It is easy to forget amid the current enthusiasm for mechanical timekeepers that quartz upended the Swiss watchmaking industry for three simple reasons: it is more accurate, reliable and less expensive.
Seiko, in its pursuit of perfection, mastered quartz and contributed to the crisis that engulfed Swiss watchmaking in the 1970s, a fact that is recalled to mind with the launch this week of a revival Quartz Diver, which first appeared 35 years ago in 1986.
That watch combined Seiko’s legendary 1975 Tuna design with the 1,000 meter water resistance required for saturation diving and a quartz movement that delivered an accuracy that no mechanical diver’s watch could match.
Like the original, this year’s anniversary recreation, in a limited run of 1,200 pieces, combines the design features of the 1975 mechanical and the 1986 quartz original, which made it such a hit with the professional diving community.
It has the 1,000m water and helium resistance that saturation diving requires thanks to a one-piece titanium case.
It’s graduated black to blue dial, with overtones of the deepest oceans, is protected by a zirconia ceramic bezel.
It goes on sale in July for £2,440.
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