All too often, Seiko seems to reserve some of their coolest releases for markets outside of the United States. It can be frustrating and I’ve honestly tuned out a lot of recent Seiko releases because of it. But seeing these new Seiko Prospex SPB419, SPB421, and SPB423 U.S. Special Edition divers was a pleasant surprise. Inspired by cold water diving locations across the U.S., these new divers bring even more variety to the growing family of “1965 Diver’s Modern Reinterpretation” models. By this point, I think it’s clearly a collection of reissues that’s starting to overtake models like the Turtle and Sumo in popularity.
In the past I’ve felt that so many of these “special dial” releases can be brutally overdone. I think this is true across other series, like what we’d see with Cocktail Time and Save the Ocean models. But I think the subtle nature of these three U.S. Special Edition divers will make them a bit more universally appealing. I grew up in Florida, know nothing about ice diving, and frankly, it all sounds terrifying to me. The first one that stands out is the lighter SPB419 model, inspired by Michigan blue ice – a phenomenon that occurs as a result of the way sunlight is bouncing off the ice. This will probably be the “hit” model making waves through Instagram, if you ask me.
The SPB421 and SPB423 look a little more subtle, with dials inspired by moulins in Alaska. These two account for both the color of the ice viewed at depth (deep blue) and the ice that forms the structure itself (blue-gray). I’d find it harder to pick between these two, personally. The colors are more subdued and I think a little more versatile, especially the SPB421, which probably wears like a more standard deep-blue dial diver on the wrist. Still, I’m loving the almost-gray-snowflake kind of look Seiko brought with the SPB423.
Seiko U.S. Special Edition Diver Specs
- Case Diameter: 40.5mm
- Case Thickness: 13.2mm
- Lug to Lug: 47.6mm
- Case Material: Stainless steel with “super hard coating”
- Water Resistance: 200m
- Movement: Seiko 6R35
- Power Reserve: 70 hours
- Crystal: Sapphire
- Bracelet: Matching stainless steel
- Price: $1,250 USD
The Seiko Prospex SPB419, SPB421, and SPB423 divers are all powered by the 6R35 movement featuring 70 hours of power reserve. Pricing is also typical for modern Seiko models and these seem to fall under the brand’s “Seiko Luxe” family of products. While these are considered U.S.-exclusive special editions, they are not limited by any means. You can learn more about these new Prospex divers on the brand’s official site.
Michael Peñate is an American writer, photographer, and podcaster based in Seattle, Washington. His work typically focuses on the passage of time and the tools we use to connect with that very journey. From aviation to music and travel, his interests span a multitude of disciplines that often intersect with the world of watches – and the obsessive culture behind collecting them.