Month: January 2018
As Baselworld opens, Omega Replica De Ville Chief Executive Stephen Urquhart talked to Migros Magazine about the upwardly mobile brand, which has price points between CHF 6,000 and 9,000, and produces 500,000 Co-Axial movements a year.
Swatch Group created a buzz last December when it announced new certification based on research carried out for Omega’s Co-Axial movements, which now withstand magnetic fields up to 15,000 gauss. The brand didn’t pluck this figure out of thin air: it corresponds to the magnetic field generated by a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner. To give some idea of scale, Switzerland’s NIHS standards require resistance up to 60 gauss in order for a watch to qualify as anti-magnetic. This new Master Co-Axial Officially Certified label, to give it its full name, mirrors the strategy of a brand that is building on a solid base of in-house technology to steadily up its game.
The importance of branding
“It’s in the history and DNA of the brand,” says Omega Replica Hour Vision Chief Executive Stephen Urquhart in an interview to Migros Magazine. “Those who don’t know this history well only remember the difficult times, thirty years ago. Far too many styles, quartz, price points between CHF 1,000 and 2,000 compared with CHF 6,000 to 9,000 today. It’s firstly the quality of the product, with successes such as Planet Ocean and Speedmaster, as well as progress made in-house with our own Co-Axial movement that justify this more premium positioning, which has itself led to a complete revamp of our distribution.”
The brand effectively operates a more selective distribution strategy, having slashed its network of some 8,000 retailers to roughly 3,000 today, all the while increasing the number of Omega stores worldwide to 349, a third of which are exclusive. “In our segment, we’re commercially obliged to reinforce our own-name network,” says Stephen Urquhart. “We live in an age of branding, where people are more inclined to buy a name than a particular watch. Right or wrong, that’s the way it is, and we have to factor this in to how we sell our products.”
A position few can challenge
Urquhart is very clear on another point: without Swatch Group, the high hopes invested in the brand would never have materialised. “Not because it’s a multinational, but because it’s a major industrial group with important in-house resources, particularly at Nivarox [a Swiss manufacturer of oscillators and escapements] and in the R&D division at Swiss movement-maker ETA. They both played a key role in developing the Co-Axial movement. Following Nicolas Hayek’s brilliant intuition to acquire the patent for this technology, it took us just nine years to transform it into an industrially-produced mechanical movement.”
And not just any production either. While Omega Replica Seamaster is clearly on the cusp of Haute Horlogerie, it stands by what has become a virtually unassailable position. “We have a tourbillon movement which we developed something like twenty years ago, and that we intend keeping,” says Stephen Urquhart, “but this isn’t Omega’s vocation. Furthermore, we’re part of a group with a high level of vertical integration, and it would make no sense for us to enter a segment which other Swatch Group brands such as Breguet and Blancpain already occupy. Technically speaking though, we could do it. We produce 500,000 extremely complex Co-Axial movements each year. From an industrial point of view, not many brands can claim as much.”
It is no secret that besides blogging about watches, I also love to collect watches — especially iconic watches like Replica Omega Speedmaster Professional. I own several of the last model. Ever since I bought my first Speedmaster I have been hooked on this mens Omega replica watches. Not only do I love the design of this chronograph (one of the most clean chronograph dials around); I also like its connection to the Apollo space program.
As you know, Omega has produced quite a few limited editions based on the original Speedmaster Professional. Some like these limited editions, others don’t. However, the fact is that some of these limited editions do appreciate in market value quite well after a few years. One of these models is the Omega Speedmaster Professional “Snoopy Award.” My professional career started around the time this model was introduced (2003), so it was only a lack of funds that prevented me from buying Speedmaster Snoopy back then. Ever since, I have longed for one, but also noticed that over the years they became increasingly difficult to find, at least for a reasonable price. Last year, I decided to go for it despite the high price (compared to that of a standard Omega Speedmaster Professional). I justified the purchase by telling myself that the longer I’d wait, the more expensive it would get, anyway, right? You can read about the efforts I made to obtain the Speedmaster Snoopy here. After showing my precious new Speedmaster Professional with a Snoopy (turned into an astronaut) to some people, a number of them asked why I wanted a cartoon character on the dial of my authentic Omega replica watches. I was already aware that many people had this perception of the Speedmaster with the Snoopy dial, also given the fact that it was initially sold to a lot of women (women seem to love Snoopy a lot).
If you are a Speedmaster aficionado as well, and you know a thing or two about the Apollo missions, you probably are already familiar with the use of Snoopy by NASA. In 1968, NASA chose the famous beagle as an icon to act as a sort of “watchdog” over its missions. In the same year, NASA decided to use a sterling silver Snoopy pin as a sign of appreciation to NASA employees and contractors together with a commendation letter and a signed framed Snoopy certificate. Each of the sterling silver Snoopy label pins has been flown during a NASA mission. Cartoonist Charles M. Schulz, who created the “Peanuts” comic strip (featuring Snoopy and Charlie Brown) was a supporter of the NASA Apollo missions and agreed to let them use “Snoopy the astronaut” at no cost and even drew the Snoopy figure for the sterling silver label pin.
In May 1969, the Apollo 10 mission flew to the moon to do the final checks in order for the following mission, Apollo 11, to land on the Moon. The Apollo 10 mission required the LM (lunar module) to check the moon’s surface from nearby and “snoop around” to find a landing site for Apollo 11. Because of this, the Apollo 10 crew (Gene Cernan, John Young and Thomas Stafford) named the LM “Snoopy.” The Apollo CM (command module) was nicknamed “Charlie Brown.” Fast-forward to 1970. In the interim, humans had set foot on the moon and, about one year later, the Apollo 13 mission was meant to bring another team of NASA astronauts to the Moon (Lovell, Swigert and Haise). The mission’s objective was to explorer a certain area on the moon called the Fra Mauro formation. It didn’t get that far, as there was an explosion on board the service module at approximately 200,000 miles distance from Earth.
NASA’s ground control came up with a solution in the end, which required the astronauts to get creative with some materials on board their module. After fixes were made and all systems worked (more or less) again, the crew started their journey to Earth. This is the really quick version of the story of course; the entire adventure is depicted in the 1995 movie, Apollo 13, starringTom Hanks (an avid Speedmaster wearer himself, probably becoming one after his role in this movie). Now comes the part where the Speedmaster played an important role. The Apollo 13 crew needed the Omega Replica Speedmaster watch, first to time ignition of the rockets to shorten the estimated length of the return to Earth, and secondly, to time the ignition of the rockets to decrease speed and raise the flight path angle for re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere. This second operation was crucial, since any mistake in the timing could have led to an incorrect entry angle and, as a result, potential disaster for the crew. As explained before, NASA used the Snoopy award for special contributions and outstanding efforts from both NASA personnel and contractors. On October 5th, 1970, NASA gave the Omega Speedmaster a Snoopy award to acknowledge the crucial role the watch played during the Apollo 13 mission.
In 2003, Omega introduced the Speedmaster Professional “Snoopy Award” to commemorate this 1970 milestone. Although the Swiss Omega replica watches was a limited (and numbered) edition, Omega produced a whopping 5,441 pieces of the Speedmaster Snoopy. The number has to do with the 142 hours, 54 minutes and 41 seconds that the mission lasted. A bit of a stretch, in my opinion, but a nice idea. Omega’s reason for introducing this watch 33 years after the Apollo 13 mission, and being awarded with the Snoopy, is unknown to me. Based on the brand’s other limited editions, I would have expected such a release on a 30th or perhaps 35th anniversary rather than a 33rd. Despite the relative high number of Snoopy Speedmasters out there, you’ll have to search to find one at a decent price. Also, beware of Snoopy Speedmasters that had the dial and caseback fitted later on (Omega delivered them to service centers as spare parts). Always make sure you buy a Speedmaster Snoopy with the original anthracite (Snoopy) box, certificate of authenticity (with matching number on the caseback). There should also be a copy of the original Snoopy appreciation certificate with the watch.
So now you know. When there is a Snoopy on an Replica Omega Speedmaster dial, it actually means something. In the end, of course, one need not be versed in all this history to purchase and appreciate this gold Omega replica watches; one may just be a fan of Snoopy.
To accompany its highly successful “Dark Side of the Moon” collection, Omega launched the Omega Speedmaster “Grey Side of the Moon” last year. Fashioned from ceramic and platinum, the watch features several design elements that distinguish it from other Omega Replica watches.
The watch’s look is inspired by the lunar dust that captured the footprints of the Apollo astronauts in the iconic images beamed back to Earth. When creating this watch, Omega Replica Seamaster had to employ a special process to capture the color of the lunar surface. The ceramic material starts out white, but it takes on the required darker hue in a high-temperature plasma furnace. Exposed to a proprietary mix of gasses at a temperature of 36,000 degrees Fahrenheit for three hours, the ceramic emerges in a shimmering grey. This unique ceramic is used to create the case, caseback, bezel, crown, pushers and buckle of this 44.25-mm timepiece.
In another first for Omega, the engraved tachymetric scale on the bezel is filled with Super-LumiNova, making it highly legible in all lighting conditions. The “Ω” symbol on the crown is also filled with the luminescent material. The dial of this new Omega Speedmaster is sandblasted 950 platinum, and two integrated platinum subdials distinguish this model from its legendary “Moonwatch” predecessor. The subdial at 3 o’clock incorporates both the 12-hour and 60-minute chronograph counters, for intuitive reading of the elapsed time. The continuous seconds appear at 9 o’clock. The dial is protected by a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment on both sides. The Speedmaster “Grey Side of the Moon” is presented on a grey leather strap. Red stitching on the underside of the strap complements the red accents on the in-house Omega Co-Axial caliber 9300 movement, which is visible through the beveled sapphire crystal caseback. This movement is fitted with an Si14 silicon balance spring for improved timekeeping performance under all conditions. The Replica Omega Speedmaster “Grey Side of the Moon” is offered with a four-year warranty and is delivered in a special presentation box. The watch is priced at $12,000.
The light coral-coloured dial of the new Constellation Pluma recalls the halcyon days of summer.
The Constellation family has long been admired for its elegant yet understated design and is distinguished by the state-of-the-industry timepieces that combine innovation with style. Last year, Omega Replica Constellation unveiled its collection of Constellation Pluma timepieces characterised by the unique design engraved on their mother-of-pearl dials. These sophisticated watches take their name from the Latin word for feather, subtly hinting at the delicate design that accentuates its most striking element.
This year, Omega Replica De Ville has unveiled an evocative interpretation of the Constellation Pluma with a light coral-coloured dial that is reminiscent of the warm sunshine on a summer day. Similar to its sisters, this 27 mm timepiece is decorated with 11 diamond indexes in 18K gold holders and a soft-wavy pattern that flows between the iconic claws on the bezel. Its polished and facetted central hour, minute and seconds hands are crafted from 18K gold and coated with white Super-LumiNova, so the time can be read in a variety of lighting conditions.
The 18K red gold bezel of this ladies’ wristwatch is paved with 32 full-cut diamonds, adding to the overall style of this piece. This Constellation Pluma is presented on a bracelet with brushed stainless steel links and polished 18K red gold bars. The Omega Replica Hour Vision Co-Axial calibre 8520 at its heart is visible through a domed scratch-resistant caseback and the precision and reliability of this mechanical movement is such that the timepiece is offered with a full four-year warranty.
Imagine the scene: the sun is setting in Los Cabos, Mexico. The hero is George Clooney. The guest star is Omega’s Replica Speedmaster ’57watch.
A new treat awaits each new day. With its pick of windsurfing, kayaking, snorkeling or scuba diving activities, Los Cabos is a water-sports paradise. This region—the jewel of Mexico—stretches from Cabo San Lucas to San José del Cabo, and is a popular replica Omega destination with tourists looking to relax or make the most of nature and life.
It is here that George Clooney straddles his Triumph Bonneville T100 and clocks up mile after mile on the tarmac, his Omega Speedmaster ’57 setting the tempo of his road trip. The Omega replica watches stands out for its polished and satin-brushed case middle featuring a satin-brushed bezel with tachymeter scale. Its central hours and minutes hands have been created in a “broad arrow” style and coated with Super-LumiNova. Its heart beats to the rhythm of the OMEGA Co-Axial 9300/9301 caliber, equipped with a silicon balance-spring. And its quality and reliability are such that it comes with a four-year warranty.
So if Omega Speedmaster Replica this chronograph tells you you’ve broken the record for the longest siesta, you can definitely believe it!
Omega has a long time partnership with the Emirates Team New Zealand (ETNZ). In 1995, Omega started with the Sir Peter Blake’s American’s Cup campaign and again in 2000. You might remember the Replica Omega Seamaster 300M America’s Cup edition with white gold bezel from that time (see below). Also after Sir Peter Blake’s untimely death in 2001, Omega kept on supporting the ETNZ.
Omega Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ
The last Omega Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ was introduced in 2013 and now Omega shows us the piece for the 35th America’s Cup World Series that will take place in 2017. With this new Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ chronograph watch, Omega celebrates their partnership with the Emirates Team New Zealand.
This rugged sports watch has a number of typical Omega Seamaster 300M features, like the unmistakably case shape that cheap Omega replica watches uses since 1993, a black ceramic unidirectional rotating bezel and a crown located at 10 o’clock to operate the helium valve. The case is made of Grade-5 titanium and measures 44mm in diameter, a tad bit bigger than the older Seamaster 300M 41.5mm models.
At first I though the dial was made of platinum due to the color and the very fine grain. However, you never know from press images, it is actually made of Grade 5 titanium. Just like the case.
As you can see on the dial of the Seamaster 300M ETNZ , the minute counter at 3 o’clock has a 5-minute indicator for the regatta countdown. A very simple but effective way to start the regatta timer. So, no specific countdown mechanism is needed, just a push on the button and the scale will tell you when the race will start. The hour recorder at 6 o’clock has a neat shaped hand, which resembles one of those sailing flags.
Inside this Omega Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ is the caliber 3330 movement, featuring the Co-Axial escapement and a Si14 silicon balance spring. The movement is chronometer certified (-4/+6 seconds a day deviation allowed). The caseback doesn’t show the movement but instead has been embossed with the official ETNZ logo.
The Omega Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ has a retail price of CHF 6500 Swiss Francs and will be delivered this month to the markets.
Former Seamaster 300M America’s Cup models
We already showed you the first model of the Omega Seamaster 300M America’s Cup with the white gold bezel. That one is pretty sought-after right now but can still be found once in a while with an interesting price tag, some times for even lower prices than the original Omega Seamaster 300M ‘Bond’ 2531.80. This reference 2533.50.00 Seamaster 300M America’s Cup model was limited to 9999 pieces world wide and introduced in 2000. Sir Peter Blake (skipper of the winning Team New Zealand at the time) was already an Replica Omega Classic ambassador since 1995.
Clearly based on the original Seamaster 300M that was introduced by Omega in 1993, the America’s Cup already had a matching date disc wheel that you see now so often and was engraved in the case band. At that time, the Co-Axial movement was only found in the De Ville model (caliber 2500). This Seamaster 300M was based on the caliber 1120 movement, the same as used in the ‘base’ model 2531.80.
The next Omega Seamaster 300M America’s Cup was introduced in 2002 and was the reference 2594.50, a stainless steel chronograph model (caliber 3303 with column-wheel movement). There was also a titanium model and a titanium/tantalum/gold model. See the image below from Jean-Michael Mala for the all stainless steel version. This model was still more or less based on the original Seamaster 300M Chronograph series, but with an upgraded movement (no longer a Valjoux 7750 in the chronographs) and a Speedmaster-style bracelet. The diameter was also 41.5mm.
Not long after, Omega introduced the Seamaster Racing Chronometer. A watch with a real regatta countdown timer (10 minutes, the preparation signal with blue 5 minute indicators and the starting signal with red 5 minute indicators). This particular watch was co-developed by the Team New Zealand and introduced in 2003/2004. Even though this watch isn’t marked as an America’s Cup watch, it was used in several advertisement stating ‘The America’s Cup Choice’. This model had a caliber 3602A movement and the case measured 44mm. Available in stainless steel with a steel bracelet or with a rubber bracelet and available in titanium with titanium or rubber bracelet. Image below is from the original press release.
In 2013, Omega introduced the Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ America’s Cup. Similar to this year’s model, but with a different look. In stainless steel and either with red and black or yellow and black color schemes. Fitted with Omega’s caliber 3330 Co-Axial chronograph movement and limited to 2013 pieces only. The watch came on a stainless steel bracelet and with the rubber strap (as pictured below). This 44mm model is basically identical to this year’s model for the 35th America’s Cup World Series in 2017.
And now in 2015 latest replica Omega introduces the Seamaster Diver 300M ETNZ, a beautiful 44mm titanium America’s Cup watch with a ceramic bezel.
Monochrome’s 2015 Baselworld Predictions: Omega Replica Watches we Hope to See (Including a New Railmaster)
Yes, we at Monochrome-Watch plead guilty! We are recidivists. We’ve done it before with Rolex. We did it again with Tudor. Now, it’s time for us to share with you our predictions for what could (very well) be the watches that Omega will introduce this year at Baselworld. Last year the brand teased us with several videos and darkened photos that suggested a new Omega Seamaster 300. Fortunately, our predictions were quite accurate and Omega came in with the Master Co-Axial edition of the SM300. This year, we are including in our Omega 2015 Novelties some cool watches that could very well be there in two weeks.
The re-issue of the Omega Railmaster
This one is nearly too obvious. The first Omega Railmaster was part of a collection of 3 professionally-oriented watches launched in 1957 – a collection that includes the Omega Speedmaster CK2915, the Omega Seamaster 300m CK2913 and the Omega Railmaster CK2914. The first one was a racing chronograph that became an official racing timekeeper, the second was Omega’s answer to the Rolex Submariner (with a much higher water-resistance) and the last on was the answer to the Rolex Milgauss and a watch made for scientists and people working in magnetic fields.
If you look back at the two previous editions of Baselworld,Replica Omega Constellation reintroduced two of these watches. In 2013, they came with the Omega Speedmaster 1957 and in 2014, they introduced the Seamaster 300 Master Co-Axial. It seems definitely obvious (and maybe too simple, but whatever) to expect a new Railmaster from Omega this year, for Baselworld 2015. It will simply close the circle and be a natural end to the vintage re-editions. As with the Seamaster 300, we expect the 2015 Omega Railmaster to come in with a new Omega Caliber 8400, a chronometer-rated movement, internally certified with METAS control and fully anti-magnetic. Not does Omega really push its new antimagnetic technology, but in the context of the Railmaster, this movement makes a lot of sense.
The vintage edition was extremely close to the Seamaster 300, with the same dial, the same triangular indices, the same broad-arrow hands and (almost) the same shape. The main difference is, of course, the lack of a rotating bezel and a lower water resistance. So does our prediction for 2015, with a shape, a dial and hands (except the straight second hand) similar to the SM300. The bezel would simply be replaced with a flat polished one. This could be available in stainless steel with a black dial or in titanium with a blue dial, both on metallic bracelet or leather strap.
The Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m James Bond 007 Spectre edition with NATO Strap
You could easily tell us that Omega already introduced a James Bond 007 watch dedicated to the next movie, the Omega Replica Seamaster Aqua Terra 150m Master Co-Axial Limited Edition James Bond 007 Spectre. This is actually a fair point.. However, we’re pretty sure that this Aqua Terra won’t be the watch worn by Daniel Craig in ‘Spectre’, as he’s been spotted recently wearing a Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m with a NATO strap. So, we predict that Omega will introduce a new James Bond watch this year, based on the Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m and fitted on one of the official and high quality NATO straps (just like the Speedmaster Apollo 11 45th anniversary, Omega will certainly use some of these straps for the limited editions).
We also expect Omega to equip the rest of the collection with the Master Co-Axial movements and so, this limited edition, as the classical edition of the Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m, could feature this innovative, precise and antimagnetic engine – here with a date window at 3.
A new Omega Speedmaster Apollo XIII – Snoopy Award
This year will be the 45th anniversary of the unfortunate Apollo XIII Mission, the third mission intended to land on the Moon that was aborted after an oxygen tank exploded. Omega already introduced several watches to commemorate this mission, like the 1995 edition with a patch in the counter at 9. This could be one of the ideas for a limited edition, like they did last year with the Speedmaster Apollo 11 45th anniversary. Another idea, and actually the one we chose to predict, is a re-issue of the Snoopy Award Omega Replica Speedmaster Professional. The ‘Snoopy Award’ was given by NASA to certain crew members or staff for significant contributions above and beyond the call of duty or for recognition of excellence. The crew members of Apollo XIII, for their incredible reaction to a complicated situation, received this award.
It would make sense to see another Snoopy Award watch, considering the anniversary of Mission Apollo XIII and the 65th anniversary of Snoopy himself (created in 1950). So let’s imagine for Baselworld 2015 a new Speedy based on the classical Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch, with a patch in the small-second sub-counter and a matching blue bezel and NATO Strap.
Omega replica watches are made for all sorts of purposes. Some are purely for style. Some are created for divers, others for climbers or even pilots. Many of us acquire these sorts of timepieces even though we don’t necessarily worry about our oxygen pressure gauge or our tachymeter. The makers at OMEGA realize this and embrace it with their new campaign #OMEGAmychoice which asks its customers to share (on social media) how their OMEGA fits into their lifestyle, big or small.
To help launch this campaign the brand has released its short film titled, “The Collection.” It was released this past weekend on social media to help depict the diversity of the Replica OMEGA Speedmaster collections in real-life situations. After all, this is the brand that has been on the moon, beneath oceans, careening through auto races and timing the Olympics. Check out the video below!