The Seiko SRPD53’s Case
The Seiko 5 SRPD53 has a case that is virtually identical to that of the SKX it replaced. More specifically, the dimensions are:
- 42.5mm diameter
- 46mm lug-to-lug
- 13.4mm thick
- 22mm strap size (between the lugs)
Like all other 5 Sports models, this 5KX Pepsi boasts a satin finish on the top part of the case and lugs. Contrasting that brushed finish are the high-polish case flanks and crown guard.
The SRPD53 also has lugs holes, a feature that can at first sound trivial. However, these are vital for a watch as versatile as this one where you could theoretically use a different strap each day of the week. With the lug holes, you can change straps in less than a minute and avoid the lug scratches that many watch collectors already know and dread.
The SRPD53’s bezel, like the case, is polished steel that has been enhanced with a knurled texture to improve grip. Cradled within said bezel is the two-tone bezel insert that, if it wasn’t obvious already, earns the watch the nickname “Pepsi” due to the blue/red color scheme.
This being a diver’s bezel, it rotates unidirectionally (120 clicks) and is graded with silver numerals.
5 Sports SRPD53 Dial Details
In the dial department is where the SRPD53 starts to shine. The watch has a royal blue dial with a sunray texture that radiates beautifully under direct light. On the other hand, in the shade, the dial is closer to a deep blue tone that is just as appealing.
Applied on the dial are large hour indices with a polished finish, each individually filled with white lume that glows bright green at night. The hands at center axis have a matching polished finish and are also filled with tons of lume. Moreover, surrounding the entire dial is a raised minute track imprinted with silver minute markings.
Not to be forgotten is the wide rectangular aperture at 3 o’clock that displays the day and date wheels. These are black text on a white background that makes them very easy to read.
Finally, the entire face of the watch is protected by a Seiko Hardlex crystal that is scratch and shatter-resistant, two qualities that no sports watch should ever lack. On the back, there’s also a crystal that offers a view into the movement, though I could not find its composition publicly advertised on the web.
Stainless Steel Bracelet
The stainless steel bracelet on this SRPD53 is one of two bracelet options within the new 5 Sports collection, though this 3-link variety is the only one offered with the SRPD53. Interestingly enough, it is quite reminiscent of the Rolex Oyster bracelet much in the same way that many SKX models were sold on Jubilee-style bands.
The bracelet’s surface finish matches that of the case; that is to say, it is satin-finish on top with mirror-polished sides. This can also be said of the deployant clasp that itself has a double push-button release system as well as a “fold over” component. These leave few doubts that once the watch is on your wrist, no unintended motions will be able to take it off.
Another significant upgrade encountered in the SRPD53 is the machine beating within – the Seiko 4R36 self-winding movement. This is an automatic caliber with 41 hours power reserve and 24 jewels. The accuracy is rated to +45s/-35s per day which I find appropriate for a timepiece in this price category.
The movement also boasts some functions that are indiscernible to the naked eye. First, there’s a stop-seconds or hacking function, which allows the time to be set precisely to a reference time zone. Second, the movement may be hand-wound directly via the crown. The latter is a common feature of modern calibers and one that significantly lessened the convenience of the previous SKX009.
Unfortunately, this new feature came at a cost – the crown no longer screws into the case. This decreases the depth rating of the SRPD53 to 100m or 330ft of depth. In my experience, this degree of waterproofness is plenty though some have taken it as a sign of poor execution on behalf of Seiko. I couldn’t disagree more.
Seiko 5 SRPD53 Review
If the introduction to this blog didn’t already convey my bias for the new 5KX Pepsi over the old SKX Pepsi, then surely by this point it’s more than clear. I also believe it’s justified.
On the wrist, the SRPD53 just wears like a modern watch. The case dimensions are indeed the same but the watch just feels better. I find it to be less bulky and sleeker. Perhaps it’s the new bracelet, or the new dial, or the new movement; perhaps it’s all of these upgrades combined. Upgrades that I genuinely believe place it more than just a single step above its predecessor.