Girard-Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review

Girard-Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

A maker of their own movements (‘manufacture’), they are mainly known for their formal and dress watches as well as the famous ‘Tourbillon under three gold bridges‘ of 1884.

As mechanical watches regained popularity, there was a strong demand for sporty and especially dive watches. Looking back, it was probably started by the introduction of the Patek Philippe Nautilus, which demonstrated a market for high-end sport watches. After that, the marquee Swiss brands followed suit: Jaeger LeCoultre with the Master Compressor series, Vacheron Constantin with Overseas, Audemars Piguet with the Royal Oak and Offshore and Girard-Perregaux with the Sea Hawk.

Put yourself into the mindset of the person leading the effort. Your firm has literally centuries of proud history behind it; you’re not just going to bang out a ‘me-too’ design. You’re going to strive to integrate your firm’s themes and strengths into an entirely new design.

Voila.

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

  • Model reference 49950-19-632-FK6A
  • In-house GP033R0 automatic movement. 28,800 vph, 46 hour power reserve with sub seconds and date complications.
  • Water resistant to 1,000m (3300ft)
  • Double-domed sapphire crystal with dual-sided antireflective coating
  • Rubber-filled 120-click unidirectional steel bezel with raised numerals
  • Stainless steel case, 44.8mm by 15.1mm, 55.5mm lug to lug. 160g with strap.
  • Fitted rubber strap with butterfly deployant, on-wrist pushbutton micro adjustments. Standard 22mm lugs.
  • Automatic helium escape valve at two o’clock
  • Signed 7.8mm crown, at four o’clock, with integrated crown guards.
  • List price of approximately $9,700

Let’s take a close look at the dial and layout. Start with the figure-eight / infinity shape of the power reserve and sub seconds:

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

Also notice the date window – it’s very deeply set, with an sloped and mirror-polished well. You’ll not mistake this watch for any other.

As you’d expect, the case detailing and finishing is first-rate:

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

Interestingly, the Sea Hawk II is available on leather or rubber straps, but no bracelet. The strap is cut-to-fit, with a very nice pushbutton-release double deployant.

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

Those small holes on the ends are spring-release micro adjustments. This is a great idea, as you can expand the fit a bit on a warm day without taking off the watch. The clasp is brushed-finish and signed with the logo:

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

The rubber strap is very comfortable indeed. At 160g, it’s medium-weight and unobtrusive on your wrist. The bezel is raised-numerals with a rubber infill. Edging the bezel are square-cut crenellations that, combined with the rubber, make this the easiest bezel to grab I’ve encountered. Very grippy, very precise in feel, a very functional design.

Luminosity is supplied by multilayer SuperLuminova on hands, dial and bezel dot. Easily legible for 8-10 hours. Note an interesting design choice: the power reserve is lumed, but the second hand is not:

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

Most dive watches have either a matte-finish or glossy dial. The Sea Hawk is a very subtle speckle finish. This half-illuminated picture shows how in bright light the texturing is visible, but in anything less than full sunlight it looks matte black:

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

The movement is the in-house GP033R0. As it’s a solid case back, I have no pictures. Timekeeping was chronometer-grade, winding very smooth. Kind of what you expect from a top-tier Swiss diver.

For comparison purposes, here’s a shot next to my IWC. Notice how much better the anti-reflective coatings are on the Sea Hawk (The watches are nearly identical in size).

Girard Perregaux Sea Hawk II Watch Review   wrist time watch reviews

In fact, that one was one of the most striking things about wearing this watch; the crystal just isn’t there, to a greater degree than I’ve ever seen. A bit of research leads me to believe that they are using the services of a company called Econorm for their crystals’ coatings; serious optics-grade materials. Anti-reflective coatings are one of those small things that no one shops for, but make a big difference day to day.

Subjectively, the Sea Hawk II is a superbly detailed and finish diver from one of the old-school Swiss brands. Made in small numbers, it’s a brand and style that very few people will notice. I like the bold, unique design, first-rate visibility day or night, and of course the timekeeping too.

[Ed. note - I just wanted to mention that in addition to Paul's excellent review thoughts, I love how the crown guards and right strap lug are designed together for a very slick, integrated look. This is a fantastic high-end diver that should be on people's list when looking to spend in the $10,000 range for a top-notch luxury diver that actually has credibility "in the field."]

8 comments
EvanYeung
EvanYeung

Not to be an ass or something, but I do believe that the Royal Oak came before the Nautilus. It was AP who started the entirely new category of high-end sport watches.

CG
CG

Like the dial texture, like the legibility and anti-reflective coating is one of the best... The micro easily adjustable deployment is unique and no doubt will spread to other manufacturers. Dislike... Nothing really, looks like it could stand up to diving abuse. Nice review.

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

It is quite nice, but looks to be more of a caricature of a watch than an actual watch. It is a bit googly-eyed and exaggerated. I love the handset and legibility, but scoff at the sub seconds; centrally mounted seconds would have been much more appealing. The date window and placement is awesome, but the rubber strap looks to be very much an afterthought: the deployment is amazing, but the rubber itself looks like it wanted to be integrated, but then kind gave up and now looks aftermarket, with the corners coming up past the lugs.

The sloped bezel is nice - is it filled with rubber? It is apparently identical in size to the IWC diver, but obviously wears much larger thanks to the crown guard system a la Seiko.

I like it, but not $10k worth of like. I would expect to see dramatic discounts on this in the not-too-distant future, as you don't have to spend that kind of money to get this type of functionality.

Snow1
Snow1

@Kris C lol this fool. every post he comes and comments like he really understand watches. but every time without fail he espouses opinions that demonstrate how idiotic he is. Yesterday he says he was shocked the JLC NAVY SEALS watch didn't go for 20K now he expects "dramatic discounts" off of a 10k in house movement watch from GP. Just because you read the blog doesn't mean you are an expert so save us your idiot ideas and opinions. The random processes in your brain that generate your incongruent ideas are beyond me. maybe i could see your discount expectations if you didn't like the watch ( i don't really) but you seem to love it.

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

@Snow1 lol this fool. Thinks 4 days ago was yesterday. Just because you own a calendar doesn't mean you know how to comprehend one, so save us your keyboard diarrhea.

You should also learn how to read, go back in time a few days and review that post again carefully.

You're one of the sheep that think because a movement is in-house you can charge out the ass for it, but at the end of the day it's a time-only with sub seconds, power reserve and a date function - how complex. We can all get the same thing from, say, the Seiko group (uncomplicated in-house movement in a dive watch) lacking maybe only the completely useless depth rating - is the argument that there is $9,500+ worth of water resistance here?

Considering you only know how to comment about how other people comment (aka failtroll), I don't feel the need to compare my knowledge of watches or the industry. I'll possibly consider it when there is something to comment on coming from your end.

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

@Snow1 You really do have no idea what you're talking about. Shame. Stick around, kid. You can learn few things around here.

Snow1
Snow1

@Kris C the fact that you bring Seiko into a debate about GP says enough about you. why dont you go jerk off to yellow monster pictures or whatever the hell they are called?

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