The Prospex Seiko Monster is straight up one of the most talks about polarizing dive watches ever. On one half that indulges in their quality and packs with value, while on the other hand, some find it over the top aggressive on its design. But with the nickname “Monster,” designated to be unsympathetic in all ways, it sets the standard of its very own iconic traits.
Third Generation Monster in Orange Ref. SBDC075
Today, the Monster Orange Ref. SBDC075 is the third generation of the Monster line, falling into Seiko’s Prospex collection, which is built with very high standards to be used by professionals. This color configuration heavily based on the coveted Gen one Monster Orange Ref. SKX781, which arguably the most iconic one that sets the Seiko Monster range on watch-heads’ radar.
Before we get started with this orange beauty (ironically for a Monster), a little bit on the history of the coloraturas choice orange and why it still is an attractive selection. Orange dial dive watches are all the rave back in the 60s and have only increased in popularity since then. It all started when dive watch brands like Doxa and Squale (for the Swiss side) and Seiko, tested colored dials at their local lake and test grounds, where realization on that orange was the most legible at a depth of approx. 30 feet. Watch enthusiasts realized that despite the primary purpose of orange dial divers are mend to aid readability, they have quite an appeal and a retro flair that draws collectors into getting one of these.
Third Generation with JDM movement, 6R15
First off, the main improvement will be in the movement upgrade. The SBDC075 boast the most desirable automatic movement among its precursors that uses the 7S26 caliber launched in 1996 and the 4R36 that are used on many base models currently. The 6R15 operates at 21,600 BPH (3 Hertz) with hacking and hand winding capabilities. It has 23 jewels with a power reserve of 50 hours through a Spron 510 mainspring.
The 200m water resistant Monster stainless steel case embodies the beautiful craftsmanship and bold lines. Measuring 42mm case without the crown, which is 1 mm smaller than the first generation, and has a thickness of 13mm, with a lug width of 20mm.
The Monster Orange Ref. SBDC075 being the third iteration of the Monster collection, in design manner, it's highly rated as the truest to Gen one design of the most iconic SKX781 Orange Monster with some enhancement that makes the latter much more robust and attractive.
Iconic case design, water resistant to 200m
Starting from its case, it mainly has fine satin brush finishing, giving it a proper tool watch look, and unique grooves on the sides only seen on the Monster series, which helps one to have a more comfortable grip on the bezel. Further, the SBDC075 features a semi-shroud design on the top and bottom of the case, keeping the refined bezel protected when not in use.
The other Monster’s trait will be the bezel. It is a one piece of steel that concave slightly with prominent engraved black markers on it (same goes to all the Monster model). It rotates buttery smooth into 120 positions has zero free play in a clockwise direction. What's more, the details done on the bezel grooves are so unique that you do not see on other Seiko watches. To finish things up, the screw down crown at four o'clock flanged by its crown guard has knurling around it for better grip and easy usage during time-adjustment.
Orange Dial with Applied Markers
Moving on to the back of the watch, the screw down case back allows 200m water resistant and is also brushed, featuring the recognizable tsunami emblem that is a staple on the other Seiko divers. Oh, please don’t forget about the lug holes, allowing swapping of straps with ease.
Now, let’s talk about the dial details. Gone are those shark teeth-looking hour markers found on the 2nd generation like the SRP307/309. The SBDC075 features a sunburst bright orange dial that dances with different lightings (a step up from the matte orange dial found on the predecessor SKX781), while is being paired with applied block markers with silver trims, and it's signature trapezoid 12-hour markers at the top, true to the original Gen one design. The impeccable hour markers and hands are both generously coated with Seiko's LumiBrite allowing it to glow brightly in the dark for hours.
Further, the Hardlex crystal now has a magnifying cyclop at the 3 o’clock date position, which we have never seen on any other generations.
Seiko's LumiBrite Luminous
Therefore, all these have enhanced the Monster Orange feels a notch higher than other serious dive watches in the same price point.
The design of the steel bracelet stays true to all its generations, and compliments the watch beautifully, having it brushed mainly, with polished sides and slightly at mid-portion, giving the Deep Blue Monster a serious tool watch look and feel.
All in all, for more than a decade, the Monster is still one of the best bangs for buck Seiko professional dive watch, that looks unapologetic in design. The Prospex Monster Orange Ref. SBDC075 is durable and legible, with a proven robust automatic movement, excellent casework, and featuring a unique sunburst dial.