While the recent developments regarding smart watches are being followed by the majority of the high tech gadget admirers, a small but effective group of products stand for the guys like me who are still not compatible with the smart watch concept. Well, the best examples of that group are Breitling Emergency and Seiko Astron.
Though Breitling Emergency and Seiko Astron are not smart watches, they still fascinate people with their abilities. Here, you may find a detailed review of Breitling Emergency II.
Let's get to my review of world first Solar GPS watch – Seiko Astron.
We had the privilege of seeing a variety of top of the line Seiko watches during our visit to Aydın Saat. Seiko Astron was one of them. The watch belongs to the 8X series with Dual Time function. Let me remind you that 8X series also includes chronographs and limited editions as well.
The presentation box features typical Japanese watch box specs mainly being simple but useful as well. In fact, I would like to see a better finished box set with a special model like the Astron. The box set contains owner manuals, guarantee card etc.
At 3 o'clock position there is an indicator showing days of the week. At 4 o'clock position we see the date window and at 6 o'clock position we notice the Dual Time sub dial.
I hear you saying “ Nothing fancy till now.. “ however, the main trick is hidden at 9 o'clock position located sub dial featuring the GPS connection and Plane Mode functions.
Irrespectively of day or night time, Astron connects with the satellites which are 20000kms away from earth and sets the time referring to the readings provided by those satellites. You may see the number of the satellites found by watching the ticks of the second hand.
Please see how that works in our video shoot below.
Bearing so many functions, the dial is designed so perfectly that you do not see any mess while you are using the watch. AR coating is very successfully applied as the sapphire crystal is invisible at almost every angle.
Thanks to the brilliant lay out of the dial, the functions can be used without problem anytime.
Astron's heart beats with the Caliber 8X53. The GPS module is located between the dial and the bezel. In case the watch can not connect with any satellite, Astron works with +/-15sn per month accuracy.
Perpetual Calendar function is set until the year 2100. Since the watch is solar powered, there is no need for a battery change.
I should say that I am little disappointed with Astron's bracelet. The clasp and the bracelet somewhat feels quite different with each other making me think that the clasp is taken from another watch. I wish Seiko did a bit better with the bracelet. In the meantime, I have to admit that my negative thoughts about the bracelet are partially about the center links being black.
Fortunately, Seiko offers a variety of versions for the Astron collection. Frankly speaking, Astron would be my choice out of the league it belongs ( if there's any..? ). Personally speaking, I would rather stay connected to the satellites and read accurate time than checking missed calls and reading emails through my watch.
Now I leave you with the video in 1080p quality.