Mysterious: The Chronomaster Revival Shadow

A timepiece shrouded in mystery. Its existence has eluded collectors and Zenith collaborators alike for decades, wondering whether it actually existed. As the legend goes, in 1970, shortly after Zenith debuted the groundbreaking El Primero calibre, the manufacture had produced a prototype of a manual-winding chronograph, housed in a blackened steel case. Only a handful of this prototype was made, but the model was never officially produced or marketed. Some of the watchmakers and longtime employees of Zenith had heard of the rare watch, and there were even sightings. But they were largely unconfirmed and so the watch remained a mystery.
After Zenith began celebrating the 50th anniversary of the seminarl El Primero chronograph calibre in 2019, the manufacture’s team set out ot find the prototype of the black chronograph, which hadn’t been seen since the early 1970’s. The time had finally come to complete the black watch project that had begun almost half a century earlier. The Chronomaster Revival “Shadow” does not directly reproduce a historical watch but reimagines what could have been.

The Chronomaster Revival “Shadow is heavily inspired by the obscure black chronograph prototype from 1970 and housed in a 37 mm case, a faithful reproduction of the very first watch fitted with the El Primero – the A384. But instead of the traditional choice of stainless steel with a superficial layer of black coating Zenith has opted for microblasted Titanium, bringing out the dark grey nuances of the lightweight yet highly durable metal with its completely matte finish. The case is waterproof up to 5 atm.

In spite of its dark demeanor, the Shadow remains a highly legible chronograph, with grey counters and tachymeter scale subtly contrasting against the deep, matte black dial. The hands and applied markers are filled with white Super-LumiNova that emits a bright green glow in the dark.
Hours and minutes are displayed centrally, and at 9 o’clock you’ll find the running second. The central second hand belongs to the chronograph, at 3 o’clock you’ll find the 30-minute-counter and at 6 o’clock the 12-hour-counter.

Unlike the prototype from 1970, which feature a manual-winding chronograph movement, the Chronomaster Revival “Shadow” features the most prolific automatic chronograph ever made, the El Primero 4061. It operates at a frequency of 5 Hz and provides a power reserve of at least 50 hours.
And of course, the watch is equipped with a display back, so the movement can be admired accordingly.

The Chronomaster Revival “Shadow” is delivered with a black rubber strap with a cordura-effect and a touch of white on the stitching.

Soonow Instant Rainbow: The Most Colorful of Skulls

When the past meets the future, something beautiful happens. It’s called the present. In these unique times, we are constantly being challenged to explore new ways of perceiving the now. And the HYT Soonow Instant Rainbow tells this intensely contemporary, fluid story in a captivating, colorful way. Time’s intrinsic flow presents itself as a broad spectrum of possibility. ‘Now’ potentially lasts forever, as it continually becomes what was ‘soon’ just a moment ago. Stopping and preserving time are as illusory as prolonging a rainbow. All we can do is enjoy the beauty of both as they appear to us.

This multi-colored timepiece, integrating the HYT fluidic module, shows time and light performing their intrinsic magic. Its design is rooted in the truth that both are in constant motion. Its message is that both should always be appreciated and never restrained. Yellow and blue, two of the three primary colors, trace the paths of elapsed and future time respectively. The other colors of the rainbow spread across and around the dial with refined gradual shading. Light dances with 668 sapphires, amethysts and tsavorites in 14 color variations, In combination with the violet anodized titanium dial, covoered with 313 yellow gold pins, this heightenes the overall radiance of the mesmerizing, three-dimensional whole.

The look of the skeleton on the dial of the Soonow Instant Rainbow has a hypnotic quality. Its right eye shows the power reserve progressing smoothly through the entire color spectrum, as does the seconds indicator in the other socket. Different monochrome Super-LumiNova outlines, around the openings for the eyes, nose and mouth, draw the gaze. And the skull offers a grin full of solid gold teeth.

The HYT Soonow Instant Rainbow is a very limited edition with only 8 pieces available.

Hublot Big Bang Sang Bleu II Limited Edition

Blue is the new black – at least if you ask watch manufacturer Hublot. And the new Limited Edition of the Big Bang Sang Bleu is also a true artistic sculpture on the wrist. The watch reinforces Hublot’s Big Bang Integral collection. The overall design and functionality of the Sang Bleu II are identical to previous models of this collection, but the colour scheme is a different one.
The introduction of the iconic, award-winning Big Bang design in 2005 paved the way for further successful collections such as the Classic Fusion or the Spirit of Big Bang with complications ranging from the most classic to the most complicated of watchmaking. This is one of the reasons why it continues to shape Hublot’s extraordinary DNA with constant growth.

From an ancient practice to a worldwide cultural phenomenon, tattooing has become an art form in its own right thanks to the work of visionary artists such as Maxime Plescia-Büchi, founder of Sang Bleu. And the Big Bang Sang Bleu II is the expression of Plescia-Büchi’s craft of geometry and dimensionality, implemented in the form of a timepiece. A watch, a sculpture, a work of art that tells the time – a fusion of different concepts to create a unique, timeless watch, brought to life by Hublot’s expertise in materials.

As already mentioned, the new Hublot Limited Edition is entirely blue – blue like the ink of the Tattoo Studio, which name it bears. Both, dials and bracelets come in this colour, emphasising the design of geometric lines that run across the hands, bezel and case. The bezel is not round but hexagonal and is fitted with the classic six H-shaped screws. And the alternating polished and satin-finished surfaces further emphasise the geometry of this Big Bang. The case of the Sang Bleu II is water-resistant up to 10 atm.
The skeletonized dial consists of different layers which together create a complex 3D effect. Reading the time display is a challenge and may require some practice. A central chronograph seconds hand extends across the entire diameter of the dial; the hours and minutes are indicated by arrow-shaped hands placed on square, dragon-shaped structures. Two hexagonal, rotating subdials are placed beneath several elements; at three o’clock you’ll find the chronograph minutes, at nine o’clock the running seconds. And between four and five o’clock there is also a small date window.

The 45-mm-case of the Big Bang Sang Bleu II houses an Unico in-house calibre. The HUB1240 automatic chronograph movement operates at a frequency of 28,800 vph and provides a power reserve of 72 hours. The movement can be seen through the sapphire case back, including the rotor which was designed by Buchi.

The Big Bang Sang Bleu II is available in two limited versions. Hublot offers 100 pieces of the King Gold version and 200 pieces of the Titanium version. Both models are presented on a blue rubber strap.

Corum and the Beauty of Mechanics

In 2013, Corum welcomed a new line to the Admiral family – the Admiral AC-One. Keeping in mind the key design codes of the Admiral collection, the lines of the iconic dodecagonal-shaped case was reworked to become more rounded, and angles less prominent. And titanium became the material of choice for this contemporary reinterpretation. Designed as a robust timepiece to complement luxury offshore boating, the Admiral AC-One 45 is even sportier, bolder and pushes the boundaries of creativity a step further.

The AC-One 45 Openwork Automatic introduces a skeletonized dial. The movement is the calibre CO 297, a new calibre, developed by Corum in-house specifically for this model. The bridges visible on the dial side were designed to be in harmony with the dodecagonal-shaped case, as well as the silhouettes of the nautical parents. A sub-dial displaying small seconds is at the 9 o’clock position, while the power reserve indicator sits at 3 o’clock.
Like the AC-One 45 Squelette, which was introduced in 2014, the architecture of the AC-One 45 Openwork Automatic juxtaposes this otherwise rather bulky timepiece with a touch of lightness. But unlike the Squelette which features a completely skeletonized double-date disk, the Openwork Automatic boasts bolder lines and therefore sports a more robust and athletic look.

Corum offers the AC-One 45 Openwork Automatic in two different versions. The first, with a titanium case which adds lightness to the overall design and adds a futuristic vibe. The second version pairs contrasting rose gold with black PVD-coated titanium for a more sporty feel.

And for those of you who are looking for a more complicated mechanism, Corum has prepared the AC-One Openwork Tourbillon. It features a tourbillon at the 6 o’clock position (in addition to all the details mentioned above). Technically sophisticated and beautiful to look at.

All watches feature redesigned straps made from rubber on the surface and synthetic textile on the bottom.

Into the Mariana Trench with Omega

When Victor Vescovo piloted his submarine „Limiting Factor“ to the bottom of the Mariana Trench at the beginning of this year, he set a new world record with a diving depth of 10,928 metres. Three Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Ultra Deep Professional watches were along for the ride: Two attached to a submersible’s robotic arm, another to a Lander.

And who could be better suited to accompany a journey into the abyss than Omega, as the brand’s watches have joined divers and adventurers in dangerous depths for decades. In 1932 the „Marine“ was born – the first diver’s watch for everyone. This watch was used by the researcher Charles W. Beebe when he dared his 14-mile dive. 
1948 the Omega Seamaster was introduced, valued by British pilots and sailors for its water-resistance and absolute reliability. The Seamaster 300 from 1957 was designed specifically for divers and underwater workers. 
The Omega „Ploprof“ was created in 1970 and has accompanied Jacques-Yves Cousteau on his dives. Only one year later followed the Seamaster 1000, one year after that the Seamaster 120 Big Blue. In 1993 Omega launched the popular Seamaster Diver 300M. 
The year 2005 then saw the beginnings of the Ultra Deep, which we present here today.

For Omega, the development of the Seamaster Planet Ocean Ultra Deep Professional started from scratch and included some risks. A watch doesn’t have to be enormous to withstand extreme pressures. The manufacturer managed to limit the thickness of the diver’s watch to less than 28 millimetres without sacrificing its exceptional resistance. The bezel, case, caseback and crown were machined cutoffs from the hull. The Seamaster Planet Ocean Ultra Deep Professional also comes with a viewport. The loadbearing surface of the Limiting Factor’s viewports has been engineered to minimise pressure on the inside edges of the cone, where the stresses are highest. 
Fully integrated into the titanium case, the lugs of the Seamaster Planet Ocean Ultra Deep Professional are left open to lower the risk of exceeding material limitations at full ocean depth, as both the watch and the strap can be subjected to high traction loads. They are called “Manta” lugs due to their distinctive look.

The maximum pressure selected was within the tolerances required in the Mariana Trench, but to be safe and meet the standards for diving watches, Omega insisted on adding a 25% safety margin, which meant that the watches had to work up to 1500 bar. And as if that wasn’t enough, the three watches were subjected to METAS rigorous testing for ten days after returning from their dive. Even after the strains in the depths of the Mariana Trench, the Seamaster Planet Ocean Ultra Deep passed all the tests and received the Master Chronometer certificate.

The expedition logo is located in the centre of the caseback, inside concentric circles evoking the Multi Beam sonar technology. Information such as model, reference number, certification and „tested to 15,000m 49212ft“ can also be found.

Omega’s choice of strap material drew on the brand’s experience in space: The combination of polyamide bracelet and Velcro closure is closely associated with the straps used in the Apollo missions.

Zenith Defy El Primero Fusee Tourbillon

Since the dawn of precision timekeeping, watchmakers have sought to produce timepieces that offer unfaltering performance through the use of constant force. Zenith reinterprets the fusee and chain constant force mechanism in a modernistic style in the new Defy Fusee Tourbillon.

The Defy Fusee Tourbillon is available in two distinct editions in Carbon and Platin. The first version features a light yet robust carbon case, crown and buckle head. The carbon fibre treatment even extends to the open dial, with the central skeletal element and surrounding flange ring giving off the unique simmer of this material. The second version of the Defy Fusee Tourbillon is crafted in platinum. The exposed movement provides a vibrant, voluminous view, where the mix of materials and tones add visual depth, from the anthracite base of the movement to the blued chain and tourbillon cage topped with a set of geometrical bridges in two tones.

The spoke design of the bridges is amplified by their bicolor finish, where the top satin-finished surface is given a black treatment, while its polished sides are a lighter grey rhodium tone. The layout of the bridges offers a balance of the various functions and complications. On the top half of the movement, one can admire the uniquely conceived fusee and chain constant force mechanism. On the opposite end at 6 o’clock, a tourbillon cage with an entirely new construction featuring an off-centered balance wheel makes a full rotation every 60 seconds. Like the chain, the tourbillon cage comes in a striking blue color. Positioned at the edge of the dial between 4 and 5 o’clock, a red-tipped hand indicates the power reserve, a handy feature when manually winding the Defy Fusee Tourbillon with its 50-hour power reserve.

The Defy El Primero Fusee Tourbillon is housing the new El Primero 4805 SK calibre, a manual-winding movement that follows the Defy code of avant-garde movement architecture with an open three-dimensional impact. By combining the fusee and chain mechanism with a tourbillon regulating organ, Zenith places precision at the forefront of its unique take on haute horlogerie.

The Defy Fusee Tourbillon in carbon is limited to 50 pieces, the second version in platin will be available only 10 times.

The new Alpina Seastrong Diver 300

Alpina has relaunched its Seastrong Diver 300, and, with its updated design, the watch remains true to the outstanding characteristics of the previous models. The new Seastrong Diver 300 is clearly inspired by the watch manufacturer’s legacy and is the perfect successor to the Alpina timepieces of the past centuries – especially the Seastrong “10” from the 1960s. Retro is still a hot trend in the watch industry as well as with watch enthusiasts; a trend here to stay, it seems.

An oversized case with striking curves, luminous indexes and an unidirectional rotating bezel; these are the outstanding features of the new Seastrong Diver 300. In addition, Alpina has equipped this diver’s watch with a new case with a diameter of 44 mm. It is made of either titanium or bronze and bears a PVD coating. The 60-minute-bezehl comes in grey, navy blue or black, and, as is common with diver’s watches, is uni-directional. All indexes on the bezel are coated with lume so that they are perfectly readable under water.
The dials of the new Seastrong Diver 300 are available in dark brown, grey or blue. Of course, each and every one of them is contrasting beautifully with the large, luminous indices and hands, which results in an exceptionally good legibility. The large triangle at twelve o’clock is a reference to the legendary Alpina logo. At three o’clock you’ll find a small date window, which Alpina has matched to the colours of the various dials, so it blends in perfectly.
Both the case back and the crown are screwed down. The Seastrong Diver therefore has a water resistance of 30 atm – or 300 metres.
The diver’s watch is powered by the AL-525, an automatic calibre. It operates at 28,800 vibrations per hour and provides a power reserve of at least 38 hours. The movement can be seen through the transparent case back.

Alpina supplies the Seastrong Diver 300 with a vintage leather strap. Since leather straps are not suitable for prolonged contact with water, a rubber strap is also included, making the watch a perfect companion for under water adventures.

Ochs und Junior Does It Again

The watches made by Ochs und Junior look very simple and lack much of the usual pomp of luxury watches. At the same time, they present an extremely sophisticated approach to modern watchmaking that emphasises functionality for itself. But this does not mean that watchmakers as well as watch lovers do not absolutely adore the puristic wristwatches.
The latest addition to the Ochs und Junior collection, the two time zones + date, also embodies the manufacturer’s strictly uncluttered design philosophy.

The two time zones + date shows hours and minutes in two different time zones, the date in your home timezone, running seconds and the power reserve. The big innovation in this watch is how Ochs und Junior has decided to implement the second time zone. Instead of adding an extra hand, Ochs and Junior opted for a central hour disc and replaced the traditional hour hand with one with a wedge-shaped opening. The main hand shows the local time, while the opening frames the hours of the second time zone.
The spiral date display, which runs around the outer rim of the dial, consists of 30+1 holes that are easy and intuitive to read. The small disc at twelve o’clock indicates the power reserve (the dot pointing to the right, when the watch is fully wound, and pointing to the left when the power reserve gets empty), while the small disc at six o’clock indicates the running seconds.

The Ochs und Junior two time zones + date display is powered by the Ulysse Nardin UN-118 basic movement, to which only ten additional components have been added to implement the date display and the GMT time. This automatic movement operates at a frequency of 4 Hz and provides a power reserve of up to 60 hours.
All settings are made via the crown.

The two time zones + date comes in a 42mm titanium or PVD-coated titanium or silver case. And like everything else – the dial, bracelet and the colour of the Super-LumiNova – the case material can be changed to fit the individual taste of the buyer. This is a feature, Ochs und Junior offers for all its watches, how awesome is that?
The case is water resistant up to 10 atm.

The Ochs und Junior two time zones + datum is as much fun as the other models made by the manufacturer. It is always exciting to see how Ochs und Junior can implement new functions once more simply and intuitively. And we can hardly wait to see what will be next.

DB28GS Grand Bleu: Bethunes First Sports Watch

This year, watch manufacturer De Bethune presents its first 100% sports watch. This diver’s watch is equipped with a new caliber, water-resistance to more than 100 meters and makes a lasting impression with an exceptionally good readability. De Bethune developed and designed the DB28GS Grand Bleu to be a resolutely sporty watch – while cultivating the aesthetic elegance cherished by the brand.
Just 10 years ago, De Bethune began developing timepieces with a more contemporary spirit with the first DB28. Already at that time, De Bethune’s founder and Master Watchmaker, Denis Flageollet, an outdoor sports enthusiast, felt the need to create watches adapted to an active lifestyle. In 2015, the first DB28GS was launched, followed by the DB28GS Grand Bleu, De Bethune’s first diver’s watch.

Since not only divers’ watches in particular, but sports watches in general – in every situation, in any kind of weather and under the poorest of lighting conditions – should be particularly easy to read, De Bethune developed a special lighting system for the DB28GS Grand Bleu. To illuminate the watch and the movement from the inside, the slightly bluish white light source is produced by a fully mechanical means that works on the dynamo principle. Neither electronics nor a battery is needed. A pusher at 6 o’clock activates a mechanism that provides the energy needed to light the watch.

As a diver’s watch, the DB28GS Grand Bleu is also equipped with a uni-directional rotating bezel which serves to enable accurate calculation of immersion time, as well as the transition through various decompression stops. Generally, all the numerals relating to the minutes counter are indicated on the bezel, which tends to create a more crowded visual effect. For the DB28GS Grand Bleu, these indications appear on the sapphire crystal driven by the bezel. This enables the model to remain unusually slim for a diver’s watch.
The DB28GS Grand Bleu displays central hours, minutes and seconds.

The DB28GS Grand Bleu is powered by a new movement, the 27th from the De Bethune factory. The hand-wound calibre operates at a frequency of 28,800 vph and provides a power reserve of five days.
The movement is housed in a titanium case with a diameter of 44 millimetres and a water resistance of 10 atm. De Bethune has placed the crown at 12 o’clock, and the patented system of floating lugs ensures that the watch sits perfectly on the wrist.

The DB28GS Grand Bleu is delivered with two straps: a canvas version and a striated natural rubber iteration.

News from TAG Heuer: Special Carbon Series in Black

TAG Heuer has introduced its newest and simultaneously most modern interpretation of its famous Aquaracer. The watches – three different versions overall – combine an urban look that combines comfort, durability and sportiness.
The first models of this ultra-light, hard-wearing and modern special series are the first of a collection, TAG Heuer will extend over the next months. The Carbon series also comes with the appropriate name: Aquaracer Carbone.

The dial boasts an imitation carbon effect. TAG Heuer offers the Aquaracer Cabone in three different versions, which are sporting accents in either blue, yellow or pink gold. But in these watches, black is clearly the dominating color which raises the issue of readabiltiy. But TAG Heuer didn’t skimp in terms of Super-LumiNova and yes, it’s deep grey in daylight. Which is pretty cool because it’s practically seamlessly blending into the background as long as it isn’t dark.
Over the dial lies a sapphire crystal, sporting an ingrained magnifier at the 3-o’clock position. These cyclops are always controversial and often crucial in terms of liking a timepiece or not. But that’s how it is, and may we say that the cyclops is integrating itself quite beautifully into the overall design of the Aquaracer Carbone.

The 41-mm-case is made from titanium with black PVD coating. Thanks to the random injection of carbon fibres into a resin pressed at high temperatures, each peace is unique, boasting an exclusive black and grey marbled motif. So, even if the case is not made from carbon, there is carbon in it – but I think we can all agree, the name might be a bit misleading.
Like one would expect from a diver’s watch, the TAG Heuer Aquaracer Carbone is water-resistant up to 30 atm.

The technical details are the same as in the Aquaracer, TAG Heuer has incarnated three years earlier. All models are powered by the Calibre 5. The automatic movement is working at a frequency of 4 Hz and provides a power reserve of approximately 38 hours. Since the case back is solid (also made from PVD coated titanium), the movement cannot be observed.

All three models are completed by black nylon straps with black, yellow or blue topstitching, matching the colored accents on the dials.