OMEGA UNVEILS ITS’ NEW IN-HOUSE
DEVELOPED AND ‘ MANUFACTURE ’ MOVEMENTS
2007 has been an important year for OMEGA with the most significant step it has taken being the launch of its in-house movement, the 8500 and 8501. These new calibres are incorporated for the first time in a revolutionary collection of timepieces within the new De Ville range, the Hour Vision.
Once known for producing its’ own movements and indeed holding the unique reputation of being the producer of the first industrialized movement, the coming of the calibre 8500/8501 heralds a new era for OMEGA. Following the successful incorporation of the Co-Axial escapement into a number of self-winding movements beginning with the calibre 2500 eight years ago, Omega now produces all of the 202 components of the new calibre. In embarking on this ambitious project, OMEGA’s aim was to up-grade its existing proprietary Co-Axial technology. The Co-Axial escapement touches the very heart of the watch by re-engineering the component that provides the regular transmission of energy to the mechanism. Together with the free-sprung balance, the Co-Axial escapement offers optimal stability to the watch’s running rate over long periods and enhances the performance of the timepiece. In addition, the need for oil in this tiny component is virtually eliminated.
The automatic mechanism is driven by a highly efficient bi-directional rotor. The energy is then transmitted through two barrels providing the watch with an impressive power reserve of 60 hours. Adjusting the watch when travelling through time-zones is simple since the hour hand can be moved separately from the minutes and seconds hands. The 8500/8501 calibres naturally are COSC-certified chronometers.
As you would expect from a movement of this category, great care has been taken in the finishing and decorating of the components. In the case of the Calibre 8501, the rotor and balance bridge are fashioned out of 18-carat red gold. The presence of 18-carat red gold components is reminiscent of OMEGA’s rich watch making heritage since historically red gold had been used in OMEGA movements. The screws, barrels and the balance wheel are all blackened. This was to create an unusual and contemporary matt finish. The bridges and the rotor are decorated with an “arabesque” Côtes de Genève pattern which in itself is a world premier.
In the case of the 8500, the elegant monochrome look is created by using all rhodium and black details, rendering a futuristic finish to this timepiece.
The beauty of the movement is clearly visible through sapphire glass apertures in the side of the case and through the sapphire crystal case back. Omega’s future, clearly visible through the looking glass.
Pictures - omegawatches.com