Following our latest pictorial review from the “A Watch A Week” series that we shared last week, we now bring you the full hands-on review with technical specifications of the Omega Speedmaster – White Side of the Moon.
The Omega Speedmaster – White Side of the Moon (“WSOTM”)
A year before the White Side of the Moon was introduced, there was the Speedmaster Dark Side of the Moon, a tribute to the Apollo 8 astronauts. They were the first people to see the dark side (or, far side) of the moon with their own eyes, a side that we will never be able to see on Earth.
During Baselworld 2015, Omega introduced the White Side of the Moon, inspired not by astronauts’ views of the Moon in space this time, but rather the radiance of the celestial body as seen from Earth, a soothing yet bewitching sight that we can easily identify with.
The WSOTM comes naturally as the next series after the success of the dark side and the grey side, which was inspired by lunar dust.
In this series, there are two dazzling choices, the classic one as shown and the other with a luminous mother-of pearl dial with 74 diamonds on its bezel set in Pt850 platinum Liquidmetal®.
The case, dial and hands
The case is a brushed and polished 44.25 mm white ceramic body, with a matte chromium nitride tachymeter scale on a polished white ceramic bezel. Each case in the Speedmaster solid ceramic series (i.e. Dark Side of the Moon, Grey Side of the Moon and White Side of the Moon) start out as raw ceramic powder. They are then pressed into the desired shape of the case-body, followed by the sintering process of heating and compression until they shrink to their prescribed size. Lastly, the cases are given their final touch using diamond tools to achieve the polished edges and grooves.
On the face of the white zirconium oxide ceramic dial, the family name “Speedmaster” that is printed in modern fashion stands out on the top-center of the dial after the Omega logo and text. Just like its predecessors in the Speedmaster solid ceramic collection, it is displayed prominently in an outstanding shade of red. Although this disrupts the monotony on the dial, it is aesthetically pleasing as it gives your eyes an immediate spot to focus on.
The red is complemented by the corresponding coloured tip on the central chronograph seconds hand. The hands and indexes are extremely outstanding, made out of 18K white gold, adding on to the overall brilliance on the watch. White Super-LumiNova coats the central hour, minute and chronograph seconds hands as well as the indexes and the two dots at 12 o’clock.
The subdial at the 9 o’clock position tells the seconds and the one at the 3 o’clock position has two hands to record the 60-minute and 12-hour chronograph run. The date window has a clean, subtle placement at the 6 o’clock position.
The sapphire glass has anti-reflective coating on both sides thus allowing the wearer to tell the time easily and legibly at any angle; and of course, the watch is extremely photogenic under any lighting conditions.
The signed polished crown is engraved with matte chromium nitride, while the chronograph pushers are made of steel, covered with white polished ceramic caps. The column wheel mechanism makes it easy and smooth for the steel pushers to be engaged.
The watch is very lightweight for a sporty chronograph, weighing about approximately 92 grams.
The WSOTM is powered by the OMEGA Co-Axial calibre 9300, the first in-house Co-Axial movement to feature a chronograph function. It is an official certified chronometer, running at the frequency of 28,000 bps (4 Hz) with 54 jewels. The calibre 9300 has a power reserve of 60 hours and instead of the quick set date function, it has a time zone function that allows the hour hand to be adjusted quickly in both directions without affecting the minute hand.
The transparent caseback showcases the duo main-spring barrels in the movement, as well as its rhodium-plated rotor and bridges finished in Geneva waves. The hairspring on the escapement on the OMEGA Co-Axial is fitted with the progressive silicon material that is anti-magnetic, requires less lubrication and keeps the beat rate consistent. All these benefits (which although the use of silicon may cause dissent among some watch purists), it is a high tech solution and offers superior performance.
Apart from our regular hands-on review, we spent a good week with the WSOTM showing it to our friends and snapping daily wristshots which you can revel in here. What we really liked about the watch is how lightweight it feels, allowing the wearer to participate in their weekday/weekend routine without hindrance of the weight of the watch. At the same time, it comes with a handy chronograph function in a robust movement that allows for 60 hours of power reserve. The deployant clasp made from titanium ceramic on the leather strap is a good touch and completes the entire look on the watch, bringing much convenience to the wearer while removing or putting on the watch.
This version of the WSOTM is not targeted, or marketed as either a men’s or ladies’ watch. Although there seems to be a general consensus from informal polls of the online watch community and our personal friends. It does strike the majority as one that is tilted to suit feminine tastes. We know that the majority of our readers are men, and there could be some of you whom might like the idea of a ceramic all-white watch. What do you think? We welcome you to share your thoughts with us in the comments section below. And the ladies too. Let your voice be heard!
Our friends at Revolution Watch is also publishing a review of this very same watch, written by none other than their Editor in Chief, Adi Soon, who may have a different perspective. We will link to his article here when they go live.
Technical Specifications and Price
– Central hour-minute hands, small-seconds at 9H, date window at 6H
– Central chronograph seconds hand, 60-minute and 12-hour recorder at 3H
– Case: White ceramic [ZrO2]
– Bracelet: Leather
– Clasp: White ceramic [ZrO2] – Titanium
– Diameter: 44.25 mm Height: 16.14 mm
– Water resistant up to: 5 bar (50 m / 167 ft)
– Polished-brushed case
– Polished ceramic bezel; matte chromium nitride tachymeter scale
– Polished crown, Ω engraved + matte chromium nitride
– Polished pushers, polished grade 5 titanium tubes
– Box-form scratch-resistant sapphire crystals:
• Bezel-side: anti-reflective treatment on both sides
• Caseback-side: bevelled, anti-reflective treatment inside
– Polished ceramic caseback ring with matte chromium nitride marks, as well as “White Side Of The Moon”
– “Moonwatch” style dial with 2 subdials:
• White ceramic dial; 18K white gold applied indexes
• Dial engraved with “[ZrO2]” (above center hole); “Speedmaster” in red
• White Super-LumiNova on indexes and 2 dots at 12H
– “Moonwatch” style hands:
• Diamond-polished, 18K white gold hands, except central chrono seconds hand (polished, rhodium-plated with red tip)
• White Super-LumiNova on H-M-chrono seconds hands
– White leather strap
– Foldover clasp, ceramic top-bottom covers and pushers; polished grade 5 titanium frame-spring folders
– Fitting : 21 mm between lugs, 18 mm on buckle
– Special presentation box
– 4-year warranty
Recommended Retail Price:
White ceramic on leather strap (318.104.22.168.04.002) – SG$16,750
White ceramic on leather strap with 74 diamonds set in Pt850 platinum Liquidmetal® (322.214.171.124.55.001) – SG$33,350