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Author: Seiko Bernard




When I first saw this watch online I knew I wanted one. Unfortunately, it wasn't available locally here in Canada so I had to go and settle for the SPB001 (not that there's anything wrong with the 001, it's the same watch w/ SS bracelet and indices instead of roman numerals.) coz I thought the only difference was the bracelet. But I figured I like the roman numerals better so ended up returning that (tried selling here first) and getting this through ebay.

Anyway, back to the watch. After obssessing over it for a couple of weeks online, I knew I had to get it.

Here's some quick specs from Seiko's site:

SPB005
Calibre: 6R20
· 28,800 vibrations per hour
· Power reserve indicator
· Duration of full charge: Over 45 hours
· 29 jewels
· 208 parts
· Hand winding capability
· Engraved rotor
· See-through case back


Dial:



On to the review. The dial has a nice combination of being classic and modern at the same time. I say this because on first glance you quickly notice the roman numerals which are nicely placed. The long -ish hands also add to the classic feel of the watch. The hour and minute hands are two toned which makes it easier to tell time even from a glance, with the retrograde day, date and power reserve complications this was a subtle technique by Seiko.

The complications themselves have a nice layered execution which I think adds to the value of the watch. The power reserve and date complications seem to have 3 layers. The day complication had a modest single layer but with some nice details.




The middle portion of the dial features a wafer effect which I first thought unneccessarily made the watch look busy but after a week I feel it adds a different perspective to it. It kinda adds a balanced feel to it.

As typical Seiko, the Seiko logo is nicely placed and again looking closely you can see the quality of the craftmanship.

Reading the date can be abit hard at times, especially if the hands are blocking even for a bit. But overall I would say it is a very nice dial indeed! I can't stop looking at it.


Case/Crystal/Case back



The case features a dual finish of polished and brushed look. Again this gives the watch a sense of balance as you get just enough shine on the polished parts and a more rugged type look on the brushed parts.

The crystal is sapphire and I'm not sure if it has anti-refective coating on it or not. Taking pics was a bit tough due to glare and reflections bouncing off the crystal. But overall again, its easy to tell the time at a glance oven at an angle.

Now it took me a week before I took off the protective sticker for the see through case back and oh man this thing is downright beautiful! Seeing the back for the first time in real life (as opposed to online pics) was really a treat! If I liked the front of this watch the back is even better! I can't stop staring and taking pics of the back! Here you can really see Seiko's commitment to quality. The rotor is engraved instead of stamped with gold letterings and has a nice circular brushed finish to it. The "Seiko" logo, serial number etc of the case back also has a brushed finish instead of regular markings.




Movement:



The 6R20 is a bit better than the 6R15 found in Seiko automatics (Spirit and Alpinist I think). Vibrations per hour, (21,600 compared to 28,800) which gives it a bit smoother second hand sweeping motion. I've often fantasized of getting a spring drive but for now this sweeping motion is nice to have. It is hacking and hand windable. Winding it gives a satisfying gear rotation sound with a fair bit of resistance instead of other automatics where there's almost no feedback at all. It has a 45 hour power reserve.


Strap:



The strap is a black calf leather strap that employs the 3 fold quick release of Seiko. This is my 1st watch with this deployment system and I have to say I'm very impressed. It is comfortable and feels good on the wrist. Mine came with a bit of a kink as it was squeezed into a tight gift box but hopefully it will disappear when broken in.

I'm thinking of reversing the straps though. Having the strap-end on the inside of my wrist (as opposed to regular straps where the end is on the outside of your arm) I'm not accustomed to. I didn't notice it at first but I thought it looked longer than usual, cause I can see too much of the strap-end. Then I realized that I'm not used to seeing too much of it since it should be on the outside. (Have I confused you yet?) Anyway I'll try my experiment soon and update you on this.



Overall:



Overall I am more than happy with this watch. Seiko's commitment to quality and craftsmanship is really showcased in this wonderful timepiece. And for the price I paid I feel it is worth a lot more. It is both elegant to look at and comfortable to wear. This is definitely a keeper and look forward to years of service from me. Unless I get a gargantuan raise and can easily afford my Spring Drive without guilt, this is my grail watch.





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