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on February 10, 2012
I bought mine on Feb 8, 2012, sold by A2ZWatches, fulfilled by Amazon. I did a ton of research into Seiko 5s, and specifically this watch. I liked the SNK809, but the size seemed small, so I went with the SNZG15. On my 7.5" wrist, next to my awfully large paws, this watch appears just about right; stylishly on the large size, but not by any means massive.

If you look closely at the picture in the Amazon listing as I did, between the 8 and 7, and between the 7 and the 6, there is white text that should read "MADE IN" and "JAPAN" respectively. The watch I received does not have this. Between the 7 and the 6 it reads "7S36-" (the caliber) because it is not made in Japan, but rather Malaysia. It's also labeled as such on the Hardlex backing. This was a little disappointing to me, and I almost returned it. But ultimately decided it wasn't worth the hassle. I like the watch, and am fully satisfied with it's authenticity and quality.

It arrived in the expected blue Seiko box (with white protective cardboard sleeve), mounted on the white Seiko pillow, with retail string tag attached, along with the Seiko ZSxx instructions, registration card, and warranty/instructions booklet with "certificate of limited warranty," which was not "filled out by the Seiko authorized dealer."

I wound the watch according to the instructions at about 15:00 local time, and set the time (about -3 seconds to the atomic clock). Before bed at about 23:00 local, I removed the watch and I noted it had held at about -3 seconds to the atomic clock. The next morning at about 9:00 local, I observed that the watch was about +15 seconds to the atomic clock (a net gain of 18 seconds). After wearing the watch all day, I'm now observing about +16 seconds to the atomic clock (a net gain of 1 second throughout the day). I'll be keeping track of it against the atomic clock, and may report back. So far, this is very much within my needed time keeping tolerances, and for an automatic, I'm satisfied.

The Lumibrite hands charge up quickly, and dissipate at a rate on par with most glow-in-the-dark items I've seen. It's nothing special, but it's also not radioactive like tritium, which is a plus to me.

The strap is comfortable but austere. There's vinyl reinforcing the strap holes. But I didn't, and don't think you're about to, buy this watch for it's band. I've got 2 other straps, a Bond Zulu and a stitched composite band (black with with red stitching) on their way, which I suspect will really make this time piece pop on my wrist.

Looks fantastic
Genuine Seiko
Size great (for bigger mitts like mine)
Great price for an automatic with some provenance
Fantastic "my-first-automatic"

Wish it had been made in Japan as pictured

A month and a half later, I would like to add a few things that I thought you the reader might find helpful. The time keeping has been very good; very close to what I've reported above. It's a weekend watch for me, and after a 2 day weekend of wearing it roughly 16 hours per day, the automatic movement will run about a day and a half. Lastly, the Amazon listing when I purchased it (and at the time of this update) states the band width to be 20mm, but this is not true. It's 22mm. The bands I bought looked a little small, and my calipers confirmed it; bandwidth is 22mm. Fantastic watch overall. I would buy again, and would recommend to a friend.
66 comments143 of 147 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 18, 2012
Bought this seiko G15 after having tried it in a shop somewhere in San Francisco Chinatown. Decided to buy it on amazon because it was much much cheaper. Unfortunately, amazon`s description of the watch is pretty useless (at the time of purchase it didnt even mention it was an automatic, and even mentionned that the seiko had a battery!!!). Since then, it has been corrected...)
Long story short, i'll try to describe the watch better here:

The watch has an automatic seiko movement (SNZG15 uses the 23 jewel seiko 7S36 movement) and the watch is 42mm in diameter (but it feels like a big 40mm or a small 42mm seeing the flieger/military type dial is well designed). It's lug size is 22mm, giving it a hefty look and feel, but rest assured, having relatively average/small wrists, it sits well on the wrist and doesnt look too big at all. It's water resistant to 100 meters. That means you should be able to swim with it, but I would not recommend diving with it (go check out the real diving seikos that are WR to 200 should your goal be diving). I knocked off a star in the rating because the watch does not have a screw in crown. I know its not advertised as a real divers, but a screw in crown would've allowed more security while swimming with it. However, 100m should be enough anyways for most people's usage).

The dial has the 12 hour markings on the outside, while european 24 hours type (13 to 24) are right under them, giving it more of a military/flieger look and use. The glass is hardlex crystal (harder to scratch).

The cloth strap feels a little tougher than a regular nato. It will however be necessary to replace it after a year or so seing the amount of wear it has taken in 2 months of regular wearing.

The lume is really bright, but i'm not sure the second hand has any, or it is very thinly applied.
The day and date are present, which is a big plus. It is not instadate, so the day and date turn slowly around midnight to change. The day of the week is both in english and spanish, but once you set it, it will only display the language you chose, so the other language will only turn around midnight and you will only see it then)

If you were hesitating between the SNZG15 and the SNK809, please note that these are two similar watches while you compare them online and with pictures, but they are actually very different when trying them on (809 is very light, much smaller, different WR rating as it is 30m).

Overall, I am really satisfied with my purchase. For connaisseurs, or people who love to buy japanese seikos, you should already know that the SNZG15 on sale on amazon is NOT from Japan, but is made in Malaysia, as is the movement as the reference number should tell you, J for japan, K basically being not japan). Even if I wouldve prefered the japanese model, it comes at a much higher price. I am really delighted with the build quality of the malaysian watch, and the movement only gains 1 or 2 seconds max per day. Not too sure about the warranty though, but the watch came with a nice seiko box and all the paperwork).

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on June 1, 2014
This was my first automatic watch. I wanted something a little more sophisticated than my Timex Easy Reader while still saving money for a much nicer watch (Nomos). The watch feels very nice, a definite upgrade in every category possible. Basically a poor man's Hamilton Khaki.

One thing I highly recommend is getting a new strap as soon as you get it. The strap that it comes with is not the greatest.
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on November 14, 2012
I've wanted an automatic watch for daily wear for some time now. I wanted one that was reasonably accurate so I don't have to re-set it all the time. However the general rule has been that cheap ones are never accurate and accurate ones are never cheap. This watch seems to be an exception. It's self winding, which is a plus and is plenty accurate for my needs.

It's a classic looking watch. Nothing flashy or gimmicky which I prefer. It's great for daily wear with the super comfortable nylon strap. The size of the watch is about perfect on my wrist which measures 7.25". I use the 6th out of 10 holes on the strap. The hands & hour markers glow in the dark. The glow is quite strong if you were in sunlight all day. If you hold it near your ear, you can hear the watch ticking. I have a Malaysian movement watch.

This watch is a great value. It keeps time as well as an ordinary quartz watch, but never needs batteries or even winding, just wear it. It's stylish and comfortable enough for daily wear. Definitely keeps time better than automatic watches from designer brands that cost up to 3x as more. I never understood why people buy watches made by companies that specialize in designing clothing. Buy a watch from a proper watch maker, not a generic manufacturer white labeled watch!
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on December 23, 2012
This Seiko has quickly become my favorite of my collection, it's a fine piece if you're looking for your first automatic or a fine everyday wear watch.

This is my first automatic so I can't compare it to other autos, but in my experience this piece is fairly accurate (I didn't do any synthetic test though) and will last about a day without being worn.

face design
easily read chapter ring
the signature Seiko smooth sweep second hand
superb build quality and fit/finish
luminosity recharges quickly & lasts slightly above what I consider average
relatively quite rotor movement (you must be in a very quite room to hear the weight spin)

lens isn't as hard as Seiko claims (it scratched in the first week, my Citizen's have fair much better)
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on May 30, 2012
This watch was purchased to primarily wear on the weekend but I find myself wearing it to work a few days a week. The main selling points for me were its classic face design, automatic movement, brand (of course I could find a Rolex I like, but I work for a living), and reviewer comments from people who sounded like they know what they are talking about. I would say I am a watch guy, but not quite as into watches as other people so go read those reviews for the technical stuff. It is a good looking watch from a reliable company and best of all it is an automatic which means it has a cool sweeping hand that glows in the dark too!

Other reviewers have commented that their watches are made in Malaysia, my watch does have "Made in Japan" between the 8, 7, 6 numbers on the face and on the back.
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on February 16, 2012
Was really very pleasently surprised when I received my new watch. The photo on Amazon really doesn't do this watch justice. The watch has some heft to it and feels fairly substantial on my wrist. The simple black face is beautiful and its very easy to spot the time even with a quick glance at your wrist. Was a little suspect of the "hardilex" face going into the purchase - its definitely not sapphire but it isn't a cheap plastic either as one would find on lower end watches. My only complaint (hardly one given the inexpensive price) is the relatively poor quality of the canvas band. A problem easily fixed at any local mall. Went into this purchase looking for an everyday "beater" watch. Ended up with that and a bit more at a very reasonable price point. Good job Seiko.
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on October 11, 2013
Then this is your watch. I've been after a very specific watch the last couple of years: automatic movement, well crafted, 42MM case diameter, day/date with a rugged build and a simple, non-chronometer face. Most of the watches that catch my eye carry the name IWC, Hamilton, Damasko, Sinn or Fortis. I am not willing to pay that kind of money just for the brand or the swiss/german "craftsmanship". I am not a label snob, per se, and look mainly for high quality and value. This Seiko hits the mark and then nails it. I cannot be more pleased with my purchase. The timekeeping is superb as long as you wear it daily and the fit and finish are first rate. It looks great on my wrist, and i catch myself staring at it often during the day. So far, it's proven to be bump and scratch proof. The only modification I made was swapping out the OEM band for a NATO version. I could not be happier. This is a fabulous watch, and will satisfy all but the most discriminating watch buyer. Yes, I'd love an IWC, but this satisfies 95% of what I want from an IWC for 1% of the cost. One percent. I am thrilled with this purchase. Highly recommended.
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on January 23, 2015
I've had this watch for a week now. I read a lot of reviews about it before purchasing it and they were mostly all positive and I have to say that it has not disappointed.
Even just taking it out of the package you can tell that it's a very well-made timepiece. A very well-made automatic no less, and an incredible value at this price. It tells the day and date which in much finer watches can be and extremely expensive feature. It has a really nice size and weight. I have heard of problems with the mechanism but mine works perfectly thus far. I originally got it because I wanted a nice military style watch which this watch fufilled quite nicely especially with the blackface and black nylon/canvas style straps.
But I've come to see that the watch itself is actually extremely versatile. I went ahead and bought another pair of nylon canvas style army green straps for less than $10. I have also been able to buy nice thick brown leather straps for under $30 which when put on turns this from a workhouse watch into a much dressier watch. Removing and putting on the straps is quite simple. You can get a spring bar removal tool for less than $5 online and I've become quite proficient at it in the span of a few days. For reference if you do decide to get other straps you will want to look for 22 mm. I would recommend this watch to any guy looking for a great quality automatic at an amazing price(or girl looking for a masculine watch). And I will probably be buying it as a gift in the future.
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on January 9, 2015
I recently got this watch after seeing many reviews and recommendations of it online, and I must say that it really is great. Its simple, no-nonsense design is very easy to read, while the price point of around $100 represents an excellent value for an automatic watch. The main reason I wanted this Seiko was so it could serve as a beater watch when I was working either around the house or on the car; times that I normally felt uncomfortable wearing my nicer Tag Heuer. That's not to say that the Tag Heuer isn't a reliable watch that can't take a beating. To the contrary, after 13 years of daily wear it still looks fantastic. Still, I want to keep it that way, so the Tag will become the watch I wear to the office and such, while this Seiko will be the workhorse that will stand ready to take the abuse. So far I've flushed a water heater and performed an oil change with the Seiko and it has served me well without a single scratch yet. Quite a good start I would say.

What I like most about this Seiko is how easy it is to read. Too many watches require you to really study the dial if you want to be more precise than "It's ALMOST 2:45." I'm someone who has 20/20 vision, so a truly functional watch should be one that allows me to quickly read the time and confidently say "It's 2:43," without requiring a magnifying glass to see the minute marks. Thankfully, with the SNZG15 fits the bill. The hands are easy to find at a glance, and their shape makes them effective pointers. The only downside in this area is that, given its design, the minute hand does not extend all the way out to the minute marks. However, I've not found that to be a problem due to the fact that the minute hand and markings stand out clearly.

During the Christmas break this watch also saw it's fair share of movie time, and the lume has proven itself to be quite capable of telling the time throughout the film. This isn't one of those watches, like LumiNox, that's going to light your path to the bathroom in the middle of the night or anything, but when you need to know the time in the dark the Seiko stands ready. Many times I've looked at the watch on my nightstand after being in the dark more than 8 hours and still been able to tell the time.

My only complaint is that the nylon strap is already starting to fray after only a couple weeks of wear. I suspect this is because not only is the strap nylon, but so are the loops that you tuck the extra length into. These are constructed by fusing the ends of the nylon together, which results in an edge sharp enough to dig into the main body of the strap as the loop slides across it. I really can't see this strap lasting longer than a year or so, possibly much less depending on circumstances. However, this isn't much of an issue to me since I had already planned to replace the strap with a decent quality rubber one. This watch is also available with a steel bracelet.

So there you have it. Even though it's only been a couple of weeks, I'm quite happy with this watch. The only caveat is that you should plan to replace the strap right away or spend the extra money for the steel bracelet. Given Seiko's reputation of building watches which are meant to last, I'm sure this one will be serving me for many years to come.
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