HANDS-ON: The Grand Seiko SBGH279 with brushed granite-grey dial is a total smokeshow

Grand Seiko SBGH279Grand Seiko’s growing reputation over the last few years has been because of three main factors — outstanding quality, mind-boggling value for money, and the most refreshingly expressive dials. As such, it’s not often one of these uniquely dialled watches flies under the radar upon release, but that’s exactly what the SBGH279 aims to do. With equal parts smoky handsomeness and restraint, Grand Seiko’s Heritage collection has received a new subtle standout. Instant amazement may not be your initial response to the SBGH279. Its dial hasn’t pioneered any new technologies, nor has it recontextualised time-honoured techniques, or reflected any natural elements. What is does have, simply, is a vertically brushed granite-grey dial, shifting in different lights to have hints of steel blue and even light mocha. The point of the watch is not to bombard you with flair, but to offer a small amount of texture and life, which sets it apart from its black or sunburst-dialled counterparts. While still being able to blend with a wide variety of attires, especially if strap-swapping is your thing, the SBGH279 manages to offer some intrigue when checking the time. Grand Seiko’s chisel-like baton indices and dauphine hands continue the theme of refined…

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