Product Review: slow watches
We’ve been known to venture outside our comfort zone from time to time, reviewing gadgets and headphones in addition to our usual allotment of games and films. Such is the case here as we had the opportunity to check out the “slow Jo” from slow watches.
Conceptually, slow watches has created a brand in which the dials operate off a 24-hour cycle rather than the usual 60 minutes. Its site indicates the watch is promoting a mindset that’s all about living in the moment and enjoying the time you’re spending doing whatever it is that makes you happy. It’s an interesting marketing approach, but how’s the actual watch? Let’s find out.
We reviewed the slow Jo 02 (pictured above). It arrived in simple, clean packaging, and the only piece of branding on the watch itself is on the back. The weight feels good — not too heavy, not too light — and the clasping mechanism is easy to operate and fastens securely. It never pinched our skin, which is always a plus.
Visually, the Jo 02 has a very streamlined look. The silver steel band has a nice braided design, and the all black face with a single silver hand really looks sharp. It also feels very sturdy. As we have a friend that sold watches for years we’ve owned and worn a pretty large array of timepieces, and the Jo 02 is absolutely on par with some of the nicer ones we’ve had.
There’s also a sense of flexibility that comes with it. While some watches feel too casual for certain situations, or conversely, too dressy, the Jo 02 straddles the line very effectively. We wore it to the office, out in the evening and to the park with our daughter, and it never felt out of place.
Let’s be clear, if you’re someone that needs to know the exact time and only uses their watch for that purpose, the 24-hour dial will be an issue as it only marks time in 15-minute increments. That makes it more of a fashion accessory (or even conversation piece) than a practical way to tell time — we typically checked our iPhone when we needed to know to the minute.
There is no illumination on the Jo of any kind. It’s not uncommon for a dress watch not to light up, but some of our nicer watches (like the Citizen Eco Drive) have an aspect that glows, either the face or the hands themselves, to allow you to tell time in the dark. Here you’ll need to catch some outside light source to check the time.
Although not quite a negative, the slightly raised glass on the face didn’t make fans of us. It would’ve looked even slicker had that been flush with the casing.
THIS AND THAT
Although we didn’t test it, the watch is water resistant. You can also swap out bands, which are available for purchase separately at the slow watches website. Sizing was easily done at a local jewelry store. Setting the time is handled via the usual knob on the side of the watch.
slow watches are made in Switzerland, and the Jo 02 retails for US$300 (the line starts at US$250). There are two additional lines, the slow Mo (US$250 to US$300) and the slow O (US$290 to US$320). While the Jo would be viewed as the male line and the Mo the female, all watches are ultimately considered unisex.
If you’re looking for a well-made, sharp looking watch at a reasonable price for the quality, slow watches fit the bill.