Located in Saxony, Germany, Bruno Söhnle GmbH Watch Studio Glashütte (in short, Bruno Söhnle) produces and sells quartz and mechanical watches with automatic and manual self winders. With a little over 60 years of successful enterprise in the watchmaking industry, Bruno Söhnle currently sells across 40 countries.
At the time of inception, the company assumed the role of sales partner to the Glashütte, another German watchmaker located in Saxony. Over the years, the brand name grew, paving way for setting up a self-made watch company as we know today.
With an intention to combine refined styling, perfection, and precision, Bruno Söhnle cultivates a steady and loyal customer base. In one such survey conducted in Germany, Bruno Söhnle ranks among the top best known German watches in its price range.
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Bruno Söhnle Brand History
The company Bruno Söhnle derives the name from its founder with the same namesake. Mr. Söhnle, known for his high precision mechanical watches, made an official debut to the watchmaking industry in 1957. At the time of its launch, the company used quartz movement in its timepieces, equipped and assembled with other mechanical features, giving each timepiece a redefined sense of styling and timekeeping.
Keeping the phrase “quality as you can see” as their underlying motto, the watch brand maintains a very high German standard. Additionally, all the watches made by Bruno Söhnle come equipped with sapphire crystal to ensure maximum scratch resistance. Paired with high refraction dials, you can read the time even in complete darkness.
While Glashütte watchmakers are historically known for the quality mechanical watches, much of the current Bruno Söhnle product line use quartz movements. The company also modifies its automatic Satellite movement with its own winding motors. The “blued” screws in all the watches unify the collections, yet they all are different from one another. These multiple small additions and modifications set the company apart, thereby also creating a name for technical perfection, a keen eye for detailing, and pioneering watchmaking technology. Despite these modifications, the brand sells its watches at affordable prices.
Making a Prominent Mark in the Watchmaking Industry
In 2000, the brand officially set up the watchmaking company/studio and took a step forward from being just a sales partner to other German watchmakers. In other words, the year 2000 marks significance as the brand began producing and assembling its own timepieces. Later in 2008, the brand made its first-ever mechanical watches with manual winding.
Marking ten years since watchmaking, the brand celebrated 2010 by launching its first-ever automatic collection. In addition, the brand also won the ‘watch of the year’ around the same time, taking the 5th place among its peers and competitors.
2014 is yet another year of celebration as the company unveiled its much-awaited FACETTA1957 line. This edition draws a wholesome inspiration from the life of its founder. Resonating with the highs and lows of his life, the watch symbolizes polished surface, matte surface, and slips on the watch case. For watch aficionados, this timepiece radiates character and personality, much like the philosophical watchmaker himself.
The success of these launches inspired the company to design many such collections, keeping true to authenticity and precision.
Bruno Söhnle Watch Collections
Bruno Söhnle currently sells hundreds of different timepieces on its official website. We will focus on some of Bruno Söhnle’s best-selling watches based on its technology, design, and styling, suitable for different occasions.
As the name suggests, all the timepieces part of this collection come equipped with a chronograph complication. You can read more about what complications are here.
The Chronohraphen collection proudly showcases a wide range of timepieces for men and women. Among them all, the following represent the true essence of the collection.
For the women, the Armida edition is worth a mention. Timeless, yet elegant, the Armida comes with Ronda quartz movement but with refined Bruno Söhnle upgrades. With a sporty dial, this edition proudly showcases the date and a secondary sub-dial for seconds. Diamond crystals come studded on the minutes adding to the aesthetics of the watch.
The double chronograph complication captures the start-stop time and split-second reading. In addition, the Armida also comes with a Tachymeter, embedded along on inner bezel. This edition is available in stainless steel, rose gold, and gold.
For the men, the Stuttgart line draws a lot of attention, for its classic look and clean design. With the Stuttgart line, Bruno Söhnle takes a leap further to ensure every moment means something. Much like the Armida, the Stuttgart also showcases the date at 12 o’clock and sub-dial for seconds. The double chronograph complication captures split-second reading. You can choose between stainless steel or leather strap. The strap and the color of the dial complement each other perfectly.
The Novelties collection is a true departure from the signature Bruno Söhnle watches. In a sense, they come equipped with a simple movement, where select watches have secondary sub-dial for seconds and a date slot. Among the entire collection, the following are worth a look.
Flamur III, specially crafted for women. The strap is a fine mesh with decorative lugs. The face of the dial comes with simple Arabic numbers with 12 decorative diamonds. While the underlying movement is Ronda, Bruno Söhnle refines the equipment to meet its standards. You have an option of seven varieties to pick from this edition; ranging from silver or golden strap to blue, red, gray, black, white dials.
Similarly, the Frankfurt Automatik II is tailor-made for men. The movement is Atelier caliber BS 509 with the base movement SW 200. With 41.4 mm titanium case, the timepieces part of this collection is perfect for all occasions, be it a casual evening out or a formal business meeting. The face of the dial comes with the date at 12 o’clock and sub-dial for seconds.
As the name suggests, these watches last while the stock is available. The inspiration for these collections comes directly from the founder and his journey through the watchmaking industry.
The Facetta Automatik is an ode to the highs and lows of the founder’s life. This replicates through the design and essence of the watch. The design of the face of the watch showcases checked polished facets, with a matte finish.
The ceramic bezel with a large date slot makes the dial sporty. The movement is automatic Sellita with in-house upgrades. The present timepieces resonate with the original Facetta1957 line with modern technology and renovated watchmaking know-how.
Yet another Bruno Söhnle marvel – the Rondo Automatic Power Reserve. Limited to just 120 pieces, this edition comes engineered with Atelier caliber (base movement SW 200) power reserve. The face of the dial indicates the power reserve on one side and also showcases the date on the other side. This edition is available in white and black dial with a brown and black leather strap.
Finally, Rondo II requires a shout out. For those interested in a square dial, the Rondo II will fit your bill perfectly.
Men’s and Women’s Collection
In addition to the above-mentioned collections, the official website displays an extensive list of Men and Women collection. Both collections offer a huge range of watches. Be it a classic timeless design or equipped with multiple date/day complications; you can pick from what suits you the most.
Bruno Söhnle Brand Reputation
All in all, the brand is known for affordable good quality watches. Given the upgrades and refined design, the prices will not burn a hole in your savings. Moreover, located in the prestigious Glashütte area with other leading watchmakers, Bruno Söhnle ensures no compromise in German standards while maintaining lower costs. At the same time, the brand guarantees a superior finish and technical upgrades that some other companies don’t provide.
Over the last six decades, the brand displays a phenomenal increase in loyal patrons and continues to push the boundaries of innovation even today. Yet, it is critical to remember that the movements in itself are not made in Germany. The brand imports quartz movements, and upon which it conducts mechanical and technical upgrades engineered in-house to give the timepieces the quality it deserves.
Although, the brand does not enjoy a worldwide reputation like some other famed watchmakers from the Glashütte area, watch enthusiasts commend the technical perfections, attention to minute detailing, and sophisticated styling. Overall, customers who have invested in Bruno Söhnle believe that the hardware is top-class and truly stands the test of time.
Is Bruno Söhnle A Good Watch Brand?
Watch forums and reviews sing high praises of the brand’s quality, durability, and longevity. Some customers have commented that the straps of Bruno Söhnle watches have higher quality over more expensive brands. In addition, the hardware, the crown, and the quartz movement attract customers, not for its inherent complexity, but for the fact that even the less complex movement lasts accurately for over five years without any change/service.
On the flip side of this argument, people who are unaware of the brand continue to remain skeptical about its quality in comparison to Seiko, Tissot or Orient. Regardless, the brand is certified under the Glashütte standards; which in itself is evidence of the true nature of the brand’s mission.
If you don’t mind a quartz watch, then consider looking into Bruno Söhnle, for, watch aficionados claim it to look like “a million bucks” for its on-point finishing. Moreover, the brand caters to all ages and gender. Yet, as we recommend in all our watch reviews, do not invest in a watch purely on budget or looks.
Factors like watchmaking history, the technology used, in addition to budget and usage should all contribute to the decision making process.
If you are on the lookout for hand-assembled mechanical watches, then Bruno Söhnle is not the brand for you. However, if you’re looking for a quartz movement with mechanical upgrades, many in the sub-$500 price range then we recommend you check out their wide range of collections.
Where To Buy Bruno Söhnle Watches?
The Bruno Söhnle official website offers great insight into the brand, current models, availability, etc. Models are available for purchase on the website subject to availability.
However, you can also pick up your desired model at a host of authorized retailers around the globe.
You can also find Bruno Sohnle here on Amazon
Where Are Bruno Söhnle Made?
Glashütte in Saxony is the main home to Bruno Söhnle. The brand also owns another site in Dittersdorf, a nearby town. In order to maintain the German standard, about 50-60% of the components are self-made in the company’s watch studios.
Currently, all the components produced in-house come from Dittersdorf. Upon piecing them together at Dittersdorf the watches make its way to the site in Glashütte for testing, final assembling, and quality control.
Bruno Söhnle Watch Warranty
Every Bruno Söhnle timepiece comes with a guarantee of two years from the date of purchase for manufacturing defects. In the event of any manufacturing or material defect, the brand will fix the watch for free. However, straps and buckles, spring, screw bars, and batteries don’t include under the guarantee.
Additionally, any defects caused by careless handling, impact damage, normal wear, and tear or a third party opening up the watch doesn’t fall under the guarantee. Above all, the guarantee does not cover claims for damages, refunds, or a replacement. The guarantee certificate contains all information regarding the brand’s policy, terms, and conditions. Therefore, ensure to properly fill in all required details with the dealer’s stamp.
For watch repairs, contact your nearest authorized dealer. The dealers manage the processing and ship the timepiece to Glashütte service department for repairs. In addition, authorized dealers also help with replacement parts.
At the time of this article, the coronavirus pandemic continues – as a result, the website reports clocksmith’s shops shut. Nevertheless, current online orders will receive a one-year additional guarantee as a gift. Above all, ensure the guarantee certificate remains correctly filled and stamped by the dealer.
To know more, check out the official website’s FAQ section.