San Martin Watches: Origin, Review, and Opinions

San Martin SN0007

San Martin watches are renowned for their quality craftsmanship, thanks to the incorporation of premium components that elevate their status in the mid-range market.

Scratch-resistant sapphire crystals, 316L stainless steel cases, and ceramic bezels are just a few examples of how this brand defies expectations, offering durability and luxury at accessible prices.

They certainly stand head and shoulders above other Chinese watch brands, but this commitment to high-quality materials also drives up the price and raises a critical question: Are they truly worth the cost?

Next, we’ll delve deep into the features and performance of San Martin watches to determine if their value justifies the investment.

⌦ Origin of San Martin Watches

The origins of San Martin in the watchmaking world begin with the vision of its founder, Liao Jia Ming, who in 2016 decided to bring his passion for watches to life in Zhongshan, Guangdong Province, China.

Starting with a small team of just three people, Liao Jia Ming was no stranger to the watchmaking realm. Since 2002, the company had been involved in the art of customizing Seiko watches, which provided them with a solid foundation and deep industry knowledge.

The move to Dongguan in 2017 marked a turning point for the brand, immersing it in an ecosystem rich in innovation and collaboration. This strategic move allowed San Martin to refine its craftsmanship and forge significant partnerships, such as its collaboration with Chongqing University and its Watch Design Institute.

This period of expansion culminated in the acquisition of multiple patents, both design and technical, signaling their unwavering commitment to innovation and quality.

Thus, from its humble beginnings to becoming a respected name in mid-range watchmaking, San Martin has charted a path characterized by respect for watchmaking tradition while driving evolution with each piece it creates.

⌦ What quality does this brand offer?

San Martin watches have gained recognition in the mid-range market, not only for their inspired designs but also for the superior quality of their components.

This detailed analysis of the key elements of their watches seeks to provide a clear insight into what this brand has to offer.

➜ Case

San Martin watch cases are primarily crafted from 316L stainless steel, known for its superior resistance to wear and corrosion.

This material is a standard in the high-end watch industry for its durability and ability to maintain an excellent quality polished or brushed finish over time.

Some specific models incorporate Damascus finishes, elevating the level of sophistication and offering a distinctive touch that stands out in the market.

➜ Crystal

Scratch-resistant sapphire crystal is another premium component San Martin chooses for most of its models, a detail also found in brands like Addiesdive.

This material is nearly as hard as diamond, ensuring lasting clarity and protection against all kinds of everyday wear.

The inclusion of anti-reflective coating on many of their crystals further enhances readability under various lighting conditions, a critical detail for watch enthusiasts.

➜ Bracelet

Regarding bracelets, San Martin spares no expense in quality. Stainless steel bracelets offer exceptional strength and comfort, with solid, well-assembled links promising longevity comparable to luxury brands.

For those who prefer a non-metal alternative, San Martin also provides options in leather and nylon, maintaining the high standard of quality with robust and flexible materials that comfortably adapt to daily wear.

➜ Crown

The crown, often screw-down to ensure greater water resistance, is a detail that San Martin has perfected to combine functionality with aesthetics.

Its design ensures comfortable and precise manipulation, allowing effortless adjustments and reinforcing the watch’s waterproofing, a vital aspect for models intended for water activities or demanding environments.

➜ Movements

San Martin demonstrates its commitment to quality and precision through the selection of mechanical and quartz movements used in its watches, opting for calibers from renowned Swiss, Japanese, and other globally reputed firms.

  • NH35: Manufactured by Seiko, this Japanese automatic movement is known for its robustness and reliability, offering a power reserve of 41 hours. Its popularity among watch enthusiasts is due to its accuracy and easy maintenance.
  • Sellita SW200: A Swiss automatic movement that has earned trust for its efficiency and precision. Comparable to the ETA 2824-2, the SW200 is a frequent choice for mid to high-end watches, offering 38 hours of power reserve and excellent reliability.

Additionally, San Martin uses other notable movements in their collections:

  • PT5000: This is a Chinese automatic movement, considered equivalent to the ETA 2824. It offers comparable accuracy and has been well-received in the watch community for its reliability and value it brings to the watches it powers.
  • Miyota 9015: Manufactured by Japanese company Citizen, this automatic movement is appreciated for its high frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour, resulting in smoother second-hand movement. Additionally, it offers a power reserve of 42 hours and is known for its durability.
  • Swiss Ronda 6004 and 715: For quartz models, San Martin chooses movements from Ronda, a respected Swiss company known for its precision and reliability. These quartz movements are ideal for those seeking maintenance-free accuracy and further showcase San Martin’s diverse offering.
  • Orient YN55: This is another Japanese automatic movement used by San Martin in some of its models. Produced by Orient, it is known for its reliability and offers a solid power reserve, making it a popular choice for affordable automatic watches.

In summary, San Martin distinguishes itself not only by the aesthetics of its watches but also by the intrinsic quality of each of its components.

From the sturdy cases and sapphire crystals to the comfortable bracelets and precise movements, every detail is a testament to the brand’s commitment to excellence.

This attention to detail ensures that each San Martin watch is not only an object of desire for its appearance but also an investment in durability and functionality.

⌦ Review of San Martin’s Most Successful Watches

➜ San Martin SN0054 GMT

The San Martin SN0054 GMT stands out for its functionality and elegance. Equipped with a sapphire crystal and a reliable Japanese automatic movement, the Seiko NH34, this watch offers precision and durability.

The 39mm case with a thickness of 12.8mm, crafted from 316L stainless steel, promises both resilience and style. With a water resistance of 10 bar (100 meters), it also features a practical GMT function for travelers and hands with BGW-9 lume for visibility in the dark.

Crystal Sapphire
Movement Japanese Automatic
Caliber Seiko NH34
Case Diameter 39 mm
Case Thickness 12.8 mm
Materials 316L Stainless Steel
Water Resistance 10 bar (100 meters)
Other Features GMT function, hands and markers with BGW-9 super luminous

➜ San Martin SN0007 62MAS

The San Martin SN0007 62MAS is a tribute to tradition and innovation. With its sapphire crystal and 316L stainless steel case of 39mm, this automatic watch with Seiko NH35A caliber promises not only durability but also horological precision.

Designed to withstand depths of up to 200 meters underwater, its rotating ceramic bezel and super luminous SLN C3 lume attest to its ability to excel both in functionality and underwater aesthetics.

Crystal Sapphire
Movement Japanese Automatic
Caliber Seiko NH35A
Case Diameter 39 mm
Case Thickness 13 mm
Materials 316L Stainless Steel
Water Resistance 20 bar (200 meters)
Other Features Rotating ceramic bezel, lume SLN C3 super luminous

➜ San Martin SN052 Panda

The San Martin SN052 Panda is a timepiece that captures the essence of sporty elegance with its distinctive design and practical functionality.

Protected by a sapphire crystal, this model features a Seagull ST1901 quartz caliber, known for its precision and reliability.

With a 40mm case in 316L stainless steel and water resistance of 100 meters, it is as robust as it is refined. The chronograph with tachymeter scale and BGW-9 super luminous lume enhance its functional character and legibility in various lighting conditions.

Crystal Sapphire
Movement Quartz
Caliber Seagull ST1901
Case Diameter 40 mm
Case Thickness 14 mm
Materials 316L Stainless Steel
Water Resistance 100 bar (100 meters)
Other Features Chronograph with tachymeter scale, BGW-9 super luminous lume

➜ San Martin SN0017 Submariner

The San Martin watch, with its iconic aesthetics and robust construction, reflects the mastery of modern watchmaking.

Under the sapphire crystal resides a reliable Japanese Seiko NH35A automatic movement, housed within a 40mm 316L stainless steel case.

Its water resistance of up to 200 meters and a 120-click ceramic rotating bezel highlight its functionality for diving.

The date magnifier and the super luminous BGW-9 lume ensure clarity and readability underwater, making it a privileged choice for sea enthusiasts.

Crystal Sapphire
Movement Japanese Automatic
Caliber Seiko NH35A
Case Diameter 40 mm
Case Thickness 12.7 mm
Materials 316L Stainless Steel
Water Resistance 20 bar (200 meters)
Other Features 120-click ceramic rotating bezel, date magnifier, super luminous BGW-9 lume

➜ San Martin SN0105 Flieger

The San Martin SN0105 Flieger is a tribute to classic watchmaking with a modern twist. With its sturdy Hardlex crystal and an elegant 36mm 316L stainless steel case, this watch also packs plenty of style.

Moreover, the Seiko VH31 Mechaquartz caliber brings quartz precision with the feel of a mechanical movement. It withstands depths of up to 100 meters and shines with SLN C3 and BGW-9 lume, ensuring visibility on any adventure.

Crystal Hardlex
Movement Japanese Quartz
Caliber Seiko VH31 Mechaquartz
Case Diameter 36 mm
Case Thickness 10.5 mm
Materials 316L Stainless Steel
Water Resistance 10 bar (100 meters)
Other Features Quartz movement with mechanical sweep, super luminous SLN C3 green + BGW-9 blue lume

⌦ Opinions and conclusions

Opinions on San Martin watches are overwhelmingly positive, highlighting their excellent value for money, durability and resilience of materials, and precision of movements.

While some critics point to the similarity of their designs to those of more famous brands, this can be seen as an advantage for those seeking the aesthetics of a luxury watch without the associated high cost.

Ultimately, these watches represent a standout option within the mid-range watch market, offering enthusiasts exceptional quality, inspired designs, and solid reliability at an accessible price.

Their commitment to innovation and continuous improvement, coupled with their respect for watchmaking tradition, establishes San Martin not only as a competitor in the market but also as a brand that is defining its own legacy within the world of horology.


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