Saturday, June 05, 2010

This is what I got....

This watch basically completes my watch collection. It is the Omega Speedmaster Professional X-33 Gen 1, model number 3290.50.00. True that the watch does not have the tri-compax design that I am looking for but since I only have two wrists.....

Anyway I consider myself very lucky to get this watch. Why? Well I got it at a very very good price for a pre-loved piece. It comes with the titanium bracelet. How much you ask? I got it for a tad above USD 600 with 3 straps. The titanium bracelet, the long velcro strap and a 'local' leather strap. True that the watch comes without the box and papers, but at that price.......

The watch. It is currently fitted with the grey Taikonaut NATO strap. I think it looks good with the strap. The grey colour matches with the grey LCD display.

I have checked the watch for the common Gen 1 issues, collapsed crown and non working backlight. Both are OK. Also checked that the minute hands moves twice in 1 minute (to make sure it is not a fake). The seller (watch shop) was willing to remove the case back and I had a look at the movement. It is the Omega Caliber 1666.

The AR coating on the crystal is in bad shape but it does not effect the readability of the watch. I am not too concern about the AR coating as replacement crystal is still available from Omega as the watch is still in production, just not available to the general public. At the moment, the watch is available to active pilots (military) and astronauts.

The major differences between Gen 1, model reference 3290.50.00 and Gen 2, model reference 3291.50 are the winding crown, the bezel and the inscription on the case back.

The Gen 1.

The Gen 2.

Photographs: Omega

The differences:

1. Bezel insert, polished on Gen 1, matte on Gen 2, Luminous pip on Gen 2 at 12 o'clock position.
2. Buttons: Polished on Gen 1 and matte on Gen 2
3. Crown: Horizontal serration on Gen 1 and vertical serration on Gen 2.
4. Case back: Gen 2 inscribed with 'FLIGHT QUALIFIED BY NASA FOR SPACE MISSIONS'.

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