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Omega Speedmaster ’57 Chronograph 38.6mm ‘1957 Trilogy’ Limited Edition Watch Review

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

In 2017 Omega released “The 1957 Trilogy” set of watches which includes remakes of three models that originally came out in 1957. This includes a limited edition Omega Seamaster, Railmaster, and of course, Speedmaster – with each of those iconic Omega watch families having debuted that year. The 60th anniversary limited-edition models are for the most part totally sold out – including this Omega reference 311.10.39.30.01.001 Speedmaster ’57 Chronograph 38.6mm. So, in a very real sense if you are interested in this watch, you’ll have to struggle a bit to find one even though the limited-edition volume of 3,557 pieces isn’t all that small.

The question I asked myself while reviewing the Speedmaster ’57 Chronograph “1957 Trilogy” watch is “would I rather have this watch or the original from 1957?” It isn’t that the watches are a one-to-one copy of one another but Omega did design this limited edition “homage” in way that most vintage re-release watches don’t get. More so, while it isn’t exactly the same, for those who want the most modern Speedmaster experience with the ’57 look there is the reference 331.10.42.51.01.002 Omega Speedmaster ’57 Co-Axial Chronograph 41.5mm watch that is also a good option.

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

My favorite story about this Speedmaster 1957 Trilogy watch is how Omega made the case. They essentially did a 3D scan of the original Speedmaster watch based on pieces the brand has at the Omega museum across the street from the manufacture in Bienne. Omega did not have original schematics from the 1950s so they needed to base the creation of the new cases on the old ones using this type of modeling technology. One of the interesting things Omega said they discovered was the fact that all of the Omega logos on the watches were different. In fact, there are five Omega logos on the watch and none of them are exactly the same. The reason for this is because in the 1950s there wasn’t a specific dimension spec for the logo, and Omega used various suppliers to produce its watch components. Thus, each supplier more or less drew out the Greek omega letter logo on their own. This resulted in each of the logos on the watch being just a little bit different and Omega themselves apparently didn’t even realize this until they did the scan.

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

The different logo sizes made it to this 60th anniversary model, which in my opinion helps add to its character. The most modern part of the watch is the bracelet, which includes Omega’s welcome micro-adjust system in the deployant. Omega isn’t up to Rolex yet in the steel bracelet department, but it certainly feels a lot more durable and well-made than original 1957 watch bracelets. This is important because if you choose a “vintage re-issue” watch like this in favor of the actual (and clearly more nostalgic) original model, one of the biggest reasons you do so is for durability and dependability. If you want to change the bracelet to a strap, you can – but note the non-standard strap width of 19mm.

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

Personally, I think it is a bit amazing just how novel and modern the Omega Speedmaster case was when it was first released. More than 60 years later it still has many of the hallmarks of a modern watch, and at the time probably looked rather futuristic. The Speedmaster was the first watch to have a tachymeter scale printed on the bezel of a watch versus on the dial. Today even though no one uses the tachymeter speed calculation feature on the Speedmaster or other watches, such design elements are so iconic that they can’t seem to be separated from the racing watch theme.

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Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

We must also recall that even though the Speedmaster gained most of its current notoriety as the “Moonwatch,” before it went to space the Speedmaster (as its name implies) was designed for the track and other vehicle time measuring purposes. It wasn’t until about a decade after the Speedmaster was originally released that it started to serve duty as an astronaut’s watch. Today’s most popular Speedmaster watches have a different look and feel from the “broad arrow dial” of these original models. I happen to like both the needle hand and arrow hand look of the Speedmaster equally, as they each convey their own sense of personality and purpose. For the Speedmaster ’57 Trilogy watch Omega of course gave it a bit of an aged look that some refer to as “faux patina.” I forgive them.

If you are getting a vintage re-release watch, clearly you are interested in some of the reasons vintage watches are popular today. Discolored dials and lume colors are certainly part of that. The colors actually look pretty nice, meaning that the faded black/gray dial and cream-colored “vintage lume” certainly help its statement as a fashion item. Don’t miss the desirable applied steel Omega logo (as opposed to a printed one) on the dial.

Omega Speedmaster '57 Chronograph 38.6mm '1957 Trilogy' Limited Edition Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

And what of the size? At 38.6mm wide this 1957 Trilogy Speedmaster Chronograph is designed to be the same dimensions as the original. At first, I thought that I would find it too small but the thick bracelet and chronograph pushers keep the watch from feeling too small. The proportions also work really well in favor of this case size. More so, if you personally don’t like 40mm wide-plus modern Speedmaster watches, this limited-edition vintage-styled model might be exactly what you are looking for. In all, the 38.6mm wide Speedmaster case is really comfortable to wear and stylish, but some will find it a bit on the petite side. The case is in 316L stainless steel and is water-resistant to 60m.

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Comments

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  • I like the look of this watch just fine but I recall a few years at BaselWorld I tried on the Speedmaster Moonwatch ‘CK2998’ which has a slightly larger 39.7 mm case and while I liked it, it was too small for my average size (7″) wrist. So I fear this Speedy would also be too small for me. Plus I’d rather have an automatic and a scratch magnet Hesalite crystal doesn’t work for me. But for someone with a smaller wrist (or who likes the look of smaller watches) who wants a vintage vibe and doesn’t mind a modern Omega price, here ya go…

    http://ablogtowatch.kinsta.cloud/omega-speedmaster-moonwatch-ck2998-limited-edition-watch/

  • Raymond Wilkie

    Aaaaagh! You said the ” H ” word. When will the watch industry stop relying on their back history for inspiration for the future ( no question mark, rhetorical ) I can hear you shouting ” POPULAR! ” at me, and they seem to be having sold out, but i just can’t see it myself. I recently tried a 39mm chronograph with date and even with my goggles on i couldn’t make out the date, i could barely read the chrono. I am not doubting the quality build of this piece, the name is legend but it’s way to small for the modern man ( IMO) The hands are too small and braclet is horrible. It’s super dull.

  • Sheez Gagoo

    Well, I rather like it for size and credibility, but 316, hesalite and the old fashioned movement ( don’t know if it’s a + or -) kills it in a way. There are better ways to spend $7000 but also much worse.

    • Bellisarius

      hesalite is an original, superior material for any tool watch which is what this is. Try gear, webbing, weapons, shoulder straps, parachute kit, cockpit straps, all things that can and Do scratc sapphire (as my saphire rolex frinds attest),whereas the flexible hesalite took me 2-3 polywatch sessions in 3 years, 5 min for crystal clear. Sapphire headaches are stupid for a tool watch. A Patek? Reverso? sapphire, sure. A tool watch? hessalite.

  • cluedog12

    When compared against the regular Speedy, the vintage-patina lume softens the dial. I quite like the overall effect. Nowadays, there’s a flavour of Speedy for everyone. I happen to love the dial of the modern Speedmaster 1957, but that particular model is 16 mm thick! In practice, the 14 mm case will work with a much wider range of buttoned shirt sleeves.

    As for the people bitching about the 38.6 mm diameter, give it a rest. A lot of men have wrists less than 7″ in diameter. For them the midsize case will look better and fit better on their wrists. The pricing seems a bit high, but the watches are sold out. When the secondary market for this watch matures, I see this Speedmaster being an appealing alternative for watch enthusiasts who aren’t in love with the regular flavour Speedmaster Professional.

    One final remark. Omega’s goal of slavishly recreating an original 1957 watch reminds me of Macallan’s 1878 scotch. Macallan pulled out all the stops to recreate an old scotch that was later discovered to be fake. Had the retro scotch not been overpriced in the first place, we might have felt a bit more sympathetic towards Macallan’s cynical effort to extract every last dime from well-heeled connoisseurs. For once, why can’t we just enjoy a well-executed neo-retro release without the overbearing narrative.

  • Gokart Mozart

    This is a great size for a chronograph.

    Who wants little sub counters in the centre and then masses of empty space at the edges and then a massive bezel and pointlessly chunky case?

    Not me that’s who.

    By the way that is why they tend to hang off women’s wrists. If men wore watches that big relative to the wrist size they would be slagged off.

  • Raymond Wilkie

    A certain flow of conversation has been lost with the new vetting rule.

    • Michael Peñate

      We all know who to thank for that.

      • Raymond Wilkie

        Did his name begin with M ?

        • Among others…

          • Raymond Wilkie

            Oh. really?

  • SuperStrapper

    Why hesalite tho. Such a terrible idea. Can you at least make it a hipster option and the rest of us can just have a sapphire?
    The bracelet may be well made but it’s the least attractive part of the watch. This design has dragged down every watch it’s been implemented on.

  • egznyc

    I probably also would pick another Omega, as the size would feel too small to me. It’s a chronograph, not a dress piece, and while I like the vintage look – and don’t mind the ”fauxtina,” for that matter – I would prefer a more modern size.

  • ILOW

    How is it different from any other way people with more money than they need to survive spend it? We are only on this spinning rock, surrounded by hundreds of billions of other spinning rocks for a tiny length of time, never to return again. If enjoying watches and tapping a keyboard is the way we find enjoyment then fair play. You cannot cure all the Earths ills or feed every sick child. Hopefully the struggling mother can jump into watch making evening school and get a job with Omega, assembling these overpriced marvels and taking a cut of your 7k as her salary.

    • john wood

      I guess my point is that these watches have no integrity and the shareholders and management at omega are laughing at us. My Seiko turtle is infinitely cooler than this. ImI saying that our hard earn money is better spent elsewhere.

  • Honest but civil should be fine.

    • john wood

      Was my comment not civil Mark?

    • Kuroji

      You might think so, but you’d be wrong.

  • If it makes you feel better, post comments on charity websites instead and stop reading about and buying watches. I’m not sure who is twisting your wrist to be here. Or find a balance that works for you. Cheers.

  • Pete L

    Nice but small. I have the 57 replica which is a little larger (42) and also shares the aesthetics so would stick with that. They seem great value too now!