There’s something about summer that changes the rules when it comes to watches. The smaller, dressy, cuff-friendly ones get a break in favor of big, bold, colorful pieces. Vintage Omega Constellations give way to Ploprofs, Reversos stand aside for Seiko Tunas, and Cartier Tanks bow out in favor of Panerais. Whether it’s the heat or lack of long sleeves to contend with, big watches thrive in the summertime. Crafter Blue, the Hong-Kong-based purveyor of rubber straps turned watch brand, knows this well. This is why the brand chose this season to introduce its latest chunky dive chronograph. The new Crafter Blue Hyperion Ocean Chronograph in Arctic Blue is here to make a splash.

A couple of years ago, the brand debuted its first iteration of the Hyperion Ocean Chronograph. It mysteriously arrived at Fratello HQ, and Lex took it for a spin. It was a remarkable watch not only due to its respectable dimensions but also to its rather impressive specs and solid feel. I also had an experience with a Crafter Blue watch when the Hyperion Ocean 600m with a green dial landed at HQ. It was a well-made diver with specs well beyond its price point. Its “Panerai Submersible meets Seiko Turtle” aesthetic was complemented by a deep green dial with enough lume to light up a small village. So, how does the latest offering from Crafter Blue measure up?

The Crafter Blue Hyperion Ocean Chronograph Arctic Blue

Well, as you might have guessed, it measures up rather nicely! That’s the short of it. Essentially, it’s an updated colorway from the original that Lex reviewed with a few design upgrades. It uses the same 42mm stainless steel case, which stands a whopping 16.9mm thick. Although the measurements do indeed seem daunting on paper, on the wrist, the watch is not as unwieldy as one might imagine. The biggest potential issue is the weight. The new Hyperion Ocean Chronograph was delivered on a solid steel bracelet. Sized to my 17.5cm wrist, this combination weighs 205g. After about a week of wear, I got used to it. But having worn my slim (and lighter) Seamaster 2254 for a couple of weeks prior, I could really feel the difference. This is why I opted to swap the bracelet for a bright orange Tropic-style strap from our shop.

Dimensions-wise, it compares to Omega’s Seamaster chronos (the older ref. 2599.80.00, not the 44 × 18mm modern references), so it’s not unreasonably sized. Judging by the fact that the Zodiac Sea-Chron also comes in at a similar size, it’s about in line with what you can expect for a dive chronograph. Looking inside, we find the same Seiko SII NE86A movement as the original model. But what’s new? Other than the steel bracelet, the novelties lie in the details. The first ones are the colorful anodized rings in the screw-down pushers. Instead of black, they’re now orange and blue, matching the watch’s dial. Instead of a flat white finish, the dial has a deep blue sunburst finish this time. Orange accents on the 12 o’clock marker, central chronograph hand, bezel pip, and regatta-timer sub-dial remain. But the running seconds sub-dial at 3 o’clock, along with the hour markers, is bright white.

Crafter Blue Hyperion Ocean Chronograph Arctic Blue on orange rubber strap

Final thoughts

Before wrapping things up, it’s worth mentioning a final handful of features. The watch’s 120-click bezel feels fantastic, and its ceramic insert is fully gradated and lumed. The date window at 6 o’clock is white with black numerals. And the case back, pushers, and crown all screw down for a water resistance rating of 200m. Unfortunately, you cannot use the chronograph underwater (hence, the screw-down pushers). The idea, revealed by the chronograph sub-dial, is that the Hyperion Ocean Chronograph is useful both on and under the water. It doubles in function as a fully splash-proof regatta timer on deck, and a 200m-rated diver should you choose to get your fins and regs on and go for a dip. Overall, the watch remains an impressive, solid, and capable offering. The new colorway is distinctive, bright, and as summery as you could expect.

The model Lex reviewed was last available on the Crafter Blue site for US$960 (on sale from the RRP of US$1,399). I would expect pricing for the new Arctic Blue model to align with the original’s RRP. Just like last time, we’ve had to piece together all the clues we’ve been able to gather regarding its release. However, according to a newsletter email sent out by the brand a few weeks ago, we should expect more details about the Hyperion Ocean Chronograph Arctic Blue’s debut in the coming weeks. In the meantime, stay tuned, and check the Crafter Blue website for more details.

Watch specifications

Hyperion Ocean Chronograph Arctic Blue
Blue sunburst with applied luminous indices; orange, blue, and gray 30-minute counter; white sub-seconds register; date window
Case Material
Stainless steel (316L) with lumed ceramic bezel insert
Case Dimensions
42mm (diameter) × 50.6mm (lug-to-lug) × 16.9mm (thickness)
Domed sapphire
Case Back
Solid stainless steel, screw-in
Seiko NE86A — self-winding integrated chronograph, 28,800vph frequency, 45-hour power reserve, 34 jewels, column wheel, vertical clutch
Water Resistance
Stainless steel three-row bracelet (20mm width) with deployant clasp and safety lock
Time (hours, minutes, small seconds), chronograph (30-minute counter, central seconds), date, 60-minute dive bezel