Seiko has really been focused on expanding the Presage line since its introduction to the United States, and at Baselworld this year the Japanese giant added two new additions to the series that should not disappoint. Showcasing Seiko’s commitment to fine craftsmanship, refs. SPB073 and SPB075 highlight Seiko’s long-held mastery of working with enamel, presenting both of these watches with dials rendered in stunning blue enamel.The technical name of the material here is Shippo enamel. It differs from porcelain enamel in the way it’s polished after firing. These dials are meticulously crafted by specialist manufacturer Ando Cloisonne in Nagoya, where craftsman Wataru Totani paints the glaze by hand onto the surface of the dial (worth noting is that he uses a lead-free glaze specially developed for use in these watches). The dial is then fired at 800 degrees Celsius. This process is repeated several times to ensure the evenness of the enamel. Finally, the dial is polished to bring out the delicate pattern and smooth surface—an incredibly difficult thing to achieve on a dial around 1mm thick.
Reference SPB073 uses Seiko’s 6R27 caliber, which beats at 28,800 bph and boasts 45 hours of power reserve. This movement includes a calendar sub-dial at six o’clock and a power reserve indicator at nine. The second of the pair, the SPB075, runs the well-known 6R15 movement with a slightly lower 21,600 bph and 50 hours of power reserve.Both models are housed in modestly sized cases (40mm for the SPB075 and a slightly larger 40.6mm for the SPB073) with sapphire crystals front and rear. Both watches come mounted on a crocodile leather strap.
These are limited edition models with 2,500 of each to be made. The SPB073 has a price tag of $1,600 and the SPB075 comes in at $1,400—a solid value and another example of how Seiko continues to bring high-end traditional craftsmanship to their mid-range watches. Seiko