Omega Watches are iconic in its own right. Those who have a basic appreciation for luxury timepieces would easily include this brand among the most recognized in the world. The company was founded in 1848 by Louis Brandt in La Chaux-De-Fonds, Switzerland. In its 170 years since then, Omega has been a part of humankind’s most historical events. From the deep depths of the planet’s oceans all the way to outer space, it has amazingly been present in one way or the other.
This article will present some notable models that have been part of the journey so far.
1967 Omega Speedmaster Professional Chronograph
Omega was the first watch brand to make it to the moon on July 21, 1969. This was worn by Buzz Aldrin as he stepped out unto the moon’s surface during the Apollo 11 mission. The same model was also brought along by Neil Armstrong though was left on the Lunar Module. He decided to keep it there because the Module’s electronic timing system was defective. Aldrin’s exact watch however was said to have been stolen along with other personal belongings upon his return. Fortunately, Armstrong’s Speedmaster was saved from the same fate and is now with Washington D.C.’s National Air and Space Museum.
Those who would like to own a piece of history would be pleased to know that the design has not changed much since Speedmaster line debuted in 1957. Otherwise known as the Moonwatch, today’s Speedmaster Professional Chronograph model is also powered by a manual-winding mechanism. The most recognizable difference would be the bracelet, which appears to have been made of velcro for the American astronauts. Present day models come with steel bracelets, is 42 mm in diameter and is water resistant up to 50 meters. The Smithsonian’s space curator Dr. Jennifer Levasseur is quoted as saying, “Omega has always been the official watch of NASA. That is particularly true when it comes to spacewalking. No other watch has ever been flight-qualified by NASA.”
1948 Omega Seamaster line
From the far reaches of space to the bottom of the planet’s oceans, Omega can validly claim it has been a part of such voyages. The company introduced the Seamaster, its longest running product line to commemorate its 100th year anniversary. It was a post-war dive watch which interestingly has its roots in the Omega Marine model of 1932. The Seamaster went on to be a part of historical diving achievements. Here are some of its different models:
- Seamaster 300 – Worn by Jacques Costeau and his team in 1963 during the Precontinent II experiment to confirm that divers can live underwater for extended periods of time in the Red Sea.
- Seamaster 600 – Part of the 1970 Janus II exploration setting a world-record dive of 253 meters in the Ajaccio Gulf.
- Seamaster 1000 – Attached to the Beaver Mark IV’s robotic arm as it dove to the depth of 1,000 meters.
Today, the Seamaster is popularly known as the James Bond watch. It first appeared on the wrist of Pierce Brosnan in 1995 when he starred Golden Eye. This was a Seamaster Professional 300 model. The present day 007 Daniel Craig alternates between a Omega Seamaster Diver 300M and a Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M. This product line however is also associated with the 1971 Seamaster Ploprof design. It was initially water-resistant up to 600 meters though is now able to withstand depths of up to 1,200 meters.
1952 Omega Constellation
It has undergone some changes since 1952 though has maintained its elegant looks and extremely precise movements. There were different finishing’s available. The Constellation came in gold and steel while the Constellation Deluxe appeared only in gold. It was the Constellation Grand Luxe however that provided a more refined look which had a gold and platinum finish. The collection eventually evolved into 1982’s Constellation Manhattan with its iconic four griffes which appeared to be holding the watch bezel in place. There are different variations of this design today. It comes with Constellation Manhattan’s quartz movement technology and its refined feel.
1967 Omega De Ville
This was originally part of the Seamaster family in the 1960s before it eventually branched out into an independent line in 1967. Its simplicity and classic design aspects give a timeless quality to it. Omega combined this with modern elements to produce an award-winning watch collection. The De Ville was given the Grand Prix Triomphe de l’Excellence Européenne as well as six “Golden Roses” during the Baden-Baden design awards in the 1970s. In spite of these accolades, it is one of the most underappreciated among Omega Watches today.
Its current De Ville Prestige design would indicate that its past recognition is still very much deserved. The collection undoubtedly upholds the classy and stylish aspects that this best-selling Omega Watches was quite known for. It maintains a date display at the 3 o’clock position and is a handsomely balanced timepiece.