Say what you want, but sometimes Hodinkee just gets it right. Its first Talking Watches featuring John Mayer, from 2013, has probably gotten more people into watches than any other piece of content on the internet. They finally released a follow up, Talking Watches 2 with John Mayer, and it’s just as good. Sure, he discussed the IWC Big Pilot once in between, but that just wasn’t quite the same.
For this second Talking Watches, Mayer brought out some heavy hitters. His Rolex Daytona collection is likely second to none, and the other vintage and concept pieces he shows off tell the tale of a man deep into it in every way.
Mayer mentions at the beginning of Talking Watches 2 that if he tried to purchase all of these watches today it’d be “prohibitively expensive”. In other words, he’s bought and held on to many of these pieces for years and seen their values rise, sometimes significantly.
That said, let’s have some fun. Let’s try to estimate the current value of th watches he shows during Talking Watches 2 and see how much Mayer collection is worth. Note at the outset that many of John’s pieces are close to one-of-a-kind, and thus hard to value. Additionally, they’re likely more valuable just because they were owned by John Mayer. I will be conservative in estimating a price range for the watch, but will default to assuming that John owns some superb examples that fall at the high end of the identified price range. And when we’re talking million-dollar timepieces, what’s a few hundred thousand between friends?
Oh by the way: I often tune into Mayer’s IGTV show, Current Mood, and chronicle the watch he’s wearing. He’s often wearing one he hasn’t showed off to Hodinkee before. For example, the Patek Phillipe 5370 Split Second Chronograph, or the platinum Rolex he has, of which Andy Cohen has a matching one. You can also see him with different watches in, for example, this GQ photoshoot. Needless to say, John’s got more in the vault to show us. Talking Watches 3?
Read on to see the total worth of John Mayer’s (known) watch collection
John Mayer’s Watches from Talking Watches 2
Including the watch on his wrist, Mayer shows off 20 watches in his second Talking Watches appearance. Starting with the one on his wrist, let’s go through them:
Patek Phillipe 5164A Travel Time Aquanaut
The MSRP is $34,020 for a standard 5164A From Patek. John’s is a Tiffany Dial, so is likely worth at least 15-20% more. Let’s just round up to an even $40,000. John describes this as his go-to when he “just wants to wear a watch.” He also showed this Patek in his first Talking Watches episode, so it seems like this has been a favorite of his for years now.
Rolex Daytona 6265 with Omani Khanjar Stamp
A standard Ref. 6265 is typically estimated at $300,000-$500,000 at auction. I’ve read there are less than 10 examples with the green-stamped Khanjar at 12 o’clock. Mayer’s has the stamp at 6 o’clock, but is likely just as rare. Either way, the stamp increases the value of the piece. Let’s say John’s first 6265 sits at the high end of that estimate, and is worth $500,000. Back in his original Talking Watches, John showed off just one Rolex Daytona, a non-Paul Newman Reference 6263. He’s clearly gone off the Daytona deep end since.
Rolex Daytona 6265 with UAE Stamp
A similar Ref. 6263 Daytona just sold at the Phillips Daytona Ultimate Auction in May 2018 for $327,000. It’s not the Ref. 6265 here, but close enough for our purposes.
Rolex Daytona 6263 in 18k Gold
A similar Ref. 6263 was auctioned off by Phillips in December 2018 for CHF 225,000. Other similar examples have hammered for similar prices. If you’re looking for a gold Rolex, this is the Rolex, as John alludes to in the video.
Rolex Daytona 6264 Paul Newman Dial
Made for just one year, between 1970-1971, the Ref. 6264 is extremely rare. We tracked a couple sales in the $200,000-$300,000 range in fall 2018, with a sale of $281,000 being the highest.
Rolex Daytona 6264 with Pulsation Dial
Pulsation dials are rare: John and Ben Clymer say there are probably 8 or 10 verified examples in existence. We saw a Daytona Ref. 6239 Pulsation sell for CHF 831,000 in late 2018. Mayer’s 6264 Pulsation dial is just as — if not more — special, and likely has the value to match.
Rolex Daytona 6269
Another rare Daytona. The Ref. 6269 is kind of the original “rainbow,” with diamonds in the bezel and dial. One sold at Phillips’ “Daytona Ultimatum” auction in May 2018 for CHF 605,000.
Rolex Daytona 6270
The 6269’s brother, and just as rare. Christie’s sold one for CHF 905,000 in 2014. John and Clymer guess there are between 8 and 10 of these Daytonas in existence.
Rolex Rainbow Daytona 116598 in 18k Gold
You can find Chrono24 listings for this piece in the $200,000 range. On this one, John’s pretty adept at selling us on the Rainbow Daytona, which some might dismiss as too blingy, even tacky. “If you are a big enough enthusiast of Rolex and you can understand not only the rarity of the piece, but the rarity of the though that went into creating the piece, you can then rare the watch as a collector,” John says. He points to Jay Leno and his car collection as an inspiration for this thought.
Rolex Rainbow Daytona 116599 in White Gold
Again, we’ll be conservative and look to Chrono24’s listings, which seem to average out at around $200,000.
Rolex Daytona 116508 in Yellow Gold with Green Dial
A modern Daytona, it’s still listed for $34,650 on Rolex’s website. John had some astute observation about this watch — it came out in the same year Rolex released a new ceramic-bezel Daytona, and he felt this one flew under the radar. Get ready for them to explode after people see and digest this video.
Rolex Daytona 116509 in White Gold with Blue Dial
Another modern Daytona, Rolex lists this one at $37,450. Let’s assume John has the pull with his local authorized dealer to be able to buy these modern pieces at retail price.
Rolex Ref. 5514 Comex Submariner
Enough Daytonas. This Ref. 5514 is basically the legendary Ref. 5513, but with a helium escape valve, made for the French dive company Comex. We’ve seen dealers list these in the neighborhood of $100,000. This dealer recently had one listed at $121,000.
Rolex Ref. 6200 Submariner
The original “Submariner” before it was even called Submariner. Phillips sold one in October 2017 for $579,000. John’s is in amazing, original condition and would likely garner just as much attention.
Patek Phillipe Ref. 5971
A platinum Patek Perpetual Calendar with baguette diamonds in the bezel. What more do you need? Phillips sold one of these at a Hong Kong auction in October 2017 for HK $1.6m, or about USD $200,000.
Patek Phillipe Ref. 5004G with Salmon Dial and Luminous Hands (unique)
Now we get into the really unique stuff. This is a watch that John Mayer had specially commissioned from the Patek Phillipe manufacture. It’s a Patek Phillipe Reference 5004G with a salmon dial and special-requested luminous hands. And it’s engraved with “Mr. J. C. Mayer” on the back just to make sure you know. It’s one of a kind, and likely priceless. Years from now, it’ll show up at auction and sell in the millions. Phillips sold something kind of close (but not really) at a Hong Kong auction in 2015 for HK $3,280,000 (about USD $420,000). Let’s round up and give John’s an even half million — but again, that estimate doesn’t really do this unique piece justice.
Audemars Piguet Concept GMT Tourbillon in White Ceramic
Audemars Piguet makes some pretty cool concept pieces, and this is one of them. Ablogtowatch went hands-on with one in 2014 and cited the MSRP at $213,300. AP still has it featured on their website, though they note it’s not for sale.
Audemars Piguet Concept Royal Oak Tourbillon Chronograph
This one you can still find on AP’s website, though no price is listed. Still, some have gone hands on with it and cited MSRP at $353,000.
John Mayer showed off a couple impressive Audemars Piguet Concept pieces: a GMT Tourbillon in White Ceramic (top/eft), and a Tourbillon Chronograph (right/below)
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Extra-Thin Tourbillon
As if the Concept APs weren’t enough, Mayer brought another crazy Royal Oak. Mayer sings the praises of Audemars Piguet’s particular execution of rose gold. Apparently he likes it, because this rose gold everything (case, bracelet, dial) AP Royal Oak Extra-Thin Tourbillon is pretty freaking gold. Others have gone hands on and cited the price at $180,000.
Rolex GMT Master II 116719BLRO in White Gold (Black Dial)
Mayer and Clymer say they bought this white gold Pepsi GMT together in 2015. Its original MSRP was around $35,000, and while Rolex released a new “meteorite dial” version of this watch at Baselworld 2019, there’s something clean and classic about the black dial. Good choice, boys.
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To see the final tally and worth of John’s watch collection
That gets us up to 20 watches, and some pretty unique and rare ones at that. So what’s the total value of Mayer’s collection from Talking Watches 2?
We’re at $6,605,400 as the estimated value of John Mayer’s Talking Watches 2 collection. But we’ve still got one Talking Watches to go! Stay tuned for our estimates of John’s first Talking Watches, as well as other watches we’ve seen him sporting in public.
Want more John? To see where John Mayer’s “5 Best Vintage Rolex Picks Under $8,000” are today, click here.