Today we are gonna look at a brand called Alexander Watches. And I chose to review this because I liked the classic designs. Also, I chose this brand because there are some strange things going on with the pricing of this brand and how they market their watches. Also, there is almost no information on the internet at all about this brand. So I went to investigate. From what I found on the internet the Alexander Watches are made since 2012 and only started to sell them online in 2014. They are US based company. Also, I discovered that this brand is owned by Stührling. Which in a way is a bad sign as Stührling has kind of a bad reputation in the watch world, due to lack of quality and strange pricing. So about pricing of the Alexander Watches, well, it is strange. The watch that we are gonna take a look originally on their website had a price of 2450$ and now it has I guess some kind of Christmas sale. But it is strange that they can take off more than 50% off a watch. The same can be seen on Amazon where a watch that on their website costs 999$, but on Amazon 399$ and that is without discount. Also, the marketing is done in a way like promoting more of fashion watches than proper Swiss-made timepieces. Reading the site I have a feeling like reading Daniel Wellington site. But I kind of understand why they chose this way of marketing because it is what public eats up and believes in, but for me, as watch guy, it kind of throws me off the brand. Of course, I could be wrong about the pricing and I don’t want to scare someone off this brand because the watch is super cool and is getting a lot of wrist time. If someone could explain me more about the situation on the prices, please let me know in the comments.
So yeah, that was a little rant about the company. But yeah, they are making pretty good quality watches. The whole line up has a big variety of styles. You can get a classic looking dress watch or chronograph or you can get sporty carbon case chronograph or diver. They also make some ladies watches which are pretty good looking too. And all their watches come with either Swiss made automatic movements or Swiss made quartz movements. All the watches are Swiss made. Also, I haven’t seen any bad review on Amazon or anywhere on these watches. I only saw questions on more information on the company which is pretty limited, in that way many don’t look at this brand serious due to not having any backstory.
Watch we are taking a look today is Alexander Watches Aigai Chronograph A473. The Aigai Chronograph came in a nice looking box. You get the cardboard outer box with Alexander Watches logo and inner box is made of wood with suede like material details. The box is pretty nice. The inner lining is very soft. Inside you will find a watch, 2 years warranty and manual. Everything is kept minimal and elegant. Th first impressions were good. This is the first Swiss Chronograph automatic movement watch that I will review on the site here. I had this movement in some watches in past, but I sold them before I got my chance to review them. Immediately I changed the strap for a Colareb Roma distressed brown strap which really suits this watch, so be aware that the strap on photos won’t be the one with which the watch comes.
The case is made from a 316L stainless steel. It has fully polished finish case which is done extremely well. It really shines in the sun. I wore the watch several weeks and it has gained some small scratches but is normal for high polished case watches. You can easily get rid of them with cape cod, but if you are like me, better leave it, scratches give character to watch, don’t baby it. The case has this classic watch appeal to it, it feels very “classy”. It has this round edge bezel going around the dial, which looks good. The diameter is 42mm, the thickness is 14,3mm, lug tip to lug tip is 48,8mm and lug width is 22m. On paper, it would seem that it is a big watch, because of the diameter and thickness, but it actually wears like 40mm and to me, the thickness isn’t a problem. The comfortable wear is also achieved due to short lugs and how they slope down. I know that the Valjoux/ETA 7750 watches usually sit pretty high on the wrist, for some it is problem but for most, it isn’t a problem. On the right side, we have push/pull signed crown with crown guards. It is quite hard to grip the crown to wind up the movement due to the crown guards, but pulling out the crown and setting time is easily done. By the right side, you will also find to pushers which manipulate the chronograph functions. They are decently made, nothing to add there. The case back is screw down and seen through type. I like how they did the engraving of specifications of the watch and all that, I just like the layout. You also see that they don’t hide the name of the Valjoux/ETA 7750 movement like other brands do, they just write it on the case back. The watch is rated at 5ATM (50m) of water resistance.
Kind of most interesting and controversial part of the watch is that Alexander Watches uses the Krysterna crystals on all of their watches. Krysterna is a material that is unique usually to Stührling timepieces. It was developed in conjunction with the eyewear industry to achieve clarity and durability. In fact, Krysterna crystals are more shatter-resistant that sapphire crystals, making them less susceptible to breaks and cracks from the impact. Some of you readers would doubt the toughness of the Krysterna. I don’t know if it is real or it is just a smart marketing. But I think it isn’t kind of true. As I found on forums that many people doubt this claim. Also, there isn’t a lot of information how it is made or how they achieved this. I saw some post where someone said it was basically mineral crystal with some special coating on both sides, so basically hardened mineral crystal. Any case I have knocked the crystal several times and even went so far to try to scratch the case backs Krysterna crystal and nothing happened. Not a single scratch!
The dial is really cool and good looking. The whole dial is in this grey colour which on some lights even gives a brown-ish glare. Around the dial we have a minute track going, then there is this matt finish ring on which the applied hour markers sit. The centre of the dial has this square pattern which I really like. On 12, 9 and 6 we have the chronograph subdials. The one on 12 counts 30min, the on 9 counts the going seconds (small seconds) and the one on 6 counts 12 hours. The upper numbers of subdials are accented with red colour. Which is quite a subtle touch, but kind of freshens up the dial. All the hands are polished. The hour and minute hands have the Breguet shape, which really goes with the style of the watch and the dial with those roman numerals. The second’s hand is stick shaped with taper to the end. The second’s hand reaches the very end of the dial where the second’s track. Which is very useful to use the chronograph fast and easy. At 3 o’clock we have day/date window. The windows are separated. At first, I wasn’t a fan of the white date background, as I thought the grey-black background and white numerals would look better. But after some time I kind of dog the white date and day windows. The dial overall is a mix of modern with the dial surface patterns and everything, but the hands and everything else is done the classic way.
The movement inside is the Valjoux/ETA 7750 which is the most basic one. Alexander Watches took the time to engrave the rotor, but for some reason, it wasn’t done good or the people who assembled the watch did this, but the rotor has some scratches. It is a Swiss Made Manual/Self-Winding Automatic Chronograph movement. 25 jewels, 28,800 V.P.H and 40-hour power reserve. Overall this is a solid movement. Almost every big company in the watch industry uses this movement this way or higher modified one, as they have proven their reliability and quality over the years. There, of course, are some problems like the noisy rotor or that it is very thick movement. The rotor problem can be eliminated by adding a tiny bit of oil to the bearing of the rotor and it after that spins more quietly. But the thickness is what it is. This particular one ran at +3 to +4 seconds a day, which s very good. I will go more in-depth with this movement in another article in some time from now, so stay tuned.
The strap that came with the watch wasn’t good but wasn’t totally bad. It was decent quality. But I just personally hate the genuine leather straps that pretend to be exotic leather which in this case is an alligator. If it was in different colour, then maybe I would leave it. I would highly suggest them to change the straps with which they supply the watches or maybe get 10 different strap choice to choose from when buying the watch online. But the strap had very good looking and well made tang buckle which was signed with Alexander logo.
Overall the Aigai chronograph is pretty good watch. It has a nice design, classic looks with some modern touches, amazing dial, quality case, Swiss made movement and overall watch itself is made ins Switzerland. Of course, the company is a bit sketchy in the marketing of their watches and pricing them. But these things can be ignored as the Aigai has been on my wrist in the last month more than any other watch I own or have in for a review. So if you can ignore the cons and appreciate the pros, buy it!
|Markers||Individually Hand Applied Roman Numerals|
|Bezel||Polished Rounded Bezel|
|Dimensions||3H-9H: 42mm; 6H-12H: 42mm|
|Case Back||Screw Down Exhibition Case Back|
|Crystal||Hardened Mineral Crystal (Krysterna Front & Back)|
|Crown||Push/Pull Fluted Crown with Function Pushers|
|Water Resistance||5 ATM Water Resistant (50 meters/165 feet)|
|Strap||Alligator Embossed Genuine Leather Strap (22mm wide)|
|Buckle||Stainless Steel Tang Buckle|
|Movement||Swiss Made Manual/Self-Winding Automatic Chronograph|
|Calibre||ETA Valjoux 7750|
|Complications||Hour and Minutes with Small Seconds, 30 Minute Counter, 12 Hour Counter, and Separate Day and Date Windows|
|Power Reserve||40 Hours|
|Movement Details||Polished and Brushed Stainless Steel Movement|