The Nomos Orion Neomatik is back in a new black, and while it’s been too long since I’ve written about the brand, I’m glad to be back. So, I’m going to let loose here and get you all the details. At first glance, it could be mistaken as just a black dial and steel case, but there’s a little more going on here.
While the Orion might seem like a simple watch with not a lot that can be done to differentiate it from model to model, Nomos Orion Neomatik has made a number of subtle updates here across the three different sizes. First, you’ll notice that the black galvanized dial is streamlined due to the lack of a sunken subsidiary seconds. Instead, the sub-seconds is flush with the rest of the dial creating a cleaner design. That cleanliness continues across the 36mm and 38.5mm (39, they call it) models with no date, powered by the DUW3001 movement with 43 hours of power reserve. On the 41mm version, you get a color-matched date with gold font.
I was recently gifted a pair of my late grandfather’s gold cufflinks. My grandma thought it would go well with the tuxedo I have (and wear maybe once a year). While I would love to wear them and remember my granddad, my first thought was: I don’t really wear gold watches, so what kind of black tie watch could I wear that would pair well with yellow-gold cufflinks? Apparently, Nomos has solved that problem here by subtly mixing and matching steel and gold.
These Nomos Orion Neomatik watches are a great fit for dressy situations because they’re relatively thin (8.4mm, 8.7mm, and 9.4mm) for automatic calibers at the price thanks to their really solid calibers (the DUW3001 and DUW6101) with Nomos’ swing system escapement. Some people might find the price a bit high, edging into Tudor territory, but I think it’s worth it for Nomos’ design, watchmaking, and nice finishing which you can see through the display caseback. And while it’s not a massive upgrade, the brand has been able to eke out an extra bit of water resistance in the case, upping it from 30m to 50m, taking it from splashproof to what I would call “splash-proof-plus.”
I’m generally a fan of sunken subdials, though I also prefer any sub-seconds over none – I’d much rather take a Lange 1815 over a Saxonia Thin from an aesthetic standpoint, for instance. But here, the flat dial works with the austere Bauhaus design of the Nomos, possibly even better than previous releases. My only criticism is that by mixing and matching the touches to each watch in gold, you potentially will find a few customers who will find their preferred combination in a different size case. What if you wanted gold hands in a 36mm case? Well, then you’re frankly stuck with having to decide between the still-solid options before you.