There were rumors back in 2020 of a new Moonwatch. Leaked photos and specs were all over the internet, but nothing tangible ever materialised. Finally, as of this week in 2021 the new Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master ChronometerChronometer A chronometer watch movement is a high-precision movement that has been certified by an official organization, such as the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC) or other similar bodies, as meeting certain standards of accuracy and performance. These standards include requirements for the rate of the watch, its resistance to temperature and other environmental factors, and its power reserve. Chronometer watches are tested for several days, in different positions, and at different temperatures to ensure their precision. [Learn More] 42mm has arrived. And yes it happens to be released on a Tuesday.
This upgraded version combines the best of both worlds with some minor changes to the exterior while updating the 1861 movement with the in-house coaxialCo-Axial Escapement The co-axial escapement is a type of escapement mechanism invented by George Daniels, a British watchmaker, in the 1970s, and is characterized by the use of a co-axial wheel, which is a three-level wheel that replaces the traditional pallets used in other escapements. It uses a unique design that allows the gears to run with less friction, which means that it requires less maintenance and will have a longer lifespan than traditional escapements. Additionally, it is said to be more precise than traditional escapements, this is mainly because of the decreased friction which allows the balance wheel to oscillate more consistently. [Learn More] manual wind movement. A new model also implies a new price tag. The base hesalite model carries a 25% price increase compared to the outgoing model.
Omega launched the new moonwatches in eight different variations with the familiar hesalite model in stainless steel as the entry level model. Notable mentions are two different precious metal models, one in Sedna gold and one in Canopus gold. The latter is a white gold-platinum alloy that’s proprietary to Omega.
At first glance, this watch looks very similar if not identical to the outgoing model. So what exactly changed besides the obvious price increase?
To begin, there are some subtle differences on both the dial and the bezel. Starting with the obvious dot over 90 on the aluminum bezel, which stopped production after 1970. This will be a minor and insignificant cosmetic update to most people, but a welcome change for the watch enthusiasts.
The new chronographChronograph A chronograph complication is a feature in a watch that allows the wearer to measure elapsed time in addition to telling the time. It works by having a separate set of gears and levers, called the chronograph mechanism, which is activated by pressing a button or a pusher. The chronograph mechanism starts and stops the chronograph's second hand, which is usually located on the watch's dial, separate from the regular watch hands. The elapsed time is usually displayed on a sub-dial or a register on the watch's dial. [Learn More] second and minute hands bend downwards (teardrop), which is similar to some of the Speedmaster references that were used on the moon. This works particularly well with the new dial design. The now discontinued straight hand design has been in production (and remained unchanged) since 1968.
The dial looks the same at first glance but up close is quite a bit different. The “Speedmaster” and “Professional” print has received a subtle update. The “Professional” used to be slightly wider and now matches the width of “Speedmaster”. More noticeable is the new stepped dial. This makes the pie pan dial more prominent and creates a more pronounced visual depth. Note also that the seconds track is now different with a 3-hash design which is in line with the frequency of the movement. This means the chrono hand will nicely “tick” on the marks along the track. The applied Omega logo makes a welcome return. However take note that this is only available on the sapphire crystal Moonwatches. The base hesalite model does not feature this detail.
Finally, another visual change is the caseback engraving which has been updated. Most notable is that instead of reading “Flight qualified by NASA for all manned space missions” it now reads “flight qualified by NASA in 1965 for all manned space missions”. Note that it is unclear at the time of this writing if this new Moonwatch has in fact been tested or certified by NASA for manned space missions. We know the outgoing model has seen plenty of action in space of course. It would be reasonable to assume that the updated version will take over, but as said, this is yet to be confirmed.
Now, comes the biggest change some such as myself have been waiting for, an updated movement that is fit with modern technology. While there is nothing wrong with the robust 1861 movement, it has been around for quite some time. As a professional tool watch, I find it odd the movement does not hack for example. Even with the reverse winding trick to hack the seconds hand, I find that rather inconvenient.
The new 3861 solves it and more. The relatively new movement has been around and seen on the Apollo XI moonshine gold limited edition as well as the Silver Snoopy Award. The movement has updated silicon hairspringHairspring The hairspring is a thin spring in a mechanical watch movement that is connected to the balance wheel. The balance wheel oscillates back and forth at a consistent rate, and the hairspring helps regulate these oscillations. The hairspring works by applying a restoring force to the balance wheel, which helps to keep the balance wheel oscillating at a consistent rate. The hairspring is also known as a balance spring. [Learn More] that is anti-magnetic up to 15,000 Gauss and also has the coaxial escapementEscapement The escapement is a mechanism in a mechanical watch movement that regulates the release of energy from the mainspring and keeps the watch ticking at a steady rate. The escapement is made up of two main components: the escape wheel and the pallet fork. The escapement is responsible for the ticking sound of the watch, and it ensures that the watch runs at a consistent rate. As the escape wheel rotates forward, it locks and unlocks with the pallet fork, allowing a small amount of energy from the mainspring to be released. This causes the balance wheel to oscillate and the watch to 'tick'. [Learn More]. In addition, it has been METAS certified to between 0 and +5 seconds a day accuracy. The movement also slightly increased the power reserveRéserve de marche Also known as Power Reserve. A watch's power reserve refers to the amount of time a mechanical watch can run without being wound. The power reserve of a mechanical watch can vary depending on the size of the mainspring, the efficiency of the gear train, and the rate at which the mainspring releases energy. If a watch has a Power Reserve 'complication' it simply means that the status of the power reserve can be seen on the watch itself (either on the dial or movement side of the watch). [Learn More] to 50 hours now. And yes, the new caliberCaliber The caliber ('movement') is the heart and engine of a watch. It consists of a number of interconnected components that work together. Energy is transmitted through the gear train, to the escapement mechanism. The escapement mechanism releases this energy in a controlled manner. This drives the gear train, which ultimately rotates the hands of the watch and keeps time. [More Info] has hacking secondsHacking Seconds Hacking seconds is a feature found on some mechanical watch movements which allows the wearer to stop the second hand by pulling out the crown. This allows the wearer to set the watch to a precise time. [Learn More].
Omega also made updates to the bracelet with a new striped clasp and polished omega logo. While the hesalite models come with a fully brushed bracelet, the sapphire sandwich has polished center links. Both versions can also be ordered without the bracelet, as the hesalite models are paired with fabric straps while the sapphire models are paired with calf straps.
Besides the four different stainless steel case models, there are also four precious metal models with the sedna gold version paired with a black dial and all the hands and markers in sedna gold, providing a nice contrast to the black dial. The 18K Canopus gold case is paired with a nice silver sunbrushed dial. Both precious metal versions come with sapphire crystals on the front and back.
The stainless steel Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional with hesalite crystal on steel bracelet has a suggested retail price of 6,200 EUR/$6,300 USD while the sapphire version has a price of 7,000 EUR/$7,150 USD. The sedna gold on bracelet will be 34,300 EUR/$34,800 USD and the Canopus gold priced at 44,700 EUR/$45,300 USD.
More info right here at www.omegawatches.com