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RonFromOregon

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 16, 2008
115
85
I'm trying to decide between Stainless Steel or Aluminum for my Apple Watch Series 4 order. For me, it boils down the the sapphire screen that's on the stainless steel models. Some reviews I just checked out say that the screen is almost totally unreadable in daylight because of the reflection from the sapphire screen, while the aluminum's glass display is much easier to read.

Can any current Apple Watch owners comment on this? Am I worrying out the glare too much?
 

DDustiNN

macrumors 68020
Jan 27, 2011
2,493
1,418
I have never noticed any issue with glare.

But I will say that while my Series 0 stainless steel casing has tons of scratches all over, the screen is still pristine. It’s kinda mind-boggling how impressive that is. It’s been accidentally banged into tons of things, but still not a single scratch or blemish to be seen. Not even a micro scratch. Meanwhile I treat my iPhone X like a baby and its screen still has a couple of micro scratches. Why aren’t they making the iPhone glass out of this stuff?!
 
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saltd

macrumors 6502a
Aug 1, 2010
760
371
I’ve also had no such problem. That sapphire glass is a must have for me. Not a single scratch, and it’s been through a lot. My experience with the regular glass has not been good. Hairline scratches almost right away.
 

RonFromOregon

macrumors regular
Original poster
Jul 16, 2008
115
85
Thanks for all the replies! Which stainless do you prefer? I'm thinking either Stainless (shiny) or Black Stainless. Side note: It's really tough to tell the difference in pictures between the Space Gray Aluminum and Space Black Stainless.
 

canyonblue737

macrumors 68020
Jan 10, 2005
2,214
2,745
I've had zero issues with my SBSS S3. And lets make this clear... the display is FLAWLESS, not a mark after lots of hard living for a year. Glare is not a reason not to get a sapphire screen, the only reason is $$$$ or if you absolutely hate stainless steel as a material.
 

aloecool

macrumors 6502
Mar 30, 2011
261
44
I'm trying to decide between Stainless Steel or Aluminum for my Apple Watch Series 4 order. For me, it boils down the the sapphire screen that's on the stainless steel models. Some reviews I just checked out say that the screen is almost totally unreadable in daylight because of the reflection from the sapphire screen, while the aluminum's glass display is much easier to read.

Can any current Apple Watch owners comment on this? Am I worrying out the glare too much?

Never had a problem with my current S0 SS and plan to get the S4 SS
 

cwanja

macrumors 6502a
Jun 23, 2010
742
436
Texas
Thanks for all the replies! Which stainless do you prefer? I'm thinking either Stainless (shiny) or Black Stainless. Side note: It's really tough to tell the difference in pictures between the Space Gray Aluminum and Space Black Stainless.
Could not agree more. Search some hands on from Engadget, Verge, etc to see the space black stainless steel. That’s the only way to really see it. MacRumors did not get any good photos of them.
 

DDustiNN

macrumors 68020
Jan 27, 2011
2,493
1,418
Thanks for all the replies! Which stainless do you prefer? I'm thinking either Stainless (shiny) or Black Stainless. Side note: It's really tough to tell the difference in pictures between the Space Gray Aluminum and Space Black Stainless.
I like the silver. It looks nicer to me, and you can polish out most scratches easily. The Black is nice too, but I prefer the contrast between silver sides and black face.

As for the aluminum, the difference is very noticeable in person. Stainless is very shiny and sleek-looking, while aluminum is a matte finish like most of the phones. Check out some videos as pics don’t do it any justice. Or if you have the ability, check them out in-store.

But the glass is more than worth the premium, if you can afford it and hate scratches. Leave a screen protector out of the equation because those just look silly.
 

MrGimper

macrumors G3
Sep 22, 2012
8,715
12,372
Andover, UK
I'm going to be that guy and say that it's not sapphire glass. It's sapphire crystal or glass. Sapphire isn't a type of glass.

Now that's over, I have a series 2 SS and the crystal is flawless and I buff the case with a cape cod cloth. I may go for the series 4 SS but as I'm in the UK on O2 I won't get to use cellular or the ECG, so kinda kills a lot of the appeal (I don't actually want cellular, but with no GPS only option, I feel I should to justify the price hike!)
 

Newtons Apple

Suspended
Mar 12, 2014
22,757
15,254
Jacksonville, Florida
I'm trying to decide between Stainless Steel or Aluminum for my Apple Watch Series 4 order. For me, it boils down the the sapphire screen that's on the stainless steel models. Some reviews I just checked out say that the screen is almost totally unreadable in daylight because of the reflection from the sapphire screen, while the aluminum's glass display is much easier to read.

Can any current Apple Watch owners comment on this? Am I worrying out the glare too much?

LOL! Yes you are worrying too much.
 
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44267547

Cancelled
Jul 12, 2016
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I have never noticed any issue with glare.

But I will say that while my Series 0 stainless steel casing has tons of scratches all over, the screen is still pristine. It’s kinda mind-boggling how impressive that is. It’s been accidentally banged into tons of things, but still not a single scratch or blemish to be seen. Not even a micro scratch. Meanwhile I treat my iPhone X like a baby and its screen still has a couple of micro scratches. Why aren’t they making the iPhone glass out of this stuff?!

The Difference being that your first generation stainless steel Apple Watch has a sapphire display, which is extremely protective and durable, compared to the glass that’s used on your iPhone X display, which doesn’t acquire that level of protection, totally two different types of displays.
 

OllyW

Moderator
Staff member
Oct 11, 2005
17,196
6,800
The Black Country, England
The Difference being that your first generation stainless steel Apple Watch has a sapphire display, which is extremely protective and durable, compared to the glass that’s used on your iPhone X display, which doesn’t acquire that level of protection, totally two different types of displays.
That's probably why he asked "Why aren’t they making the iPhone glass out of this stuff?" :)

I've never had any problems with glare on my SS watch either.
 

Vanilla35

macrumors 68040
Apr 11, 2013
3,344
1,453
Washington D.C.
Thanks for all the replies! Which stainless do you prefer? I'm thinking either Stainless (shiny) or Black Stainless. Side note: It's really tough to tell the difference in pictures between the Space Gray Aluminum and Space Black Stainless.

I recommend looking at some other threads where people post pictures of their watch; there are several pictures of Space Black SS models.

In terms of being concerned with sunlight, older models did not have nearly as bright of a display and it was more of an issue. Now the screen is 1000 nits which is super bright, and visibility is more of a non-issue. This is my assessment based on what I've read, however I'll be getting my first apple watch this series.
 

macduke

macrumors G5
Jun 27, 2007
13,299
20,079
Why aren’t they making the iPhone glass out of this stuff?!
Because the iPhone usually needs better impact resistance. Glass can be harder without being stronger. Sapphire is very hard but not quite as strong as the glass used on the aluminum Apple Watch and the iPhone. I accidentally slammed my Series 0 42mm SS against my stainless steel refrigerator door handle while walking by on presidential election night in 2016 and gave it a hairline crack along the right side. Fortunately this hasn't impacted performance and it is hardly noticeable except in bright light at certain angles up close—but now I have to be very careful with water. I am now more cognizant of my arms (honestly I was already pretty good before this because I used to bang my old mechanical watch on doorknobs all the time) and I have ordered a 44mm SS Series 4 to replace it so hopefully it doesn't happen again. I was hoping by now that they would create some sort of hybrid glass with like a sapphire laminate on the top layer but I guess not. Hopefully it is has improved in some small ways.
 

supertomtom

macrumors 6502a
Sep 21, 2007
636
670
Gold Coast, Australia
Thanks for all the replies! Which stainless do you prefer? I'm thinking either Stainless (shiny) or Black Stainless. Side note: It's really tough to tell the difference in pictures between the Space Gray Aluminum and Space Black Stainless.

Go to the stickied “show off your Apple Watch” thread at the top. Many people have posted photos of their space black watches on there. I’ve had silver and black SS, both held up very well and no issues with glare. I personally loved the SB, but had gone with gold this time for something different.
 

44267547

Cancelled
Jul 12, 2016
37,642
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Go to the stickied “show off your Apple Watch” thread at the top. Many people have posted photos of their space black watches on there. I’ve had silver and black SS, both held up very well and no issues with glare. I personally loved the SB, but had gone with gold this time for something different.

I actually was purchasing the gold stainless, but change my mind last minute, and went for the space black. The space black not also looks really good obviously, but the advantage is most are not aware of it has the DLC coating, which really protects the casing from damage.
 

DDustiNN

macrumors 68020
Jan 27, 2011
2,493
1,418
I actually was purchasing the gold stainless, but change my mind last minute, and went for the space black. The space black not also looks really good obviously, but the advantage is most are not aware of it has the DLC coating, which really protects the casing from damage.
I have seen mentions that the gold uses the same coating as the space black. Is this not true?
 

44267547

Cancelled
Jul 12, 2016
37,642
42,493
I have seen mentions that the gold uses the same coating as the space black. Is this not true?

I don't know if that it's true or not. Apple's website doesn't verify that the Gold stainless uses the DLC coating. The only way to know is it Apple verifies this to the customer through email or through scratch testing the gold stainless when it does launch for hands-on reviews. If I had to guess, I would say does not use the DLC coating, which was exclusive to the black stainless, but it is very possible.
 
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Picapau21

macrumors 6502a
Apr 26, 2015
510
298
Although I really like the space black colour, personally I would not pick the watch based on the DLC coating. It’s an expensive purchase which is both a tech gadget and a fashion accessory which you’ll be looking at every day and so if stainless steel or another non DLC coated colour is your favorite then I would get that one. If you keep the watch for a few years there will be virtually no resale value left, scratches or no scratches.
 

KarimLeVallois

macrumors 68020
Feb 22, 2014
2,394
1,585
London
I don't know if that it's true or not. Apple's website doesn't verify that the Golds stainless uses the DLC coating. The only way to know is it Apple verifies this to the customer through email or through scratch testing the gold stainless when it does launch for hands-on reviews. If I had to guess, I would say does not use the DLC coating, which was exclusive to the black stainless, but it is very possible.

Sure I read somewhere that the SS gold was vapour, rather than DLC. I’ll email Stan the man and ask him right now...
 
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