So, how good is the DLC really?

Mondayz

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Sep 14, 2018
13
6
So, I'm definitely getting a stainless steel version, and I'm pretty set on the gold version., but I can't help but feel like I'm leaving something on the table by going for a version that doesn't come with the DLC. How big of a deal is it really? Will the DLC keep the watch looking like new substantially longer than the gold version without it? Any anecdotal personal stories or professional evidence through sources anyone can share?
 

Fynd

macrumors 6502
Aug 11, 2010
427
234
So, I'm definitely getting a stainless steel version, and I'm pretty set on the gold version., but I can't help but feel like I'm leaving something on the table by going for a version that doesn't come with the DLC. How big of a deal is it really? Will the DLC keep the watch looking like new substantially longer than the gold version without it? Any anecdotal personal stories or professional evidence through sources anyone can share?
The DLC is amazing. I've had 2 SBSS now and they went almost a full year of ownership without even the tiniest of blemishes .It's crazy .The SS looks like the back of an old iPod after a week. I still like both, mind you, and the SS can be polished.

I'm curious how the gold is going to work. It's not a coating?
 
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Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,248
34,260
So, I'm definitely getting a stainless steel version, and I'm pretty set on the gold version., but I can't help but feel like I'm leaving something on the table by going for a version that doesn't come with the DLC. How big of a deal is it really? Will the DLC keep the watch looking like new substantially longer than the gold version without it? Any anecdotal personal stories or professional evidence through sources anyone can share?
If you’re somebody that is concerned about scratches or scuffs on the Apple Watch, the black stainless watch is the only way to go. It has the DLC coating, which isn’t guaranteed to protect against scratches, but it’s very durable and resistant to scratches for the most part. I too have owned two space black Apple Watches and neither of them had any damage to the casing due to the DLC.
 

Lennyvalentin

macrumors 65816
Apr 25, 2011
1,429
783
I'm curious how the gold is going to work. It's not a coating?
It'll surely be a coating of some sort, as I don't think there's any gold(ish)-colored stainless steel alloys... Maybe a form of anodization/dye-treatment, like colored aluminium products receive, if that is possible to do with steel. Or maybe electroplating... *shrug* A laquer coat seems too fragile, IMO.
 

KarimLeVallois

macrumors 68020
Feb 22, 2014
2,193
1,353
London
It'll surely be a coating of some sort, as I don't think there's any gold(ish)-colored stainless steel alloys... Maybe a form of anodization/dye-treatment, like colored aluminium products receive, if that is possible to do with steel. Or maybe electroplating... *shrug* A laquer coat seems too fragile, IMO.
Stan at Apple confirmed this earlier to me...

Hi Karim,
It is a PVD process. Thanks.

-stan
 
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playaproved

macrumors 6502
Sep 29, 2005
329
133
My 3.5 year old SBSS watch looks perfect and I’ve worn it every day since I bought it.

I’ve banged it on countless things and it’s still holding up perfectly. I have the matching Milanese loop and it’s in great shape too.

Just ordered a brand new series 4 and I’m looking forward to getting 3+ years out of it.
 

justinf77

macrumors 6502
May 18, 2003
449
299
My 3.5 year old SBSS watch looks perfect and I’ve worn it every day since I bought it.

I’ve banged it on countless things and it’s still holding up perfectly. I have the matching Milanese loop and it’s in great shape too.

Just ordered a brand new series 4 and I’m looking forward to getting 3+ years out of it.
Any issues with the Milanese loop scratching the SBSS? That's the only reason I've been hesitant to buy it.
 
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macduke

macrumors G4
Jun 27, 2007
10,939
14,624
Central U.S.
I don’t really care about scratches on my SS as long as the display is clear. The case is reflective which makes it less apparent and it’s a watch. They usually get scuffed up. When I first got it I would occasionally polish it with those cape cod wipes or whatever they’re called but eventually I stopped caring. Nobody but my wife is ever close enough to me to even notice it and I just asked her and she said she has never once ever noticed it. Maybe it’s because I wore mechanical watches before this so I’m just used to it? You can’t keep it safe in your pocket all day.

Anyway, that was all just to say that you should get the one you think looks best.
 

Bazooka-joe

macrumors 68040
Mar 12, 2012
3,144
1,426
Swindon, England
Any issues with the Milanese loop scratching the SBSS? That's the only reason I've been hesitant to buy it.
A few people have said that the Milanese loop has scratched their watches and that’s both the space black and the SS. If you are getting a space black then I would avoid using the Milanese loop if you are worried about scratches
 

Luba

macrumors 65816
Apr 22, 2009
1,254
181
Lay the watch on its side instead of down flat, if you worry about scratches. :)
I found it very difficult to avoid scratches with the SB Milanese because the magnet is difficult to control, and I think the SB Milanese is stronger or sharper than SS. Maybe if you have a SBSS watch and the SBSS Milanese you'll be okay, but I paired it with my SS AW2 and it scratched the back of the watch. It didn't scratch the body of the SS as I was careful enough to avoid that.
 
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playaproved

macrumors 6502
Sep 29, 2005
329
133
Any issues with the Milanese loop scratching the SBSS? That's the only reason I've been hesitant to buy it.
None that I can see with the naked eye. Under a bright light or with a magnifying glass, there’s probably some inclusions here and there. But when wearing it and examining it normally, it’s all good.

I am super careful changing bands when the Milanese is involved and when I take it off, I extend it fully and close the magnet on itself and put it on my dock.
 

Sword86

macrumors 6502
Oct 6, 2012
263
107
Lay the watch on its side instead of down flat, if you worry about scratches. :)
With the milanese loop you just need a few days to get the hang of putting the watch on in order to prevent getting scratches. After you ‘get it’ you’ll have no problem with it scratching the case. S
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,248
34,260
Any issues with the Milanese loop scratching the SBSS? That's the only reason I've been hesitant to buy it.
The black Milanese loop can scratch the DLC coating on the space black Apple Watch, because there is a DLC coating on the space black Milanese loop, has happened to others. As far as the regular Milanese loop, that’s not as common to scratch the DLC, but to safeguard yourself, I would just lay the watch on its side versus laying it flat with the band.
 

KarimLeVallois

macrumors 68020
Feb 22, 2014
2,193
1,353
London
The black Milanese loop can scratch the DLC coating on the space black Apple Watch, because there is a DLC coating on the space black Milanese loop, has happened to others. As far as the regular Milanese loop, that’s not as common to scratch the DLC, but to safeguard yourself, I would just lay the watch on its side versus laying it flat with the band.
This is what I don’t like about the SB Milanese loop, plus the whole band gets magnetised, so tends to stick to the back of the watch occasionally no matter how careful you are.
 

danmart

macrumors 65816
Apr 24, 2015
1,287
725
Lancs, UK
I have micro scratches on my SSSB from the SB Milanese. The thing to watch out for is circumstances like going through airport security where you need to take it off and it’s difficult to carefully avoid the band rubbing against the side of the watch. Whenever I am anticipating a situation like that I wear a different band.

But putting it on / off at morning / bedtime where you typically aren’t rushed and can carefully place the watch on it’s side aren’t an issue.

You can’t actually see the micro scratches unless you get super-close, though, so it’s far from a major issue. Put it this way, I’ve ordered space black for a third time...
 
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KarimLeVallois

macrumors 68020
Feb 22, 2014
2,193
1,353
London
I have micro scratches on my SSSB from the SB Milanese. The thing to watch out for is circumstances like going through airport security where you need to take it off and it’s difficult to carefully avoid the band rubbing against the side of the watch. Whenever I am anticipating a situation like that I wear a different band.

But putting it on / off at morning / bedtime where you typically aren’t rushed and can carefully place the watch on it’s side aren’t an issue.

You can’t actually see the micro scratches unless you get super-close, though, so it’s far from a major issue. Put it this way, I’ve ordered space black for a third time...
Just take a sports sock with you in your bad and wrap it around that. Not an “American Pie” sports sock, just the trainer ones lol
[doublepost=1537102458][/doublepost]
I have micro scratches on my SSSB from the SB Milanese. The thing to watch out for is circumstances like going through airport security where you need to take it off and it’s difficult to carefully avoid the band rubbing against the side of the watch. Whenever I am anticipating a situation like that I wear a different band.

But putting it on / off at morning / bedtime where you typically aren’t rushed and can carefully place the watch on it’s side aren’t an issue.

You can’t actually see the micro scratches unless you get super-close, though, so it’s far from a major issue. Put it this way, I’ve ordered space black for a third time...
Once you go black...
 

joeob

macrumors member
Apr 21, 2015
82
44
I’m actually not that impressed with my space black 44mm this time around.

I’ve had it 14 days exactly and I’ve noticed it had a number of micro-scratches - some bigger then others.

Not overly impressed for a watch with a coating that claims to be more durable. And that cost me £850 and is less than a month old.
 

vintagekeys

macrumors regular
Aug 22, 2018
120
44
Hong Kong
I’m actually not that impressed with my space black 44mm this time around.

I’ve had it 14 days exactly and I’ve noticed it had a number of micro-scratches - some bigger then others.

Not overly impressed for a watch with a coating that claims to be more durable. And that cost me £850 and is less than a month old.
I think this years SS Spaceblack finish is not as durable as previous models, including the sapphire screen, i feel its diluted with each generation based on feedback and shown evidence.
 

Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,248
34,260
I’m actually not that impressed with my space black 44mm this time around.

I’ve had it 14 days exactly and I’ve noticed it had a number of micro-scratches - some bigger then others.

Not overly impressed for a watch with a coating that claims to be more durable. And that cost me £850 and is less than a month old.
Can you elaborate on your post more? When you say ‘micro scratches’, are you referring to the sapphire display or are you referring to the DLC casing acquiring scratches?

I think this years SS Spaceblack finish is not as durable as previous models, including the sapphire screen, i feel its diluted with each generation based on feedback and shown evidence.
In a way, I don’t disagree with this. I owned the first GEN space black and it was very durable. Now, I have not had any damage to the other space black models, but I have read where others have mentioned they did not feel it was as durable. So it is possible they did change something, even though it’s been side confirmed internally with Apple that they still do use DLC for the casing and sapphire for the display of course.
 

Bazooka-joe

macrumors 68040
Mar 12, 2012
3,144
1,426
Swindon, England
I am still waiting for my replacement. I opted for the sport band as I have other bands that I can use but would avoid any metal band with the Space Black as I think its asking for trouble no matter how durable the coating may or may not be for the Series 4. its a shame there is no ceramic option this year but the Op should still consider the Space Black series 4 as its a major upgrade from the series 3.
 

Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,759
15,220
Jacksonville, Florida
My last three Apple watches were all SBSS. No complaints here as they all look like new after a year or more use.

Not saying you could not damage the finish but I have bashed my watch into almost everything waist height and not a single scratch.

I expect to get the same wear on my AW4.
 

joeob

macrumors member
Apr 21, 2015
82
44
Can you elaborate on your post more? When you say ‘micro scratches’, are you referring to the sapphire display or are you referring to the DLC casing acquiring scratches?

DLC casing acquiring scratches. After 14 days use.
 
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