Introducing: The Grand Seiko SBGX355 “Snowflake Quartz”
Quartz is having something of a quiet comeback. After decades of scorn and contempt, many have come to appreciate the ease of use that quartz provides. Furthermore, not all quartz watches are the same. Today’s new Grand Seiko SBGX355, already nicknamed “Snowflake Quartz,” uses the brand’s famed 9F62 movement and comes in a highly wearable case. I’ll go ahead and call this one right now — this watch will be a big hit.
The Grand Seiko Snowflake SBGA211 is arguably the brand’s modern-day classic. When most folks think of Grand Seiko, this is the watch that comes to mind. The Spring Drive-powered model with its textured dial first saw light back in 2005, and it’s still incredibly popular. Today’s new Snowflake Quartz brings the same dial traits but in a much simpler execution and smaller size. If a finely crafted battery-powered watch is up your alley, the new SBGX355 just might be the watch you’ve been awaiting.
The Grand Seiko Snowflake Quartz SBGX355
The new Snowflake Quartz SBGX355 fits within the Grand Seiko Heritage Collection. At its core, this is a 37mm by 44.6mm piece made of high-intensity titanium. It comes solely on Grand Seiko’s standard bracelet with three rows of brushed links, two rows of polished intermediate links, and a push-button clasp. A curved sapphire crystal comes together with a solid, screw-in case back and achieves a thickness of 10.6mm. Water resistance to 10 bar will also likely satisfy most buyers.
Most importantly, the new Snowflake Quartz contains its trademark dial with the windswept snowy texture. Setting this off is a black minute track, polished and applied indexes, and equally polished dauphine hands. The blued seconds hand provides a gentle dose of contrast that most fans should appreciate, and a no-nonsense date window with a polished frame sits at 3 o’clock. As far as the case, Grand Seiko chose a shiny and angled bezel against a case with matte-finished lugs and polished chamfers. Drilled lug holes allow access to the 19mm-wide end links. Overall, the look is in keeping with classic Grand Seiko models.
Powered by the 9F62 movement
If ever there were a quartz movement sitting on some mythical throne of a battery-powered kingdom, the 9F62 would likely wear the crown. The SBGX355 uses this object of desire, and that should truly please folks. Seriously, the number of times I’ve heard various watch lovers mention this movement in conjunction with some sort of fantasy watch boggles my mind. The rationale is fairly simple, though. This is a beautifully crafted powerplant with nine jewels, and it can be regulated. Plus, the accuracy is insane at just ±10 seconds per year! It also has a backlash auto-adjust mechanism. This ensures that the seconds hand lands exactly on each marker. Best of all, and like all quartz watches, it has that “grab and go” characteristic that more people seem to enjoy today.
An additional ladies’ model
Additionally, Grand Seiko has released a ladies’ Snowflake Quartz model. The STGF385 is a 28.9mm stainless steel model using the 4J52 quartz movement. It contains a bezel with 44 diamonds and will sell for €6,000 or £5,280. More information can be found on the official Grand Seiko site.
Final thoughts and availability
The new Grand Seiko SBGX355 “Snowflake Quartz” is available now for €4,200 / £3,700 at all Grand Seiko retailers worldwide. It should answer longstanding requests from fans and prospective buyers for more quartz options. The fact that it comes with one of the most popular dial styles from Grand Seiko is all for the better. As I said in the beginning, if this isn’t popular, then perhaps all of the outspoken quartz lovers are just bluffing! If you’re a lover of high-end quartz, does this watch answer the call for you?
Visit the official Grand Seiko site for more details on the new Snowflake Quartz.