What Omega Speedmaster To Buy

by Barbara Wilson

The Omega Speedmaster is one of the most iconic watches in horology, celebrated for its historical significance, technical prowess, and timeless design. Choosing the right Speedmaster can be overwhelming given the range of models and variations available. This guide aims to help you navigate your decision by providing a detailed, point-by-point breakdown of the key considerations for buying an Omega Speedmaster.



The Omega Speedmaster, famously known as the “Moonwatch,” has been a staple in watchmaking history since its debut in 1957. Its association with space exploration and its reputation for precision and durability make it a coveted timepiece for collectors and enthusiasts. This guide will delve into the various models of the Omega Speedmaster, key features to consider, and tips on making an informed purchase.


Historical Context of the Omega Speedmaster

The Origins

The Omega Speedmaster was introduced in 1957 as a chronograph designed for motorsport, featuring a tachymetric scale on the bezel to measure speed. It gained significant fame when it became the first watch worn on the moon during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969, which cemented its place in horological history.


Key Milestones

1957 – First Omega Speedmaster: Original model with reference CK2915, featuring a black dial, white hands, and a tachymetric scale.


1965 – NASA Certification: The Speedmaster Professional was certified by NASA for space missions, including the Apollo moon landings.

1990s – Introduction of the Professional Series: Enhanced models with improved features and durability.

2000s – Modern Innovations: Incorporation of new materials, improved movements, and limited editions celebrating Speedmaster milestones.

Key Considerations When Choosing an Omega Speedmaster

1. Model and Reference Number

The Omega Speedmaster comes in various models, each with its own reference number. Here’s a breakdown of some notable references:

Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch (310. The classic Moonwatch with a manual-winding chronograph movement and a hesalite crystal.

Speedmaster Reduced (3510.50.00): A smaller, automatic chronograph model suited for those preferring a more compact size.

Speedmaster ’57 (331. A modern reinterpretation of the original 1957 model with updated features.

Speedmaster Racing (329. Designed for motorsport enthusiasts, featuring a tachymetric scale and enhanced chronograph functionality.

2. Movement

The movement is crucial to the functionality and reliability of the Speedmaster. Key movements to consider include:

Caliber 1861/1863: Found in the Speedmaster Professional, a manual-winding chronograph movement with a history of reliability.

Caliber 3330: Featured in the Speedmaster Racing and ’57 models, with Co-Axial escapement and improved accuracy.

Caliber 9900: Used in the Speedmaster ’57, offering chronograph functionality with a column-wheel mechanism and COSC certification.

3. Case and Material

The case material affects the durability and aesthetics of the Speedmaster. Common materials include:

Stainless Steel: Classic and durable, often used in most Speedmaster models.

Sedna Gold: An exclusive Omega alloy providing a rose-gold appearance.

Ceramic: Used in some modern versions for a sleek, scratch-resistant finish.

Titanium: Lightweight and hypoallergenic, used in specific Speedmaster models.

4. Dial and Bezel

The dial and bezel design influence the watch’s legibility and style. Considerations include:

Dial Color: Options range from classic black to more modern blue or grey dials.

Bezel Type: Tachymetric bezels are standard, but some models feature different scales or designs.

Crystal Type: Hesalite crystal is traditional and used in the Moonwatch, while sapphire crystal is found in newer models for enhanced scratch resistance.

5. Size and Fit

The size and fit of the Speedmaster affect comfort and wearability. Key dimensions include:

Case Diameter: Common sizes range from 38.6mm (Speedmaster Reduced) to 42mm (Speedmaster Professional).

Thickness: Varies between models, affecting how the watch sits on the wrist.

Lug Width: Affects strap or bracelet compatibility, typically around 20mm.

6. Bracelet and Strap Options

The Speedmaster offers various bracelet and strap options, including:

Stainless Steel Bracelet: Classic and robust, often with adjustable links for a custom fit.

Leather Strap: Available in various colors and textures, providing a more formal look.

NATO Strap: A casual, rugged option available for specific models.

7. Limited Editions and Special Models

Omega frequently releases limited edition Speedmasters celebrating milestones or collaborations. Notable editions include:

Speedmaster “Apollo 11” 50th Anniversary: Commemorates the moon landing with unique design elements.

Speedmaster “Silver Snoopy Award”: A tribute to NASA’s Silver Snoopy Award, featuring distinctive Snoopy-themed details.

Speedmaster “Dark Side of the Moon”: A ceramic model with a stealthy black appearance and advanced features.

8. Condition and Provenance

When purchasing a Speedmaster, consider the watch’s condition and provenance:

New vs. Pre-Owned: New watches come with warranties and the latest features, while pre-owned watches may offer vintage appeal.

Condition: Check for any scratches, dents, or mechanical issues.

Provenance: Documentation and original packaging add value and authenticity to the watch.

See Also: How To Change Date On Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean

How to Choose the Right Omega Speedmaster

1. Determine Your Purpose

Decide what you want from your Speedmaster:

Daily Wear: Opt for a versatile model like the Speedmaster Professional or Racing.

Collectible: Consider limited editions or vintage models for their unique appeal.

Functional Use: Choose a model with features that meet your needs, such as the chronograph or tachymetric scale.

2. Set a Budget

Speedmaster prices vary widely based on model, condition, and provenance. Set a budget that aligns with your preferences and financial considerations.

3. Research and Compare

Do thorough research on different Speedmaster models and compare their features, prices, and reviews. Online resources, forums, and authorized dealers can provide valuable insights.

4. Consult Experts

Seek advice from watch experts or collectors. They can offer guidance on specific models, their market value, and potential issues to watch out for.

5. Purchase from Reputable Sources

Buy from authorized dealers or reputable second-hand marketplaces to ensure authenticity and quality. Verify the watch’s documentation, warranty, and service history.


Choosing the right Omega Speedmaster involves understanding the various models, features, and considerations that align with your preferences and needs. By evaluating the movement, case material, dial design, and other key factors, you can make an informed decision and find a Speedmaster that suits your style and purpose. Whether you’re a seasoned collector or a first-time buyer, the Omega Speedmaster offers a range of options to explore and enjoy.

For further assistance, don’t hesitate to consult with watch experts or visit authorized Omega dealers to experience the Speedmaster firsthand.


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