Review: Junghans Max Bill Automatic Date 027/4002.44 calibre J800.1 / ETA2824-2

IMG_0239Ever since I serviced Torsten’s Junghans watch, I wanted to get one myself. Now the big questions was used or new, and the main trade-off is that Junghans doesn’t make their own movements any more. So if you want a genuine Junghans movement, you have to go vintage. As I quite like the ETA2824-2 for it’s precision and reliability, I wasn’t too worried about that. And I do like the excitement of unpacking a brand new watch!

I need a date on my watch, as I’m not great at remembering that, so that decision was easily made. Now for the strap… my thinking here is that you will never be able to preserve the original strap, as it deteriorates very quickly when you wear it. But an original bracelet can be preserved for decades, so you always have a watch that is 100% original, and that’s important when it comes to selling. If I don’t like the bracelet, I can always fit a strap for a while…

So the only choice left was the 027/4002.44, as it has a metal bracelet and a date.

IMG_0237The watch comes in a lovely box with a little pull-out drawer for the instructions. “Die Deutsche Uhr” is a bit exaggerated – the movement is a Swiss ETA 😉

IMG_0238This Max Bill design for me is one of the most beautiful watch designs. Simple, no frills, good readability, and a classic.

IMG_0241Considering that this is an automatic date movement, the case is quite slim at 10mm.

IMG_0242The case back has “Design by max bill” etched on, which gives it a nice touch.

IMG_0243The instruction manual echoes the watch design, too.

IMG_0245And this is why I don’t mind the ETA2824-2 – it’s hard to get a movement that performs better for this sort of money.

IMG_0246The watch measures 38mm without the crown, and is 10mm thick. The bracelet is 20mm.

Now for the price – the watch retails around £805 in the UK. With a bit of googling, I found a French site (, that had a father’s day promotion with 15% off all watches – so I paid £670! That’s a watch:movement value ratio of 7:1, and I consider that very good value for a designer watch that looks this good. If this were a Breitling, it would cost you £2000 😉

IMG_0247The rotor is nicely decorated as you would expect.


27 thoughts on “Review: Junghans Max Bill Automatic Date 027/4002.44 calibre J800.1 / ETA2824-2

  1. I just got the quartz version of this watch and i am absolutely over the moon with it! Its such a cool looking watch and has become my daily driver! It looks great with a suit and also with jeans and a t shirt.

    Ive got a fair few watches Rolex etc but this is 100% my favourite! so classic but would look great on anyone, no matter their age or style.

  2. I was trying the Classic 1950 look on my relatively small wrist and it looked perfect with this watch. However i cam back a bit disappointed when I found that the Glass on this is some plastic, no sapphire etc. With a bulging glass cover is it not a problem.. my question is to some of the users of this type of Max bill Automatic

  3. Thanks for the great review, I’m trying to have one soon 🙂 is the site still offering the good price? and also, there is another lmodel using hand winding movement. How do you see the model?

  4. Hi,
    Great choice. I always wanted one as well. Noticed that on some of the advertisements, it has “MR” or “CJ” at the end of the model 027/4002.44.
    Do you know what the differences are?


  5. I’m looking to get the same watch, and also with the intention of changing out the bracelet (and after much research, your post was the clincher). Is it hard to do? It looks like there isn’t much clearance between lug and bracelet for a spring bar tool, although I noticed on the backside in your picture of the rotor, there seem to be small notches to reach in to the spring bar.

  6. I have the Max Bill Automatic with Date, but with the black strap and numbers on the dials (this one:

    I have had it for a while now, and I love it. It is the perfect watch along Bauhaus principles of form / function. The dial is clear, the movement smooth, the overall balance is just right.

    When I see people on the train wearing bulky, ugly and far too expensive watches, the Max Bill gives you a quiet feeling of contentment.

  7. Very nice one! I have tried picking up some second hand ones, but they have all “slipped my net”. Incredibly clean design (a true classic), and a quality movement! I am also a fan of the “Milanese” style strap. They will last a loooong time if taken care of, they look nice, and are comfortable to wear.

  8. I agree. A very good looking piece. Looking at this piece makes NOMOS Glashuette spring to mind. Similarly simple, and clean bauhaus-esque design. I wouldn’t mind one myself, but maybe for when I’m a bit older.

      • Yes, Nomos are indeed on the pricier side (especially the “World Timer” which I am secretly coveting). On the plus side they are a manufacture, everything they make us in-house, so I suppose the price differential is justified.

        I absolutely did not mean to call anyone old. My point was that, aged 23, it might not suit me. 🙂

        • I was just joking – and you are right, the watch is more for the fuddy-duddy generation 😉

          Point taken on the Nomos. I was thinking about the old days when they used the ETA7001.

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