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Bling-bling! If I had to choose the shortest way to describe JBW timepieces, it would surely be that.
The India-originating brand produces some of the most decorated watch models I’ve come across in the last few years. For sure, they’re as attention-worthy as they come. But are these also a good choice for people that above the looks value durability, precision and craftsmanship?
There’s this grand saying that “not all that glitters is gold”. Does that apply to JBW or is that just wishful thinking from competitors that have started to replicate some of the brand’s style themselves? This JBW watches review is likely to deliver definite answers to these and more questions.
JBW Watches History
Like any other article of this kind, the JBW brand review also starts with a quick look at its history. JBW watches is a relatively young brand – whatever way we look at it.
If we were to go back to the very beginning of the enterprise that then led to the creation of JBW watches, we’d have to start in 1950. That was the year that the Meghani family became the mavericks in the timepiece industry by starting to sell Swiss watch models in the untried market of India.
After the massive and quite prompt success in India, the family opened 4 retail shops in Dubai, UAE. The next big move came in 1990 when Akber Meghani, leading the 2nd generation of the family trade, moved all the distributing to the United States.
It wasn’t until 2008 that the official launch of JBW watches took place, though. It was the year that Akber’s children, Amir and Shabeena, joined the company’s board as Co-CEOs, at the same time renaming it to JBW.
Soon after, the siblings developed the first few lines of diamond timepieces in the form of Olympia, Jet Setter, Phantom, Saxon and Victory. To this date, both the Jet Setter and Phantom lines are the most popular choices amongst customers.
It took JBW just 4 years to achieve enough success with their diamond timepieces to launch the global expansion. In 2012, the company struck deals with retailers in Paris, Dubai, London and Syndey. Since then, JBW watches have been gaining in popularity on a year-to-year basis which is visible mostly in the number of online sales. At the time of writing, JBW sells in 40+ countries globally.
What Is the Quality of JBW Watches?
When you look at different collections from similarly-priced watch brands, it’s hard not to notice that the style very often overlaps. There’s zero doubt that JBW watches are a breath of fresh air when it comes to low-to-mid budget watch brands in terms of design.
It’s never all about the looks, though, is it? In this section, we will take a closer look at the durability and precision of these watches, in particular. Oh, we also have to settle the most-commonly asked question regarding the Indian brand: are those diamonds really, real?!
Without further ado, let’s go.
Even the most stunning-looking isn’t worth the hassle if it isn’t going to last more than a year. Luckily, such an issue doesn’t seem to relate to JBW watches.
Durability-wise, it’s really hard to find anything to moan about (I’m disappointed, folks!). Notwithstanding the collection you are shopping for or your budget, all JBW watches seem to come with a solid, well-crafted exterior.
The most damage-prone part of any watch, the dial, is at the very least made of mineral crystal glass. That seems to be the case with low-budget watches that don’t go beyond the $250 mark. If you are targeting a more elaborate model, in most cases you can expect it to come with a sapphire crystal dial. It’s probably the most scratch-resistant material out there, used by many leaders in the industry such as Rolex or Omega.
When it comes to the body of the watch, there are two dominating styles. Whether you are shopping for the men’s or women’s collection, you can either get an all-stainless steel model or one that comes with a stainless steel case and a leather strap. Since JBW watches are considered elegant type, we probably couldn’t have expected anything different here.
Essentially, all JBW watches come with some sort of water-resistance. The lowest WR rating available in the collection is 50m, whereas some models can endure a depth of up to 100m.
As already mentioned, all JBW watches are diamond-plated. If I were to pick one part of the watch that is likely to wear down first, I would probably point to those little, shiny ornaments.
If you value accuracy above everything else, great! All JBW watches provide excellent precision since every model uses quartz movement.
At this moment in time, JBW doesn’t offer even a single automatic timepiece – which for me personally is a bit of a let-down. Okay, battery-powered (quartz) watches come with unbeatable accuracy but let’s be honest, who doesn’t appreciate the craftsmanship that goes into creating a refined automatic watch? And that sweeping second hand…
Anyway, JBW’s current stance and strategy mean we shouldn’t expect any mechanical watches in the foreseeable future. Those available at this moment in time use either Japanese or Swiss quartz movements. Those include standard three-hand movements as well as chronograph and multi-dial calibers.
In most cases, JBW watches shouldn’t lose more than 15-20 seconds a month which is fairly standard for quartz timepieces.
There are two warranty types you can get with your JBW watch. Naturally, neither of them covers damage caused to the watch by your own negligence.
The basic option that comes with all watches is 2 years and covers all manufacturing defects, as well as allows for free repairs of warranty-covered issues.
There’s also the Platinium guarantee. This is an additionally-paid plan that, apart from being valid for 2 years more, also provides you with the following:
- unlimited battery replacements
- 1 free cleaning/tune-up
- 1-time free replacement of a leather band
- free additional links for sizing for a bracelet band
- free warranty-related shipping
Are JBW Diamonds Real?
Yes, they are! All diamonds that decorate JBW watches are 100% genuine stones, naturally sourced from ethical mines in India.
Moreover, before being put on a watch, they are hand-selected by diamond specialists. To add to the glow, JBW watches often include certified Swarovski crystals that also go through a careful inspection beforehand.
For more than a decade since the JBW launch, the company has sold watches with more than 7 million diamonds. There’s a whole Diamond Guarantee page dedicated to the subject on JBW’s official site.
Depending on your budget, you can get a JBW watch with as little as 8 or as many as 570 diamonds.
Where Are JBW Watches Made?
Even though the company is based in Dallas, Texas, all JBW watches are assembled in China – with assembled being the keyword here.
Due to relatively low manufacturing costs, China is the go-to destination for many watch brands, some much more popular than JBW. The “Made in China” tag still scares people off (sometimes – quite rightly so), but in the case of JBW, it shouldn’t be much of a worry.
The most integral part of any watch, the movement, is either Swiss or Japanese quality. The thing that makes JBW watches stand out from other brands, the diamonds, are also sourced outside of China, in India.
Where to Shop for JBW Watches?
JBW isn’t as big a brand as Rolex or Breitling (at least yet), so there’s not much chance of you coming across a counterfeit timepiece. Nevertheless, it’s good to shop at the most trusted destinations online.
The first obvious choice is JBW official website that you can check out here. All things considered, it’s probably the safest place to do your shopping although if you value express shipping (or even same-day delivery), prepare to pay extra.
For the quickest shipping possible, go for Amazon. The place is full of JBW watches that constantly grow in number due to their increasing popularity in the US, Canada and the UK. If you’re buying from third-party sellers rather than directly from Amazon, make sure that the watch comes with the standard 2-year warranty. In most cases, that’s a certainty, but you can never be too sure.
Last but not least, an equally-good option is Jomashop. The US-based online fashion and jewelry store is a certified retailer of more than 200 watch brands – including JWB.
Are JBW Watches Expensive?
The price of a JBW watch will depend on the collection, its overall quality and, most importantly when it comes to this brand, the number of diamonds it’s been decorated with.
Because of the reliable movements and the presence of genuine, earth-sourced diamonds, the company likes to describe their watches as “Entry-Level luxury“. Quite frankly, I can’t find much wrong with that statement.
Whether you are shopping on JWB’s official store, Amazon or Jomashop, the low-end models are available for just north of $100 and include no more than 12 diamonds.
The higher you go up the price ladder, the more refined the watch is likely to be. That can show in a more elaborate look, a sapphire crystal dial and, naturally, a richer presence of diamonds. Some watches, like the newest Jet Setter Platinum Series, can cost you well above $2000 and features as many as 570 diamonds.
Once you start exploring different JBW collections, though, you will find that a vast majority of these models are low-to-mid price and can be purchased in the $200-$500 price range.
Is JBW a Good Watch Brand? Conclusion
I hope that by reading the JBW watches review you now have a better idea of whether the brand is worth your money.
As with all the watch brands, it’s not that easy to state objectively whether a particular brand is good or bad. When doing so, we have to look at your own expectations of what a proper watch should be like and also try to compare the brand with watchmakers in a similar price range.
Generally, it’s safe to say that JBW produces comment-worthy watches that can stand the test of time. Visually, JBW timepieces can definitely add a lot of spark to any wrist and are a good way to diversify your watch collection.
The brand’s founder, Amir Meghani, describes his watch collection as Entry-Level luxury. Because of the rich presence of earth-sourced, genuine diamonds, it’s hard to argue with that statement – especially when comparing JBW timepieces with other brands offering diamond-decorated models.
At the same time, I don’t know one luxury watch brand that doesn’t offer any automatic models. For me, that’s a small drawback when it comes to choosing JBW as there’s not much diversification when it comes to movement. If you’re a fan of quartz watches, that shouldn’t be an issue at all. Both Japanese and Swiss calibers present in JBW watches provide excellent accuracy.