BY DHANANJAY PATHAK
When it comes down to budget-friendly dive watches, Seiko is a brand that is hard to beat. Offered in several designs, solidly built, and powered by reliable automatic movements, Seiko dive watches pack a solid punch. Recently Seiko expanded its Prospex dive watch family with two new variations of its popular King Turtle and King Samurai references. A part of Seiko’s ‘Save the Ocean’ project, the SRPF77 and SRPF79 showcase the brand’s continued commitment towards the conservation of our ocean waters.
Seiko started the ‘Save the Ocean ‘initiative in collaboration with Fabien Cousteau, the grandson of famous underwater conservationist Jacques Cousteau in 2018. More than two years and four watches later, the association is still going strong with the same noble intent of protecting and preserving the oceans. And just like before, a percentage of proceeds from the sales of these new watches would go towards the Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center.
Designed to explore the depths of the ocean, both SRPF77 & SRPF79 feature textured bluish-grey dials with shadows of Manta Rays depicting a beautiful scene of the underwater environment. The dial texture is finely executed, and combined with a subtle colorway, creates a striking visual appeal. Both watches are replete with features and make use of high-quality materials. They are water-resistant to a healthy 200 meters, feature uni-directional dive time bezels with a black ceramic insert, a sapphire crystal on the front, and come attached to a blue silicone strap. Now, onto the individual references.
Thanks to its distinctive cushion style case with an offset crown, the Turtle is one of the most widely recognized Seiko dives watches out there. Measuring 45mm in diameter with a thickness of around 13.2mm, the case on the SRPF77 is on the larger side and has been designed to offer a presence on the wrist. However, the lug-less design ensures that the watch sits comfortably on a wide variety of wrists. The dial layout comprises circular and wedge-shaped lume filled applied indices for hours, a printed minute track, and a magnified day and date window at 3. Time telling is made possible using peculiar, well-sized hour and minute hands and a stick style seconds hand with a circular counterbalance. Ticking inside this watch is the Calibre 4R36 that operates at 3 Hz and offers a power reserve of around 41 hours. The retail price has been set at USD 595.
The case on the SRPF79 has a masculine shape with a circular mid-section, protruding crown guards, and sharp angular lugs. It measures 43.2mm in diameter and has a thickness of 12.8mm. The layout on this watch is slightly more refined compared to the SRPF77. This time around, you get a combination of lume filled rectangles and wedges for the hours, a printed minute track, and only a magnified date window for a cleaner look. The handset comprises a fat arrow style hour hand, a sword-shaped minute hand, and a tapering seconds hand with a lumed triangle at the center. This watch is powered by the Calibre 4R35 which once again ticks at a low 3 Hz and offers an autonomy of around 41 hours. The watch will also retail for USD 595.