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Aquaracer 500M GEN vs. REP comparison (pic heavy)

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Here is my new arrival.


Who's the dealer? No, it's not from Trevor nor Ryan. Is it a gen? Well...

Check this one:


Maybe this one is GEN?

How close do you inspect watches when you see them on somebody's wrist?

Not even that close as you can see it on the pictures above.

I know that the conclusions should be on the bottom line, but here is my first and most important finding: this is a scary damn good rep this 500M!

I knew it's good but I was not aware how good it is until I had a GEN in my hands and compared it side by side.

Unfortunately it's unavailable lately. I checked many dealers and they are out of stock. I hope that it's not another Breitling Superocean Heritage case (are they out of stock forever?).

Yes, the right answer was - the GEN is on rubber. But fortunately I also have a gen bracelet so I can make a full comparison side by side.

One more try? Check it out. Which one is GEN now?


Closer? Ok.


Those who know where to look already know the answer.

Here are another two shots:



Yeah.... looking at the pearl is the easiest way to tell. But everyone will admit that the accuracy of the rep is just scarifying.

Saying that it's time to find some differences. They are really minor. Believe me.

And when you look at them on the pictures (and know where to look) you can spot them quite easily, but in a real life they are almost not visible at all.

To be continued :-) I will be back with more pictures and detailed comparison. Stay tuned.

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The pearl is not even the biggest give-away. If you look at the logo on the dial, the one on the gen is so much finer than the rep. I didn't even have to look at anything else. That said, those pictures are HUGE and exaggerate by quite a margin so spotting them in real life will be quite the challenge. Awesome rep. I've been thinking of getting the chrono one. Wonder if it's of the same quality


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OK so let's go to the differences.

The dial and bezel

In my opinion it's the crystal that makes one of the major difference. It's difficult to catch it in the pictures but the gen crystal is more clear. Rep is kind of foggy. They say that gen has no AR but I personally doubt it. It looks like it has some slight single AR. That makes the dial look different and all the metal index borders and hands shine much more that in rep.

Gen on the right:


Gen on the right:


The main difference on the dial is indeed the TAG Heuer badge. The gen badge is rised a little more and has more sharp edges. It also looks like brushed metal. The rep is polished, less detailed and in most reps doesn't have arrows at the ends of G letter.

Mine has arrows and it's close to gen but still not perfect.

The rep logo looks also a little wider but it's a microscopic difference and may be an optical illusion.

Anyway it's not possible to tell the difference looking at the watch from half a meter distance.

The bezel rubber is a little darker on the rep. Gen is more like grey than black. You can see it on the picture below.


You can also see above that the font is different in AQUARACER inscription, AUTOMATIC and Calibre 5.

The date font is also different and 500M has bigger spacing between chracters and different font.

The orange colour on the second hand and Calibre 5 is more saturated in gen. But the difference is really slight.

It's pretty easy to tell the rep looking at the pearl - it's sunken in the gen and flat in rep.

The triangle itself is a microscopic more narrow in gen.

There are also minor differences in bezel numbers. The rep bezel numbers are slightly bigger. The difference is microscopic but it makes overall difference. In the gen the numbers are little more tiny and precise.

Gen is on the left:


If you are very picky you will also spot a little difference in Swiss Made placing.

Gen is on top:


The bracelet

This is one of the best replicated bracelet that I've ever seen in reps. Almost identical!

Why almost? The brushing is slightly different and the engravings are a bit deeper in the gen bracelet. The rest is just perfect!





You can see that on the gen clasp inside TAG word is matt finish and on the rep is polished. But I'm not sure how it was before I made some cape cod polish on it.





Now I can see that my rep bracelet is in better condition than gen


Oh... the gen is on top and the rep below and on the left.

As far as the brushed finish is concerned it's different on all brushed surfaces on both case and bracelet. The gen brushing is more delicate.


Also all edges on gen are less sharp and rather rounded. This makes an impression that gen is more delicate in overall. But you can tell this only having them both side by side.

Take a look at the crown. It's very good replicated. Although the rep crown face is a bit sunken and the gen is flat you can see the difference only in a certain light and after a close inspection.

Gen on the left and on the top.



The case

The rep case and caseback are just great. The only difference is what I mentioned before - the edges in the rep are sharper.













The movement

In my rep I have Asian ETA clone with decorated plates. It looks almost the same as selitta movement in gen. At first glance you can see the difference only in yellow gold ring inside the rotor in rep ETA. It is silver in Swiss.





rep again:


gen again:


A the second glance you can also see the different incablock shock protector.

And yes - in this magnification you can also tell that the engravings on the rotor in gen are better. But you need a loupe to see it in the real life.

AFAIK there are different gen movement in this TAG model - ETA or Sellita, decorated or platinum plated. You can also order the rep with swiss eta or selitta (the dealers call it the original TAG movement).

The caseback IMO is spot on.

The lume

Yes - this is the weak point of the rep. It's not as white as in gen in the daylight and it's quite weak in the dark.

gen lume:


rep lume:


It looks quite ok right after charging but after 5 minutes it dies.


What else can I say....

I just bought a gen and I'm pretty ok with it. Is it worth it? It's up to you guys :-)

I must confess that I had a moments of hesitation making this comparison. Sould I sell my rep and stay with gen or sell the gen an buy three or four nice cheaper gen watches or reps. I think that eventually my rep will make someone else happy :-)

Some more eye-candies
















I wonder what do you think guys.


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I forgot to mention about the crystal height - as you can see below the rep crystal bevel is higher. It's quite visible but only when you compare the watches side by side. Gen is on the left.



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