Hi John, you are considering some serious watch hardware!
All three watches are wonderful, but when making this type of decision, you must try on and listen to all three watches first (if you haven't done it already).
It sounds like you like each of these watches for different reasons and only you can decide what is most important, or simply stated...which one makes you smile the most, gives you the most satisfaction when put on your wrist and when listening to the time. Every minute repeater watch will sound differently, even when its the same model from the same manufacturer...so it's important to listen to the one you are actually buying.
The Patek is a classic and wonderful watch.
- My only issue with it is I don't like the roman numerals, to me it is inelegant but that is only my personal aesthetic.
- It is not as thin as the VC and JLC, so it depends on how important this is...putting one on your wrist is the only way for you to tell how important the feel of Ultra-Thin will or will not be
- It is 38mm in diameter vs. 41mm for both the JLC and VC. Depending on the size of your wrist, this may be a factor.
- No argument about the historic price retention that PPs can sustain in the auction/secondary markets. Though even modern PPs are not doing very well right now (classic, vintage, PP pieces are another story). What the future would say I can't tell, but I would not bet against PP in regards to resale value.
- Exclusivity: if I define this as purely the number of watches made/in existence...PP is less exclusive than VC.
- Even though VC is 96 years older, the total number of PPs produced is much higher than VC (although much of the PP volume is their quartz Twenty-Four collection for women).
- Today, PP produces roughly twice the volume of VC (again, due to the Twenty-Four collection).
- As a rough estimate and projection...at this rate PP will have made as many watches in about 15 years as VC has in its entire 261 year history to date.
The JLC Hybris Mechanica 11 is a truly technical tour-de-force!
- JLC has always been the technological leader in Swiss movement design! This watch has a significant amount of technical bells & whistles to make any watch lover drool.
- Even with the flying tourbillon and peripheral rotor, it is a thinner watch (7.9mm) than the VC 1731 (8.1mm)!
- The mechanism to initiate the repeater is simpler to use (push button vs. slide mechanism.
- Again, it all comes down to what is important you to personally. Do you like automatics vs. manual more? Does it matter to you?
- I have to admit if I had a watch like this, I don't think I would wear it every day. So I'd have to manually wind it anyway, even though it has a rotor.
- The aesthetic is, again, not elegant IMO. Elegance is not JLC's forte (I think JLC's forte is advanced technical movement design).
- I don't like the hole in the dial of modern tourbillons.
- The slits in the dial that allow you to see the rotor in action are cool, but not elegant. This is all just aesthetics and personal taste.
- (as a side note: if I wanted a tourbillon and minute repeater in one watch...I'd add in a perpetual calendar and choose the PP 5207P )
- I love this watch for it's simple elegance, yet it has my favorite complication. With a simple watch, every aspect of its design must be just right because there is nothing to distract/hide a design element that wasn't thought out clearly. For my personal aesthetic, this is what VC does more consistently and better than any other Brand. An example of this attention to detail is:
- I love how the protruding end of the slide mechanism lines up directly with the center of the small-seconds dial and the main dial. This is something you don't immediately think of, but it just looks right without you consciously realizing why.
- It's an ultra-thin movement 3.9mm, even thinner than the JLC movement 4.8mm (but it does not have a flying tourbillon or peripheral rotor).
- I have a couple of minute repeate pocket watches, so I appreciate the silent regulator in this watch (no dstracting "buzz" while listening to the tones)
You can't go wrong with any of these three watches, but which one is best for you...only you will know! If you get one, please let us know and show us pictures. I will live my watch dreams through your wristshots.