Coming across what seems to be a great deal on an Audemars Piguet is exciting. Before you get too excited, it’s important to determine if you’re looking at the real thing or if you’ve come across some sort of Audemars Piguet replica. Fortunately, there are several different ways to tell an authentic watch from a fake one. This is true even if you don’t consider yourself to be an expert. Put these tips to good use and the odds of making a wise purchase are a little better.
The History of the Audemars Piguet
Some background on the history of the Audemars Piguet will help ground your efforts to tell a real watch from a counterfeit one. Launched in 1875 by Jules Louis Audemars and Edward Auguste Piguet, the brand made excellent use of the skills each man brought to the company. Audemars was proficient with creating intricate and accurate watch movements while Piguet excelled in the areas of sales and general quality management.
By the turn of the century, the brand was considered one of the highest quality watches in Europe. That reputation continued to spread during the first decades of the 20th century. Even after the deaths of the founders in 1918 and 1919, their standards continued to be the guiding lights for the business.
Today, the company continues to produce watches that are considered some of the most accurate and highest in quality on the market. Like other luxury brands, the watches hold their value and are known to become more in demand as the years pass.
Check into the Seller’s Reputation
With that background in mind, how do you tell an authentic watch from a fake? A good place to begin is with the seller. If you are dealing with an Audemars Piguet boutique, rest assured that every watch offered through the venue has been authenticated. Experts have determined that the watch is constructed using proprietary movements, the right materials, and carries all the markings associated with an authentic watch.
Perhaps you are wondering how you can tell a properly authorized Audemars Piguet store from one that merely claims to authorized. An authorized dealer will have all the documentation to confirm that the business is operating with the knowledge and consent of the brand. Should the shop personnel seem hesitant to provide access to the documentation, take that as a sign to look elsewhere.
Beware of Pricing That Seems to Good to Be True
Another sign that you may be looking at a Audemars Piguet fake is the price. While private collectors do sometimes liquidate their watches for reasons of their own, a price that seems way below current market value is something that should make you pause and think.
In this scenario, spend some time researching what others are charging for the same type and design. If you do notice that authorized dealers are charging a lot more than what you’re being offered, approach the deal with caution. It could be that the seller simply needs to sell the watch quickly. There’s also the chance that the watch is a fake.
Look for that Royal Oak Gold
There’s something that will help you determine if that’s a Audemars Piguet Royal Oak replica or the real thing. It all has to do with the gold used in the watch design. Expect the gold to have a slight sheen but not something that looks more like gold plating or even brass. The finish will be pleasing to the eye without the distraction of the type of sheen you would find with big box store brands. If you have trouble telling the difference between the watch and something you could buy at any discount shop, it’s likely a fake.
Examine the Face
The face of the Audemars Piguet Las Vegas that you’re considering offers another clue. You’ll find that the dial design should include what’s known as a Tapisserie pattern. This pattern is difficult for those outside the company to replicate. For that reason, some of the fakes produced for quick sale will omit the pattern altogether and hope the hapless buyer doesn’t notice. Others will attempt to produce a pattern but it will be somewhat poorly drawn. If you see either of these issues with the pattern, step away and continue your search for an authentic watch.
Check the Stamp on the Watch
Look closely at the stamp found on the watch. Like the pattern, it’s hard to reproduce. The stamp should also be in the center and not a little off to the left or right. It will be clear and easy to read. Should you find that the stamp is off the center and possibly a little blurry, you’re looking at what can only be called an Audemars Piguet Miami replica.
Consider the Watch’s Heft
This is one brand that has never settled for inferior materials. If you hold the watch in your hand, you’ll notice that it’s heavier than most basic brands. Should you find that the purported Audemars Piguet New York seems to be no heavier than the watch you picked up at a discount store some time back, it’s not the real thing. What you do have is a counterfeit made with materials designed to mimic the appearance but not the quality.
Don’t Forget the Box
If the watch comes with what appears to be an authentic Audemars Piguet box, you have one more way to confirm if it’s authentic. The box will be made of wood instead of other materials. The liner will feel smooth to the touch and the brand name will appear centered on the lid, either in the middle or the bottom. The stain chosen for the wood will vary based on the year and the design. Fortunately, it’s easy enough to find images online that will help you determine if the box is an original.
Remember that while Audemars Piguet may not be as well known as some other luxury watches, it is considered one of the most prestigious among collectors. Spend the time needed to ensure that the watch under consideration is actually produced by the company. By knowing how to spot a fake Audemars Piguet, you reduce the risk of becoming a victim of fraud and boost the chances of investing in something that’s likely to be worth a lot more as the years pass.