Of the seemingly-endless options available within the Seiko 5 Sports range, the SBSA009 is one of those that most directly recalls its now-discontinued ancestor, the SKX011.
Yet, the SBSA009 is more than just a copy of its predecessor; the watch received some significant upgrades that make it a modernized sports watch and, considering its price, a serious value proposition. I review these upgrades and more in this review through the following categories:
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Seiko SBSA009 Specs & Price
- Style: Sports
- Case Diameter: 42.5mm
- Case Material: Stainless Steel
- Crystal: Seiko Hardlex
- Water Resistance: 100M / 330ft
- Dial: Sunray Orange, Lumed (Green LumiBrite)
- Bracelet: Stainless Steel
- Movement: Seiko 4R36, Automatic
- 41-Hour Power Reserve
- Day & Date
- Hacking/Stop Seconds Function
- Wind via Crown
- Retail Price: $295
Note: The model used for this review, the Seiko SBSA009, possesses a specific reference number that denotes it as a Made in Japan iteration. This same style is available under a different reference, SRPD59, when it is not made in Japan. The differences between a Japanese market version of this model and the international market version are minimal and only cosmetic. Throughout this review, I’ll note when there is an aspect unique to this Made in Japan model.
Seiko 5 Sports SBSA009 Case Dimensions
As alluded to in the introduction, there are a number of aspects that were modernized with this SBSA009. What’s perhaps the most critical characteristic on a watch, its case dimensions, remained largely unchanged when the SBSA009 replaced the SKX011 as the Seiko orange dial dive style.
All of this to preface that the dimensions on the stainless steel case of the SBSA009 are as follows:
- 42.5mm diameter (3 o’clock to 9 o’clock measurement)
- 13.4mm thickness
- 46mm lug-to-lug (“across the wrist”)
- 22mm strap size
The SBSA009 also possesses the Seiko trademark crown with guards at 4 o’clock.
Throughout the case and integrated into the crown guards and crown is a dual-finish of the stainless steel. The case is largely polished on its flanks while its top surface is brushed. This produces an attractive contrast of finishes that makes the case visually intriguing.
SBSA009 Diver’s Bezel
Much like the case, the bezel of the SBSA009 is stainless steel that is augmented with a textured outer circumference to allow for increased grip when rotating the bezel. Inside, the bezel cradles a diver’s scale insert that is black with metallic gold markings.
Lastly, the face of the watch is protected by a Seiko Hardlex crystal that, while not as scratch-resistant as sapphire, will undoubtedly get the job done. Additionally, since Hardlex is not unlike plastic, it is shatter-proof.
Seiko SBSA009 Orange Dial 5KX
The bright orange dial of this “5KX” is undoubtedly its most memorable feature. Aside from its blazing orange color, the dial also boasts a light sunray texture that I had a hard time capturing in the images. Nevertheless, I can assure you its there and it helps the dial to reflect light beautifully.
The dial is also marked by applied, polished hour indices with white luminous fills. Surrounding the entire face of the watch is a raised minute track that has black minute calibrations.
At center are gold-toned, high-polish hands also possessing luminous fills. The gold tone not only matches that found on the bezel but also provides excellent contrast and legibility, whether in the middle of the day or in low-light conditions. The day-date window found at 3 o’clock is composed of black text on a white background that likewise extends the legibility encountered throughout the dial.
If you’re detail-oriented, you likely already noticed this but I’ll highlight it now: at 6 o’clock on the dial, beneath the hour index, you’ll notice a small print: MADE IN JAPAN. This is one of the small cosmetic details that separate the SBSA009 from the SRPD59.
Three-Link Stainless Steel Seiko Bracelet
The SBSA009 is sold on a stainless steel Seiko bracelet that is slightly reminiscent of the Rolex Oyster bracelet. Intended to extend the theme of the case, it possesses a brushed finish on its top surface and a high-polish finish on the sides of its links.
While not a premium band, the SBSA009’s bracelet is solidly constructed and fluid so that it feels substantive yet comfortable when on the wrist. Its folding clasp possesses a dual-button release that inspires confidence, seeing as how it’s impossible to open the clasp without depressing the two tabs on its side.
Finally, if you are the type to change the bracelet, it’d be quite easy to accomplish as the case has lug holes that require little more than a paperclip to remove the spring bars and detach the bracelet.
SBSA009’s Seiko 4R36 Movement
Powering this orange-dialed sports diver from Seiko is another trademark of the Japanese manufacturer: the Seiko 4R36 movement.
The 4R36 is a self-winding (automatic) caliber with 24 jewels, a day-date complication, 41-hour power reserve, +45/-35 seconds/day accuracy, hacking seconds (stop seconds), and is made in Japan.
As with most other Seiko movements, the 4R36 is a robust and highly serviceable movement. It’s not incredibly accurate, though at this price point one cannot expect it to be. That being said, it is accurate enough for its intended use and will certainly take the knocks (and keep tickin’) that a sports watch is expected to undergo.
Lastly, the movement can be admired via the see-through caseback. It does boast an attractive brushed finish on its bridges and a Seiko-branded rotor. One can also see that this SBSA009 has a caseback crystal that is printed with Made in Japan.
Overall Review Of The SBSA009 (SRPD59)
After having handled many different models from Seiko’s 5 Sports collection, I can honestly say that the quality and value proposition posed by these watches is largely unbeaten. Therefore, the same can be said of this SBSA009.
The construction of the watch is solid and the dimensions are very well-executed. The watch wears quite comfortably and, with its bright orange dial and black diver’s bezel, provides a unique look at a very reasonable price point.
If an attention-grabbing sports watch is what you’re searching for, then the SBSA009 (or its cheaper sibling, the SRPD59) is certainly one to consider. If the dial is much too bright for your taste, I still recommend sticking with the Seiko 5 Sports collection but perhaps go for a more muted style.
"A properly upgraded and modernized iteration of one of Seiko's most popular sports watches."
Let me know in the comments if you think the SBSA009/SRPD59 is a worthy replacement for the previous SKX011! Otherwise, check out some of our other watch pages below:
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