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January 4 2010 at 9:07 PM

ThomasM  (Premier Login thepurist178)
AP Discussion Group

Response to PAM 233 or AP ROO

Hi, Greg,

The PAM 233 is a great watch, if you still love it, I wouldn't "replace it."

However, I do want to make clear a few possible misconceptions:

Accuracy: "AP ROOS isn't" - general statements like this always leave me scratching my head. There is nothing inherent in the design or execution of the AP ROOS (Royal Oak Offshore) that would make it inaccurate. As with most modern watches, it depends on the service condition and state of regulation of the specific watch under discussion. I have known AP ROOS models to be superbly accurate, and I've known some to be way out of wack (usually because it hasn't been properly looked after. Yes, there have been lemons, but what model or brand hasn't had some lemons? I know that Panerai certainly has...)

Reliability is also a broad and nebulous quality; most people, myself included, have a good sense of "probabilities" but who really, really understands what a statement like "this model has a 21.8% reliability factor" or "that model has a 19.7% reliability factor?" means?

I am personally familiar with more than a few Offshores; they have been as reliable, AGAIN, if properly used and maintained, as any other high end model.

The movement in the 233 (and most of the new in house movements being used by Panerai) have gotten off to a good start and with good reputations, but they haven't been out long enough, or in enough quantities, for anyone to draw any fair or reasonable meaningful conclusions about overall reliability or rate stability over time.

The movement in the Ti Chrono has been around for over 20 years, and its characteristics and performance are well known.

Trying to compare "performance" of one vs the other based on individual specific specimen examples, then extrapolating to the entire brand and range, can be very, very misleading.

All of that said, my basic pros and cons:

I would not consider one over the other (either way) based on performance. Both are very close in this regard (accuracy, reliability)

The final decision should hinge more on

function: one is a GMT 8 day power reserve piece, the other is a chronograph with date. Which function is more important to you?

looks: both are iconic. Which do you prefer?

reputation and "image": (this is a can of worms, I write the following as a trained observer of consumers and consumer behaviour, and a long time observer of the industry and its products. Of course I realize this can be argued to death...)

Panerai has a reputation of being a tough, casual watch and radiates these qualities. The "fine finishing" of case and movement is not on the same level of AP, but some people don't care about that.

AP has a reputation for being one of the finest watches in existence, and has a 100+ year history to back this (Panerai is really only a relative baby when it comes to being considered a "fine watch") Its fine finishing of case and movement is usually among the very best.

Panerai is probably the more "recognized watch" (in the way Rolex is) today but AP is generally regarded as the "higher end" watch.

Does this area of consideration even matter to you?

Finally, that most elusive factor - I've worn some very great watches, almost universally respected and coveted, that just didn't "sing to me" when they were on wrist.

I've owned other watches that were either very little known, or generally dismissed, but hey, I liked them, and that's all that mattered to me.

So in the end, the most important factor, after considering all of the above with your intellect, is to consider how your heart feels when you actually have it on your wrist.

Cheers, and feel free to ask any more questions you might have!

Good luck with your decision, and let us know what you decide!


Considering replacing my PAM 233 with AP ROO Titanium Chrono. Not sure though if this is the right move. My PAM 233 is superbly accurate (+1 second / day) and I've heard that AP ROO isn't. Also not sure about reliability. Could anyone help me with pros and cons of this? Thank you.

"A Purist does not believe in gilt by association. Respect, AND disdain, have to be earned..."

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