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The Complete Guide to Omega Seamaster Watches

From dive watches to dress watches, the Omega Seamaster collection is complex and fascinating.

collage of omega seamaster watches
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When you hear "Omega Seamaster," there's a good chance that a dive watch comes to mind. Most likely, it's similar to the kind worn on screen by the James Bond character in various forms since the 1990s: the Diver 300m. The Seamaster isn't a single watch, though, but a collection that can include everything from hardcore divers to utterly classic dress watches. Brimming with iconic models, history and character, it's a collection worth unpacking.

The Seamaster is Omega's oldest current collection

When the Seamaster debuted in 1948, it was part of Omega's 100th birthday celebrations. That gives you some idea of how old the brand is, and the collection itself is the oldest in Omega's current catalog — predating the likes of the Speedmaster by nine years.

In the 1940s, watches were largely dressy affairs, and so was the Seamaster, but it obviously had aquatic intentions. In fact, the first commercially available dive watch, the Omega Marine, would also look somewhat dressy from our modern perspective, with its rectangular, Reverso-like case enclosed in a watertight outer case. So, while the Seamaster built on Omega's diving reputation, it wasn't quite a dive watch — yet.

The very first Seamaster was more than a dress watch, however: leveraging Omega's experience making watches for the British military in WWII, it was remarkably tough. Thanks to a new kind of gasket called an O-ring, it achieved a water resistance rating of 60m (besting most modern dress watches) and could withstand temperature changes between 50 degrees celsius down to -40. This is what a rugged sport watch looked like in 1948.

omega seamaster watch
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The Omega Seamaster as a full-fledged dive watch

1957 was a big year for Omega as it introduced the Speedmaster collection as well as the Seamaster 300, a dive watch as we'd recognize it today. Despite its name, it was only water-resistant to 200m — which was about the limit of what companies were even able to certify at the time. A decade later, the brand supplied the British military with a version of these watches. (It's notable that the brand today makes a vintage-inspired version of the Seamaster 300, which despite its confusingly similar name is quite different from the Seamster Diver 300M — more on each below.)

A note on vintage Omega Seamasters

The Seamaster's history and the brand's current collections are cool and all, but the best thing about Omega Seamasters? Vintage models can offer awesome value — as well as being highly interesting and available. Browsing the listings will give you a sense of just how varied the watches bearing the Seamaster name have been, with sub-collections and variants aplenty over the years. Vintage Seamaster dive watches are still going to be expensive, but one can often find killer examples of the above noted dressily styled models for under $1,000.

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Bond, James Bond

Fast-forward to 1995 when pop culture enters the story — and the "007" connection becomes a big part of the Seamaster's persona. Fictional superspy James Bond had worn a variety of watches over his on-screen career (yes, including Rolex), but from that year onward he's been strictly an Omega man.

The rationale, according to Omega, is that costume designer Lindy Hemming working on the film Goldeneye chose the brand for its long relationship with the British military. And since the Bond character was technically a Royal Naval Reserve commander,0 a Seamaster would be appropriate — especially after the Royal Navy began using Seamaster 300 watches in 1967.

The classic Omega "Bond watch," however, is the very '90s-looking Seamaster Diver 300M (which is looking a bit more current in its most recent forms), but he's also worn the likes of a Planet Ocean. For 007 superfans, the brand has also commemorated the relationship with numerous special editions.

james bond wearing the seamaster diver 300m 007 edition
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Modern Omega Seamaster Watches

The modern Seamaster collection includes everything from the current title holder for the deepest diving watch ever (15,000m rated) to heritage-inspired dress models based on the earliest watches in the collection (60m). They all feature movements with the brand's signature c0-axial escapement and Master Chronometer certification — and while we've highlighted representative models below, each sub-collection offers even more in terms of colors, complications and special editions.

Diver 300M

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Omega Seamaster Diver 300M
omegawatches.com
$5,400.00

Also sometimes known as the Seamaster Professional, the Seamaster Diver 300M watch of 007 fame was introduced in 1993. A refresh in 2018 brought the collection out of the '90s with upgrades and design refinements — and to the attention of ever more watch fans. It's still quirky among popular modern dive watches with its manual helium release valve (10 o'clock crown), scalloped bezel, skeletonized hands and wavy dial pattern. Somehow, though, it pulls it all off.

Movement: Omega 8800 automatic
Diameter: 42mm
Water Resistance: 300m

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Planet Ocean

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Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M
omegawatches.com
$6,550.00

What Omega's Diver 300M is to the Rolex Submariner, the Planet Ocean is to the Sea-Dweller: the brand's beefed-up, hardcore dive watch. Doubling the water resistance to 600m, it's big and chunky but also has a slightly more traditional overall design. These are some of Omega's sportiest, most modern-looking and aggressively styled and sized watches, and they're even more so in chronograph versions.

Movement: Omega 8900 automatic
Diameter: 43.5mm
Water Resistance: 600m

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Planet Ocean Ultra Deep

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Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Ultra Deep
omegawatches.com
$11,200.00

Though within the Planet Ocean line, the Ultra Deep deserves special mention. In 2019, Omega flexed and took a dive watch prototype 10,928m beneath the waves to the bottom of the Mariana Trench — a few meters deeper than the previous record-holder, Rolex. The commercial version that you and I can buy is a bit smaller (to fit on a human wrist) and not rated for quite as deep, but it is qualified to go a ridiculous six kilometers underwater.

Movement: Omega 8912 automatic
Diameter: 45.5mm
Water Resistance: 6,000m

Aqua Terra

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Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150M
omegawatches.com
$5,700.00

The Aqua-Terra was introduced in 2002, and it's one of those watches that straddles the line between sport and formal. With simple three-hand time telling and the date, it's more or less got a dress watch's profile — but 150m of water resistance, an arrow-shaped minute hand, lume and the outer minutes/seconds track all up its masculine, sporty vibe. It all adds up to one thing: versatility. As shown here the classic model is 41mm with a teak-inspired horizontal dial pattern, but we particularly like the Aqua Terra in 38mm with a toned-down dial pattern.

Movement: Omega 8900
Diameter: 41mm
Water Resistance: 150m

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Omega Seamaster Heritage Models

These are modern watches that are reissues of historical references or directly inspired by them. Browsing the modern Heritage range offers something like a whistle-stop tour of the Seamaster collection's history, variety and most notable models.

Seamaster 300

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Omega Seamaster 300
omegawatches.com
$6,500.00

The Seamaster 300 offers everything Omega's dive watches are known for but with a retro flare and a nicely sized 41mm case. Yes, it revives the historical model from 1957, but the modern collection riffs on the design and comes in a range of color and material variants.

Movement: Omega 8912 automatic
Diameter: 41mm
Water Resistance: 300m

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Railmaster

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Omega Seamaster Railmaster
omegawatches.com
$4,900.00

The Railmaster was part of a "trilogy" introduced in 1957 alongside the aforementioned Speedmaster and Seamaster 300. This was Omega's answer to watches like the Rolex Milgauss and the IWC Ingenieur notable for magnetic resistance. Whereas those watches were marketed to the likes of scientists and engineers, the Railmaster was intended specifically for railroad personnel. Today, the Railmaster is highly antimagnetic, but it doesn't stand out so much in the Omega catalog for that feature shared with many other watches with METAS-certified movements and silicon balance springs. It stands out more as the closest thing in the brand's catalog to a field watch.

Movement: Omega 8806 automatic
Diameter: 40mm
Water Resistance: 150m

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Ploprof

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Omega Seamaster Ploprof
omegawatches.com
$13,800.00

The famously shocking Ploprof is an absolute beast. It's named for the abbreviated French term for "professional diver" and originates in 1970 from the time that watch brands were competing for deep-diving hardcore dive watches. Originally water resistant to 600m, the modern Ploprof remake doubles that to 1,200m. What is up with that design? First, the crown (situated on the left, you'll notice) is protected from knocks by a spring-loaded crown guard. And that crazy vertical button? You need to push it in order to turn the bezel (in either direction) — an operation requiring two hands.

Movement: Omega 8912 automatic
Diameter: 55mm (x 48mm tall)
Water Resistance: 1,200m

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Bullhead

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Omega Seamaster Bullhead Chronograph
omegawatches.com
$9,600.00

Somewhat like the Ploprof above, this is an example of utter '60s-'70s quirkiness. But it's one that's garnered a cult-like following and got its nickname (applied to all chronographs of this type), obviously, from its two chronograph pushers situated at 12 o'clock like horns. It goes to show that the Seamaster can even include a racing chronograph (otherwise mostly the territory of the Speedmaster collection).

Movement: Omega 3113 automatic
Diameter: 43mm
Water Resistance: 150m

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Seamaster 1948

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Omega Seamaster 1948
omegawatches.com
$6,400.00

A tribute to the originals, Omega introduced this watch for the Seamaster's 70th anniversary in 2018. It comes in a couple variations offering central seconds or a small seconds subdial. It shows that the concept of the Seamaster as more than a dive watch is still alive and well at Omega.

Movement: Omega 8806 automatic
Diameter: 38mm
Water Resistance: 60m

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Special Editions

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Omega Seamaster Olympic Official Timekeeper
omegawatches.com
$5,400.00

There are some models that are clearly within the Seamaster collection but don't neatly fit in a particular range, usually produced as some sort of special edition. There are those made for the Olympics as the games' official timekeeper (as the model highlighted here) and some, such as Boutique Editions, that are about as dressy as anything you'll find from the brand.

Movement: Omega 8800 automatic
Diameter: 39.5mm
Water Resistance: 60m

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