The Glycine Combat 6 (Ref. 3890.19AT-LB9) comes in a mid-sized 43 mm case and, with its traditional layout, offers superb readability in any lighting scenario. Combine this with almost unrivaled reliability and robustness of the famous ETA 2824-2 Swiss-made movement (they prefer to list it as Caliber GL 224 in some of their ads) and an affordable price, and you get yourself an absolutely gorgeous “entry-level” pilot’s (sort of) timekeeper for a person looking for his or her first “real” Swiss watch.
Although it is odd to name a brand after an amino acid, Glycine does not seem to worry about that, bringing to market more and more affordable and nice-looking watches. Their new Glycine Combat 6 model will go on sale before the end of this year.
Judging by the looks of it, the Ref. 3890.19AT-LB9 model was definitely inspired by a military-styled Panerai.
They even employed a typeface, which is similar to Panerai’s trademark font both in shape and in the color of the SuperLuminova substance.
Of course, the shape of the body is different: the Glycine is circular, while Panerais normally come packed in bulky cushion-shaped bodies. However, while staying close to its source of inspiration, the Glycine Combat 6 is certainly not a vulgar rip-off of a popular model. Let’s call it an artistic reinterpretation.
Anyway, the Combat 6 is going to be eight to ten times cheaper than an average Panerai model and will certainly target a completely different group of customers that are only at the beginning of their journey in the land of fine watches.
For around €500, this is one of the best choices for those, who want to get themselves an entry-luxury timepiece, but just hate to pay their hard-earned money for something mainstream, like Tissot or Longines.
It is powered by a time-proven ETA 2824-2 Swiss-made automatic movement, which is visible through a transparent case back featuring a mineral glass. Like it is often the case with relatively inexpensive timekeepers, there is nothing particularly interesting to look at, though. I mean, the only thing that seems to differ this particular iteration of the caliber from millions of its siblings is the double “Glycine” inscription: all the rest is absolutely plane and sort of boring.
As far as I understand, besides the normal quality inspection, they don’t subject the newly arrived calibers to any extra regulation (again, like with most of the watches in the sub-€1000 price range,) so, even despite the mechanism’s good reputation when it comes to timekeeping, a visit to your local service person for a proper regulation may be in order after the first month of owning the gadget, but that, too, is sort of normal.
The black dial is also protected with a domed mineral glass, which will certainly be prone to occasional bumps and scratches, so you will have to wear it with care.
To my taste, this is the only problem here that deserves some attention.
Build Quality: 5/5
Overall Legibility: 5/5
Nighttime Legibility: 4.5/5
Value for Money: 4.5/5
Overall Rating: 4.5/5
Glycine Combat 6 (Ref. 3890.19AT-LB9) specification:
Movement: Caliber ETA 2824-2, automatic, 28,800 vph, 25 jewels, Swiss Made
Power reserve: 38 hours
Case: Stainless steel, transparent back
Size: 43.00 mm (crown not included)
Case height: 10.80 mm
Water resistance: 50 meters
Strap: Black calf leather on steel pin buckle
Crystal: Mineral glass, domed