Omega Ploprof Summer Blue – the return of the beast

Omega Ploprof Summer Blue – the return of the beast

Borna Bošnjak

There are those watches that instantly confirm someone is an enthusiast. In my early days of watch fanaticism, I would spot a Sub here and a Speedy there on my uni campus, but I’ll never forget the guy that wore this enormous watch on a shark mesh bracelet with a big crown protector and orange protrusion. It was, of course, an Omega Ploprof, and I have no doubt that had I been the watch nerd I am today, I would’ve rudely interrupted his study session to ask “That’s a Ploprof, right?” The reason for this personal retrospective is Omega’s return to form when it comes to the Ploprof, bringing back the model into their current offering as part of the Summer Blue 75th anniversary of the Seamaster celebrations.

To those that are unfamiliar, the Ploprof of today started life as the Seamaster 600 in the late 1960s, with a monobloc case that didn’t even bother with including a helium escape valve. Instead, the boffins at Omega engineered it so that helium wouldn’t enter the case in the first place, marketing it squarely at professional saturation diving, hence the name – derived from plongeur professionnel. The big novelty of the Ploprof Summer Blue isn’t just the fact that it’s a return for the model, but also that it returns in its original case dimensions and monobloc construction.

omega seamaster ploprof 1200m summer blue case profile 2

Since the Ploprof features the same dimensions as the 1970s original, it must mean it’s fairly compact, no? Quite the contrary. The original (and all of its subsequent iterations) was famous for being a hulking beast of a thing, so much so that Omega looked to produce it in titanium, which ultimately proved too costly due to material shortages. The Ploprof Summer Blue has that same round-peg-in-a-square-hole look, measuring 55mm across, inclusive of the huge left-handed crown guard, with a surprisingly compact 45mm lug-to-lug. The thickness is also a manageable 15.5mm, but this is one of those watches where you can know the measurements down to a micron, and yet won’t know how it actually wears until you put it on.

omega seamaster ploprof 1200m summer blue wrist

In perhaps a more subtle nod to the 600, which ended up using a COMEX-inspired “Uranus steel” (today known as 904L), the Summer Blue opts for Omega’s proprietary O-Megasteel. The alloy sports improved hardness, non-magnetic properties, and corrosion-resistance, making it the ideal choice for a saturation diver, first used in the Planet Ocean Ultra Deep. Rather than going for a ceramic insert which is the norm in luxe divers, Omega opted for a sapphire one for the bi-directional bezel which is matched in colour by the bezel-locking pusher on the right-hand side of the case.

omega seamaster ploprof 1200m summer blue dial close up

Unlike Ploprofs of the past which were all work and little play, the Summer Blue’s colourway leans more into consumer tastes, forgoing bright orange accents and flat, legible dials for a blue-on-blue-on-blue look. The signature dial and bezel insert hash marks are still there, as are the broad plongeur hands, though all now follow a lovely gradient emanating from the pinion and darkening towards the bezel.

omega seamaster ploprof 1200m summer blue caseback 2

Bringing it in line with modern Seamaster divers, the Ploprof Summer Blue is equipped with the Calibre 8912, an automatic, co-axial escapement, METAS-certified movement. It beats at an unusual 3.5Hz and features a 60-hour power reserve, as well as what Omega calls a “time zone function”. All it means is that the user can adjust the hour hand in single-hour increments, without stopping the watch – neat. You won’t be seeing any of its arabesque striping, however, as the aforementioned monobloc case has no display caseback to speak of, instead sporting a Poseidon scene surrounded by a ridged ring – another nod to the original, where the ridges were meant to hold the case in place on the wrist.

Omega Seamaster Ploprof 1200m Summer Blue pricing and availability

The Omega Seamaster Ploprof 1200m Summer Blue will be available from November 2023 onwards. Price: A$23,650, CHF 12,500

Brand Omega
Model Seamaster Ploprof 1200m Co-Axial Master Chronometer Summer Blue
Reference Number 227.32.55.21.03.001
Case Dimensions 55mm (W) x 15.5mm (T) x 45mm (LTL)
Case Material O-Megasteel
Water Resistance 1200 metres
Crystal(s) Sapphire
Dial Gradient sunburst blue
Lug Width 24mm
Strap Perforated blue rubber, steel pin buckle
Movement Calibre 8912, in-house, co-axial escapement, METAS
Power Reserve 60 hours
Functions Hours, minutes, seconds
Availability November 2023
Price A$23,650, CHF 12,500