In house movement watches are incredibly sought-after, but are they truly superior to outsourced movements? Today, we’re going to explain exactly what in house movement watches are and introduce you to three of our all-time favourites. At the end, you can decide which is better: in house or outsourced?
What Is In House Movement?
An in house movement is a movement that has been produced by a watch brand rather than outsourced to another company. Historically, brands always outsourced movements as it’s the cheaper option. Brands would purchase movements from other brands who were already mass producing them in factories. However, nowadays, more luxury brands are deciding to produce in house movements.
When discussing in house movements, it’s important that you know these movements exist on a scale. Some are produced entirely in house, whereas others are slightly less strict. There is also something called proprietary movement, which is when a brand outsources to another company, but that company works only for that particular brand. This means all movements are tailor-made for the brand.
Watch Companies With In House Movements
Many luxury brands manufacture their movements themselves, including Rolex, Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet, and Patek Philippe. Other luxury brands use prestigious manufacturers, including:
This is the most famous Swiss manufacturer. Swatch owns ETA, but it has also provided movements for other high-end brands throughout history —
Omega, Breitling, Longines, Hamilton, Tissot, Rado, Panerai, Sinn, TAG Heuer, Oris, and even Uniform Wares!
Miyota is a Japanese manufacturer that was founded by Citizen in 1959. It’s used by Halios, Zeppelin, Helson, and Obris Morgan.
Seiko is known for manufacturing some of the best movements out there. Many luxury brands use Seiko movements, including Breitling, Armida, and Invicta.
The Pros & Cons Of In House Movements For Brands
There are many benefits of in house movements, both for the brand and for the consumer. Firstly, when brands opt for in house manufacturing, there are no issues with supply, whereas with outsourcing you need to rely on the availability of manufacturers and movements. Secondly, the ‘in house’ label is extremely prestigious, so watches with this label are likely to sell more. Finally, when brands manufacture in house, they have the opportunity to sell their movements to other brands and profit from it.
The main drawback of in house movements is that they are expensive. Lots of money has to go into researching movements and eventually producing them. This is particularly costly if the brand’s watches are unique and each one requires a completely different mechanism. Due to the high cost of producing in house movements, in house watches tend to be more expensive, which is a drawback for consumers.
3 Of The Best In House Movement Watches
Now that we have established what in house movement watches are, let’s go over 3 of the best.
3. Grand Seiko, £2,000
The Grand Seiko in house watch is the epitome of luxury. Its stainless-steel appearance is at once sophisticated and robust, everything a watch aficionado would want in a timepiece. Seiko is a classic example of the sustainability of in house movements; it flaunts sapphire crystal glass and 100m water resistance, so you won’t be sending it off for repair anytime soon.
Finally, the in house movement itself is a precise quartz movement. As we know, quartz is the perfect choice for an accurate, affordable timepiece.
2. Audemars Piguet, Royal Oak Self-Winding, £41,200
This all-black beauty is practically propaganda for in house movements. It features an impressive self-winding movement with a power reserve of 50 hours. There are 28 jewels in this movement, which means the friction is massively reduced and therefore the mechanism is extremely durable.
As for the aesthetics, we adore the contrast of the powerful black and the lovely pink accents on the dial and case.
1. Patek Philippe, World Time Chronograph, £61,030
Our favourite in house timepiece has to be the incredible World Time Chronograph by Patek Philippe. It is the picture of modernity with its automatic movement that possesses a 50 hour power reserve.
We love how well the blue alligator strap matches the alluring chronograph dial. In fact, the blue colour scheme may be our favourite part of this Patek Philippe masterpiece. It has nautical connotations, which is fitting as this timepiece is water resistant to 30m.
Our Final Thoughts On In House Movement Watches
Overall, though moving manufacturing to in house is a risk, it is usually a risk worth taking. It means more control, higher accuracy, and a better reputation. For these reasons, we at Uniform Wares are huge advocates of in house movement watches.