The famous Grand Seiko line of expensive timekeepers has recently been updated with a limited edition model. Celebrating the 20th Anniversary of their signature Seiko Caliber 9F, the ultra-precise quartz movement that was first brought to market back in 1993, the Japanese watchmaker introduces their new Grand Seiko Caliber 9F 20th Anniversary Limited Edition (Ref. SBGX103).
As quietly as usual, the Japanese electronics manufacturer has updated the aviation-themed shock-resistant GA-1000 series. Their new Casio G-Shock GA-1000-2A features a sporty body, which is similar in its styling to that of the last year’s Casio G-SHOCK GW-A1000-1ADF Smart Access. However, this new “aviator” sports a lot more readable dial with analog and digital displays combined for (almost) perfect usability.
Although I always had an impression that the SARZ series of sporty automatic watches were sold only on the Japanese domestic market, it looks like this mildly refreshed MY 2013 Seiko SARZ033 collection will actually make it across the Pond and will probably make landfall not only in North America but, hopefully, here in Europe, too.
Seiko has released a number of limited editions recently. For this year, they introduce yet another rugged-looking model. Limited to just 300 numbered pieces, the new Seiko Prospex Landmaster Miura Everest (Ref. SBDB007J) is built to celebrate the indomitable spirit of Mr. Yuichiro Miura, a Japanese mountain climber who, being 70 years old, became the oldest man on Earth to ever climb Everest. Now, ten years later, the man prepares to reassure his position by making another go to the world’s highest mountain.
The year 2012 wasn’t exactly rewarding for the better part of the population. Greece didn’t default, Doomsday didn’t happen and Valve yet again failed to deliver HL:3. However, there were certain bright spots, too: Spain emerged victorious in the 2012 UEFA Euro cup and the European politicians somehow managed to prevent collapse of the single currency. The watchmakers from Europe and Japan, too, managed to introduce a number of great watches, although there was nothing truly revolutionary neither in terms of design, nor technical characteristics (here I am talking about mass-produced models, not some ultra-expensive one-offs).
First revealed in March 2012, Seiko Astron GPS Solar is finally available on most markets around the world. Although the collection is presented in four versions (two of them in titanium and two in much more massive stainless steel), the most interesting among them is, of course, this SAST001/007 (no, it has nothing to do with James Bond) model in hard-coated titanium, which is going to be limited to only 2500 pieces.
Although there are hundreds of Star Wars-themed watches there on eBay, most of them do not differ too much from the dirt-cheap jobs that your kids can get with their Happy Meal. This new Seiko Star Wars Stormtrooper (Ref. SDGC011) (and a whole plethora of other timekeepers dedicated to different characters of the SW universe), however, plays in a much higher league. Based on the iconic Seiko Ananta SPB021, the gadget comes powered by a high-quality self-winding movement and features a hard-to-scratch body crafted from hardened steel.
Besides the somewhat extravagant quartz-powered Prospex Marinemaster Golgo 13, Seiko has also recently revealed another “collaboration” model based on the same series of manga comic books: a rugged and grim Seiko Land Golgo 13 Automatic Limited Edition (Ref. SBDC021) equipped with a self-winding movement. Although not as dramatic as the Marinemaster, this one is a nice improvement on the original Prospex Fieldmaster (Ref. SBDC013), which it seems to be based upon.
A little bit too late for the diving season here, in the Northern hemisphere, the Japanese brand has presented their new Citizen Promaster Sea Eco-Drive (Ref. BN0100-51E) diving watch. Powered by their trademark Eco-Drive caliber (a quartz movement that recharges itself using solar radiation and -theoretically- doesn’t need its battery changed during the whole lifetime of the mechanism), the watch is offered in a surprisingly discreet body and is rated for whole 200 meters of water resistance: more than enough for an average skindiver.
Browsing Seiko’s Japan site, I stumbled upon this beautiful Credor Node J (Ref. GTWE896). Although powered by a quartz movement (albeit a very good one) and possibly offered only as a JDM model, the new timepiece teaches the major Swiss-based watchmakers a lesson or two about creating a watch, which is both elegant and discrete.