What Seiko diver has a body made of Brightz Titanium with Diashield treatment (similar to what the GS Spring Drive SBGA031 has), the classic angled lugs of the discontinued Seiko Samurai, the heart of a Seiko Sumo, the premier version of the hands of the Seiko Monster, and is half the price of a Seiko MarineMaster 300? That’s right, its the Prospex SBDC007 more lovingly known as the Shogun.
Ignored by most WUS when first introduced due to its hefty price tag (approx USD 1200), which was almost double that of the Sumo, it is now enjoying a surprising revival among the WUS community. One likely reason was probably the fact that the Yen has fallen substantially against the USD recently (thanks Abe!), making this slightly more affordable. Another reason is its impending discontinuation, as rumoured among the watch collectors community, due to the increasingly long wait for inventory to be delivered to the big 3 Japan internet retailers.
For watch collectors who find the Sumo too big and the MM300 too tall, this is simply the perfect watch. It has a shorter lug-to-lug compared to the Sumo, yet it sits lower than the MM300.
The finishing on the titanium is simply extraordinary. Compared to my Brightz, the Shogun is predominantly brush finished except for a halo around the dial face which is highly polished. In addition, the diashield finishing is simply extraordinary. My watch is mostly scratch free (except at the lugs due to strap changes), thanks to the diashield coating. Can’t say the same for my Brightz. Please note that titanium generally is less scratch resistant that stainless steel. Brightz titanium also cannot be polished, unlike stainless steel!
I would also like to comment on a item frequently complained on by WIS, that the Shogun is using the same hands as the Monster. To be correct, the design of the hands are exactly the same, but the finishing on the Shogun hands are highly polished and likely to be made of polished steel compared to the hands of the Monster, which is likely to be made of plastic. With trademark hands like this, no one will mistake the Shogun being anything but an out-and-out Seiko diver.
The one complaint that I would have was that it does not come with an expanding clasp similar to the MM300. However, by a stroke of extraordinary luck, I realised my Kinetic Landmaster came with the expanding clasp made entirely of titanium! This was better than the MM300 expanding clasp which is made of stainless steel. The sizing are exactly the same (18mm) hence it fits the Shogun bracelet perfectly. As such, I now have a full titanium bracelet with expanding clasp!
The bracelet also came with solid end links which is a bonus.
The movement is the workhouse 6r15 hacking movement, beating at 21600 bph, with a 50hr power reserve. I’m somewhat torn between what to make of the 6r15. It is a Seiko workhouse found in its mid-tier watches, yet it has its beginnings from the 7s family, the lowest end movement. It would have been great if it came with a 8L movement, but I’m certain that would have easier double its price (just look at the Brightz Phoenix divers). A good alternative would have been the 4s movement. Alas, the 4s has been phased out for some time, and is now only used in the Credor watches.
All in all, I am very pleased with this watch during the short time that I had it. There is also an orange dial variant SBDC009, which had been discontinued for some time.
Point to note, as I am writing this post, I have actually posted my Shogun for sale due to an incoming item (which I’ll blog about in another entry). However, I might just keep it for my own enjoyment! I realised I do enjoy its unique merits, despite it not having much wrist time nowadays.