Editor’s note: This hands-on review of the Grand Seiko SBGH271 has been photographed with the assistance of J Farren-Price Sydney. For our usual detailed hands-on reviews, please head to our dedicated reviews section here. This is NOT a sponsored post.
What Is The Grand Seiko SBGH271
The 40mm x 12.75mm Grand Seiko SBGH271 is the early summer version of the GS Four Seasons Heritage collection, featuring a dark green dial that’s intended to showcase on your wrist the world when “a refreshing summer zephyr blows over waving fields and grass”.
In person, the Grand Seiko SBGH271 features a textured dial which is exceedingly muted, and is fairly faint. It’s not at-first-glance-wow like say the SBGJ241 or the SBGJ249 but spend some time with it, and it begins to form a bond with you.
Alongside the Spring Shunbun SBGA413G also released globally is the Grand Seiko SBGH271 Rikka. For context, and we have talked about it in more detail here, Grand Seiko in 2019 launched a US-exclusive Four Seasons collection which they recently decided to make into a global phenomenon. Funnily enough, the US SBGH271 was listed as 12.9mm thick on the US website and 12.86mm on the Aussie one. Our callipers showed it as 12.75mm, so we will stick with that.
While the other summer watch the GS SBGJ249 retailed for 10’600 AUD, the summer Rikka Grand Seiko SBGH271 retails for 9’400 AUD.
J Farren-Price Sydney, 80 Castlereagh St, Sydney (02 9231 3299) and GS Boutique at Westfield Sydney
Who Is The Grand Seiko SBGH271 For
Funnily enough, while photographing it, I got the impression that the Grand Seiko SBGH271 looked like a one-person watch and a man’s only watch. It’s got something that says that the person buying it is not a watch collector but someone who wishes to have a distinct but quiet timepiece that will travel the road of life alongside.
Basic Specs Of The Grand Seiko SBGH271
The Grand Seiko SBGH271 features the Hi-Beat calibre 9S85 which is an automatic winding movement. It features 37 jewels, beats at the higher frequency of 5Hz, provides 55-hour power reserve, and has a normal usage accuracy of +8 to -1 seconds per day.
Both the Grand Seiko SBGJ249 and SBGJ251 feature the calibre 9S86 that is an automatic movement using the brand’s MEMS (Micro Electro Mechanical System) technology. It is the GMT version of the base calibre 9S65, and this MEMs tech is also found in the Grand Seiko SBGH271’s calibre 9S85. It uses a reverser gear train system, hardened components that help improve the durability of this reverser system, and a semiconductor manufacturing technology to produce watch parts.
Impressively, the hairspring in the Grand Seiko SBGH271 makes use of a new alloy called Spron 610. which was created to offer better impact resistance and magnetic resistance.
The Hi-Beat calibre 9S85 is also used in other recent watches such as the new SBGH295 (Sōkō Edition, and another US-Exclusive).
For movement nerds, the calibre 9S85 is part of the 9S family, that includes 9SA5 as the High-Beat 80-hours version, 9S86 as the High-Beat GMT version, 9S68 as the 3-day power reserve version, 9S66 as the 3-day power reserve GMT among others.
The watch face shows the functions of central hours, minutes and seconds, and a date at 3’o clock. It features an exhibition case-back, a screw-down crown and decent water resistance of 100m (10 ATM).
The Hands-on Experience
In the last couple of years, Grand Seiko has also jumped on the green dialled bandwagon. We have gone hands-on with three Grand Seiko green dialled watches in the recent past with the SBGE257, SBGJ241, and SBGJ251. And credit to the brand, such is their mastery over dial executions, that all these have distinct personalities.
In fact, under certain lighting, the new GS SBGE271 which technically features a black dial and a GMT complication also has a shade of green when viewed at certain angles.
The new Grand Seiko SBGH271 follows suit, and offers yet another green dial execution.
My personal favourite feature of the Grand Seiko SBGH271 dial is the combination of yellow elements mixed with a dark green texture dial; not only does this aide in legibility, it also adds a bit of spunk to the dial. It’s also more military coloured in person, and that further differentiates it from other watches. I also appreciate that the same attention to details and quality Zaratsu finish has been presented on the matching appliqué indices, brushed and polished hands, date window frame and the appliqué logo. One other element I like is the silvered date wheel colour, that is not white and adds something more to the dial and also matches the Grand Seiko branding at 12.
In terms of sizing, the 40mm x 12.75mm Grand Seiko SBGH271 fits fine on my ~16cm wrists, courtesy the 47mm lug-to-lug spacing. But if I were to compare it to say the fit of the similarly sized — 40 x 12.75 x 46mm —SBGA413G, I would say that for those with slim wrists, the SBGA413G is slightly better option. Not only is it lighter feeling with the titanium body and bracelet, but the 1mm lug-to-lug difference does make an impact especially when seen in conjunction with the larger 21mm lug interhorn spacing of the SBGH271.
Whether you are moved by the artistic take on the winds caressing the dark green blades in Japan or simply wish to own a beautiful timepiece in the hot colour of green and in-trend steel material, the Grand Seiko SBGH271 is definitely a hot summer hit.
To find out more about the Grand Seiko SBGH271 and other GS timepieces, please head to there website here, or visit their authorised retailer J Farren-Price Sydney at 80 Castlereagh St, Sydney (02 9231 3299). All images unless otherwise stated are ©WatchYaGonnaDoAboutIt.