Seiko makes some amazing (and relatively affordable) dive watches. Here are 9 of our favorites.
When most people think about quality dive watches, Swiss companies like Rolex, Omega and Breitling come to mind.
Those are great choices, but their popularity and quality have made them very expensive and sometimes hard to find for the average buyer.
Sure, there are budget Swiss brands that make divers, but what about something more unique? Seiko is a brand that has been making timepieces of all kinds for decades, and their watch selection is hard to beat.
The company makes their own movements, has some innovative features and are constructed to a quality level not often seen in reasonably priced timepieces.
Seiko divers are among the best on the market at any price, and there are dozens of special and limited-edition models that add interesting colors and designs to the company’s catalog.
The best thing about Seiko watches is that there is a model for nearly any budget, no matter how small.
The company makes some of the most affordable watches of any type, and on the premium end their products compete with some of the biggest names in Swiss watchmaking.
Fortunately, even the cheapest Seiko watches are quite high quality, and all are very durable. The company’s dive watches are known for being accurate and tough as nails, but there are so many models that it can be difficult to choose one that works best for your needs.
The Best Seiko Dive Watches for Men
Here are some of the best Seiko dive watches available today…
The Legend: SKX007
The SKX007 is one of the most versatile and wearable watches of any kind, anywhere on earth. It works on a rubber strap, a leather band, a Jubilee bracelet or a standard oyster-style bracelet, and the best part is that it only costs a couple hundred bucks brand new.
The SKX comes in black with a black dial and bezel, but there’s a depth and richness to the timepiece’s appearance that helps it punch well above its $300 price tag.
It’s tough as nails, too, sporting a 660ft water resistance depth, Seiko’s rugged Hardlex crystal, and an automatic movement. Not too shabby for a budget watch.
Seiko’s Prospex line is broad and includes several models with professional-grade construction.
The Turtle is a great example of this, as many of the models in the line are very affordable and feature high end technologies that are usually only found on much more expensive watches.
Turtles feature an offset crown at four o’clock to prevent the watch from digging into the wearer’s hand, and several come with rich and colorful dials.
Some our favorite models are:
- SRPD21K1 – Also known as the “Great White” for its textured blue dial that looks like ocean waves.
- SBDY039 – The Green Turtle Limited Edition. This watch was only sold in Japan, but is available from several retailers online
- SBDY017 – The PADI Turtle. This watch is part of the Professional Association of Dive Instructors’ partnership with Seiko that has turned out several watches. This one is quite attractive with its “Pepsi” red and blue bezel
- SRPB11K1 – The “Blue Lagoon” Turtle. This is a limited edition watch with a deep blue dial and a blue bezel.
Also in the Prospex line is the Samurai dive watch. This shape is a bit more traditional, with the crown at 3 o’clock, but the Samurai watches are typically a bit less expensive and less capable than their Turtle cousins.
Of course, we can’t talk about Seiko Prospex without mentioning the Tuna. The Tuna watches are beefy, very capable and very popular watches that have a wide range of prices and styles.
The most compelling designs in the Tuna line are the SBDY053 Diver, which is also known as the “Ice Frost Baby Tuna”. It has a beautiful snowflake-inspired dial that really pops in all light conditions.
On the other end of the color spectrum, Seiko makes an orange sunburst dial Tuna, the SBDC075. Another distinctive design is the Gundam 40th SBDX029 Red Zaku II Tuna, which has a deep red dial and 1000m water resistance.
The MarineMaster watches are more expensive and more capable than their Prospex counterparts. Several of the watches in the line are very chunky and heavy, so they’re not for every buyer, but even with the higher price point there’s plenty of value to be had in the lineup.
Notable models from the MarineMaster line include:
- SLA021 – This is still technically a Prospex watch, but it’s labeled and sold as a MarineMaster. As an MM300 watch, it features 300m water resistance, a magnetic field-resistant case, a screw-down crown and a ceramic bezel
- SBEX007 – This limited edition watch features a Hi-Beat movement and all of the same capabilities that make Seiko MarineMasters so special. There’s 300m water resistance, a sapphire crystal, a screw-down crown and a ceramic bezel. That’s on top of the revered caliber 8L55 movement.
Of course, no list would be complete without looking at a few options from Grand Seiko…
Though it’s technically its own brand, the Seiko dive watch conversation wouldn’t be complete without discussing Grand Seiko, too.
The high-end cousin to “normal” Seiko, Grand Seiko makes timepieces of all types, including dive watches, that feature more advanced mechanical movements, more highly-finished case designs and better bracelets. Be prepared to pay a hefty premium for Grand Seiko watches.
This may be a turnoff for some buyers, as the increased price does not net an instantly recognizable premium brand name, but don’t be fooled. Grand Seiko makes some of the best watches of any type on the market today.
Some of the best dive options from Grand Seiko include:
- SBGA231 – The Spring Drive 200m Diver Watch features Grand Seiko’s innovative spring drive movement cased completely in titanium. The sapphire crystal has been given an anti-reflective coating for better visibility underwater
- Hi-Beat 36000 – This one serious dive watch. The Hi-Beat 36000 features Grand Seiko’s Caliber 9S85 movement, which has a power reserve of 55 hours and 36,000 vibrations per hour. The watch has been tested for saturation diving and is rated down to 600m
As with any timepiece, it’s important to understand what you’re buying and to make sure that the watch will work for you.
Dive watches can be an especially awkward watch purchase because of their size, weight and sometimes bright colors, which can make it hard to find one that is just right.
Seiko makes watches of all sizes and that span several price points, so you won’t have to look far to find one that fits your wrist and your budget.