Who makes Seiko watches?
Hi Watch Snob,
I don't own any timepieces worth mentioning, but I would like to change that. My budget will not allow me to purchase anything that would hold true meaning to one such as yourself, but I would still value your opinion nonetheless. I am considering a watch from the Seiko Premier series — the Kinetic Direct Drive, in particular. What do you think? And if my selection is horribly misguided, please, point me in a better direction.
Your pick is not horribly misguided at all. Actually, it’s charmingly appropriate for a man of your means. Seiko makes mechanical watches that receive little to no love from U.S.-based watch buyers. When they think Seiko, they think of a cheap quartz number their overweight high school science professor used to wear.
But Seiko, for its price range, makes some of the best stuff around. The Grand Seikos and Ananta collection are really, all hyperbole removed, some of the best mechanicals out there (whether they're worth the $7, 000 to $10, 000 they cost is another story). But, down in the Seiko Premier range, you’re just fine. You’ll own a watch that may not attract a lot of “wows, ” but to the people that really know a good timepiece — like myself — you’ll have proved yourself worthy of at least a head nod, if not a handshake.
I know that you already said you did not like Cartier watches, but that was before the Cartier Calibre. What do you think about this particular watch?
Here’s the thing: Cartier is still Cartier, and it’s going to take a pretty spectacular Calibre to make me buy something in that little red box. As I told you before, Cartier has long rested on its branding to sell so-so watches at moderately to highly offensive prices. Now the company is making its own movements in a super high-tech facility in Switzerland (yes, I’ve seen it — it’s ugly and enormous), and with the Calibre, it is stepping in the right direction.
Is Cartier finally worth considering? It’s possible, but only time will tell how this movement really stacks up to what else is out there. For all we know, it’s just a Cartier produced ETA 2892, a la Hublot ripping off the Valjoux 7750 with its UNICO. My advice? Stay away, at least for now.