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 Post subject: New SuperOcean Released
PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2022 9:27 pm 
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Hi all

What do you think about the newly released SuperOcean?
I'm not quite sure what to think about it myself. But the longer I look at the pictures the more I like them. Eventually I will have to try them on. Especially the green one is trying to grow on me :o

I like the blocky hour indexes. The minute seems oddly short but somehow it fits well into the picture.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2022 3:36 am 
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Modern and fresh look, I like the color combinations and also the fact that you can choose different sizes. Also the bracelets are all very nice. And the 300mt gives you the opportunity to wear it everyday.
All in all I like it a lot!


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2022 5:55 am 
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From a dive watch perspective, overall appears legible. Moving into details:

-Inner Hour Indexes are lume(for night), outer numerals and minute markers are not(for day and more precise). I am not sure if having 2 different indexes in a single dial for the purpose of day and night reading is necessary. Minute Hand quite a distance away from the bezel, and affects the speed of "read-off" when using the bezel. However a speedy read-off is not that critical for a dive watch as compared to a pilot or car racing watch.

-Contrast of geometry on Sec Hand(round) and Minute Hand(square). Well differentiated and Breitling's iconic style of "contrasting geometry designs" in many past models. Can look weird to many traditionalists but it's Breitling's original feature to me and functionally practical in this case. Square on minute hand too big in my opinion and makes the watch untidy. I would prefer the length of the square to be the same as the inner hour indexes. Not sure of the reason behind such dimension on the minute hand square but appears lack of detail in this case.

Overall this watch appears more as a fun watch than a serious professional watch, for those who wish to own a Breitling but doesn't want to spend too much. Actual watch seems to look better than photo. Not something I am fond of, but for the price point, overall appears acceptable.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2022 6:45 am 
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This one is a real mixed bag for me.

On the PROS side, I generally like the design. I like how it draws inspiration and pays homage to the original 2005 'Slow Motion', although the original had a MUCH cooler function than just telling the time..., but visually speaking it's similar. That said, the large rehaut/chapter ring markings are redundant on this model as they only served a purpose on the 2005 due to how the chronograph worked; here the chapter ring is nothing more than a visual nod to the 2005. Style over substance unfortunately.

It's great to see so many size options, and there are some decent colourways as well.... although the standard black and dark blue versions are my personal favourites. I also really like the new micro-adjustable clasp - looks like a Rolex/Omega hybrid, and you can't go wrong with that. (It seems Breitling have both ends of the spectrum covered in that regard now - a great cutting-edge "Glidelockesque" micro-adjustable clasp at one end, and an archaic and totally UNadjustable butterfly clasp at the other! :lol: ). The new rubber straps also look great, so no complaints there at all. So design-wise I think it's a pretty reasonable job, although I'm sure the huge square of the minute hand would be impossible to read accurately in the dark.

However, then we come onto the CONS, and there are two major issues here for me. Firstly the movement. So it's got the trusty old B17 inside which is basically an ETA2824/Sellita SW200, with its (ahem) "HUGE" 38 hours of power reserve and all the technology of 1971 which is when it was first introduced. Yes I know it's been updated since then (the ETA2824-2 came out in 1982), but at heart it's still 50 years old. I just don't understand why Breitling still can't, or won't, produce an in-house 3 hand movement. It's 13 years since they introduced the fantastic B01 chronograph movement (which, let's be honest, was a way more complicated task), so I'd have thought a 3 hander would've been a doddle in almost a decade and a half! Hell, even tiny brands like Nomos and Yema have in-house time-only movements. Come on guys!

And the second con, which is related to the first, is the price. This new SO is some 30% more expensive than the old model, despite having the same old movement and lower specs in terms of WR. In the UK, the price of the new SO starts at £3700, going upwards to over £4000. Now let's have a look at some of the competition -

- For £2750, you can have the Oris Aquis 400, complete with a state-of-the-art in-house movement with 120 hours of power reserve, and a 10 year warranty!
- Or for £2920 you can have the new Tudor Black Bay Pro which also features a pretty much state-of-the-art in-house movement, but with the added GMT functionality, and 70 hours of power reserve.
- The massively better specced in-house Tudor Pelagos (500m WR, helium escape valve, superb clasp, full titanium construction, 70 hours of power reserve) is the same price as the cheapest of the new SO's, but with the Pelagos you also get the full bracelet for the money as opposed to the Breitling's rubber strap.
- And for about £500 more, you can have the in-house co-axial Omega Seamaster Diver 300, which is METAS certified, and benefits from all the anti-magnetic tech under the sun, plus a better power reserve at 55 hours.

For me, the new SO range is about £1000-£1500 over-priced, and that's being generous considering I recently bought a very well specced, brand new, "beater" watch that's running an ETA 2824, and it cost me a mere £600. Of course, there are those who will say that in-house doesn't automatically equate to "better", and I'd agree in some respects. But ultimately no-one needs a mechanical watch these days, so IMO they should be something at least a little bit special when you start paying several thousand pounds.... and ETA/Sellita just aren't special or luxury these days. The simple fact is, certain other manufacturers are just doing it better and cheaper, and with the "dumbing down" of certain elements (like when the tachymeter track was removed from the latest Navitimer), Breitling needs to be careful they don't end up just being an "expensive fashion brand".

Judging by the comments on certain FB fan-boy groups, I'm sure these will be popular in certain quarters, but by the same token a number of my watch fanatic friends (who have no specific allegiance to Breitling, but just like nice watches in general) have all said the same thing - nice looking watches, but a hard sell at that price, given the internals.

So as I say, this is a mixed bag for me. Generally good looking, and if they had an in-house movement I'd be happy to pay the £3700 for one of the 42mm versions. And if they were around £2500 then I'd be reasonably happy to pay for one that's B17 powered.

* As an aside, I personally would've LOVED to see the 2005 properly reimagined, complete with a modified B01 to allow the original "slow motion" chronograph function to be brought back. It would also make the inner chapter ring/rehaut minute markings functional instead of just being there for show. That would've been a GREAT piece, and as far as I know, a totally unique offering in the current market.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2022 8:02 pm 
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Agree on the lack of in-house movement. It's like always pulling the brand a step back whenever it's just about to "get there".

While I am not the best fan of this model, it appears the actual look of the piece is quite nice. I personally like "polarizing designs" that are original and not just another generic looking piece that claims "timeless", as long as the details make sense to me. Overall I feel it fulfills the basic duty of a diver's watch well, even though certain details can be improved. While many might feel that it is over priced, I think the price is relatively acceptable as the brand's lower range. Having a cheaper price point does attract more buyers, but unhealthy to the brand's prestige over long term.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2022 9:30 pm 
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I'm still not sure what to think of the new Superocean collection...

What bothers me most is the wide functionless chapter ring. They should have done it with the original slow motion complication. This would have been something unique and a good reason to shrink the acutal dial like it is.

These new Superoceans just don't have the proper toolwatch vibe like the older collections had. It's hard to believe/accept Breitling replaces the complete Superocean collection with this new one. I just hope they won't apply the same treatment to the Avenger line...


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 12, 2022 11:49 pm 
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Got to say I quite like the new Superocean - haven't seen it in real life though so some judgement being reserved.

As I overthink things generally I think for what Breitling was/is trying to achieve this is about as good as we could get given what they are trying to do. For example

1. Breitling is clearly going casual/fun - hence a dive watch was released at a surf event. I love that but get others wont - cant please everyone. That also meant they want the watch thin, light and easy to wear. So the B20 movement is out for a manufacture movement. Similarly, No one other than partners Tudor and Chanel get access to the smaller Kenissi movement yet so not only would that mean the watch is thick but the 36mm couldn't get it and Breitling would look pretty silly in 2022 giving the 'mens' watch a superior movement to the 'womens' watch.

2. Likewise I agree, that old slow motion chrono is really, really cool and Im totally confident Breitling could have sold, god, dozens of them. Yeah, I'm being silly but in 2022 they just arent going to sell.

3. Coming back to the thinness and case generally - the 42 is 12.5mm and moving up to the 46 is only 13.1mm, the case and dial are quite complex and pretty much the entire watch looks a new design - someone above listed a bunch of "alternatives" that have clearly spent their money elsewhere (with the exception of the Seamaster - it really is amazing value) as their specs are excellent but the designs and finishing are pretty simple and/or old, they tend to be thick, a bit slabby etc. Now this is clearly - again - a compromise some people arent going to like, some are going to be upset Breitling seems to be choosing style over substance but otoh, want horological substance, buy a quartz watch, as soon as you choose mechanical style is substance.

In many ways this is the anti 2022 Tudor Ranger - want the best movement you can get surrounded in something so dull its almost weapons grade boring Tudor has your back. This Superocean is the photonegative - a movement running with the pack but no more but wrapped in a sexy, exciting chassis and bodywork. Personally I like the Breitling approach - once on the wrist I don't care about the movement but I wont wear a boring watch.



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2022 5:46 am 
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rocinante wrote:
Got to say I quite like the new Superocean - haven't seen it in real life though so some judgement being reserved.

As I overthink things generally I think for what Breitling was/is trying to achieve this is about as good as we could get given what they are trying to do. For example

1. Breitling is clearly going casual/fun - hence a dive watch was released at a surf event. I love that but get others wont - cant please everyone. That also meant they want the watch thin, light and easy to wear. So the B20 movement is out for a manufacture movement. Similarly, No one other than partners Tudor and Chanel get access to the smaller Kenissi movement yet so not only would that mean the watch is thick but the 36mm couldn't get it and Breitling would look pretty silly in 2022 giving the 'mens' watch a superior movement to the 'womens' watch.

2. Likewise I agree, that old slow motion chrono is really, really cool and Im totally confident Breitling could have sold, god, dozens of them. Yeah, I'm being silly but in 2022 they just arent going to sell.

3. Coming back to the thinness and case generally - the 42 is 12.5mm and moving up to the 46 is only 13.1mm, the case and dial are quite complex and pretty much the entire watch looks a new design - someone above listed a bunch of "alternatives" that have clearly spent their money elsewhere (with the exception of the Seamaster - it really is amazing value) as their specs are excellent but the designs and finishing are pretty simple and/or old, they tend to be thick, a bit slabby etc. Now this is clearly - again - a compromise some people arent going to like, some are going to be upset Breitling seems to be choosing style over substance but otoh, want horological substance, buy a quartz watch, as soon as you choose mechanical style is substance.

In many ways this is the anti 2022 Tudor Ranger - want the best movement you can get surrounded in something so dull its almost weapons grade boring Tudor has your back. This Superocean is the photonegative - a movement running with the pack but no more but wrapped in a sexy, exciting chassis and bodywork. Personally I like the Breitling approach - once on the wrist I don't care about the movement but I wont wear a boring watch.

Good to have some discussion on this one. :thumbsup:

I guess it all comes down to what's important to you as a consumer (and which target market Breitling is going after). Funny you should mention the new Tudor Ranger as I'd personally take that watch every day of the week over any of the new SO's. What some say is dull and boring design, others say is classic. Likewise what some say is a sexy, exciting chassis and bodywork, others say is nothing but style over substance. No-one is right or wrong; it all just depends on your POV.

I guess you and I represent the opposite ends of the target market spectrum! :lol: (And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that at all! :thumbsup:)

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2022 8:19 am 
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Regarding the design of the new SO - you can't discuss taste and preferences and I certainly don't want to try to convince someone that they "should like" something - it was about giving the SO an unmistakable, independent "face", rooted in the brand's DNA, it is in no way a "vintage re-edition".

Success in the market will tell us whether we were right - for years to come. The first feedback and the first sales figures are very, very promising, far beyond our wildest hopes, we already have availability bottlenecks for some variants. But whether it's just a flash in the pan or really ongoing, sustainable success in the market, we'll judge that after 24 months, not based on initial enthusiasm.

Now back to the "elephant in the room", the "ancient" B17 with the 38-hour power reserve....

The new in-house 3-hand (and several other calibers w/ additional complications in that caliber family) is massively delayed. Timetables for technical developments, industrialization processes, and even more any plans for the massive expansion of production capacities that were created before the pandemic are irrelevant today. Across all industries, worldwide - in my day job I have sleepless nights because I am now confronted with delivery times of 80 weeks and more for irreplaceable electronic components, instead of the maximum 60 days that I could previously count on.

I can't go into other brands, but it's relatively easy to develop a movement and produce it in quantities of a few hundred a year - but Breitling needs tens of thousands of movements a year, of the highest chronometer quality, with minimal technical "teething troubles". and excellent reliability.

And choosing another movement means to stock and service it for decades, worldwide, at huge costs - and I don't know which movement should be available in the necessary quantities and qualities.

The Kenissi-based B20 is much too big and thick to fit, so the Superocean would need a complete re-design, with all the terrible formal consequences.... and even then the quantities we need for this line are nowhere near available.

Wishful thinking aside - the alternative was to delay the re-launch for years - or to start with a proven, reliable movement (which doesn't just "happen to fit" into the design by chance, one of the design requirements for the in-house calibers was to serve as an upgrade option for older series ...)

Re pricing: if you add the additional costs (primarily ceramic bezels and micro-adjusting bracelet) plus current inflation, you'll find the prices remained largely unchanged.

Driver8 - strap one on. Let me know how you like them then.



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 21, 2022 8:26 am 
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now, re that "2005 properly reimagined, complete with a modified B01 to allow the original "slow motion" chronograph function to be brought back"

a multi-year project at multi-million cost. we'd have to sell thousands of that watch at FP Journe prices to break even.
I used to demand these things myself - until I learned what chronograph caliber development costs.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2022 6:05 pm 
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Driver8 wrote:
Good to have some discussion on this one. :thumbsup:

I guess it all comes down to what's important to you as a consumer (and which target market Breitling is going after). Funny you should mention the new Tudor Ranger as I'd personally take that watch every day of the week over any of the new SO's. What some say is dull and boring design, others say is classic. Likewise what some say is a sexy, exciting chassis and bodywork, others say is nothing but style over substance. No-one is right or wrong; it all just depends on your POV.

I guess you and I represent the opposite ends of the target market spectrum! :lol: (And there's absolutely nothing wrong with that at all! :thumbsup:)


Totally agree - if you're a Tudor Ranger kind of guy this watch likely isn't for you. The one point I'd fight you on (kidding - this is a fun chat) is this whole concept of style over substance, frankly in the area of mechanical watches (especially ones with a 'toolish' bent) style IS substance.

If you genuinely were interested in horological substance alone in a field/dive/pilots watch it must be quartz, probably solar, and likely a g-shock. Once you step away from that you're in fashion/cos play territory and all we are debating is what costume we are wearing. The Ranger 'style' is all movement geek with little design, the SO style is high end design with a movement that does the job (and lets be honest for us day to day the B17 does the same job as the Tudor movement).

I totally reject the idea that the Ranger has a jot more 'substance' than the SuperOcean. In fact, Id probably go the other way - I suspect there is an order of magnitude more effort in Breitling bringing the SuperOcean to market compared with Tudor and the Ranger (likely reflected in the pricing). Now, whether you personally value that effort is your call - after all whats the fun at the party if we all turn up wearing the same costume.



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PostPosted: Sun Jul 24, 2022 6:32 pm 
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WatchFred wrote:
Regarding the design of the new SO - you can't discuss taste and preferences and I certainly don't want to try to convince someone that they "should like" something - it was about giving the SO an unmistakable, independent "face", rooted in the brand's DNA, it is in no way a "vintage re-edition".

Success in the market will tell us whether we were right - for years to come. The first feedback and the first sales figures are very, very promising, far beyond our wildest hopes, we already have availability bottlenecks for some variants. But whether it's just a flash in the pan or really ongoing, sustainable success in the market, we'll judge that after 24 months, not based on initial enthusiasm.

Now back to the "elephant in the room", the "ancient" B17 with the 38-hour power reserve....

The new in-house 3-hand (and several other calibers w/ additional complications in that caliber family) is massively delayed. Timetables for technical developments, industrialization processes, and even more any plans for the massive expansion of production capacities that were created before the pandemic are irrelevant today. Across all industries, worldwide - in my day job I have sleepless nights because I am now confronted with delivery times of 80 weeks and more for irreplaceable electronic components, instead of the maximum 60 days that I could previously count on.

I can't go into other brands, but it's relatively easy to develop a movement and produce it in quantities of a few hundred a year - but Breitling needs tens of thousands of movements a year, of the highest chronometer quality, with minimal technical "teething troubles". and excellent reliability.

And choosing another movement means to stock and service it for decades, worldwide, at huge costs - and I don't know which movement should be available in the necessary quantities and qualities.

The Kenissi-based B20 is much too big and thick to fit, so the Superocean would need a complete re-design, with all the terrible formal consequences.... and even then the quantities we need for this line are nowhere near available.

Wishful thinking aside - the alternative was to delay the re-launch for years - or to start with a proven, reliable movement (which doesn't just "happen to fit" into the design by chance, one of the design requirements for the in-house calibers was to serve as an upgrade option for older series ...)

Re pricing: if you add the additional costs (primarily ceramic bezels and micro-adjusting bracelet) plus current inflation, you'll find the prices remained largely unchanged.

Driver8 - strap one on. Let me know how you like them then.


Fred, thanks so much for chiming in here and what you've said/implied starts to make sense of Breitlings communications over the past few years.

Shortly after taking over I read an interview with George Kern where I think he said it was "an open secret" Breitling was working towards an in-house 'base' movement for three handers etc. He also made a lot of noise about embracing silicon when the 1990's patents expired. Then it all went very very quiet and George has carefully stepped around this issue in the past year or so.

I think you are right to emphasize the scale of this issue with a brand like Breitling.

1. Tudor sells about 250k watches per year - looking at the catalog and what data we can get from the Morgan Stanley report (which for all its problems is the best we have to go on) Im guessing less than half, probably around a third of their production gets an inhouse movement. That means they are making 80,000-120,000 movements a year, max and that's after a decade of slowly ramping up production from probably a handful of pieces early and getting off pretty much scott free with a few issues Breitling would get crucified for. They also did it in two steps (big movement first (remember the fashion of 2010 when that movement was specced) - followed by smaller movement with same specs).

2. Breitling otoh has to launch on day one with a capacity for (Im guessing) 30-40,000 watches p/a (considering likely avenger/so sales). These movements cant be bigger than the SW200/300 (ballpark - I thinking that would fit in smaller sized cases demanded in 2022) and as you've said cant have teething issues - deserved or not Breitlings reputation is still in repair mode and wouldn't be as teflon coated as tudors (or media darling Oris which probably makes 1000 Calibre 400's a year and still has problems).

In an odd way the more successful Breitling is the harder the upgrade becomes as the stakes just keep rising.



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