You can pay a great deal of cash for a watch featuring the Valjoux 7750 movement, or slight variations on that base ebauche engine.
That’s why NWC mag has a lot of time for the LIV P-51 pilot watch. It’s got that Valjoux touch of class for £1095, plus VAT and UK import duty. Go figure say 30% on top.
That’s still way cheaper than say a Bremont ALT-1 for £5000, which features a tweaked 7750 movement. Or how about paying £7300 to IWC for a Portugieser with a green dial, which is also powered by a modded variant of the 7750? Yes, prestige brands are watch modders too.
You see why we mention this Swiss MOD watch angle right?
The same work that is kinda sneered at by certain watch blogs, magazines and experts as being `Frankenwatch’ is just the same process as factories carry out to Valjoux 7750 movements. Blue screws, decorated rotors, slightly different pushers.
So we say, check out thios LIV take on the Valjoux movement, because it has that sporty Top Gun vibe, day/ date window, sapphire crystal, a huge 46mm case if you are a fan of Breitling plus size cases, and a riveted tan strap that really sets off the black theme nicely.
Nope, we aren’t on commission, we just like spotting great value.
LIV watches are big, bold and colourful – also pretty great value when you weigh up the spec. The GX dive model offers a chunky 44mm case diameter, Swiss movement, 300m depth rating and a ceramic bezel.
The latest Gen 2 model is on Kick right now, with prioces starting at $690 – though you need to add on VAT and UK import tax of course.
We reckon the Gamma Green and Cobalt Blue models will sell out fast, not so sure on the grey models. More details here at the LIV Kick page.
LIV watches has some new variation son its 44mm case sized GX dive model, available for pre-order on Kickstarter right now. Save $100 on the RRP and get a Gamma Green, Orange, Black, Cobalt Blue, Rose Gold or Grey dial option.
You can choose straps or bracelets, leather or resin. Swiss movement inside the case, sandwich type dial looks great too, with plenty of lume applied.
The new offer has exceeded its backer target already by the way. Limited to 1000 pieces.
We are fans of the LIV watch brand here at NWC mag. They offer great value, build quality and vibrant styling too. Especially if you prefer bigger 43mm sized watches. Bad news though, prices are going up on June 1st, so here’s the word from LIV.
Since 2017, we have not had a price increase on any of our watches. Today I am announcing a modest increase in both the GX-AC and the P-51 collections. This increase is due to material and production costs going up.
The GX-AC will go up by $100:
$990 to $1090
$1050 To $1150 (for the TJ)
$1070 to $1170 (Rose Gold)
The P-51 will go up by $100:
$1370 to $1470
$1490 to $1590 (Fifth Anniversary Special)
If you have been eying one of these watches, now is the time to take advantage and pull the trigger.
If you like great value dive watches with a Swiss movement, sapphire crystal and bright, eye-catching colours, then LIV watches have a history in delivering the goods. One popular model – the GX TJ with blue dial – is back, 1000 piece limited edition run. Here’s the spec from LIV;
Features precision ETA 25 jewels Swiss automatic movement, +/- 5 seconds per day accuracy
Durable high tech ceramic bezel with BGW9 Swiss luminescence
41 mm case diameter, fits 6 to 9-inch wrist
Scratch-resistant and anti-reflective sapphire crystal on front and case back
Water-resistant to 300 meters (1000 feet), screw-down crown and case-back
316L stainless steel case, 3-dimensional multilayered blue dial with white numbers, date function, individual serial number on case back
Limited edition to 1000 pieces.
That wave pattern on the dial is a detail we love here at the NWC mag, plus the five year warranty and ceramic bezel. This is a very well equipped watch for the money. Oh yeah, the price is £533, plus UK import duty and VAT. Delivery will be in August/September however, as this is a pre-order special deal. More at the LIV website.
You have to hand it to LIV watches. They have launched another Kickstarter project and just about closed on the early bird offers within days, as well as passing the project funding target within hours. As popular as Tesla ? Maybe. As inspired as Space X? Definitely hit the spot with this tribute to the mighty Saturn V rocket of old, when astronauts were made from the The Right Stuff and they wore Omega Speedmasters.
The Moonphase Saturn has a quartz movement inside, but it is an ETA one, so you are getting a bit of Swiss quality for your money. Dial colours include a wonderful deep blue and a flame orange. Cases can be brushed steel, rose gold, bronze coloured or black. They are very punchy bold designs, with plenty of lume on the dials, plus that moonphase feature. It’s a physically big watch at 44mm case diameter, with a large winding crown too. The crown has an orange lined effect on it, so it pays tribute to the exhaust shields on the original Saturn V rocket. There are a few early bird models available at just under $400.
I’ve stood next to that rocket at the Space Centre musuem and it’s an incredible feeling seeing the char-grilled metal, in all its blackened glory.
The Saturn V automatic is called Moondust and has a Sellita SW200 workhorse Swiss auto engine in there, plus a sprinkling of moon dust on the dial. Colours include fume grey, green, brown and blue, with a variety of case colours as well. It features a see-thru caseback to show off the movement and the auto rotor has limited edition engraved on it. Both models are limited to 1969 pieces by the way. Yeah the moon landing year, LIV have really thought about this watch. price on the early bird is $470, about $300 less than the full retail – decent saving.
It has a 100m depth rating by the way, so you should be OK swimming whilst wearing this one. The winding crown has a gasket and it’s a screwdown crown naturally.
Flat rate $15 international shipping and a five year – yes FIVE – guarantee show that LIV are serious about offering good watches at fair prices.
I’m going out on a limb here but if a lesser Swiss brand like Hamilton or TAG started making entry level watches like this people would be falling over themselves in the watch press to say how bold, how innovative their designs were. Fact is, they should be, but instead they target older, middle aged buyers and collectors. That’s great, but you need younger consumers buying into the watch habit too, otherwise they will never buy Swiss because they see it as something their dad – or grandfather – might wear.
The new LIV Watches Rebel range is an instant hit on Kickstarter with over $1.7m in funds pledged. That’s impressive. More importantly, the watches in the Rebel range look the business too.
Top of the class is the AR Sellita SW200 powered automatic , which looks brilliant in Le Mans/Sebring/Gulf inspired racing colours. That one costs from $460 which is very good value we reckon, limited to 770 pieces.
The Rebel AC chrono models are also brilliant value, with sapphire crystals, a range of very tasty dial colours and designs. We love the chamfered chrono pushers on this one. Limited to 500 pieces and starting at $740 on Kickstarter with the early bird discount.
There’s a three hand automatic too, for those who fancy a very clean, striking looking Swiss powered everyday watch. Blue, grey, black and orange are mongst the dial colours on those Rebel models by the way.
Even the quartz models look really sharp (above) and with prices starting at $259 you can’t say that you’re not tempted to order a fiery orange model. Great work, LIV are really on the up and raising the bar for many Indie brands.
We love orange watches in a heatwave, because it just says sizzling BBQ, cold beers and lazy days at the beach. Which is pretty much how most of the UK is feeling right now.
We spotted two GMT models on the Bamford site, one is a blue/orange combo with echoes of Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean, and the other a more flaming orange. Not brand new models, just different.
You can also customise the Bamford Myfair quartz models, so you can add an orange dial and orange stitched leather strap for £475. Bit pricey yes, but you’re building your own design and most watch brands don’t let you do much of that.
Swiss SW200 movements inside the GMT 44mm case, designed in London, sapphire crystal of course. The Bamford GMT is kinda expensive for a Sellita powered watch at £1100 and rivals include models like the Farer Titanium cased Leven model at £995, which offers an impressive 300m depth rating. Or you could choose an SW200 powered LIV GX-1 model, which is carbon black with some nice orange accents. A bargain at £474 plus import duties we reckon, although it is a sports watch, rather than an everyday dress watch like the Bamford GMT.
The Valjoux 7750 is the VW 2.0 GTi of the watch world, an engine that combines proven reliability with gutsy performance and a wide range of specialists and suppliers who can service your pride and joy. What’s not to like?
Well, you could pay over £3000 for a Valjoux 7750 powered watch right now, if you choose a premier Swiss brand. Sure, that Swiss beauty may have beatuful detailing, luxury packaging, and a strap that’s been hand-crafted by artisan Elves from Unicorn hide. But ultimately, it has the trusty 7750 engine inside the case.
So why not check out LIV watches in the USA? They have their stunning looking GX-AC Swiss Panda dial chronograph on their site today for £812, which is entry level Longines, Rado or Oris money. I’m talking mechanical watches too, not chronographs.
The LIV Swiss Panda has a 316L stainless steel case, 42 hour reserve, choice of straps and a sapphire crystal. There’s a mineral glass exhibition caseback as well, so you can see that Swiss engineering in action.
The LIV Cobalt offers a very striking blue dial variant, still 7750 powered, if you wnat something that looks more sporty, more outdoors adventure. This is a 46mm width case too, so ideal for those who want a chunky sized watch.
The final Valjoux 7750 model is the Rose Gold edition, which shares the same case size, pushers, sapphire crystal etc. Costs slightly more by the way. There are still a few examples of the P51 Mustang themed limited edition model still on the LIV website too, which may also tick your boxes if you want to add a 7750 to your collection.
Apart from a slightly unusual lug width at 23mm, which limits your choices when it comes to replacement straps and bracelets, the LIV chronographs offer an interesting remix of the Valjoux spirit.