Omega Planet Ocean cal. 2500, 42mm

Overview

Omega Planet Ocean (PO) line was introduced in 2005. The watches come in both 45mm and 42mm size and are famous for being worn by Special Agent James Bond played by Daniel Craig. In Casino Royale, Daniel Craig wore the 45mm planet ocean on rubber strap and in Quantum of Solace the 42mm 2201.50 on steel bracelet.

ManufacturerOmega
Reference2201.50
Movement2500 (ETA 2892-A2)
Diameter42mm
Thickness14,5mm
Lug to lug46mm
Lug width20mm
MaterialStainless Steel
Water Resistance600m
Basic information

The design of the PO draws from the history of the Omega Seamaster. The PO has a two part bezel found in pre-bond Seamasters and some of the earlier Omega references. The source of the bezel design is most likely Omega Seamaster 300 ref CK2913 produced in late 1950s. Another historic design choice is the curved lugs, which omega have been using since the appearance of first ST Speedmasters.

Various References

One thing worth mentioning is that the cal 2500 Planet Ocean has sharper case than the 2531.80 or 2254.50 Seamasters. While the lugs on the 2254.50 are similar, the form is considerably softer than on the Planet Ocean. This creates an impression of quality of the finish and a more modern look. I haven’t handled a modern unpolished Speedmaster myself, but it is said that modern Speedmasters have similar quality to the lugs.

It may be that all of the 2531.80s and 2254.50s that I have handled have been polished, but at this point, it would be extremely bad luck. Until otherwise proves, I’m going to assume that the edges on the older SM300 lyre lugs weren’t as sharp as on the PO lyre lugs.

Because of the many different color combinations, strap options and sizes, the following table attempts to summarise the reference numbers for 42mm Planet Oceans:

ReferenceStrapBezel colorIndex Color
2201.50BraceletBlackWhite
2901.50.91Stiched RubberBlackWhite
2901.50.81RubberBlackWhite
2201.51BraceletBlackOrange
2201.52MeshBlackOrange
2901.51.82Rubber (orange stitches)BlackOrange
2209.50BraceletOrangeOrange
2909.50.91RubberOrangeOrange
2909.50.38LeatherOrangeOrange
42mm Planet Ocean References

The sheer number of available references may make finding the right watch to purchase difficult. However, it is a good idea to extend one’s searches as deals can be had in any of the references. Unfortunately sometimes dodgy sellers downplay the size and offer 45mm references as 42mm and this creates further confusion.

Bracelet vs Strap

As outlined earlier, the PO came in at least four different strap configurations: steel bracelet, steel mesh, stitched rubber and rubber. I have had pleasure to handle the non-sticthed rubber, and it is easily one of the best rubber straps I have had. It is both comfortable, doesn’t have the groce vanilla smell, which connoisseurs of poverty-grade rubber straps claim to be characteristic of nice vulcanised rubber. The strap doesn’t cause itch even when worn extensively.

The bracelet for the cal 2500 Omegas is 1580 / 952. Unfortunately, my watch never came with bracelet, so until I can source one second hand, I’m unable to review it. I know that the bracelet came with both pins and screws. As with 2254.50, a popular modification is to add micro adjustment clasp to the bracelet. More of this including the parts numbers can be found in the 2254.50 article.

ReferenceComment
1580/952Original steel bracelet
1589/858Steel bracelet from cal 8500
98000144Rubber strap
98000364Rubber strap from cal 8500
Available bracelets for cal 2500

The 1589/858 sits slightly too thick on the watch, but many prefer it because of availability and better clasp. The incorrect size of the 858 end link is especially noticeable where lyre lug meets the end-link itself. The rubber strap also 98000364 extends slightly above the lugs, but it is barely noticeable.

In addition to the steel bracelet and the rubber straps, the cal 2500 Planet Ocean wears well on a shark mesh. This is one of my personal favourites because the mesh is light and comfortable.

Hand Winding

The hand-winding experience of the cal 2500c is very nice and smooth. Unlike the 1120 or the Rolex Calibers, you can only hear a very faint sound of turning gears when hand-winding. In many watches, I would associate this winding to the wrong direction. Once wound full, just like the 1120, the movement gives nice pleasurable clicks to tell the winder to do something more productive with their life.

2500c vs 2500d

Anyone who is looking to buy any cal 2500 Omega watch is bound to find a lot of discussion over the differences of the movement. The differences have been discussed extensively. In short, the 2500d comes with three-tier escapement as opposed to the two-tier escapement of the 2500c. It is said online that the advantage of this is that the service interval of the 2500d is longer and the 2500d movement is less subject to failure due to wear or dislocation of the part.

Conclusion

The biggest misconception regarding the Planet Ocean 42mm is that it is a big watch. This is most likely caused by its 45mm cousin, or the newer 43,5mm versions. The 42mm PO wears slightly smaller than the flatter 2254.50 despite being taller. It also wears considerably smaller than Seiko MM300, which feels like a chunk of steel strapped to your wrist. On my 16,5cm wrist, the watch feels perfectly balanced on the rubber strap.

The various PO strap options, the two different movement types and the three different bezels/dials configurations can make the purchase confusing and somewhat difficult. Beyond the various references, the watch has a lot to offer: not many watches are simultaneously conservative (2201.50), playful (2201.51) and slightly obnoxious (2209.51).

Fake Vietnam / Military Watch

There is a well known fake vintage watch that is persistently used to con newbies into thinking they have hit the jackpot. The dead giveaway is the reference Y22668 and the number 10589463. If you find this blog post by googling those numbers, the watch in question is a fake. None of these watches are authentic or contain a single original part.

Fake IWC

Fake IWC
IWC caseback

Fake Omega

Fake Rolex

Conclusion

There is a slim possibility that a legit vintage military watch exists somewhere with Y22668 and 10589463 stamped on the back. However, if Google brings you here with these numbers, the watch is most likely a fake. The brands are at least Patek Philippe, Rolex, IWC, Omega, Tudor and Breitling.

Interestingly there are few variations of the Rolex with seemingly random numbers. It may be that in later evolutions the manufacturer has switched to random numbering so that the watches aren’t easy to find by Google in blog posts such as this

Omega Seamaster Professional 300m 2254.50

Overview

This is a review about the Omega Seamaster 300 2254.50. The watch was sold along the ‘Bond’ Seamaster 2531.80 and its differences to the 2531.80 are sword hands, indices, bracelet, colors and big triangle dial. The “big triangle” on the dial along with the rectangular indices are a throwback to the classic 166.024 and 165.024 Seamasters.

ManufacturerOmega
Reference2254.50
Movement1120
Diameter42mm
Thickness11,7mm
Lug to lug47mm
Lug width20mm
MaterialStainless Steel
Water Resistance300m
Basic information

The distinctive features of the 2254.50 are its thinness, sword hands and speedmaster style bracelet with slight taper to the clasp.

However, to keep Omega references complex, Omega released a few other similar, but different models, such as the 2255.80 electric blue and steel, 2533.50 America’s cup with black dial and steel and the 2054.50 which nearly identical to the 2254.50, but mounted on the 5-link Bond bracelet.

Year ProductionReference NumberAppearance
19932531.80Round indices, skeleton hands, both in tritium and luminova. Black dial, blue bezel, 5-link bracelet.
19972254.50Big triangle, painted rectangular indices, sword hands. Black dial, black bezel, speedmaster bracelet.
19972054.50Big triangle, painted rectangular indices, sword hands. Black dial, black bezel, 5-link bracelet.
2255.80Big triangle, painted rectangular indices, sword hands. Blue dial, steel bezel, speedmaster bracelet.
2533.50Big triangle, applied rectangular indices, sword hands, America’s Cup printed on dial. Black dial, steel bezel, 5-link bracelet.
Table of automatic SMP300 references

Hand-winding Experience

The Omega cal 1120 derived from ETA 2824-2 is a workhorse and can be enjoyed for its utilitarian aspects. It is neither pretty or advanced, but it does the job.

The hand-winding experience of the 2254.50 is close to standard ETA 2824-2. There is really nothing new to anyone who has handled an ETA 2824-2. While the winding experience is relatively far away from the modern luxury watches, the watch gives satisfiable clicks to notify when it has been fully wound.

Nato Strap

The 1610/930 bracelet of the 2254.50, even with its modest taper, may not be for everyone. For a person with a smaller wrist, it can fear bulky and cumbersome. The 2254.50 is a relatively thin watch. Because of its 11mm thickness, it wears perfectly on a nato strap. With a slim 1mm thick nato strap the watch wears only 14mm on a nato strap with a keeper. This is still 0.5mm thinner than a Planet Ocean cal 2500.

Due to the thinness of 2254.50 it is possible to use some of the thicker Nato straps with Keepers, such as Blushark Orca. Even with a 1,5mm thick waffle weave Orca, the 2254.50 is at 14mm of thickness. This is still 1,5mm thinner than a cal 8500 PO.

My preference is to wear it on a Nato strap over the excellent Speedmaster-style bracelet. Luckily, most watches come with the bracelet, so you can decide for yourself.

Modifications

ModPart number
Non-America’s Cup Dial064WZ3121001
Planet Ocean Second Hand066WZ4315
Micro adjustable claspClasp: 117STZ001154 (large)
Clasp: 117STZ004666 (small)
Sadle-link (2x): 0118ST1589
Pins (2x): 0128ST0166
Screws (4x): 0124ST3307
Mods and part numbers

Non-America’s Cup Dial: In this mod, the dial of the 2254.50 is changed to the Non-America’s Cup Dial. In this dial the indices and Omega text are applied vs painted / printed.

Planet Ocean Seconds Hand: In this mod the second hand is changed to PO seconds hand which some think fits better the sword hands. Also the tip of the seconds hand is brighter.

Micro-adjustable clasp: In this mod the normal clasp is changed to the more modern micro-adjustable clasp. This requires changing the last links to ones with screw ends. This gives the wearer three different positions to adjust the watch thorough the day.

Conclusion

The 2254.50 is a great watch. The bezel of the 2254.50 is a letdown, but the size, lume and dial make up for its downfalls. The watch is simply great and works well with bracelet and even better on a Nato strap.