The popular Seiko ‘Tuna’ and ‘Baby Tuna’ watches aren’t ones that tend to make an appearance on Horologium, but as the temperature starts hitting above 30C here, the hot weather means that on weekends, my thoughts turn to resuming the wearing of my own Baby Tuna, the SRP653K1 (Prospex Automatic Diver 200m ‘Baby Tuna’ 4R36 Blue Special Edition), and in a bit of good timing, as I strapped my watch back on for the first time in months, so too were a new triumvirate of Prospex models announced.
Seiko USA has just released a new limited edition series of Baby Tunas with the unusual name of the ‘Prospex Street Series’. Unusual in that a dive watch is now ‘street’.
Meet the SNE533 (blue), SNE535 (green), and SNE537 (grey).
The marketing says that they are aimed at the ‘urban adventurer’. That’s not to say that the rest of us who own other Baby Tunas can’t also be urban adventurers, but in this instance it appears to refer to the three colour variants and schemes, which aren’t as dive oriented as their Tuna relations. The lack of marker luminosity on the textured unidirectional bezels reinforces this.
The use of textures extends to the dials and the silicone strap, which match texturally, but apart from the new colour/ texture combinations, these aren’t about anything dramatically new.
Lumibrite appears on the hands and hour markers, with the former in a matte finish. Atop the dial is anti-reflective mineral crystal.
Seiko has released a lot of different Baby Tunas using automatic, solar, and kinetic movements. This new series uses the Seiko Calibre V157 Solar Quartz movement.
The 200m water resistant shrouded stainless steel case is familiar one; for this series, the case is 47mm. For those unfamiliar with Baby Tunas, you may be wondering what is ‘Baby’ about this sort of sizing, but disregard the naming and disregard the numbers. I mentioned earlier that I own a Baby Tuna, which I bought without having tried it on. Which, given that it measures 50.2mm and is thick, was a risk. Not all sizing is the same, and in the case of the Baby Tuna core design, as a wearer, just throw your preconceptions out the window. The curve of the case back and basically the absence of lugs, means that it sits snug. My comfort zone is generally between 36mm – 43mm; a large range I know, but this will give you some idea of what I am accustomed to wearing. There are many 47mm watches which I just don’t feel comfortable wearing, because of the case shape and lugs, but my 50mm Tuna is one of my most comfortable watches. A 47mm sized Tuna should be wearable for anyone whose wrist comfort zone is similar to mine.
Overall, these new watches appear to be a solid new sub collection for the Prospex line, good for those who like Baby Tunas but who perhaps are looking for something less ‘dive-y’, and more versatile for day-to-day wear. These are clearly intended to be fashion-inspired but still solid and practical casual urban watches with a sporty angle to them. Will they find their way into the collections of dedicated Tuna people? Perhaps not, but with a hashtag of #DiscoverYourCity that comes along with the USD 450 price tag (available direct at this link), as well as the marketing video shown above, they are clear about their market.
[Photo credit : Seiko]