Omega Seamaster 300: A Classic Diving Watch
The Omega Seamaster 300 is as coveted now as it was upon its release over 60 years ago. Fans adore this watch for its combination of classic looks and modern technology, such as a co-axial escapement and magnetic resistance to 15,000 gauss.
A Modern Classic Since 1957
The Seamaster 300 is a true classic among diving watches. It has been part of the Omega catalog since 1957 and is akin to the Rolex Submariner and Blancpain Fifty Fathoms in terms of what it means to this traditional manufacturer from Biel, Switzerland. In the beginning, it was a watch for military and professional divers thanks to its water-resistance of 300 m (30 bar, 984 ft). Since then, the Seamaster 300 has developed into an all-around sports watch that fits just as well with outdoor gear as it does with a suit.
Little has changed about the Seamaster 300's design since its debut more than 60 years ago. Modern editions still feature an arrow-shaped hour hand and triangular hour markers. The Arabic numerals at 3, 6, 9, and 12 o'clock are also holdovers from the original Seamaster 300 ref. CK2913, as are the luminous material on the hands and indices and the diving bezel with a glow-in-the-dark zero marker.
However, Omega's engineers have continually renewed the watch's technical specs over the years, as stainless steel gave way to make room for titanium, platinum, ceramic, and Omega's own Sedna Gold alloy (made of gold, copper, and palladium). In 2021, the brand added their own so-called Bronze Gold to the line-up. This material is composed of bronze, gold, silver, and palladium – a combination that makes this timepiece both corrosion-resistant and hypoallergenic.
Over the years, the manufacturer has also brought their movements up to modern technical standards. The calibers found in current models are not only outfitted with Omega's proven co-axial escapement, but also boast Master Chronometer certification from METAS (the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology). This means that the movements are especially accurate and reliable. They also feature protection against shocks and jolts and can resist magnetic fields of up to 15,000 gauss.
Reasons to Buy a Seamaster 300
- Water-resistant to 300 m (30 bar, 984 ft)
- METAS-certified Master Chronometer calibers
- Co-axial escapement for improved shock and magnetic resistance
- Available in stainless steel, gold, titanium, Bronze Gold, or platinum
- Limited editions, such as the Spectre and the 1957 Trilogy
How much does a Seamaster 300 cost?
|Seamaster 300 reference||Price (approx.)||Material, caliber|
|188.8.131.52.03.002||44,400 USD||Platinum, 8401|
|184.108.40.206.99.002||26,300 USD||Yellow gold, lapis lazuli, 8913|
|220.127.116.11.01.002||15,900 USD||Sedna gold, 8401|
|CK2913||14,300 USD||Stainless steel, 501|
|18.104.22.168.01.001 Spectre||10,400 USD||Stainless steel, Sedna gold, 8400|
|22.214.171.124.10.001||10,000 USD||Bronze Gold, 8912|
|14755||9,000 USD||Stainless steel, 552|
|126.96.36.199.01.001 Trilogy||7,300 USD||Stainless steel, 8806|
|188.8.131.52.03.001||6,600 USD||Titanium, 8400|
|184.108.40.206.01.001||5,900 USD||Stainless steel, 8912|
|220.127.116.11.01.002||5,200 USD||Stainless steel, 8400|
The Seamaster 300 in detail
The main difference between Omega Seamaster 300 variants is the use of materials. Current models come with the option of a stainless steel, gold, Bronze Gold, titanium, or platinum case. The bands come in the same choices, as well as in leather.
Pricing for Seamaster 300 models varies accordingly. The most affordable option is the 41-mm model in stainless steel with a black dial, black ceramic bezel, and Master Co-Axial caliber 8400. You'll recognize this timepiece by the luminous numerals 3, 6, 9, and 12 applied to its dial. The Omega logo sits at the 12 o'clock position, and the Seamaster lettering as well as the inscription "Master Co-Axial Chronometer" can be found at 6. You can buy this watch on a leather strap for about 5,200 USD; the version on a stainless steel bracelet will cost you around 200 USD more.
Omega also offers a technically identical watch in titanium, with a dark blue dial and matching blue bezel insert. You can purchase this version for around 6,500 USD on a leather strap, or 6,600 USD on a titanium bracelet.
The Seamaster 300 is also available in several two-tone editions. You can choose between watches in stainless steel and yellow or Sedna gold, as well as models in titanium and Sedna gold, Omega's rose gold alloy. The stainless steel and yellow gold combo changes hands for between 6,700 and 10,000 USD, depending on its condition and whether it comes on a leather or metal band. The same watch in stainless steel and Sedna gold will cost around 400 USD more. Prices for titanium and Sedna gold models range from 8,900 to 11,300 USD, depending on the band.
Seamaster 300 Update 2021: New Movement and Vintage Look
Omega released a revised version of the Seamaster 300 in 2021, but other than being equipped with the caliber 8912, this new watch differs little from previous editions.
One difference is the dial, which, like vintage watches from the 1950s, is a "sandwich dial" comprised of two layers: an upper matte black anodized layer with cutout numerals and indices, and a lower layer coated with artificially-aged lume. This new dial is a good millimeter wider than its predecessor, but this doesn't affect the diameter of the case, which still measures 41 mm.
The new watch also features a second hand with a rounded tip known as a "lollipop hand" – another nod to Seamaster models from the 1950s.
Omega offers this stainless steel watch with the choice of a black or blue dial and stainless steel bracelet or leather strap. Depending on the combination, this timepiece will set you back between 5,500 and 6,000 USD.
Prices for the Seamaster 300 in Precious Metal
Omega also produces the Seamaster 300 in solid yellow gold, Sedna gold, or platinum. The gold editions use the Co-Axial Master Chronometer caliber 8401. This movement is identical to the 8400 except for its rose gold balance bridge and rotor. You can call a never-worn Seamaster 300 in yellow gold your own for roughly 17,200 USD on a leather strap. That price climbs to nearly 26,700 USD for the same watch on an 18-karat gold bracelet. Sedna gold models occupy a similar price range and demand 15,900 USD on a leather strap and nearly 27,900 USD on a gold bracelet.
The Seamaster 300 with a Bronze Gold case joined the collection in 2021. Bronze Gold is Omega's own bronze, gold, silver, and palladium alloy, and has some advantages over other bronze watches. The material is less likely to irritate your skin and takes longer to develop a patina. The color of the case is complemented by this timepiece's dark brown sandwich dial with vintage lume. The watch comes with the Master Chronometer-certified caliber 8912 and sells on Chrono24 for approximately 10,000 USD.
In 2019, Omega introduced two more yellow gold Seamaster 300 watches. The most notable difference to the previous models is their colorful dials. One comes in green malachite and the other shines in blue lapis lazuli. Humans have had a fascination with both of these minerals since antiquity. Each comes with a matching blue or green bezel insert and crocodile leather strap. Inside the case, you'll find the in-house caliber 8913. Like the other movements in this series, it comes with a co-axial escapement and Master Chronometer certification. The green edition requires an investment of around 20,400 USD, while the blue sells for about 26,300 USD.
Platinum Watches: Exclusive Elegance
As of spring 2020, the malachite and lapis lazuli editions are also available in platinum. Otherwise, these timepieces are identical to their gold counterparts. You can purchase a platinum Seamaster 300 with a green malachite dial for about 40,000 USD. The version with a lapis lazuli dial changes hands for approximately 32,000 USD.
Omega also crafts platinum watches with the same dark blue dial, bezel, and leather strap as the titanium Seamaster 300. However, what makes these timepieces truly special is that they are limited editions. The version on a leather strap is limited to 757 copies and costs around 28,800 USD. The variant on a platinum bracelet is even rarer, with a limited run of only 375 pieces. This exclusive watch will set you back about 44,500 USD.
Watches for Fans of James Bond and Retro Timepieces
If you've ever wanted to know what it feels like to be an agent on Her Majesty's Secret Service, you may want to take a look at the special edition "Spectre" released in 2015. Technically speaking, this watch is a standard stainless steel Seamaster 300. However, the Spectre was limited to 7,007 pieces and features a lollipop seconds hand and "007" engraving on its clasp. Furthermore, Omega produced this watch with a gray and black NATO strap, just like the one worn by Daniel Craig in his penultimate outing as James Bond. Some other differences seen on this edition: there's a 0 to 11 scale on the bezel, rather than the usual 60-minute scale, which means the wearer can keep track of the time in a second time zone, and the 12 on the dial had to make room for the Omega logo. This special James Bond watch will set you back about 10,500 USD.
In 2017, Omega celebrated the Seamaster 300's 60th anniversary with the release of the Seamaster 1957 Trilogy edition. Limited to a run of 3,557 pieces, it is almost an exact copy of the original from 1957. Unlike its 41-mm sibling models, the 1957 Trilogy takes its 39-mm diameter, lack of an arrow-tipped second hand, and smaller bidirectional bezel from its historical predecessor. While the standard version has a sapphire crystal case back, this edition features one made of stainless steel. The state-of-the-art Master Chronometer movement 8806 powers this retro watch. You can call this beautiful timepiece your own for about 7,300 USD in new condition.
Prices for Vintage Models
Vintage Seamaster 300 watches are highly coveted among collectors, especially those with the reference number CK2913 from the 1950s. Omega produced eight variations of this model between 1957 and 1961. The differences between each version are minimal and come down to the shape of the second hand or the bezel design. Prices vary by the exact model and its condition; however, a CK2913 usually costs between 13,000 and 24,000 USD.
Watches from subsequent series are generally more affordable. For example, a well-maintained Seamaster ref. 14755 demands about 9,000 USD. Buying a ref. 165.014 from the mid-1960s will set you back a similar amount. Prices for this watch sit around 9,800 USD.
The History of the Seamaster 300
The Seamaster collection began life as a simple, all-purpose men's watch in the late 1940s. Contrary to its name, Omega didn't create the original models for underwater use. Instead, the Seamaster took to the skies. Royal Air Force pilots received early versions of the Seamaster as part of their gear. However, the release of the 300 model in 1957 marked a shift in the direction of the Seamaster collection. The 300 took the Seamaster from a plain men's watch to a timepiece that can truly master the challenges of the sea.
At the time of its introduction, recreational scuba diving was not yet widespread. Therefore, the first Seamaster 300 with reference number CK2913 predominantly found itself on the wrists of servicepeople and professional divers. Some of the most well-known wearers included French oceanographer Jacques Cousteau and his team. In 1963, they donned the watch while building and inhabiting the "Precontinent II" underwater settlement in the Red Sea. Omega also provided the United Kingdom's land and sea military forces with 300s.
If you need a watch that can dive even deeper or has a chronograph function, look no further than the Planet Ocean 600M, which is also a member of the Seamaster family.