39 Interesting Facts About Omega watches
As proven in this article, there are many interesting facts about Omega Watches. Today, Omega is one of the most iconic and famous luxury watch brands in the world. It is known for its high precision and high-quality timepieces that keep ticking year after year.
You might know about Omega’s iconic Speedmaster model, and you might be aware of their Seamaster model, but how much do you really know about Omega watches and the brand’s long history? After reading this article with facts about Omega watches, you might be surprised at how much interesting information about the brand you’ve missed out on.
Over the years, Omega has achieved many great things and made a number of innovations that have revolutionized and impacted the watchmaking industry into what it is today.
Being the first watch on the moon, and being the preferred watch of many of the world’s celebrities and leaders are just a small part of the story.
In this article, we share 39 top interesting facts about Omega watches.
39 Facts about Omega watches
1. President Richard Nixon was offered an Omega Speedmaster in yellow gold but did not accept it
Nixon considered the watch too valuable and couldn’t accept it.
2. Omega watch Company was founded in 1848
When being founded, it wasn’t named Omega watch company nor Omega. This was a name that would be embraced later on.
3. Omega was founded by Louis Brandt in Switzerland at La Chaux-de-Fond
4. Louis Brandt was 23 years old when he founded Omega
Brandt began by assembling pocket watches from parts that were supplied by local craftsmen, and the rest is history.
5. In 1877, both of the sons of Louis Brandt decided to join him on his journey
6. The watch company changed its name to Louis Brandt & Fils in 1877
This translate to Louis Brandt & Sons in English and was an appropriate name after the sons of Louis Brandt joined him.
7. Together they produced a completely new mechanical watch movement
This watch movement became the ultimate movement of accuracy at the time. The movement was easy to repair and service. This movement was named the “Omega Caliber”.
Due to the great international success of the Omega Caliber, the watch company began being associated with the Omega name.
8. In 1903, the company changed its name from Louis Brandt & Fils to Omega Watch Company
This was probably a great move considering that the brand was more associated with the Omega name than its original name.
9. The idea of changing the name from Louis Brandt & Fils to Omega Watch Company came from Henry Rieckel
Henry Rieckel was the banker to the Brandt brothers.
10. Omega won first place in every category at the Geneva Observatory time trials in 1931
This win had a huge impact on Omega’s reputation as a prestige, top-class watchmaking brand, and was the beginning of Omega establishing itself as the producer of the most accurate watches available on the market.
11. The first man to reach the North Pole wore an Omega watch
Ralph Plaisted Kelly was the first man to reach the North Pole, and Omega was also the first watch to reach the North Pole as he had an Omega with him on his wrist.
The expedition used Omega Speedmasters in the journey of getting to the North Pole. The journey took place in 1968, and getting there took 43 days. This is definitely one of the most interesting facts about Omega but certainly not the most famous.
12. Omega watches were used by the men in NASA’s Mercury program
13. Omega was the first watch to reach the moon
This is unarguably one of the most well-known facts about Omega watches and their history. When the NASA expedition to go to space was carried out, Buzz Aldrin wore an Omega Speedmaster. When Buzz Aldrin walked on the moon, on his wrist was the Omega Speedmaster strapped on his wrist. When Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, he didn’t wear his watch. The Omega Speedmaster is still to this very day used by astronauts.
This moment in history is an extremely important one in Omega’s history and has contributed greatly to Omega’s reputation.
14. Omega’s Seamaster model was first launched in 1948
The Seamaster launch was done in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Omega.
The timepieces that were launched as part of their Seamaster collection were, however, inspired by the timepieces that the British military and Navy had been using that Omega had made specifically for them. This was a model which Omega produced for the navy and military from very early on in their history.
15. Omega’s chronograph was used to measure time at the Olympics
When Omega released its chronograph, it was so accurate that the Olympics used it for measuring time.
16. James Bond has worn an Omega watch in the majority of movies
While James Bond has worn several different watches in the movies throughout the years, including Rolex, Omega has been attached to the wrist of James Bond in the majority of films.
Sean Connery’s preferred watch brand was Omega, but after him, a number of different other watches were used. When Pierce Brosnan took over the role of James Bond, however, he wore a Seamaster on his wrist, and since then, Bon has always worn an Omega timepiece.
17. A large number of celebrities and famous individuals have worn Omega watches
Some of these individuals may not be surprising facts about Omega watches, but some of the individuals who have worn Omega watches have been Ringo Starr, Soviet Pres. , Jack Lennon, Neil Armstrong, Pope John Paul II, Elvis Presley, Mikhail Gorbachev, Buddy Holly, and many more.
John F. Kennedy Junior is, however, considered to be the most important person who has worn an Omega timepiece.
18. Omega’s Co-Axial escapement movement was released in 1999
The movement was invented by English watchmaker George Daniels. Upon release, Omega was the first company that successfully put the co-axial escapement movement into large-scale production. The Co-axial movement released was the Omega Caliber 2500.
19. All Omega watches with the Co-Axial Caliber 8500 are COSC-certified chronometers
This is one of the facts about Omega watches that speak for the high precision that Omega watches have.
20. Omega launched an updated version of their Co-Axial movement in 2007
This movement was the Caliber 8500 and was a movement that had low friction, high mechanical efficiency, and an impressive performance. This is a well-regarded movement still to this day.
21. Omega created the first movement that was capable of resisting magnetic fields greater than 15,000 gausses in 2013
Omega used a different approach than its competitors. Rather than making a case that would work as a protection against the magnetic fields, Omega developed a movement that wouldn’t be affected by the magnetism of up to 15,0000 gausses (1.5 teslas).
22. Since Buzz Aldrin wore a Speedmaster Professional when walking on the moon in 1969, the watch has been referred to as the moon watch
Omega uses this piece of history greatly in their marketing, and on the casebook, it says that the Speedmaster was the first watch on the moon, and Omega proudly talks about this moment in history, with all right.
23. Omega released the James Bond 50th Anniversary Collector’s Piece in 2013
The timepiece was released to celebrate the 50th anniversary of James Bond. It was a limited edition Seamaster Diver 300M watch.
23. The first watch bearing the Omega name was released in 1894
The name could be seen on the famous 19-caliber watches.
24. Omega is the last letter of the Greek alphabet
The omega letter symbolizes accomplishment and perfection. These are qualities that many would argue Omega has. Especially at the time when they released their revolutionary and high-precision Omega caliber.
25. In 2006, Omega was 2006 selected as the official sponsor for the Winter Olympics
Just like the regular Olympics, this is a role that Omega has still to this day.
26. In 2015, Omega released the Omega Seamaster 300 Spectre Limited Edition
The Spectre Seamaster was the first timepiece especially made for James Bond and which he wore in the movie that was available to the public.
27. In 2015, Omega released A special ‘Silver Snoopy’ Speedmaster
Today, this is a highly popular piece, and it was made to celebrate the 45-year anniversary of Omega’s involvement in the safe return of the Apollo 13 astronauts.
28. Omega took inspiration for its first Omega Speedmaster from the dial aesthetics on the dashboards of Italian cars.
29. The name Speedmaster came from the first-ever tachymeter
The first Speedmaster model had the 27 CHRO C12 mechanical movement which is also known as the Omega 321 or Lémania 2310 movement.
30. The first time an Omega Speedmaster went to space was in 1962
The watch was worn by an American astronaut of Swiss origin, which was appropriate considering Omega’s own origin. Walter Schirra wasn’t handed a watch but used his own personal watch with him on his Journey on October 3rd, 1962.
31. Omega created the first tourbillon wristwatch movement in 1947
Omega was the first in the world to do this, and it was so with its Calibre 30I.
32. NASA declared the Omega Speedmaster was the only wristwatch that was suitable for space in 1965
More precisely on March 1st, 1965. After having done many years of testing and putting the Speedmaster watch up to the test, they declared this.
33. When Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, he didn’t wear his Omega watch
Only Buzz Aldrin wore his Omega Speedmaster. The reason was that during the journey, the clock inside the Lunar Module broke. As a result, Armstrong hung his Omega Speedmaster Professional in the Lunar Model to replace the clock.
A few months after the moon landing, the watch of Buzz Aldrin was stolen.
34. The British Royal Flying Corps decided to wear Omega watches as their official timekeepers for its combat units in 1917
35. The American Army decided to use Omega watches in 1918
36. The Omega Constellation was launched in 1952
37. The Omega Speedmaster was launched in 1957
38. The Omega DeVille was launched in 1967
39. A 1947 Omega set the record for the most expensive Omega ever sold at an auction
The Omega watch sold was the stainless steel Tourbillon 30. This was a 7.5-minute tourbillon. It was the only watch of its kind and was built back in 1947. Its initial estimate was 100,000 to 200,000 Swiss Francs, but in the end, the watch was hammered at CHF 1,428,800.
Bonus fact about Omega watches:
Omega has been the official timekeeper of the Olympics since 1932
This is a title that Omega still has today. That’s quite impressive!
As you can see from these facts about Omega watches, the history of the watch brand is long and rich. Omega is a watch with a great heritage and a prestigious past with many watch innovations which has helped Omega position itself and build its reputation as one of the top luxury watch companies in the world.
Which of these facts about Omega watches did you find the most interesting?
Were there any facts about Omega watches that surprised you?