Today I’m going to write about Orient Bambino watch review, which is one of Orient’s popular watches due to a number of reasons: it is a very affordable watch for an automatic and also very good looking. Orient release quite a number of Bambinos over the year with some minor upgrade here and there (you can refer to the Orient website here for more detail).
In this post, I’m going to specifically review the FER24004B0 version which is the black dial version. Without further ado, let’s look at Orient Bambino review!
Orient Bambino Automatic Watch FER24004B0 Specification
Diameter: 40.5 mm
Thickness: 11.8 mm
Lug to Lug: 46 mm
Lug Width: 21 mm
Case: Stainless steel case with screw down caseback
Strap: Leather strap with buckle
Dial: Black dial with silver index markers and date display at 3 o’clock
Hands: Dauphine shaped silver colored hands
Dial Window: Domed Mineral crystal
Movement: Orient Caliber 48743 automatic self-wind movement with 21 jewels. 21600 vibration per hour or 6 beats per second. Non-hacking and non-manual winding.
Power Reserve: 40 hours
Accuracy: +- 15 seconds per day
Water Resistance: 30 m or 99 ft
Best Place To Buy: Amazon for around $200
Up close on the retro dial
Orient has always been one of my favorite watch manufacturer because of their quality products that comes at a very affordable price. The brand has about 60 years of watchmaking experience which is quite young actually if you compared with some of American and Swiss brands that can have more than 100 years of history such as Tissot, Hamilton, Bulova and Heuer.
But one thing that makes Orient unique is they predominantly sell affordable watches with movements that they produced on their own. Now that is very interesting as some brands nowadays uses movements from other company (Tissot, Bulova, etc).
This tenacity to hold on to their tradition despite challenges in the current world is what makes Orient and interesting and unique brand.
A Beautiful Retro Watch
On a first glance, you can notice that this is a retro styling watch. The totally circular case with the black dial and index markers really give it away. There are many versions of Bambino released by Orient by I like this one the most because of its cool and stylish black dial.
It makes is more versatile to be worn with any jeans or suit. The silver index markers and dauphine hands really complement the black dial nicely. The pointy index markers looks sharp and a nice design choice by Orient.
Orient chooses to put minimal signatures on the dial. There are only the Orient logo, “Automatic” and “Water Resist” signatures on the dial. All of them save the Orient logo have a minimal size. The watch is almost symmetric if not because of the date display and crown at 3 o’clock position.
There is no bezel on the watch making the dial to cover the entire 40.5 mm diameter case. As a result, we are getting more dial and can cause it to look bigger than it actually is.
The Orient Bambino watch viewed from an angle. Notice the curvature of the protruding dial window at the top of the watch
Unique Protruding Domed Dial Window
The lug to lug width is only 46 mm. One interesting thing is the watch has a full thickness of 11.8 mm. But the stainless steel case covers only 70% of the thickness while the remaining thickness is due to the domed dial window.
The mineral crystal window is really something that is very unique and reminds me of the Tissot Visodate. It is really protruding out from the case and gives a nice touch to the watch. One important thing to note is that the dial window is mineral crystal which is not really as scratch resistant as sapphire.
Care should be taken while wearing this watch to make sure the dial window is not scratched (because it will be very easy to be scratched because of the protruding dome shape). I recommend to only wear it for indoor activities only.
One thing that I don’t understand is the 21 mm lug width of this watch. 21 mm is a rare lug width for a watch. Typical lug width for a watch with a 40-45 mm diameter are 20 mm and 22 mm. So a 21 mm lug width is quite rare to find. It will also make it difficult to buy a matching strap to replace the strap if you don’t like the black leather strap it comes with.
One way to get around this is to use a 22 mm strap but the strap’s end connecting to the lug need to be tapered/cut off a bit to make it fit. I really hope Orient will change the lug width to 20 mm in future upgrade versions of this watch.
Looking at the Orient Bambino from side
Orient Cal. 48743 – A No Frills Automatic Movement
The watch is powered by Cal. 48743. It is an automatic self-wind watch movement with 21 jewels. It has 21600 vibration per hour or 6 beats per second which is the minimal standard for automatic watch nowadays. The low beat movement will cause the second hand to move not as smooth as an expensive watch though it is much better than a tick-tock quartz watch of course. The watch also has 40 hours power reserve and a +- 15 second accuracy per day.
It seriously looks great with anything. It will looks good in suits and even jeans (shown above)
The movement can be considered Orient’s lowest grade movement as it do not have hacking and manual winding feature. Without the hacking, we cannot set the watch to a precise time. The manual winding is something that is quite important. As an example, I will usually rotate my watches so there are some days that some watch won’t get any wrist time.
Being a mechanical watch, it is important for it to be continuously running so that it will keep its accuracy and keep its parts well oiled (think of a car that have difficulty to start after sitting in the garage for a long time). A manual winding feature will allow me to increase the power reserve of my unused watches so that it can last for one whole day without being worn.
An automatic watch without manual winding is not really convenient in my point of view. But the counter measure to this issue by making the rotor to be very easy to rotate. This in theory will make it able to store more power reserve with less wrist time than an ordinary automatic movement.
Apart from its original black leather strap, it also looks good in this brown strap for a more casual look
Orient Bambino Automatic Watch FER24004B0 Advantages And Disadvantages
I’ve summarized the advantages and disadvantages of the Orient Bambino below:
1- Good looking retro watch with fine details
2- Domed dial window is very unique and a great design by Orient
3- Black dial with silver hands and markers look sharp and beautiful
1- A 21 mm lug width will make finding a replacement strap quite difficult
2- Non-hacking and non-manual winding movement features are absent in this watch.
3- Mineral crystal is easy to be scratched
Where To Get Orient Bambino Watch?
If you are ;ooking to buy the Orient Bambino, Amazon has the watch listed on their website for around $200. There are also other version of the Bambino that can be browsed in Amazon. Click the link below to check out the Bambino deals on Amazon.
A detail video review of the watch. The watch just looks more beautiful in this video than on pictures – well, most watches are not really photogenic =)
Orient Bambino is a very affordable and beautiful dress watch. Sure, there are lots of things that I would wish the watch to have (hacking and manual winding, sapphire crystal, 20 mm lug width, etc.) but then we have to remind ourselves that this is a $200 watch.
For just around $200, we are getting a classic looking Orient Japanese automatic watch which is built with their famed high quality detail and craftsmanship. If you are looking for a beater watch that looks beautiful to look at, then this watch fits the bill nicely.
Hope you gained some insight from this Orient Bambino review. I hope you can leave any comments or any questions regarding the Bambino. I would love to hear what you guys think about this amazing watch. Till next time.