Tissot T-Navigator

Astounding- surprisingly impressive or notable.

I wasn’t sure quite what to expect when I picked up the box containing my new Tissot T-Navigator. I had wanted to give Tissot a try for quite some time, but never really could quite figure out which model I truly wanted bad enough to spend the money. The T-Navigator caught my eye as it is an attractive piece with a highly impressive spec sheet that can typically be had for around $300. The only thing that really kept me from pulling the trigger was that I just wasn’t sure about how I felt about a navigational bezel. Jomashop nudged me over the edge recently though with a sale that is still running at the time I am writing this. These can be had for $199.99! That’s an outrageous price for an ETA automatic movement and sapphire crystal from a highly respected and well established brand. Best deal I’ve seen this year by quite some margin.

The first thing I noticed when I opened the box were the hands. The long T-shaped second hand is just divine, and the smooth sweep really just emphasizes it. The hour and minute hands are a little short, but didn’t really bother me. It almost emphasized the second hand even more. The dial features large Arabic numbers, and a day/date function. The lume has a nice blue tint, and is functional but not mind blowing.

The case is 44mm and it definitely wears like it. This is right in my sweet spot for size, and it has an impressive wrist presence without being obnoxious. Somehow I had missed all of the indentations on the sides of the case and the lugs when I ordered this one, but they were a very pleasant surprise. The stainless has a nice quality feel, and the sapphire crystal should look great for years to come. Tissot used an exhibition case back with a turbine pattern, and I am not a fan (pun not intended). I’ll touch on this more later.

I had initially had some reservations about the bezel, but that all seemed to disappear the more I wore the watch. I really came to appreciate having something a little different, and even more so when I learned how they are truly used. The bezel has a really nice quality feel to it. There is no play in the bezel, and it doesn’t have a cheap plastic feel to it as I had feared.

When it comes to this watch’s real party piece, it has to be the movement. Tissot sprung for the ETA 2836-2, and it’s a real treat. Smooth doesn’t even begin to describe the sweep, especially when combined with the long second hand. I could watch it for days. The movement is accurate, as expected, and has a day/date function. The one thing I have to knock Tissot on is the use of the turbine style exhibition back. The movement is arguably the main selling point of this watch and I just can’t understand why you would partially obstruct the view of it.

I do have a couple more small complaints about the T-Navigator, and by far and away the biggest complaint I have is the crown. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I struggle to grip the crown to wind it or set the time. It also does not screw down, and that is something that drives me nuts for some unknown reason. I don’t typically keep more than one or two of my watches on a winder as I typically do get such a joy from winding and setting my watches, but I dread this one. Maybe it’s just my fingers, but I really don’t like this crown.

My other complaint has to be the strap. It’s not bad, but there is just something about it that throws me off. It’s not a bad quality strap by any means it just doesn’t work for me. It is admittedly an easy problem to solve though. This watch just absolutely screams for a nato strap, and I was more than happy to oblige. The nato really just changes the whole attitude of the watch and gives it a great feel.

This is a great piece, and not just for the price. This watch oozes quality and is a bargain at $300. At $200 it’s just an astounding value.

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