Seiko Samurai Save The Ocean
When I reached out to a friend to check out a Samurai, I was intrigued when he said he was sending the Seiko Samurai Save The Ocean. For those not familiar, Seiko has been releasing a few models with the Save The Ocean badge, and from talking to a few friends and the social media posts I made once this watch arrived, this is a VERY popular model of the Samurai. *Spoiler-I am not a fan of this Seiko, especially the wave dial. Now, the reason I spoiled that already instead of putting that info at the end of the review, is because I know how many Seiko fanatics are out there and I want everyone to know I tried to be as objective as possible with this watch. I try to be as objective as possible with every watch, but I included this caveat at the beginning of the review because I am fully aware of the backlash I may receive.
Seiko Samurai Save The Ocean Specifications:
Price: Full Retail $525 (Sales and deals vary, lowest price I found currently is $315 through Kohls and $319 through Amazon.)
So let me get this out of the way. I have long been a Seiko fan, and do not consider myself a snob. I have reviewed countless microbrand watches on here that are at this price point or less and have given them praise and when it comes to build quality and finish, Seiko is above most of them. Admittedly, I haven’t owned a Seiko in quite some time. There are models I do like, but I never end up buying one. I have owned countless Seiko models in the past including but not limited to the Monster, baby Monster, a Shogun, and SKX, a Sawtooth and even one of the original Samurai’s going back over 10 years ago now. The build quality is not in question, the design just doesn’t do it for me these days. With all that out of the way, let’s discuss why the Samurai is still a really great watch and still a good value in the watch world today.
As I stated in the video, the Seiko Save the Ocean Samurai is a regular Samurai in every way, same blocky angled case, same bracelet, same 4R35 movement, and same bezel and crown. The difference here is the ocean wave patterned dial that gets darker as it reaches the bottom, much like the ocean itself. Now, I am just not a fan of this dial. I do not find it appealing myself, but I know many that absolutely do. I will say, Seiko, as always, makes fantastic dials, even with a watch that sells for around $350 regularly. Take a look below.
Just look at that picture. Applied markers, full satin brushed hands, everything is just so bold, crisp and easy to read. The dial jumps out at you and while this particular design is not my style, it is easy to see the appeal. The same goes for the case. This is a unique case design which is original to Seiko. The case is blocky but not exactly thick, has the hard angles and the lugs have a sharp downward curve. A great feature is the drilled lugs, which make getting the bracelet or strap off easily.
The knurled crown and bezel of the Seiko Save the Ocean Samurai are coated in black PVD, giving a slight bit of contrast against the brushed stainless steel of the case and bracelet. The crown is easy to grip and screws down smoothly and securely to the case and is protected by moderate size crown guards. The bezel action is superb, and while I have felt better in higher end watches; if all bezels were like this, I think it would be safe to assume no one would ever complain about bezel action again.
The case back is pretty much standard fare here for many of the Seiko dive watch models in the $500 and under price and as always, this is a damn nice stamped case back and while it does not say Save the Ocean anywhere on the watch, it is marked Special Edition.
I think my biggest area of disappointed with Seikos such as these comes down to the bracelet. I have just never been a fan of Seiko bracelets like these and they really haven’t changed at all in the past 15 years either. While the end links angle down and fits the lugs perfectly, the rest of the bracelet just leaves me cold. I especially wish they would update the dive extension portion of the clasp. While I realize it is strictly for function, it looks ugly and I do not like the way it operates at all. Fortunately, you can always put the Seiko Samurai save the Ocean on a nice rubber strap like a Crafter Blue or Isofrane or get a nicer bracelet from Strapcode.
If the Samurai looks a little tight on me in the wrist pictures, it is. This was of course on loan from a friend and fortunately just fit me, but I did not have any extra links and moved the pin in the clasp to the last hole to just fit me. As such, it does look like the crown is digging into the back of my hand-which it is. For reference, I have a 7 1/2 inch wrist.
Of course, when it comes to Lume, Seiko has never been a slouch in that department. This Seiko Samurai Save the Ocean is no different. This watch in the dark is an absolute torch.
I am fully aware that this is probably not the review most were expecting but as always, I am real and honest. While this particular Seiko is not for me, I can see why it is loved by so many, especially at the prices that you can get one for. Many people have multiple variations of the Samurai, as well as the Turtle, and the latter would be more to my liking, especially the newly released Grey Dawn version, which is a Europe limited edition with a grey sunray dial and orange accents. Unfortunately, they are a little on the pricey side with being limited but I am going to try my best to get my hands on one of them for a full review. Back to the Seiko Samurai Save the Ocean, it is a very well made watch with great finishing and although I wish these Seikos had sapphire instead of the Hardlex crystal, this example I have in hand has obviously been worn and I can not see a mark on the crystal at all. The reality is not all watches are for everyone but I am still glad I had the opportunity to check this one out and share my thoughts with all of you. I know many will differ with my opinions, (remember, they are just my opinions, like any review), but I hope you take it for what it is. One mans opinion.
Thank you for reading, I look forward to your comments below.