In America we get upset at the notion that cool objects are sold elsewhere and not here. We have had to deal with this for years in terms of cars, electronics, and especially watches. Japanese companies such as Citizen and Seiko are well known in the US, but don’t exactly have the prestige that Swiss watches have. Regardless, in Japan these companies service the low-end and high-end markets equally.
I’d say that most of the interesting watches that Citizen makes are never officially sold in the US. They are made in limited numbers and sold in places all over Japan. The market there seems to gobble up limited edition pieces that appeal only to a select few. Well some of these have much wider appeal in my opinion, and you should know about at least some of them. You can get a good deal of them on eBay or other places online.
Here is one piece from the Citizen Alterna collection, model VO10-6662B. The all black watch shares a bracelet with certain Citizen NightHawk models. The look is highly angular and sporty, which makes for an interesting combination with the face which has style cues from mid 20th century formal watches. Shiny dagger hands pointing at large shiny squares number markers is a look not typically found in all black watches. It is what I would picture a Movado Museum Face watch to look like if it was at all legible for telling time.
Citizen made the right decision to keep the face free from too much clutter. The seconds hand is intentionally kept a darker color as to not take away from the face. Further, the date window is placed well, not disrupting symmetry too much. Inside the watch is a Citizen Eco-Drive movement, that as most of you know is light powered, meaning you never need a battery. I have owned several watches that contain this movement and have generally good things to say about them. They hold charges for a long time, and just need to be in sun or room light everyone once in a while to maintain good time. The movements are hardy and can take a beating too.
In my opinion this all black sporty-classy Citizen Alterna is a really nice looking watch. Though it is unique in its execution combining the seemingly opposed forces that are formal watches with activity ones, the end result works well making for a well-balanced watch that works for most occasions. The one pictured is priced at bit over $200 on eBay right now.
See Citizen Alterna watches on Amazon here.