Introducing the Seiko “Save the Ocean” Turtle Ref. SRPD21 and Samurai Ref. SRPD23

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Seiko recently released one new variant each to their incredibly popular and collectible “Samurai” and “Turtle” lines. The SRPD21 Turtle and SRPD23 Samurai are part of the highly capable Prospex series of professional dive watches, and these particular versions both include bright blue dials with intricate wave patterns (and a cameo appearance from the ultimate Alpha predator). These are both part of Seiko’s “Save the Ocean” series, with proceeds from sales benefitting the Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center, a non-profit dedicated to raising awareness of ways we can protect ocean habitats and marine life.


Seiko Prospex SRPD21 “Turtle”

  • Case Material: Stainless steel
  • Dial: Blue
  • Dimensions: 45mm
  • Crystal: Hardlex 
  • Water Resistance: 200 meters
  • Crown: Screw down
  • Movement: 4R36
  • Strap/bracelet: Bracelet
  • Price: $525
  • Expected Release: Available now

Seiko Prospex SRPD23 Samurai

  • Case Material: Stainless steel
  • Dial: Blue
  • Dimensions: 44mm
  • Crystal: Hardlex 
  • Water Resistance: 200 meters
  • Crown: Screw down
  • Movement: 4R35
  • Strap/bracelet: Bracelet
  • Price: $525
  • Expected Release: Available now

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Both the Turtle and Samurai should be familiar to faithful Worn & Wound readers. Over the past two to three years, these have essentially become key dive watch platforms for Seiko as they’ve continuously introduced new color variants. The case shape of each is distinctive in different ways. The Turtle is a large cushion case design that’s inspired by a popular Seiko reference from the 70s. The 45mm size is somewhat misleading, as the case flanks are heavily contoured, making the watch wear considerably smaller than the stated dimensions. It’s a big watch, but comfortable, and full of little optical illusions that make it appear “normal” on the wrist.

The Samurai takes a very different design approach. Also inspired by a reference from the Seiko back catalog, the SRPD23 is full of angles and has lugs that are squared off, creating a very different impression visually. In spite of the diameter of the Samurai being about a millimeter smaller than the turtle, I’ve found that it wears like a much larger watch due to the case’s unique geometry. That said, it’s not uncomfortable, and has a lot of wrist presence.

Now, let’s get into that dial. Lots of brands have been bringing out water themed blue dials recently. Omega’s newest Seamasters have dramatic laser cut “wave” dials. Oris has released a series of limited edition watches in a similar shade of blue as these new Seikos, and they also drive awareness to protecting the oceans. And of course this isn’t the first time Seiko has come up with a blue dial that’s meant to make the wearer think of the sea. This is quite possibly, however, the first time a shark has been suggested on a dial like this. Go ahead and pinch to zoom on the dial photos, and notice what appears to be a dorsal fin near the 8:00 marker on each watch. If you find yourself afraid to get back in the water after strapping one of these on, this could be why.

Both watches are available now on Seiko’s website and on Amazon (SRPD21 and SRPD23).

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Zach is a native of New Hampshire, and he has been interested in watches since the age of 13, when he walked into Macy’s and bought a gaudy, quartz, two-tone Citizen chronograph with his hard earned Bar Mitzvah money. It was lost in a move years ago, but he continues to hunt for a similar piece on eBay. Zach loves a wide variety of watches, but leans toward classic designs and proportions that have stood the test of time. He is currently obsessed with Grand Seiko.
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