Manufacturer: Melbourne Watch Company | Price: $850 AUD (£475 GBP, $600 USD)
I’ve been aware of Melbourne Watch Company for quite some time now. However, none of their previous models were really my cup of tea. Until now that is, with their release of the Burnley sports watch. Is it a sports watch? Yeah, that’s what I’d class it as, with maybe a hint of dress watch thrown in. Anyway, I reached out to Melbourne and they graciously sent me a Burnley in the colourway of my choice, classic silver. So, is my first experience of the brand a positive one?
- Dimensions: Diameter – 40.4mm, Thickness – 9.9mm, Lug to Lug – 47.2mm, Lug Width – 24mm
- Movement: Miyota 9015, 28,800vph, Hackable, Self Winding, 42hr Power Reserve
- Accuracy: Within -10 >> +30spd Actual: +9.1spd
- Case Material: Brushed 316L Stainless Steel (Polished Accents)
- Bracelet: Integrated 316L Stainless Steel, Solid Links, Screw Pins, Butterfly Clasp
- Crystal: Flat Sapphire, Underside Anti-Reflective Coating
- Bezel: Fixed, Brushed Water Resistance: 50m / 5ATM / 165ft
- Lume: Swiss Super Luminova® C3 Crown: Push/Pull, Signed
- Caseback: Screwed Down, Exhibition Display
- Warranty: 2 Years Weight: 157g (Sized)
- Where to Buy: Melbourne Watch Company
- Dial Options: Black, Blue, Classic Silver, Green
Melbourne Watch Co. - A Brief Introduction
“Established in 2013, the Melbourne Watch Company was founded with the goal of designing high quality timepieces that are inspired by the charm of Melbourne, which remain accessible to enthusiasts, casual collectors and beyond. In 2013 we embraced the power of the online watch community to help us launch our debut model (the Flinders Automatic) through crowd funding. The positive reaction we received to the Flinders spurred us to expand with a wider range of designs and set our sights on establishing a physical presence in the heart of Melbourne. We recently passed our seventh year anniversary and are proud to have successfully released more than ten models to date, all inspired by Melbourne.
In 2016 we decided that we wanted to establish a ‘home’ where we could offer something different to the standard ‘watches behind glass’ retail experience. Our showroom allows our customers to connect with our team in person, explore our collections in a relaxed environment and take a look behind the scenes in our workshop. If you are in Melbourne, we’d love to see you here! One of our driving goals is to be more than ‘just a website’ by working and employing locally in Melbourne. Our team are all passionate about horology and know the intricacies of the timepieces we design. We are all happy to personally answer any questions you may have online or in our showroom. We firmly believe our team’s hands-on approach allows us to provide exceptional quality and service at every stage of our customer experience.“
Case & Crown
The case of the Melbourne Burnley has a diameter of 40.4mm, smaller than the stated 42mm on Melbourne’s website. I’m pretty sure they must have included the crown guards when taking their measurements. Anyway, the lug to lug is 47.2mm and the overall thickness, including the sapphire crystal, albeit flat, I measured in at a very svelte 9.9mm! The entire case, bezel, crown and bracelet are all 316L stainless steel. The finishing of the watch is mostly brushed, but with tastefully done and very well executed polished accents that are pretty much everywhere on the case & bracelet. I’m glad that Melbourne went down this overall finishing route and not the full blown, scratch magnet of polished finishing everywhere.
The Burnley has a water resistance rating of just 50m, which is perfectly acceptable for this style of watch. You’re hardly going diving with this one. The proportions of the watch, in my opinion, are superb for my 6¾″ wrist, due to the relatively short lug to lug distance of around 47mm. The Burnley wears very well on wrist and is extremely comfortable overall.
The signed crown is nice and does look great. There is no wobble either when the crown is in use, although it isn’t screw down, which is pretty much expected I suppose. I would have preferred it if it had been screw down though, just for my own piece of mind. The caseback incorporates an exhibition display with the usual specs around the edges, although if I’m honest, they shouldn’t have really bothered, as the bog standard Miyota 9015 movement isn’t exactly amazing to look at. Sure, Melbourne have put their logo on the slightly customised rotor etc, but it’s still nothing to write home about.
Strap / Bracelet
Straight out of the box, the Melbourne Burnley comes fitted as standard with a solid, fully intergrated stainless steel bracelet. It is very well made indeed, with extremely nice brushed finishing with the addition of tastefully done polished accents that matches the watch perfectly. Each link is very smooth on both sides that boosts the overall comfort level.
The bracelet tapers from 24mm at the widest part, down to around 19.5mm at the clasp. The clasp itself is of the butterfly variety, which isn’t my favourite style of clasp, although this one is very nicely manufactured. Sized up for my 6¾″ wrist, I had to remove 4 links, which was very easy to do with the included screw pins for adjusting & re-sizing.
The chosen movement for the Melbourne Burnley is the smooth sweep, high beat 9015 from Miyota. This is a slim Japanese made 28,800vph, 24 jewel movement regularly compared to the Swiss ETA 2824-2. Checking the accuracy after running the Burnley for a couple of weeks, mainly on wrist and occasionally in my watch winder, I was pretty pleased with the results, with the Burnley showing an average of 9.1spd, which is a respectable result overall and well within spec.
Dial & Bezel
The effect on the dial looks great with the vertical brushing style effect. Additionally, the hour markers at the 3, 6, 9 & 12 o’clock positions have been utilised to include the only lume on the dial, as well as the hour and minute hands of course. More on the lume later… The hands have a blue effect, although I don’t think they are thermally blued, as I can’t find anything on the Melbourne website that states or confirms this. So they’re probably painted, however they do look very nice! I additionally really like the counter balance on the seconds hand too, with the inclusion of the Melbourne “M” logo.
The lume on the Melbourne Burnley is disappointing, but somewhat expected for this style of watch. There just isn’t enough real estate due to the thin batons and it’s only applied on the 3, 6, 9 & 12 markers. The lume on the hands I can only describe as adequate. The actual formula that’s been applied is Swiss Super Luminova® C3 but it’s nowhere near enough to be effective in dark or low light situations. As I previously stated though, it’s expected for a sports watch.
My first experience of Melbourne Watch Company has been a very pleasant one. The build quality of the Burnley is superb, both the actual watch and the bracelet looking like they’ve been designed and manufactured as one and not like some other companies I could mention, where it looks like just a bunch of off-the-shelf parts nailed together. So why doesn’t the Burnley get a full blown 10 out of 10 I hear you ask? Well, it’s almost there. I’d just like to see a few changes made to make what I would consider the ideal sports watch. It leans too much towards the dress watch side of things in my opinion, especially with the fonts that have been used. I’d also include a screw down crown and I’d change the clasp on the bracelet to something more erm… sporty. That’d also give the watch more fine tuning on the sizing side of things.
I understand that I may have been a little too harsh towards the Burnley in this conclusion, but that’s because the watch as a whole, is so close to being a totally outstanding sports watch. If Melbourne Watch Company ever make a Mk2 of the Burnley, I’d really hope they’d fine tune it and change the small negative points that I mentioned above.
Melbourne Watch Co – A very nice watch indeed, however with a few tweeks it could be phenomenal!