The release of the NOMOS Glashütte × Ace Jewelers Tangente 38 Amsterdam Limited Edition Watch marks the fourth time the Saxon manufacture has collaborated with Amsterdam’s most visible and active retailer. And what can I say? They’ve hit the mark again.

I was involved with the first NOMOS/Ace limited edition way back in 2017. Back then, we celebrated 100 years of De Stijl with a 38mm Orion. I still wear mine (16/100) with pride. In fact, I was so proud of that project I didn’t think I would ever be able to distance myself from it enough to objectively analyze any future editions in the Ace × NOMOS line.


But here we are. It seems time and distance are great for perspective. In all honestly I can say this: I believe the NOMOS Glashütte × Ace Jewelers Tangente 38 Amsterdam to be the most accomplished watch in this series yet. Is it my favorite? No, that title would go to the Zürich Weltzeit that came out towards the back end of 2019. If I could only have one of these collab pieces in my collection would it be this one? No. You’re going to have to prise my Orion 38 De Stijl from my cold dead hands.

…far more accomplished…

But does this watch seamlessly meld the design language of the retailer with that of the brand? Yes it does. And it does it in a far more accomplished way that either the Weltzeit or Club Campus that trialed this tri-chromatic palette previously.


Looking back

The Club Campus 38 Amsterdam was the first time we saw the black/red/white color scheme of Amsterdam’s flag in one of these special edition watches from Ace. The standout element of this design was the “reverse panda” sub-dial. It’s a pretty rare look on a NOMOS, but it beautifully accentuated the ever-present going seconds hand at 6 o’clock.

At that point, NOMOS wasn’t quite ready to pull the trigger on the flat black dial the original concept sketches recommended. Instead, the ruthenium-plated dial seen on the core Club Campus 38 Night was used. The ruthenium dial was very well-received, but I always felt it would have been interesting to see it with a pure black dial (which itself is a rarity for the brand). No matter, of course, I bought it (16/75) anyway…


The Zürich Weltzeit was the first time we saw that pure black background on a NOMOS × Ace collab. That watch was awesome independent of its context, but when you consider it was the only black-dialed Zürich Weltzeit (NOMOS Glashütte’s stand-out model in my opinion) in the collection, it took on an even greater significance. Unsurprisingly, the 25 pieces made sold out in record time. To this day, I am convinced 100 pieces of that model would have sold out just as easily.


A clear improvement

And this brings us up to the current model. The Tangente 38 is the slightly bigger brother of the iconic Tangente 35. Its more modern diameter and slim profile make it a fan favorite and one of the brand’s best selling models. Its attractive price point is another plus.


This model builds on the runaway success of NOMOS Glashütte’s Bauhaus range. Those models (typified by their colored minute tracks) sold like hotcakes. This moody, sophisticated take on the popular layout looks set to follow suit. With 45 pieces available (one for every year Ace has been trading in Amsterdam) I doubt availability will see out the week. The jet black dial provides a sleek contrast to the white minute track and the flashes of red that bring this watch to life.

…price of this limited model is identical to the core model offered by the brand…

As is typical for Ace Jewelers, the price of this limited model is identical to the core model offered by the brand (for penny counters that means that Ace is swallowing the increased costs associated with limited-edition models). The retail for this black beauty is €1,840. And just to remind you where this piece calls home, the subtle triple cross of Amsterdam’s flag pops up on the crown and towards the bottom of the dial in a vivid red. In case it isn’t clear, I think this is not only a fantastic watch and a worthwhile collaboration, but genuinely the best Tangente 38 the brand has ever produced. Learn more here.