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Hands-On: NOMOS Zurich World Time in Midnight Blue (Video Review)

The Weltzeit has been around for quite some time now, more than 10 years at the time of this recording, yet it is, in my opinion, still pretty much unmatched. In this video review we get up close, really close, with the NOMOS ZÜRICH World Time Midnight Blue (Reference 807):

“Weltzeit” stands for world time, however, I would say this is not exactly a world timER, which shows the time everywhere, at once. This is instead more like a GMT where you can see two time zones at any given time, home time and local time. You read the time as follows:

  • At that little red home icon at 3 o clock, you can see the home time. Alternatively, if you so choose you could sync this up with the displayed time, and use this to display the 24-hour time. Adjusting the home time is done by pressing the little ressessed button at 8 o clock on the side of the case. NOMOS provides a handy little tool alongside this watch to help you do just that. 
  • The local time is the displayed time and you know where that is by looking at the city name at 12 o-clock. Wherever your airplane lands, with the press of a button you can flip through the various timezones in a split second (I must have pressed this button at least a thousand times the first couple of days I had this watch, and everything worked like a charm, every single time). 

The Zurich Weltzeit exists in two dial options in the regular catalog (there are more variations in the wild, thanks to various limited and special editions having been released to date). Reference 807, which we are looking at, has a midnight blue dial, and reference 805 has a white dial. I intentionally picked the blue, not only because I like that color, but because my wrist is on the smaller side and a darker dial visually tends to wear smaller to my eye. Floating above the dial is the domed sapphire crystal which has anti-reflective coating inside and out. As you might see throughout the video a blue tint can sometimes be seen when the light hits the crystal just right. 

The case is fully polished and wears nice and compact. It features a lug width of 20mm, a case diameter of 39.9 mm, height 10.9 mm and a lug-to-lug of 49.4 mm. That lug to lug will sound scary to some. More on that in a bit. The case features a display caseback, which reveals the movement. 

The watch features an in-house automatic caliber, equipped with a world time and 24-hour display.  This caliber also uses the NOMOS swing system, the in-house escapement which you can recognize by the blue hairspring. The power reserve is limited to 42 hours, which isn’t amazing but sufficient as this is an automatic caliber. Despite the complications, this is a very thin caliber at just 5.7mm. If you haven’t yet, make sure to watch our “Visit to the Manufacture” video, which gives you a detailed look at how NOMOS makes its own calibers.

So how does it wear on the wrist. As indicated, the case dimensions are well, let’s say hotly debated online, especially the lug-to-lug size which is almost 50mm. In fact, it was the one point concerning this watch that had me write this one off as simply too big for my wrist. Now, fast forward to me wearing the watch for some time now, and here, I have to say that it wears very well. Due to the relatively complex dial layout, the dial also wears smaller than the overall dimensions would suggest. The simple truth is that this watch will fit more wrists than the dimensions would suggest. Thanks to the thinness of the watch it also has no problem whatsoever fitting under a shirt cuff.  It is a very versatile watch which can be worn for most occasions, but keep it away from water as it is only splash proof. 

If you love the NOMOS design aesthetic and are in the market for a very nicely constructed watch with an in-house caliber, with a world time display, then look no further. As said in the introduction, despite this watch being around for quite some time now, it knows no equals and still outshines similar watches in a higher price category. Given the particular NOMOS proportions, as always, give this one a try on the wrist before you take the plunge.

More information right here.

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[…] and they are an exceptional value proposition.  Not long ago, we had a hands-on with the NOMOS Weltzeit, and today we’ll have a closer look at the NOMOS Ahoi Neomatik, reference 564, with its […]

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