Hands-On With The 140th Anniversary Seiko SPB213

You’ve probably noticed that we have a bit of a thing for Seiko’s new SPB14X series of dive watches. We’ve written many, many words on the virtues of the SPB149 in particular, naming it one of our favorite watches of 2020. When Seiko announced 4 watches that would celebrate their 140th birthday, all with white and blue colorways, we were thrilled to see this chassis make another appearance in the reference SPB213. An order was placed post haste and just this this week, we had the watch in our hands, and it does not disappoint.


There’s not much to say about this watch that hasn’t been said before, but this rendition, with white dial and blue bezel, certainly adds a unique personality that clearly separates it from its siblings. Of course, the watch still wears amazingly well at 40.5mm in diameter and 47.8mm from lug to lug, and while the case is squat at 13.9mm in thickness, the tapered case balances out the proportions perfectly. 

But you already knew that. What is new here is the dial color, which borders on silver with the faintest of sunburst pattern applied. It’s not stark white, but it’s definitely in the ‘polar’ range of naming convention. The deep blue bezel has an inky appearance, nearing black much of the time. In the right light, a soft blue emerges through the glossy texture of the insert. Together, they create a rather beautiful experience that evolves depending on your setting.

My only gripe with the watch is the polished steel outlines used around the hour markers and hands. They blend with the white a bit too easily at times, where a darker application would have created a much more legible amount of contrast. It’s still easy to read, and the lume is excellent, but that one tweak would have pushed this watch to another level. In a perfect world, the watch would have been offered on a black rubber tropic strap in addition to the bracelet (which was quickly removed). 

Seiko is producing 6,000 examples of the SPB213 at an MSRP of $1,200. Inventory is appearing at the usual outlets so keep an eye out for yours if this particular colorway strikes your fancy. Seiko.

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Blake is a Wisconsin native who’s spent his professional life covering the people, products, and brands that make the watch world a little more interesting. Blake enjoys the practical elements that watches bring to everyday life, from modern Seiko to vintage Rolex. He is an avid writer and photographer with a penchant for cars, non-fiction literature, and home-built mechanical keyboards.