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Anyone who traces the history of Seiko’s dive watches would have to single out the 1965 62MAS (the brand's pioneer dive watch) as well as the 1968 Hi-Beat Automatic Diver 300m. With Seiko downsizing many of its dive watches over the past couple of years into more ergonomic proportions for everyday wearing, these two watch models have formed the retro-inspired benchmarks for Seiko to create modern-day renditions of its earlier dive watch styles.
Enter the new SBDC173.This new Seiko Prospex Automatic Diver 200m is not only noteworthy for its design but also its size and proportions as one of the three thinnest Prospex dive watches in the same range. Vintagey and compact, this model was inspired by the 1968 6105-8000 Automatic Diver but was downsized for greater comfort.
|Seiko Prospex 200M Diver Scuba Automatic Gilt Ref. SBDC173 / SPB315
The SBDC173 measures 41mm in diameter, with a compact lug-to-lug measurement just below 47mm (46.9mm). Although this model is just 12.3mm in height, its ergonomic size reflects its user-centric quality and functionality.
The stainless steel case of the SBDC173 with a diamond shield case coating is classically reminiscent of the late-1960s, with its “Turtle” cushion shape, straight and sharp casebands as well as circular brushed surfaces on top. Furthermore, the screw-down crown and a solid steel screwed caseback assure a comfortable 200-meter water-resistance. The top of the watch is well guarded by a sapphire crystal with internal anti-reflective coating. Also, outlined by a unidirectional rotating bezel (with a gilt-inspired color scheme) that rotates on 120-clicks featuring an aluminum insert, this watch is entirely graduated with a 60-minute scale.
Seiko's Caliber 6R35 automatic
Besides, the dial boasts of a smooth texture and a very dark gray color. Alluding to the old-school feel of the 60s, the markers, hands and diving scale are unabashedly gold-coloured. To boot, this edition can be wrapped around a wrist with a flexible 5-link brushed steel bracelet with a folding clasp, push-buttons and diving extension.
To adhere to the latest requirements of ISO standards, the date has been placed at 4:30 so all markers can be luminous and readable. Inside the compact case is the in-house caliber 6R35 movement that runs at 3Hz and that is part of the brand’s mid-range portfolio of movements. This movement is concealed behind a closed caseback and is purported to have an accuracy of -15/+25 seconds daily as well as a prolonged power reserve of 70 hours.
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Its a compelling diver and for those Seiko enthusiasts out there, you can snag this vintagey and compact winner right here, while stocks last.