OceanicTime Archives

2018-12-12

Le JOUR VINTAGE DIVER collection OUT NOW

Since we saw a PREVIEW of the new Le Jour Vintage Diver collection, two new references have been added.



Joining the Vintage Diver collection is a stunning new Rose Gold variant, LJ-VD-006 as well as one with a Sunburst Grey dial, LJ-VD-005.



These two new additions will be available for shipping at the end of this month. All other models are available already.



The Le Jour Vintage Diver collection has six models on offer, of those the blue dial / blue bezel variant has already SOLD OUT.



This might come as bad news for folks that love blue, but the good news is – despite their wonderful heritage and impeccable Swiss manufacture, the Vintage Diver has a very far price-tag of just 800USD.



In addition to the attractive price-point (which is the same across the entire collection), the Le Jour Vintage Diver comes with a 40mm case diameter.



The Vintage Diver references, brand’s Superman dive watch of the 1960s with one obvious trait absent – the unique 12hr bezel indicator, which is still currently still in use and specific to Yema.



Diver’s features include: screw-down case-backs and crowns, unidirectional diver’s bezels and anti-reflective treated domed Sapphire crystals.



The Vintage Diver has a water-resistance of 300 meters. It is powered by a Swiss ETA 2824 automatic movement.

https://www.lejourwatches.ch/

2018-12-11

GRUPPO GAMMA Time Instruments VANGUARD & VANGUARD RETRO

First introduced in 2014, Gruppo Gamma's Vanguard collection works off of a retro-inspired design with contemporary touches.

Perhaps you could say that they are re-imagination of what those famous diver’s watches worn by Italian frogmen in the 1940s could have evolved into.



Gruppo Gamma’s new Vanguard has a case diameter of 44mm allowing for plenty of presence on the wrist; however with a sleeker side profile than its predecessor.

The watch case is made from one of two materials: surgical grade Stainless steel or marine grade phosphor bronze AKA CuSn8.



It is fitted with a double-domed Sapphire crystal, a screw-down case-back and crown – allowing for a depth of 200 meters.
Gruppo Gamma have built their new Vanguard & Vanguard Retro watches to a new higher standard that includes the use of a Swiss mechanical movement.



The new watches are now equipped with a Swiss made ETA 2824-2, a self-winding caliber – a true workhorse, ubiquitous in the Swiss sports watch segment and for good reason.

The markers on the Vanguard’s dials now are filled generously with the highest-quality Swiss SuperLumiNova, providing excellent visibility in the darkness.



While Gruppo Gamma’s new Vanguard inherits many of its predecessor’s design cues of its predecessor it has more distinctive character.

Signature styling cues include the extractable crown guard and case side guard. The timepiece is fitted with a premium Italian leather strap, handmade in Florence, by Simona Di Stefano.





The Vanguard can be had in stainless steel, aged steel finish and CuSn8 bronze.

For those who prefer a more old-school look there's the Vanguard Retro, which has stayed faithful to the minimalist design of the earliest Gruppo Gamma timepieces.



Intended to hark back to Gruppo Gamma’s formative years, the dial design and layout are reminiscent of the discontinued Genesis and Ascent as well as the earliest Vanguard models.



The Vanguard Retro is available also available in either Stainless steel or CuSn8 Bronze. Follow the link embedded, below for more on the new Vanguard & Vanguard Retro collections.

http://www.gruppogammawatches.com/

DEEP BLUE Master 500 GMT

Deep Blue have a new release, a 42mm GMT automatic named the Master 500 Auto Diver GMT which is equipped with a Swiss made ETA 2893-2 automatic movement.



Delivered in three actually quite similar looks, the Master 500m GMT has a 42mm in dimeter by 50mm lug-lug by 13mm thick 316L Stainless steel case.



Diver’s features include: a ceramic two-tone diver’s bezel with 24-scale, a 4mm-thick Sapphire crystal with inner AR-coating, a screw down crown and case-back and – you guessed 500m of WR.



Basic spec. of the 2893-2 includes 21 jewels and a beat-rate of 28,880 VPH. Thanks to its GMT bezel, and its GMT hand the Master 500 GMT is capable of reading up to 3x time-zones.



All hands and markers are generously applied with Swiss Superluminova. The GMT hand is available in blue, orange or white – each with matching inner-scale.



The watch comes on a Stainless steel bracelet with a push-button diver’s clasp, full and half links.



DEEP BLUE have had a number of new releases this month one of which was their 1st Bronze Diver, follow this LINK to see it, or the one embedded, below to be taken to DB’s site.

http://www.deepbluewatches.com/

2018-12-10

SEIKO Prospex Scuba 300M SBDX023

Remember the recently released DEEP FORREST? How could you forget; it’s not so often that we are treated to some green from Seiko and who doesn’t like a bit of green, eh!?

This is the same watch – not sure what it’s been dubbed but for the sake of simplicity, the Deep Forest was SBX021 and this Black Beauty – SBDX023.



SBDX023 has Seiko Dia Shield hardened Stainless steel case measuring 44.3mm in diameter with a lug-to-lug measurement of 50.5mm and a thickness of 15.4mm.



Divers features include: an inner-AR treated Sapphire crystal, a screw-down crown and case-back, anti-magnetic resistance and a water-resistance to 300m. It is also suitable for SAT-diving.



It is powered by a Seiko 26 jewel automatic mechanical 8L35 caliber with a power-reserve of 50hrs. It has a water-resistance of 300 meters and is suitable for SAT-diving.



SBDX023 comes on a full Stainless steel bracelet with a double-locking divers clasp with a single-push-button release diver’s extension system. MSRP is 320,000 JPY+TAX. It isn’t limited.

https://www.seiko-watch.co.jp/prospex/

SEIKO Prospex Diver SAMURAI Save the Ocean BLACK EDITION

SEIKO have created three new Black Editions which will join their SAVE the OCEAN family that is currently four members strong thanks the recent addition of TUNA, SBDJ045.



This is the Sammy Save the Ocean Black ref. SBDY025. Its steel brother is ref. SBDY019 or SRPC93K1 (US). It has an MSRP of 63,000JPY + tax. So, no extra cost for its DLC coating.



Basic spec. includes: a H48.4mm x W43.8mm x D13.4mm Stainless steel case with Hardlex, 200m and a 4R35 Auto.

Thoughts? These are gonna’ be super popular! Like 'em?

https://www.seiko-watch.co.jp/prospex/

SEIKO Prospex Diver TURTLE Save the Ocean BLACK EDITION

SEIKO have created three new Black Editions which will join their SAVE the OCEAN family that is currently four members strong thanks the recent addition of TUNA, SBDJ045.



This is the Turtle Save the Ocean Black ref. SBDY027. Its steel brother is ref. SBDY019 or SRPC93K1 (US). It has an MSRP of 69,000JPY + tax.



Basic spec. includes: a H48.4mm x W43.8mm x D13.4mm Stainless steel case with black DLC coating, Hardlex, 200m and a 4R36 Auto.

Thoughts? My favorite of the bunch!

https://www.seiko-watch.co.jp/prospex/

SEIKO Prospex Solar CHRONO Save the Ocean BLACK EDITION

SEIKO have created three new Black Editions which will join their SAVE the OCEAN family that is currently four members strong thanks the recent addition of TUNA, SBDJ045.



This is the Solar Diving Chrono Save the Ocean Black ref. SBDL057 which has an MSRP of 52,000JPY + tax. Its steel brother is ref. SBDL055 or SSC675P1 (US).



Basic spec. includes: a H50mm x W43.5mm x D13.8mm Stainless steel case with black DLC coating, Hardlex, 200m and V175 Solar.

Thoughts? Prefer the other two, a lot more. How bout’ you?

https://www.seiko-watch.co.jp/prospex/

2018-12-07

ZELOS Watches GREAT WHITE

What’s bigger and badder than a Mako but belongs to the same family? That might depend on whether we’re taking dive watches or sharks, right?



Carcharodon Carcharias AKA the Great White shark is certainly bigger and badder than a Mako, also belonging to the family of Mackerel Sharks.



By no happy coincidence, the latest diver from Zelos, the Great White has been designed to be a bigger and badder version of their popular MAKO dive watch.



With a case offering increased size and thickness, the Great White also goes deeper; its 44mm case is water-resistant to 1000 meters, double that of the Mako.



Like its smaller brother, the Mako, the Great White’s dial features a spiral 3D pattern that is punctuated by double markers with shark teeth at 3, 6, 9 and 12 o’clock.



A generous amount of SLN has been applied to the hands and markers of the Great White in a mix of C3 and BGW9, so perhaps it not only bigger and badder but possibly brighter, too.



A sapphire crystal and ceramic bezels provide provides the Great White with excellent scratch resistance while a Swiss Sellita SW200 automatic reliability an accuracy.



The ZELOS Great White has been released in collection of 8 variants (4 x CuSn8 bronze and 4x 316L steel) priced from 499USD. Follow the link HERE for more on the Great White.

http://zeloswatches.com/

2018-12-06

HALDOR Armis 2000m CERAMIC [hands on]

BACKGROUND This is the new HALDOR Armis 2000m, released as a collection of three models that include: the Armis 2000m HHC, DLC and Ceramic.

The Armis is the Slovenian brand’s second model and one which follows in the footsteps of their popular debut diver, the ABISSI.

If I remember correctly, I had some pretty good things to say about the Abissi so let's see what I make of the Armis.



ARMIS The Armis collection of 3 includes this model, the Ceramic named so after the ceramic diver's bezel that it is equipped with, the HHC taking its name from the HALDOR Hard Coating that its case (and also the case of the Armis Ceramic) is finished with, and the DLC named so after its black Diamond Like Carbon treated case.

The case and all of it components such as its: bezel, case-back, crown and bracelet (incl. clasp) have all been treated with HALDOR Hard Coating.



HHC (Haldor hard coating)
is a special hardening process designed to increase the scratch-resistance and hardness of steel.

The process creates a hardened barrier of roughly 25 microns deep on the upper layer of the steel making it considerably harder.



HALDOR’s Hard Coating has about 2000HV (Vickers) making it 7 times harder than normal Stainless steel.

As the hardening process is carried out before the steel cools, it creates a protective layer on the steel, making the surface of the watch significantly more resistant to scratches.



DESIGN The Armis has quite a familiar style not so different in its DNA from some other models also designed in Germany as it is.

So perhaps we couldn't really say that the Armis brings anything new to the table in terms of style. However with that said, the Armis does have a look that has become synonymous with some of the more noteworthy German dive watch brands such as Sinn, Laco or even H20.



This is a very rugged yet understated looking watch that should happily satisfy fans of the above brands (Sinn in particular) but who are perhaps on a more modest budget.

The watch’s bead-blasted finish as well as the additional HHC surface treatment go a long way to giving the Armis its toolish aesthetic while the glossy black ceramic and flat sapphire crystal help to give it a more premium feel.



DIVE The Armis 2000m is first and foremost a diver's watch. It is endowed with all the types of features that one would expect on a modern dive watch.

A 120-click unidirectional bezel with a ceramic inlay and luminous dive-time scale, a 4.5mm thick sapphire crystal with AR-treatment, a Helium Escape Valve (left lateral side), a screwed case-back and crown and a substantial 2000 meters of water-resistance.



In addition to the above, the Armis also benefits from Magnetic Field Protection, shielding it from magnetic fields. Its movement is housed inside a Faraday Cage protecting it up to 4.800 ampere per meter (A/m).

BACK The Armis case-back is made from solid steel and like all other case components benefits from HHC treatment. Rather aptly it is engraved with a coat of arms with shield, crossed swords and anchor.



DIAL The dial of the Armis is available in any color so long as it's black. This black background creates the perfectly contrasting canvas for its white luminous indexes and its set of broad sword hands.

The indexes which are a mixture of rectangular and trapezoidal shapes have been applied with white-colored, Swiss BGW9 SuperLuminova which emits a bright blue light - as have the hands, including the seconds hand.

A short and stubby hour hand has been paired with a long red minute hand so that there can be absolutely no ambiguity when reading dive-time.



Safe for a white date wheel, white minutes track and a nominal amount of dial text, the Armis has as clean a dial as you could ever wish for. The dial design suits the overall look of the watch, well but personally I find it a little uninspiring.

MOVEMENT Haldor haven't skimped on anything on this watch; its movement is no different. Powering the Armis 2000m Ceramic is a Swiss Made ETA 2824-2 in Top grade form which means its accuracy is almost Chronometer-like thanks to its tuning to 5-adjustments.



BRACELET The Armis comes on solid stainless steel link bracelet with HHC protective treatment. The links have a sort of H-shape to them; I'm not sure if they were designed like this or whether it was a happy coincidence when Haldor were sourcing the bracelet but it works.

The bracelet links are held together by HEX screws rather than nasty old flat-head screws. It is fitted with a push-button clasp with a diver's extension.



I've encountered tons of similar clasps, this works as well as any of them, but it feels quite light. Not sure if that's good or bad - depends on your personal preference, I guess.

KIT The Armis was delivered in what I'd call a medium quality dry case. Inside the case was the Armis along with an additional Italian rubber diver's strap, a tool and warranty card.



FIT ‘n’ FINISH What we have in the Armis is a German designed, Swiss made diver's watch produced by a small Slovenian brand. Geography aside, I really can't fault the Armis and as much as I don't like to pick holes in watches (it's my job to do so), I have really struggled today.

The HHC bead-blasted finish is consistent throughout, even the gaps between the bracelet links look good. The bezel has a nice smooth action (it's not like a Rolex but it's good), the bezel and crown have been tightly secured. Better quality and higher performing HEX screws have been used throughout.



Quickly, going back to the case finish (which as mentioned is nice and even) – please be aware that this type of finish is the complete antithesis of bling. So if you want something blingy, the Armis is not it.



THOUGHTS The HALDOR Armis 2000m Ceramic is without question a very nicely put together and capable dive watch.

Stylistically it's a little too safe for me, not boring but kind of generic in its look and a little soulless but then again it should appeal greatly to those with an appreciation for more technical looking tool divers. This is obviously subjective.



However, what it lacks in originality it certainly makes up for in terms of features.

You get a 2000M diver boasting: case hardening treatment, anti-magnetic protection and an ETA Top Grade movement. It even says Swiss made on the dial for those that consider this an important selling point. For all its German styling, Swiss manufacturing and Slovenian heritage, it is ultimately a Euro Diver, not a famous one but a good one that offers value.


©OceanicTime

PRICE Talking of Euros, the Armis 2000m Ceramic has a 650 euros price-tag + VAT within the EU. I think this is fairly reasonable asking price considering its high level of specification.

If you aren't quite on a Sinn budget, this will certainly go a long to giving you a bit of a taste of what a German tool diver offers. What do you think?

This watch was loaned to OceanicTime for the purposes of this review. Follow the link embedded in the HALDOR logo, below for further information.