In this article, we’ll take a look at the best entry-level Omega watches for men.
Omega stands unique as a luxury watch brand. Despite its historical significance (went to the moon) and pop culture cache (Bond, 1995-present), Omega remains a noble understated presence in the industry.
Perhaps it’s because they aren’t auction house darlings like Patek and Rolex. Still, Omega boasts just as many horological innovations as their competitors and an equally large base of collectors.
This prestige and fabled history make this Swiss heavy hitter intimidating to first time buyers.
However, entry-level Omega watches are not only more affordable than their competitors, but there’s one for every type of guy!
Short on time? Here are our top three picks for the best entry level Omega watches you can buy right now:
Read on for more info and the complete list…
Omega Watch Price
As mentioned, Omegas don’t always fetch the big bucks at Christie’s and Sotheby’s. Lovers of the brand tend to keep their watches for themselves, often passing them on to their sons instead of selling and trading.
I advise entry-level Omega buyers to mostly avoid the investment component of Omega acquisition.
Omegas are expensive not simply due to marketing dollars. The science and art that go into building one of these horological triumphs is evident with any transparent case back.
To get your money’s worth, I recommend that you stick to the basics.
Least Expensive Omega Watch
You at least want your Omega to retain its value. That’s best done by sticking to the fundamentals, which opportunely also make your watch more timeless and less expensive.
Stick to stainless steel and avoid limited editions, especially if gems have been added to the face. The face’s diamond may retain its value, but an Omega is less likely to when embellished.
Cheapest Omega Watches: The Roundup
Here they are in no particular order…
1. Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch
Houston, we have an icon. Let’s start with Omega’s Bo Jackson.
The Speedmaster debuted in the late 50’s as a racing watch. Omega built the Speedy using a complex and coveted caliber fashioned by Albert Piguet and now exclusive to Omega.
Buzz Aldrin famously wore his Omega Speedmaster to the moon – just one of several space missions that the Speedy embarks on. I make a point not to constantly compare Omega to Rolex.
Yet, the Speedmaster beating out the Cosmograph during NASA’s qualification tests is an important duel in chronometry’s history.
For over half a decade, the tried-and-true design of the Speedmaster remained mostly unchanged. The case is 42mm but is compact lug to lug at less than 48mm, so this watch effectively fits a range of wrists.
And if that’s still too big for you, it’s pretty easy to find a used Speedmaster Reduced, the Speedy Pro’s 38mm automatic cousin, on the internet.
The fixed black bezel marked with a tachymeter scale, the matte black face, and the three subdials that just touch the three, six, and nine hour markers are an iconic and immediately recognizable combination.
In the grand tradition of Omega, no design detail is too small or without reason. Look closely at the face and hands, and you’ll notice a fine grain texture that’ll absorb reflection.
The subdials are recessed for dimension and subtle distinction, and the contrasting hands go all the way out, scanning the edge of the dial.
This ninja-level aesthetic balance makes the Speedy an exceedingly legible chronograph.
It comes with either a sapphire crystal or hesalite. The sapphire version includes the extra indulgence of a transparent back that exposes the movement along with the functioning chronograph action.
Finally, being NASA-approved means the Speedmaster can handle spaceflight and interstellar activity off the spacecraft. This isn’t relevant to most of us, but it’s certainly a testament to its durability.
2. Seamaster Professional 300 Quartz
I admit I’m biased towards the Seamaster Pro 300 since it’s my go-to quartz watch. But really, there are few quartz pieces that have the lore that the Pro 300 does.
Many know this watch as the inaugural 007 Omega, debuting during the great Rolex switch of ’95. By 2005’s Casino Royale, Bond even namedrops Omega, cinching its pop culture status.
The Seamaster line also has real-life historical importance, as the switch was made due to Bond’s fictional service with the British Navy, to which the Seamaster has an affiliation.
As with any good sport watch, it’s made of stainless steel, with a blue, sloped unidirectional bezel that makes the most satisfyingly crisp sound when you rotate it.
The sapphire crystal beautifully domes over the Seamaster’s blue dial, which is marked with the classic wave pattern, and features skeletal hour and minute hands.
I prefer the mid-sized 36.25mm case because I have smaller wrists, though it’s a size that works for most men. The mid-sized bezel’s Arabic numbers are also slimmer and cleaner looking, in my opinion.
The 300 Quartz wears exactly like the automatic, so you get to feel the weight of a classic Swiss-crafted timepiece on your wrist, but with the modern-day accuracy of a quartz movement. It’s like having a prewar home with smart-house technology.
And for lovers of the brand, this model represents a significant turning point for Omega. After the Seamaster line lost its way in the 80’s and fell into fashion watch territory, the 300 put it back on course as a real dive watch. It was this back-to-tool-basics evolution that caught Bond producers’ eyes.
The Pro 300 started the line’s road to legend status, which has long been secured. Not too shabby for around 2k!
3. Seamaster Aqua Terra
Technically, the Aqua Terra is a subcollection under the Seamaster umbrella. In our roundup, think of the Aqua Terra as the Seamaster 300 after he’s had a proper shave.
This timepiece has highly polished remnants of its tool watch ancestry, moving from sporty-to-casual to casual-to-dressy. The 300 has wavy lines on its face, symbolic of adventurous deep-sea diving. The Aqua Terra features straight panels, evocative of a luxury yacht’s decks.
Instead of circular markers to indicate most of the hours, the Aqua Terra features long sleek swords.
Its face is framed by a smooth steel bezel, and the 0-60 Scale is moved into the face for a cleaner look. The hour and minute hands are tapered, unlike the fatter skeletal hands of the Pro 300.
Despite being the genteel member of Seamaster’s extended family, this watch has impressive features beyond the style realm. It’s a certified chronometer powered by Omega’s caliber 8900, the industry’s highest standard by the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology.
It’s resistant to magnetic fields reaching 15,000 gauss, which is about as magnetic as an MRI.
Note that newer models of the Aqua Terra are more symmetrical because the date window is at the six hour mark instead of the three hour mark. Newer models also have the day at the top of the dial.
4. Omega Constellation
You know how 2010s Tom Brady was equally comfortable tuxedo’d up on a Movado ad as he was throwing a football 24,000 feet right before being tackled by 400lb lineman on the field? That’s this watch.
It’s fancy, yet undeniably a man’s watch.
The first Constellation came out in 1952 after Omega won several celestial observatory chronometry competitions, and immediately became a flagship line.
In the 1980s, the Manhattan model came out which gave us the Constellation design language we now recognize, including the two claws on each side of the case to hold the crystal, and the Roman numerals on the bezel.
The models we’re recommending today are the early 2000s iteration and the newer versions that visually take after it. These versions take the Constellation’s dress watch pedigree and effectively man it up by giving its elegant features more size and edge.
A defining feature is how the bracelet’s wideness integrates with the watch face, then tapers out. That and the thick, angular case, gives the Constellation a sport watch-like bulk. However, the case wears flatly on your wrist, so the extra weight isn’t cumbersome.
The extra volume gives it gravitas – it’s a king’s crown, not a tiara.
This is a great watch for men with small wrists because even the 35mm wears big yet lightly due to the integrated bracelet.
This Constellation comes in quartz and automatic. The quartz is exceptionally precise, and the automatic features the Omega Co-Axial escapement.
Like the Aqua Terra, the most recent versions have leaned hard into a more symmetrical aesthetic by moving the date on the six-hour marker from the three and the day up top at the 12.
And like the Aqua Terra, they’re both fancy but unassuming. The Constellation is a dry land, art deco compliment to the Aqua Terra’s nautical bent.
5. Omega De Ville Prestige
For entry-level recommendations, I don’t often consider a watch that’s so strictly in the dress category. The Omega De Ville Prestige line, however fancy, is an understated and versatile choice for a first Omega.
Besides, I know some of you guys out there are fancy, and we’ve got all of you covered today.
The Omega De Ville was originally a Seamaster sub series, but it broke away in the late ’60s, as Seamaster went in the dive direction and De Ville continued representing Omega in the classic dress watch realm.
As with the other entries on this list, there are many remixes of this line’s original design. And as with the others, we’re sticking to the simplest design that most resembles its forefathers.
The case is unobtrusive, with a clean elegant bezel and stately Roman numerals at 12, three, six, and nine. The face is mostly empty which gives a vintage feel since minimalism is rare in contemporary men’s watch faces. At 36.8mm and 42mm lug to lug, it’s a classy option for men with smaller wrists.
The seven-link chain bracelet looks opulent but not over-the-top, especially in stainless steel. It’s reminiscent of older rice-bead bracelets that Omega used to do a lot more of.
The De Ville isn’t just a line of handsome faces though, as it features the horologically respectable Co-Axial escapement just like the Constellation, and a sapphire crystal.
Regardless, the De Ville Prestige is one of the lowest dollar points of entry for new contemporary Omega watches. If you decide to top it off with add-ons, like a two-tone bracelet or jewels, you can too easily slide out of the entry-level category, as well as the timeless category.
This watch isn’t seen out in the wild as often as its sportier cousins are. If you opt for the De Ville Prestige, you’ll likely catch the eye of specialists, excited to see such a rarity and impressed by your ability to discern quality and history over price tag.
Now that you know how attainable entry-level Omega watches can be, I hope you’ll have fun finding your inaugural watch.
Are you an adventurer? Then the Omega Seamaster 300 might be your guy. A black-tie kind of gent? Opt for the Constellation.
The good news is that no matter which watch or watches you go for, the Omega brand will guarantee you a quality timepiece. It’s all about choosing your favorite features and how you want the watch to represent you.