Stührling is one of the lesser-known brands in the Swatch Group, although it can trace its heritage back as far as many of the more well-known brands. The Original men’s 747.03 Atrium automatic watch is one of the cheaper options available based on its current selling price and it´s a good example of the lower-priced Swiss watch market.
747.03 Atrium Mechanics
Although this watch is made by a Swiss company, the automatic ST-90050 movement that powers it is actually a China design and also features in Chinese watches. Before this upsets purists, it is worth noting that many “Swiss” movements are manufactured in China, albeit normally to Swiss specifications, so this watch isn´t as unusual as it sounds, and likely reflects the future of mid-range watchmaking. Nonetheless, it is worth noting the Chinese design because it´s one of the reasons that the 747.03 watch retails for such a low price at the moment. More unique is the coating of the dial window: Krysterna crystal. Unique to Stührling watches, the material is more shatter resistant than the sapphire glass that is often found in luxury watches, but arguably less scratch-proof. It’s a decent alternative, although we wouldn´t go so far as to call it better: there aren´t enough tests.
Design & Functions
On the appearance front, the black dial and band contrast well with the silver, gold and rose-gold cogs and details. Likewise, the Roman numeral markings are easy to read, and come in an attractive, youthful font. The embossed alligator leather strap is somewhat unique but still discretely classy, and works well with casual or more formal attire.
However, the key feature of the 747.03 is the skeletonized feature, right in the center of the dial. This is undoubtedly cool to observe, but unfortunately this pleasure is somewhat marred by the ridiculous decision to tint the hands rose-gold. Quite simply, it´s near-impossible to read the time in many light conditions, and in others it is only possible with extensive squinting.
If you find the Stuhrling Original men’s 747.03 Atrium automatic watch attractive, then the low price may make this a tempting buy if you are looking for a fashionable timepiece. However, we would warn you to be careful to think before buying, as a watch that is difficult to read will be infuriating or downright embarrassing for many of you, and there are many other watches out there that are both affordable and readable. If you´re just looking for Swiss eye candy for your wrist though, then the skeletonized dial offers that and its unusual appearance will undoubtedly spark conversation.
Finally, be aware if you are purchasing outside of Europe that there are not many accredited Stührling dealerships worldwide, so you will likely need to visit a local jewelers or post the watch away if you have any problems. This shouldn´t be a problem for most purchasers, but it´s worth noting as many of the other Swatch brands have a significantly better worldwide service network.