It’s no secret that Seiko has earned the coveted title of the coolest and most popular budget timepiece there’s ever been. Little wonder Seiko watches are any collector’s slice of paradise. Aside from their budget price tag, they seem to transcend class and everyone loves them.
It’s often rumoured that Seiko (or the Seiko Quartz 6431-6030, to be quite precise) was Steve Jobs’ favourite watch. And he’s far from being the only moneyed person to don Seiko watches.
Big screen’s Terminator himself Arnold Schwarzenegger wore Seiko divers watch H558-5000 in most of his blockbuster films, including The Running Man, Predator, and Commando.
People from all walks of life have clad in the evergreen Seiko 5, from Joe Bloggs and trendsetters to politicians and celebrities. This begs the question: why are Seiko watches so popular? Wonder no more - we’ve pieced together this article to help explain why they’re wildly loved.
The Riveting Power of Simplicity
Let’s circle back to our beloved Apple cofounder, Steve Jobs, for this one. The late billionaire design prodigy was almost fanatically obsessed with aesthetic simplicity. His prowess and passion as an aesthete are still unrivalled in the product design world.
His sense of fashion and style reflected this, as well. He wore a black turtleneck teamed up with sand-blasted Levi’s jeans and a pair of trusty New Balance shoes. The watch he donned in his early career — Seiko Quartz 6431-6030 — reflected this essence of simplicity, too.
And that’s exactly the most alluring thing about most Seiko watches: their simplicity. They’re no-frills timepieces that almost miraculously create a vintage and luxury look on your wrist. For Steve Jobs, the watch sported a white dial, black round design, and simple hands clocking past Arabic numerals.
A watch can’t get more pared-down than that, yet it worked like a charm!
Innovation is the Name of the Game
Seiko has a rich, storied, and colourful legacy that can be traced back to Kintaro Hattori’s Ginza clock shop in 1882. Although the watchmaker has become almost synonymous with budget watches, Seiko has actually differentiated itself in the crowded market using innovation.
Unlike Swiss watch brands that are obsessed with luxury and precision, Seiko has focused heavily on innovation.
To get the picture, here are some of Seiko’s breakthroughs and innovations that have revolutionized the watch industry:● Magic lever – Seiko introduced this nifty mechanism in its 1959 Gyro Marvel, helping boost the winding efficiency and watch accuracy
● Automatic chronograph – Though now primarily associated with the speed timer in Seiko 5 sports, the innovation behind this is Seiko Caliber 6139 “military” dial movement. This essentially kicked off the quartz watch movement.
● Kinetic movement – A mechanism that sits between quartz and mechanical watch, kinetic movement keeps time more accurately and for longer. It has changed the face of watchmaking since its introduction in 1986.
● Spring Drive movement – This impressive movement tech was introduced in 1999 by Seiko
● Astron GPS Solar – Introduced in 2012, this nifty piece of engineering allows the watch to automatically readjust the time according to the wearer’s location.
Since then Seiko has continued with this tradition steep in innovation, making their watches more popular than ever. They can be seen in all of their timepieces, including Seiko divers watches.
Affordable Meets Quality
Seiko watches are not only hinged on innovation but are also high quality and surprisingly pocket-friendly. Not just that; every Seiko divers watch is crafted to be top-notch regardless of the price tag.
Whether you get a £5,000 Grand Seiko, or a £2,500 Marinemaster, or a £250 Seiko 5, every timepiece is crafted by expert watchmakers with a great sense of pride and a keen eye for detail.
In most Seiko divers watches, you’ll find top-grade 316L stainless steel that’s commonly incorporated into pressure-sensitive parts of most marine gadgets and applications. DiaShield coating based on physical vapour deposition technology comes standard across Seiko’s watch range.
With all these features, advanced technology, and intelligent design, buying a Seiko watch can be reassuring. After all, you’re getting more bang for your quid.
Seiko Watches Offer Impressive Value Retention
Again, Seiko watches have become collectors’ most prized gems. Even popular models like Seiko 5, Alpinist, Turtle, and Marinemaster have fairly impressive value retention. This can be seen on both pre-owned and second-hand markets — and even black markets...
If you choose to resell a new Seiko watch, you may only lose around 20 per cent of the till price. When it comes to limited and vintage Seiko watches, this is where the real magic happens.
Strong Service and Parts Support
It’s always heartwarming to be reassured that your watch can be serviced or repaired easily, quickly, and cost-effectively. There are many aftermarket makers that provide parts and repair service for almost every Seiko watch out there, so are also a watch modders dream.
Wrapping up …
When all’s said and done, Seiko watches are a true horological heritage. The watch brand has been around for more than a century and has established itself over the decades as the innovation champion.