As a general rule, there are only a handful of watchmaking brands which can comfortably claim to be able to make both an iconic dress watch and an iconic tool watch competently and at price points far below the value and build quality of the timepieces offered. Among those brands, is Seiko.
Seiko is home to a myriad of collections but the two we are interested in discussing today are the elegant Presage Blue Enamel and the Prospex Golden Turtle. Two entirely different faces which represent the pinnacle of mass yet competently produced watches, affordable by the largest market segment possible.
Two Faces of a Brand: Seiko Presage Blue Enamel vs. Seiko Prospex Golden Turtle
While Seiko is ably represented by the many different variants of Seiko 5 watches, its two most compelling mid-tier (yet affordable) offerings happen to be the Presage and Prospex collections.
Seiko Presage watches are one of the best kept secrets in fine watchmaking. While they are not Grand Seikos, they represent incredible value for the effort and crafts which go into each Presage collection. Seiko Presage models offer unbeatable value in their price category and addition of hand-made enamel dials (and black Urushi lacquer dials) simply vanquish any argument against why a connoisseur shouldn’t own a Presage.
Introduced in 1965, the Prospex, Seiko’s innovative diver’s watch has been chosen by professionals. Case in point: Such is the Prospex’s reliability and precision that in 1966, it was the official tool watch for the 8th Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition. But what really takes the cake is that in 1975, the Prospex Professional Diver’s 600m became the world’s first diver’s watch with a titanium case, years ahead of the Swiss.
Given the immense history, provenance and high watchmaking details which go into each model, the question therefore isn’t one of choosing a Seiko Presage Blue Enamel vs. Enduring Seiko Prospex Golden Turtle but rather why one might need both for two different occasions.
The Elegant Face of Seiko: Ref. SPB069 Presage Blue Enamel Limited Edition of 1,500 Pieces
40.5mm x 12.4mm stainless steel Seiko Presage Blue Enamel Limited Edition is equipped with an AR-coated sapphire crystal, a display back, and is water resistant to 100 meters. Like its Baselworld 2017 predecessors, the new Blue Enamel Presage is driven by the automatic Seiko in-house caliber 6R15D with power reserve of 50 hours. A special gilded crescent on the rotor sets this Presage limited edition from the other variants in the collection.
Presage Blue Enamel Limited Edition Price US$1,100
The Enduring Face of Seiko: Ref. SRPC44 Prospex Golden Turtle
45mm x 13mm stainless steel gold PVD Seiko Prospex Golden Turtle is equipped with a Hardlex mineral crystal and is water resistant to 200 meters. The new Prospex Golden Turtle is driven by the automatic Seiko in-house caliber 4R36 with 41 hours power reserve. The professional divers watch has a highly legible black dial with gilded hands and Lumibrite indexes.
Prospex Golden Turtle Price TBC