case or losing the spring bars in the process? Could these be the reasons that prevent or hinder other companies or the owners from changing the straps or bracelets? Could it be the fact that the watches are traditionally fitted with metal bracelets and not leather straps be a reason and the opposite true for panerai?

The ease of changing strap and tools being provided are in fact evidence that this is just a fashion watch. It lends the message that the owner is expected will be changing the strap often, not so much as to suit different use, but the desire to change the strap more frequently than the lifespan of the leather strap to suit his desired look and mood. Tools are therefore provided. It's a bit like those colourful fashion watches from Benetton in the 1990's with DIY bezels and strap change to suit the wearer's T-shirt.   

Offline TheHobbit

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #8 on: September 10, 2012, 07:48:44 PM »

The ease of changing strap and tools being provided are in fact evidence that this is just a fashion watch. It lends the message that the owner is expected will be changing the strap often, not so much as to suit different use, but the desire to change the strap more frequently than the lifespan of the leather strap to suit his desired look and mood. Tools are therefore provided. It's a bit like those colourful fashion watches from Benetton in the 1990's with DIY bezels and strap change to suit the wearer's T-shirt.   

As are the lug holes on a Rolex? Much easier, even with a toothpick......

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #9 on: September 10, 2012, 08:06:12 PM »
As are the lug holes on a Rolex? Much easier, even with a toothpick......

Yes, it's easy on the old Rolex with the lug holes. But (like you admitted yourself earlier above) no tools provided (except for the older SD) and the fear of scratches and losing spring bar. Rolexes (except the Prince and Cellini) all come in metal bracelets. Even with the lug holes, owners are afraid of scratching the watch when removing the end-pieces. Remember that the older end pieces all have "legs" pressing against the lugs unlike the SEL of present. More importantly, Rolexes are just not designed to be worn on leather straps. The PAMs are entirley the opposite. They are meant to be worn on leather straps. OP (being Italian) understands the allure of the romantic leather with its multitude of texture and colour, unlike the durable but monotonous metal bracelet.

   
« Last Edit: September 10, 2012, 08:09:36 PM by Enkidu »

Offline TheHobbit

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #10 on: September 10, 2012, 08:17:08 PM »
As are the lug holes on a Rolex? Much easier, even with a toothpick......

Yes, it's easy on the old Rolex with the lug holes. But (like you admitted yourself earlier above) no tools provided (except for the older SD) and the fear of scratches and losing spring bar. Rolexes (except the Prince and Cellini) all come in metal bracelets. Even with the lug holes, owners are afraid of scratching the watch when removing the end-pieces. Remember that the older end pieces all have "legs" pressing against the lugs unlike the SEL of present. More importantly, Rolexes are just not designed to be worn on leather straps. The PAMs are entirley the opposite. They are meant to be worn on leather straps. OP (being Italian) understands the allure of the romantic leather with its multitude of texture and colour, unlike the durable but monotonous metal bracelet.

 

As you rightly said, panerai are designed to be worn with leather straps. The fact that the tools are provided (or not) does not mean that the owners will change the straps earlier or will change it constantly. We cannot infer that the easy or availability of straps makes a watch a fashion brand, don't you agree?

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #11 on: September 10, 2012, 08:18:00 PM »
I would have to start by saying Panerai is actually very rich with history.


Only a history of supplying watches (fitted with movements made by others) EXCLUSIVELY if I remember correctly to the Italian military who lost big time in the war.

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #12 on: September 10, 2012, 08:24:02 PM »
As you rightly said, panerai are designed to be worn with leather straps. The fact that the tools are provided (or not) does not mean that the owners will change the straps earlier or will change it constantly. We cannot infer that the easy or availability of straps makes a watch a fashion brand, don't you agree?

The strap issue is just one of the few factors I cited in my post above. Going back to the rich history of OP brought up by Hanz, how many Panerai lovers actually know about the history BTW? Anyone care to guess??

Offline ckcspice

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #13 on: September 10, 2012, 08:33:41 PM »
have owned n flipped a few pams....the design didnt stick with me for long...only have a 292 now...but the flipping itch has started again, its looks r starting to lose touch with me...guess this will b my last pam if i really decide to let it go... :Blue:

Offline hanz079

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #14 on: September 10, 2012, 08:38:45 PM »
As you rightly said, panerai are designed to be worn with leather straps. The fact that the tools are provided (or not) does not mean that the owners will change the straps earlier or will change it constantly. We cannot infer that the easy or availability of straps makes a watch a fashion brand, don't you agree?

The strap issue is just one of the few factors I cited in my post above. Going back to the rich history of OP brought up by Hanz, how many Panerai lovers actually know about the history BTW? Anyone care to guess??
Glad you bring up the history part.
Previously on p.com... there were tons of knowledge about Panerai history.
They were helpful ppl... whatever info you needed is all there... just ask.
Now? After the fiasco of the mods making use of their position to milk their own SE... long time Panerai purists have left.
Some are not happy with the direction of the brand.
Serious collectors have lost their love for the brand and felt that the real Panerai lovers are being marginalised.
Now, it is all about who have the the latest models, the hardest to get SE and the game that they play hunting pieces down.
Not my kind of game.
And regarding to your question of how many Panerai lovers actually know about their history? Not many at this day and age I'm afraid.
Terrenceterrence "seriously, i think buying a watch for it's secondhand value is like getting married and thinking about divorce at the back of your mind."


watchionable.blogspot.com

Offline TheHobbit

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #15 on: September 10, 2012, 08:46:59 PM »
I would have to start by saying Panerai is actually very rich with history.


Only a history of supplying watches (fitted with movements made by others) EXCLUSIVELY if I remember correctly to the Italian military who lost big time in the war.

Winning or losing a war does not impact the brand, Seiko, Lange, iwc, tutima, and lots of other brands were in the war, makes no difference to me. The owners of the brands were proud to support the campaign (rightly or wrongly), their calling at that time. If we were concerned about the war, would you be driving a ford or wearing that Hugo boss suit?

Anyway, the watches were also issued to the Germans, and not limited to watches, but compasses, dive gauges, timing and firing devices, flash lights, sights, ship clocks....

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #16 on: September 10, 2012, 08:52:12 PM »
Glad you bring up the history part.
Previously on p.com... there were tons of knowledge about Panerai history.
They were helpful ppl... whatever info you needed is all there... just ask.
Now? After the fiasco of the mods making use of their position to milk their own SE... long time Panerai purists have left.
Some are not happy with the direction of the brand.
Serious collectors have lost their love for the brand and felt that the real Panerai lovers are being marginalised.
Now, it is all about who have the the latest models, the hardest to get SE and the game that they play hunting pieces down.
Not my kind of game.
And regarding to your question of how many Panerai lovers actually know about their history? Not many at this day and age I'm afraid.

Hi, Hanz,
You are right. The sentiment I get when following the panerai fora is people going to GTGs only to show off SEs, unique straps, straps with numbers penned on them etc....How many really talked about the movement underneath?

Just to add another dimension to the discussion, Seiko's 9s64 movement conveys 72hrs of power using one barrel. The PAM372 (at 47mm, dwarfing the GS) requires 2 barrels for its 3-day power reserve. Both are manual winding movements. OK, this is probably an inaccurate comparison, but my point is OP is a company rich not in technical know-how but fashion and marketing know how.

Offline pexus

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #17 on: September 10, 2012, 08:56:05 PM »
I guess falling in love with a watch first before digging up facts and history to educate yourself with the legacy of the brand is a normal path...no?

`Learning to appreciate my watch as a tool, and not some fancy branded jewelry'

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #18 on: September 10, 2012, 08:57:07 PM »
I would have to start by saying Panerai is actually very rich with history.


Only a history of supplying watches (fitted with movements made by others) EXCLUSIVELY if I remember correctly to the Italian military who lost big time in the war.

Winning or losing a war does not impact the brand, Seiko, Lange, iwc, tutima, and lots of other brands were in the war, makes no difference to me. The owners of the brands were proud to support the campaign (rightly or wrongly), their calling at that time. If we were concerned about the war, would you be driving a ford or wearing that Hugo boss suit?

Anyway, the watches were also issued to the Germans, and not limited to watches, but compasses, dive gauges, timing and firing devices, flash lights, sights, ship clocks....

Fully agree with you, I only brought it up to show OP has nothing to be proud of in that department either if they choose to go that route.


Offline tonykpk

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #19 on: September 10, 2012, 08:58:46 PM »
Late 30's to to about the 50's,Rolex make watches for Panerai in the form of radiomir shape , which are actually Rolex pocket watches at that time.Whether we love or hate it , I think it still has that iconic sensuality design for many to be attracted to, esp . the crown guard n the large readable indexes. I too agreed that some of the models are overly priced, well at the end of the day its a demand n supply market. many models are more easily available to us than yesteryear which many may construed as shrinking demand. just my opinion. tony

Offline hanz079

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #20 on: September 10, 2012, 09:01:21 PM »
Loo,
After all that has been said.. I still do not think Panerai is a fashion brand.
They did design watches specifically for the Italian Navy... for their diving use...
So, there are SOME technical know how there.
Just not movements... but since now with so much money being pumped in by their parent company... anyone can come up with an in-house movement.
Wether they are technically superior or not, only time will tell.
But I would have to agree that now, their marketing know how is really good... coupled that with fanatical ristis... winning combo there.
Terrenceterrence "seriously, i think buying a watch for it's secondhand value is like getting married and thinking about divorce at the back of your mind."


watchionable.blogspot.com

Offline hanz079

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #21 on: September 10, 2012, 09:03:59 PM »
I guess falling in love with a watch first before digging up facts and history to educate yourself with the legacy of the brand is a normal path...no?
You got a point there...  ;D
Terrenceterrence "seriously, i think buying a watch for it's secondhand value is like getting married and thinking about divorce at the back of your mind."


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Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #22 on: September 10, 2012, 09:12:34 PM »
Loo,
After all that has been said.. I still do not think Panerai is a fashion brand.
They did design watches specifically for the Italian Navy... for their diving use...
So, there are SOME technical know how there.
Just not movements... but since now with so much money being pumped in by their parent company... anyone can come up with an in-house movement.
Wether they are technically superior or not, only time will tell.
But I would have to agree that now, their marketing know how is really good... coupled that with fanatical ristis... winning combo there.

It's a bit like Maoism in the 1960's China I'm afraid. Fanatism and cult marketing. A fleeting fashion statement to appear "cool" and connected with those who look "cool". Mostly youngsters. But we all know what happened to Maoism after 1976. It just imploded and people started doing lots of soul searching to explain the irrationality. 

Offline TheHobbit

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #23 on: September 10, 2012, 09:16:28 PM »

Just to add another dimension to the discussion, Seiko's 9s64 movement conveys 72hrs of power using one barrel. The PAM372 (at 47mm, dwarfing the GS) requires 2 barrels for its 3-day power reserve. Both are manual winding movements. OK, this is probably an inaccurate comparison, but my point is OP is a company rich not in technical know-how but fashion and marketing know how.

Let's see, Seiko as we know it started making movements in 1957, panerai 2005?
Seiko first to market with chronograph movement, but popular chrono movement zenith and eta....
Being good in marketing does not make a fashion brand, nor is it a crime. Any mid market Swiss brand with 72 hours power reserve on a single barrel?
If we consider technological know how, sadly lots of Swiss brands would be at the losing end, and that includes Rolex. Great and serious watchmaker? Seiko. Why? Look at all the advancements they have, beat COSC standards, high beat movements, etc. what do they lack? Marketing.

Offline Enkidu

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Re: Officine Panerai - Just a fashion house??
« Reply #24 on: September 10, 2012, 09:25:26 PM »
Let's see, Seiko as we know it started making movements in 1957, panerai 2005?
Seiko first to market with chronograph movement, but popular chrono movement zenith and eta....
Being good in marketing does not make a fashion brand, nor is it a crime. Any mid market Swiss brand with 72 hours power reserve on a single barrel?
If we consider technological know how, sadly lots of Swiss brands would be at the losing end, and that includes Rolex. Great and serious watchmaker? Seiko. Why? Look at all the advancements they have, beat COSC standards, high beat movements, etc. what do they lack? Marketing.

And why did OP only started making its own movement in 2005?
Look Hobbit, I am afraid you are just dissecting the facts and not addressing the issue as a whole.