Back in March of 2017 Seiko released the SRPB11 and SRPB09, Turtle and Samurai variants of what would affectionately come to be known as the “Blue Lagoon” in the ever-popular Prospex diving line. The instant I saw the Blue Lagoon I wanted the Turtle version. That vibrant blue dial, subtle yellow index highlights, and gorgeous two-tone blue bezel – well – let’s just say that it had me at hello! At the time, financially I wasn’t in a position to spend $500 on a watch, and so it remained just out of reach. Of course I came to regret the decision not to purchase one as new ones now regularly trade for well over MSRP online. Opportunity lost. Or was it?
At Baselworld 2018 Seiko announced a new partnership with Fabien Cousteau, grandson of famed adventurer Jacques Cousteau. The first watch to come about as a result of that partnership is the new Prospex “Save The Ocean” special edition, again in both a Turtle (SRPC91K1) and Samurai (SRPC93K1) variant. This time there was no agonizing over a purchase decision. The minute they became available in Seiko retailers I snapped up the Samurai. Why not the Turtle you ask? Let’s just say that I’ve got my bases covered since my wonderful wife bought me a Turtle Pepsi bezel for my birthday in December. No, you can’t have her.
The SRPC93 comes in the now-familiar 44mm angular case that the Samurai is known for. Funny thing is, the original Samurai from the mid-2000s was actually named for its samurai sword-shaped hands which were not included in the Blue Lagoon, nor have they been used here. Instead we find the familiar “rocket” hands made famous by the Seiko Monster. It matters little though, as the trademark of the new Samurai is surely those angular and aggressive lugs.
Jumping out right away is the bi-color bezel, again presenting two distinct hues of blue. However, instead of the lighter sea foam blue found on the Blue Lagoon, the first 15 minutes of the bezel on the Save The Ocean are distinguished by a much darker blue, while the remaining 45 minutes transition to an almost navy blue. I haven’t decided if I like the bezel insert color treatment on the Save The Ocean more or less than the Blue Lagoon. They’re both very distinctive. What I do like more on the Save The Ocean is the color of the bezel itself. Rather than matching the raw stainless steel of the case and bracelet, the bezel edges are treated to a deep gun metal grey. It’s amazing how a simple color change like this can transform the look and feel of a watch. The large and thick knurled crown is also graced with that same gun metal grey color. It’s a fantastic effect that I’d like to see carried over to other Prospex offerings in the future.
The dial is where the Save The Ocean really stands head and shoulders above the Blue Lagoon. While the Blue Lagoon’s blue sun ray dial is indeed very attractive, the Save The Ocean boldly takes it to the next level. The applied markers sit atop a stunning wave pattern of shimmering blue at the top, fading to black near the bottom of the dial, not unlike the color of the ocean the deeper you descend into the depths. It’s one of the best executed gradient dials I’ve ever come across, and I find myself constantly lifting my wrist just to gaze at it. The horizontal waves are not symmetric, but rather seem to rise and fall randomly as they cross the dial and are said to be inspired by the body of the blue whale.
As is customary on all Seiko Prospex divers the indices, hands, and bezel pip are all filled with Seiko’s proprietary LumiBrite luminescent material that seems to glow forever. If I charge the Save The Ocean before hitting the pillow for the night, I can be guaranteed that I’ll be able to easily tell the time until that nasty alarm goes off in the morning. Powering the SRPC93 is the familiar date-only 4R35 beating at 21,600 vibrations per hour and storing enough energy to power the hands for 41 hours. While Seiko tends to ship their Turtle versions on rubber straps, the Samurai variants inevitably come on a nice three-link stainless steel bracelet with a two stage safety clasp. While not up to Rolex standards, at this price point you’ll be hard pressed to find a nicer bracelet.
The watch is water resistant to 200 meters and retails for $525. A portion of all proceeds from sales will go to Fabien Cousteau’s Ocean Learning Center. It’s technically a limited edition, though what that means we don’t really know since Seiko hasn’t announced any production numbers. All I can tell you is this. If you’re smitten, buy now. Undoubtedly both variants of the Save The Ocean will be extremely popular, so don’t bet on either hanging around in authorized dealers or on the Seiko USA website for very long. seikousa.com
- Brand & Model: Seiko Prospex SRPC93 “Save The Ocean” Limited Edition
- Price: $525
- Who we think it might be for: If you like dive watches, and you dig the color blue, you’ll want this watch.
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen? You already know the answer to that question.
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: Don’t touch a thing. It’s perfect.
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: That dial obviously!
Technical Specifications from Seiko
- Material: Stainless steel
- Size: 44m x 13.34mm, 48mm lug-to-lug
- Weight: 183 grams with factory bracelet
- Crystal: Hardlex
- Case Back: Solid, screw-down
- Water Resistance: 200m
- Inter-lug Width: 22mm
- MOVEMENT: Seiko 4R35
- Functions: Time and date with central seconds hand
- Beats Per Hour: 21,600
- Power Reserve: 41 Hours
- Material: Stainless Steel
- Clasp: Two-Stage Safety Deployant