OMEGA’s just released the OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime. The new watch takes its cue from the hit T Rex song. And just like Bang a Gong‘s lyrics, the reasoning behind the OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime is incomprehensible.
OMEGA sells sporty and dressy watches to the upper middle of the mass market. Five-hundred and seventy-five components powering a 1/10th of a second chronograph that chimes elapsed time says the Speedmaster Chrono Chime is a giant leap into high horology (as opposed to Marc Bolan’s quick descent into low whorology).
How does the OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime help the OMEGA brand? While the price hasn’t been released, I reckon the OSCC will cost ten times OMEGA’s most expensive timepiece. I guess that’s a question best left to practitioners of the Dark Arts (i.e., the watchmaker’s PR team).
More interestingly, why would you – or anyone else – buy an OMEGA Chrono Chime? Here are three totally compelling reasons.
The OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime Crowns Your Moonwatch Collection
Does anyone know how many Moonwatch/Speedmaster variants OMEGA has produced since Neil Armstrong flubbed his “one small step” line? As Swatch X Moonwatch mania proves, there’s no leap OMEGA won’t take to bank big bucks on the Speedmaster’s otherworldly rep.
Six years and 17 patents in the making, the OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime is a Moonwatch/Speedmaster like no other (except for its instantly recognizable looks). If you collect such things, this is the One Moonwatch To Rule Them All.
In terms of rarity, OMEGA plans on making just five Chrono Chimes per year (assuming the one watchmaker who assembles the movement doesn’t go mad). In terms of price, again, OMEGA ain’t sayin’. But a Blancpain Minute Repeater sells for $200k to $400k. Which reminds me . . .
The Speedy Chrono Chime is the Ideal OMEGA X Blancpain Collaboration
OMEGA developed the Chrono Chime “with” sister brand Blancpain. I reckon OMEGA instructed Blancpain’s boffins to put a Zenith El Primero-style chronograph in a Speedmaster case, add some bells, warned them not to f*ck up OMEGA’s logo and called it good.
Fair’s fair! If not for its slightly higher price and significantly lower water resistance, a Blancpain Fifty Fathoms could be an OMEGA Planet Ocean. By the same token, if not for the Speedmaster case and a chrono with 1932 Olympics’ accuracy, the Speedmaster Chrono Chime could a Blancpain minute repeater.
For [the five] buyers who covet Blancpain’s legendary engineering prowess in a watch with better brand recognition amongst the rabble, the Speedmaster Chrono Chime kills two birds with one sonic stone.
The OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime is a Cool Toy
Daniel Quare perfected the chiming watch in 1678 – a useful time-telling device before electric lights, when you didn’t want a clock bonging you awake. Chimes change. Watchmakers started catering to social chimers – buyers who only wanted the complication to sound when summoned.
All the big name high horologists still make “minute repeaters” for fabulous people (at fabulous prices). As far as I know, this is the first chiming chronograph because, let’s face it, why? Why chime a timed event?
Because you can! Well now you can. The OMEGA Speedmaster Chrono Chime is a unique watch. The fact that it weighs a ton (326g or .7 lbs.) and serves no practical purpose only makes it more unique. And less OMEGA.