Bulova Watch Review: Are They Good Watches?

If you are looking for a Bulova watch review, you are in luck!

Bulova, a reputable American watch brand, has long been known for its dedication to producing accurate and innovative timepieces since its beginning in 1875.

With a diverse range of styles in their catalog, including classic, vintage, dive, and skeleton watches, this company caters to various tastes and preferences.

Here is the scoop on our Bulova watch review!

History of Bulova Watches

The Bulova history is long and fascinating, so let’s take a closer look at the long history of the J. Bulova company.

Joseph Bulova

Bulova Watches was founded in 1875 as the J. Bulova Company by Bohemian immigrant Joseph Bulova. He opened a small store in downtown New York City with the aim of crafting high-quality timepieces for a dynamic and ever-changing landscape.

Over the years, the company grew and succeeded in its quest, producing accurate and visually stylish watches that gained popularity in the market.

Bulova has become famous for its use of quartz movement in its watches, which allows for accuracy and precision in timekeeping. To ensure the highest quality and durability, Bulova has also incorporated a stainless steel case into many of their watches.

The brand’s operations have expanded to include locations in Hong Kong, where they produce mechanical watches as well as their signature quartz-powered pieces.

Bulova aired its first commercial in 1941, while the Brooklyn Dodgers played the Philadelphia Phillies.

Manufacturing Evolution

Over the years, Bulova became known for its innovations in watchmaking.

  • In 1912, the company established a factory in Switzerland, focusing on standardized mass production.
  • In 1919, Bulova launched its first full line of jeweled wristwatches for men, called Bulova Square.
  • In 1926, Bulova introduced the first electronic watch, the Electrostatic, using a tuning fork for timekeeping instead of a balance wheel.

These innovations, among others, contributed to Bulova’s growth and established its place as an important player in the watch industry.

Apollo 15 Mission

One of the most notable moments in Bulova’s history was its involvement in the Apollo 15 space mission in 1971. Astronauts Scott, Irwin, and Worden took part in the mission, wearing Bulova’s timekeeping devices.

The Bulova Chronograph C, with the nickname “Stars and Stripes,” was also introduced in 1970 and quickly became a collectible item among enthusiasts. This watch’s connection to the Apollo 15 mission further solidified Bulova’s place in history as a reliable timepiece both on Earth and in space.

Best Bulova Watches

One noteworthy collection from Bulova is the Precisionist line, boasting advanced functionality and an impressive level of accuracy.

These watches not only offer an aesthetically pleasing design, but they also feature the most precise analog watch movement in the market.

In addition to these qualities, Bulova is the only watch manufacturer to offer a curved watch variant, providing an enhanced level of comfort for wearers.

Among the other popular models, Bulova’s Oceanographer Devil Diver stands out as a successful reimagining of vintage designs, offering limited and non-limited editions that appeal to contemporary watch collectors.

As we delve deeper into the Bulova watch reviews, we will unpack the intricacies and attention to detail that have solidified the brand’s position in the watchmaking industry for over a century.

Bulova has a long standing history in the watchmaking industry, and their watches are famous for exceptional accuracy and reliability.

Bulova is one of the leading luxury watch brands in the United States, offering watches at affordable prices. Among the most notable models is the Bulova Accutron which is now a separate brand that Bulova owns.

Their iconic Bulova Accutron model was a new concept for watch movement when it was released in 1960, featuring an advanced tuning fork technology and a sweeping seconds hand that requires no battery.

The Bulova Marine Star model is also popular among watch enthusiasts, as they feature an impressive design specific for sailing. This chronograph watch is sure to keep you on time no matter what.

Also, the Bulova Hack Watch is a timeless classic, offering a sophisticated dress watch design for any occasion. Featuring a leather strap and water resistant construction, the Hack adds a luxurious touch to any outfit.

Collection Overview

Precisionist Line

The Precisionist line is famous for its remarkable accuracy, with the most precise analog watch movement in the market, maintaining an accuracy range of 10-15 seconds per year.

These watches are popular by their curved variant, where the casing, dial, and crystal are all shaped to fit more comfortably on the arm.

Features of the Precisionist Line include:

  • Proprietary high-performance UHF quartz caliber
  • Anti-reflective sapphire crystal
  • Super-luminous hands for visibility in dim conditions

Marine Star Collection

The Marine Star Collection is one of Bulova’s most popular mid-tier ranges, known for their versatile and sporty designs. These watches are perfect for casual wear as well as outdoor activities, and perform well in water resistance.

Key characteristics of the Marine Star Collection:

  • Stylish and sporty appearance
  • Suitable for various occasions
  • Strong water resistance capabilities

Accutron Series

The Accutron Series is highly regarded for its innovative and unique design, representing a significant breakthrough in watch technology.

Bulova’s Accutron watches played an important role in several space missions, most notably during the Apollo 15 mission, when the Bulova Lunar Pilot 96B251 or “Moonwatch” was utilized for its exceptional accuracy and durability.

Notable aspects of the Accutron Series are:

  • Innovative design and technology
  • Role in important space missions, including Apollo 15
  • Known as the “Moonwatch”

Archive Series

Bulova’s Archive Series is a collection of watches that pay homage to the brand’s rich history and iconic designs, reimagining them for the modern era.

These watches feature various styles, from traditional dress watches to classic chronograph pieces, making the Archive Series suitable for a wide range of preferences.

Some highlights of the Archive Series include:

  • A tribute to Bulova’s iconic designs
  • Modern designs of classic styles
  • Includes traditional dress watches and chronograph pieces

Bulova Curv

The Bulova Curv Collection is a great example of the great features and capabilities that Bulova brings to the table.

This range of watches, available from many jewelry store venues, is known for its signature curved watch case. The case is designed to hug and contour the wrist for exceptional comfort and a unique look.

Furthermore, Bulova Curv collections are also praised for their:

  • Strong water resistance capabilities
  • Suitable for various occasions
  • Sleek design and comfortable fit.

The watch community has come to recognize Bulova as one of the leading brands for good watches, with a wide selection of styles and also classic designs available.

Watch Movements and Performance

Quartz Movements

Bulova utilizes high-quality quartz movements for many of their watches. Quartz movements are known for their accuracy and affordability compared to their mechanical counterparts.

A notable example is the Bulova Precisionist collection, which features an exceptional accuracy of 10-15 seconds per year, making it one of the most precise analog watch movements in the market.

The Bulova watch company is famous for their quartz watches, and that is why the Bulova watch review tends to be positive.

The Bulova watch company offers a variety of timepieces to suit the needs of any wearer. Many of their watches feature classic designs, like pocket watches and dive bezel styles with a deep blue dial.

Mechanical Movements

Bulova also offers watches with automatic and manual mechanical movements. These movements provide a more traditional timekeeping experience compared to quartz, as they rely on the motion of the wearer or manual winding to power the watch.

Mechanical movements often have a higher price point and can require more occasional servicing. However, many watch enthusiasts appreciate their stylish design and craftsmanship.

Bulova watches are designed to last a long time, and with their quartz movements, they definitely live up to that promise. For those who have smaller wrists, they also offer models with smaller case sizes and shorter straps for a more comfortable fit.

When it comes to accuracy, the minute hands of these watches are very precise and can even be adjusted to make sure they are in the exact position.

The Bulova watch company offers a range of watches with different case shape options and sizes, making them perfect for any wrist.

For example, their Archive Series feature classic round and rectangular cases with sizes ranging from small to extra-large.

This makes them perfect for keeping time in situations such as a parking meter or when you need to make sure your new watch matches your outfit.

ETA and Sellita Movements

Some Bulova watches also add Swiss-made ETA and Sellita movements. For example, the Joseph Bulova collection features automatic chronograph watches with Sellita SW500 automatic movements.

These Swiss movements are renowned for their reliability, precision, and durability. Watches with ETA and Sellita movements provide a high level of quality and are often sought after by collectors.

Miyota and Citizen Movements

As Bulova is owned by the Citizen Watch Company, some watches in their lineup may feature Miyota or Citizen movements, both known for their quality and performance.

Miyota movements, like the automatic movements found in some women’s Bulova watches, offer a larger case diameter of 41mm, providing a distinct size option.

Citizen is known for their Eco-Drive technology, which harnesses light to power watches, offering convenience and an environmentally friendly option.

In summary, Bulova offers a diverse range of watch movements to cater to a variety of preferences, from the highly accurate quartz found in the Precisionist collection to the reliable Swiss ETA and Sellita movements.

With additional options like Miyota and Citizen movements, there is a Bulova watch to suit any enthusiast’s taste.

Materials and Craftsmanship

Stainless Steel Cases

Bulova watches are known for their durable and high-quality materials. Their watch cases are usually made from stainless steel, which offers a combination of strength, durability, and corrosion resistance.

Stainless steel watch cases are known for their ability to withstand daily wear and tear, making them suitable for both formal and casual occasions.

Sapphire Crystal Glass

To ensure maximum protection and enhanced readability, Bulova utilizes sapphire crystal glass on their watches.

Sapphire crystal is known for its scratch resistance and remarkable clarity, making it a popular choice for watch enthusiasts. Also, with its ability to withstand daily use, it’s perfect for adding a touch of luxury and reliability to Bulova timepieces.

Workmanship and Quality

  • Craftsmanship: Bulova has a rich history of adept craftsmanship in watchmaking. Their watches are skillfully designed, showcasing a mix of old-school masculine charm and modern sophistication.
  • Movements: Bulova offers a variety of movements in their watches, including automatic and quartz options. The brand is particularly well-known for its Precisionist collection, which is renowned for its accuracy and precision.
  • Variety: Bulova’s extensive range of watches features several distinct styles, materials, and face shapes to suit individual preferences. This diversity ensures that there’s a perfect Bulova watch for everyone.

Bulova’s commitment to using high-quality materials and craftsmanship results in timepieces that are not only visually appealing but also reliable and long-lasting.

The brand’s dedication to craftsmanship is evident in their attention to detail and the performance of their watches, making it a reliable choice for watch enthusiasts.

Style and Functionality

When it comes to Bulova watches, they offer a variety of styles and functions to cater to different needs and personalities. Whether you’re interested in dress watches, dive watches, or chronograph watches, Bulova has something for everyone.

Dress Watches

Bulova is known for its stylish and timeless dress watches. The brand offers several elegant designs for both men and women, featuring high-quality materials and craftsmanship. Typical attributes of Bulova dress watches include:

  • Classic designs with clean dials and minimalist aesthetics
  • High-quality leather bands or metal bracelets
  • Water resistance of 30 meters or more

Bulova’s attention to detail, combined with their use of resilient materials like sapphire crystals, ensures their dress watches are not only visually appealing, but durable as well.

Dive Watches

Bulova also offers a range of dive watches that blend style with functionality. These watches cater to the adventurous and active, featuring robust designs with:

  • Water resistance ratings up to 300 meters
  • Rotating bezels to track elapsed dive time
  • Super-luminous hands and markers for increased visibility in low-light conditions
  • Stainless steel or a rubber strap for added durability and comfort

Dive watch enthusiasts can expect both practicality and style with Bulova’s dive watch options.

Chronograph Watches

Finally, Bulova’s chronograph watches combine style with versatile timekeeping functions. These watches offer additional features such as:

  • Stopwatch and timer functions
  • Multiple sub-dials for tracking time intervals
  • Tachymeter scale for measuring speed or distance
  • Date display

Some popular Bulova chronograph watches, such as the Joseph Bulova Collection, are equipped with the Sellita SW500 automatic movement, offering both accuracy and reliability.

In summary, Bulova offers various watch collections that cater to diverse style preferences and functions. From dress watches to dive watches and chronograph watches, there’s a Bulova timepiece for any occasion.

Price, Value, and Investment


Bulova watches are known for their combination of quality and affordability, for a range of budgets. They usually sell between $202 and $758 on the secondary market, with a median asking price of $199.

This makes Bulova a great option for watch enthusiasts who are looking for a classic and stylish timepiece without breaking the bank. Some popular Bulova watches and their price ranges include:

  • Bulova Classic Quartz Men’s Watch: Prices vary, but can be found for around $200.
  • Bulova Lunar Pilot 96B251 (Moonwatch): Prices range from $300 to $500.
  • Bulova “Devil Diver” Oceanographer: Prices range from $400 to $700.

Auction and Collector Value

While Bulova watches may not often reach the astronomical prices associated with high-end luxury brands at auction, they still hold significant collector value, particularly for vintage and limited edition models.

The brand’s rich history and varied designs make it an attractive option for collectors, particularly those interested in American watchmaking. Some factors that can impact the value of a Bulova watch at auction include:

  • Rarity: Limited edition models or vintage watches with unique features may command higher prices.
  • Condition: As with any collectible, the better the overall condition of the watch, the higher the potential value.
  • Provenance: A watch with a documented history or connection to a notable person or event can enhance its value.

It is important to note that while some Bulova watches may appreciate in value over time, they should not necessarily be purchased solely as an investment. They are, however, a worthwhile addition to any watch collection due to their style, reliability, and history.

Comparisons and Alternatives

Bulova vs. Seiko

Seiko and Bulova are both well-known brands that offer a variety of watch styles to suit different tastes. Bulova, an American brand known for its accurate timepieces, showcases its dedication to precision with models such as the Accutron and the Precisionist.

Seiko, a Japanese brand, also prides itself on its precision and innovation, with their popular collections including the Seiko 5 and the Astron.

When it comes to price, Bulova watches often fall in the $300 to $700 range, while Seiko offers a wider price spectrum, from affordable options under $100, to high-end models reaching several thousand dollars.

Key Differences:

  • Bulova: American brand, predominantly $300-$700 price range
  • Seiko: Japanese brand, wider price range from affordable to high-end

Bulova vs. Omega

As we compare Bulova with Omega, a Swiss luxury watch brand, a key difference arises in terms of price and stature.

Omega is renowned for its association with sports, space exploration, and James Bond films. Their timepieces are designed for high-performance and often command prices of several thousand dollars.

Bulova offers more affordable options, but still maintains a dedication to quality and precision. While Omega’s prestige and legacy might be difficult to match, Bulova serves as a practical alternative for those seeking a reliable watch without breaking the bank.

Key Differences:

  • Bulova: More affordable, focus on precision
  • Omega: Swiss luxury brand, higher price range, sports and space exploration associations

Bulova vs. IWC

International Watch Company (IWC) is a Swiss watchmaker known for its high-quality timepieces popular with collectors and enthusiasts alike. IWC watches often cost several thousand dollars, reflecting the brand’s reputation and the craftsmanship behind their products.

Comparatively, Bulova offers a more accessible price range, with most models falling between $300 and $700. While IWC’s reputation and exclusivity might set it apart, Bulova remains a solid, reliable option for those in search of a high-quality watch at a more budget-friendly price.

Key Differences:

  • Bulova: Affordable and reliable, broader price range
  • IWC: Swiss timepieces, higher price range, collector’s brand

Bulova vs. Rolex

When comparing Bulova with Rolex, it’s essential to consider the prestige and luxury associated with the Rolex brand. Rolex is synonymous with Swiss-made luxury watches and is known for its Rolex Oyster and Rolex Submariner collections.

These timepieces are often seen as a status symbol and carry price tags of tens of thousands of dollars.

Bulova, on the other hand, offers a more affordable selection of watches, but still prioritizes precision and craftsmanship. Although it may not match the prestige and luxury of a Rolex, Bulova provides a respectable alternative for those seeking quality at a more accessible price point.

Overall Thoughts

Bulova watches feature the highest precision with both arabic numerals and roman numerals.

Featuring a diameter of up to 42 mm, these watches are perfect for easily reading the time and keeping track of multiple time zones, with an easy to read display.

Their classic designs and attention to detail make them stand out in any situation, making them an ideal choice for those seeking quality without breaking the bank.

Bulova watches come in a variety of case size options, ranging from 34mm to 42mm. The larger size makes them ideal for those looking for a classic field watch with an easy-to-read display.

Bulova also adds an extra layer of protection by using a screw-down crown into the design, ensuring that the inner mechanics are not compromised by water or dust.

Bulova watches are constructed with a mm diameter, which is perfect for easily reading the time and keeping track of multiple time zones with an easy to read display outside of the dial.

In addition, these watches feature a chronograph function, allowing for precise tracking of elapsed time. Additionally, Bulova watches have a mineral crystal to protect against scratches and scrapes.

Things to Remember

Bulova watches, like the Bulova Wilton GMT, provide a high level of quality and performance for watch lovers. The unique 42mm case features a smooth sweeping second hand, and the dial is easy to read with 24 hour increments.

Additionally, Bulova Wilton GMT comes with meters of water resistance, ensuring that your watch can withstand accidental splashes or dips in the pool.

The mineral crystal also adds an extra layer of scratch resistance, making it a great option for anyone looking for durability and reliability.

Bulova watches are famous for being high quality watches, and they are the only way for watch connoisseurs to get a classic timepiece without breaking the bank.

With their sleek designs and attention to detail, Bulova watches are perfect for any watch guy who wants a reliable companion through both good times and bad.

The Bulova Precisionist series is famous for its superior quality and craftsmanship, and the silver dial of this particular watch makes it a perfect choice for those who want to track both a primary time zone as well as a second time zone.

Final Thoughts

That is the scoop on our Bulova watch review! So, are Bulova watches good? We say yes!

The good news for watch lovers is that you don’t have to break the bank in order to get a high-quality timepiece. Bulova watches are available at a great retail price, making them an ideal purchase for anyone looking for a stylish and reliable watch

So, if you want to add to your collection, or want to get your very first watch ever, don’t hesitate to try a Bulova watch!

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