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 with 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. 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 is 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 not been afraid to embrace technological innovations. In addition to stainless steel, you will now find materials like titanium, platinum, ceramic, and Omega's own alloy Sedna gold (a mixture of gold, copper, and palladium).
Over the years, the manufacturer has also brought their movements up to modern technological 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 these 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.
5 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, or platinum
- Limited editions, such as the Spectre and the 1957 Trilogy
Prices at a Glance: Seamaster 300
|Reference number||Price (approx.)||Material, caliber|
|188.8.131.52.03.002||50,500 USD||Platinum, 8401|
|184.108.40.206.99.002||34,000 USD||Yellow gold, 8913|
|220.127.116.11.01.001||27,500 USD||Sedna gold, 8401|
|CK2913||21,500 USD||Stainless steel, 501|
|18.104.22.168.01.001||16,000 USD||Yellow gold, 8401|
|14755-1||12,000 USD||Stainless steel, 552|
|22.214.171.124.01.001 Spectre||10,500 USD||Stainless steel, 8400|
|126.96.36.199.01.002||10,500 USD||Two-tone (stainless steel, yellow gold), 8400|
|165.014||10,000 USD||Stainless steel, 552|
|188.8.131.52.01.001 Trilogy||7,200 USD||Stainless steel, 8806|
|184.108.40.206.03.001||6,500 USD||Titanium, 8400|
|220.127.116.11.01.002||5,100 USD||Stainless steel, 8400|
How much does a Seamaster 300 cost?
The main difference between the different versions of the Omega Seamaster 300 is the use of materials. Current models come with the option of a stainless steel, gold, titanium, or platinum case. The bands come in the same choices, as well as in leather.
Due to the different materials, prices for a 300 vary greatly. The most affordable option is the 41-mm stainless steel edition with a black dial, black ceramic bezel, and the Co-Axial Master Chronometer caliber 8400. You can purchase a new model on a leather strap or stainless steel bracelet for around 5,100 USD. Pre-owned watches cost about 700 to 900 USD less.
Omega offers a technologically identical model in titanium. You can recognize this version by its dark blue dial and bezel insert. A mint-condition titanium watch on a brown leather strap will set you back roughly 6,500 USD. The same timepiece on a titanium bracelet demands around 7,000 USD. Used watches sell for between 5,600 and 6,000 USD on Chrono24.
The Seamaster 300 is also available in several two-tone editions. You can choose from watches in stainless steel and yellow gold, as well as models in titanium and Sedna gold – Omega's rose gold alloy. The former combination changes hands for between 7,000 and 10,500 USD depending on its condition and whether it comes on a leather or metal band. Prices for similar watches in titanium and Sedna gold range from 6,600 to 9,600 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 but for its rose gold balance bridge and rotor. You can call a never-worn Seamaster 300 in yellow gold your own for roughly 16,000 USD on a leather strap. That price climbs to nearly 28,000 USD for the same watch on an 18-karat gold bracelet. Sedna gold models occupy a similar price range and demand 16,000 USD on a leather strap and 27,500 USD on a gold bracelet.
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. These watches require an investment of around 34,000 USD new. Pre-owned pieces remain difficult to find.
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 40,500 USD. The version with a lapis lazuli dial changes hands for approximately 46,000 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. There are 757 copies of the version on a leather strap, which costs around 33,000 USD. The variant on a platinum bracelet is even rarer, with a limited run of only 357 pieces. This exclusive watch will set you back about 50,500 USD.
Watches of Fans of James Bond and Retro Timepieces
If you want to know what it feels like to be secret agent James Bond, it's worth taking a look at the special "Spectre" edition from 2015. Technically speaking, this is a normal Seamaster 300 in stainless steel. However, the Spectre had a limited run of only 7,007 pieces. It features a lollipop second hand, "007" engraved on the clasp, and the same gray and black NATO strap worn by Daniel Craig's 007 in the eponymous movie. Never-worn models sell for approximately 10,500 USD, while used watches demand several hundred dollars less.
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 sister models, the 1957 Trilogy takes its 39-mm diameter, lack of an arrow tip on its 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 7,200 USD new and 6,300 USD pre-owned.
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 15,500 and 29,000 USD.
Watches from subsequent series are generally more affordable. For example, a well-maintained Seamaster ref. 14755 demands about 12,000 USD. You can save even more by purchasing a ref. 165.014 from the mid-1960s instead. Prices for this watch sit around 10,000 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 a 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.