It has a white dial, a blue bezel, and looks decidedly pretty.
At its core, that's about all I've got on the latest Prospex SPB "20MAS" version from Seiko. Announced today as part of a white and blue-themed four-watch collection in honor of Seiko's 140th Anniversary. It's a watch I have alked about. Like, a lot. Maybe even too much. But here we go.
Launched last year to great (even personal) fanfare, the Seiko Prospex "First Diver's Modern Re-Interpretation" is a 40.5mm spin on the brand's first dive watch, the 62MAS. Initially offered in four versions including one 5,500-unit limited edition (the blue dial SPB149), the 140th Anniversary limited edition (reference SPB213) sticks to the same format but offers a white dial and a lovely medium-blue bezel along with a not-so-limited production of 6,000 units.
As I alluded to above, there isn't much about the new "20MAS" (this nickname is in reference to the 2020 release year and the connection to the 62MAS) that I haven't already said in a previous post. For my wrist, it's the sweet spot in their lineup. It's not too big, it takes just about any strap, and it both looks great and manages to offer refinement without the premium price point attached to watches like the true 62MAS reissue, the SLA017.
Apart from the bezel and the dial, the rest remains unchanged from the SPB14X series of last year: 40.5mm steel case, 6R35 automatic movement, the drilled lugs, and a full steel bracelet. Speaking of the bezel, while the standard models have uncommon brushed steel inserts, the SPB213 appears to use a different material. I have reached out to Seiko to confirm what material has been used as it looks more smooth and shinier than the brushed finish of the SPB143 Update: Confirmed by Seiko – the SPB213 uses the same bezel construction as the SPB143, a brushed steel bezel and insert that has a surface hardening treatment. Compared to the greys, blacks, and browns of the original lineup, the SPB213 is in literally stark contrast, and while I do wish that the hands and markers had black surrounds, the dial looks really good in white. As for the bezel, the blue looks bright but not shiny which I think is a wise decision for the watch's straightforward and toolish vibe.
Pricing and production also seem like the product of some thoughtful consideration as not only is Seiko making 6,000 of these, the price is unchanged from what was established by the SPB143: $1,200. Seiko often tacks on a small premium for a limited-edition model, even when they aren't all that limited (the SPB149 was, for example, limited to 5,500 units and sold for $1,350).
As someone who doesn't typically put a lot of weight into limited editions, I like that Seiko opted for a larger run of these. Given the connection to the brand's 140th, an LE makes sense – but this way, more wrists will have a fighting chance of sporting one of these new blue/white divers and can do so without fretting any sort of increased cost over the (still hard to find) "20MAS" models from last year.
Yes, I want one.
Model: Prospex First Diver's Modern Re-Interpretation 140th Anniversary Limited Edition
Reference Number: SPB213
Case Material: Steel
Dial Color: White
Lume: Yes, markers and hands
Water Resistance: 200 meters
Strap/Bracelet: Steel bracelet
Caliber: Seiko 6R35
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Power Reserve: 70 hours
Frequency: 21,600 vph
Pricing & Availability
Price: $1,200 (RM 5,500)
Availability: June 2021
Limited Edition: 6000 pieces