Breitling’s limited-edition SuperOcean Heritage Chronograph 125th Anniversary “diver” was first presented in June 2009. Available with three colors of dial and two types of straps (including a gorgeous Ocean Classic stainless steel bracelet,) it offers a clean look and crisp, easy to read dial. What more can you ask from what is essentially a luxury diving tool? Well, perhaps a water resistance rating better than the official “200 meters” would be great.
The SuperOcean has long been an arch-rival of a similarly styled Omega Planet Ocean series. Both models look better when worn with a business suit. Both feature similarly styled arrow-shaped hour hands and almost identical unidirectional rotating bezels. Even the general layout of the dial is almost the same (well, this one is simple: 3/4 of all dressy diving companions present on the market use the legendary Rolex Sea-Dweller and Submariner as an infinite source of inspiration.)
The only serious difference among the two chronometers is that this version bases its Caliber 23 movement on the time-proven Valjoux 7753 (it also ticks inside the recently introduced Panerai Luminor Chrono Daylight Titanium Blue Dial (ref. PAM00326) chronograph, which has so impressed me that I’ve seen it in a dream last night) while the Omega Planet Ocean stays loyal to the original Valjoux 7750 chronograph movement. Both movements are equally reliable and offer comparable levels of accuracy.
However, with all these visual similarities, the SuperOcean Heritage Chronograph 125th Anniversary somehow looks better than the Omega. Perhaps, the reason is that, with its sword-shaped minute hand, the dial sports a more balanced appearance and provides better legibility.
Also, something is menacing about those hands. While Omega’s designers sort of overdid it trying to make them more ‘exquisite’, SuperOcean’s hour hand looks like a point of an arrow, and the minute hand looks like a blade of a heavy sword.
Oh, where was I?
This particular 125th Anniversary edition will soon be selling in three new colors of its dial (Volcano black; Silver; Stratus Blue Gun) and two variations of strap: you can get it with either stainless steel bracelet featuring mesh pattern or, preferably, with a black rubber strap.
Each color variation is planned to be produced in 1000 pieces and, according to some rumors, will be officially priced at pretty much impressive (at least, for a watch that is animated by a mass-produced movement) $6000. Well, you can always get one in an online shop with a nice discount, although Breitling frowns upon this practice.
See also: IWC Aquatimer Deep Two diving instrument
Breitling SuperOcean Heritage Chronograph Limited Edition 125th Anniversary specification:
Movement: Caliber B23, Valjoux 7753-based, automatic, 25 jewels, Swiss Made
Complications: Date, bi-compax chronograph
Power reserve: 46 hours
Case: Stainless steel
Size: 46.00 mm
Case height: 14.50 mm
Dial: Volcano Black; Silver; Stratus Blue Gun
Water resistance: 200 meters
Strap: Stainless steel bracelet or rubber strap
Crystal: Sapphire, domed, anti-reflective coating on outer and inner sides
Back: Solid, engraved