Brown Dial Beauty: Sinn 556 BR Japan Only Limited Edition

Last month, I had the rare opportunity to borrow a friend’s Limited Edition Japan only watch (150 pieces). It look pretty good and I decided to show case this watch here in lieu of the usual dose of Seikos that is the mainstay of this blog.

This is a variant of the regular Sinn 556.

Sinn 556 Regular Edition

Sinn 556 Regular Edition

I understand that the 2 Limited Edition were announced in late 2010 and available shortly after for the Japan market. These were limited to 150 pieces each but share the exact same specifications as the regular edition except for 3 major differences.

1) No Date. The 2 limited edition came with no date for a cleaner look.

2) Dial color. 1 edition had a brown dial and baton markers, while the other had a cream dial with a mix of baton and Arabic numerals.

3) Bracelet option. I believe that the watch came with a leather strap only, although my friend’s watch had the bracelet. He could have bought it separately.

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 CR

Sinn 556 CR

I believe that the dial of the 556 CR is not luminous although the hands and hour markers are probably black luminous paint.

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR

I do like very much how this Sinn reminds me of a Brown Enamel Dial Brightz I used to own briefly. Brown dial watches are subtle yet not as boring as the common black dial watches. Frequently it is also hard to tell that the dial is brown unless the lighting is just right.

The brown dial edition also has an additional line of text under the Sinn logo, “FRANKFURT AM MAN” which is the full name of the city where Sinn is founded,

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR - Powered by the reliable ETA 2824

Sinn 556 BR – Powered by the reliable ETA 2824

Similar to the regular edition, this edition is powered by the ETA 2824 completed with a gilded signed rotor. Curiously enough, although this limited edition did away with the date window, it is still possible to feel the “adjustment” of the date at the first position of the crown, while the time can only be changed at the second position.

Sinn 556 BR

Sinn 556 BR

The words “Made in Germany” is printed just above the 6 o’çlock marker. Here you can also see the luminous baton markers.

Sinn 556 BR - Lume shot

Sinn 556 BR – Lume shot

Sinn 556 BR - Lume shot

Sinn 556 BR – Lume shot

As mentioned, the hands and hour markers are fully luminous, although they cannot be compared to the lume of the Seiko divers.

Overall, this was a very functional looking dress watch that is well priced at the time of its release, approximately USD 2000. It certainly is in line with German design aesthetics having a very clean and utilitarian look.

However, I do find Sinn somewhat lacking in the value proposition (but there are NUMEROUS other brands that offer even less value than Sinn does at a much higher price bracket). The case finishing is functional, but I do not find it “interesting” as the same uniform brushed finishing is used throughout the case. The movement is also off the shelf without any form of enhancement saved for the gilded rotor. As I mentioned above, even though the date window had been eliminated the user can still “change” the date at the first pull of the crown. Surely, it cannot be too difficult to eliminate this feature entirely than to simply use the same movement as the regular edition that comes with date?

References 

http://www.sinn-japan.jp/556-2.html

http://www.horologycrazy.com/2010/12/sinn-japanese-limited-edition-watches.html

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