This post will be a bit unfocussed, but has a basic question at its core. I've been on a steep learning curve, so if I make any howlers here, please correct me *gently*
It seems to me there are four possible relationships between a movement and the rest of the watch:
- A manufacturer buys a suitable movement for their watch, and installs it.
- A manufacturer has a department making movements, and another department designing and building watches. The relationship between the two parts of the process are no closer than in no.1, but the movement is called "in house", and has an the benefits of quality control that come from controlling all elements of production
- A manufacturer has a completely symbiotic relationship between these two departments: the movement designs are responding to needs created by the watch designers, influenced by feedback from the builders; the designers are constantly trying to make the most of the movements being developed. This shows the true benefits of an in-house movement.
- A manufacturer takes an existing movement, but reworks the parts so much that the some of the benefits of no.3 appear here too.
Aside from QC, in examples of no.2, what else does having an in-house movement bring to the table?
One of my grail watches is the Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Contemporaine; would that watch fit into no.2 or no.3?
For no.4 I was thinking of the German producers Dornbluth and Hentschel (who have both gone on to develop their own movements as well) Dornbluth use modern movements, Hentschel use NOS
Are there manufacturers who are clearly examples of no.2? What would be a consensus opinion of these producers?
Are there large-scale manufacturers who are resolutely no.3 throughout their range?