Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands-On

Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands-On

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on After a successful run at Baselworld last year with well-received new models like the 44GS, Grand Seiko has announced a GMT version of their Hi-Beat 36,000 Automatic SBGH line. Based around the same 9S85 movement used in the three-hander, this new GMT combines two great features from Grand Seiko’s collection into a new watch with two unlimited versions and a gorgeous limited edition in green and yellow.

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on

Grand Seiko is offering the new Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT in three references, the black dial SBGJ003, the white dial SBGJ001 and the limited edition SBGJ005 which sports a lovely green dial with a yellow GMT hand.

The calibre used in these new Hi-Beat GMTs is new and features a proper jumping hour hand for travelling, allowing you to easily manage local time while employing the GMT hand to track the time at home. GMT complications are one of my absolute favourite functions on a watch, but many manufacturers design the feature backwards, applying the jump adjust to the GMT hand. This setup is good for timing phone calls in other timezones, but significantly less useful for travelling.

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on

The case design of the new SBGJ00X is based on that of the 44GS and the SBGH range, but has been rendered in steel with a width of 40 mm and a thickness of 14 mm. Fitted with a sapphire crystal front and back, those lucky enough to get one of the 600 piece limited edition will be treated to a titanium oscillating weight with a very cool yellow/gold anodic oxidized finish.

Typical to Grand Seiko, the dials are artwork. In green, white or black, the dials boast a hypnotic radial finishing that almost looks like very fine linen. Sitting atop this beautiful base are the amazingly bright and hand-finished markers and hands that have become a signature element on many GS designs. Nothing catches and plays with available light quite like a Grand Seiko.

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on

Legibility is excellent and each dial receives its own matching colour for the GMT hand. The black and red is rather sporty while the white and blue offers a more dressy appeal. With a simple GMT scale on the chapter ring, the Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT offers a feature set and design that makes it an incredibly versatile watch, easily capable of daily wear.

Fitted to a steel bracelet with brushed and polished links and a push-button clasp, the Grand Seiko Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT is arguably one of their best watches and is representative of not only the distinctive look and feel of their history but also the best of their technology. With a modern 5Hz movement, a subtle design that is amazingly focused on finishing and fine details and a very popular and practical complication, this is an excellent synthesis of both Grand Seiko’s Hi-Beat movement and their GMT complication and layout.

Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on Grand Seiko Hi Beat 36,000 GMT Watch Hands On   hands on

Being a Grand Seiko, the Hi-Beat 36,000 GMT represents one of the highest-end models born of the entire Seiko empire. With meticulous hand finishing and a 5Hz manufacture movement, this new GS will retail for $7,000 USD for the black or white versions and $7,250 for the 600 piece limited edition green dial. grand-seiko.com

25 comments
Zeitblom
Zeitblom

No doubt technically excellent, but it's tragic that they copied Rolex in one crucial particular ... That is, in firing their entire design department circa 1959.

Henryus
Henryus

Gorgeous looking dial and great finish on the polish. Dial texture is reminiscent of the snowflake dial, sublime, very well done.  GMT hands look tad conspicuous one all except the white dial version.

Tarak
Tarak

GS can easily compete with Rolex in terms of craftsmanship but falls short when it comes to marketing.  What a pity.

Fraser Petrick
Fraser Petrick

Grand Seiko is always #2 of my wish list - though $7000 for a watch is daunting.

ZL
ZL

I'm so taken by these watches, I have to write another comment! They're like Patek-level refinement, such perfect simplicity.

cptodd
cptodd

I think I need -- yes NEED -- the black faced version!

ZL
ZL

Each one of these pieces (or is it pictures?) draws me in and then holds me there mezmerized, trying to look closer and at the same time trying to take in the whole thing. This is what the best watches do.

SuperStrapper
SuperStrapper

That green dial variant is so totally want. Either the case wears bigger than 40mm, or the bracelet is a little small, or perhaps the case widening out past the dial makes it look bigger than it is, because just looking at the first wrist shot I would have guess more like 42mm, which would have made me even happier.

Ulysses31
Ulysses31

Lovely watch, quality through and through.  The rotor is interesting; it has a look of aged bronze, which is quite a contrast with the gleaming precision on display in the rest of the watch.  Unfortunately I doubt many people would pay $7250 for what is "just a Seiko".  If it ain't Swiss, they'll give it a miss.  This company really needs to learn marketing and hammer home the superior quality of their watches.

DG Cayse
DG Cayse

Ridiculous that the 24 hr indicators on the dial periphery is compromised.


Also, is this an automatic movement?

That back grid appearance looks like a gate on a POW camp.

X2Eliah
X2Eliah

5Hz? That's just 5 ticks per second... Entry-level miyota/seiko movements do 6 to 8 (i.e. 6Hz to 8Hz) - am I missing something here?

RandyTorres
RandyTorres

@Ulysses31  I agree that Seiko, for whatever reasons, is not a master of marketing it's products. Maybe they take the res ipsa loquitur position, i.e. the thing speaks for itself. They certainly have the budget and access to top marketing talent.  Be that as it may, I think that the GS brand has definitely established itself amongst the cognoscenti and each one of these GS watches will be evaluated on it's true merits and not some " if it ain't Swiss, they'll give it a miss" nonsense.  People that think that way tend not see much further than Rolex. That's a good thing, these watches are in short supply so more chance that one of us can get one!

rcajayon
rcajayon

@DG Cayse Oh what POW camp are you referring to?  Will add that to my bucketlist of "must see" places.   And would you have a better suggestion on how to render the 24 hour indicators on the chapter ring?

nateb123
nateb123

@DG Cayse  Where are the indicators "compromised"?  What does that even mean in this sense?  Every even number is there and there are markings for the odd numbers.


And yes, it's automatic.

aleximd2000
aleximd2000

@X2Eliah what happened man! You're lost in translation or you need an abbacus!!!

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

@X2Eliah 5hz = 5 full cycles per second. Each semi-oscillation (movement in each direction of the balance wheel) trips the escapement lever. So you get 10 beats (ticks) or releases of the main springs energy released via the escape wheel every second on this watch. 5 hz is very fast and few other movements are this fast or better. The Zenith El Primero chronograph is a well known 5 hz movement. And some Brequets run at 10 hz (72,000 bph) which yields 20 ticks per second!

Movements which tick 6 times per second are 3 hz (3 full cycles per second) or 21,600 beats per hour (bph). The more modern frequency these days is 4 hz (8 ticks per second) which is 28,800 bph.

Cheers.

XuanLiu
XuanLiu

@X2Eliah  Since this is a "Hibeat 36000", I believe it should be 10Hz.  Probably just a typo. 

Ulysses31
Ulysses31

@RandyTorres @Ulysses31 From what i've observed, as nonsensical a position as it is, it's one that still appears to be common.  I take some comfort in knowing that GS is quite highly respected in certain Rolex-only forums, which was somewhat surprising to me when I first noticed it.  I guess they just can't deny the quality of Seiko watches any more.  If only more people knew about it.

nateb123
nateb123

@RandyTorres @Ulysses31  Honestly, good.  I don't want people who think Rolex is the be-all, end-all of watches to even know Grand Seiko exists.  These watches have the look of finish and quality that it is difficult to find in pieces with many times their price.


This is about the only watch I like so much that I wouldn't mind having one in each colour.  I would wear them all regularly.

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

@aleximd2000 @X2EliahIf one does not know that the balance wheel moves the Swiss lever escapement (although invented by an Englishman) twice during each frequency cycle, it would be easy to think that the bph was incorrectly stated (doubled). I remember when I did not know that and had the same questioning. And so it goes, we all try to help expand each other's knowledge here on ABTW. No one knows it all. Cheers all.

aleximd2000
aleximd2000

@MarkCarson @aleximd2000@X2Eliahi know that man i was just making fun of him. I remember tehre was a time when I did not understand the difference between a chrono and non chrono watch and opted for the none because it was cheaper. Always see the bright side of the life.

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