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The Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 seems to be a somewhat unusual diver at first glance. However, the fact that the case is surrounded by protection is not the only special feature. What else distinguishes the strictly limited special edition, you will learn in this review…
Seiko in the Uhrenlounge
For this review, the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 was kindly provided to me by the online portal uhrenlounge.de. The Uhrenlounge of Aika Jewelers from Dresden is specialized in the online sale of watches from well-known manufacturers such as Oris, Tissot, Hamilton or even Seiko. For example, we already worked together on my last Seiko review, when I took a closer look at the Seiko Presage “Style 60’s” SRPG09J1. At the end of this watch review, you’ll find links to the store, where there are many more timepieces besides a Seiko offering that is second to none! If you have any questions about watches, the competent customer service of Uhrenlounge is at your disposal.
Inspired by a tuna can
I am just not getting tired trying out new watches from Seiko. Boredom definitely does not arise with the huge assortment of the Japanese traditional manufacturer. Today, we are once again dealing with a sporty Prospex and once again with a diver’s watch. As the name suggests, the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 belongs to the Tuna family, which are considered the most robust divers of the watch giant. The first Tuna models came on the market in 1975 and have since earned a dedicated fan base that appreciates the high recognition value of the watches. This is also where the name comes from, as the case of the Tuna watches is said to be strongly reminiscent of a tuna can.
In this case, the “tuna can” is an outer protective case made of titanium, which was considered extremely innovative when it was first introduced in the mid-1970s. Over the past decades, the Japanese have repeatedly launched new models. One of the latest innovations concerns the drive. Instead of a conventional quartz movement, the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 relies on environmentally friendly and durable solar cells to power the quartz movement. I’m particularly excited about this!
With an unusual watch comes an unusual box. That of the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 has a finish that reminds me of carbon and feels premium. Enclosed is the warranty card from Uhrenlounge and the user manual. I open the box and free the diver’s watch from its foil.
The model from the mid three-digit price segment fascinates me. While identifiable as a Seiko watch at first glance, it looks completely different from the stainless steel divers I’ve tested so far. It looks as if the timepiece has been put into an open, larger case and screwed to it – a diver’s watch in a protective suit, you might say. The rugged look features matte finishes, functionality and large amounts of black. Orange color accents on the unexciting dial give the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 additional sporty touches.
The Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 on the wrist
I grab the black silicone strap that protrudes from under the case and put on the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1. I quickly come to the realization that this is definitely not a watch that goes down on the wrist. With a brute case diameter of 47 millimeters, the black Tuna fits larger wrists in particular and, in addition to its sporty character, also exudes a large portion of self-confidence. On the other hand, the case height of only 12 millimeters is strikingly flat, which further emphasizes the sportiness.
Nevertheless, the size of the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 is not immediately apparent. This is because the dial is slightly smaller due to the “double” case, which also contributes to the unusual appearance.
The double case
Let’s take a look at this “double case” in detail. Basically, it consists of a dark coated stainless steel core, which merges into the lugs in one casting, as you can see well on the photos of the back. Screwed on is a so-called titanium carbide overlay, which is also dark. The unidirectional rotating diver’s bezel is easy to operate due to indentations on the edge. The surfaces of the case materials are all matte, which I personally like extremely well. If you think the watch is a real stone on your wrist with a double case, you’re wrong. Titanium is extremely flexible, lightweight and durable. This makes the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 very suitable for diving.
If you want to take the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 on dives, you can do so to a maximum depth of 200 meters. The value is not record-breaking, but should easily suffice for our leisure activities. On the underside, a solid stainless steel case back protects the movement from water penetration. Here you’ll find your model number among other engraved specifications. Seiko manufactures the watch in a limited edition of 5000 pieces. The center of the caseback is emblazoned with the engraved Great Wave of Kanagawa, the famous Japanese painting. All Seiko watches have this marking.
As with other models in this price segment, Seiko relies on a so-called Hardlex crystal for the Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1, which is basically a refined, higher-quality mineral crystal.
A pioneering movement
Solar-powered timepieces are becoming more and more common in the watch world. Seiko also seems to have recognized the benefits of the technology and has now become one of the leading watch brands in this field. The inner quartz movement, a Seiko V157, is powered by solar cells. They sit beneath the surface of the dial. The power reserve is impressive. Once fully charged, the movement will run for up to ten months without the dial needing to come into contact with light.
Winding the watch and setting the time via the crown are simple. The positioning of the crown at 4 o’clock seems to be intelligent. This means that it does not interfere with the back of the hand in everyday use.
Dial and bracelet of the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1
On the dial you will find all the important information needed in everyday life. The classic diver design is all about functionality and convinces with timeless beauty and good readability. This is especially true in the dark, where the round indices and broad hands shine brightly and evenly. Accentuation is provided by the orange minute hand. Seiko has equipped the Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 with a date window at 4 o’clock.
For diving, the black bezel, which is unidirectionally rotatable counterclockwise, is suitable.
I would like to quickly say a few words about the bracelet. It is made of black silicone, quite wide and designed to withstand wind and weather. According to my research, Seiko has always relied on silicone instead of rubber, as the man-made material does not age over time and is much more durable.
The bracelet is rounded off by a pin buckle. The other end, like the back of the case, has the familiar engraved wave motif.
My conclusion about the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1
With the Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1, Seiko actually surprised me in some aspects. The watch is noticeably different than any Seiko diver I’ve tested before. This is primarily due to the innovative solar drive and the inventive titanium carbide outer case. A design element that you have to like – I like it a lot. Qualitatively, with the limited edition Tuna diver, we get a watch that fits in with the usual good image I’ve had of Seiko for a long time. Fine materials and impeccable workmanship at a fair price.
If you are looking for an exceptional diving watch at these conditions, the Seiko Prospex Tuna Solar Black SNE577P1 is the best choice.
In the store of Uhrenlounge the Tuna currently costs 437,- Euro. As usual, you can find all important links in the following. My final thanks go, as always, to Uhrenlounge for making this watch review possible.