Nordgreen Pioneer (Review)

Today we are gonna look at very simple, yet nice looking chronograph from a company called Nordgreen. Nordgreen is a small company located in Denmark and you can see the Scandinavian design in the watch too by its simplistic lines and round angles. The company is all about sustainability so with each watch sold you can donate to three good causes called the “Giving Back Program” Basically when you purchase the watch, you get it and then you can go to their website to choose to which cause you want to donate “health” which is providing water for Africa, “Education” which provides education for Indian children, “Environment” which helps to preserve the rain forest. So you choose one of the causes and then you put in your info and the purchase number and the serial number of the watch. They can track each watch serial and to which each one has donated. I think this is a really great idea and gives the watch a special meaning in my opinion! Basically, you get a watch and do something good for the world too 🙂

The watch arrived in a very simple rectangular box. Inside you will find a watch and some papers (instructions, warranty). The first impressions were ok-ish, I’m just not a big fan of these style of watches + this is more of a fashion and my readers have been asking for some good fashion watch reviews that aren’t the usual ones like Daniel Wellington, Michael Kors, Armani etc. This one is actually pretty well built, with good case and finishing, sapphire crystal and japan movement. It has some good specs and for just 270$ I think it is far more superior than a Daniel Wellington for 190$, yes it costs more,, but you have to take in mind that to make one Daniel Wellington watch, it costs for the manufacturer about 20 cents, but to manufacture the Pioneer, it probably is much more!

The Pioneer watch case is made of 316L stainless steel. The case is very well made actually. It has a round shape with round side and lugs have this beefy wire lug look. The whole watch has a satin-brushed finish except the case back. Finishing is pretty good on the watch and it is consistent. The case diameter is 42mm, the thickness is 12,5mm, lug to lug distance is 47mm and the lug width is 20mm. The dimensions are really great and the watch actually wears a lot smaller than it is due to how the lugs look and how they are angled downwards. On the wrist, the watch wears like 40mm. At 3 o’clock we have a push-pull crown which is signed and has a great grip. At 2 and 4 o’clock we have big pushers for chronograph start and stop functions. The pushers feel really great and have that nice clickiness to them just like a mechanical chronograph. The only thing that in my opinion is wrong with this watch is the snap-on case back, it just cheapens the whole watch, I would’ve put on the screw-in case back, that would not only increase the water resistance, but also make it easier to get into the watch and make it stronger overall. These case backs usually are very thin and easily bend even when a watchmaker with great experience tries to open it to change the battery. On top of the watch sits a domed sapphire crystal with no AR coating, which is a shame, but nothing that I can’t overcome. The water resistance is 5ATM (50m), but it is only good for maybe light rain and washing hands, but nothing more. A lot of people write me about the water-resistance and I always say to them, if a watch has no screw-down crown, I highly suggest no swimming with it, even if it has 100m water resistance. And with chronographs, you should come even close to water activities. One mistake pushing the pusher underwater and the watch is flooded.

The dial is matte dark blue. Around the dial, we have a high chapter ring with minute marking printed in white and applied hour markers. The chapter ring gives a nice depth to the dial. Then we have two subdials, the one at 9 is for chronograph and the one at 3 o’clock is small seconds. At 6 o’clock we have a nice round date window which is nicely integrated into the dial and I like that they made it in the middle, just makes everything symmetrical! The hour and minute hands are silver with a blue middle part. The second’s hand is blue with a red tip. Sadly there is no lume on any part of the dial.

About the movement I don’t know what is inside, my guess would be that it has the Miyota quartz chronograph movement. Nothing much to say here anymore. It works, shows the time and has a sweeping chronograph second’s hand. The strap that came with the watch is a brown genuine leather one. The strap is pretty supple and feels good. The underside is lined with beige soft material and is signed with Nordgreen logo. The regular tang style buckle is polished and signed. The thing that I love about all these microbrands is that they are using these quick release spring bars which are really great for changing straps fast!

Overall the watch is pretty good! It doesn’t stand out, has great specifications and so it makes it a great daily watch. It goes well with casual clothes and also goes well with a suit. Yes, there are some things I would change like the snap-on case back and the missing AR coating on the crystal. But I have to say it is very well built and for a 279$ you get a whole lot of watch! And it comes in 3 dial colour variations (black, white and blue), 3 case colour variations (steel, rose gold, gunmetal) and with a ton of strap options and colours.

Price 279$ @ nordgreen.com

  • Case Thickness 11.9m
  • Case Width 42mm
  • Case Material 316L Stainless Steel
  • Case Color Silver / Rose Gold / Gun Metal
  • Dial Color Navy
  • Glass Domed Sapphire Crystal
  • Movement Japanese Quartz
  • Strap Width 20mm
  • Strap Leather
  • Strap Color Brown
  • Interchangeable Straps Yes
  • Water Resistant Up to 5 ATM (Rain resistant)

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