Hot Take: An Update For The Omega Speedmaster ’57 — Smaller And (Much) Thinner
Almost ten years after Omega introduced the Co-Axial Speedmaster ’57, the brand comes back with an updated, slimmed-down model. The outgoing one had an automatic movement. This update, however, features a hand-wound caliber. In addition to the updated matte black sandwich dial with faux-patina details, the watch is now available in three additional colors. Let’s take a quick look at what Omega has exactly done here.
The new Speedmaster ’57 is still a very recognizable watch, very much inspired by the CK2915. The case, although smaller in size, stays pretty much the same shape-wise, with a steel bezel and straight lugs. The dial still features a small seconds sub-dial at 9 o’clock and a chronograph recorder for the minutes and hours at 3 o’clock. Where the sub-dials still use the steel alpha-shaped hands, the hour and minute hands still use the rhodium-plated broad-arrow shape. The date also remains at 6 o’clock. Also, the flat bracelet, based on the Apollo 11 50th Anniversary (steel) and Ed White bracelets is pretty much the same, apart from the fact that it now has a new clasp. This new clasp adds an on-the-fly micro-adjust push system. Now, let’s get into the bigger changes that have been made.
A smaller (mainly slimmer) Speedmaster ’57 case
First, let’s take a look at the things that apply to all of the four different iterations that have been introduced today. Those are the updated case and the new movement. The case has seen a notable change in size when compared to the previous Speedmaster ’57. Whereas the previous model was 41.5mm in width, these new versions measure 40.5mm in diameter. But even more impressive is the way that Omega slimmed down the case. Instead of the quite substantial 16.17mm of the previous model, the new model now only measures a very acceptable 12.99 millimeters in thickness. That’s more than a 3mm difference, which is almost a 20% reduction in the height of the case. That is, of course, possible mainly thanks to an updated movement.
From an automatic to a hand-wound movement
Whereas the outgoing Speedmaster ’57 housed an automatic caliber 9300, the new model houses a new in-house-developed hand wound caliber 9906. It’s similar to caliber 9908 used in the Speedmaster Chronoscope, so it also has a 60-hour power reserve and runs at 4Hz. Just like on the outgoing model, the movement is still visible through the sapphire case back. Now let’s get into the different dial configurations.
Three additional color options for the Speedmaster ’57
As mentioned, the dial layout is still very much the same and the matte black faux-patina dial is still available. It has been updated slightly, however. It’s now a proper sandwich dial, and the sub-dials also feature a two-layer construction. In addition to this black version, there are now also three other dial colors available — a matte burgundy red and sunburst blue and green. All of them feature black chapter rings around the main dial and the sub-dials. The applied indices are rhodium-plated, and the dials also feature an applied Omega logo.
All four versions are available on the steel flat-link bracelet (CHF 8,000) or on a matching leather strap (CHF 7,700). The watches will be available in May this year.
The smaller size and especially the slimmer profile of the case will very much improve the wearability of the Speedmaster ’57. And in my eyes, the owner of a Speedmaster should always have to wind his or her watch by hand. It encourages a more personal relationship with the watch and its impressive history, I think. I’m still not a fan of the faux patina on the matte black version, but that’s why it’s good that there are now three other flavors to choose from. To me, the blue and green sunburst versions work best with the steel bezel. The burgundy dial wouldn’t be my first choice, but I know from my experience with the burgundy dial of the FratellOris that it can make for a very nice addition to any watch collection!
What do you think of the new Speedmaster ’57? Are you happy with those changes they made to the size of the case? And what do you think of those new color options, which one’s your favorite? Let us know in the comments! And check out the Omega website for more information.