Let me first say that I am a 'watch guy'. I have owned a Rolex Sub, a GMT Master II and a Charriol - so I am not afraid to drop some coin on a watch. I was itching for something new and I was willing to spend a few bucks. I wanted a diver watch and when I did some Google searches this Seiko watch popped up. I read the reviews and watched a few youtube videos on it and I figured 'why not give it a try'. It's only $200 bucks after all. Yesterday I recieved my Amazon package, and let me say this is one fabulous watch. It came in a simple box and pillow with an instruction booklet and a card to fill out to show ownership. The watch itself is very well made. Excellent brush finish on the steel case, with nice mirror finish on the sides. The bezel feels substantial and turns nicely with each 'clique'. The face is easy to read with nice sharp markers that glow in the dark nice and bright. The watch isn't too big and looks great on the wrist [I hate those big bulkly watches that people wear today]. The black rubber strap is really nice, it looks great and feels good on the wrist. Nothing about this watch feels cheap. This is a great watch.
How does it compare to a Rolex? It my opinion it is just as good and has a better warranty as well. A Rolex Sub will be 30X more expensive but I assure you it is not 30X better than this Seiko watch. This is a great timepiece.
I haven't worn a watch for many years. A change in my job requires me to note the time I start and stop certain tasks. Not wanting have to fumble my expensive and fragile cell phone out of the belt clip all the time I decided to look for a good timepiece.
Sure, everyone wants to wear a Rolex, Tag or Omega. I wanted a durable, simple watch with day, date and time. Very simply, if you want a substantial, well made, easy to read, very attractive watch, buy this one. I added the Seiko jubilee stainless steel bracelet (22mm pins, buy on Amazon) and you would have to look real close to see that that I am not wearing a Rolex Submariner.
It doesn't keep perfect time but who cares. So what I have to spend a moment adjusting the couple of minutes it has gained or lost over a few weeks. I'm not timing an Olympic event. Besides, If there are professional divers that wear watches like this one to protect their lives, then it's good enough for me.
Don't over think your buying decision, the Seiko SKX174 will bring a great sense of pride in ownership.
This is the same watch with a different dial and different hands as the iconic Seiko SKX007 and SKX009 watches. Rugged and reliable.
As the saying went among American troops deployed to Vietnam - "Seiko - they don't break-o !"
In fact these are the variation that is currently manufactured for the North American market....the 007 and the 'Pepsi" color scheme of the 009 are all "gray market" watches these days if you are buying them in the USA...The SKX is the only model meant for sales (among the SKXxxx line) that is sold through "normal" channels (by Authorized Seiko dealers with a Seiko warranty).
Mine keeps great time right out of the box. I wish I could say that about my beloved SKX007, but with enough trial and error, (maybe close to 50 tries) I finally got it to where the SKX173 was without needing any regulating (I know it's really just a matter or luck, but I can't help but wonder if Seiko knows that American consumers want MORE than their money's worth.
Still, my "173" just runs down very quickly when I take it off at night. It's supposed to have a 35-40 hour "reserve", but it stops after more like 6 hours, so it's going back and I'll hope for better luck next time (I would NOT hesitate to buy another one ....which is my plan!
BTW, the difference in the dials and the hands are neither better or worse - just slightly different. Easy enough to see just by looking at the product photos on Amazon. The movement and the case are identical!
very fun watch. only problem is that it dies within a day. i recmomend buying an automatic watch winder if you plan on alternating between watches. howver the watch here is really nice, very heavy. i had to change out the rubber strapps for a nato strap. just seemed a better suit. i wear this onmy right hand, and the crown does not get in the way. the Lume is very bright if light is shined on for 10 sec. the rotating bezel seems a little cheap sounding-but that may be how any bezel sounds? i havnt taken it out to sea just yet, but ill update when i do
I have not taken this watch off since I received it (a week ago). I love it. My buddy has the exact same model and I knew this is what I wanted. An so far it has not disappointed.... I did swap out the stock strap with the Art style Nylon watch band that you can find right here on amazon. With my work in the fire service I am diffidently looking for a strong durable long lasting product.... I think I have found it.
I bought this watch years ago on amazon. Other watches came and expired, but this one held magnificently. It dived with me, it climbed, it was my companion in lonely desert hikes, it worked countless hours while chopping wood, it ran three full Marathons and countless half ones, it has seen my kids grow up, diapers to college. I only changed straps, once they broke. I am at my third strap now. Long live this spartan and beautiful watch.
The SKX173 is a watch with quite a pedigree. For what it's worth, automatic Seiko divers are generally well liked in the watch collecting community because they are inexpensive but extremely well made and for me, aesthetically spot on.
From what I've read, the watch is nearly identical to the SKX007, the square numeral markers on the face being the main difference (the Skx007 has round ones). I put a stainless steel oyster bracelet and this watch looks fantastic!
If this is your first automatic watch, please read up on them a bit before you buy one, as the fact that they only have a 40 hour power reserve and this can frustrate some people. Better yet, pick up a watch winder and you won't have to worry about it stopping.
This watch is going to be my go-to model until I can afford an Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean in about a hundred years.
Love this watch!! The styling is typical Seiko which, to me, is quite fashionable and appealing yet classic Seiko practicality. I really appreciate that the display includes both day of the week in addition to day of the month, which most watches do not include. The band is made of a very sturdy yet comfortable polyurethane. A perfect watch for everyday wear. I'm very pleased with this purchase.
Awesome watch. Feels solid and looks great. The first thing I did was verify that this was the real deal and not a "Feiko". Passed all tests and has a manufacture date of 3 months prior to purchase. The stock band is not that comfortable. I swapped it out for a NATO style strap immediately. This made a huge improvement in comfort and looks. The automatic movement (no battery) consistently loses 8-10 seconds per day. Not a huge deal for me, I just set it a little bit fast and reset it every few weeks. However, if you want a nuts-on accurate watch that doesn't need to be worn to stay wound up, this is not for you. The second hand chugs along at 6 ticks/second. The Lumibrite hands and hour markings glow bright green when fully charged up.
I have several Japanese automatic diving watches. I'm writing this review to compare the pluses and minuses of this versus the others.
The Seiko 173 is a classic of design and function. However, I rate it 4 vs. 5 stars because I later purchased a vintage restored Seiko 6309 which I like even better and that ran under $150.
The vintage 6309 has 17 jewels vs. 21, but the same functions. Also: The bezel rotates both ways on the vintage watch (60 clicks instead of 120) which makes it more useful and convenient as a kitchen timer (which I use it for) ... though likely less useful for actually diving. The only downside of my particular vintage watch is that it tends to gain a little more time than the new watch. The vintage watch feels slightly better to wear for some reason as well.
The rubber band on the 173 is extremely difficult to get off ... buy a better quality spring bar tool to do it. I have it on an aftermarket oyster bracelet from Amazon that runs about $50 and that's great.
I have the vintage watch on a black Panerai band with white stitching, which really suits these watches very well and they are not expensive.
My other watches are:
An Invicta (a bit cluttered and derivative of Rolex in terms of design, but great Seiko 24 jewel movement that hand winds and hacks). I'm a lefty so I wear these on the wrong hand ... and the Seiko movement is less efficient winding crown up than crown down, so the hand winding is nice. And my Invicta is extremely accurate.
A Orient Blue Ray ... which splits the difference between the Rolex Submariner-look of Invictas and the brighter, bolder hands and markers of the Seiko. The bracelet on the Orient is very good out of the box. At about $150, that's probably the one to get if you could get just one. It also dresses up for the office best.
The Seiko 173 is very accurate (which is to say just fine) though not as accurate as either the Invicta or Orient, which are extremely accurate. Physically, it's more substantial than either of those by a little bit. I have medium wrists and it does sit higher than either the Invicta or Orient. The bezel on the Seiko is nicely damped, but it sits a little higher (easier to use for an actual person diving) and tends to get knocked off center.
To sum it up, the Seiko has the history ... it's directly descended from a model that is decades old. I've seen two veterans who are still wearing their 20 and 30-year old pieces. But you may want to consider an actual vintage watch if that appeals to you the most.