Navigation

Founded in 1881, Seiko is Japan’s leading watch company and one of the world’s largest in-house watch manufactures. In addition to Seiko branded watches, they also produce high-end timepieces under the Grand Seiko and Credor labels.

HANDS-ON: Grand Seiko has just released their first professional diver, the Hi-Beat 36000 Professional 600m (refs. SBGH255, SBGH257) and we find it intimidating

Seiko’s reputation in the world of professional dive watches is unimpeachable, and a trusty Seiko diver is a staple in any well-rounded collection. But, until now these watches have primarily been made under the Seiko Prospex label. Well, that all changes today with the introduction of the first ever professional-grade diver made under their top tier label, the Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36000 Professional 600m Diver. Released in two versions, the regular production black-dialled SBGH255 and the limited edition (of 500) blue-dialled SBGH257 is every inch a professional grade diver: with a large 46.9mm wide and 16.9mm high titanium case, powered by Grand Seiko’s excellent 9S85 movement, accurate to -3/+5 seconds a day. Moreover the ingenious design of the case (specifically the L-shaped crystal gasket) means that it’s suitable for gas saturation diving, without the need for a helium escape valve that would blemish the otherwise clean lines of the case. The watch is has magnetic resistance of 16,000 gauss, thanks largely to the solid iron dial. The unidirectional bezel, with elapsed time scale is heavily notched to ensure ease of operation, even at depth. What isn’t captured in this roll call of specifications is just how seriously manly this watch is…. Read More

Read More No Comments

HANDS-ON: The Grand Seiko Black Ceramic Spring Drive GMT (ref. SBGC219)

Last year Grand Seiko released a new-look, sporty, modular, ceramic and titanium Spring Drive Chronograph. It was a bold change of pace for the usually buttoned-up brand, and I’ve got to say it both surprised and delighted me. Baselworld 2017 sees the return of this modular approach, in the form of the Black Ceramic Collection – a trifecta of three Spring Drive GMTs. There’s a black dial (SBGC221) and a white dial (SBGC223), but the version that caught our hearts and inspired out minds was the blue and gold SBGC219. Of course this is the limited edition (500 pieces). But there’s something about the rich colour scheme, complex dial layout and big 46.4mm case that just works. Add the enhanced accuracy (how does an accuracy of + 0.5 – 0.5 a day sound?) of the 9R96 into the mix, and this is a watch that has all the bells and whistles you could ask for. In addition to the titanium and ceramic case, Grand Seiko has added a high-intensity titanium bracelet with ceramic centre links into the equation. It’s a welcome addition that suits the look better than the alligator straps last years versions came with. There’s no denying that… Read More

Read More No Comments

HANDS-ON: Grand Seiko reissue their first ever watch, plus a completely new re-interpretation

Watch brands love nothing more than an anniversary. You might even be forgiven for thinking that marketing departments devote a substantial amount of energy to finding ever more obscure historical events, products or personages to commemorate with a new limited edition. 56 years since the release of our mildly popular chronograph? Reissue. The company founder’s brother got married on this day 132 years ago? Gala event. Jane from accounts is going on long service leave? Commemorative limited edition. Given this bloviating trend it’s refreshing to see no mention of ‘anniversary’ anywhere in Seiko’s press release for the reissue of the original Grand Seiko, originally released in 1960. In fact, it’s not one reissue, but two, or four, depending on how you count it. Before we get to the new, let’s quickly talk about the old. The original Grand Seiko, powered by the manual caliber 3180, was the epitome of a classic dress watch, and an important step in Seiko’s quest for accuracy. Round, demure of proportion and fitted with bold (and ever so slightly ’60s) baton indices paired with traditional dauphine hands. It’s a watch that set the tone of classical excellence that has (odd quirky design choices aside), set the… Read More

Read More No Comments

HANDS-ON: Grand Seiko has just released their first professional diver, the Hi-Beat 36000 Professional 600m (refs. SBGH255, SBGH257) and we find it intimidating

Seiko’s reputation in the world of professional dive watches is unimpeachable, and a trusty Seiko diver is a staple in any well-rounded collection. But, until now these watches have primarily been made under the Seiko Prospex label. Well, that all changes today with the introduction of the first ever professional-grade diver made under their top tier label, the Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36000 Professional 600m Diver. Released in two versions, the regular production black-dialled SBGH255 and the limited edition (of 500) blue-dialled SBGH257 is every inch a professional grade diver: with a large 46.9mm wide and 16.9mm high titanium case, powered by Grand Seiko’s excellent 9S85 movement, accurate to -3/+5 seconds a day. Moreover the ingenious design of the case (specifically the L-shaped crystal gasket) means that it’s suitable for gas saturation diving, without the need for a helium escape valve that would blemish the otherwise clean lines of the case. The watch is has magnetic resistance of 16,000 gauss, thanks largely to the solid iron dial. The unidirectional bezel, with elapsed time scale is heavily notched to ensure ease of operation, even at depth. What isn’t captured in this roll call of specifications is just how seriously manly this watch is…. Read More

Read More No Comments

BASEL BUILDUP: 5 days to go. The appeal of the Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGD001’s diamond dust is forever…

BASEL BUILDUP:  Seiko’s impact at Baselworld last year was measurable on the Richter scale. If it wasn’t the aftershocks of the Seiko Presage Chronograph 60th Anniversary Limited Edition it was watches like the Grand Seiko Spring Drive SBGD001. Hard model name to remember. Easy watch to be wooed by. The dial doesn’t quite sparkle in these pictures like it does in real life, so if you ever get the chance to see one, do yourself a favour.  The first thing you notice about this Grand Seiko when you look at it is the dial. It’s a fresh as virgin snow on a crisp winter’s morning – an icy, sparkling white. Seiko call it ‘diamond dust’ and it’s easy to see why. What you notice next, if you’re lucky enough to have the opportunity to hold this watch in your hands is the weight. It’s heavy, real heavy. And that can only mean one thing – platinum. The case isn’t just solid, it’s big too. At 43mm it measures in larger than most Grand Seiko’s, thanks to the 37mm wide movement. Add this uncharacteristically big case to Seiko’s impeccable polishing and the traditional styling, and what might look inconspicuous in press pictures, is actually a shimmering… Read More

Read More No Comments

INTRODUCING: The Seiko Presage Enamel collection – 4 new looks for last year’s surprise hit, starting at $1800

If you’re into watches and haven’t heard about the Presage Chronograph from Seiko, we’re sorry to be the ones to tell you, but you’ve been living under a rock. It was, without doubt, the winning curveball of 2016, and for good reason. It ticked all the boxes: pedigree, style, mechanics, value and an incredibly handsome dial. The only problem is that it was a limited edition. Well, that’s not the case with the four new regular production additions to the Presage line, still based on Seiko’s historical ‘Laurel’ model, and all featuring lustrous hand-fired enamel dials and classic style, replete with Roman numerals. Here are our initial thoughts on the collection, though we know these will be watches that look even better in the metal, so stay tuned for Baselworld. Seiko Presage Enamel Automatic Chronograph (ref. SRQ023) Without doubt, this will be the most popular of the collection, given that it’s virtually the same as last year’s breakout model. The most obvious change is Roman numerals replacing the Breguet-style Arabics. The other changes are the addition of ‘Presage’ dial text at 12, the new typeface for ‘automatic’ and a slightly tweaked hour hand. All small changes, but the overall result is a dressier-looking chronograph. The price… Read More

Read More No Comments

MY WATCH STORY: Ben’s Seiko Sea Urchin

Recently, Ben Gunsberger – friend of T+T, visual effects artist, photographer and co-founder of Babyology.com.au – posted this image on his Facebook feed without a caption. In watch circles, it doesn’t get much more intriguing than that, so we pestered him (over and over) until he agreed to fill us in on his Seiko. What’s the story of this watch? It’s the Seiko SNZF17K1 “Sea Urchin” on a Clockwork Synergy NATO strap. Ever since I became interested in mechanical watches, I’ve loved the Rolex Submariner, and I was toying with the idea of buying a 1976 model for my 40th birthday, in 2016. After lots of time spent looking and researching I came across the Seiko which is visually quite similar. There’s also a whole DIY community built around modding them, which is cool. I mentioned this to my dad, who’s also a watch guy, and he took it upon himself to buy me the watch as well as all the tools and information needed to properly look after it myself. It ended up being much more memorable than an old Rolex. I like having a mechanical watch that didn’t cost a fortune. I don’t stress about every scratch or scuff. I’ve yet to take it apart though. What… Read More

Read More No Comments