Although the Omega Planet Ocean collection is only 15 years old, it has become an essential part of the brand's dive watch catalog. Loosely based on the original Seamaster 300 diver from 1957 but thoroughly modern in execution, the Planet Ocean marries old-school tool watch vibes with cutting-edge advances in watchmaking. Offering a varied assortment of models, the Planet Ocean is available in a range of sizes, materials, colors, and complications.
To accompany the already popular Diver 300M collection, The company introduced the model in 2005 as a more robust dive watch with double the water resistance and a beefier style. The watch borrowed some design elements of early 300 models of the 1950s such as the broad-arrow hands, Arabic numerals at 6, 9, and 12, and thicker hour indices accompanied by prominent minute hashes. However, this is not a vintage-inspired watch by any means; the collection proudly asserts its own style with touches like manually-operated helium escape valves, thick cases with sharply beveled surfaces, frequent use of vibrant colors like orange or blue, and most recently, modern watchmaking materials like titanium and ceramic.
In true Omega fashion, the line grew extensively over the decades with different sizes, movements, materials, colors, and complications. However, the easiest way to look at the collection throughout its short but active history is to divide it into three distinct generations, segmented primarily by the calibers used.
When the brand debuted in 2005, the watch was equipped with the Caliber 2500, which is an ETA-based movement and the first to receive the brand's famed Co-Axial escapement. Invented by George Daniels, the Co-Axial escapement causes significantly less friction than the traditional Swiss lever escapement, thereby offering improved accuracy and less required maintenance.
At that time, the company offered two case sizes for this model, 42mm or 45.5mm, and all made in stainless steel with a protruding helium escape valve at 10 o'clock. The aluminum bezel inserts came in standard black or vibrant orange - a shade now closely associated with the lineup. The black dials featured applied hour markers with Super-LumiNova inserts for fantastic legibility underwater, along with the characteristic 12, 6 and 9 Arabic numerals (in white or orange) and a date window at 3 o'clock. The front of the watch was furnished with a domed sapphire crystal, while the back had a solid steel caseback emblazoned with the Seamaster's famous Hippocampus symbol. Bracelet options included a stainless steel bracelet, rubber straps, or leather bands.
The next year, the company launched the Chronograph series, equipped with the Piguet-based (now Blancpain) Caliber 3313 Co-Axial movement offering time, date, and chronograph functionality. These versions sported 45.5mm stainless steel cases and again had either black or orange bezels available, along with the choice of steel bracelets, rubber straps, or leather bands. Over the next years, additions were added like the 18k red gold versions and the Chronograph models.
In 2009, the brand revealed a limited edition stainless steel watch with a ceramic bezel filled with Liquidmetal - Omega's proprietary metallic glass alloy (zirconium, titanium, copper, nickel, and beryllium) that is three times harder than steel. This model, often called a transitional reference, laid the groundwork for the next generation of the Omega Planet Ocean.
In 2011, Omega revamped the Planet Ocean lineup with new sizes, new bezels, new materials, new dial colors, and most importantly, new movements. Instead of relying on ébauche movements, Omega switched to the in-house Caliber 8520 Co-Axial for the ladies’ editions, Caliber 8500 Co-Axial for the men's time/date models and the in-house Caliber 9300 Co-Axial for the chronograph versions.
Case size options for this generation of the Planet Ocean included 37.5mm, 42mm, and 45.5mm, while the PO chronograph retained its 45.5mm diameter. The then-new references all benefited from the ceramic and Liquidmetal bezels and the casebacks were now sapphire crystal for a view of the new in-house movements inside. Omega also added an assortment of material choices over the five-year production run of this generation of the Planet Ocean including stainless steel, red gold, titanium, and platinum.
Omega released the Planet Ocean GMT in 2013, which featured a new case size for the collection (43.5mm) and the dive bezel was replaced by a 24-hour ceramic bezel. Powering the Planet Ocean GMT was the in-house Caliber 8605 Co-Axial movement. Omega also unveiled a special edition Planet Ocean GMT GoodPlanet to highlight the brand's work with theGoodPlanet Foundation.
Despite its relatively young age, the Omega Planet Ocean collection is now in its third iteration. In 2016, Omega announced a brand new generation, equipped with the company's new in-house METAS-certified master movements: Caliber 8800 (ladies'), Caliber 8900 (men's), Caliber 8906 (GMT), and Caliber 9900 (chronograph).
In addition to the new movements, the latest PO lineup also reorganized its sizing. The ladies’ Planet Ocean has a 39.5mm case, the men's Planet Ocean has a 43.5mm case, the Planet Ocean GMT has a 43.5mm case, and the Planet Ocean Chronograph has a 45.5mm case. Along with stainless steel, titanium, and gold, there are also now two-tone and full ceramic Omega Planet Ocean models.
The black ceramic Planet Oceans are dubbed "Deep Black" while the blue ceramic Planet Ocean is called "Deep Blue." This generation of the Planet Ocean retains the ceramic bezel but adds some new colorways like a black and white one for the GMT model and an orange one for the time/date and chronograph editions. Moreover, Omega has also furnished the latest PO references with ceramic dials.
The price range of the newest generation of the METAS-certified Planet Ocean models starts at around $6,200 for the steel time/date models, around $7,800 for the titanium versions, $10,200 for the ceramic editions, and $22,500 for the gold references. However, the secondary market typically offers discounts off the retail price of the current-production models and even more saving when shopping for pre-owned versions of discontinued Planet Ocean references.
Below is a sampling of some of the retail prices (MSRP) of the newest versions of the Planet Ocean watches.
|Model||Reference||Case Size & Materials||Retail Price (MSRP)|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer||22.214.171.124.01.001||39.5mm; Stainless Steel||$6,550|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer||126.96.36.199.13.001||39.5mm; Red Gold||$23,300|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer||188.8.131.52.03.001||43.5mm; Red Gold||$26,900|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer Chronograph||184.108.40.206.03.001||45.5mm; Steel + Gold||$17,400|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer Chronograph||220.127.116.11.99.001||45.5mm; Titanium||$10,700|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer Chronograph||18.104.22.168.01.001||45.5mm; Gold||$31,600|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer GMT||22.214.171.124.01.001||43.5mm; Stainless Steel||$8,000|
|Planet Ocean 600M Master Chronometer GMT "Deep Black"||126.96.36.199.01.001||45.5mm; Black Ceramic||$11,700|
Given that Omega introduced the Planet Ocean after the Diver 300M, it's natural to wonder what the differences are between these two Seamaster dive watches. Generally speaking, the Diver 300M leans more towards a dressier luxury sports watch aesthetic, complete with scalloped bezels, skeletonized hands, decorative five-link bracelets, and highly-stylized dials often decorated with wave patterns. On the other hand, the Omega Planet Ocean emphasizes its tool watch design with knurled bezels, simpler lines, three-link bracelets, and thicker case profiles.
In terms of performance, while both the Seamaster Diver and the Planet Ocean are equipped with helium escape valves for use during saturation diving, the former is rated to 300 meters while the latter can plunge down to 600 meters. Not only do both collections offer ladies' and men's versions, plus both models also include time/date models, GMT editions, and chronograph versions too.
How does Omega's Planet Ocean stack up versus Rolex's Submariner and Sea-Dweller models? Here's a quick comparison between the newest versions of all three professional dive watches: the stainless steel Omega Planet Ocean ref. 188.8.131.52.01.001 (introduced 2016), Rolex Submariner Date ref. 116610LN (introduced 2010) and the Rolex Sea-Dweller ref. 126600 (introduced 2017).
|Model / Reference||Case Size & Materials||Movement & Functions||HEV||Retail Price (MSRP)|
|Omega Planet Ocean ref. 184.108.40.206.01.001||43.5mm; Stainless Steel||Time/Date; Automatic Winding; 60hr Power Reserve; 600m Water Resistance||Yes||$6,550|
|Rolex Submariner Date ref. 126610LN||40mm; Stainless Steel||Time/Date; Automatic Winding; 48hr Power Reserve; 300m Water Resistance||No||$10,100|
|Rolex Sea-Dweller ref. 126600||43mm; Stainless Steel||Time/Date; Automatic Winding; 70hr Power Reserve; 1,220m Water Resistance||Yes||$12,950|
In the 2006 James Bond movie, Casino Royale, Daniel Craig wears a Planet Ocean ref. 2900.50.91 with a 45.5mm case, black bezel, and black rubber strap. Additionally, Omega also released the limited-edition (5,007 pieces) Planet Ocean "Casino Royale" ref. 2907.50.91, complete with an orange "007" logo on the seconds hand and a "Casino Royale" engraving on the caseback.
For the next movie, Quantum of Solace (2008), Bond switches to the Planet Ocean ref. 2201.50.00 with a 42mm case, steel bracelet, and a black bezel. In honor of this film release, Omega introduced the limited-edition Seamaster Planet Ocean "Quantum of Solace" ref. 220.127.116.11.01.001 with a branded dial, crystal, and caseback.
In Skyfall (2012), James Bond wore a second-generation Planet Ocean powered by Caliber 8500, the ref. 18.104.22.168.01.001 with a 42mm case and a black ceramic bezel. That same year, Omega presented the limited edition Seamaster Planet Ocean "Skyfall" ref. 22.214.171.124.01.004 for the public with a 42mm stainless steel case housing a black checkered dial furnished with a 007 logo at 7 o'clock and a black varnished "SKYFALL 007" engraving on the movement's rotor.
Omega has partnered with the Olympic Games since 1932 and frequently releases special edition Olympic watches, including Planet Ocean models.
For the 2014 Sochi Olympics, Omega released two commemorative Planet Ocean watches. The first was the ladies' Planet Ocean "Sochi 2014" ref. 5126.96.36.199.04.001 with a 37.5mm steel case, white dial, white ceramic bezel, and white leather strap. The other was the men’s Planet Ocean "Sochi 2014" ref. 5188.8.131.52.01.001 with a 45.5mm steel case, black dial, black ceramic bezel, and steel bracelet.
In honor of the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, Omega introduced the limited-edition Planet Ocean "Pyeongchang 2018" ref. 5184.108.40.206.03.001 using the colors of the South Korean flag as inspiration. The 43.5mm steel case, which houses a blue ceramic dial, is topped with a red and blue ceramic bezel and fitted with a blue and red rubber strap.
In anticipation of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Omega has already released the ladies' Planet Ocean "Tokyo 2020" ref. 5220.127.116.11.04.001 limited-edition model, sporting a 39.5mm stainless steel case fitted with a white ceramic dial and matching bezel, with touches of red to represent the colors of Japan's flag.
Michael Phelps, the most decorated Olympian of all time with a total of 28 medals, became an official Omega ambassador in 2004. In 2017, Omega unveiled the Seamaster Planet Ocean Chronograph "Michael Phelps" ref. 18.104.22.168.04.001 in the swimmer’s honor, limited to 280 pieces in reference to his 28 medals. The colorful chronograph features a 45.5mm steel case, a blue ceramic bezel with orange rubber accents, and a white ceramic dial blue blued applied indexes.
As official brand ambassadors of Omega, George Clooney, Nicole Kidmans, Michael Phelps, Daniel Craig, and Eddie Redmayne are often spotted with a Planet Ocean on their wrists.
However, aside from the official ambassadors, many other celebrities also favor the Omega Planet Ocean as their go-to luxury diver. Tom Hanks, for example, alternates between his Speedmaster and Seamaster Planet Ocean. Tom Hardy has also been spotted with a Planet Ocean on his wrist, as has country singer Keith Urban. Jeremy Clarkson wore his PO on many episodes of Top Gear, Adam Savage wore his on numerous episodes of MythBusters, and Michael Weatherly donned an orange-bezel Omega Planet Ocean wjile playing Anthony DiNozzo on the popular series, NCIS.
In 2005, the Seamaster Plant Ocean was introduced as a variation to the brands classic Seamaster collection. Keeping in line with the original, the Planet Ocean offers dive watch features that can be beneficial to both amateur and professional divers. The helium escape valve (HEV) on this model sets it apart from some of the other watches offered. This function allows divers to explore a great depths. To browse additional models visit our used Omega watches page.