Japan public broadcaster NHK warned residents a tsunami of one metre was expected for Miyagi Prefecture.
The quake hit at 6:09 pm (0909 GMT) in Pacific waters off Miyagi region with a depth of 60 kilometres (37 miles), the JMA said, issuing an advisory for tsunami waves of around one metre.
Tohoku Electric Power Co has halted the Onagawa nuclear plant and is checking for any irregularities, NHK said.
There were no immediate reports of damage.
Miyagi prefecture was heavily damaged during the huge earthquake and tsunami of 2011, which saw waves over 40 meters high and killed over 15,000 people.
Public broadcaster NHK showed footage from inside its Sendai bureau showing a plaque suspended from the ceiling shaking for about 30 seconds following the tremor. It did not report any items falling from shelves or any immediate damage.
The quake could be felt in Tokyo about 400 km south of the epicentre.
NHK warned the public against coming anywhere near the shore.
The warning stated: ‘It is dangerous in the sea or near the coast. Those who are in the sea should immediately get out of the sea and leave the coast.
‘The tide will continue to be fast, so please do not enter the sea or approach the coast until the warning is cleared.’
The warning also said that it was expected that there would be ‘slight sea fluctuation’, and that in some places the tsunami may be higher than ‘expected tsunami height.’