We take a look at all the Seiko divers between €800 and €1,550 in order to help provide some direction. Trust us, there are a lot of choices now!

It used to be fairly easy to sort through the Seiko lineup. For sure, there were loads of options no matter the watch genre. When it came to Seiko divers, though, I always felt that there was a clear hierarchy. One began with the lowly SKX007 and worked up to the MM300. Along the way,  watches such as the Samurai, Sumo, or Shogun were available. Those days, it seems, are long gone and now there are loads of choices within that all-important entry-level luxury price range. We’re here to make sense of all that — until Seiko releases another diver!

The Ground Rules — Seiko Divers

The easiest thing to understand in this guide is that I chose all the Seiko divers with a list price of €800 to €1,550. Those prices are here in Germany, so your local market will differ. Still, spec and movement-wise, I think you’ll see a lot of similarities so the choices make sense. Also, I looked at all the models on offer today. That’s key because Seiko shakes things up frequently these days. Also, I have a hunch that one model is on its way out, but I’ve mentioned it anyhow. Finally, all of these models are Prospex pieces and I’ve not disqualified any pieces due to movement style. Let’s begin!

Seiko Sumo Prospex Diver

The Seiko Sumo

The Sumo is the least expensive watch in our Seiko divers guide at €830. However, this large stainless watch gives up nothing in this list unless you consider eschewing retro styling as a demerit. SPB101J1 (black) and SPB103J1 (green) were released in 2019 and received a lot of love. Yes, people were concerned about a nearly €200 uplift, but higher list prices are now the way at Seiko. For that extra amount, though, buyers receive a sapphire crystal and the uprated 6R35 automatic with 70 hours of power reserve. At 45mm, the 200 meter Sumo is not a small watch, but they fit well due to relatively short lugs. This was always the watch to buy if something like the MM300 was too expensive. There’s a familial resemblance there for a fraction of the price

Mike’s take: I’ve always liked the Sumo because it’s an original modern Seiko design. It looks like a Seiko, but it’s not trying to be retro. If you can pull off the size, this watch gives you almost all the capabilities of the other Seiko divers on this list. It’s hard to deny the Sumo.

The 62MAS Modern Reinterpretation — The Larger Case

Here’s a wild one. 2017 wasn’t so long ago, but the Seiko divers I’ll show you here are basically on their way out the door. Just a few years back, Seiko showed us a 62MAS reissue. Alongside that, they came out with a modern reinterpretation. These watches were known as SPB051 (black on bracelet) and 053 (blue on silicone). They brought the 50-hour power reserve 6R15 automatic, a 42.6mm diameter, sapphire crystal, and super hard coating to help prevent scratches to the 60s style stainless case. The controversy came with the handset, though. Seiko chose its modern arrow-shaped hour hand and dagger style minute hand. As mentioned, the watches above seem to be gone now, but the PADI-inspired SPB071 still remains for €900.

Seiko SPB071J1

Mike’s take: I have to admit that I never liked these watches. If you do, though, it marks a period, albeit a very brief one, where Seiko tried to mix pure retro with a modern handset. Most watch geeks were critical, but the original blue and black models reportedly sold quite well. Also, if I’m not mistaken, this is one of our Gerard’s favorite modern Seiko divers and he’s rarely wrong about anything. Just ask him! Lastly, it does seem that there are some good deals on these right now.

The 6159 Modern Reinterpretation — Larger Case

If 2017 was the year of the 62MAS, then 2018 was known for celebrating the famed 6159 dive watch. In addition to a high-priced limited edition reissue, we were also shown some new Seiko divers under the modern reinterpretation guise. These 44mm by 51mm steel divers echoed the modern 62MAS with the 6R15, sapphire crystal, and super hard case coating. From the beginning, Seiko gave us the SPB079 (black dial with blue bezel on silicone) for €900 and the SPB077 (all black on bracelet) for €1,050. Since that time, they’ve offered several limited editions, blue dial versions such as the SPB083 (blue dial and bezel with strap and bracelet) for €1,200 and a green-dialed SPB105 on a bracelet for €1,100 like you see above. These watches also use the modern handset, but the complaints were more muted. Perhaps they simply work better with the dial and case design.

Mike’s take: I like the so-called “MM200” so much that I bought one. It was the limited edition SBDC079 “Ginza Edition” with green dial and silver hands. These fit a small wrist well and their 13.1mm thickness make the MM300 seem like pure overkill. On the other hand, Seiko just dropped some smaller watches with this shape and more traditional hands. My guess is that these will go away now, but I think they’re future classics. If you like the size and the design, it’s hard to go wrong here.

The Willard

Back in 2019, Seiko gave us the SLA033. This was a high-end reissue of the 1970 reference 6105 diver worn by Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now as Captain Willard. Oddly, Seiko broke with tradition and did not give us modern reinterpretations at the same time. Roughly a year later, though, some brand new Seiko divers came in this wonderfully asymmetric shape. The amazing thing about these modern Willards is how closely they resemble the originals. The modern handset? Those have given way to historically correct straight hands with bluntly pointed tips. These watches are so close to their ancestors that I’d possibly regret a pricey SLA033 purchase. At 42.7mm by 13.2mm, they’re not little, but the cases are so “round” that they wear beautifully. There’s an olive drab SPB153 on rubber for €1,150, the black SPB151 on bracelet for €1,350, and a new limited blue SPB183 for €1,450. These steel watches use the 70 hour 6R35, have a sapphire crystal, an improved bracelet, and super hard case coating. The reception has been nothing short of fantastic.

Mike’s take: This is one of those releases that reminds me of the Turtle rerelease. I say that because these have been so well received. They’re classy in person and while we may moan about the old days of €600 Seiko divers, these bring loads of everyday value. If you like something other than a traditional case, but want a great “one watch”, it’s hard to go wrong here. I’d struggle to choose between black and green.

The Seiko Prospex SPB145

The 62MAS Modern Reinterpretation — Smaller Case

The next watch in our Seiko divers guide just might top the Willard as far as overall popularity. In what amounts to a last-second u-turn for the normally conservative company, Seiko issued a new take on the 62MAS just a few short years after its last attempt. Upon first glance, I thought these new watches were just an attempt to remedy the modern handset with more traditional indicators. That’s simply not the case, though, as these watches are smaller at just 40.5mm by 47.8mm with 13.2mm of thickness. The 200-meter steel divers also use the 6R35, bring a sapphire crystal, and contain super-hard coating. There’s the SPB143 (grey dial with the black bezel on bracelet) for €1,250, SPB145 (grey-brown dial with aged lume on bracelet — only at boutiques), SPB147 (brown-bronze dial with gilt accents on rubber) for €1,050, and the SPB149 (blue dial on a bracelet and limited to 5,500 pieces) for €1,350.

The Seiko Prospex SPB149


Mike’s take: Much like the Willard, these Seiko divers are so good that they make the high priced reissues seem like a questionable purchase. I really like these and even though the old “skin diver” case shape isn’t my favorite, it seems that the watch world wanted a no-frills classic diver from Seiko. Now, they’re available, affordable, and flying off of shelves. With great wearability and the possibility to dress them up or down help justify the widespread enthusiasm.

Seiko Prospex SPB185-187.SBS.001

The 6159 Modern Reinterpretation — Smaller Case

Well, if you thought that Seiko was finished this year with the Willard and the 62MAS, think again! Just last week we received word of a new pair of compelling Seiko Divers. And just like the 62MAS, these watches continue the downsizing trend of a recently released model. The new steel SPB187 (blue dial and black bezel on bracelet) for €1,250 and the SPB185 (black dial with metal bezel on bracelet) for €1,250 come in the form of the 6159 Modern Reinterpretation. However, they also dump the modern handset for the traditional look. Furthermore, at just 42mm in diameter and 12.5mm thick, they’re even more wearable than their 44m counterparts (or, likely soon-to-be predecessors). The stoplight “shovel” hand and nicely updated 6159 dial join a sapphire crystal, 6R35, and super-hard coating.

Mike’s take: It’s clear that all new Seiko divers in this range will receive the 6R35. I love all the choices we have but are they too much? Who cares because these look fantastic. This is easily my favorite Seiko case shape and this or the Willard would likely contend for my wallet. That metal bezel is really a unique look for Seiko. On the other hand, I’d consider waiting for additional colors because they’ll almost certainly come at some point soon.

Seiko Prospex SPB189-191J1.001

The Shogun — the newest of the Seiko divers

Seiko isn’t only focused on downsizing its recent releases with more new releases. No, the brand’s assault on the approachable high-end dive watch market was further bolstered last week with two new Seiko divers that hit the ceiling of our price range. This is pretty exciting stuff for Seiko fans because these are new Shogun models. The Shogun is a unique watch in the brand’s mid-range universe with its titanium case and 3 o’clock crown placement (ok, the 62MAS has this as well). With the new SPB189 (black dial with bronze and black bezel on bracelet) for €1,550 and SPB191 (white dial with a black bezel on silicone strap) for €1,350, these watches also add stunning ceramic bezels. A 43.5mm by 13.3mm case houses the 6R35 and a sapphire crystal while providing 200 meters of water resistance.

Seiko Prospex SPB189J1.003

Mike’s take: I’ve always viewed the Shogun as a more streamlined, classier version of the lower-priced Samurai. I’ve always found the cases a bit bulky and uncouth. All that changes with this release — especially that model with the bronze bezel. Sure, it’s pricey and titanium is a polarizing material, but this watch looks expensive to me. I also tend to harp on Seiko for relying too heavily on its past and, therefore, I should probably give original modern designs like the Shogun more credit.


S23629 / SBBN045

The Tuna Can — the only 300-meter diver on the list

If you’ve made it this far down our list of mid-range Seiko divers, you’re in for a surprise. Seiko revised — or reverted — its Tuna lineup in 2020 and that also means the most affordable variant: the Tuna Can. Several years back, Seiko gave the Tunas the modern handset. This year, that’s all been revoked and we get the hands that debuted in the 70s. Reference S23629 still uses the same tried and true 7C46 quartz (day and date function are included) while providing 300 meters of water resistance. The stainless watch with Diashield case treatment comes in at a hefty 47.7mm with 14.1mm thickness and brings a sapphire crystal. These watches use a traditional screw-in case versus the front loader construction of the 1000 meter Tunas. Still, though, this smaller design has been around for over 40 years and that makes it more than credible. €1,500 (on silicone) is your price of admission to this world of unique divers.

Pocket shot

Mike’s take: It’s hard to dislike a Seiko Tuna in any form and while some don’t consider this a real Tuna (ahem, Gerard), I disagree. This is a great watch and if you’re considering a Tuna that you can actually wear, this is really your only choice. These things are built like bank vaults, wonderfully finished, and bring one of the most respected quartz movements in the game. It is possibly not the best daily watch, but perhaps your lifestyle or occupation would beg to differ.


As you can see there are a lot of options for Seiko divers in the €800 to €1,550 range. In fact, if you look at where we were with Seiko just five short years ago, we have a veritable cornucopia of choices now globally. The best thing is that you cannot go wrong with any of these watches because they’re all well made, robust, and reliable. If you like retro, there are choices galore with these modern reinterpretations. If newer with new materials or original designs are your thing, head to the Shogun or Sumo. And finally, if toting a quartz wrist beast that was made for the deep is your gig, it’s Tuna Can time. Let us know which Seiko diver is your favorite by voting below and give us some feedback in the comments. Is there yet another model you’d like to see them release or are you satisfied?

Seiko Mid-Range Divers

    The best of the mid-range Seiko divers