[44KS King Seiko vs SJE083J1] A side by side comparison of Seiko’s reissue of their iconic King Seiko Vintage Dress Watch
Seiko's 140th Anniversary
2021 marks the 140th anniversary of one of the greatest watch company in the world and certainly the greatest watch company in Asia. It is Seiko's birthday next year! As we can see from the activities Seiko brings to the 60th anniversary of Grand Seiko this year, we can expect wave after wave of celebration from Seiko next year.
And yes, Seiko is not letting us down, they have just announced the recreation of one of the most special watches in their history - King Seiko, not any King Seiko but the second generation King Seiko and the first King Seiko that adopt Seiko's Grammar of Design.
What is King Seiko's relationship with Grand Seiko?
A little bit of history about King Seiko, back in the 1960s, Seiko wanted to create products that will help the company break into the international watch market and challenge the leadership status the Swiss Watch Making Giants. Internal competition between two sub-brand Grand Seiko and King Seiko was started, with the intention to create the best of the Japanese domestic watches as the answer towards the Swiss Watch Industry. As years of development, Seiko has built the movements that conquered the Swiss Chronometer Competition by winning all the Swiss making movements. The lesson learnt from creating these ultra-accurate movements was then transferred to domestic high-end watches including King Seiko and Grand Seikos. Technically speaking, Seiko will not be where it is without technological development from the internal competition between Grand and King Seiko.
Comparing the New SJE083J1 with 44KS King Seiko
The King Seiko recreation SJE083J1 similar to its older brother from over 50 years ago is cased in a mirror-finished case with multi-faceted mirror finish dimensions, bring a unique reflection of light to the watch. The watch is paired with the sword hands that proved to be the inspiration of today's modern Grand Seikos.
By comparing the vintage 44 King Seiko with the newly recreation SJE083J1 King Seiko, you will realise the case shape looks identical! The only difference is the case size have pumped up from 36.7mm to 38.1mm giving it a more modern look.
Zooming in the dial of the watch, you can also tell the recreation have done a very nice job by creating the white dial with highly polished multi-dimension hour markers. But we notice a special feature on the recreation King Seiko, the applied Seiko logo is designed to lift up from the dial slightly giving the Seiko logo a more eye-popping effect. You can also notice easily that there is a new date window near the 3o clock mark as an added function.
Two areas of the recreation that I especially appreciate is their take on recreating the golden medallion by adding the gold plate into the metal case back of the watch with the Golden Crown King Seiko logo on it. With the years of technological development, I am sure the new gold medallion will not oxidize by sweat from arms like the vintage ones.
The boxed-shaped sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating helps to retain the vintage accent of the King Seiko meanwhile giving it each ability to resist scratches from daily use.
Overall, we think it is a very special watch and a wonderful idea for Seiko to look back into the bright history and select one of the best King Seiko in the collection as their anniversary watch. However, the price tag at €3,400, means that you can get 3 or even 4 well preserved vintage 44King Seiko with all the heritage and history from the market. As a vintage watch lover, I will certainly recommend the later, and as a result, we will be listing a 44King Seiko as a celebration to 140 years old of Seiko too!
We regularly source and sell 44KS from Japan
The 44 King Seiko we sold earlier this year:
Stay tuned, and Stay Safe!