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THE HISTORY OF SEIKO DIVERS WATCHES PROSPEX compilation CONTENTS

Progression of The Seiko Diver's Watch

Introduced in 1965,
Seiko's innovative diver's watch has been chosen by divers and adventurers globally.
Seiko's diving watch has become a global standard as a result 50 years of innovation.
What is the history behind this timepiece?

The letter that lead to the world's first professional diver's watch.

Everything started with a letter from a professional diver in Hiroshima prefecture of Japan. The diver explained that no watch was robust enough to withstand the stresses and strains he experienced when using a diving capsule and saturation diving techniques in depths greater than 300m. Answering this request, Seiko's engineers set to work and after years of research development, the world's first titanium cased diver's watch, the Professional Diver's 600m, was created.

1 History of The Seiko Diver's Watch

  • 1965

    Japan's first diver's watch

    Japan's first diver's watch was an automatic 150m Diver's. It was a self-winding 150m watch, with an outsized crown, rotating bezel with a special gasket and wide hands and dial markers. The launch of this model marked the start of Seiko's pursuit for ever greater reliability and safety. In 1966, the watch proved its reliability and precision on the 8th Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition.

  • 1968

    1968

    The Diver's 300m, with a 10-beat high precision automatic caliber

    This timepiece used a hi-beat caliber to assure higher precision. It was automatic, with manual winding capability, and featured stronger and brighter hands and dial markers.

  • 1975

    The world's first diver's watch with a titanium case, the Professional Diver's 600m

    The watch that changed the world's standards. It featured a two-layer case construction for greater security against shock and corrosion. The new accordion-style strap ensured ease of use by expanding and contracting as the divers' depth changed. Over 20 patents were granted to this world-leading timepiece.

  • 1978

    The Professional Diver's 600m, the world's first saturation diving watch featuring a quartz movement.

    In 1983, it performed perfectly at 1,062m below the surface aboard the Japanese Manned Research Submersible ‘SHINKAI 2000.'

  • 1982

    The world's first Hybrid Diver's 150m, with an alarm and a chronograph.

    The Hybrid Diver's 150m provided an alarm chronograph and a bilingual display. Also with incorporated electronic sounds, the alarm function could be used under water.

  • 1985

    The Quartz Diver's 200m which became a worldwide best seller

    The signature Seiko Diver's watch that achieved worldwide popularity, bringing Seiko's experience in this arena to a wider public. 200m water resistance provided secure timekeeping for recreational divers.

  • 1986

    The world's first Diver's 1000m with a ceramic outer case

    The Diver's 1000m was the first watch to use ceramic material for the outer case layer. The lightweight, corrosion resistant titanium case with a remarkable one-piece structure enabled this watch to withstand depths of 1,000 m.

  • 1990

    The world's first computerized diver's watch.

    Seiko's mastery of electronic watchmaking and long experience in diver's watches allowed the creation of this watch with water and depth sensors. It displayed diving time and depth.

  • 1992

    The world's first Kinetic Diver's 200m

    Combining the high precision of quartz with the security of no-battery-change technology, this watch was powered by the wearer's movement and provided extra security for the diver.

  • 1995

    The Diver's 200m, with an indicator for depth and a water temperature gauge

    The timepiece calculated water depth and dive time and also displayed stored data so that the diver could see an accurate dive log while still underwater. In addition, the watch featured advanced functions for everyday use, including a stopwatch, alarm and battery life indicator.

  • 1995

    The world's first Kinetic Diver's 200m with 24-hour hand

    A Kinetic diver's watch that had a GMT hand for world time use. The case was made from high-intensity titanium to enhance durability and shock resistance.

  • 1995

    The world's first Diver's 200m, with an automatic analog depth indicator

    When in full auto mode, the watch detected both the depth and pressure of the water and calculated dive information. Not only did it display current depth and time, the watch also displayed warning notifications and data from its memory.

  • 2000

    The world's first Nitrox multi-level diving computer watch

    Adding powerful features to the Diver's 100m, the Diving Computer Watch displayed a diving profile by recording the current depth level of the diver. Suitable for standard diving and also nitrox diving.

  • 2005

    The world's first Spring Drive Diver's 600m

    The watch features Seiko's unique Spring Drive caliber, using just a mainspring for power and delivering one-second-a-day accuracy. Using highly durable high-intensity titanium and a sapphire glass, this Professional Diver's watch was built for saturation diving to depths of 600m.

2 The legend gets passed on

With half a century of history and a proud of important innovation, Seiko's diver's watch have many times been chosen by adventurers who faced the challenges of the world's most harsh environments.

Reliability at the North and South Poles, and in every extreme environment

Since 1966, Seiko has been chosen four times to accompany Japanese Antarctic Research Expedition on its research missions. More recently, numerous adventurers and explorers have taken Seiko to the summit of Mount Everest and all the world's major peaks, proving the value of experience in making watches that are designed for every extreme.

Exceeding expectations of water resistance

In its quest for constant progress, Seiko has long co-operated with organizations in Japan, USA and elsewhere who could assist with testing its diver's watches in extreme conditions. In May 1983, two Professional Diver's 600m watches were affixed to the exterior hull of ‘SHINKAI 2000', the Japanese manned research submersible created by JAMSTEC (Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology). The watches were originally intended for use up to 600m, yet they withstood water pressure at a depth of 1,062m. The watches' legibility, precision and strength had passed the test with flying colors.

Courtesy: JAMSTEC

Water-Resistance:Air tightness

The result of 300m saturation diving: Pressure inside the watch case for brand other brands (A, B, C) and Seiko Professional Diver's

The vertical line shows the pressure inside the watch case and the horizontal line indicates the period of time.

After the dive, the air pressure inside the watch case gradually went up.

Seiko Professional diver's scored the best result and verified that it is strong enough to function even at great depths.

The helium problem, solved by engineering excellence

For saturation diver's watches, helium is a constant issue. The gas penetrates the gasket, and in some cases the difference in external and internal air pressure can cause the glass to break. While other companies seek to solve this by releasing helium through an escape valve, Seiko took a different direction and addressed the problem at its source, developing a case structure that is effectively impermeable to helium gas. This was the idea at the center of the creation of Seiko's Diver's Professional 600m in 1975.
In 1983, JAMSTEC conducted an impermeability test by submersing several diver's watches to 300m in a saturation diving. Seiko's Diver's Professional 600m proved to be up to ten times more impermeable to helium problem than the watches from other companies.The Seiko solution to the helium problem may have the hardest, but it proved to be the best.

Courtesy: JAMSTEC

The never-ending technical challenge of the deep sea environment.

The Professional Diver's 1000m was recently subjected to the most extreme test imaginable. Affixed to the exterior hull of ‘KAIKO 7000 II', a remotely operated undersea research vehicle, both mechanical and quartz versions of the Professional Diver's 1000m were taken down to the ocean's depths. All the watches functioned perfectly down to a depth of 3,000m.

Courtesy: JAMSTEC

3 Innovative Technology

Seiko has always dedicated great human and engineering resources to the creation of its diver's watches. Ever since the seven year development program that lead to the 1975 landmark 600m watch, Seiko's engineers have continued to develop technology that has made diving safer and easier for professional and recreational divers alike.
Through significant investment and innovation, the water resistance, shock resistance and gas impermeability of Seiko's diver's watches have proven to be the finest in the world. Seiko's innovative technology has resulted in the granting of many patents, including over 20 for the 1975 watch alone.

  • The world's first titanium diver's watch

    Seiko was the first watchmaker in the world to use titanium in a diver's watch. Titanium has very high resistance to corrosion and is about 40% lighter than steel.

  • Dials with enhanced legibility

    In a diver's watch, legibility is everything, and Seiko's unique dial design with outsized markers delivers greater visibility, even in near-zero light conditions.

  • The L-shaped gasket

    The shape and material of the L-shaped gasket were designed specifically to make the watch more water resistant and air gas tight.

  • Seiko's original torque control bezel.

    The uni-directional rotating bezel has 120 clicks, resulting in smooth and safe operation.

  • The world's first outer case protector structure.

    The world’s first two-layer case construction provides enhanced resistance to shock.

  • Movements to ensure legibility and reliability.

    Seiko's quartz movements have powerful torque that allows remarkably wide, long and legible watch hands, and the anti-magnetic properties of the movement and the case ensure precision.

  • The world's first accordion strap

    The accordion strap allows for expansion and contraction so that the watch remains tight on the wrist at all dive depths. It is a Seiko invention.

  • Screw down crown at 4 o'clock position

    Greater security is achieved by positioning the screw-lock crown at the 4 o'clock position.

4 The true diver's watch -Seiko's technology sets the global standard for all diver's watches.

Many watches bear the label diver's watch but only a small number of these timepieces can be considered fully functional in professional environment.

What is a true diver's watch?
From the introduction in 1975 of the Professional 600m, Seiko's engineers continued to innovate. The trust this watch gained extended far beyond the borders of Japan and, as a result, Seiko helped to establish the standard for diver's watches in the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and the Japanese Industrial Standards (JIS). During the development of the ISO standard, Seiko worked with the organization to adopt the standard to match the actual use of diver's watches in the deep sea. In 1996, again with Seiko's participation, ISO6425 with annex, about diver's watches for mixed gas diving, was issued.

5 Summation of the Professional Diver's

SBDB009

SBDB009

1

  • An outer case structure to protect the rotating bezel
  • DLC (Diamond-Like Carbon) that has been integrated into the outer case protector
  • Corrosion resistant high-intensity Titanium case
  • Impermeable structure that does not require a Helium gas escape valve

2

  • Spring Drive movement that proved durable in the harshest environments aside from sea such as Everest and space.
  • Lumibrite
  • Anti Nickel allergy
  • Anti magnetic JIS type 1
  • Screw case back

3

  • 120 minute click rotating bezel
  • The uni-directional rotation bezel
  • An original L-shape gasket

4

  • Safety assuring crown at 4 o'clock
  • Screw down crown

5

  • Accordion style silicone band