It doesn’t happen often, but every now and then a watch brand will release something that is as exciting as it is completely surprising. Overnight, Omega did just that, releasing a brand new collection of chronographs in the vintage-inspired Omega Speedmaster Chronoscope.
The first thing you’ll notice about the new collection is how busy the dials look. Yes, there’s a lot going on, but there is a historically proven method to Omega’s madness. Basically, the new Chronoscope offers a chronograph or stopwatch function that can mechanically measure speed, distance and even your heart rate.
A normal Omega Speedmaster Professional also has a chronograph function, but only with a tachymeter scale around the bezel which is the one that measures speed. In addition to this scale, the Chronoscope also features a telemeter scale for calculating how far away objects are, and a pulsometer for measuring heart or respiration rates. Both of these scales are the circles you can see at the centre of the dial.
As you might imagine, half a century ago tachymeter scales were very popular for racecar drivers, telemeter scales were used frequently by pilots and watches with pulsometer scales are referred to as doctor’s watches still to this day. To have a watch with all three scales is a present-day nod to all of this history, and one which Omega has executed very nicely indeed.
The new Omega Speedmaster Chronoscope is available in four main variations, three in steel and one in gold. One with a crisp white dial with navy blue accents on the dial and bezel, a navy blue dial with white accents, a black and white dial with red accents and a solid gold version with a brown dial and matching gold highlights.
Powering the new collection is the hand-wound calibre 9908, which features METAS/Master Chronometer certification and contains a co-axial escapement. The movement runs at 28,800vph and offers 60 hours of power reserve, and can be viewed uninterrupted through the sapphire crystal caseback. The arabesque style Geneva stripes that Omega have finished the movement with are very nicely done, making for one of the better-looking movements you’re likely to lay eyes on today.
It’s a genuinely exciting new release from Omega, which not only shows they still very much have the capacity to surprise but that their archives remain a rich source of inspiration for new watches. The only potential rub for Speedmaster enthusiasts who are used to the standard 41mm case, is that the Chronoscope features a slightly larger 43mm case. Without having the new release on our wrist, it’s difficult to say how different it might wear, but it will undoubtedly feel a little bigger than a standard Speedmaster.
The Omega Speedmaster Chronoscope is available in steel with a steel bracelet for $13,200, or with a leather strap for $12,725. The version in gold arrives on a leather strap and has an RRP of $21,450.