Editor’s note: This Hands-on Review of the Grand Seiko SBGW283 has been photographed with the assistance of J Farren-Price Sydney. For our other detailed hands-on reviews, please head to our dedicated reviews section here. This is NOT a sponsored post.
What is it
Typical of the brands’s styling, the Grand Seiko SBGW283 is a handsome dress watch with a rather convenient for slim wrists 37.3mm diameter and an elementary hours, minutes, and seconds display. It is also very GS from a distance, having been raised on a foundation of multiple similar releases including the SBGH295 which to a ‘normal’ — so non-horophile human — features the same dial. This time around, a soft, more matt textured, light blue coloured dial marks the charm of the Grand Seiko SBGW283. And thankfully it is a non-limited edition release with fairly competitive pricing.
Grand Seiko’s US-only limited editions seem to be very hot for the past couple of years; it appears that the brand’s thinking is that after the waters have been tested, what better way to get GS enthusiasts more opportunity to buy similar products. In pretty much what can be called taking a leaf out of Omega’s playbook, the Japanese brand continues its domination over the seasons with the Grand Seiko SBGW283, this time marking the blue skies of Kishun (the start of summer over Mt. Iwate).
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Who is the Grand Seiko SBGW283 for
It’s for the debonair, non-fussed gentleman who also doesn’t go near water with a 10-foot pole considering the lack of water-resistance (the Grand Seiko SBGW283 is only splash resistant, which technically should mean 30m water-resistance). It’s a great starter luxury watch I believe; perfect for this holiday season to gift it to someone starting on their watch collecting journey.
The Grand Seiko SBGW283 features the calibre 9S64 which is a manual-winding mechanical movement introduced in 2011 measuring 28.4mm in diameter. The movement comprises 24 jewels, beats at the frequency of 4Hz (28’800 A/h) and offers a decent 72-hour power reserve.
The calibre 9S64 boasts of a ‘SPRON51’ mainspring and ‘SPRON610’ balance spring, both Seiko’s proprietary alloys that aide in better timekeeping mechanics (the former being thinner and longer and the latter more shock resistant and anti-magnetic). The calibre 9S64 provides mean daily timekeeping accuracy of +5 to -3 seconds per day and normal usage accuracy of +10 to -1 seconds per day.
Grand Seiko SBGW283 – The Hands-on Experience
Unlike like the Grand Seiko SBGA413G Four Seasons Heritage Shunbun and the Grand Seiko SBGE271 Kanro Elegance Collection Autumn Edition that we recently went hands-on with, the Grand Seiko SBGW283 Kishun features a more palatable sizing for someone with slim wrists such as myself.
The SBGE271 in particular is again a part of the brand’s Elegance collection, but it measures 40mm in diameter (and 43mm with crown), a substantial 15mm in thickness, and features a 48.5mm lug-to-lug but with an end-link to end-link distance of 52mm. This on my 16.25cm wrist looks a little big.
When it comes to sub-39mm diameter watches, I find that the Vacheron Constantin Historiques Cornes de Vache 1955 with the readings of 38.5 x 10.9 x 47.4mm is almost perfect.
The Grand Seiko SBGW283 comes very close to the Vacheron, and is rather manageable (and more dressy) when compared to the SBGE271. The measurements of 37.3mm diameter, 11.7mm thickness, and only 44.3mm lug-to-lug spacing are pretty spot on for slim wrists.
One could argue that the 11.7mm thickness technically is not along the lines of a traditional dress watch, but the presence of short bevelled lugs and box-shaped sapphire crystal take a lot of that height out of the game, and once strapped on, the watch does visibly sit very low on the wrist. The overall proportions of Grand Seiko SBGW283 are also good; take for instance the new Breitling Superocean Automatic 36mm. With a similar diameter, the 36mm Breitling Superocean frankly wears like a 34 courtesy the case architecture, the 18mm lug interhorn spacing and the only 42.41mm lug-to-lug spacing.
The inclusion of the 19mm lug interhorn spacing on the Grand Seiko SBGW283 means that after market strap options may not be as easy to find, but at least it makes this Grand Seiko wear excellent on my slim wrists.
Of course as is expected from any Grand Seiko timepiece, the contrast between different surfaces is superb and praiseworthy. The highly polished (and angled) bezel, Zaratsu-polished hands, and appliqué faceted indices all shimmer against a matt textured light blue dial, allowing the time telling devices to rule all that they survey. I also like how both the sapphire and the dial have a domed effect, that lends a more curved profile to the watch.
Another couple of details I respect are the exclusion of a date window; symmetric proportions; a knurled crown that’s easy to grip and the crown action sound is quite solid and feels non-flimsy if you know what I mean; and the lack of essays on the dial with a practical but minimalistic peripheral track.
That’s All Folks!
As Mt. Iwate lords over all that it sees, the sky turns a soft blue. Summer is beginning. The Grand Seiko SBGW283 is the perfect distillation of this beautiful imagery.
Retailing for 7’150 AUD, the Grand Seiko SBGW283 is a nice, compact, charming watch with a daily wearable blue colour that’s versatile and simple.
Nothing groundbreaking here, but there is beauty in its simplicity.
To find out more about the Grand Seiko SBGW283 and other Grand Seiko timepieces, please head to their 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.