The Bathyscaphe grey ceramic blue dial

It’s about time to cover one of the bestselling timepieces made by Blancpain in the last years, the Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe crafted in brushed grey ceramic with a mesmerizing blue dial, reference 5000-0240-O52A.

Bathyscaphe 5000-0240-O52A

Some of you may have seen the very first (and very short) post in this blog about this popular version of the Bathyscaphe. This new report is providing more photos and information and therefore replaces the original post.

About the Bathyscaphe

Launched in 2013, commemorating the 60th anniversary of the first professional diving watch, the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Bathyscaphe became an instant success. Since then the Bathyscaphe has almost become an entire collection on its own, including the basic 38 and 43mm versions, the Bathyscaphe Chronographe, the Bathyscaphe Quantieme Complet, the Bathyscaphe Quantieme Annuel and the Jour Date 70s.

Two Bathyscaphe references have been discontinued in this short timeframe, namely both versions made in titanium. The 2014 limited edition Bathyscaphe Chronographe Ocean Commitment introduced the very attractive combination of a plasma grey ceramic case with a blue dial, and a few years later this combination entered the standard collection with reference 5000-0240, available on sailcloth or Nato strap.

One of the main aspects of this timepiece is the astonishing symbiosis between the grey ceramic case and the blue dial. Depending on light conditions both simultaneously change their appearance in perfect harmony. In bright sunshine the sunburst dial offers a shiny blue, and the ceramic case looks almost like steel. In the shade both dial and case appear more subdued.

The blue ceramic bezel with Liquidmetal inlays is keeping as close as possible to the color play of the dial. Bezel and dial are made from different materials with different finishes, so a total alignment in color and brightness is not possible.

Bathyscaphe 5000-0240-O52A

The Bathyscaphe Ceramic is powered by hand finished caliber 1315 with silicon hairspring and 5 days of power reserve, visible through a sapphire case back. The case back is pressed instead of screwed down, which is a compromise that had to made due to the ceramic material. This does not affect the water resistance of 300m, though.

About a watch made from ceramic

Talking about ceramic, there are some aspects that need to be considered when owning a ceramic watch: the material is very hard and will show almost no signs of wear even after many years. But it is brittle, so ceramic can break when enough force is applied. This is something to keep in mind not only to avoid letting the watch fall on hard surfaces, but also when changing straps.

The timepiece comes on a dark blue sailcloth or Nato strap, both with ceramic hardware/buckle. The Nato strap measures 23mm between the lugs and at the buckle, the sailcloth strap tapers to 20mm at the buckle. A ceramic bracelet is not available.

The combination of the brushed grey ceramic case with a blue sunburst dial is a compelling aesthetic combination, especially with the above mentioned “chameleon” effect. I am not at all surprised that this reference quickly became a favorite for many. Let me close this report with a close up of the astonishing blue dial:


You find the Bathyscaphe Grey Ceramic here on the Blancpain website. I hope you enjoyed the post and the photos.




4 thoughts on “The Bathyscaphe grey ceramic blue dial

    1. Theo, the case back is pressed in using gaskets to insure full water resistance. You know pressed casebacks from many other timepieces, e.g. most dress watches. Ceramic does simply not allow for a durable screw down caseback solution because the material is too hard and brittle for the thread.

  1. Thanks very much, Henrik. Got my plasma grey ceramic Bathyscaphe last week. It’s a keeper! I wonder if the earlier steel and titanium versions of the Bathyscaphe (say from 2013) also used pressed casebacks since those casebacks look the same as the ceramic caseback (12 sided shape).

    1. Congrats! You picked a really beautiful timepiece, I hope you will enjoy a lot of precious moments with it. The pressed caseback can be found only with the ceramic pieces, steel, titanium and gold have screwed down casebacks.

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