Test of the Sinn U1
Published by The Watch Observer
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- the 15 photos of this watch
- the detailed rating / the Editor's opinion
- the 22 items of the Manufacturer data (including the price)
Editor's opinion = 68,5/100
Sinn is a German brand renowned for its uncompromising watches… a brand yet to be acknowledged and praised by the mass market.
Its founding principles stand at the core of this U1 watch.
Let’s review this diver’s watch… definitely made for diving!
First contact with the U1 immediately takes you to the point: we’re talking about serious business here.
Its matte grey, sandblasted look almost induces you in thinking it’s made of titanium.
You’d be mistaken for sure! It’s made of steel, and there’s no room for doubt once you’ve weighted it.
On the other hand, this is not your usual, average type of steel: Sinn uses the exact Submarine Steel used in the manufacturing of the current type 212 class U-boat submarines!
The usual marketing plan?
Not at all.
Sinn is not using this specific metal merely for aesthetic or sales-oriented reasons – like one might do with a rustled boat wreckage, for instance.
The alloy used here has peculiar properties indeed: it is antimagnetic, extremely resistant to sea water corrosion, and way harder than the classic 316L steel used by most other brands.
As for the bezel, it benefits from an additional scratch resistant surface coating, thanks to Sinn’s Tegiment technology, which makes it four times more resistant than conventional stainless steel.
Well-judged by Sinn as it’s the part most put at stake while diving!
Its oversized crown, perfectly adapted to the diver’s gripping ability, radiates pure strength and solidity.
Set at the 4th hour marker, it will not bother its owner while he bends his wrist, and shall suffer less from impact than a crown set at the 3rd hour marker.
To make it short, this Sinn definitely goes into the sturdy watch category!
A comfy Watch in spite of its size
The U1 is bulky and heavy indeed (with its 189 grams).
And yet, once on your wrist, it feels amazingly comfortable, considering its size.
This owes a lot to the case back, with its very gentle curves, and to short lugs allowing the silicone rubber strap to nicely bind the wrist. On top of that, there are no blunt angles whatsoever anywhere on the watch. Well done again!
However, its dimensions and looks do not really help in making it a real multipurpose watch – forget wearing the U1 with a suit and tie, unless you usually wear your watches over your sleeve.
Any of this wouldn’t be enough for making it a good diver’s watch, if there wasn’t one essential feature to any water-related use: readability.
And, once again, one can do nothing but admit Sinn’s work is brilliant: a deep, matte black dial efficiently contrasting with pristine white markers and broad hands.
Although the utterly minimalist design of these hands may first seem somewhat surprising, with their ‘railroad signs’ feel, they make readability just perfect, day or night.
Because even though the strong LumiNova-rendered luminosity fades rather quickly, it then remains unchanging and at a totally acceptable level of readability throughout the whole night.
A smart strap
As to the deployment buckle closing the silicone rubber strap, it is as smartly designed as it is hulking.
Actually devoid of any ruggedness, it won’t latch on by accident ⎯ and open unexpectedly.
It also incorporates a very handy and easy-to-use extension for wearing it over wetsuits.
As far as movement is concerned, Sinn has again made a safe choice by using the classic ETA 2824-2, a reliable, accurate movement.
More than enough for a diver’s watch!
So, is this Sinn U1 totally flawless?
Well, if you’re really into nitpicking, you might probably find something…
You could say the 60-click bezel makes an almost cheesy clickety-clack.
And you’d also wonder on the relevance of having a half-minute calibration and numbering on the bezel between 0 and 15 minutes… What’s the point?
But, honestly… there’s nothing unacceptable here!
With this U1, Sinn brings us a truly successfully achieved product, which goes right to the point: tough solidity, and practicality ⎯ the two essential features of a good diver’s watch.
And with all these great features offered at a reasonable price, it’s hard to imagine any water-oriented biped not wanting to own this diver’s delight.
• a genuine diver’s watch, solid and practical
• the case’s material ⎯ high tech for real
• excellent readability in any situation
• reasonable price
• not exactly a multipurpose watch
• its weight and dimensions
• journalist’s wrist = 17,5 cm
Published by The Watch Observer