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Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB ‘Cocktail Time’ Watches For 2017

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

For Seiko fans, the Seiko SARB065 “Cocktail Time” watch, released a few years ago and sold only in Japan, is something of a legend. If you were looking for a dressy watch that wouldn’t leave a big hole in your wallet, it would certainly be easy to recommend. Recognizing the popularity of this watch, Seiko has decided to come up with no fewer than eight new Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB “Cocktail Time” watch models that closely mirror the older SARB065 with its deeply sunburst-textured dial. Only this time, they reside in Seiko’s Presage line.

As many popular Seiko models are “nicknamed by the public,” these SARB watches were dubbed “Cocktail Time.” They are dressy but not overly formal, and it is easy to imagine wearing such a watch in a drinks-after-work setting, even without knowing Seiko’s stated inspiration for the designs. Apparently, the designs were based on cocktails created by Japanese bartender/mixologist Ishigaki Shinobu. These new watches share the same origin story, so we feel it is appropriate to also refer to them as the new Seiko Presage “Cocktail Time” watches.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

The Presage collection was introduced to the international market in 2016 and seeks to offer affordable Japanese mechanical watchmaking to the rest of the world. So it makes sense for these eight new watches to join the Presage collection. The eight watches will fall broadly into two groups: the SRPB series which consists of simple three-hand watches with a date and the more complex SSA series which is made up of watches with a power reserve and date sub-dial. Let’s take a look at the SRPB series watches first.

There will be four new watches in the SRPB series, and the SRPB43, with its silvery blue sunburst dial, is the one is that is closest to the older SARB065. The case is mostly similar, except for the larger and more substantial crown. The case is made out of stainless steel, but Seiko will offer two variants that come with yellow and rose gold-plated cases. Case diameter is unchanged at 40.5mm, but case thickness has been slightly reduced from over 13mm to 11.8mm.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

There have also been some tweaks to the dial beneath a “box-shaped” Hardlex crystal. First, the cursive “Automatic” text at 6 o’clock is gone. Now in its place is the Presage wordmark and “Automatic” in a stronger and more formal script. There are also new colors for the dial. Apart from the silvery-blue SRPB43, there are the SRPB41 in dark blue, SRPB44 in a cream dial and yellow gold case, and finally, the SRPB46 which has a brown dial and a rose gold case. The dark blue SRPB41 will be offered with a stainless steel bracelet, while the rest of the watches will come with leather straps.

The movement within is the 4R35, which is actually a bit of a downgrade considering that the SARB065 was equipped with the 6R15. Though both movements have mostly the same specifications – both beat at 3Hz, both hack and hand-wind, and both feature similar finishing – the 6R15 offers a longer power reserve of 50 hours (as opposed to the 41 hours of the 4R35) and is built using better materials. The movement is visible through a Hardlex crystal display case back.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

While the Seiko Presage SRPB43 with its silvery-blue dial is likely going to be the most popular model of the foursome, I’m personally most intrigued by the Seiko Presage SRPB46. Its combination of the unusual mocha-colored dial and rose gold case looks interesting and I’m looking forward to seeing the watch in person.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

The SSA series will also see the introduction of four new models. Like the SRPB series, these watches will feature a dial that has a sunburst finish. Case diameter is identical at 40.5mm, but the SSA is slightly thicker at 14.5mm because of the added complexity of its movement.

The movement of the SSA series watches is thicker because of its power reserve indicator. The power reserve indicator stretches across the dial from 12 to around 4 o’clock. This puts off the symmetry of the dial a little but, based on the press photos that I’m looking at, it doesn’t seem all that bad unless you are an absolute stickler for symmetry. At 6 o’clock, you have a date sub-dial that adds to the dial’s sense of depth and has a texture that contrasts in a neat way with the rest of the sunburst finish. The hands and hour markers are rendered in the same faceted style as the SRPB series.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

The SSA series consists of the Seiko Presage SSA341, which has a cream dial and comes with a stainless steel bracelet; the Seiko Presage SSA343, which has a silvery-blue dial; the Seiko Presage SSA345, which has what looks like an onyx-like dial; and finally the Seiko Presage SSA346, which has a pinkish dial and a rose gold case. My pick is the SSA345, which has a black dial that looks quite different (at least from press photos) from most other black dial watches that I have seen. The SSA345 is the one that I am most looking forward to seeing in the flesh.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

The Seiko Presage SSA series watches are powered by the 4R57, which is thicker than the 4R35, hence the added thickness of the SSA series watches. It beats at 3Hz and offers a power reserve of 41 hours. It can also be hacked and hand wound. The movement can also be viewed through a Hardlex display case back.

Seiko Presage SSA & SRPB 'Cocktail Time' Watches For 2017 Watch Releases

The best thing about these new Presage watches, however, is the price. Prices will begin at under $500, which represents tremendous value for what you get. Seiko watches are often very well crafted for their price and these watches look extremely well-designed. Watches in the Seiko Presage SRPB series will be priced between $425 and $495. The slightly more complex watches in the Seiko Presage SSA series will see prices at around $475 to $525. If you are looking for a dressier watch that doesn’t break the bank, these watches should be high on your list for consideration.

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  • Ross Diljohn

    I like the white face with the date dial. Will Get if I see it.

  • Ivan Oreškovi?
    • egznyc

      That’s very cool indeed – though I’m not sure I want to see a portion of the 4R35 movement on the dial side through an open-heart cut-out. What I do love is that there’s no date and that it’s a black dial – something they’ve done only with the SSA model noted in the article (and that power reserve complication, frankly, clutters the dial in a rather unattractive way). Where did you learn of this one, and might there be additional limited edition versions?

      • Ivan Oreškovi?

        Well, let us hope that there will be a clean model, like this, without day, date, pr or any other complication. 😀

        • egznyc

          Frankly, I think it’d be a real winner to have such a clean model – even more so if they could give it a domed sapphire crystal and 100m WR. I’d even pay a little more – without hesitation.

          • Ivan Oreškovi?

            And with the equivalent of 6R15 inside? xD

          • egznyc

            Naturally ;-). Although I realize my prior suggestion of a domed sapphire crystal would add some cost, since it’d have to be very domed to have the right look.

  • Raymond Wilkie

    ” Seiko presage “, that folks is what you call an oxymoron.

  • Gokart Mozart

    It looks better than the Grand Seiko’s and Seiko Grand Seikos.

    I really like the power reserve model. Shame the text for the power reserve was not a bit more subtle and discreet. But a very good looking watch even if it is very thick.

    Don’t know much about Seikos but are the 4r movements similar to the ETA 2824 or cheaper?

    Shame there’s no picture of the back.

    • Raymond Wilkie

      Looked everywhere, can’t find a back shot which is really annoying, especially when it’s mentioned. Why would they bring out a watch and not show you the back ?

      • IanE

        Here’s a shot of the 4R35 (nothing special of course given the price) – albeit in a different watch (the Seiko Prospex Field Watch – SBDY003) :-

        • Raymond Wilkie

          How dull , makes you wonder why they bothered.

          • EdipisReks

            I bought an original Cocktail for my ex-BIL who liked watches, but wasn’t a watch fan, per se. That movement wasn’t much better decorated, and he loved looking at it. He didn’t know about Geneva stripes or Anglage, he just knew that he loved being able to see the mechanism work.

          • Raymond Wilkie

            For someone who hasn’t seen an open back before am sure Bill was super impressed to see it.

          • Skip

            Other than a handful of Chinese watches, every watch movement under $1,000 looks boring. What is strange is that there are display casebacks at all for this price range. The Longines Master series is probably the least expensive watch with serious decoration.

          • Raymond Wilkie

            Had a wee look around the Seagull site and not getting all snobby about it they do do some nice watches. How long they last is another matter.

          • spiceballs


          • ??????

            What movement inspires you in a $400-500 watch?

          • Raymond Wilkie

            It wouldn’t cost much more to make it a tad more interesting by brushing the metal in different directions or a little machine cut decoration. ……………come on , work harder team !

          • spiceballs

            Not all have the available funds (>US$1K?) to spend, and perhaps some (such as I) simply enjoywatching a reasonably finished mechanical movement (such as the 7S25 in my older Seiko 5) whirring away.

          • Skip

            Price. This is not an expensive watch. The only pretty movements in this price range are from China (Sea Gull chrono is shockingly good).

        • Gokart Mozart

          Thanks. Is the 4r the movement in a Seiko 5?

          • DanW94

            No, they use the 7s series movements.

          • spiceballs

            Some (more recent) Seiko 5s now have the 4R36 movement.

          • DanW94

            Thanks for the update. I wasn’t aware. Mine from a few years back has a 7s26.

      • Raymond Wilkie

        I have to say two of the most important aspects of reviewing a watch by picture alone is a real handicap for both wearability and the way the tight plays on the dial, and with this model that must be really nice

    • Andrew Buckley

      I have the original Cocktail Time with the 6R movement. The watch is gorgeous but the movement is nothing special and the timing is all over the place…nowhere near the reliability of a 2824. The fact that they’ve downgraded the new variants to the 4R is a retrograde step and smacks of penny pinching (uncharacteristic for Seiko). Shame…

    • Skip

      The ETA 2824 is WAY better. They are not comparable. I like the 6r15 movement, but the ETA 2824 is still better. Actually, those ETA movements are pretty much awesome.

  • Mark

    I have to admit, I’ve been waiting for the SRPB46 since I saw a wrist shot of it from BaselWorld taken by Fratello. The whisky color really plays with the light. I’ve been counting down to the July release since I saw it!

    • Raymond Wilkie

      Have to say two of the most important aspects of reviewing a watch by picture alone is a real handicap for both wearability and the way the tight plays on the dial, and with this model that must be really nice.

      • Mark

        Ray, you are right. That being said, Kenny did a real good job with the article, in my humble opinion. I read the first review from Basel, then read the press release that Seiko e-mailed me. Between the pictures online and the specs in the release, I get more of an idea how it would fit my wrist. But, nothing replaces trying it on for yourself.

  • DanW94

    The dials on the Cocktail Time punch so far above their weight class it’s ridiculous. That mocha color dial model has me hankering for a Scotch “neat” right about now.

    • Beefalope

      Agreed. I bought a Cocktail Time for $325. The finishing on the dial makes it look like a much more expensive watch. Seiko does amazing dial work across all of their lines.

      • egznyc

        I do love the look of these – even though the cases are pretty plain. That’s a very good price you paid.

    • egznyc

      I love LOVE that dial, too, but don’t really want to get a gold plated case. What to do? (Maybe settle for the original.)

      • Skip

        Check out the Brightz models. They come in black dial or white dial with the same effect. They also come on a surprisingly good bracelet.

        • egznyc

          I appreciate that suggestion very much; indeed, I’ve been thinking about the sdgm 003 for some time. Do you own one – or have you at least tried one on? I suspect that I’d like it, but might not love it, since it has a kind of modern dress watch sensibility, lacking in the vintage-y charm of these “cocktail time” designs. For example, it appears that these Brightz models, while quite lovely, have flat crystals and the chapter rings (rehaut?) are not quite to my tastes, for example. But I’d certainly value any feedback you can provide on what they’re like on the wrist. (And yes, I gather they’re very well finished at their price point.)

  • Pistol Pete

    Those power reserve models look amazing, but the case thickness is an absolute deal breaker.

  • Word Merchant

    Stunning and great prices… but Hardlex, Seiko – why? Astonish the world and use sapphire.

    • Yeah – that’s my main gripe too.

    • JozefX

      Considering that these are not supposed to be everyday beater watches, I think the hardlex glass is fine. In a typical situation where you’d be wearing these, I don’t think you’re in much of a danger of bumping them into something or scratching them. I suppose they wanted to distribute the budget onto other things.

      • Tony NW

        I banged pretty hard on mine a few days ago… closing the rear hatch of a rental car. Just a very different geometry than I was used to. Fortunately, my shirt cuff took the brunt and I don’t see a mark, but THAT is why you want a very tough crystal.

    • Shinytoys

      Seiko’s argument is that the Hardlex is tougher to scratch but offers less glare under water. I can attest to some of that logic having been diving with my orange monster. I also have a Prospex 777 where I’ve put a double domed aftermarket quality sapphire crystal in place of the original Hardlex. Underwater, the look is different, and I would argue that The Hardlex might get the nod for underwater clarity, and certainly can take more of a beating. Above water the, no comparison, the sapphire wins everytime…

      • egznyc

        Kudos for actually getting your watches wet. As for the Seikos here on review, I think they’re not really intended for going swimming. Wish that they were, but these are dressier pieces after all.

    • Skip

      It is the doming. That would cost too much with Sapphire. A sapphire would need to be flat, or have a modest dome. Most highly-domed crystals are hesalite.

  • Mark1884

    Although I am not a fan of Seiko, some of these look pretty good. Clean & classic dials with some cool colors. The bracelet is not an option for me at all – MUST be on the strap.
    They should offer the blue dial & the brown “Vignette” style dial on the power reserve models.

    The price is acceptable for a Seiko.

  • Framlucasse

    I love the one with the blue dial. On a blue leather strap, it would have been perfect.

    • egznyc

      You can take off the bracelet and put on a blue strap. I’m tempted to do just that – since that would give it a very different look. But first I have to decide whether to get that version or a different one – maybe the original.

  • IG

    I’d rather spend that money on actual cocktails than wasting on Seikos.

    • Framlucasse

      Yeah? That’s fine with me… obviously you don’t know much on the subject.

      • Of watches or cocktails?

        • Berndt Norten

          Jazz and cocktails

          • egznyc

            Where did jazz enter the picture (unless you’re thinking of Hamilton’s Jazzmasters)?

          • Berndt Norten

            It’s a line from a jazz standard, “Lush Life,” THE definitive version of which is by, of course, John Coltrane (with Johnny Hartman)

          • egznyc

            And that’s Coltrane the musician and not the Oris watch tribute piece 😉

        • Framlucasse

          On Seiko watches.

    • Tony NW

      Really? Still going up and calling the brand of coconut rum in your daquiri? Still think you’re looking cool when you belly up and order a Redneck, specifying it be made with GENUINE Bud, Jack and Southern Comfort?

      Why the antipathy towards Seiko?

    • Beefalope

      That’s because you’re an alcoholic.

    • Skip

      So true, it is like driving a car that is not a Ferrari, or wearing clothing that is not hand-made in Italy. It reminds me of the useless peasants who waste their time with jobs that pay less than a million dollars. I mean, why even bother working then?

      I mean seriously, it is bad enough that people like us are forced to allow minorities to have cocktails in the same clubs as we belong to. Why can’t we at least ban minorities and poor people from wearing watches at all? They need to get back into their loin cloths and return to the servitude which their station demands. Good men such as IG know this.

  • 200 Fathoms

    What’s up with that little “31” on the SSA series date dial? It’s like the designer got around to the end of the scale and said, “oh crap…”

  • Howie Boyd

    This series has most of the trends which I hold against the brand lately, There are the cluttered and mostly useless fractional seconds tick marks. Oh, and the word “Automatic” on the dial. Sure a lot of brands do it, but it’s tacky looking and unnecessary. And all the fake gold case materials a poseur could ask for? Check! And now, just like the Prospex line, we get the stupid dial marked with the word Presage. Not a fan!

    pres·age (noun)

    a sign or warning that something, typically something bad, will happen; an omen or portent. “the fever was a somber presage of his final illness”

    • Framlucasse

      “typically something bad”… you’re wrong. There is nothing negative in this term.

      • Howie Boyd

        Yes, that’s what I get for trusting google searches for definitions, I suppose. It doesn’t change my opinion however. I will not purchase a watch with “presage” printed on the dial, nor will I purchase Charmin toilet paper. Them’s my foibles.

    • Skip

      Many people hate the second marks on Seiko watches, but they pretty much all have them. I know it seems silly, but Japanese people need that kind of thing. I agree that they serve little purpose (so does the seconds hand), but if you want a Seiko you must learn to live with it, or mod your dial. There are many Seiko 5 mods, but I am not aware of any Presage line mods yet.


    You are not taking much of a risk at these prices so if the Seikos float your boat then go for it.
    it is hard to start bickering about things when for roughly 450 bucks you get a brand spanking new watch that is well made, robust and elegant.

  • Jesus Christ

    Seiko has way too many lines. They spun off Grand Seiko when they already had Credor as a high end brand. Now there’s Presage?

    • Berndt Norten


    • gw01

      In business terms, they are trying to reach all segments of the watch market. They have the 5 series (dirt cheap/ gateway drug), then the PROSPEX, PRESAGE, GS, CREDOR. Other offers from the likes of LVMH, Richemont, Swatch Group, etc. are also split in different brands for different segments of the market:

      (and I don’t see a riot from this…)

      • Jesus Christ

        Swatch has different subsidiary companies with different people managing them and housed in different facilities. Seiko builds all their stuff from the same factories with the same people.

        • gw01

          You’re splitting hairs. Their artisan studio, for example, are not the same people than the one that work with quartz. They are a big company, vertically integrated, that instead of being applauded are criticized, so what? Rolex is also vertically integrated, have their own foundry, gem department, etc etc, etc. (and I don’t see a riot over this either)

          Bottom line is: they do their homework. All of it. With different degrees of complexity. Other brands simply re-case an ebauche and sell for way more money than their Seiko counterparts. Watch slobs.

          • Skip

            Many watch brands were better and better priced when they simply used ETA movements. The worst thing that has happened to the Swiss industry is this obsession with in-house movements. Breitling and Bell and Ross should not have in-house movements. It is a waste of time. Tudor should not have an in-house movement. These silly adventures do nothing to add value and only add cost. I love ETA movements. They are good quality, reliable and easy to service. Screw in house. It is a waste of time and money for any watch under $10,000.

          • gw01

            At the prices they charge, B&R and Breathing really should have in-house movements. If we ignore the engineering side of watchmaking, then it’s a fashion contest, and unless we talk precious metals, there’s not much that would separate a ‘high end’ ETA-based (Miyota, Sellita, etc.) Swiss watch from a Michael Kors. Yes, finishing is important, and there is an artistic side, but there’s so much cost to be “justified” on the subject.
            When engineering is out of the picture, then watch prices are all about snobbery, brand recognition, etc. that they are about actual horology.
            When brands design their in-house movements it shows the actually understand how time is told… a possible study case could be Ressence, ETA-horkhorse-based, but adapted to tell time in their own language.
            What makes a $10k ETA based “worth it”? (it’s a serious, non-sarcastic question)

          • Velocitor

            What makes a $10k ETA based “worth it”? (it’s a serious, non-sarcastic question)

            -Collector’s answer: If the materials used, quality of design/engineering, and skill of assembly add up to $10k, and the result is a superior product of timekeeping excellence, you could say it is worth it.

            -Investor’s answer: Resale value, depreciation/appreciation.

            -Cynical answer: If you like it (which is highly subjective, but usually means either the look or the brand snob-appeal) and have the cash, not much else comes into the equation

        • Beefalope

          Seiko has really been struggling as a business for their decades of existence. They need a brilliant business mind such as yours to stay afloat.

          Dial them up. I know they’ve been waiting for your call.

    • Beefalope

      Ummmmm…so don’t buy them all, maybe?

      Problem solved.

      What do you care how many lines they have!

    • Skip

      Well, there is Lorus, Ananta, Astron, King Seiko, Grand Seiko, Pulsar,…

      Well, perhaps you have a point there, but I think the sub-lines like Presage or Prospex are fine. The full-blown other branding (Pulsar) does not make sense to me, save for ultra-luxury Credor (that Eichi II watch is pretty bad ass).

  • JosephWelke

    I like these watches, but I much prefer the SSA’s implementation of a date subdial. Pity about the power reserve as it destroys the symmetry. I could ordinarily forgive that but the reserve’s scale and nomenclature just look like they’re printed with no regard to aesthetics, and I dislike how the complication added thickness to the case. As well, the power reserve font doesn’t match the font of any other dial text. Bad, bad!

    Make a mocha SSA and ditch the reserve and I’m all over it.

    • Skip

      I wish they did the power reserve like they do on the Grand Seiko, with a simple little gauge at the 7:00/8:00. It is simply, elegant and useful. This one is just too large.

  • gw01

    IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER WHEN HATING ON SEIKO: !!!!!They make their own movements!!!!! Under $500- in that range, other brands either do quartz or re-case some pedestrian ébauche clone…

  • Simon_Hell

    No, it doesnt present “a tremendou value” if the thing is available only in japan. It presents an irrelevant provincial watch made with the assumption that a person will buy it only if he comes from the same country. By that logic it must be a sh*t watch.

    I often dont concur with most run of the mill ‘watch community’ douchebags turning their nose up at seiko, just because it is seiko. It is also unfair seeing how often seiko has to be twice as good to get the same kind of respect as the traditional misogynistic douche-McGouche swiss brands. But whenever I see Japan-only seikos, i say fcuk you seiko, shove it up your whale-murdering ass, youre either too stupid too see the watch’s potential or too inconpenent to be able to market it outisde of your village territory. Either way wipe that Roman script of the dial, and stick with your crazy intergalactic voodoo lettering your target group can actually read.

    • SuperStrapper

      Skip the meds today?

    • Elijs Dima

      “stick with your local voodoo lettering”

      Hm. Stupid *and* racist all at the same time. Good job, you… did it.

      • Skip

        I would kill for a Seiko with Kanji script on it.

    • Shinytoys

      “whale murdering ass”…

      The Fentanyl mouth patch can fix you up in no time…

    • ??????

      So much power in this comment! Lol

    • Beefalope
    • snapjack

      Well he does have a pic of one of the worst human beings on the planet as his avatar so what can you expect.

  • Sam Soul

    I don’t mind the power reserve indicator, but the addition of this date sub-dial goes against the elegance expected from the ssa34x. The srpb4x look better with less things displayed. IMHO anyway…

  • ??????

    Why hate Seiko? Who else offers decent mechanical watches with in-house calibers for $400-500? The blue one would absolutely rock on brown round scale gator.

  • SuperStrapper

    I really enjoy my original cocktail time, nice to see them evolving the line. I wonder if they’ll have ‘dent dial issues with these. The dials really are spectacular, and play with light in a a fantastic way.

  • Phil leavell

    Seiko come up with some nice watches then do something silly to a nice design by putting hardx Crystal faces or making Japan only; it makes Seiko hard to like because it’s so frustrating to try to get one of the Japan only models
    I have more Japanese watches in my collection and I have swiss or German. And that is slowly changing .

    • Shinytoys

      Japanese domestic market pieces are not that hard to get, and more than a few models ultimately end up outside of Japan for sale.

      • Phil leavell

        Yes but from the grey Market which creates a whole new problem

      • Phil leavell

        Maybe you have never been ripped off by a gray shop I have out of New York

        • Shinytoys

          I haven’t, I know my sources…

        • Skip

          Try Long Island Watches (I have bought a half dozen watches from them). I am also a huge fan of Seiya Japan. I have bought two watches from there (much higher price though) and they are fantastic.

          I would avoid New York retail shops like the plague. They are mostly run by the Jewish mafia. Many of them launder drug money. If it is an authorized dealer, then you are okay, otherwise avoid NY jewelry and watch stores like you would avoid street gangs. There are numerous stories of these places selling fake products, franken watches, and all sorts of illegal activity. I know of one store that was busted for adding hundreds of dollars to credit card purchases minutes after people left.

          The respected websites are good. I can personally vouch for Long Island Watches and Seiya Japan.

          • Phil leavell

            Thank you I have learned my lesson the shop that begins with j I will never deal with again I’m not the only one who bought supposedly new. it came with no warranty card, scratched and the purchase order said refurbished the ad said new. A buddy of mine bought a watch at the same time from them same problem they’re trying to charge him $45 to ship it back to them. I am a fan of the Japanese watches. Many moons ago when I started to collect watches the only thing available were the Japanese watches where I lived thanks for the advice

  • Tony NW

    I have a SARB065 “Cocktail Time Cool” (the silver faced original one), which I purchased right after hearing about this replacement line.

    Kenny does a great job describing them and most of the differences. For example, the difference in movement and the Presage print replacing the Automatic script. But there are other differences that, while subtle, make a big impact… For example, the SRPB43 has solid batons, the SARB065 batons are split at the inner edge of the racetrack. That may seem unnoticeable, but it makes for a really nice effect, and given the extra cost, I have to believe Shinobu Ishigaki designed that in intentionally.

    Oddly, the lower-spec reduced-detail new watches cost more too. Although the reduced height would be nice.

    One really cool think about the SARB065 is, I have a pretty good number of pretty cool watches, but the Cocktail gets attention in meetings and has resulted in several people stating they were going to get one. My green sunburst Swatch Sistem 51 gets some attention, but really isn’t meeting appropriate.

  • Andrew Hughes

    Nice selection. Nice price. Has anyone ever counted how many Seiko models exist? It must be in the many thousands by now.

    • ??????

      Less than Invictas. 🙂

  • Pete L

    Great range and great value although no fan of the ‘gold’ and would prefer a sapphire crystal.

  • Shinytoys

    Beautiful dials and proven motors in a very slick package that a mere mortal can afford…

  • Beefalope

    Dollar for dollar, no watch company can come close to what Seiko does.

    • commentator bob

      I would argue Swatch Group often provides better value. Tissot has a 300 m dive watch with a ceramic bezel and sapphire crystal for $1,000 list / ~$600 grey (that will cost well over $1,000 grey with Seiko) and a COSC silicon escapement dress watch for the same.

      The Tissot Visodate, which I would argue is a nicer dress watch than the Cocktail Time (including in objective ways like a sapphire crystal), can be had in the $300s.

      • Beefalope

        This is an interesting debate, and I know that brands like Tissot and Hamilton are putting out really good stuff.

        The reason why I give the edge to Seiko is for one simple reason: finishing. At their price point, the finishing of a lot of Seiko watches is amazing. As a comp to the Tissot you mentioned, look at the Seiko Transocean, which has standard price of $1,200 and a street price of $800. For that, you get 200m of water resistance (200m vs. 300m makes no difference, given that nearly all of humanity will never reach levels of even 100m), a ceramic bezel, zaratsu finishing on the magnificent bracelet, a terrific handset and a dial that is comparable to Grand Seiko. No lower-level Swatch group watch can compete at similar price points on finishing. Or look at something like the Grand Cocktail watches. The dial work on there for a $600 watch is better than watches I’ve seen at 10 times the price.

        Hamilton and Tissot make very nice watches; I’m particularly a fan of Hamilton. But there’s never any impressive finishing on them. Even when we get to the next level, such as Longines, they dial furniture finishing still leaves much to be desired. For example, I had a Longines Legend Diver No-Date before. It was terrifically designed watch, but the dial was mediocre, and the handset is just plain awful. Seiko is never guilty of something like that at the $2k plus — or even $500 plus — price point.

        I know the COSC certification is important to a lot of people, and that’s fine, but it’s something that I never consider in any of my watch purchases. Several seconds a day make no difference to me, particularly because I rarely will wear the same watch for more than two or three days in a row.

        Automatic chronographs are an entirely different story. You can pick up the Seiko Presage chronos for $2k, and they’re much more technically sophisticated than the 7750s in a Hamilton, for example.

        • commentator bob

          I can’t find a Transocean under $1,200 except for an ugly white dial version, so it is a twice as expensive watch. And not having the date at exactly 4:30 (to avoid having to use a custom date wheel) is chintzy at that price. Also 45 mm is way big. But I agree Tissot saves its money on the dials.

          • Beefalope

            I bought my Transocean for $800 from an AD, but I’ve dealt with the AD a few times, so perhaps that’s why I was able to get it at that price.

            45mm is way too big, which is why I ultimately had to sell the watch, bu the build quality and finishing were exceptional.

            The 5100 is only available in vintage movements. That’s not a fair comparison. You’re not going to get most new Longines chronos at a $2k price point. And are the Longines chronos actually better than comparably priced Seikos? Design-wise, I would say that Longines has a strong edge, but that edge is equally strong for Seiko in terms of finishing with those awesome enamel or lacquer dials.

          • commentator bob

            A lot of the cheap Tissot chronographs are actually Lemania 5100 based (and I believe some of the other brands, and a Swatch that was out a couple years ago that I have), but they got rid of the 24 hour day night indicator and moved the minute counter to a subdial.

            For Longines vs. Seiko chronographs they both have column wheels and 3-6-9 layouts so it comes down to whether the integrated design of the Longines is truly better than the modular design of the Seiko with a separate chronograph module.

        • Skip

          I can agree that Hamilton has some first-rate watches, but Tissot watches all feel off to me. The just seem wrong. I cannot explain why, but they never feel worth the money. I would say that Stowa, Laco, Junghans, and Junkers all make great German watches for under $1,000. Aristo is another one. These are some great watches for the money that have something different from Seiko.

          What some Seiko Presage models do have is a certain elegance for the price. I have a SARB035 that I took off the bracelet and put on a nice alligator. It looks like far more than a $330 watch. Similarly, the SARX033 not only has true blued hands, but a shockingly nice bracelet for a $700 watch. One other watch that I am dying to try is the Sum/blumo. I have never handled the watch, so I cannot comment yet, but from photos it looks rather nice for $500.

          There are great intro Swiss watches, but Seiko has its gems.

    • Denis Danijel Puhar

      In my modest opinion, this is ALMOST true and TECHNICALLY completely true. Why?

      Because the brand, that is even more appealing (or maybe completely equal to a certain – quite large group of customers, I’d argue – like me), is ORIENT – though much smaller, with limited models and price range, which is much smaller to choose from.

      And Seiko owns ORIENT, but has let them all the freedom, to design watches and build movements in-house, as they did before.

      It seems like a perfect synergy. Seiko decided to give Orient the ‘freedom’ it needs to stay a recognizable and very quality brand in this price range and Orient on the other hand profited also with all the experience and knowledge from Seiko coming to them.

  • commentator bob

    Power reserve is a stupid fake complication that Seiko is better than.

    There is no reason for it on an automatic watch, and on a hand wind watch it can go on the back.

    Want 4 hands coming out of the center of the watch? Make it a GMT.

    • Gokart Mozart

      Not a fake complication at all and I find it really useful.

      My watch will not last from Friday night to Monday morning, so over the weekend I can see how much power is left and wind it up.

      In a way the power reserve is just as important for autos as manuals.

      • commentator bob

        I guess with an automatic three hand plus quick set date watch I would rather just reset it on Monday than check on it over the weekend.

        And the point still stands that the power reserve can go on the back instead of the front.

        This is not a a critique specific to Seiko. It’s really goofy that Tudor marred the face of the North Flag with a power reserve when it is the one display back Tudor, so it could have gone on the back.

        • Agreed on the North Flag – I don’t mind power reserves at all but on the back is definitely more appropriate, and the North Flag’s power reserve is absolutely awful. Looks like a design from something at Toys R Us.

    • Beefalope

      Given how efficient Seiko movements are at winding, I would agree that the power reserve is a pretty useless complication. I barely touch any of my Seikos, and the seconds hand starts rights up, and then it only takes about four or five hours for a full wind.

    • Denis Danijel Puhar

      “There is no reason for it on an automatic watch, and on a hand wind watch it can go on the back.”

      I disagree completely with this statement for a couple of reasons:

      1. Knowing how much wound up is your watch can be an extremly useful feature, especially in watches which are more in the lower price range spectrum. Why?

      It is a very well known fact, which every competent watchmaker will agree with:

      Having the watch ALL the time wound up more than 50% (minimum some would even argue) reduces to varying degrees (sometimes even a lot) the effect of lack of isochronism in a watch, thus making it more precise (if not even accurate);

      2. I’d ask myself, what people, who aren’t so physically active anymore as they were before (older, less active people, people, who are in such or another way restricted in their movement capabilities because of a medical condition, or even ordinary people, when the time comes, when they can’t be so active as they would wish because of reasons, they have no impact on,…) would say in reply to your comment.

      I’d bet, that if they wear their watch regularly, they would only welcome this feature.

      3. Having a power complication reserve can make a watch actually look better, if the design is right. It all comes down to the individual taste of the user in the end. A good example would be the Seiko Presage SSA303J1 or the limited edition SSA309J1 (look at the pictures below – the one, which comes as a limited edition is in the first picture ).

      Both very beautiful watches and in my opinion at least the power reserve adds a unique feature to them, which makes both watches even more appealing.

      I know, that there is always the argument:

      “If they can be hand-wound”, what’s then even the point of having a power reserve?”

      A controversial topic to some people, but hand-winding is in an automatic watch a SECONDARY function and should be used only under conditions well known and also explained in the manual.

      And please, making a point with using the words like:

      “…a stupid fake complication…” does not give you even bit more credibility, rather the opposite. ).

  • Lincolnshire Poacher

    I have the original sarb cocktail time. Its a stunning watch. The only gripes are that its a little thick for a dressy casual watch. It comes on a terrible strap, and really should of used sapphire.
    I also prefer it to the new ones. The 6r is no great movement, but to drop to 4r seems a bit mean. Also with that type of very visual dial, I find the extra complications on the SSA look a bit messy. That’s horses for courses, and a personal preference.
    The srp versions are nicer, although I prefer the even size of the hour indices on the sarb. The srp has different sizes between the quartets and in between.

    • JozefX

      I wonder if the 4R movement is thinner than 6R? Maybe that was the driver behind the decision to use 4R, as it allowed them to thin down the new models. For all its qualities, the most common complaint about SARB065 is that it’s a bit too thick for a dress watch, so if they decided to sacrifice the 50h of power reserve, to make a thinner watch, that does make sense for a dress watch IMO.

      All that said I too prefer the design of 065 to the new models. The cursive lettering of automatic, the split-hour indices, the more appropriate shape of the crown (the onion crown looks kind of a touch too big on these). All little things, but they tip the scale.

  • Anthony F Indeglia

    Great watch! Im a big fan of seiko but after buying my first Locman Italy watch theres no looking back.

  • Larry Holmack

    Really nice looking watches.

  • manivelle

    I love Seiko, but sometimes they can be too enamored of English. Do you really need to read “Automatic” on the dial?

    • Hydra

      quite many swiss do the same…..if you have not noticed that already…

    • ???

      Maybe it’s part of tradition(to the era that automatic watches were rare/special). But probably another reason is for dial balance. If you only have the brand name under the 12 o’clock and nothing above the 6 o’clock, there will be a kind of imbalance.

    • Skip

      I liked the old SARB with the stylized “Automatic.” I dislike the plane script with the extraneous “Presage.”

      • Phil leavell

        I also love the sarbs the offense is one of my favorites I’ve had it for probably five six years I love it. I believe you wrote earlier those tissot I wear as my beter watch I think we got it for free and as wonte it for 8 years and beat the crap out of it serious . The elf on the ends up on my wrist at least once twice a month. It’s only recently that I started collecting the Swiss watches

  • Phil leavell

    East cocktail watches are indirect competition of the Omega , longine and tissot at a price point they can’t beat

  • Atlee Elmont

    Besides the blue dial, I’m not crazy about any of the new models. The SSAs are too busy, and the gold plated cases look cheap.

  • Denis Danijel Puhar

    I disagree about the price. Maybe it is just me, but here in Slovenia, in a shop, that is also a official Seiko retailer, has the previous generation of this watch (without the added complications, but with the movement 6r15 – which is in my personal experience WAY BETTER than the 4r36 or in this case 4r57 and which is 2 levels above the 4r36, not one) and there it costs 500€ and they offer discount of a minimum of 10 (and if you are a good client of theirs, 15%). In first instance you get the watch for 450€ and in the second for mere 425€. Sadly at this moment a little bit over my budget, otherwise I would have jumped to get it for such a price.

    Some may say, that the specifications on paper, especially the comparison between the 4r36 an 6r15 are of little value, my experiences tell a whole different story. Also we let aside my personal opinion, there are more are more people emerging, which are very disappointed about this movement (especially after Seiko decided to start exporting it abroad under the name NH35). I got the impression, that with this complete ENTRY level movement it is more like playing lotto than anything else (if you are lucky you get one, which runs out of the box without even the slightest need for a regulation and/or adjustement, but others – including me – were very disappointed with it and the simple fact, that this caliber is also found in watches, that are sold well below 200$, says very much.

    And my shop is found on the other side of the globe (a good question would be, trough how many retailers – though official – it had to go, before reaching Slovenia, where I live, and each taking its share of the profit), yet it is offered at a price, that is unbeatable.

    And I would go even so far, that if my budget is tight, I’d rather buy a watch with a caliber 7s26 than the supposed big improvement 4r36. Yes it has manual winding and hacking, but so what, if it is otherwise poorly built and has many times issues with accuracy, precision, isochronism, positional variance and the list goes on.

    This fact in my opinion at least in part explains well, why the previous generation divers watches SKX007 are still most popular, though the movement in it is REALLY old (as the same one found in the watches, which are now almost legendary, the Seiko 5 SNK809 and its variants).

    • Andrew Buckley

      Agree 100% with your comments on the NH35. Buying a watch with this movement is a bit like playing Russian Roulette (though slightly less deadly). Having said that, my experience of the 6R movement isn’t much better. I’m wearing my “1st Generation” Cocktail Time this week and it’s running -30 seconds per day.

    • Polerouter

      Concerning the crystal, such a highly domed sapphire would cost even much more than that, and a flat or slightly domed crystal would necessit a big change in the design with a thickening of the case.

      So while I also love my 1st gen cocktail time, I would actually prefer it with an oldschool plexiglas which can at least be polished.

      • Denis Danijel Puhar

        To be honest, my comment lost a little bit of direction, when I started to talk about the type of crystal, that SHOULD be used. Obviously, this is more a ‘taste’ of the individual, than anything else.

        I personally would never go so far with such a watch, which has plexiglass instead of all the other glass variants. But i doubt, that the manufacturers itself would even consider such a variant (though I agree, that it has its advantages – they are just not for me, at least when we are talking about the SEIKO PRESAGE line).

        More troubling and important are for me individually the things I wrote before the ADD-ON. And I agree, that I forgot to mention that there are three variants of the 6r15 caliber.

        The 6r15A first generation of this caliber, which obviously has it share of its problems (thanks goes to Andrew, who reminded me) have been hopefully addressed it the later versions of it, B and C. But also this, I can not say for sure – no personal experience.

        There is even something, that bothers me more. Till now I (and I dare to say, that also many others like me) mostly relied on research and education, before buying a watch (especially such one, that is on the ‘edge’ of my budget – that is most of the time pretty thin and I can “reward myself” with a watch, which has such a price tag on it, pretty rarely. 🙁

        Today (at least for people, who are for such or other reason “bound” and restricted to the entry lower class luxury watches, someone like I am – in the moment at least), you have to be almost an expert (and even this may not be enough anymore), if you start hearing comments like:

        “…I’m delighted, that this watch has a NH35 movement inside, this played a big part in my decision to buy it.” (I paraphrased the comment).

        And to be clear, such a comment is not the first one I read and beside that, I got the feeling, that in addition to watch industry (especially the “kickstarter” – startup projects), this caliber was also “embraced” by the watch journalists and aficionados (I may be a wrong about this and it is just a feeling – at least I hope so).

  • JimBob


  • Damon Usborne

    I would love a cocktail time without a date window. Do I care about the date if I am enjoying cocktails?

  • Benji J

    That SSA is the ticket! Wasn’t so much into the new text change on the base model from the last version of the cocktail time, but the model with the power reserve and hand calendar is way cool. It’s cool to see so many new variations and color options to a very classic watch.

  • Cuppa Joe

    I think these look gorgeous, and they’re a perfect business watch for those unable/unwilling to spend bigger bucks. But the movement is a bit troubling. I have the Seiko turtle (with similar 4R36) and accuracy is NOT its thing.

    But that dial tho…

    • Lol same. SRP779 is mine – loses 8 seconds a day on average, sometimes up to 13. Atrocious.

      • Cuppa Joe

        You’re lucky. Mine is 30. It’s one of those things where I wonder if I should have a watchmaker make some adjustments. I don’t mind it too much though… it’s not a daily wearer.

  • Ulysses31

    Very attractive, but too much text on the PR model.

  • Ranchracer

    Can these be found anywhere in the USA? I’ve searched far and wide for the SSA but have come up empty.

    • Riando Sembiring

      I just bought one at Amazon.

  • Martin

    Hi everybody! I am planning to get dress watch and I narrowed my choice to 2 Seiko watches. One is from this article – SRPB41 but other SRPA25j1 is very very similar in dial (blue), movement (4r35), even bracelet! Both are very similar and dont know what is the difference?! Any help or suggestion for my choice…tnx

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