There is seemingly no end to the variety of Speedmasters Omega can come up with - but to paraphrase George Orwell "All Speedmasters are equal, but some Speedmasters are more equal than others".
Enter the fan favorite model known to collectors as the Tintin.
Introduced at Baselworld in 2013 as the result of a licensing deal gone awry with the family of Hergé - creator of the Tintin series of illustrated adventures - the Speedmaster, formally only known by its internal Reference number (322.214.171.124.01.004) features an exotic outer track finished in the red & white checkered color scheme of Professor Calculus' rocketship in the classic comic Objectif Lune (Destination Moon in English language editions).
Initially met with somewhat tepid response by collectors and journalists, the model was only produced for about two years before being pulled from the collection. In recent years, the Tintin has more recently been reevaluated by the watch community and has become a true contemporary classic and prices have been steadily climbing, not unlike 'Japan Racing Dials', 'Silver Snoopys', and a bevy of limited edition Omega Speedmaster models. While Tintin models are not really considered to be Limited Edition, they were produced in relatively low quantities and have a truly passionate fan base behind them!
This particular example is in outstanding condition throughout showing only light wear from use. It also comes complete with its set of inner and outer boxes, books, hangtag and warranty cards.
So whether your destination is the moon or simply the coffee shop down the block, this is one Speedmaster you won't want to leave behind!
The Speedmaster Story
After touching the lander down on the lunar surface, Buzz Aldrin transmitted to Houston control these words, nary more than a whisper, the first communication between human beings not concurrently on the same planet.
When Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon for the first time, his Omega Speedmaster was in the module serving as a backup for its electric timer that had malfunctioned. It was Aldrin who, following Armstrong to become the second human to walk on the moon, introduced the Speedmaster to the lunar surface.
Today, Omega has become synonymous with the Apollo missions, the moon landing and space exploration in general. The provenance of the brand, driven by the incredible reliability and functionality of the watches that they produced throughout the space era is second to none. But at the heart of the moon missions, at the core of their objective, was the intrinsic human desire to explore, to crest the horizon and, undaunted, step forth into the unknown.
NASA approved the Speedmaster for its space missions because it was the best, most accurate timepiece they could find, and testing revealed that it needed no modification in order to remain functional under the duress of space flight. NASA was concerned with accuracy, durability and usability; they didn't care about Omega's history, they needed a tool that could accompany humans on a mission to the moon and help them get back safely. They exposed the Speedmaster to high and low temperatures, blasted it with vibrations, challenged it with g-force extremes and submitted it to high and low pressure. Through it all, the Speedmaster ticked on, proving that it could go where no watch had ever gone before.
Today the Omega Speedmaster is often regarded by collectors and enthusiasts to be the single most important wristwatch ever made, if for no other reason than that it accompanied us on mankind’s greatest feat – touching down on and exploring a heavenly body.
While most of the Omega Speedmasters in circulation haven’t left Earth’s atmosphere, we can all take a certain amount of pride in knowing that they could – and would continue to perform just as they would down here on the ground. When you stop and think about all that entails, that’s really saying something.