There's no other way to put it: Omega is hitting it out of the park this year. First, there was the revamped Speedmaster — truly the first Speedmaster I've worn that made me think, huh, maybe I really do need one of these. And now, though I haven't tried one on in person, we have another reimagining of a classic model that has this watch reviewer scratching his head and asking, "Maybe I actually need another dive watch?"
Without further ado: meet the new Omega Seamaster 300 Master Chronometer.
To be sure, this isn't the first modern throwback to the 1950s/1960s-era Seamaster 300 that the brand has created. Far from it. However, this version is in some ways even more faithful to the original design — or rather, it's even more faithful to the idea of a vintage watch.
Let me explain. Whereas the last iteration of the 300 included a modern ceramic bezel, this new one ditches it in favor of more classic aluminum (or "oxalic, anodised-treated aluminium," in the words of Omega — a highly scratch-resistant variety). It revamps the lollipop second hand, ditches the "Master Co-Axial Chronometer" text on the dial (the new dial simply reads "Omega" and "Seamster 300"), uses vintage Arabic numerals with "open" 6s and 9s, uses vintage-colored lume —and, most interestingly, uses a sandwich dial: a lower plate is filled with blue-glowing Super-LumiNova, above which sits the main dial with cutouts for the indices. (Fans of vintage Panerai, rejoice.) The result, taken as a whole, is pretty spectacular.
Of course, Omega didn't stop there. Powering the watches is the Omega Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 8912 movement with 60 hours of power reserve. (Impressively, the watch is still slimmer than the previous generation; a domed sapphire crystal results in a thickness of 13.85mm for this 41mm-wide diver.) It also features a new conical crown, 300m of water resistance (hence the model name), and it comes in blue or black.
You also have the option of purchasing it on a leather strap ($6,150) or a matching steel bracelet ($6,500). A 21mm lug width means using aftermarket straps might be a bit more tricky, but we don't see why you wouldn't want to use Omega's bracelet; it's handsome, with brushed center links, polished outer links and a taper from 21mm down to 16mm at the combination polished/brushed clasp.
Wait, wait, wait, though — there's more. There's also a Bronze Gold version. Yes, you read that right: a special version of the watch in a special, patent-pending alloy of bronze and gold (37.5 percent gold, plus palladium, gallium and silver and of course, copper, at roughly 50 percent). Omega developed this unique alloy to add to its already wide-ranging collection of special gold formulations in reference to an ancient Greek bronze alloy that used gold. Typically, modern bronze watches use a titanium or other case back in order to prevent the bronze from coming into contact with the wearer's skin, which can discolor both skin and watch.
In this case, Omega wanted to formulate an entire watch made out of a single metal, which they did. The Bronze Gold alloy is uniquely resistant to corrosion and though it will patina, it won't develop verdigris oxidation, that greenish crust that often appears on bronze. Soft pink in color, Bronze Gold was designed to sit somewhere between the brand's 18K Moonshine and Sedna gold. The watch uses the same open-6-and-9 Arabic numeral as the steel models, but doesn't feature a lollipop seconds hand, and features a brown ceramic bezel.
The price on this bronze beauty (which comes on a leather strap)? $11,200.