Seiko SKX007 watch review

The Seiko SKX007 is arguably as iconic a dive watch as the Rolex Submariner. It’s a sturdy, good-looking and affordable tool watch.

Seiko SKX007 – Long Term Review

Famously worn by Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now, the Seiko SKX007 was a low-cost diver’s watch that has become a modern classic. Not so long ago, you could pick one up for £200, but they seem to now be discontinued and harder to get hold of at a reasonable price. In fact, you’ll have to search for an SKX007 on eBay to get the original version, and not the slightly less-cool more modern equivalent.

Case and Movement

Seiko’s low-end automatic movements are renowned for being bulletproof, and the Seiko SKX007 is fitted with the venerable 7S26. The downside of this movement is that it does not hack, so is hard to set to the exact time, and it does not support hand-winding, so you have to be active to keep it wound.

The case has an attractive design with curves that make it looks slimmer and a great-feeling bezel that is perhaps a bit stiff but with no back play. The crown is at 4 O’clock, so despite being chunky, it never digs into your wrist. Around the back is a solid case back with a proper engraving – but despite all this metal, the Seiko SKX007 is light and comfortable to wear.

Dial and Hands

The dial of the Seiko SKX007 is iconic, with the little sticks poking out of the 12, 6 and 9 O’clock markers. It’s supremely legible with a unique handset and crisp text. Seiko’s newer watches have multi-layered dials, but none of them are quite so perfectly balanced as this watch.

You get a day and date with the 7S26 movement in two languages, and although a bit fiddly to set, it does not unbalance the design. Overall, a great looking watch.

Bracelet and Clasp

The jubilee bracelet on the Seiko SKX007 looks – and feels – brilliant. It adds to that iconic look, and even though the fit against the case is not perfect, it still looks pretty cool. The downside is that although it feels nice on the wrist, the folded centre and end links mean the bracelet looks flimsy off the wrist, as you can see in the photos of the watch balanced on its side. I doubt the bracelet would last long in daily use – when it fails, I’ll probably switch to an aftermarket version with solid links. 

The clasp is a standard Seiko design. Perfectly good, secure when closed, and with a very generous five micro adjustment positions.

Seiko SKX007 Video Review

What I Like

  • The Seiko SKX007 is a real icon, and I adore its looks
  • This is one of the most comfortable watches I own, despite its solid feel
  • For the price I paid, the watch was a bargain considering how much wear it gets

What I Don’t Like

  • The bezel action is a little stiff
  • The bracelet looks flimsy off the wrist
  • The 7S26 movement lacks hacking and hand-winding

Seiko SKX007 – the WRUK Verdict

The Seiko SKX007 is a modern classic. I honestly think it is as iconic as a Rolex Submariner. I love how it looks; I love how it feels on the wrist and only wish it had a higher-end movement like the SRP series. When Seiko discontinued this line, it was a sad day, and if you get the chance to buy this watch or its Pepsi-bezelled sibling, the SKX009, you should jump at the chance.

Buy a Seiko SKX007

The only way to get a Seiko SKX007 these days is to scour eBay and hope for a bargain.

By Mike Richmond

Mike spends what little spare time he has writing for WRUK; and what little money he makes building up his collection of timepieces.

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