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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi everyone.

I am about to pull the trigger on one of these two: (1) Seiko Ana-Digital World Timer Flightmaster SNJ017, or (2) Citizen Skyhawk Atomic Time Eco-Drive JY0000-53E. However, I would like some experienced feedback or advice before I do.

Basically, I am most concerned with the level of functionality of the two watches, and less concerned about some of the more well known problems, such as: (the Seiko) lack of a backlight; and (the Citizen) the large case size, the scratch-prone mineral crystal

The functionality issues are what concern me most.
For example:
- Usability of the functions (particularly displaying and changing time zones)
- Using the slide-rule bezel
- Readability of the analogue and digital displays
- The lume on the analogue hands
- Reliability of the movement modules (by the way, the Atomic Time syncing is not important for me, and usability issues will override this feature)

Of course, there may well be other issues that I am not aware of, hence this post. :)

Here are a couple of pics of the two watches concerned:

The Seiko


The Citizen


Thanks for any help... and don't hang back... even if it means suggesting alternatives to these two watches! ;-)

By the way, I have checked out the reviews of these watches on YouTube, however, these tend not to provide the kind of experienced feedback that some people here on the forum might have.

-bergspringer
 

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I own the Seiko SNJ017:




Here is the video review I made on it back in June:


See if the video answers your questions.

The digital LCD displays on the SNJ017 do not back light and the negative displays could, at times, be hard to read or be obscured by the hands. The world timer function is top notch and it even allows you to transfer alarm setting from your home time into any time zone of your choosing by the press of a button. The lume is good but not Seiko diver good.

The watch is solid and the bracelet/clasp is simply top notch with solid end links. If you wish, the bracelet can be removed and you can add an aftermarket strap.

I like it a lot. My only real caveat with it is the lack of backlighting which is a given on the Seiko H023 ana-digi movement used in this watch. The EB6 slide rule Ti bezel rotates smoothly and feels solid.

The Citizen wins in having backlight for the LCD (albeit small) displays, Radio Controlled sync and Eco-Drive solar powered movement vs standard battery powered movement as is the case of the Seiko.

Both watches are fantastic choices in my book. See which features are truly a must for you and take it from there.
 

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Also keep in mind that the Seiko SNJ017 and its dual tone counterpart, the SNJ018, have been officially discontinued by Seiko as of the end of 2008. You may still be able to source them NOS (New Old Stock) but that is becoming increasingly difficult as remaining watches are sold off. I bought mine back in April from www.dexclusive.com but they no longer carry it.

Skywatches seem to be the only internet dealer that still carries them for US$230 which is a terrific price on a watch that originally retailed for $535 and change.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Hey, great! Thanks for the responses.

The issue of a backlight (or not) is not important, but there are a couple of differences, in addition to the ones you've mentioned:

(1) the slide-rule bezel on the Citizen allows for speed/time calculations (due to the additional scale on the chapter ring on the Citizen) while the Seiko doesn't.

(2) the Citizen allows for more cities/time zones (28 for the Seiko vs. 43 for the Citizen).

(3) the Seiko appears to be more straightforward to use (with 4 button setup).

(4) the Citizen seems to have small digi panels and small analogue sub dials (I haven't seen it in the metal but they look hard to read).

Any thoughts on these...?

On the Citizen Chrono-Time AT, I'm actually looking for a Navitimer at the moment and don't need the Citizen 'look-a-like', and anyway, the price on the Flightmaster and Skyhawk are great.

Cheers,
-bergspringer
 

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Seems to me your heart is already set on the Skyhawk A-T.

As much as I love my Seiko Flightmaster, if I were buying one of these today, I would probably had gone for the Citizen instead. I really like the Eco-Drive movements quite a bit, and generally speaking, Citizen's warranty (5 years vs 3 years for Seiko) and the top notch after sales customer service is hard to beat.
 

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I own a Skyhawk AT and while it's a great piece, it has a couple of irritants. One is the date function is synchronized with your World Time city, not your local time shown on the analog hands. Secondly, the various functions are accessed by pulling out the crown and turning it. A bit of a pain.

Also, the subdials are a bit small and can be tough to read under certain conditions, particular the Zulu time dial, arguably the most important one.

But no watch is perfect and there's far more about the AT that I like than not.
 
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