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Vintage Seiko Watch

Vintage Seiko Watch: The Glorious Past with a Modern Interpretation

Explore the vintage Seiko watch and its glorious past, reimagined with a modern touch. Discover the timeless elegance of these timepieces.
May 21, 2024

Seiko Vintage Watch – Every watch enthusiast has their own way to get into watch collecting. Some people prefer to allocate budget first to directly go into high-end watches, others start with something like Steinhart or Seiko, while others decide to keep following the current watch trends by rapidly buying and selling timepieces. What about me? My watch collecting story started when I scrolled through eBay and took a look at vintage watches just for the fun of surfing on the internet. I was, actually, intrigued by the idea of how vintage it could be. Does a vintage watch truly carry the concept of being a great one in the past or are they the ones in the past that last until now? But, truth to be told, the price of vintage watches got me shocked that I, as a so-so office worker, wouldn’t be able to afford one.

Did I give up? Not really, I tried to dig deeper about vintage watches and encountered a reissued version for the vintage Seiko watch. That’s when I knew that it’s been common for watch brands to produce a watch collection that resembles the design of their forebears. The good news of all is that it offers reasonable prices that I realistically can acquire for less than a grand.

Read Also: Seiko Watches Under 2000

A taste of vintage in modern timepieces

The thing about vintage watches is that they would not be as accurate as modern pieces, especially when compared to quartz. It’s pricey not because of the features it carries but the magnificence of the past that it holds. They offer an experience of a blast from the past and that is what makes it unique and, thus, sought after by the watch collectors. Vintage watches are about enjoying a vintage, be it the value or stories. So, you can’t expect or take vintage timepieces along the same line with a modern watch.

Another element that differs vintage watches from modern ones is the lume. Modern watches can offer maximal legibility in the dark environment, be it with radium, tritium paint, or SuperLumiNova while vintage watches still have a bad reluming job. Sometimes it has an unnatural color or simply has been badly applied. 

I personally prefer reissued watches that would resemble ones from the past. It’s not truly vintage but a modern interpretation of a vintage watch. It retains the root design but embraces modern upgrades for better performance. The Seiko 5 Sports “Specialist Style” Silver Vintage Ref. SBSA071 is one of my favorite modern interpretations of the vintage Seiko Watch. It was made essentially based on the legendary dive watch Seiko SKX007 that was discontinued since its last production in 1996.

Taking a closer look at the dial, this vintage reissued Seiko has a  pattern textured dial that evokes sophistication while still highlighting its vintage aesthetic. The hands and indices were also coated with a Lumibrite luminous, making it glow in the dark for hours. As for the case, vintage watches mostly come in tonneau cases that reached their zenith around 1970. But in this Seiko 5 Sports “Specialist Style” Silver Vintage, Seiko takes a unique approach by introducing a faux distressed case that closely mimics the look of an aged watch.

The gem of Caliber 4R36 inside the Seiko 5 Sports “Specialist Style” Silver Vintage is also the upgraded version from the popular 7S26 movement that was used in Seiko SKX007. It features a hacking and hand-winding functionality that the previous caliber lacks in these aspects. Some might prefer a true taste of vintage watches but having a modern watch with a vintage vibe would feel like a bonus for me. It’s not only that vintage watches are more expensive but also the fact that they are hard to find.

Why the Reissue of Vintage Seiko Watch?

Well, everyone would be tempted to have one of the vintage watches from Rolex Submariner or Omega Speedmaster. While they’re indeed the true gem of great timepieces that cost thousands of dollars, there’s one thing that I consider important about jumping into a vintage watch collection — it needs to be more accessible and affordable for myself. From that point, however, it still needs to fit a number of key criteria. It should be a timepiece that possesses enough watch-enthusiast cred — so that I’ll be proud to have that timepiece circling on my wrist. And a modern interpretation of the vintage Seiko watch appears with its outstanding collection that checked all of my listicles.

A reliable movement, affordable prices, appealing design, and definitely a vintage touch. Seiko introduced its reissued vintage Seiko watch collection with the Seiko Prospex Monster Blue Vintage 200M Automatic Ref. SBDY033. It comes in with a more modern and youthful design featuring a deep sunburst blue-ish dial that promotes immaculate legibility and impeccable hour markers with Seiko’s LumiBrite for glowing brightly in the dark.

This timepiece is also applied vintage color markers that become something new from Seiko — silver trims and the signature trapezoid 12-hour markers at the top. The Caliber 4R36 also works at its best to provide an accurate movement with 41 hours of power reserve.

In addition to that, Seiko watches always come at affordable prices. With a proven reliable automatic movement, impressive casework, and unique design, this Prospex Monster Blue Vintage is indeed one of the best ones at this price point.

Read Also: Best Vintage Watch Under 1000

Final thought

Much of the appeal in vintage watches is about the taste of the past that glorifies its story and value. I would say that a vintage watch is a good piece for those who seek out pleasure and challenge in watch collecting. Meanwhile, if you are just coming into the watch-nerd world, having a reissued version might be better. A reissued vintage Seiko watch could be a good example — they have more advanced technology and better materials for their reissued collection. Not only that you would acquire a taste of modern watches with a range of features but also a feel of vintage watches on your wrist.


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