Top positive review
4 people found this helpful
Neither showy nor beautiful maintenance free watch.
on April 17, 2014
I used to wear a Seiko Coutura World Timer Watch SPL001, until the battery died, leaked and damaged the circuit board (according to the watch repair guy that inspected it). The repair guy asked me when I purchased the watch (December 2006) and told me that he didn't have a circuit board for such an old watch and that he was surprised that the watch worked for so long, since most watches in this class last around 5 years.
I really liked the World Timer and thought about purchasing another one, but the chance that it would get damaged again due to a dead battery steered me to look for a “solar” watch.
After searching and comparing watches for some time I found the SSC199 from Seiko. When it comes to looks the SPL001 wins over the SSC199. The SSC199 is a tad too plain, although it is growing on me.
I suspect that the movement and whatever else going on under the hood of the SSC199 is the same or similar to the one in the SPL001's, which is fine with me since I never had any movement issues with the SPL001.
My 8 year old SPL001 still has a pristine crystal and I expect the SSC199's crystal will be just as scratch resistant (Amazon says the SSC199 has a “glass” dial. No worries, Seiko's website says it has a sapphire cyrstal).
I hope the SSC199 will outlast my SPL001 and be trouble free for many years.
If you like the look of the SPL001 and don't mind having the battery changed every 5 years or so, you can still find it at other retailers new (currently not available on Amazon) and new and used on eBay.
I distaste gold watches, I find them too gaudy. On the other hand I wouldn’t mind wearing a Seiko SPL002, which has an appropriate amount of gold accents, unfortunately it is not a “solar” watch.
Another comparable watch is the Seiko SSC139, I just happened to see it as I was about to write this review. It looks very sporty and as one of the reviewers of it said, the glossiness of the wrist band makes it a bit too showy, especially with the intricate work on the wrist band. The wrist band on the SSC199 is shiny, but it's not “mirror shiny” like the one on the SSC139.
My sister's Seiko has the same intricate work on the wrist band and I admit that the first thing that came to my mind when I looked at the SSC139 was “women's watch”.
At the moment the SSC139 costs $27 less than the SSC199.
If you are looking for a reliable, affordable, durable, not showy, and maintenance free watch, I recommend this watch.