Have you ever set out to get a watch and ended up with another? Well, this is one of those i am about to share. i was looking at a 41-42mm dress sport timepiece in steel with a couple of candidates with a pretty wide ranging price point when i stumble onto something i havnt noticed before. It turns out to be the 2020 Orient Star comptemporary power reserve with date. I decided to check out the watch in flesh and really like what i saw.
At 42mm, a size many considered a sweet spot, the case was surprisingly well bi-finished in mirror and brush. Fitted with matching three row bracelet that featured solid end links and fold over clasp, it was something i wasnt expecting for its price point.
The movement was not too shoddy either, at 50hrs power reserve, and a retrograde display at 12, this was awelcomedcomplication that i prsonally always found useful. But what amazed me was the responsiveness and accuracy of the power reserve indicator, for so little money. When it said it had 50hrs, It ran for 50hrs, and some. The only other time i encountered such performance was my FPJ Chronometre Sovereign which was, cough... considerably more expensive. make that significantly. Comparing them two was so moot, but oh well.
The best part of the Orient Star comptemporary power reserve with date was it's three really gorgeous dials options. The one that i decided to get at first glance, was the steel dial. Some call it silver, some call it grey, but i like to call it steel. The satin sunburst steel dial is such an understatement and at the same time, stunning. Mirrow finished applied markers and daphane hands with centre lume catches the light to tell you its there. The power reserve indicated location is subtlely marked out on the dial with a more delicate sunburst finish. Optically there if you are looking for it and not there when you are not, if you know what i mean.
So was there anything i didnt like you ask? Well, not quite didnt like, but something i was curious about. Why did they use a black date wheel instead of white? After all, the brand name and minute tracks are already printed in white. I went back to look at the catalogue online and realized that it was indeed designed with black date wheel, so i didnt have a frankenwatch It's not a deal breaker mind you, but the 'karen' in us all has come to accept that silver dial equal white date wheel. love it or hate it, I'll leave you to be the judge of that mysterious black date wheel choice.
Orient has always been a humble watchmaker churning out affordable reliable timepieces for the masses, never quite a brand that lead the global watch trend of any sort, but that may be about to change. We shall see if steel dials will become the new blue. And by the way, the blue dial version, is stunningly gorgeous too!