The Affordable Seiko 5 “Field” Gains a GMT Function

The military-style watch now sports twin time zones.

Seiko has expanded its range of (very) reasonably priced sports watches with the Seiko 5 Sports Field Sports Style GMT. Available in stainless steel (SSK023) or black-coated steel (SSK025), it retains the military-inspired aesthetics of its time-only counterparts, while incorporating an additional hour hand showing a second time zone.

Initial thoughts 

The new models evoke a sense of familiarity with the “field” style dial and 24-hour markers, a longstanding design that’s been part of the Seiko 5 line-up for decades. But now the dial adopts a modern, utilitarian style, departing from the vintage-inspired aesthetic found in the time-only “field” models such as the SRPG35 and SRPJ85. And purists will appreciate the absence day-of-the-week display, with the dial having just the date.

The black-on-black SSK025 achieves an almost ideal look for this type of watch. The near-monochromatic aesthetic creates an extremely satisfying contrast with the orange accents that brings to mind a fighter jet cockpit.

The SSK025

Beyond the cosmetic changes, the new models are typical of Seiko’s entry-level GMT models. They are more accurately described as dual time zone watches with an independently adjustable 24-hour hand, rather than true GMT watches that feature an adjustable local-time hour hand, as seen in pricier watches from Grand Seiko or Tudor. Although setting the time for a second time zone involves a few additional steps, this represents an acceptable compromise considering the price.

The pricing of the Field Sports Style GMT starts at US$400 on a leather strap. Though pricier than the standard time-only models, the second time zone easily justifies the price and makes this a straightforward choice for anyone seeking a budget-minded travel watch.

Two time zones for less

The SSK023 and SSK025 expand the affordable Seiko 5 Sports collection, which underwent a complete overhaul in 2019. Soon after, the brand introduced the Field Sports Style, a sub-line made up of military-style watches with an unusual bezel-less design. Most of the “field” models sport an additional 24-hour scale indicating military time, now made more useful with a GMT hand.

The GMT is offered in two variations: the all-steel SSK023 that has a faint resemblance to the Rolex Explorer II with its orange GMT hand, and the SSK025 in black-coated steel.

The two models have textured black dial with luminous applied numerals, a date window at three o’clock, and a fixed, 24-hour bezel, while the seconds hand and the second time zone hand are tipped in orange. And they retains the relatively compact size of its time-only siblings with a diameter of 39.4 mm and height of 13.6 mm. 

The new GMT is powered by the cal. 4R34 visible beneath the transparent case back. This movement is also found in Seiko 5 Sports GMT, and is a variant of the cal. 4R36 present in the time-only Seiko 5 Sports. Mechanically it is a straightforward modification, the cal. 4R34 substitutes the day display with a 24-hour hand with a simple change of gears.

Not being a true GMT, setting up the second time zone requires first setting the local time, then push the crown in to its first position where the GMT hand can be adjusted. Then the GMT hand has to be set to home time, while turning the crown counterclockwise will set the date.

The SSK023

Key facts and price

Seiko 5 Sports Field Sports Style GMT
Ref. SSK023 (steel)
Ref. SSK025 (black-coated steel)

Diameter: 39.4 mm
Height: 13.6 mm
Material: Steel or black-coated steel
Crystal: Hardlex
Water resistance: 100 m

Movement: Cal. 4R34
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date and second time zone hand
Winding: Automatic
Frequency: 21,600 beats per hour (3 Hz)
Power reserve: 41 hours

Strap: Matching bracelet with folding clasp (SSK023) or black NATO leather strap (SSK025)

Limited edition: No
Availability: At Seiko boutiques and select retailers starting January 2024
SSK025: US$400 (strap)
SSK023: US$430 (bracelet)

For more information, visit


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Roger Dubuis Turns to “Ice and Fire” for the Knights of the Round Table

An artisanal dial possibly inspired by a famous novel.

Now the signature watch of Roger Dubuis’ modern-day offerings, the Knights of the Round Table “Titanium Damascus” is inspired by the Arthurian fable. The latest edition is centred on the theme of “ice and fire” – the reference to Game of Thrones is unmissable – and is surprisingly artisanal despite the ultra-contemporary aesthetic.

Decorated with blue Murano glass and Limoges porcelain, the dial has 12 knights around a frozen lake – a miniature diorama depicting the knights confronting imminent peril emerging from the waters’ depths – and a case made of a pattern-welded titanium alloy.

Initial thoughts

The “ice and fire” edition is no doubt catered for a niche audience – and at 45 mm few can wear it easily – but still has a unique appeal. Moreover, it departs from the modern, skeletonised style that’s characteristic of the brand’s automotive-inspired timepieces. It merges artisanal decoration and modern watchmaking – it is big and bold but boasts unexpectedly intricate detailing. The watch encapsulates the Roger Dubuis “hyper horology” ethos in both design and construction, while the dial and movement (which is hallmarked with the Poincon de Geneve) stay faithful to traditional watchmaking and decoration.

This Knights of the Round Table is priced at approximately US$374,000, putting it in the same price range as other editions in the series. It is also priced similarly to comparably extravagant watches from the likes of Jacob & Co., but this arguably distinguishes itself by virtue of the craftsmanship in its execution.

An Arthurian winter landscape

Launched a decade ago, the Knights of the Round Table series has become a hallmark of the Geneva brand. The watches all share a dial bearing miniature figures inspired the Arthurian legend with 12 knights at a round table that serve as hour markers. Over the years, the brand has debuted several iterations of the concept, from an edition with Celtic-inspired aesthetic to a futuristic take with polygonal knights.

The focal point are the dozen intricately-detailed knights circling the dial, standing around an ice-covered lake with its surface cracking, the knights are portrayed as ready to do battle with the evil beneath. 

Each knight is a micro-sculpture standing just 6 mm high, cast individually in 18k rose gold using moulds created from 3D scans of resin prototypes. Once cast, each figure is hand engraved, resulting in a unique pose and attire for every figure. In all, the knights require three days of work to complete.

The periphery and base of the dial is transparent blue glass created using the Murano method. According to Roger Dubuis, obtaining the right shade of blue required nearly six months of research and development. The glass also forms the base of the protruding ice blocks, each of which is topped with white biscuit porcelain from Limoges to simulate the cracked lake surface.

The Knights of the Round Table retains the brand’s distinctive, triple-lug 45 mm Excalibur case with its recognisable notched bezel and crown.

Described as “Titanium Damascus”, the case material is similar to Timascus, a popular alloy for high-end custom knives. It is essentially a combination of two titanium alloys patterned welded together and then acid etched, resulting in a wood grain appearance derived from the different properties of each alloy. As a consequence of the titanium case, the watch is lighter than past editions of the same model in precious metals.

The bezel, on the other hand, is a single-alloy titanium and polished. It sits on the raised sapphire crystal, creating a narrow window below the bezel and around the dial. And the crown is also titanium, but inlaid with blue Murano glass.

Inside is the in-house cal. RD 821, an automatic movement with a power reserve of 42 hours. It’s fitted with a rotor open worked to form a geometric motif that’s inspired by Gothic stained glass windows.

Key facts and price

Roger Dubuis Knights of the Round Table “Titanium Damascus
Ref. RDDBEX1058

Diameter: 45 mm
Height: Unavailable
Material: Titanium Damascus
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance: 30 m

Movement: Cal. RD821
Functions: Hour and minutes
Winding: Automatic
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 48 hours

Strap: Leather strap with folding clasp 

Limited edition: 28 pieces
Availability: At Roger Dubuis boutiques only
Price: 503,000 Singapore dollars (equivalent to US$374,000)

For more information, visit


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