About The Series: Double Time is for guys who like watches, but don’t necessarily want a big collection. What we’re going for here are two watches, at different affordable budgets, which as a team can fill just about any style need in every-day life. A casual watch and a dress watch. Those are basically the parameters.
This is the new, more svelte version of Orient’s Bambino, their flagship line of dress-watches. Compared to the original’s 41.5mm case, the new 38mm with it’s 20mm wide lugs will be more wearable for more customers. (See it side by side here with an OG 41.5mm Bambino Bauhaus-style.) Still comes with an in-house automatic movement which hacks and hand-winds. The croc-embossed leather strap seems to be a step up in terms of quality compared to the original Bambino line, with a slight taper keeping things dressy and smart. Crystal is a domed mineral, caseback is exhibition, and if this black strap/silvery-white dial isn’t your favorite combination, they have a few others (including a heritage-looking champagne with blue hands) available direct through Orient. Link above goes to Amazon since at post time the model shown is on sale. Shown above on a 7.5″ wrist, and remember that watches always appear larger than they are in flat images on the internet. So it wears a bit smaller in real life.
UPDATE: And just like that, Amazon’s pricing robots have spiked the price on the silver dial shown above to $262. So much for the deal/sale. Full price direct via Orient is $270. You can get the champagne dial/blue hands combo for $270 over there.
Full review can be found here. The 1953 is the new standard for entry-level automatic sports watches. At 40mm in diameter it’s comfortably wearable for most wrist sizes. The Seiko NH35A automatic movement hacks and hand-winds. With gilt-bordered hands, indices and script on the dial, greenish blobs of lume, and a fully brushed oyster-style bracelet, it’s a classy diver with aesthetics ripped from the wrist-watch history books. It also avoids any garish over-branding. The dial is mercifully uncluttered. There’s no silly engraving on the side of the case like its sub homage brother. There’s also no glaring polished links (inset or otherwise) on the bracelet. It doesn’t even have a date window or crown guards. The one bad bit is the bracelet’s clasp. The oyster-style bracelet is great, but the whole thing connects at a flimsy piece of metal that feels like it was ripped off a beer can. But… it works. And considering the rest of the watch and the price charged to obtain it, the thin metal on the clasp is far from a dealbreaker.
Total Cost: $400ish
Got a wristwatch duo you’d like to recommend for Double Time? Send those in to email@example.com.
Want to see the entire series? Head here for the growing archive of our Double Time posts. For those keeping track at home, this is now our second “round” of double time. First we did the hundreds ($100, $200, $300, etc…) This time we’ll be doing $150 and under, $250, $350, etc.