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November 1, 2021

Omega Watch Buyer’s Guide Australia: Models, Key Features and Prices

Estimated reading time: 14 minutes

Looking to buy your first Omega watch, or simply want to add to your collection?

Then you may need some guidance on the Omega models currently for sale in Australia. This article will help you get an overview of each model with a focus on key features, what makes them so special and last but not least, how much you can expect to pay for a pre-owned Omega. 

Omega Cal. 321 Chronograph movement Source: CC Flikr

But, let’s be clear – with over 1400+ OMEGA models out there, we are going to be focusing on their core range of popular models available in Australia. But before that, let’s take a brief look at the brand’s history, how much you can expect to pay for an OMEGA, and if they are a better pick than a Rolex. 

OMEGA watch history and key achievements

OMEGA has a long and distinguished history as a watch brand that goes back 170+ years, which makes it one of the greats of the Swiss watch industry. In fact, OMEGA has been making watches for some 50 years longer than Rolex. Created by Louis Brandt in 1848, he started using the OMEGA brand around 1894, before formally adopting it in 1903.

OMEGA has a long and distinguished history as a watch brand that goes back 170+ years. In fact, OMEGA has been making watches for some 50 years longer than Rolex

Today it is part of the Swatch Group, a multinational holding company that also owns other watch brands like Longines, Hamilton, Gashutte, Rado and Bregeut amongst others. And even though there are some fine other brands in the stable, OMEGA is the star of the group.

Key achievements of the OMEGA brand in the world of horology include:

  • Serving as the Official Timekeeper of the Olympic Games since 1932, and a sports timekeeper for numerous other sports including sailing, athletics and swimming. 
  • Partnering with NASA since 1965, with the iconic OMEGA Speedmaster worn on all six moon landings.
  • Pushing the frontiers of precision and chronometer performance by using the Co-Axial escapement, and by achieving the world first Master Chronometer Certified designation.
Automatic timing device for 1948 Olympic Games. Source: Wikipedia CC

Let’s now look at the prices of OMEGA watches in Australia.

How much do OMEGA watches cost in Australia?

Curious about new and pre-owned prices for OMEGA watches in Australia? In terms of price the entry point for the brand is the De Ville Prestige line, with the quartz range the most affordable. You can also spend in excess of $200k if you want to, which gets you a new numbered-edition Tourbillon (rrp $269,600)!

As a guide, in Australia you can expect to pay anywhere from:

  • $2,700 for a pre-owned Omega De Ville Prestige Automatic
  • $6,500 for an OMEGA Railmaster (220.10.40.20.01.001)
  • $7,000 for a new OMEGA Seamaster Diver 300m Co-Axial Master Chronometer (210.32.42.20.03.001)
  • $7,300 for an OMEGA Seamaster Aqua Terra 150M
  • $9,000 for a new 2021 OMEGA Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch (310.30.42.50.01.001)
  • $14,000 for an OMEGA Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M Co-Axial Master Chronometer (215.92.46.22.01.002)

Before we get into the watches, let’s deal with a frequently asked question.

Are OMEGA watches better than Rolex?

Ok, this is one of those age-old debates that you will hear at the pub or in watch forums – and there is honestly no simple answer. Rolex undoubtedly has greater brand awareness, prestige and resale value, but are their watches actually better? Both brands use top quality materials, have exceptional accuracy and are constantly innovating the art of timekeeping. They also both have an extensive range of watches suitable for any activity or setting. Ultimately it will come down to personal preference. 

Rolex vs OMEGA, an age old debate

You can expect to pay more for a Rolex, with entry level models up to double the price of an entry level OMEGA timepiece. Supply and demand also means that you may struggle to locate the Rolex you desire. OMEGA watches come in at a lower price point, and are generally more readily available. An example of this is the difference between two watches with similar specs: a pre-owned Rolex SeaDweller MK1 Dial 43mm (2018) which retails for in the region of $22,995 vs an unworn OMEGA Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M Co-Axial Master Chronometer which retails for in the region of $13,000.

Let’s now get an overview of the brands main families or collections.

OMEGA Watch Families or Collections

OMEGA has four main watch collections or families, each with numerous sub-groups and limited edition models:

  • Speedmaster
  • Seamaster
  • De Ville
  • Constellation

Let’s look at these one by one.

OMEGA Speedmaster range

Alan Bean wearing an Omega Speedmaster (Apollo 12) NASA/public domain

The now iconic Speedmaster – or Speedie – chronograph began life in 1957 and is forever associated with NASA and space exploration, and forever became the ‘Moonwatch’ after the moon landing in July 1969. But it was actually being used privately by astronauts like Walter ‘Wally’ Schirra as early as 1962, before being declared the official timepiece for its space missions in 1965. This is the year Ed White took a Speedie (Ref. ST 105.012) on his historic spacewalk with the Gemini IV Mission, when OMEGA decided to start printing the word Professional on the dial.

In the image above you can just make out Alan Bean (Apollo 12) wearing an Omega Speedmaster on his left wrist – with an oversized band so it can fit over his spacesuit. 

A Speedie later came to play a crucial role in the near disastrous Apollo 13 mission, where the module’s oxygen tank sprung a leak. Astronaut Jack Swigert used his Speedmaster to time the critical 14 second burn for the lunar module’s descent – which allowed the crew to return safely to earth. OMEGA was later awarded NASA’s Silver Snoopy Award in appreciation for this feat. If you want to relive the experience just watch the 1995 movie, Apollo 13, starring Tom Hanks, who is reportedly also a Speedie fan.

Snoopy lapel pin Source: NASA

Why Snoopy? 

NASA adopted the comic strip hound as a lucky mascot in the 1960s, and in 1968 decided to attach an award for ‘for outstanding achievements related to human flight safety or mission success’. The award consists of a lapel pin, a commendation letter and a signed certificate. It also led to OMEGA releasing the now much-in-demand Omega Speedmaster ‘Silver Snoopy Award’ edition in 2003, with the cartoon hound making an appearance on the dial.

Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Professional

OMEGA Speedmaster Professional

The status of the OMEGA Speedmaster Professional was sealed when Buzz Aldrin took his first steps on the lunar surface. This together with their flight-qualified designation by NASA was a key moment for the brand, giving it infinite marketing potential and cementing the prestige of the Speedmaster range. 

Recent versions come with either a Hesalite crystal or stainless steel caseback and the modern Caliber 1861 movement, or the updated Moonwatch which has the METAS-certified OMEGA Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 3861. If you find an original vintage Speedie with a 321 movement be prepared to pay for it, though OMEGA has also revived it in their updated Heritage line. In terms of bracelets/straps, a Speedie comes with a stainless steel bracelet, but many Speedie fans opt for a NATO-style strap which gives it that astro-toolwatch vibe, or a leather, racing inspired strap. 

Size: 42mm
Movement: Caliber 1861 or Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 3861 or 321
Killer feature: Bombproof and been to the moon!

Pricing: You can expect to pay in the region of $9,000 for a new 2021 Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch ref. 310.30.42.50.01.001 (hesalite version).

Buy an Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch if you…want to flex like you are an astronaut. 

Hesalite vs Steel Moonwatch caseback

Other models in the Speedmaster range you will also come across include the:

  • Omega Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon which comes with a slightly larger, black ceramic case (44.25mm) and uses the co-axial movement on a nylon fabric or leather strap. 
  • Heritage models in the range have slightly smaller case sizes (39.7 mm), and come with an update of the legendary Calibre 321 movement.
  • Omega Speedmaster Skywalker X‑33 Chronograph, a now discontinued quartz-powered timepiece with a hybrid digital/analogue display straight out of Star Wars, which Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield wore on the ISS. (See below for a video of his Skywalker X‑33 ‘floating’ on his wrist in space).

OMEGA Seamaster range

Moving into the Seamster range, be prepared for even more models than you can shake a stick at – with everything from dress watches, like the elegant Aqua Terra to tough-as-nails sports watches like the Omega Seamaster Diver 300M.

Omega Seamaster Diver 300M

Seamaster Diver 300M in blue and black

Looking for an alternative to a Rolex’s iconic Sub? Omega’s Seamaster Diver 300M was good enough for James Bond, who ditched the Sub for this model in 1995’s Goldeneye. The mainstay of the range is the steel on rubber strap (ref. 210.32.42.20.03.001), with a polished blue ceramic dial featuring laser-engraved waves – without question the standout feature of this timepiece. 

Size: 42mm

Case: 316L stainless steel

Movement: Master Chronometer Caliber 8800 

Bracelet: Stainless steel or rubber

Killer feature: Gorgeous wave detail on the dial

Pricing: You can expect to pay in the region of $7,000 for a Omega Seamaster Diver 300m Co-Axial Master Chronometer 42mm (ref. 210.32.42.20.03.001)

Special edition OO7 themed Diver 300M

There are a ton of variations on the Diver 300M, including a number of special edition OO7 themed releases (above), and an America’s Cup Edition – which is a chronograph with a slightly larger 44mm case. OMEGA also released the Seamaster 300 as part of it’s ‘1957 Trilogy’ of heritage inspired watches, with retro styling and a vintage-sized 39mm case sizes.

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M

The Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M range is similar to Rolex’s Sea-Dweller, a bombproof timepiece meant for serious maritime missions to the depths of the world’s oceans. How deep? Well, adventurer Victor Vescovo took his OMEGA Planet Ocean Seamaster 600M Titanium to the Eastern Pool of the Marianas Trench (10,934 m) – the deepest place on the planet. 

What do you get with this model? It comes Master Chronometer certified, with a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, polished ceramic dial, 43.5 mm stainless steel case, ceramic bezel, and a helium-escape valve. There are also variations on ths model with a titanium case, as well as a GMT ‘Big Blue’ version with a slightly bigger 45.5mm case. If you are looking for a dive watch then the Omega Planet Ocean should be on your shortlist, especially if you want to spend at least half the going rate of a Rolex Submariner or Sea-Dweller.

Size: 43.5mm

Case: 316L stainless steel

Movement: Master Chronometer Caliber 8900 

Bracelet: Stainless steel, rubber or NATO strap

Killer feature: Value for money – you get a lot of dive watch for the money.

Pricing: You can expect to pay in the region of $14,000 for a Omega Seamaster Diver 600m, depending on the model.

OMEGA Seamaster Railmaster

OMEGA Seamaster Railmaster

The Railmaster is Omega’s answer to the Rolex Milgauss, an anti-magnetic watch if that is a feature you need. It is also a fine looking everyday watch that can do double duty in a more formal environment. 

Size: 38mm

Case: 316L stainless steel

Movement: Co-Axial Master Chronometer Caliber 8806 

Bracelet: Nylon fabric strap

Killer feature: Versatility

Pricing: You can expect to pay in the region of $6,500 for an OMEGA Railmaster.

Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150M

Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150M

The OMEGA Aqua Terra 150M was introduced in 2003, and is a versatile daily wearer quite happy to rough it down to a depth of 150 metres (Aqua = water) or look classic and understated on land (Terra = earth). It uses the caliber 8900 Co-Axial Master Chronometer movement, has anti-magnetism and comes in a huge range of variations in terms of dial colours and strap combinations. You could think of it as a more robust version of a Rolex DateJust, at a slightly more attractive price point.

Size: 41mm

Case: 316L stainless steel

Movement: Co-Axial Master Chronometer Caliber 8806 

Bracelet: Steel, leather or NATO strap

Killer feature: 

Pricing: You can expect to pay in the region of $6,500 for an OMEGA Railmaster.

OMEGA De Ville range

OMEGA De Ville Prestige

Launched in 1960, the De Ville line is 100% a dress watch, with a number of different variations under the name including the Trésor, Hour Vision, Prestige, Ladymatic and Tourbillon. You can opt for mechanical self-wound accuracy with the Co-Axial Master Chronometer movement or the simplicity of quartz.

Size: 34mm (Ladymatic) to 44mm (Tourbillon)

Case: Stainless steel

Movement: Co-Axial Master Chronometer Caliber 8500 or quartz

Bracelet: Steel or leather

Killer feature: Dressed for success elegance and simplicity

Pricing: You can pay anywhere from $2,700 for a pre-owned Omega De Ville Prestige Automatic to $269,600 for a new numbered-edition Tourbillon.

OMEGA Constellation range

OMEGA Constellation

The last line in the current line up of OMEGA watches is the Constellation, another dress watch with hundreds of versions at different price points. First released in 1952, the range includes the Constellation Co-Axial Master Chronometer and Globemaster, which has the distinctive pie-pan dial inspired by watch design from the 1950s. There are also quartz watches in the range which sell for less than the Co-Axial Master Chronometer equipped models. 

Size: 39mm – 41mm

Case: Stainless steel and/or gold

Bracelet: Stainless steel or leather

Movement: Co-Axial Master Chronometer Caliber 8800/8900/8923

Killer feature: A dress watch with style

Pricing: You can pay anywhere from $10,000 for an OMEGA Constellation Co-Axial Master Chronometer 36 mm in gold/steel (131.20.36.20.02.002) to $14,000 for an OMEGA Globemaster 39mm in steel/rose gold (130.20.39.21.03.001)

Looking to buy your first OMEGA or add one to your collection? You can shop online or try before you buy at our showrooms in Melbourne and Sydney