Omega Speedmaster

A new movement for the space watch

The Omega manufacture revisits its emblematic Speedmaster Moonwatch by adding an antimagnetic calibre Master Chronometer certified.

By Frank Declerck, Nicolas Yvon
Frank Sans C video on the new Omega Speedmaster.

The Omega Speedmaster chosen by NASA

Here is a watch starring among the stars: the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch. Indeed, it was the one to ‘land’ on the Moon. In 2021, the watch switches calibres but not looks. An icon cannot be disfigured! But it can however benefit from the most recent technological innovations to better its performances. Suffice to say, the space watch is still in a crescent phase. Which is why it obviously deserved a Frank Sans C video and a complete article with maximum information.

Only watch officially approved by NASA after extreme testing (high and low temperature, acceleration, humidity, decompression…), the Speedmaster Moonwatch was conceived in 1957 by the Omega manufacture.

La NASA avait fait passé de nombreuses tests à la Speedmaster avant son homologation pour la mission Apollo 11.
Before being approved by NASA for the Apollo missions, the Omega Speedmaster had to undergo stringent testing.

Unlike what I said in my Youtube video, it seems that there was no call for tender, but that NASA chose some watches to test without asking anyone. Which is even more insane!

This chronograph is inseparable from the American space conquest. On the 21st of July 1969, it made history with the Apollo 11 mission.

Quinze minutes après Neil Armstrong, le chronographe Omega Speedmaster fait ses premiers pas sur la Lune au poignet de Buzz Aldrin
The Speedmaster Omega took its first steps on the Moon at wrist of Buzz Aldrin. Copyright NASA.

Not at 2h56 a.m (GMT) when Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon, as we could think, but at 3h15 a.m when Buzz Aldrin joined him: he was the one wearing the watch! Neil Amstrong’s was still onboard the module, to be used as timepiece. Since this planetary event, the Speedmaster became the Moonwatch.

When space legends talk about a star…

You only have to examine the special edition Speedmaster Apollo 13 “Silver Snoopy Award and see Snoopy sleeping in the 9 o’clock subdial to understand that this Omega piece is no ordinary watch.

Black and white like the famous Snoopy comic strip (Peanuts), the Speedmaster Apollo 13 Silver “Snoopy Award” is characterized by a peculiar scale between 12 and 3 o’clock.

« What could you do in 14 seconds? » can be read on the dial between twelve and three o’clock. The reason is that the chronograph literally saved the Apollo 13 crew by enabling them to precisely time the burn on the engine to correct the trajectory of the Lunar module Aquarius (LEM) during their return trip. Only way to survive since the Service Module had been damaged by the explosion of an oxygen tank – ‘Houston, we have a problem…’ – before even reaching the Moon.

The new Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer 

Equipée d'un calibre antimagnétique, la nouvelle Speedmaster Moonwatch est certifiée Master Chronometer
The Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch is now certified Master Chronometer.

This year, Omega decided to revisit an icon: a successful bet as much from the aesthetic than mechanical viewpoint. The new Moonwatch draws inspiration from the Speedmaster 4th generation, the one worn by the Apollo 11 astronauts.

Comme les pièces d'époque, cette version de la Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer end cier présente un verre hésalite.
Among the different Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer, this steel model on coated nylon fabric strap features hesalite glass as did the vintage watches.

Among the small details, while the 42mm case stays slightly asymmetrical, the tachymeter on the bezel is now thinner. Also – and most importantly – it features the famous dot over 90 and one angled under 70, just like the vintage edition. The retro effect is reinforced by a new five-arched-links-per-row bracelet reminding of the historic models.

La Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer présente un petit point au-dessus du 90 comme la montre de 1969
Like the 1969 watch, the tachymeter scale of the new Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer features the famous “dot over 90”.

Extra vintage, the new Speedmaster is equipped with a modern manual winding chronograph movement. Benefitting from the last Omega innovations, this calibre is the greatest evolution of the Moonwatch.

Visible aux dos de certaines versions de la Speedmaster Moonwatch
The new Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer is powered by the very performing Calibre 3861, highly resistant to magnetic fields.

Master Chronometer certified by the METAS (Federal Institute of Metrology), Calibre 3861 resists to extreme magnetic fields up to 15 000 gauss and complies with the COSC requirements (Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute).

Le chronographe Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer est disponible en huit versions différentes
No matter the model, the Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer is inspired by the vintage version that accompanied the Apollo 11 crew in 1966.

Steel on steel, leather or fabric strap, hesalite or sapphire glass, Sedna™ or Canopus™ gold (exclusive gold alloys): eight editions make their entrance in the collection.

Golden collection…

Quick precision: the movement is only visible through the back of sapphire glass models. On hesalite glass pieces, a solid case back protects it.

More about the new Speedmaster

The new Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional in pictures…
L'Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer en acier avec verre saphir sur bracelet acier ou sur bracelet cuir noir
The Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer equipped with a sapphire glass is available on a steel bracelet (€7 000) or a black leather strap (€6 700).

Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer steel on steel and sapphire glass.
Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer steel and sapphire glass on leather.

Dans sa version munie d'un verre hésalite comme en 1969, l'Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer en acier est proposée sur bracelet acier cinq maillons ou sur bracelet en tissu nylon noir
The steel Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer with hesalite glass (as in 1969) is available on a five-links-per-row steel bracelet (€6 200) or a black nylon fabric strap (€5 900). The solid back is decorated with a seahorse, Omega’s emblematic animal.

Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer steel on steel and hesalite glass.
Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer steel and hesalite glass on fabric.

Le modèle Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer existe aussi en version or Sedna™
The Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer dresses up in exclusive Sedna™ gold (€34 300 gold on gold and €24 300 on leather).

Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer Sedna™ gold.
Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer Sedna™ gold on leather.

L'Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer est aussi éditée en deux versions en or Canopus™
The Canopus™ gold, an Omega exclusive white gold alloy, adorn some Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Master Chronometer pieces (€44 700 gold on gold and €30 000 on leather).

Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer Canopus™ gold.
Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional Master Chronometer Canopus™ gold on leather.

After more than 20 years, the former Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional is bowing out.

Worthy successor of the watch that walked on the Moon, the now retired Speedmaster Moonwatch appeared into the collection in 1997. In its 42mm case was housed the manual winding calibre 1863.

The differences between the 2021 and 1997 Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch might not be obvious, but they are here.

Available in an all-steel version or on black leather, with a hesalite or sapphire glass, it was presented in a special Moonwatch box set (since 2014) including a NATO strap, a Velcro strap replicating those worn by astronauts (a tool came in to change them) and a book retracing the adventures of the Speedmaster.

L'Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch était livrée dans un coffret spécial
The former Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch with its special box set is already a collector’s item.

With the arrival of the new generation, this model’s production is coming to an end in 2021. And so is the box set… A future collectible.

Speedmaster Silver Snoopy Award, a true mascot  

Omega Speedmaster Silver Snoopy Award
The Speedmaster Snoopy Award is an edition – non-limited – featuring NASA’s mascot on the small seconds counter (€9 500).

In 1970, Omega received the prestigious “Silver Snoopy Award” from NASA for the crucial role played by the Speedmaster in saving Apollo 13. On a wider scale, it recognized the unique contributions of the brand to space exploration. After a limited edition sold out in a few hours, the watchmaking house features since the end of 2020 a new heritage model in collection.

La montre Omega Speedmaster Silver Snoopy Award possède un fond décoré d'un petit Snoopy et d'une Terre mobiles
The Omega Speedmaster “Silver Snoopy Award” shows an incredible sight on the back, animated by a small Earth and Snoopy in a space module rotating in sync with the pace of the watch.

This 42mm diameter Speedmaster “Silver Snoopy Award” in steel, with a blue ceramic bezel and silver dial, flaunts a small seconds counter personalized by Snoopy wearing a spacesuit.

The space agency mascot also appears on the amazing case back of the watch. It is animated by an Earth disc – rotating in sync with the small seconds hand – and a small Snoopy in his Module that moves when the chronograph seconds hand is used. He then makes a complete circle in one minute, one half of it hidden behind the Moon.

To discover more, read our detailed data sheet on the Speedmaster Silver Snoopy Award.

The feminine Speedmaster, between elegance and performance

Initially meant for men, the Speedmaster also exist in a feminine version. This variant flaunts a diameter of 38mm, with a slightly different dial featuring oval-shaped counters.

Ce modèle Omega Speedmaster 38 mm en or Sedna™ est serti de diamants sur la lunette
New editions of the Speedmaster 38 mm entered the women collection.

The Speedmaster 38 mm collection plays on colours and materials combinations, some flaunting a diamond-set bezel. Moving away from the purely professional instrument to gain in sophistication.

Which does not prevent them from guaranteeing a water-resistance up to 100 meters and to house an automatic movement (Omega 3330 Co-Axial calibre) which precision is certified by the COSC.

Four new variations of Speedmaster 38 mm have joined the collection in 2020.

A l'image des version en or Sedna™, l'Omega Speedmaster 38 mm arbore l'emblématique hippocampe d'Omega au verso.
Like the other Omega Speedmaster 38 mm, the Sedna™ gold versions (€16 300 or €19 500 with diamond-set bezel) flaunt the emblematic Omega seahorse on the case back.

Consult our detailed data sheets:
Speedmaster 38 mm in Sedna™ gold on taupe-brown leather strap.
Speedmaster 38 mm in Sedna™ gold and diamonds on taupe-brown leather strap.

Ces deux versions Omega Speedmaster 38 mm associent l'or jaune à des éléments verts
These two Omega Speedmaster 38 mm boast a stunning chromatic pairing of yellow gold and green features (€16 300 or €19 500 with diamond-set bezel).

Speedmaster 38 mm in yellow gold on green leather strap.
Speedmaster 38 mm in yellow gold and diamonds on green leather strap.

Read also: our article on the steel Omega Speedmaster equipped with the reedition of Calibre 321.

In 2017, Omega celebrated in London the 60th anniversary of the Speedmaster, with George Clooney and Buzz Aldrin. Find our article on the event:

When the Omega Speedmaster enters the collection…

Obviously, this watch is prized among collectors. Models linked with space missions and “Snoopy” references are the most sought after. How to find them? In auctions, of course, but also on specialized websites such as Watchfinder & Co.
Always be wary of web opportunities too good to be true and be careful of unknown websites. Since the Omega Speedmaster watches are widely popular, some very good imitations exist…

Some nice videos…

Georges Clooney (Omega brand ambassador) meets Buzz Aldrin.
George Clooney talks to NASA legend Charlie Duke in the short movie “The longest minute”.
After a first air shot, Alan Shepard was the first to hit a golf ball on the Moon during Apollo 14!