People frequently ask me what is up with SevenFriday watches. Either they wish to understand the aBlogtoWatch opinion on specific SevenFriday watch versions, or only need to understand my thoughts on the distinctively set Swiss watch brand general, that provides large, distinctively designed mechanical timepieces at a cost. SevenFriday has been so popular that in just a couple of years it has created its own sector. New manufacturers are popping up that seem to be emulating their victory, and some existing brands are offering new versions aimed at directly competing with SevenFriday’s core collection of “P series” watches, including the P1, P2, and P3 watches (and their variations). For this guide, aBlogtoWatch not just provides another hands-on review of the SevenFriday watch, but also discusses how the market SevenFriday occurred to create from the Swiss watch world.SevenFriday now has two major kinds of watches which include the P set along with the new-for-2014 M set (read on SevenFriday M1 and M2 watches here). Each of them comprises Japanese Miyota automatic mechanical motions. The SevenFriday brand isalso, nevertheless, based in Zurich and has been founded by a watch industry veteran. The irony, of course, is that even though the brand is technically Swiss, the watches can’t be called “Swiss Made” because they feature Japanese mechanical movements. What was the goal of the brand from the outset? ABlogtoWatch first reviewed SevenFriday watches hands here.
SevenFriday’s latest collection is the S-Series, and it was announced at Baselworld earlier this year. The first S-Series watch is called the S1/01 and it features a square case that resembles that of SevenFriday’s first watch collection, the P-Series (reviewed here). More importantly, the S-Series is arguably SevenFriday’s most legible watch yet, featuring conventional hour and minute hands that are thicker and coated with luminescent material. Following up on the S1/01, SevenFriday threw us a sequential curve-ball with the S3/01 watch. Now, the SevenFriday S2/01 finally fills that gap. It features similar design cues to its S-brethren, each inspired by a different “industrial” theme, but each with its own design and completely different overall aesthetic.
SevenFriday’s S-Series pays homage to the industrial designs of earlier SevenFriday watches, and follows similar design themes. The S1/01 is said to have been inspired by clean industries and recycling. It features a translucent nylon surround that even has the recognizable recycling logo molded into it. The S3/01 is in a PVD black case that incorporates a crown guard, and it is all about “industrial engines.” The SevenFriday S2/01, on the other hand, is inspired by the Industrial Revolution and features a rawer and more steampunk look and feel. The S2/01 is decidedly the most vintage-looking of the bunch.
Like the other S-Series watches, the new SevenFriday S2/01 features a 47mm wide case, and here it is in polished stainless steel. It also has an “animation ring” (what SevenFriday calls the ring that surrounds the case) made out of sandblasted PVD antique brass. The antique brass animation ring complements the dial well because the dial has elements that give it a raw industrial look.
Let’s begin with the hour hand which has an antique brass color and the minute hand which has a rhodium color. They are also painted with Super-LumiNova to provide legibility in the dark. Under hardened anti-reflective mineral glass, the partially skeletonized metallic dial also has prominent Côtes de Genève markings and a polished rhodium SevenFriday plate. There are also exposed screws throughout the dial.
Adding to the entire industrial look is an opaline dial ring with black minute track markings, along with the seconds display which is indicated using three sandblasted rhodium arrows of varying length and three concentric seconds tracks. Finally, completing the look is the exposed balance wheel at 7 o’clock, which is like the beating heart of the machine. The SevenFriday S2/01 also comes with a vintage-looking padded black leather strap.
Like most other SevenFriday watches, the SevenFriday S2/01 is powered by a Miyota movement, specifically the 82S5. There’s nothing fancy about the 82S5, but it ticks all the boxes insofar as practicality and usability are concerned. It beats at 3Hz and offers a power reserve of 40 hours. It doesn’t hack, but it can be hand-wound, which is useful since this means you can easily set the watch the night before and wind it so that it still has enough power to run in the morning.
The new S2/01 continues SevenFriday’s strong tradition of offering aesthetically interesting watches at a competitive price. The SevenFriday S2/01 has an interesting look, and I’m particularly fond of its running seconds display, which shows a lot of attention to detail. My only complaint is that the watch only has a water-resistance rating of 30m, which would make me a bit nervous about choosing it as an everyday-wear option. The SevenFriday S2/01 is priced at $1,250. sevenfriday.com