If there is an underestimated phenomenon in the history of watchmaking, it is the Quartz Crisis of the 1970s and 1980s. Before that, watches were considered expensive and a luxury item in most households.
Some of these pieces have been passed down from generation to generation and still belong to the descendants of those who wore them in the 70s and 80s.
The vast majority of wristwatches that we see around us every day are most likely quartz watches. It has a simple mechanism: a battery, a quartz crystal and an oscillator. If your watch is battery powered, chances are it’s a quartz watch.
This technology is so simple and mass-produced in the 21st century, it’s found in wristwatches and other timepieces as cheap as Tk100 (if you’re willing to browse the pedestrian markets of Motijheel, Baitul Mukarram and New Market) .
For clarity, fashion brands such as Daniel Wellington, Emporio Armani, Calvin Klein or Tommy Hilfiger are basically watches made at low cost in mass production factories in China. With the addition of their brand logo, watches often cost 10 times their production cost.
While looking for a new watch, I once came across a generic DW watch priced at Tk20,750+ on Amazon. Later I found the same watch without the DW mark for around 2075 Tk on Aliexpress.
So without further ado, here is our recommendation for some of our top picks in quartz watches for enthusiasts.
As local watch stores cater more to fashion watches than watch brands with watchmaking history, it is a bit more difficult to find our recommended watches in stock in the market. In addition, the prices mentioned are subject to change due to the evolution of the dollar rate.
Casio Classic Quartz Watch with Resin Strap (MW-240-1EVCF)
Casio MW-240-1EVCF is a simple wristwatch with a minimalist resin design. At this price, it’s a bargain and should serve you for years without any problems. You can find watches from other fashion brands around this price, but they won’t last as long as this Casio.
Price: 1,800 Tk
Or buy: https://www.penguin.com.bd/product/casio-mw-240-1bv-analog-mens-watch/
Timex Weekender Unisex 38mm Watch
The classic Timex weekender is a fan-favorite budget watch with an easy-to-read dial and 50-meter water resistance. The biggest selling point of this piece is its indiglo function: the whole dial lights up when you press the crown.
Plus, with quick-release straps, the choices for customizing this watch are virtually endless. You can install any strap you want in seconds, especially if it’s nato straps.
However, some corners have been cut. The watch ticks considerably loudly, and the brass frame can be easily dented if you bang your arm against a hardwood desk or wall. But at this price, it’s excellent value for money.
Price: 4,912 Tk
Or buy: https://www.ubuy.com.bd/en/product/7MV9RC-unisex-weekender-38mm-watch
Casio ‘Duro’ MDV106-1A
Diving watches usually have a water resistance of 200 meters, a solid case, a screw-down crown and a bezel. The Casio Duro has it all, including an engraved caseback emblazoned with the image of a Marlin.
The Casio Duro has always been a fan favorite for budget watch enthusiasts. But a few years ago, fan following gained popularity once it was widely reported that billionaire Bill Gates is mostly seen wearing this wristwatch.
You can wear it as a daily watch or go scuba diving with it, and it’s tough enough to withstand the toughest knocks a layman can bring 365 days a year.
Price: 6,902 Tk
The Fossil Grant is quite a popular watch in Bangladesh. If it’s a chronograph, chances are you’ve seen someone wearing it. Even though we mentioned that we will not recommend fashion brand watches, Fossil will be an exception because the price of their watches is not as high as most other fashion brands. Their price reflects what you get.
The Grant features a Roman numeral dial with chronograph sub-dials that can keep time up to 30 minutes. It is by no means a “real chronograph”, but it is not intended to be one – it is a fashionable watch for everyday use.
Pro Tip: The Fossil Grant is usually priced at $140 or Tk 14,525, but patience here will reward you as it often goes on sale for $65 or Tk 6,743.
Price: 10,854 Tk