Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton, the American watch brand now under the Swatch Group umbrella, has had a strong year with well-received launches like their Intra-Matic 68 Chronograph. Recently, the brand announced the Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch – a contemporary, dressy offering that boasts a long power reserve and good bang for your buck. A good looking watch, it can verge on uninspiring, but let's take a look at what value is provided here.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On
All images by Ariel Adams

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton, has several lines of watches such as the Khaki Field, Broadway, and in this case, the Jazzmaster. Each collection is well defined – for example, the Khaki Field line consists of field watches while the Jazzmaster seems, from a quick glance at the collection, to consist of dressy watches with a slight twist to the design to make them more edgy or modern. It's quite a range, from watches like this quite conservative piece to something as wild as the Jazzmaster Face 2 Face II watch.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve is best described as a simple dress watch with contemporary sizing. With a 42mm case size and 50m of water resistance, this is sized and designed more like a sport watch than a dress watch but the dial elements and design are clearly dressier. With a minimal bezel, sloping tapered lugs, polished case band and simple, fluted crown, the case has a refined appearance.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

There are four dial color options – white, black, gold, and silver. All dials but the black are pictured in this article. While the white dial has a matte finish, the rest come with a sunburst finish. Compared to the pop and sheen of the sunburst dials, the matte white can look a little 'flat' – however, this may appeal to collectors looking for something more inconspicuous. I personally know several people who prefer this matte look as opposed to sunburst, and it's really just a matter of taste.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The watch is fitted with luminous dauphine hands – blue in color for the silver dial, polished steel for the black and gold dials, and gold in color for the white dial. Plenty of choice to go around here. An odd choice, was to use a blue color power reserve indicator hand for all dials except the black (which has a polished steel one). I feel like the watch would be better off with a power reserve hand that was of the same color as the hour and minute hands.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The applied hour markers and the applied Hamilton logo at the top of the dial is a nice touch and gives the watch a more premium look. What isn't a nice touch however, is the date window. It's no secret that I'm not a fan of date windows, especially when they seem sloppily executed like in the case of the Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve. The placement of the window on the dial betrays how small the diameter of the movement is. Additionally, the white of the date wheel contrasts in an unpleasant way with the gold and silver dials. Thankfully, the black dial comes with a black date wheel – so this is the one I would go for.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

If we're being honest, the watch does not bring anything to the table design-wise that hasn't been seen before. What it does offer that makes it interesting is the movement. The Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve is powered by the caliber H-13 movement with 80-hour power reserve. There is limited information online on the product page or elsewhere on the H-13. But given that Hamilton is part of the Swatch Group, we can take a leap of faith and assume that it is a similar, if not the same, movement found in the Tissot Powermatic 80. Essentially, it is a modified ETA 2824 with timekeeping rate lowered to 3Hz, a longer mainspring, and a new escapement in place.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

While this isn't haute horology or particularly rare, it makes for a nice change from the plethora of ETA 2824/2892 offerings at this price point. The movement comes with some decoration – primarily on the rotor and is visible through a display back.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve Watch Hands-On Hands-On

While it is unlikely to be heralded and celebrated like its sibling, the Intra-Matic 86 Chronograph, the Jazzmaster Power Reserve is a well put together watch for someone looking to start a collection or for a simple daily wearer for the office. The Hamilton Jazzmaster Power Reserve will be available from late November on a leather strap for a price of $1,245 or a 5-link stainless steel bracelet for $1,295hamiltonwatch.com

What do you think?
  • Thumbs up (22)
  • Interesting (13)
  • Classy (7)
  • I want it! (6)
  • I love it! (4)
  • Jonathan Smith

    Solid offering for the price… from the dial to the movement. Nothing exciting here, but a safe option for the novice buyer.

  • The silver dialed one is about it for me. The others have odd hand colors IMO (as the power reserve hand differs from the time hands). And the date window is not only plain, it just screams how small the movement is for the dial/case size. The price would be acceptable if this was a more interesting watch. The power reserve indication is too large and also cheap looking in execution. Had promise with some classy style going in, but then they screwed up things – snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

  • IG

    You need jazz hands and jazz wrist to wear this.

  • Mikita

    I’ve always had mixed feelings for Hamilton. They may look good on photos/renders, but when I see them in person, I’m usually kinda disappointed. The main problem are the “floating lugs” – you may see it clearly in the photo kindly provided by Praneeth:
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/69dada755142f824a36a8df9ec9a7f201e2fa6d0eecd54122f6ac83b97a39605.jpg

    Some other problem include somewhat oversized cases, which, in turn, leads to the unbalanced date placement (as Mark has pointed out); and on top of this – I feel like the design languages sometimes differ for cases and hands. For $1.3k these look somewhat overpriced, however – I’m sure they’ll appear on Ashford or Joma at 1/3 of retail as usual for Hamilton.
    P.S. My favorite modern line is the Broadway – I think some models are very close to perfection.

    • Pete Pete

      the lugs are awful.

    • When I design a case, my general rule is to place the centerline of the springbars on the same plane as the case back. Which is to say, the lugs are a little lower (2 to 3 mm) than the bottom of the case back. Yeah, this may not work for super large wrists, but for most wrists, this effective contouring makes the watch fit better (less flopping around) and and avoids the Frank Lloyd Wright cantilever “lugs in space” look. Odd how many watches don’t have the lugs extend lower than the case back. Too “design” either in 2D or simply does not take human anatomy into account. Cheers.

      BTW – my Octagon Watch Kickstarter goes live in less than 7 hours.

      • Mikita

        I believe that any competent watchmaker should consider the position of the watch on the wrist. Honestly, I am shocked that so few take this seriously. I had to skip so many otherwise nice watches simply because they were either floating on the wrist contacting with only the protruding movement department or floating as a surfing board. As we know, Japanese watches rule the entry segment; but they tend to have thicker movements which they try to mask with making pseudo-thinner cases which have some protruding department for the movement. Even if they make the lugs extend lower than the case, the center of the case back will be the only part to contact with the wrist. And there is another type, such as this Hamilton, – having a flat backside, but ignoring the human anatomy, as you said. Anyway, I really appreciate that you take this seriously – as it should be taken. Actually, 2 main issues which are constantly ignored by so many watchmakers are poor date implementation and poor wrist ergonomics. Bell & Ross are kinda overpriced, but I just appreciate the ergonomics of the round models and how seriously the take the date placement / wheel color etc.

        P.S. Noted! Good luck with the funding! Awesome value for $1,400

        • Yeah, too many thick watches have what looks like a thin case but they have a huge round “bubble” sticking down below the visible plane of the case & lugs. I know this makes the watch look thinner but it has the effect of making the watch appear to float above the wrist – which you may or may think is good. But the real problem is that these bubble backs provide a pivot point and the watches tend to wobble around on the wrist unless you strap them on really, really tightly. Oddly, my new Octagon watch looks taller than it is because I did not hide the bottom plane with inward contours (which my case maker tried to get me to go for). So it looks taller on the wrist than its 9.8 mm thickness. So it has wrist presence yet still slips under most shirt sleeves. Cheers.

    • 200 Fathoms

      Yes, bad.

    • Berndt Norten

      The Hamiltons I have worn or held in shops have always underwhelmed me. Gimme an old Hamilton pocket watch and I’m in clover.

  • Tea Hound

    #dropthedate

  • Ian john horwood

    I’ll stick with my snxs75 ‘s, ( they look better in reality than some of the picture’s) for £100 all in each including deployment brown leather strap, far more interesting small and swarve at 37mm and saving a huge dollop of money in the process, and keep time as good as the next or better.

    • Pete Pete

      this hamilton is rather seiko-esque. which is a good thing.

      but seiko offers higher quality at lower prices. so even though I like this hamilton – apart from the lugs – I’d definitely go for seiko instead (not necessarily the lowest end snxs75s that you mention, though).

      • Ian john horwood

        In reality this little seiko is the watch that can, its absolutely brilliant, wearing it 24/7 defys its lowly price a hundred times its magnitude. Its dial and looks defys its price as any 5-7 grand rolex oyster / datejust at its price etc, its time keeping is impecable at its price, well within any cosc specification i have found, about a couple a seconds a day out, as good as any other decent regulated watch. You just know who to buy them from, a trusted seller with experience of any concerns, without buying them with any small nigles you might think they have, and ask they double check any small nigles that they might possibly contain that you feel is important, like for example say hand alignment with the indices etc. The watch looks far better in reality than any picture’s on google. The gold tone snxl72 model gives a a few brilliant photos account of itself on google. One of those on the way coming from marc at long island watches.

        • Pete Pete

          “…, its dial with solid perfectly applied indices markers and looks defys its price as any 5-7 grand rolex oyster / datejust at its price etc, its time keeping is impecable at its price, well within any cosc specification, …”

          I admire your passion for the snxs75. but you might want to double check whether you forgot to take your medication.

          • Ian john horwood

            Have compared the dial and case finishing with the rolex steel oyster and datejust at my local ad, and the rolex does not trounce it one bit or look better full stop.

          • You know what’s really nice, too? Invicta. Their offerings are almost as nicely finished as Lange.

            And don’t get me started on Yazole.

          • Ian john horwood

            NO they are shit

          • Guess you missed Valannin’s sarcasm.

          • Clearly you have been deceived. I suggest a visit to your local Yazole AD, loupe in hand.

          • Pete Pete

            and you have to buy yazole from a trusted authorized seller with experience of any concerns, without buying them with any small nigles you might feel they may contain, and still ask they double check any small possibly nigles/concerns that you feel is important to you, for example say hand alignment and hand alignment with the indices etc. yazoles look far better in reality than any picture’s on google.

          • My last Yazole had a whole host of nigles. A myriad nigles.

            How could I complain, though, with a 30% discount? Hard to write a check for 1/3 of a nickel, however.

          • Ian john horwood

            You never buy your watch from a back of a van do you, or a grey dealer do you, or some big or small unknown quality internet dealer do you. NO I GO AD EVERY TIME ALL THE TIME AND NEVER STRAY.

          • Pete Pete
          • Ian john horwood

            I Have a loupe dummy and have a gs sbgc003 also.

          • Pete Pete

            a loupe dummy. well no wonder you can’t see any differences …

          • Ian john horwood

            Hah funny.

          • I had a loupe dummy. Traded it in for a magnifying mannequin.

            Fewer nigles.

          • Mark1884

            Funny!

          • Ian john horwood

            Been to my local rolex ad with loupe in hand and with including my Gs sbgc003 in tow too. Sorry to say there is not perceptionally any improvement with a rolex oyster / datejust case and dial if you have a perfect seiko snxs75k1. All this perception of rolex having better polished case and better dial compared to my seiko snxs75k1 is pure bollocks, seiko naiked it perfect with this model, case and dial are perfect full stop.

          • Pete Pete

            now you’re really worrying me. is there anyone we can contact about your medication?

          • Ian john horwood

            Get your self a new pair specs.

  • Yan Fin

    I am really curious to get this 80 hours movement. Also, never owned a Hamilton, but was mildly interested to try one. And now, finally,…. No. Let’s wait till next attempt, something more cool, with matching hands, smaller case, and decent (grey market?) price.

    • egznyc

      Right – this is too big to be a dress watch – at least on my wrist.

  • Raymond Wilkie

    Jizzmaster.

    • WINKS

      Yes… with plenty of reserve power!

      • proudAmerican702

        “If your Jizzmaster lasts longer than 80 hours, consult your physician.”

  • If this were any more uninteresting, I’d need a Xanax to wake up.

    • Berndt Norten

      Wake you up
      This ain’t no Hublot
      This Hamilton is such
      A bore, yo

  • Ross Diljohn

    Tell us how you really feel.

  • SuperStrapper

    I actually think there is a bit of an opportunity with the champagne dial variant. That’s a look that can go up or down, and would make it a versatile first-or-early watch for a younger crowd. The colour clash date wheel is a buzzkill, as usual. And this case is a bit awkward. Straps are wrong, for a number of reaaons, but that is easily remedied and shouldn’t affect a buying decision.

    20% down from this MSRP should be the least expected at an AD, so for under $1k there’s nothing offensive here.

    • proudAmerican702

      +1. If there was no date window, and someone took a pencil eraser to the word “automatic” –which fouls the lower half of the dial, this would be a very nice budget dress watch.

      • Kuroji

        Yes, the font choice for “automatic” is unfortunate.

  • Berndt Norten

    Coulda been a contenda. Ruined by horrible power reserve. Orient does this too.

    • BJ314

      Completely boring and uninspiring without Power Reserve. In fact, they already make a version w/o power reserve. It’s so boring, you didn’t know it existed.

      • Berndt Norten

        Boring is the new ‘innovative.’ Boring looks good in relation to all the Hublotized monstrosities out there. So, yeah, I see your point! The Hamilton is classy and elegant and simple and…boring.

      • Mikita

        Better boring than Hublot.

  • Geert Hesselberg

    This watch with salmon colored dial would be i Think the way to go , not impressed with the champagne dial it cheapens the watch being a Hamilton, It is unfortunate -not American made.
    Happen to own a genuine Hamilton Ships chronometer , American made

  • ProJ

    Very tough sell against Seiko’s Presage.

    • Tony NW

      Seiko Cocktails have their easily scratched Hardlex, not Sapphire. Mine got scratched within two weeks. That’s simply not a problem with Sapphire.

      • Mikita

        Good luck finding a similarly priced watch as the Cocktail Time with a box shape sapphire.

      • SuperStrapper

        I’ve had mine 3 years and it’s flawless. Maybe I just don’t get it into the rotation enough.

      • Berndt Norten

        Same experience as the Strapper. I treat mine like a Patek so no scratches….yet!

        • Mikita

          I managed to scratch two of my watches with sapphire crystals – the Orient Star and B&R BR123. At the same time my Seiko with hardlex and cheap Orient with mineral look pristine.. WTF?!

  • DanW94

    Huge fan of Hamilton in general but not this particular model. Like Berndt mentions below the crudely rendered power reserve indicator ruins it. A small niggle, put the word “former” before American watch brand in the opening sentence.

  • Sheez Gagoo

    Hands look very badly executed. Besides that, not bad.

  • Lurch

    I wish they would remove the date and put the power reserve on the back of the watch.

  • Richard carroll

    3 or 4mm to big for me to consider for this type of watch. A pity because overall look is great, particularly the dial.

  • Ranchracer

    With 7.5” wrists I tend to prefer pieces in the 42mm+ size group, so I can’t believe I’m about to say this. 42mm is too big for this particular watch. In general I think dress watches look better in the 36-40mm range, this being no exception. Would have helped edge the date window out a bit closer to the indices too.

  • Svetoslav Popov

    Huge unfortunately.

  • Pete L

    Not bad and pretty good value.