A fortuitous spin-off in 1903 gave birth to the Omega watches brand. Almost immediately, it was left in the hands of four young people, the children of brothers Louis-Paul and César Brand, who died shortly after the creation of Omega SA as a separate company. Led by Paul-Emile Brandt, who was just approaching his 24th birthday, these four young adults took the opportunity to continue their fathers’ legacies and built a company that the world knows and admires.
Each of the various Omega watches is a tribute to fine artisanship. Learn more about the brand and the process below.
Omega Watches Overview
The exquisite styling of Omega watches nearly makes one lose their breath. They leave no detail to chance as they carefully design and construct every millimeter of the watch. A particular model of Omega watch may take three to five years to move from concept to production model. Once it is ready for production, there may be a dozen teams of people necessary to produce the hundreds of pieces that go into each timepiece. Actual assembly can take anywhere from one day to six months depending on the complexity of the watch.
While the company is over a century old, they are a leader in watch innovation. In 1999, they began using a co-axial movement designed by George Daniels in 1970. For nearly 30 years, other watchmakers turned Daniels idea for innovation down, until Omega watches caught his vision of the co-axial escapement. The next generation of movements is anti-magnetic and again, Omega is leading the way. The Constellation “Pie-Pan” Globemaster is the very first full anti-magnetic movement watch certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). They achieved this goal by using non-ferrous materials in the movement, eliminating the cage from this watch’s design.
Another, more recent, innovation is their proprietary Liquid Bezel. It is a fascinating combination of ceramic and a zirconium based alloy called Liquid Metal. It is purported to be timeless, stronger than stainless steel even.
Omega watches go exciting places. Buzz Aldrin wore an Speedmaster Professional Chronograph on the moon during the first ever moon landing in 1969. To further the brand, Omega scored a shrewd product placement deal put their watch on thousands of movie screens in the 1996 movie Golden Eye. James Bond has been a good spokesperson for the brand. He wore the Seamaster Professional 300M Quartz in Golden Eye and a Seamaster 300 “SPECTRE” Limited Edition in the 2015 Bond film Spectre.
The Exquisite Omega Seamaster
Production on the Seamaster began in 1948. Throughout the years, Omega has updated the Seamaster line’s style, but at least one feature remains the same – the screw down crown. There are three main lines of Seamaster watches, the original Seamaster Professional, Seamaster Planet Ocean, and Seamaster Aqua Terra. Each of them offers something unique to the watch enthusiast.
First introduced in 1994, Bond wore this watch in Golden Eye. With one noted exception, all Seamaster Professional watches share these features:
- unidirectional rotating bezel;
- water resistant to 300 meters;
- helium escape valve at 10 feet.
The main exception to this list is the GMT. It is water resistant to 300 meters, but it does not have a helium escape valve.
Seamaster Planet Ocean
Introduced in 2003, this line is unique because it has always included the co-axial movement. Some features that come with all Planet Oceans are:
- water resistant to 600 meter;
- automatic movements;
- Si 14 silicon balance spring;
- the new Liquid Bezel.
Originally, the Planet Ocean line only came with a black dial. Starting in 2012, Omega increased their options to include blue and white bezels. One of the newest Planet Ocean models is scaled down to fit a woman’s wrist, featuring a 37.5 mm stainless steel case.
Seamaster Aqua Terra
Coming to the market in 2003, this watch is perhaps better suited for someone who likes to play on both land and in the water. All Aqua Terras share these features:
- water resistant to 150 meters;
- bears the Master Co-Axial movement;
- silicon balance wheels.
It seems Omega likes to play more with the Aqua Terra line and there is a much wider range of styles to choose from here. Colors, bezels, straps, and bracelets are much more varied and therefore have shorter production runs as it appears Omega is using this line as a testing ground for new ideas.
Pricing on luxury watches varies greatly based on the small details. These details mean a lot to people and many are willing to pay top dollar to have the best watch available. It is often said that when one buys a watch, they are buying time. When considering the pricing of luxury brands, this could not be truer. The cost of each watch increases as the time needed to design and produce the watch increases.
Omega watch prices are not available on the Omega website. They gently encourage shoppers to contact their local boutique to purchase their Omega watches.
If one is in the market for a pre-owned Omega watch, here are some online options.
Online, the prices for Omega watches varies greatly. Here is an example of pricing for a few of the top selling lines.
- Omega Seamaster 300 $2695;
- Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra $4775;
- Omega Speedmaster Racing $2849;
- Omega Deville Prestige Quartz Ladies Watch $1375;
- Omega Constellation $8239.
Purchasing a pre-owned Omega watch online comes with the risk of unknown authenticity. Shoppers should do their due diligence before making a major purchase online. The best way to guarantee authenticity is to search the Omega website to locate official Omega Boutiques for a hands-on experience.
The Omega brand has endured for well over a century. They are constantly innovating and leading the way to improve timepiece quality. An investment in an Omega timepiece means one will always have a luxury watch. We would love to read your stories about where you have taken your Omega wrist watch.
Images from depositphotos.com.