Champion of the People: Omega!

Look, at this point y’all should know my titles are only for clickbait. Omega is luxury all the way, from the start (or at least when Swiss watches became good) Omega was more luxurious compared to their rival, Rolex. The thing is, despite being a luxury brand, Omega just isn’t as well known as Rolex, and their watches are usually $1,000 cheaper. So let’s break this down. As always this is not a review and all photos come from Omega’s website, except for the wrist shots which are from me and none of the photos relate to the paragraphs.

Omega Constellation Quarts 36mm

Omega only got their name in 1894 when the company released the 19-line Omega caliber. Before that they were something like “Louis Brandt Watch Company” (I don’t remember or care what the original name was.) Omega as a brand was always about the passion of watchmaking, compared to Rolex who was always in it for the money. This is a really simplified take that I don’t want to get into but it holds a little bit of water.

Omega Seamaster 300 Bronze Gold

The thing is, Rolex watches are always a little bit more expensive than their Omega counterparts, and Rolex is possibly the most famous watch brand to ever exist, besides Casio. Omega seems like the underdog, why would anyone wait on a stupid old waitlist to spend MORE money on some boring tool watch, when they could get a true luxury piece like Omega! I mean up until a few months ago you couldn’t get a Rolex with an exhibition case back, and even now when you can see the movement, Omega finishes their movements in a more interesting way.

Omega Railmaster

Omega is always doing something new to push watchmaking forward, with new ways to make their movements anti-magnetic, or more efficient, or smaller. That’s not all though, because while Rolex sponsors Formula 1, Omega sponsors the Olympics, even James Bond gave up his Rolex for an Omega (AKA Omega offered more money.) And Rolex’s designs are so boring, because they were meant to be affordable tool watches, Omega has stuck to luxury since the beginning, and now that means a more interesting, but less iconic watch.

Omega Speedmaster Professional

I love Omega, but it’s mostly because I’ve been caught in the trap of thinking this luxury company is fighting the evil giant that is Rolex. Omega makes cool watches, there’s no denying that, and they can be seen as better value than Rolex, because of their movement finishing and more interesting designs, subjectively speaking. But if you really want a champion of the people watch, look at microbrands and indie brands, like Farer and Nomos.