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Two newer elements that they share are a ceramic bezel and a new system in the movement. More on that in a few seconds. The new style of ceramic bezel debuted this year in the two models. The Spacemaster has a polished ceramic bezel, while the Black version has a matte finished bezel. Each has lume inside of the bezel which is nice. Another difference is on the crystal. Once again Ball has given the Hydrocarbon model a cyclops magnifier window on the sapphire crystal over the date. I happen to like these, but not everyone does. They are designed to make it easier to read the date.

In most instances I would complain that the date disc should match the dial color and be black. However, here Ball was trying to match the light color of the hour indicators, so there is a reason they chose white for the date disc. Yellow accents are on the dial in a few places which includes the “Chronometer” label, seconds hand, and minute indicator on the flange ring. I love the relatively clean look of the dial and then the busier look of the flange ring. It makes for an attractive, and purposeful-feeling contrast.

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With a high degree of legibility, a lot of people are going to be drawn to this Engineer Hydrocarbon Black watch. Inside is a Ball-modified 2892-2 automatic. In addition to the movement being COSC Chronometer certified, the movement has Ball’s new SpringLock system over the escapement. SpringLock is a cage that sits over the balance wheel and reduces the effect of vibration shock on accuracy by something like 66%. The case is also quite anti-magnetic which is nice. Lots of durability in here.

On the back of the case is one of those nice relief style engravings. Once again Ball offers no indication on the watch itself of what you are seeing. I’ve mentioned this in the past and think it is something that they should consider (among other brands). Imagine someone picking up this watch 30 years from now. How would they go about guessing the name of the dude pictured on the back of the watch? The only hint is that he is climbing. Of course anyone at Ball today will know the answer because it is a depiction of one of their current brand ambassadors. The gentleman is Alex Honnold, a talented rock climber best known for not using safety equipment such as ropes. Now you can be just like him! Price is $3,999.

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