Who would pay 170€ for a Nato? Not many, you’d think, but there are plenty of people who do. In this post I’ll try to review Omega Nato against some of the cheaper alternatives that I have in my possession. The contenders are three relatively standard Nato straps: Omega Nato, Phoenix Nato and Blushark Orca.
Omega Nato, ref ZSZ002084, has polished hardware. The topmost keeper has etched O M E G A text. To be honest, it is nearly impossible to make judgment of the quality of the hardware, but Omega hardware is by far the shiniest and most regular.
Phoenix Nato has polished hardware. The hardware is a notch bellow Omega hardware and there are irregularities.
Blushark Nato can be ordered with polished or brushed Hardware. The hardware is perhaps a step above Phoenix Nato, but probably not in a way that matters.
Omega Nato has a very fine and dense weave. It feels like a canvas strap, which is nice instead of seatbelt cloth. The watch head has no problems staying put on the strap. The cloth is soft, but not as soft as some of the popular nato straps advertised as soft. During the ownership I haven’t seen a thread come loose and it doesn’t easily get on to stuff.
Phoenix Nato has a smoother weave, but not as smooth as Omega. During the first hour of ownership threads came loose from the strap holes. The strap ages fast, but the ageing seems to stop after about month. The Phoenix Nato is softest of all of the straps in this review. Phoenix Nato has by far the glossiest texture.
Blushark Nato has a more coarse weave than either the Omega or Phoenix. The Blushark Orca strap is my all-time favourite, but I have also included the standard Nato into the review. The blushark straps are harder than Omega.
Omega Nato comes in intermediate sizes: 19,5mm and 21,5mm. This is a great choice, because Omega also loves irregular lug widths. The same strap goes to my cal 2500 planet ocean and 2504.52.
Phoenix Nato and Blushark Nato come in standard 18mm, 20mm, and 22mm sizes.
Omega Nato is 1,4mm thick.
Phoenix Nato is 1mm thick.
Blushark Nato is 1,4mm thick. The Orca is 2,1mm thick.
Not much of an issue for Luxury product consumers, but here we go.
Omega Nato produces incredible amount of garbage in microplastics and carton to temporarily fill the void in your soul during the unboxing experience. Depending where it is bought from, the Nato comes not only packaged in plastic heavy duty service pouch, but also multiple layers of plastic and carton. Only way to make this more excessive would have been to box it in a tin, before wrapping it into same plastic that they used to seal CDs way back. Each keeper is individually sealed with blue plastic tape, which you can peel off like a total tool. By the way, if you get any gratification from any of this, you need to seriously re-evaluate your life priorities.
Phoenix Nato and Blushark strap come in a plastic pouch wrapped in protective paper. Perhaps they could come in just wrapped the paper?
Omega Nato costs 170€ at the time of writing and goes up probably by 10 euros each year.
Blushark Orca and Original cost 20 USD, but the site runs “Buy-4-get-3-free deal”, which brings down the price.
Phoenix Nato costs about 25€.
This is by far one of the dumbest reviews I have written. Because I’m reviewing a a piece of canvas that costs probably 50 cents to produce, everyone gets a gold medal:
18k Gold-medal: I feel like an idiot admitting this, but Omega Nato is leagues above either of the two. Is it 150 euros better? Probably not.
14k Gold-medal: Blushark strap. Lots of color choices, good sturdy strap that doesn’t start coming apart immediately.
9k Gold-medal: Phoenix Nato, if it cost 10 euros less, it’d be acceptable. It still is the standard Nato strap though.