Jack Masonis a Texas-based watch brand from the mind of Peter Cho. The brand mixes an American sense of offering value-for-money, nostalgic style, and watch enthusiast sensibility when it comes to designs and product features. One of its bestselling watches is the Strat-O-Timer GMT. Available in a few cosmetic styles all focused on a GMT theme, the Strat-O-Timer was one of the first watches to use the celebrated Japanese-made Miyota caliber 9075 GMT automatic movement. Why does that matter? If you are into GMT-style watches then you know that not all two-time-zone movements operate the same way. Even movements that have a 24-hour GMT hand can operate differently. The principal difference is often what the users adjust independently — the local time or the home time. Equipped with the caliber 9075 automatic movement, the Jack Mason Strat-O-Timer GMT is an affordable modern GMT watch that allows you to adjust the local time independently.

What difference does this make in practice? It’s related to how you want to use a second time zone watch. If you are someone who remains “at home” and wants to easily adjust the second time zone, then a movement like the Swiss Made ETA 2893 (and most other legacy GMT movements) will work well for you. With that said, enthusiasts don’t consider those “traveler” GMT watches since the local time is what you want to adjust easily, not the home (reference) 24-hour time. To enjoy that “traveler GMT watch” functionality, until recently consumers had to spend a lot more money and get something from Rolex or Omega. Now with movements like the Miyota 9075 automatic available, the world of traveler GMT watches opens up, and Jack Mason was an early passenger aboard this new train.

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With a nostalgic, vintage sports watch style, the 40mm Strat-O-Timer GMT case is tonneau-shaped with a round dial, and produced in stainless steel. The case is 13mm thick, but feels thinner given that about 2mm of that is the box-style sapphire crystal. It has a modest 47mm lug-to-lug distance. That equates to a very comfortable wearing experience for most wrists. The case is water resistant to 200 meters, and it has a higher-end feature not found in many watches at this price point – a sapphire crystal overlay on top of the rotating GMT-style bezel. Even though this is a modern timepiece, the Jack Mason brand did an excellent job of giving it a vintage feel in both how it wears and what it looks like. This particular version of the Jack Mason Strat-O-Timer GMT is the “Espresso,” given the particular brown-on-brown colors of the bezel. Jack Mason currently produced four versions of the Strat-O-Timer GMT including the red and blue bezel “Americana,” the black and blue “Dark Night,” the green “Magnolia,” and this mixed brown “Espresso” version. All of the colors in one way or another are suggestive of a popular Rolex GMT-Master II or Submariner timepiece model.


Jack Mason includes both a comfortable seven-link steel bracelet (or a three-link version) as well as a rubber strap. I found the strap to be comfortable, although the strap end is a bit large, and Jack Mason claimed that this part would be refined in due course. It is interesting that two bracelet options are available, which might be confusing for some customers, but it does allow people to choose a style they like better.

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Inside the Strat-O-Timer GMT watches, as I said, is the Miyota Cal. 9075 automatic movement. The movement is visible through the sapphire crystal window on the rear of the case and operates at 4Hz with 42 hours of power reserve. Here it offers the time, date window, and 24-hour hand. When you “quick adjust” the local time, the hour hand moves forward or backward in one-hour increments. The idea is to allow travelers an easy way of adjusting between time zones for the local time as they travel.

While it has some quirks, the Jack Mason Strat-O-Timer GMT is a very competent watch for the money and has a friendly, approachable style that I think many people will enjoy. The concept is meant to be “familiar” to watch enthusiasts, but the small touches allow Jack Mason to distinguish itself and allow its Texas and Americana roots to have a place, as well. Note the “Lone Star” style brand logo and the discreet red, white, and blue colors that paint the counterweight on the seconds hand. Price for the Jack Mason Strat-O-Timer GMT Espresso watch is $999 USD. Learn more at the Jack Mason watches website.

Necessary Data
>Brand: Jack Mason
>Model: Strat-O-Timer GMT Espresso
>Price: $999 USD
>Size: 40mm wide, 13mm thick (with crystal), 47mm long lug-to-lug distance
>When reviewer would personally wear it: As nicely made albeit affordable travel watch when sport and style are needed during your explorations.
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Budget-minded watch enthusiasts looking for a “real” travelers GMT watch with an approachable style and brand that are niche but not at all weird.
>Best characteristic of watch: Good overall design and use of high-end components and features. Very much feels like a more expensive watch than it is.
>Worst characteristic of watch: Strap ends are a bit large. Hours markers feel a bit chubby when compared to the thickness of the hands, but it doesn’t affect legibility.

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