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SKX173 VS SKX007 - (ALMOST) IDENTICAL TWINS [2020 update]

It’s only right that you’re curious about the SKX173 vs SKX007 – they look similar. You probably didn’t know this, but the SKX173 is the international version of the SKX007. We’ve discussed how different they are below.

SKX173 VS SKX007

The Watches – At a Glance

To give you an idea of how similar they are, we created a summary of their specs.

Preview
SKX173
Seiko Men's SKX173 Stainless Steel and Black Polyurethane Automatic Dive Watch
SKX007
Seiko SKX007J1 Analog Japanese-Automatic Black Rubber Diver's Watch
Water resistance
660 feet (200 meters)
660 feet (200 meters)
Crystal
Hardlex
Hardlex
Movement
Japanese automatic
Japanese automatic
Strap
Rubber
Rubber
Case (size)
1.65 inches (42 mm)
1.65 inches (42 mm)
Case
Stainless steel
Stainless steel
Bezel
Stainless steel
Stainless steel
SKX173
Preview
Seiko Men's SKX173 Stainless Steel and Black Polyurethane Automatic Dive Watch
Water resistance
660 feet (200 meters)
Crystal
Hardlex
Movement
Japanese automatic
Strap
Rubber
Case (size)
1.65 inches (42 mm)
Case
Stainless steel
Bezel
Stainless steel
More Information
SKX007
Preview
Seiko SKX007J1 Analog Japanese-Automatic Black Rubber Diver's Watch
Water resistance
660 feet (200 meters)
Crystal
Hardlex
Movement
Japanese automatic
Strap
Rubber
Case (size)
1.65 inches (42 mm)
Case
Stainless steel
Bezel
Stainless steel
More Information
the Seiko twins

The Watch - A Review

Design & Comfort

The two look like the Rolex Submariner. This is something Seiko does with a lot of their pieces. They’re similar to the Swiss timepiece as they have black and silver faces, rhomboid hour markers, and toothed bezels. Considering that the SKX173 and SKX007 aren’t that expensive, this is great.

There are variants of the two. The ones we’re reviewing come with rubber straps. They make them look less formal, but the material is waterproof. The thing about rubber is that it causes you to sweat – especially if there is a lot of it on your wrist.

The timepieces aren’t that big. Their cases are both 1.65 inches (42 mm). If you’ve read our reviews before, you’d know that the size is perfect for all kinds of wrists. We aren’t sure about the SKX173, but the SKX007 comes in at 3.17 ounces (89.8 grams). Although it won’t weigh you down, having more heft would make it feel more premium.

Unfortunately, they don’t come with skeleton backs. They are when a watch’s rear is clear, letting you peek at its gears moving. The feature not only makes a timepiece more premium, but it’s a good way to entertain yourself.

Dial & Case

The SKX007 and SKX173 are easy to read. They come with pitch-black displays, with large white markers. If you know anything about Seiko, it’s that they love LumiBrite. The pigment glows for 3-5 hours, which is 10 times longer than the standard. The luminous pigment is all over their hour markings. It’s even on their hands. What’s great about the lume is that all kinds of light sources charge it.

The two have calendars on their displays. We’re happy that they’re in the 3 o'clock position as some Seiko pieces have them at awkward angles. The font on them is also easy to read.

The shape of their hour markers is not identical. The SKX173 has more rectangular ones. Its watch hands are like this too. We aren’t a fan of how they look.

If you’ve worn watches with large crowns before, you’d know how often they poke your wrist. Thankfully, the ones on the SKX173 and SKX007 are in the 4 o'clock position. They are also ribbed, making them easier to use.

Remember how we said the two have toothed bezels? They make the timepieces look cool, but they don’t have a purpose. If we had to say, we’d say they make gripping easier.

Crystal

Seiko’s a huge fan of hardlex crystals.  It’s their version of mineral. It’s more resistant than regular mineral but is not as tough as sapphire. You’ll usually see sapphire on their more expensive devices.

Water Resistance

The SKX007 and SKX173 are pretty water-resistant. They can handle 660 feet (200 meters) underwater. Yes, you can dive with them. They’re ISO 6425 certified. Since their straps are rubber, they’re waterproof. Some variants come with stainless steel bracelets. Stainless steel is waterproof as well.

As they have a lot of LumiBrite on their display, you can easily read them when diving.

The two have rotating bezels. They tick as they turn, acting as timers. In the pool, they are useful as you can time your laps.

Movement

The watches are both automatic. They come with the 7S26 movement. It’s a work-horse, providing a 40-hour power reserve and 21 jewels in-between gears. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with self-winding or hacking. The two features are popular in the industry, so we’re disappointed that they’re not included.

Let’s talk about their power reserve and jewels. You’re not getting gems in your watch. The “jewels” are glass. They’re placed between gears, to prevent friction. The best watches have many of them. No, 21 is not a lot.

To understand what a power reserve is, you need to understand how automatic watches work. They use the kinetic energy from your arm to move their gears. When off your wrist, they move through the energy they’ve collected. How long they can do this is indicated by their power reserves. 40 hours is a standard amount.

We would’ve loved if Seiko placed exposed backs on the SKX173 and SKX007 – they have many gears after all.

Alternatives

You have a good idea of how they perform. Let’s compare them with alternatives.

Orient Ray II

The RAY II is a tribute piece. It also looks like the Rolex Submariner. It comes with a black and silver dial, along with a toothed bezel and rhomboid hour markers. The timepiece is a bit smaller than the SKX173 and SKX007. It’s much heavier, though. It comes in at 7.05 ounces (199.8 grams).

Yes, there is luminous pigment on its hour markings. We, unfortunately, don’t know what the lume used is, but it lasts a long time. The watch has the pigment on its hands too.

Its window is not hardlex. You’re getting mineral crystal. If you remember, you’d know that it’s not that tough. The device doesn’t come with a crown in the 4 o'clock position either.

Being a Submariner dupe, its shark-tooth bezel is not a surprise. We’re glad to say that you can rotate it.

You’ll be able to handle quite a bit of water. The RAY II is resistant up to 660 feet (200 meters). It disappointingly isn’t ISO 6425 certified.

You’re looking at an automatic device. It comes with a different movement. The F6522 caliber mechanism is inside of it. This results in a 40-hour power reserve and 22 jewels between gears. What’s noteworthy is that you get hacking as well as winding.

Seiko Men’s SRPB91K1

The watch looks like the Submariner, but not as much as the SKX173 and SKX007 do. However, it’s closer to the Submariner in size. Its case is 1.73 inches (44 mm). If you have smaller wrists, the SRPB91K1 is not for you.

It’s double the SKX007’s weight – It comes in at 6 ounces (170 grams).

It can’t handle that much water. It’s only resistant to 330 feet (100 meters). There is LumiBrite on its markers. The pigment is on its hands too. Just like its counterparts, you can rotate its bezel.

If you’re wondering what its window is made of, it’s the brand’s favourite hardlex.

The timepiece is automatic. You’re getting the better 4R35 movement. It comes with 23 jewels and a 40-hour power reserve. Considering that it comes with more jewels, you’re getting a smoother watch. Does it come with self-winding and hacking? Absolutely!

Unfortunately, the device doesn’t have a skeleton rear. Since it has so many jewels, watching them between gears would’ve been mesmerizing.

Its dial has a calendar, but it’s not useful as the SKX007 and SKX173’s – you’re only getting the date.

Seiko SKX009

The SKX009 doesn’t look like the Submariner. Its appearance is pretty different from the two as it comes with a red and blue bezel. However, there are shark-teeth on it. They’re a nod to the Rolex piece. Speaking of its bezel, you can turn it. It ticks as it turns.

The type of crystal is hardlex. You already know how we feel about it.

Its dial is easy to read. It’s dark blue, with large white hour markers. As you guessed it, LumiBrite is in them. The pigment is on its watch hands too.

We’re fond of watches with crowns in the 4 o'clock position. Thankfully, the SKX009 has it at this angle.

The watch is the same size as the SKX007 and SKX173 but heavier.

The timepiece is automatic. The 7S26 mechanism is inside of it. You’re already very familiar with it. We would’ve loved if its rear was exposed, but you don’t always get what you want.

The SKX009 can handle 660 feet (200 meters) of water. If you want to dive with it, don’t hold your breath.

Final Thoughts

Seiko is known for its great mechanical pieces. They delivered with the SKX007 and SKX173. The two are essentially the same watch. However, the SKX173 is the international variant. As the SKX007 is sold only in the US, it’s more expensive as American watches are produced in limited quantities.

The watchmaker has countless watches that are similar to these two. If you’d like to find out what they are, give our Pinterest a look! We update it with all kinds of watch lists.

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