Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE248 hands-on
When the Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE248 was released a month ago, I had a cautious enthusiasm for it, but reserved the final right to decide when I can see it in the metal. The vibrant blue and gold tone layout looks good at the press conference, but as we all know, sometimes renderings do not always translate into the delivered product. I hope to see this situation more in the future, and not limited to Grand Seiko. I hope to see the two-tone scheme limited to the case, while leaving the bracelet in the steel. It sounds good, but there is no old-fashioned feel. This is what many of us imagine when hearing the “two-tone” watch. For future versions of SBGE248, will I make an important thing in the list? A new bracelet. Although I like the beauty of the two-tone case on the all-steel bracelet, as with the previous models, I am eager for extra refinement and quality on the dial.
In an article in the New York Times in 2010, Japanese watch collector and former GPHG jury member Dr. Bernard Cheong talked enthusiastically about the brand, but has long sought more design diversity. He said: “I think that as foreign customers begin to accept fake Grand Seiko, the company will start making other shapes and designs sooner or later,” which is completely correct. Since Grand Seiko announced it as its own brand in 2017, it has grown and grown, especially in the United States.
As a relatively mainstream GMT luxury watch, SBGE248 is the perfect realization of this evolution, intentionally or unintentionally seeking to directly occupy more of the Western market traditionally occupied by Rolex. This is neither new nor surprising, but SBGE248 tried to do so without the incentive to drastically lower the price, which is a bold move by Grand Seiko.
In terms of execution, falling on the perfect shade of blue may be a single “make or break” design point. In a bright or well-lit environment, the end result is vibrant, but I also found myself almost admiring it in a dark environment, and it seemed to be cooling. Please see the picture above to understand what I mean. ) I think it’s hard not to look at this watch and think of the Rolex Submariner 116613LB with a blue and gold case. Personally, this is one of my favorite Rolex models, although I have always hoped that it will shine like the SBGE248. With the right light and the right angle (as shown in the picture above), you can see the subtle royal purple short westerly wind on the SBGE248. The important difference is that this purple hint is not always present, it reveals more complex color performance in Grand Seiko. Not that this is a comparison-anyone will be lucky to own any of these watches.
At this time, almost every luxury (and quasi-luxury) watch brand adopted ceramic bezels on their watches. However, Grand Seiko Spring Drive GMT SBGE248 still retains this rare component, which has a sapphire crystal insert on the rotating bezel. Compared to ceramics that remain relatively uniform, the sapphire crystal on the bezel allows for greater changes in the shades of blue. This is why the black border version will appear in different colors, such as the light gray blue here.
You would not expect a watch with gold hands and hands to be so clear and anti-glare, but this is not the case. Brush your hands to make it non-reflective, which is where Grand Seiko stands out. The blue gold is breathtaking, and the interaction between the two should be a role model for other brands. The hour, minute and GMT hands are all charming, as are the hour hands at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock. There is enough poetry in this article, so I will let my photos play an important role here.
Regrettably, this is not a valid model, so I did not see the movement of the 9R66 Spring Drive movement so smooth in seconds. You can read all about Spring Drive here, and the 9R66 GMT movement has a three-day power reserve. The stainless steel bottom cover of the stainless steel lion carving has not changed. Considering the waterproofness of 200M, this is a necessary move.
SBGE248 has a width of 44 mm and a thickness of 14.7 mm, which is one of Grand Seiko’s larger products, but the curved short lug can achieve a lug-to-lug distance of 50 mm, which is very wear-resistant. My wrist measures exactly 7.5 inches on the circumference for reference. I think that the process of using gold throughout the case is fairly balanced and not subtle. However, to clarify, results that are too “subtle” will fail for vibrant blue and gold watches. I think it will not be difficult for you to have the opportunity to introduce Grand Seiko to strangers, because you will receive a lot of comments.
Although Seiko-manufactured watches are still incredibly valuable compared to their counterparts in Switzerland, not all best quality replica watches can provide this functionality-they shouldn’t, given the products offered. Seiko’s dials, hand-processed, Zaratsu case polishing and craftsmen are exceptionally special in their field of expertise. They are Seiko’s “selected and selected” luxury watch brands on par with the general suspects in Switzerland.