The Seiko ‘Black Series’ Grows, With New Diver And Solar Chronograph

If the photo above looks similar to you, its not déjà vu. Last year, Seiko hit us with February releases from a new “Black Series” of watches with reimaginations of the fan-favorite 1965 62MAS diver, its successor the 6105-8000, and the Alpinist field watch, all in black with textured dials and turquoise LumiBrite. Those were “limited editions” (with a very large run of some of them), and I thought that would be the end of the series. But now Seiko has brought out two more watches, a “King Turtle” diver and Solar Chronograph, in a similar color combo.
Both watches feature a stainless steel case with hard coating and a ceramic bezel which, at $725 for the diver and $700 for the Seiko Solar Chronograph, gives a good starting point point for the specs. The SRPK43 diver measures a big 45mm by 13.2mm thick with 22mm lug width and 45mm lug-t0-lug and should wear sizeable on a similar blacked-out stainless steel hard coated bracelet. The chronograph is more reasonable at 41.4mm by 13mm with an unfortunate 21mm lug width, and 45.9mm lug-to-lug.
Inside the King Turtle diver is the Seiko 4R36, a workhorse movement but a bit cheaper than the 6R35, so you lose a little bit of power reserve (41 hours here), but you also lose around $225 on the price tag. Otherwise, the diver has a uni-directional bezel, screw-down crown, screw-in caseback, and 200m of water resistance plus day and date. The Solar Chronograph gets six months of power on a full charge and has a running-second display, date at 4:30, 24-hour subdial, and a 1/5-second chronograph with a 60-minute counter and has 100m of water resistance.
The brand Seiko Solar Chronographs has made another tweak in the lineup by removing the textured dial that the three previous releases had. Now they both are a more matte grey/black (though its hard to tell which way they lean more without seeing them in person). The watches look like they’ll be available starting February, though when I’m not quite sure. We’ll update the story if more info becomes available.
Phew, okay. Now that we’ve got that out of the way, we can get on to something that hasn’t been said a thousand times before. I like these releases on paper, but being that Seiko already released three watches that I frankly think are a bit stronger, this feels a bit like checking a box and not adding much new to the Seiko lineup. I’ve never actually spent any time with the Seiko Solar Chronographs, so pipe up in the comments if I’m missing anything, but the SSC923 seems like a fine release. That’s it. By getting rid of the great texture on the dial that the original Black Series had, it just feels a little flat. More than anything, it seems like a watch for someone who is just browsing the catalog looking for a black Solar Chronograph.
The new black “King Turtle” diver is similarly a bit flat compared to the first releases, but I like it a little more than the Solar Chronograph. I think the combination of both a bigger case and black color across the entirety of the watch gives me a bit of “AP-Offshore-End-Of-Days”-vibes. At 45mm x 13.2mm, it’s actually much bigger than the “End of Days.” Yes, it’s another blacked-out watch, but hey, at least I am consistent, and the heart wants what the heart wants. But that heart keeps wanting last year’s SPB335 a little bit more. I wonder if those are still around…

Grand Seiko Sport Caliber 9S 25th Anniversary

When the Caliber 9S debuted in 1998, it ushered in a new era of Grand Seiko mechanical watchmaking. An entirely new movement, Caliber 9S was designed from scratch to deliver the high precision and excellent durability for which Grand Seiko was already renowned. It became the platform on which all Grand Seiko mechanical watches would be built, giving rise to a full series of movements with different functions, escapements, and complications. These include the revolutionary Caliber 9SA5 with its Dual-Impulse Escapement and Grand Seiko’s first mechanical chronograph, the Tentagraph. And, of course, there have been GMT watches in a diverse range of styles, including several timepieces with Hi-Beat movements.

To celebrate 25 years of Caliber 9S mechanical watchmaking, Grand Seiko is releasing two new GMTs in its Sport and Elegance Collections, each drawing inspiration from the skies over Mt. Iwate in Iwate Prefecture, where all Grand Seiko mechanical watches are hand-assembled by skilled craftsmen and women.
The new Sport Collection GMT watch features a dial that illustrates the sea of clouds rarely seen at daybreak, when still, humid air forms dense clouds that overlap with one another to create a beautiful tapestry. The blue color is inspired by the sky over Mt. Iwate, the peak visible from the Grand Seiko Studio Shizukuishi, when it is blanketed by this sea of clouds.
The clear sapphire crystal case back, meanwhile, provides an invitation to view a titanium oscillating weight, which has been made a light shade of blue through an anodic oxidation process.* This marks the first time that a Grand Seiko mechanical watch with water resistance to 20 bar has featured an exhibition case back. A rotating bezel with sapphire crystal in blue and white elevates the design while allowing for a total of three time zones to be read at once. And of course, a tried-and-trusted 9S mechanical movement powers the new creation. In this case, it is the Hi-Beat GMT Caliber 9S86, which provides stable accuracy thanks to its frequency of 36,000 vph, equal to ten beats per second or 5 Hz.

*Anodic oxidation treatment
A surface treatment in which metals are subjected to electrolysis so as to generate artificially an oxide film.
Titanium oxide film produces color according to the light refraction index, enabling the production of different colors by varying the thickness of the oxide film.

This anniversary limited edition of 2,000 will be available exclusively from the Grand Seiko Boutique Online starting in September 2023 before availability extends to the Grand Seiko Boutiques and select retail partners the following month.
With a sunray dial in the beautiful blue tone of the sky as seen from the peak of Mt. Iwate, the other anniversary limited edition adopts a profile from the Elegance Collection. A classic form prevails thanks to this creation’s mirror-finished bezel and case, gently curved lugs with a distortion-free mirror finish achieved through Zaratsu polishing, and a box-shaped sapphire crystal.
The timeless design features a classic profile, yet a see-through case back provides a view of the thoroughly modern 9S66 GMT movement, which has been outfitted with a titanium oscillating weight in Grand Seiko blue colored by the same anodic oxidation treatment. As with all Grand Seiko GMT watches, its ease of use is ensured through the local hour hand, which is independently adjustable so that precision is maintained even when adjusting the time according to one’s travels. And as with the Sport Collection’s limited-edition watch, the tempered blue GMT hand can be aligned to any time zone of one’s choice. The blue 24-hour scale printed on the pale blue sunray dial displays the second time zone, ensuring that subtlety and legibility distinguish this anniversary edition’s design in equal measure.

Grand Seiko Heritage 44GS Manual-winding

In 1967, Grand Seiko introduced the 44GS. With its distinct case, distortion-free finishing, and mesmerizing dial, the 44GS came to embody the Grand Seiko Style. In 2013, Grand Seiko unveiled the modern interpretation of the design, adapting the brand-defining model from ‘67 to more contemporary standards. In 2022, we saw the release of a new mid-size 44GS design with the smallest case diameter at 36.5mm of the series. This Grand Seiko introduction presents two new mid-size 44GS references in the Heritage Collection, SBGW297 and SBGW299.
At 36.5 mm in diameter, 11.6 mm in thickness, and just 42.7mm in length from lug tip to lug tip, the cases of SBGW297 and SBGW299 feature proportions closer to that of the ’67 original, even coming in a bit smaller in width, though slightly thicker than the historical model. To achieve this, every aspect of the case’s construction had to be reconsidered to take full advantage of Grand Seiko’s slim, manual-winding Caliber 9S64.
The case finishing is immediately eye-catching and polished using Grand Seiko’s signature Zaratsu method. These mirror-polished planes are contrasted against surfaces adorned with Grand Seiko’s hairline finishing technique. Both techniques are performed via a hand process by a dedicated Grand Seiko artisan, and these skills take years to master.
The dial of SBGW297 is rendered in white, and SBGW299 has a cool, dark-blue dial. Both feature a dramatic sunray pattern that plays beautifully with the light, creating countless combinations of light and shadow. The bezel, multi-faceted indexes, and hands have also been reimagined to fit the scaled-down dimensions. Protecting the dial, a box-shape sapphire crystal imparts warmth to the design, further connecting the watch to its mid-century predecessor.
Both models come paired with a matching stainless steel bracelet. Drilled lug holes and an 18mm lug width allow for endless leather strap combinations.
Caliber 9S64 is a mechanical manual-winding movement hand-assembled by the tremendous craftsmen and women of Grand Seiko Studio Shizukuishi. 9S64 is tested in six positions over 17 days — which exceeds the chronometer standard — to comply with the Grand Seiko Standard of -3 to +5 seconds mean daily rate in static conditions. When fully wound, it also features a 72-hour power reserve.
For the first several years after the birth of Grand Seiko in 1960, each watch was designed with precision as its primary aim and each one looked different to the rest. In 1967, everything changed. A young designer was tasked to create a watch that would set a style for the future of Grand Seiko and that would establish its unique design language. The result was the 44GS, a watch that embodied the nine design elements defined in the Grand Seiko Style. This modern re-interpretation of the original 44GS expresses anew the essence of Best Grand Seiko Replica Watch.

Grand Seiko Sport Spring Drive GMT Triple Time-zone

Grand Seiko makes many GMTs. At current count, there are no fewer than 40 watches that feature a GMT complication across the Elegance, Heritage, and Sport collections with options in Spring Drive, Hi-Beat, and 9F quartz movements. The issue, of course, has been that the sporty GMTs with Spring Drive or Hi-Beat movements have only been available in a hefty 44mm-wide case. That is, until recently.

The calls for a smaller GMT reached a steady din over the last few years, and in 2020, Grand Seiko Sport Spring Drive GMT Triple Time-zone delivered a new collection of 40.5mm-wide Spring Drive GMT watches with a new ceramic bezel, 200M of water resistance, and a new bracelet with a micro-adjust. This is the Grand Seiko Sport Spring Drive GMT Triple Time-zone that so many of us have been waiting for and it’s also one of the most well-finished and toughest travel watches out there at its price point, and above. As of now there are four versions of the 40.5mm Spring Drive GMT: the SBGE253 with black dial and black bezel; the SBGE255 seen here with blue dial and blue bezel; the SBGE257 with green dial and green bezel; and the LE SBGE263 ‘Eagle’ dial for the U.S. market. These also have a new fixed ceramic bezel, unlike the larger 44.2mm Spring Drive GMT which has the sapphire crystal insert over the rotating bezel.
Naturally, the SBGE255 and its stablemates are “true” GMTs that have an independently adjustable hour hand for local time. The first position of the crown allows you to set the hour hand, and the second position adjusts both local time and GMT hands. This makes it so there is no quick-set date function, but the independent hour hand easily allows you to move both forward and backward when setting the date. While it’s certainly possible that the minds at the brand are already working on it, Grand Seiko Sport Spring Drive GMT Triple Time-zone has not released a two-color ceramic bezel the likes of which you can see on Rolex and Omega GMT watches. Due to this, the rehaut (chapter ring) has the day/night colors in silver and blue with odd numbers from the 24-hour scale that complement the even hours on the bezel. As with any fixed-bezel GMT, these new Grand Seikos allow tracking of two time zones and not three. Some will find this to be unacceptable, and that’s reasonable if you need that functionality, but I think two time zones is more than sufficient for a vast majority of people. And again, just because Grand Seiko didn’t have a rotating ceramic GMT bezel version at launch doesn’t mean we won’t get one in the future.
Measuring 40.5mm-wide with a 48mm lug-to-lug height (the end links extend a bit and measure 51mm) and 14.7mm-thick with 200M water resistance, the SBGE255 and its stablemates have been a long time coming for so many who found the 44.2mm case to be prohibitively large. It’s not the thinnest GMT out there, but it’s far from the thickest. For comparison: The Rolex GMT Master II measures 40mm-wide/48mm L2L and 12.4mm-thick; the Tudor Black Bay GMT is 41mm wide/50mm L2L and 14.8mm thick; the Panerai Luminor GMT PAM1535 is 42mm-wide/52mm L2L and 13.5mm-thick; and the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M is 43.5mm-wide/50mm L2L and 17mm-thick (albeit with serious water resistance). If you want to go even further, the Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra GMT Worldtimer comes in at 43mm-wide/50mm L2L and just about 15mm-thick.
This new case has the hand-finishing you’d expect from Grand Seiko Sport Spring Drive GMT Triple Time-zone with alternating brushed and Zaratsu-polished surfaces, as well as some nice chamfering along the sides. The hand-finishing applies to the dial, as well, with the diamond-polished hands and indices, the latter of which has some of the finest facetings I’ve seen both at this price point, and above. These faceted indices glimmer when they reflect light and, beyond aesthetics, it also really enhances legibility in low light. Speaking of legibility, it’s very good overall when you consider the sapphire crystal has a single layer of AR coating, as opposed to double. A little glare is unavoidable, but even the shots I took under direct light are legible.
In terms of finish and quality, the case is as good as it gets. The new 40.5mm steel case size wears very comfortably and is pretty balanced on the wrist. Yes, on paper it is on the thick side at 14.7mm, but the polishing and beveling on the case, along with the slope of the ceramic bezel, goes a long way in detracting from the heft. While not a direct competitor as far as price goes, it’s actually a little slimmer than something like the Tudor Black Bay GMT (and has just as much water resistance). As for case and dial finishing, I am open to hearing suggestions that are comparable not just at this mid-four-figure price point but in the low five-figures. You just won’t find this level of case finishing from Rolex or Omega, let alone anything hand-finished.
Beneath the enclosed case back is the Caliber 9R66 Spring Drive movement, which has been Grand Seiko’s go-to Spring Drive GMT since it was introduced back in 2006. If you’re not familiar with Spring Drive, I highly recommend this article explaining it, but in brief, it is largely a mechanical movement that replaces the escapement with what Seiko calls a “tri-synchro” quartz regulator. It does not use a battery and is powered by a mainspring, like every mechanical movement. It is not a quartz movement or a hybrid meca-quartz — it is a Spring Drive. I’ve heard buffoonery about Spring Drive being more quartz than mechanical, but we don’t need to entertain that any further.
The new Grand Seiko Sport Spring Drive GMT Triple Time-zone in a 40.5mm case excels in finishing quality, has a very nice ceramic bezel, 200M of water resistance, is a true GMT with independent hour hand, and has a brand new bracelet that, while far from perfect, is a serious upgrade and has a micro-adjust clasp. There are downsides of course as it only tracks two time zones due to the fixed bezel, and perhaps the case is still on the thicker side for some people’s tastes (though I’d absolutely recommend trying it on before dismissing).

Grand Seiko Elegance 25 years of innovation and evolution

For six years after Grand Seiko was created in 1960, each watch was tested, in-house, to the highest international “chronometer” standard. However, in 1966, a new, higher, standard was set and, from that day to this, every Grand Seiko mechanical watch has been tested to ensure that it meets the “Grand Seiko Standard”.

In 1998, the bar was raised again. With the introduction of the first 9S calibers, new levels of performance had been reached and so a new and even higher “Grand Seiko Standard” was set. Today, before it is cased, each 9S mechanical movement is assessed over the course of 17 days in six different positions that reflect real-life usage and at three very different temperatures, 8, 23 and 38 degrees Celsius.

In 2023 when the Caliber 9SC5 TENTAGRAPH was developed, a further refinement was made to the standard, specifically for chronographs. It requires that every chronograph movement is tested for an additional three days with the chronograph in continuous operation.

Since 1966, the “Grand Seiko Standard” has been a challenging target that every Grand Seiko mechanical watch must reach. Times change but Grand Seiko’s commitment to industry-leading standards never will.
Caliber 9SA5 is Grand Seiko’s most precise mechanical movement in more ways than one. Thanks to its 36,000 vibrations per hour, its Dual Impulse Escapement and its Free-sprung Balance, it keeps time with a precision rate of +5 to -3 seconds a day, but its accuracy extends also to the way the date is presented.

In most watches, the date takes several hours to change but Caliber 9SA5 has a special mechanism that ensures that it changes within the blink of any eye. At the heart of this mechanism is a date indicator drive wheel that is just seven millimeters in diameter. Its springs and movable date finger, all made with MEMS technology, ensure that the date changes instantaneously. Even though it is hidden from view, this date-change mechanism is beautifully finished by Grand Seiko’s craftsmen and women for whom precision and craftsmanship are matters of equal pride whatever the component, visible or not. To watch the date change in a Caliber 9SA5 watch is to appreciate the value of their skill.

Seiko Sport Spring Drive 3days model

One thing to love about Seiko is its initiative to develop accurate watches. A good example is the Seiko Spring Drive movement, which has the qualities of a mechanical calibre but, at the same time, the accuracy of a quartz watch. Find out below what makes this extraordinary movement special.
We want a mechanical watch’s high torque with an electronic watch’s high accuracy. To achieve this perfect combination, Seiko created the Seiko Spring Drive movement — a unique technology conceived by Yoshikazu Akahane in 1977. Seiko even claims that this movement has an accuracy rating of 1 second per day. This movement is used in Seiko’s expensive models like the Credor, Grand Seiko, and Seiko Prospex.
The short answer is that the Seiko Spring Drive gets all the energy from a wound spring. But to expound on that, the mainspring is connected to a gear train that looks a lot like that of a mechanical watch. The difference is that the wheel at the end of the gear train turns continuously in one direction. While in a standard mechanical movement, it turns back and forth. If you’re having a hard time imagining the set-up, the picture above might help.
Another thing to note is Seiko’s genius innovation called the Tri-Synchro regulator, which can control three types of power. These are the mechanical power (mainspring), electric power (IC, quartz oscillator), and electromagnetic power (rotor, stator). The regulator then coordinates these power sources.

As seen above, the Seiko Spring Drive has a quartz oscillator and an integrated circuit but no battery. You might wonder how both of these parts get powered. The power is generated by the rotor and the coil blocks, like how a bicycle dynamo creates electricity from a rotating wheel.

The electricity that we get from the rotor then activates the IC and the quartz oscillator. In particular, the oscillator produces 32,786 Hertz, while the rotor makes 8 turns per second. This electric power then makes the watch’s hands tick. Overall, you can say that the Seiko Spring Drive is a combination of modern and traditional watchmaking techniques.
Accurate and precise. The Spring Drive was made to compete with quartz watches’ accuracy. In particular, it has a rating of +/- 1 second per day, which is twice as accurate as of the most precise superlative chronometer of Rolex. To add, it is significantly more accurate than your average COSC-certified watch.

Long power reserve. Apart from accuracy, the Spring Drive movement also produces a longer power reserve compared to your average mechanical watch. To be specific, it can deliver 72 hours or 3 days of power reserve.

Glide-motion. You might have noticed that the seconds hand of your mechanical watch “jumps” from one second to the next. But the Spring Drive movement makes it glide through the dial. While this doesn’t affect a watch’s timekeeping abilities, it is aesthetically pleasing to many watch enthusiasts.
Expensive. It is no secret that the Seiko Spring Drive is one of the most advanced watch technology. Thus, it takes a lot of time and money for Seiko to produce one. Of course, these factors would translate to the watch’s price tag. The Seiko Spring Drive is proof of Seiko’s excellence when it comes to technology. This useful and efficient movement showed us that a non-battery-operated watch can be almost as accurate as a quartz watch.

Grand Seiko Elegance Collection Spring Drive “Hana-ikada.”

If you’re Grand Seiko, how do you make your best-seller, the SBGA413 “Shunbun,” even better? Put it in rose gold, of course.

That’s exactly what Best Grand Seiko has done with the new SBGY026 “Hana-ikada,” a new limited edition of 100 pieces that features a familiar, pale pink dial, but now in a rose gold case. If you know Grand Seiko, you’re probably asking yourself: “from which pale pink corner of Japan’s beautiful natural world did Best Grand Seiko take inspiration for this delightful new limited edition?”
Well, after the spring equinox (i.e., the “Shunbun”), comes real spring – “warm winds flutter Japan’s cherry trees, setting the pale pink petals through the air,” Grand Seiko says. If this is Japan’s version of “April showers bring May flowers,” then, well, the Japanese have a way of framing things much more romantically than Americans ever could.

And this romantic state of mind is reflected in every detail of the new Hana-ikada. Matched with a rose gold case, the effect of the subtle pink dial is enhanced. While in some light and at some angles the pink tone of the Shunbun is hardly noticeable, it’s suddenly hard to miss on the Hana-ikada. Vintage collectors, especially vintage Patek collectors, go absolutely nuts for “pink-on-pink” anything, and that’s because it almost always looks drop-dead gorgeous. It’s hard to replicate the charm of a vintage pink-on-pink watch in the modern world, but Grand Seiko’s managed to do something gorgeous that stands on its own with the SBGY026.

Though the dial of the SBGY026 is flat, the way the light hits the textured dial makes it seem more curved than the titanium Shunbun – there’s also no rehaut, no date, no power reserve. In other words, no distractions. The dial’s finishing is on full display. Inside the SBGY026 is the manual-wind Spring Drive caliber 9R31, perhaps most notable for its dual-spring barrel, meaning it has two mainsprings allowing for a 72-hour power reserve. There’s a sly little power reserve indicator on the back of the movement (and visible through the sapphire caseback), the absolute best place for a power reserve indicator. It’s accurate to +/- 15 seconds per month, and the Best Grand Seiko Spring Drive movement means the seconds hand sweeps smoothly across the soft pink dial. The rose gold case measures 38.5mm x 10.2mm. It’s polished, wears slim on the wrist, and it’s got applied and matching indices. Grand Seiko released a handful of impressive sport watches this week too – more on those coming soon – but to me, a watch like the SBGY026 is Grand Seiko in its purest form. A slim, dressy watch, beautiful textured dial, Spring Drive caliber, and not much more. It comes on a brown croc strap with a three-fold clasp that is (of course) gold.

Grand Seiko Evolution 9

Grand Seiko introduces its third watch release of 2023. This time, it’s a deep-blue-dialed addition to the Evolution 9 collection boasting a five-day power reserve. The new SLGA021 finds inspiration for its dial in the quietly rippling waters of Japan’s Grand Seiko Lake Suwa right before dawn. The opaque indigo dial has been carefully crafted to reflect these soft waves that delicately adorn the lake’s surface. The sweeping Spring Drive seconds hand adds to the tranquil scene as an embodiment of the distant breeze that shapes the water with its ghostly presence. As always, the brand’s signature touch of poetic artistry captures a scene beautifully and turns it into yet another visually stunning textured dial.
It seems that Grand Seiko is off to a great start in 2023. Having already begun its 25th-anniversary celebration for the 9S movement with the release of the SBGH311 and SBGR325 limited editions, the brand is preparing itself for a big year. I’d wager that we’ll see another release or two before the year’s biggest reveals at Watches and Wonders in March. But for now, let’s focus on the launch of the latest addition to the Evolution 9 collection — the Grand Seiko SLGA021 Lake Suwa.
I’ve already told you about the watch’s rippling dark indigo-blue dial and the natural scene that inspired it. But what about the dial’s frame? Grand Seiko is known as a brand famous for its beautifully crafted textured dials. But a masterpiece of design and craftsmanship deserves a worthy frame. You wouldn’t put a Rembrandt in a black plastic frame from IKEA, would you? Having seen a couple of Rembrandts in The Hague’s Mauritshuis museum last weekend, I can confirm you would not. Much like a beautiful painting, the dial is given a worthy frame in the form of Grand Seiko’s Evolution 9 case. At 40mm in diameter, 47.9mm from lug to lug, and just 11.8mm thick, it lands firmly within the sports-watch sweet spot. And below the double-domed AR-coated sapphire glass, the dial, markers, and hands can shine like Zaratzu-polished fish scales in the dark waters of Lake Suwa.
But the SLGA021 is much more than just a pretty dial and a great case. Underneath the dial, inside the Evolution 9 case, you’ll find Grand Seiko’s 9RA2 movement. This Spring Drive caliber has an approximate power reserve of 120 hours. As the dial text at 6 o’clock reveals, that’s five days of timekeeping. That’s something it does rather well with an average rate of ±10 seconds per month (or ±0.5 seconds per day). The watch’s sapphire display back will allow you to admire the movement as well as check on the power reserve indicator on the back. So, with the Grand Seiko SLGA021 we have a great dial, a brilliant movement, and a case described by the brand as capturing the essence of Grand Seiko. What’s not to love?
Before wrapping up and moving on to price and availability, I wanted to touch upon some of the final specs. The Grand Seiko SLGA021 has a screw-down crown, making it water resistant to 100 meters. It is also magnetism resistant to 4,800 A/m and weighs approximately 172g (on the stainless steel bracelet). I’ve gone on record stating my preference for Grand Seiko’s Elegance Collection, more specifically, the SBGW231. But I must admit that the Evolution 9 models are slowly but surely gaining my favor. And this dark blue dial will surely haunt my watch dreams for the coming weeks.

Grand Seiko Spring Drive Chronograph GMT

  1. Running on caliber 9R86, it features a vertical clutch and column wheel design and an accuracy rating of +-15 seconds per month (which extends to the elapsed time), making it the world’s most accurate spring-driven chronograph. In addition to the chronograph feature, which can measure elapsed time up to 12 hours, Grand Seiko also included a GMT complication for even more functionality. Altogether, caliber 9R86 has more than 400 parts, and each movement is hand assembled by the skilled craftsmen and women of the Shinshu Watch Studio.
    Today, Grand Seiko is unveiling reference SBGC240, the latest addition to their Grand Seiko Spring Drive chronograph lineup and a limited edition honoring Seiko founder Kintaro Hattori and the 140th anniversary of the company he started. Those familiar with Grand Seiko’s chronograph lineup will likely see some notable design changes here. Let us first turn to the bezel. The base of the bezel features a distinct dodecahedron shape, and it’s rendered in 18k yellow gold. The outer section of the bezel is zirconia ceramic. It is worth noting that this is a solid piece of ceramic and not simply an insert. It’s fixed, colored in black, and features a highly-legible tachymeter scale, the latter detail lending to the sporty look of the watch. Another noteworthy change is the redesign of the chronograph pushers. They’ve been scaled down in size, and they’re no longer screw down like they are on references SBGC201, SBGC203, and SBGC205. The goal was to streamline the design without sacrificing any functionality (the case is rated to 10 bar) or ease of use. Like the bezel, the pushers and the crown are done in 18k yellow gold. The case, measuring 43.8mm across and 16.1mm thick, boasts a beautiful mix of finishing. The top surfaces are given a hairline finish, and the sides are polished to a distortion-free reflection only achievable through Grand Seiko’s Zaratsu method. Around back, an exhibition case back shows off the stunning 9R86 caliber. Chronograph functionality is arranged in an incredibly legible way on the dial. A 30-minute register is positioned around two o’clock, a twelve-hour register below that at four, and an active seconds hand is placed at nine. Additionally, there is a power reserve indicator around seven. A GMT hand allows for tracking a second time zone. The dial is black, and it features gold-tone accents throughout. The chronograph second hand is rendered in silver, color-matching the hands on the two chronograph counters.
    Reference SBGC240 is paired with a five-link stainless steel bracelet featuring a three-fold clasp with push button release. The clasp features an 18k yellow gold emblem marked with “GS.” Additionally, the watch comes with a crocodile strap with gold-tone stitching.

Grand Seiko Sport Mechanical Hi-Beat 36000 200m diver

Grand Seiko has just unveiled their two newest recreational diver’s watches, SBGH289 and SBGH291. These two additions to the Sport Collection feature Grand Seiko’s Hi-Beat 36000 movement, caliber 9S85, which has 37 jewels and boasts an accuracy rating of +5 to -3 seconds per day and a power reserve of 55 hours.

Grand Seiko’s recreational Grand Seiko diver’s watch is an essential tool putting precision, durability, and ease of use at the forefront, offering everything a diver needs while eschewing any distracting or superfluous adornment. Case in point, the dial. Rendered in blue on SBGH289 and black on SBGH291, both dials feature a clean design pairing a large handset with a legible layout. The bold, multi-faceted indexes are affixed onto the dial via a swaging process that ensures their resistance against shocks, and the hands are differentiated in shape to enhance time telling even at a glance. Both dials are also matte, which creates less reflections and makes them easier to read. Ample amounts of LumiBrite is applied to the hands, markers, and bezel for nighttime visibility. There is also a small luminous pip near the date at three in compliance with ISO.

Rated to 200 meters, The case on both models measures 43.8mm in diameter, 14.7mm in thickness, and 51mm in length from one end of the lug to the other. SBGH289 has a case and bracelet made of stainless steel and weighs 206 grams. SBGH291 is High-Intensity Titanium, which provides notable scratch and corrosion resistance, as well as a substantial weight reduction at 142 grams. Every component of these two watches is made to last, with easy maintenance built into the architecture of the case. Therefore, the case, stem pipe, crown, and rotating bezel (which has a four-part design) allow for easy disassembly and re-assembly at Grand Seiko Service Centers.
Caliber 9S85 is a sophisticated Grand Seiko Hi-Beat automatic movement running at 36,000 bph. This modern caliber makes use of innovations to its mainspring, hairspring, escapement, and gear train to improve precision, longevity, and overall reliability. Grand Seiko manufactures this movement from start to finish at Studio Shizukuishi in Iwate Prefecture, the home of Grand Seiko’s mechanical timepieces.