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Seiko Field Watch Review - Who’s the Best?

December 5, 2021

Field watches are pretty sporty, they go with several outfits. They also have quite the history – they were first created for the military, letting soldiers tell accurate time. Seiko offers quite a few of them. We’ve run through a couple, so you can pick up the best Seiko field watch.

The Watches - A Review

The SNK Collection - Seiko SNK809

The watch comes with a wide dial. Its bezel barely takes up any space, letting you easily read it. This is great as its face isn’t that big. It is only 1.45 inches (37 mm).  When it comes to field watches, you don’t want large cases as they get in the way.

The SNK collection comes with a range of colours. We think the SNK809 looks the best as it’s black. This makes it look chic as it rocks a NATO nylon strap, which is kind of rugged.

It isn’t very water-resistant. It can only handle 100 feet (30 meters). This is more than enough resistance to handle the rain. Usually, nylon gets wet. But as it’s NATO, it’s waterproof. What’s great about the strap is that it feels superb on your skin. Regular nylon is known to irritate, which it does not.

You also get a range of loops to latch into. It’s super easy to put-on, which helps if you’re out and about. Its band is not thick either. This is appreciated as lengthy straps make you sweat.

You don’t have to worry about its window getting beat up. It is Hardlex. The glass is Seiko’s version of mineral. However, it’s much tougher than it. It’s so good that other watch companies place it on their devices.

When you look at its face, you’ll see two rings telling the time. The outer one reads the minutes in an hour. Meanwhile, the inner one tells you what hour it is, in a 12-hour format. There is no luminous pigment on its markers. That being said, you’re getting lume on its hands. You’ll love to know that its face has an indigo backlight - you’ll be able to read it in the dimmest settings.

The timepiece is automatic. You don’t usually see automatic mechanisms in field watches as quartz movements are more reliable. Know that many of the brand’s field pieces are automatic. We don’t know the name of its specific mechanism. But as to how many jewels the Seiko automatic field watch has, there are 21.

No, they are not real. They are pieces of glass. The more present, the smoother your device would run.  What’s cool is that the watch has an exposed back. This lets you peak at its gears move. When you’re in the field and want to pass the time, you’re golden.

If you didn’t notice, there is a calendar on it. It’s in the three o'clock position, so you won’t be straining your neck. It doesn’t bold well with the display, though – they are both dark. We love that it tells the day as well as the date, the watch is pretty functional.

The SNZ Collection - Seiko SNZG15K1

You’re looking at another black watch. We think black field watches look the best as they’re the sleekest. The timepiece is automatic like the entry above. As mentioned, field watches traditionally don’t rock the mechanism, but Seiko places it in their pieces. This is why its back is exposed; you get to watch its gears move.  

The mechanism inside is the 7S36. This means it comes with 23 jewels and a 42-hour power reserve. We mentioned what jewels are, but we didn’t touch on power reserves. They are how long an automatic watch will last off your wrist. 39-40 hours is the standard, so 42 is good.

Not only does it come with a good automatic mechanism, but you’re getting superior water resistance. It can handle 330 feet (100 meters) underwater. It’s durable enough to handle snorkeling but not diving. Unlike the SNK809, you’re not getting a NATO strap. It rocks a regular Nylon band. If you remember, this means that material is not very waterproof, it’ll soak like a sponge.

As it doesn’t have a NATO strap, you’re going to be using a tang buckle to clip it into place. We’re not fans of the clasp as it takes long to maneuver. Depending on how big your wrist is, you might not be able to find a hole to pin into.

The SNZG15K1 is not very big. Its case stretches 1.61 inches (41 mm) across. Its dial is wide, though. You can easily tell the time. The fact that it has large Arabic numerals helps. The timepiece does not have luminous pigment on its markers. But it’s present on its hands. Seiko’s known for high-quality lume – you are getting LumiBrite. It is on the watches in the SNK collection too.

Speaking of the SNK collection, the SNZG15K1 also has an indigo backlight. If you’re going to snorkel with it, you’ll easily be able to read it underwater.

The fact that it has two rings to tell the time is appreciated. The outer one reads the hours in a day, in a 12-hour format. The inner one reads the hours in a day, in military time.

You’re met with Hardlex again. We’re not mad about it as the mineral is pretty tough. When you’re in the outdoors, it’ll stand by your side.

There is a calendar on it. It is in the 3 o'clock position, so you won’t be straining your neck. It reads the day as well as the date. We think it’s easy to read, the day and date are bolded well.

The SNE Collection - Seiko SNE329

Seiko’s SNE collection is known for solar-powered pieces. The sun powers the SNE329’s Japanese quartz. Their solar mechanisms are known to work great; they can be charged from all kinds of light sources, and they last a long time. If you’re wondering whether they can compete with Citizen’s Eco-drives, the answer’s yes!

As it’s battery-powered, you don’t get an exposed back. There aren’t any gears to gawk at.

When you’re out in the field, a solar-powered piece is exactly what you want. You won’t ever worry about changing batteries or having your watch off your wrist (automatic watches rely on your arm’s movement to turn their gears).

The SNE329 is a vision in blue. It’s dark blue, so it’s chic. It has a nylon strap like its counterparts. Unfortunately, it is not NATO – you already know that this means it soaks up water like a sponge and is not the smoothest on your skin. As it’s not NATO, you’ll be utilizing a tang buckle clasp.

Its face is kind of big. It stretches 1.69 inches (43 mm) across. If you have smaller hands, it’ll still fit you. But it’ll look awkward. The fact that its face is so big makes it easy to read. This is especially true as you get gigantic Arabic markers. There is no luminous pigment to them. Thankfully, there is lume on its hands. Yes, it has an indigo backlight.

The Seiko solar field watch can handle a good dunk underwater. You’re looking at a timepiece that’s resistant up to 330 feet (100 meters).

There is a calendar on it. It reads the day as well as the date. It’s bolded well.

The SRP Collection - Seiko SRP623 J1

The timepiece is a lighter blue, which contrasts with the pieces we mentioned so far. It is a Japanese automatic like most of them. Inside of it is the 4R36 mechanism. It results in 24 jewels and a 40-hour power reserve. As you know, the more jewels the better. 24 is above standard 17.

The watch doesn’t come with the most comfortable strap. It is regular nylon, so you’ll experience texturing. It is also not very water-proof. Speaking of water, how much can the SRP623 J1 handle? It’s good-to-go up-to 330 feet (100 meters).

You’ll be utilizing a tang-buckle clasp. If I were you, I’d switch it for a deployant type. The push-button variant is great. It works exactly as its name suggests.

Reading it outdoors is a breeze due to how big its markers are. They’re Arabic numerals and are full of lume. The pigment is on its hands too. The device is super bright in the darkest settings.

Its markers aren’t in an inner or outer ring. You’ll find the hours in a day regularly plastered on, in a 12-hour format. There is a minute ring, as you’d normally see around the border.

Like most of its siblings, it comes with an exposed back. As you’re getting 24 jewels between its gears, you’re getting quite the show. Something else its shares with them is the glass on its window. It is Hardlex.

Its face is big. It stretches 1.73 inches (44 mm) across. Its band isn’t large, thankfully.

You’ll see a calendar on it. It is in the 3 o'clock position and reads the day as well as the date.

Final Thoughts

Now that we’ve run through the best Seiko field watches, what do you think? We think the brand produces quality devices that don’t break the bank. The watch type has been around for a while and they do them well. As time goes by, we think they’ll add more field pieces to their collections. Along with Seiko, a citizen field watch is just as good, so maybe you should check them out.

Thomas Vanderlaan
When Thomas Vanderlaan was a child, the moment he learned about mechanical watches he was hooked. His first love being mechanical watches, he decided to pursue a career in engineering as he was entranced by the science behind its gears. As the years passed, his passion grew. Although he worked a hectic career as an automobile engineer, he’d always collect watches during his spare time.
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