OMEGA has been redefining watchmaking since 1848 with their pioneering spirit and extraordinary achievements. Today, they are owned by The Swatch Group and enjoy recognition and admiration all over the world as one of the greatest watch brands.
We delve into their rich history, explore their revolutionary world and discover why you should choose an OMEGA watch.
Beginning in 1848, OMEGA’s history is rich with remarkable achievements and accolades. Travel through the years with this OMEGA timeline.
Louis Brandt began assembling precision pocket watches with parts supplied by local craftsmen, deep in the Jura Mountains.
Louis Brandt’s son, Louis-Paul, moved the company to a small factory in Biel, which is still OMEGA’s headquarters today, and got all the local craftsmen in one place to have full control over the manufacturing process.
The revolutionary “OMEGA” movement was created. Ground-breaking at the time, the high level of precision meant that it was highly accurate and easy to repair – making it the perfect movement to build lots of watches with.
The company renamed as the OMEGA Watch Company after the global success of this game-changing “OMEGA” movement. This creation, along with other major industry firsts like the first minute repeater wristwatch and first big date calendar, propelled OMEGA to the top of the industry.
After setting and breaking records in major watchmaking trials and competitions, OMEGA’s unprecedented reputation for accuracy led to their appointment of Official Timekeeper of the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics. This was the first time in Olympic history that one brand had been given this responsibility.
A record that is still unbeaten today - a 47.7mm calibre that was adjusted by Alfred Jaccard sets the famous world precision record in all categories at Kew – Teddington observatory.
A very special year. OMEGA celebrate their 100 year anniversary and launch their ocean-inspired Seamaster collection, designed with professional scuba divers in mind.
The Constellation collection is launched with the Constellation chronometer watch. This watch was soon after known as ‘The Swiss Watch’ and continues to be an essential part of OMEGA’s heritage today.
OMEGA introduce a new legend to their watch family – the Speedmaster collection. This chronograph watch went on to fulfil its destiny and later became the ‘Moonwatch’, thanks to NASA.
The OMEGA Speedmaster was chosen by NASA as their official chronograph. They declared it flight-qualified for EVA (extra-vehicular activity) and for manned space missions.
Previously part of the Seamaster collection, a selection of watches drop the Seamaster title and are taken out to become their own important collection – The De Ville Collection.
On 21st July 1969, astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first men to step on the moon with the OMEGA Speedmaster Professional Chronograph watch. With this momentous achievement came a unique nickname; the Moon Watch.
OMEGA created the Marine Chronometer 2400, which was the most accurate and technologically advanced wristwatch in the world at the time.
Introducing another world first, OMEGA launched the first self-winding wristwatch with central tourbillon and automatic winding crown. Pierce Brosnan wore the OMEGA Seamaster Quartz Professional in the James Bond film Golden Eye, and OMEGA watches have since been James Bond’s timepiece of choice in every film.
OMEGA perfected their revolutionary Co-Axial Escapement movement, invented by Englishman master watch craftsman George Daniels. This movement eliminates friction and is considered one of the most important advances in modern watchmaking. Most OMEGA watches today include this Co-Axial Escapement mechanism.
OMEGA introduced its own “Master Chronometer” movement, which has passed tests approved by independent body METAS. To earn the name Master Chronometer, whose movement is COSC certified, the watch must pass tests approved by the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology (METAS) that replicate real-life wearing conditions.
From the far corners of space to unrivalled sports timekeeping and silver screen appearances, the world of OMEGA is full of extraordinary achievements.
Since 1962, OMEGA has been quite literally on-hand as astronauts explore space. Its status as the first watch on the moon earned the Speedmaster its nickname in 1969; the Moonwatch. Now one of the most famous chronographs in the word, the OMEGA Speedmaster is celebrating 60 years in 2017. A true icon of space exploration and style.Shop OMEGA Speedmaster
OMEGA has a global reputation for its award-winning precision timekeeping, something which is brought to the world’s leading competitions. OMEGA has been Official Timekeeper of the Olympics since 1932, and also brings cutting-edge timekeeping to other top athletics, swimming, bobsleigh and sailing competitions.
Decades before venturing into space, OMEGA set out to explore the sea. Since then, they have played a significant role in ocean exploration. In 1932, the OMEGA Marine was the first commercially-available divers’ watch and the OMEGA Seamaster 300 was launched in 1957, which would eventually be selected by the British Royal Navy.Shop OMEGA Seamaster
Showcasing a red-carpet cast of film star ambassadors, OMEGA continues to be seen on some of the world’s most admired stars including George Clooney, Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig, as well as cinema’s greatest spy. The OMEGA Seamaster has accompanied 007 on every adventure since GoldenEye.Shop OMEGA James Bond Limited Edition Watch
Constantly striving for world firsts, OMEGA created the world’s first Master Chronometer watch, which has passed tests approved by METAS, the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology, that replicate real life wearing conditions and demonstrate resistance to water and magnetic fields.Shop All OMEGA Watches
1 - OMEGA craft timepieces with traditional craftsmanship and state-of-the-industry materials. They innovatively blend ceramics, silicon and new alloys with precious metals to create answers to problems. For example, in 2008, OMEGA began putting silicon in all watches because it can’t be magnetised.
2 - OMEGA watches are among the most precise in the world. They’ve set more precision records than anyone else.
3 - The true definition of Swiss made. Every OMEGA watch is crafted in Switzerland.
4 - If it’s good enough for James Bond… Ever since GoldenEye in 1995, the world’s most famous secret agent has had one piece of equipment he can always rely on; an OMEGA Seamaster.
5 - OMEGA are the only brand to partake in an extra quality standard, going well beyond the COSC certification. The Master Chronometer certification, established by METAS (Federal Institute of Metrology) and OMEGA, proves levels of precision, performance and anti-magnetic resistance like never before.
Like any high precision instrument, a watch needs regular servicing to ensure that it functions perfectly. As a general rule, a watch should have a complete service every four to five years, depending on the conditions in which it is used. This includes completely stripping, cleaning and refurbishing all components and replacing parts where necessary. The components are then re-assembled, lubricated and then fully tested to ensure your watch is ready to go.
A watch’s water resistance can’t be permanently guaranteed. Things like the ageing of the gaskets or by accidental shocks could affect it. The water resistance of your OMEGA watch should be checked once a year by an authorised OMEGA service centre.
We have eight stores across the UK that stock OMEGA, including our very special OMEGA Boutique in the Trafford Centre. You can bring your OMEGA watch into any of these stores to arrange a service and get expert advice from our team.FIND YOUR NEAREST OMEGA STOCKIST
Here’s some aftercare tips to ensure that your OMEGA watch maintains its high standard of performance, reliability and appearance.
Read our Ultimate Guide to Swiss Horology.
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