Wrist Game or Crying Shame: Omega Dynamic Chronograph
Wrist Game or Crying Shame is here with a look at yet another Omega. This time, we put the Omega Dynamic III to the test. But first…
It was tough sledding for last week’s TAG Heuer Kirium Formula 1. The neo-vintage ana-digi chronograph took a vintage Mike Tyson style beating with 73% voting this one to the scrap pile. The comments were absolutely savage and many of you recalled the days of fragrances such as Drakkar Noir and Davidoff (no, not those guys) Cool Water. I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that today’s Omega Dynamic III will fare much better. Whether it wins the Fratelli’s favor, will be up to you.
The Omega Dynamic III
The Omega Dynamic series of watches have normally been reserved for downright odd watches from the brand. If you go look up the Dynamic, the original series contained an oval-shaped case that makes me think of the hallucinogenic drugs of the 1960s and ’70s. The second series erupted into the 1980s and followed the drug trade with its Acapulco gold looks and off-centered dial designs. Therefore, it was nothing short of surprising when the Dynamic III line debuted in 1997 in a very buttoned-up form.
With the Omega Dynamic III line, the brand set about offering watches to a younger, entry-level buyer. They also decided to look back to World War II and the watches they made for the British military. In what I can only describe as a bit of a weird move, Omega chose to debut these watches in Munich at the Inhorgenta fair. Regardless of the questionable locale, the world at large received two 38mm steel military-inspired watches available at approachable prices. One was an automatic chronograph and the other was a three-hand automatic with date.
Whether you chose an Omega Dynamic III in field watch or chronograph guise, there were similarities. As mentioned, both rang in at 38mm in diameter. You could have them on leather or bracelet and each was good down to 50 meters with their screw-down crowns. Both watches used the ETA 2892-A2 as a base, but the chronograph brought in a Dubois-Depraz module. If you’re looking at the chronograph from the side, you can see the “stacked” crown and pushers.
…these numerals switched to Super-LumiNova around 1998…
A simple screw-in case back with the Omega logo kept things tidy. The watches all had black dials, lumed dagger hands, a yellow sweep hand, and luminous Arabic numerals. Notably, these numerals switched to Super-LumiNova around 1998, which explains the stark difference when viewing various models.
Not overly popular
I still recall seeing the Omega Dynamic III at places like Tourneau in New York City during the late 90s. It’s hard for me to remember the prices, but I feel like the chronographs were under $2,000 and I honestly cannot recall the cost of the three-hander. People like my Dad took a look at these because of their no-nonsense looks. However, I remember him ultimately moving on to something that looked a little more serious and grown-up. These watches didn’t look overly cheap, but they certainly had emitted an air of cost-cutting. Perhaps the printed dials were the root cause. Whatever the reason, these simply didn’t sell. You can read more about them here.
A bit of a resurgence
The Omega Dynamic III line lasted a few short years and was canceled in 1999. Interestingly, collectors had a bit of an “oops” moment about five or so years ago and we saw prices of these watches head north. Seemingly, that excitement was short-lived because the Dynamic is cheap on the secondary market. Personally speaking, I like these watches and I think that the chronograph looks incredibly clean. The bracelets aren’t fancy, but they’re known to be incredibly comfortable in an almost vintage way. What is a bit disturbing is that these watches often show serious lume aging that signals moisture entry.
I was rolling through Chrono24 and came upon what I think is a very nice Dynamic III Chronograph for €1,690. The watch and photos are property of Relojeria Ancora in Aviles, Spain. It’s nice to see that this watch contains all of its original boxes and papers. Check out those big fat pushers and the utile crown — very nice! Even the tritium lume looks good on this one. Hmm, tempting indeed and with that, it’s time for you to cast your vote on whether this Dynamic deserves your ducats. And while you’re at it, we’d love to hear whether you own one of these or have in the past. What were your experiences with this entry-level Omega?