What watch should you buy for your first automatic at an affordable level? My number one choice was always the sake of five. Three years ago i visited the city of philadelphia for the first time, and i made a video about the seiko five during the trip i discussed why it was my first choice and my top recommendation.
However, things have changed so much since then. The sake of five line has been rebranded revitalized and updated. So now i have owned a new generation of 2020 sega 5 for a few weeks. Is it still my top recommendation? Well, let’s, find out [, Music, ], okay, hi guys and welcome to the show – and yes, it’s turtle next season.
So i’m very, very happy anyway. Wristwatch check wearing the 809. My sake of five uh. Well, naturally, as we’re discussing the sake of five today, and it is on a wrist candy watch club uh purl on strap, i’ll leave the link down below, but i want to do something slightly different today.
I want to kind of use the i know this is a bit unorthodox but use the rating system as a platform in which for you to vote. So if you approve of the sake of five, the new sega fives and what seiko are doing with them, and the new releases give us a thumbs up and if you don’t give us a dislike so check back in a few weeks.
And we’ll see what the results are. Anyway, let’s, get into some history so to fully understand why it was my first choice. First of all, we have to understand the historical significance of the seiko five line initially released in 1963.
It coincided with a decade that would irrevocably change not only the watch world but horology and world history in general, by 1969 sega released the first quartz watch for commercial sale and the subsequent domino effect of this more accurate battery-powered technology over the traditional mechanical movements would Commence at the time, seiko was racing against the swiss to produce the first automatic powered mechanical chronograph and it is still hotly debated, who was actually first across the finishing line, some say seiko with the 6139 speed timer.
Interestingly, it was released under the seiko 5 moniker and not their higher end lines of watches. Was it deliberate to add more salt to the swiss wound? Well, it was a power move in fact, and it’s often overlooked, but when you begin to understand what the seiko 5 line originally was intended for it’s.
Undeniably, a bold statement you see, unlike the swiss rivals in this particular race, the seiko 5 was not a luxury collection of watches. The seiko 5 derives its name from the five key attributes that all sega fives must possess.
Now these following five features, we definitely take for granted these days, but it is interesting to see what uh seiko identified as needed to make a compelling watch enough for every day and to attract new enthusiasts so number one was it had to be automatic.
It had to have a day-date complication, which is something i’ve always said, is very, very handy on an everyday watch. It had to have a decent water resistance that obviously has increased over the years.
A recessed crown at four o’clock, although that has changed now. You do have sake of fives, with the three o’clock crown, but what’s important is that it is protected in some way and, lastly, a durable case and bracelet again slightly changed over the years, but definitely the cases has always Been fundamental seiko wanted to make all of these features available at an ultra, affordable level.
A difficult task to pull off and still is the goal, was to attract new customers and get more people into wearing watches by offering all of these features for less than anybody else. Seiko achieved this by becoming completely self-reliant, massive investments in infrastructure, to manufacture everything themselves and, of course, good old-fashioned, determined, hard work.
They had mastered and developed their own technology like the dflex, mainspring and deershock system that could compete with anything the swiss had to offer later. They would go on to be able to produce their own durable crystals with hard legs, a tougher proprietary alternative to the standard mineral glass.
At the time. Eventually, more innovations in their movements would also be added, like the magic lever system that could efficiently harness the bi-directional winding action of a watch, cutting down on extra components and, of course, most importantly, the cost to produce this deceptively simple, but highly effective, revolutionary winding system Would continue to be used to this very day, even in their higher end luxury grand seiko line by the time the quartz crisis would start to take its effect in the 1970s seiko had perfected super, affordable, mechanical watchmaking and thus strengthening their position immeasurably even today, few Brands can offer as much value for money without merely bugging in the court’s movement and calling it a day.
So the result of the success led to i mean simply an abundance of options. Uh complications, sizes genres – i mean it absolutely exploded. Now the problem with giving advice on what you should buy is always well people’s.
Tastes vary dramatically, but with the sake of five, i do believe there is something out there for everybody. Today, you can choose from affordable homages to luxury icons that are simply outside of your budget, or perhaps you just don’t want to spend the asking price for a blank power – 50 fathoms for example, but you want something sporty for the weekend.
In a similar style, perhaps maybe you need a classic looking dress watch for the occasional formal function that looks like a grand seiko or rolex datejust, but you know you will never wear it enough to justify spending thousands.
Maybe you are an aviation or history enthusiast and desire, a contemporary descendant of the watchers saker made for their infamous pilots in world war ii and spoilers. For my next modding project, you fancy a doctor, no james bond rolex submariner 6538, but if you’re like me, and don’t have a spare kidney or ducktales amounts of money to spend at auction.
I, for one, am certainly not going to mod a modern rolex to achieve this look and with so many great watch models to use as a base and endless third-party parts now available. You can create anything.
You want almost limitless combinations from just small upgrades and materials or a complete overhaul into something wild and eccentric. The truly great thing is here: you can make it yours to your exact tastes, unlike anybody else is out there.
The second five is a perfect place. To start on this modding journey, especially if you want to get into watchmaking yourself, most of the time it’s, only high-end luxury products that you have this level of customizability, i’ll, give you an example, my grandfather’S savile row suits or perdi shotguns or bespoke perfumes, this kind of thing as a lifelong fan of the skx line.
I could understand the indignation of psychoholics and watch enthusiasts felt with its inevitable discontinuation, and i have to say my reaction at the time was generally a bit different and positive compared to most.
If you remember my video i made about the kerfuffle at the time, i actually praised the move of it being superseded, not by a direct sequel but a psycho 5 alternative now, nicknamed, of course, the 5k x.
What annoyed people was the loss of it being able to be iso, certified the lack of screw down crown and it no longer being a professional 200 meter, water diver and rather a 100 meter. Water resistant, everyday watch but, as i pointed out, seiko have put out.
So many strong offerings in the entry to middle range prospects line of real capable divers was a new skx even needed. In fact, the releases in the prospects line have only increased since with endless options of new tuners mini turtles.
Samurais arnie’s. 62. Mass reissues, etc, etc. All reaffirming seiko as the king of affordable level certified professional divers, but i completely understand with my recent review, covering their illustrious 65 years of making dive watches people are passionate about it.
The 5kx is not actually a replacement of the skx. Despite the rather misleading nickname it has earned, it is in fact another power move by the brand that thinks 10 steps ahead for us not having the grand plan or that command and conquer bird’s eye view.
How are we actually to truly see what is next or even understand their reasoning until, of course, it happens and we are buying all the hot new releases like the over-excited watch fiends, we are so they took the case of the skx, which was one of the Key driving forces behind the skx’s; success as a base, because, even with its 42 millimeter diameter, this curvaceous rather modest lugged case works on so many different size wrists.
It’s, a clever move, and another observation i mentioned with my initial 5k x reaction video. Secondly, they already have the infrastructure to make a ton of them and to make them extremely well by this point, but most importantly affordably.
Lastly, as with the explosion and offerings in the ever-growing 5k x range, it’s, easy to modify seko made it intentionally compatible with the already existing aftermarket modding culture. Now, with a ton of variations available, they have made the watch more compelling by having a wide variety of pre-packaged products to choose from.
You could almost say it’s, ready modded, with a plethora of lively and vastly different options under subcategories of style. Sport, everyday, etc. If you know your history of seiko, you would have seen this change coming.
The cyclical upgrading of ever better movements and the eventual phasing out of their older ones has been going on since their first wristwatches. Everyone knows that the non-hacking and non-hand winding 7s26 was badly needing of that change.
The 4r36 is a logical step up and having hacking and manual wind in a watch that feels and fits like an skx is essentially always a refreshing change. So the whole point of the 5kx is to be that gateway drug into a new world of fun and enjoyment and hopefully collecting and just appreciating watches but at the same time, being a functional tool and delivering, in my opinion, exactly what they set out to do.
Back in 1963, while most of the watch industry is still stuck in their old ways and failing to connect to badly needed new generation of watch fans. Seiko is charging ahead. Look at their recent collaboration with capcom, with the street fighter series of watches, for example.
But if there is one thing, seiko without a shadow of a doubt, has that nearly all alternative brands at the entry level do not or lack in comparison, is its heritage and it’s. A list of achievements. Few brands can compete with the many world firsts industry, changing innovations, proprietary technologies, complete in-house production from start to finish, hundreds and, i really do mean hundreds of iconic watches under their belt, but also cinematic and, of course, pop culture stardom.
So, in my opinion, the 5kx is a success. If it’s, not your thing. Well, there still is a massive amount of older classic pre-superman logo, seiko fives to be discovered and it. However, there is a big downside, and that is the shift in value.
Unfortunately, it is just a part of natural inflation and the days of being able to buy a sake of five under a hundred dollars are perhaps coming to an end. But what do you think about this particular point? Do add your thoughts in the comments now a lot of people a little bit shocked at my choice of 5kx.
I absolutely adore this. I’m, still loving it, but it underlines an important point that not only um does it bring enjoyment to newcomers but established watch collectors like me who have been collecting uh for a little bit longer.
I’m, the one wearing it, so i really don’t. I don’t mind other people’s, opinions, but um yeah, it’s, been really really fun and that’s. What it’s all about guys anyway. Let me know your thoughts, queries comments, opinions all the rest of it down below.
Thank you so much for watching and i will catch you in the next one. Okay, ciao
Today I answer one of the most frequently asked questions on the channel: what should I buy for my first automatic watch? A few years ago I answered this question and recommended the Seiko 5. But in 2020, so much has changed with the Seiko 5 and the only way to see if it was still worthy of being my first choice was to spend a few weeks with their newest release.
Does the rich history, innovative design, super value for money and vast variety to choose from still apply to these new generations? Or is it game over for my favourite brand at the affordable $100 to $300 price point? Join me today to find out!
A special thank you to all the good Gentry who submitted photos of their Seiko 5 watches. Onwards and upwards!
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