Hands-On: The New Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra in Green Omega's Most Versatile Watch by Robert-Jan BroerMarch 04, 2020 MIN READHands-On: The New Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra in Green
Omega recently added two new dials for its successful Seamaster Aqua Terra collection. One in blue, and one in green. While blue could already be found on previous Aqua Terra models, green was only used for details, like on the PGA edition of the watch.
An entirely green dial is new for the Seamaster Aqua Terra collection. And, quite to my surprise, I must say it looks damn good. I was already quite impressed by the green accents on the Aqua Terra PGA edition (which we reviewed here). To me, those accents made it one of the most attractive watches in this collection. And now, a few weeks ago, Omega started to deliver these green (and new blue) dial Aqua Terra watches to its boutiques.
The brand commenced delivery before the press release hit our inbox. A rare move, but one that will, I’m sure, be appreciated by those hoping to get one on their wrists. You’ll often find quite some time between a release being announced and it winding up in the window. Omega had the green Seamaster Aqua Terra ready for us, so we could go hands-on with it and share some thoughts with you. Without further ado, let’s have a closer look.
Seamaster Aqua Terra in Green (126.96.36.199.10.001)
This new Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra in green is essentially identical to all the current models in 41mm. It uses the Master Chronometer certified caliber 8900 movement while the 38mm diameter Aqua Terra models use the Omega caliber 8800. There are a few small differences between these calibers, like the power reserve for example (5 hours less) and the dimensions of the movement. Aesthetically, it is the same as all the other Aqua Terras, with a beautiful teak deck motif on the dial and a date aperture at 6 o’clock. The date at 6 o’clock is actually quite nice and most probably a nod to the very early Seamaster Calendar watches from the 1950s. Those were the ones with the famous bumper movements that had the date located at the same position.
The date at 6 is a nod to the very early Seamaster Calendar watches from the 1950s
The hands are a bit of a mixture, but clearly find their origin in the 1957 “Professional” models that Omega introduced: The Seamaster 300, Railmaster, and Speedmaster. They are relatively large, luminous, and expertly faceted. Even without the lume, they are perfectly readable in low-light conditions. The same goes for the applied arrow-shaped numerals, which I also find on the vintage Constellation and Seamaster from the 1950s I have in my own collection. Of course, the case design has also been heavily influenced by those 1957 models with lyre lugs.
The Seamaster Aqua Terra collection
The teak deck motif has been used for the Seamaster Aqua Terra collection since 2008 (the Aqua Terra collection was introduced in 2002). In 2008, Omega started to use their in-house caliber 8500 movement for these watches until 2017, when Omega updated the entire collection with new dials and new movements (caliber 8800 and 8900).
Meanwhile, Omega also introduced Seamaster Aqua Terra models with an annual calendar, world time complication and GMT complication. Oh, and let’s not forget about the Seamaster Aqua Terra Ultra Light, targeted at professional sportspeople who are in the need for a light-weight watch. We published the entire history of the Seamaster Aqua Terra collection back in 2017 in this article on Fratello when it was the 15th anniversary of the Aqua Terra.
Strap or Bracelet
The two new Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra watches, with blue and green dials, come in two versions each. One with alligator strap in matching color and the other one with a stainless steel bracelet. For this article, we used the Seamaster Aqua Terra in green with the (dark) green alligator strap.
I am definitely a bracelet guy most of the time. Despite this, I must admit the alligator straps by Omega are very comfortable and their availability makes the Seamaster Aqua Terra quite a versatile watch. The difference in price between the alligator strap and stainless steel bracelet is €300. That’s low enough to make the bracelet and easy choice for me. I would add a green alligator strap later on. An alligator strap from Omega can also easily set you back €330 (the price of the Omega alligator strap for my beloved Globemaster) and then you’d need a folding clasp as well (probably around €250). However, getting a stainless steel bracelet, later on, sets you back a little bit more than that.
It all depends on your lifestyle as well, and mine has very little swimming involved.
If you’re not a bracelet person, the strap is the way to go. Rest assured, the quality is amazing. Putting it on a bracelet does make the watch a bit more versatile though. It makes the watch suitable for both formal and informal occasions. Those who are after just buying one good watch for themselves (perhaps even for the rest of your life), and take a watch into the water occasionally the bracelet is the way to go.
And talking about having one watch for the rest of your life, the Omega caliber 8900 is definitely up to the task. Nothing much has changed, I have to say. Whenever I pick one of my vintage Omega Seamasters or Constellations up from the safe, they immediately start to run (those are mainly caliber 5xx movements). They still run fine, even after all those decades. The modern Omega movements are, of course, better in terms of build quality (lower tolerances), precision, and anti-magnetism. That makes me very confident that a caliber 8900 movement is a partner for life (and your children’s lives). There’s not much writing out there on the movements, but they are actually not only very well made, but also beautiful to observe via the sapphire caseback.
Certified by METAS
The finishing is very pretty, with its Geneva waves in Arabesque on the bridges and on the rotor, blued screws and red filled engravings. Technically speaking, in this caliber 8900 movement, you’ll find a free-sprung balance wheel, silicon (Si14) hairspring, and a Co-Axial escapement.
This one is more advanced than the very first ones introduced in 1999. The watch is Master Chronometer certified by METAS (an independent third party), meaning that not only the chronometer movement has been tested and certified, but the entire watch (after casing the movement) has been tested against incredibly high standards for precision, anti-magnetism, shock resistance, and water resistance. All information about these tests by Omega and the certification by METAS can be found here.
At €5,100 this watch offers good value. It bests most of the competition at this price point. The Seamaster Aqua Terra is a perfect all-rounder. It has enough water resistance for normal use (unless you’re a professional diver), it features the Omega caliber 8900 movement with independent hour hand (useful for frequent travelers), and it is a stylistically versatile watch that’s wearable under any circumstance (formal, sports, and everything in-between).
Of course, this has been the case since 2017 when Omega updated the entire Seamaster Aqua Terra collection. The new green dial doesn’t change this at all. But it is a very welcome color for a watch like this. This green version would be my pick for an Aqua Terra. I prefer it even over the golf edition of the Aqua Terra with green elements. Reference 188.8.131.52.10.001 (on the strap) is €4,800. I would happily shell out €300 more for reference 184.108.40.206.10.001 on the bracelet. More information via Omega online.
Brand Omega ModelSeamaster Aqua TerraReference220.127.116.11.10.001DialGreenCase MaterialStainless SteelCase DimensionsDiameter: 41mmCrystalSapphireCase BackSapphireMovementCaliber 8900, Power Reserve: 60 hours, Master Chronometer certified by METAS, Anti magnetic up to 15,000 gaussWater Resistance150 metersStrapAlligator strapFunctionsTime, DatePrice€5100,-Warranty5 years of international warranty Watch of the Week
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About the author
Ever since he was a young child, Robert-Jan was drawn to watches, even though it were digital Casio and quartz Swatch models at the time. In the mid-1990s, his interest increased when he started to read about mechanical watches in… read more
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