Audemars Piguet has been a prominent figure in the watch world for over a hundred years.
Founded in 1873 by Swiss students Jules Louis Audemars, and Edward August Piguet, the entrepreneurial pair opened their first factory in 1875 with the vision of using their histories and expertise in watchmaking to create high-quality, high-precision timepieces.
While over the years they have received widespread praise, the undisputed king of high status watches remains Rolex due to their mainstream appeal and celebrity endorsement. But is Audemars Piguet better than Rolex? Or is Rolex’s status as the more famous of the two brands down to any superiority it may have?
Design and Craftsmanship
Both Audemars Piguet and Rolex have spent over 100 years perfecting all aspects of their watch. From design, to production, from outside to inside, both are near perfect feats of craftsmanship.
Although both companies are considered master craftsmen, they are said to have unique design philosophies, and focus on differing aspects throughout the watchmaking process.
Rolex takes great pride in the accuracy and durability of their watches, whereas Audemars Piguet put less focus on precision, and more on the design and artistry involved in creating their signature timepieces.
Audemars Piguet are absolutely meticulous with every fine detail of their watches; from the engravings to the detailed finishing. Rolex on the other hand stands out in their durability. They are said to test many of their watches in the most extreme of environments to ensure they can handle whatever their owner could have in store.
If you want to be able to use your watch everyday for years and years, Rolex could be the pick for craftsmanship. A Rolex is built to last, no matter what you’re doing. But if you’re looking for true prestige, and artistry, look no further than Audemars Piguet.
When it comes to brand recognition, Rolex are undisputedly top of the tree. Rolex is one of the most recognisable brands in the world in any industry. In the watch world they have near total dominance in terms of public brand reach.
Rolex has depicted itself to the general public as THE luxury watch brand for so long that nearly everybody in the world thinks of it as just that.
Conversely, Audemars Piguet present themselves as more of an exclusive, luxury watch company. The Rolls Royce to Rolex’s Ferrari.
The average person on the street may not be blown away by your Audemars Piguet in the same way they would be for a Rolex. But in the watch world Audemars Piguet is considered one of the great brands, one of the famed ‘Big Three’ of watchmakers, alongside Vacheron Constantin, and Patek Philippe. These companies all represent exceptional watch manufacturing, impeccable design, and consistent innovation.
For laymen, Rolex may represent the be-all and end-all, but anybody in the know will consider your Audemars Piguet as perhaps the better way to keep the time.
Price and Resale
In terms of the purchase price, due to its status as the more premium product, Audemars Piguet watches have a higher cost than Rolex. Audemars Piguet also manufactures significantly less watches per-year than Rolex, making it a more premium product, and therefore inflating the cost.
The entry price for purchasing a Rolex is markedly less than an Audemars Piguet, sometimes around £10,000 less depending on which watch you are looking at.
Interestingly, from a resale perspective Rolex could also be considered the more appealing option. While some may think that having one eye on selling your watch before you’ve even purchased it might be slightly unorthodox, more and more people are purchasing luxury timepieces as a potential investment option. As a result, the future value of your watch should always be taken into account.
Unlike a car, a luxury watch will not immediately depreciate in value the second you get it home, making it worth a fraction of what you paid for it overnight. A luxury watch can hold its value fairly well over the years, and in some cases can appreciate in value if the circumstances are right.
As a general rule of thumb, a Rolex is the better of the two watchmakers in terms of resale and future value. This is due to their avid fan base and community of collectors who will always want to buy a Rolex if one becomes available.
Also, unlike Audemars Piguet, the market to sell a Rolex is significantly higher thanks to their unmatched brand recognition. Everybody has heard of Rolex, and everybody wants one, so you will have a much higher potential pool of buyers.
In a sellers market Rolex is as good as gold, making it the much safer bet in terms of future resale value.
Is Audemars Piguet Better Than Rolex?
Whether Audemars Piguet is better than Rolex is a question of taste and what you are looking for in a luxury watch.
Each brand has huge upsides, and neither could ever be considered a bad choice. Both make fantastic watches.
The benefits of a Rolex are:
- Rolex is built to be sturdy and to last.
- Everybody knows Rolex so it’s guaranteed to impress.
- Rolex is cheaper to get into
- Rolexes hold their value better than any other watch.
The benefits of Audemars Piguet are:
- Audemars Piguet represents a higher quality of watch than nearly anything else on the market.
- Audemars Piguet are a much more exclusive, unique brand
- The craftsmanship is on another planet
- They are a watchmaker for watch aficionados
While both brands have significant upsides, they both have things to consider too. Which is better is entirely up to you. If what’s on the inside of the watch is what matters then Audemars Piguet could have the edge, but if you’re in it for the recognition then Rolex could be the watch for you.
For more information about how Blowers Jewellers can help you find the perfect Rolex or Audemars Piguet for you, or guide you through our stunning collection of second hand luxury timepieces, contact us today.