When it comes to new watch releases, there are a handful of features that always seem to grab my eye. First amongst those is a GMT complication, as it has quickly become my favorite one to have in a watch. Throw in some vintage styling (especially with a white or off-white dial), and you can consider my interest to be fully piqued. Needless to say, when I saw the photos of the Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time, I knew it was a watch I would be writing about.
Most of you are probably familiar with Steinhart, much as I am. While I have not been able to get one in for review, the general consensus across the interwebs seems to be that you are getting a solidly designed (and built) watch at a reasonable price when you pick up something from Steinhart. Yes, you can look at the Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time and see a lot of the influences that it’s drawing from (especially the Rolex ones), but I do not necessarily consider it a bad thing.
If you consider the Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time in the realm of watches coming out of the mid-1950s, when trans-Atlantic flights were starting up, then you can feel the general historical influence they were going with here. Of course, inside the 42mm case is a thoroughly-modern Soprod A10 movement, which of course should be plenty reliable and accurate. And while the movement (and materials) are certainly modern, the look and feel of the watch is definitely from another era.
Now, I will not pretend that a sapphire crystal will feel the same as a plexiglass one does. That said, the sapphire one on the Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time really seems to get that domed feel, with the additional scratch resistance that sapphire brings. This is one of those details that definitely looks good in the photos they provide, but I would reserve final judgment until I saw it in person.
The dial has an older look as well. The Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time goes with a sort of off-white coloration that is brighter in the center, and then darkens at the outer edges, giving the appearance of what you would get on a sun-faded dial. The luminous paint used on the indices and markers also has an antiqued (or vintage) look to it, again giving the appearance of age. The lone standout on the dial is the date window – against the dial, it just seems to be too bright. While I like a date complication, I think here deleting it would better serve the look of the watch.
The bezel inset also tries it’s best to give the look of an older watch. It’s in the somewhat-traditional “Pepsi” color scheme, albeit with muted tones. I think they did as well as they could with that on the Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time, though I do wish they had snuck the luminous paint onto the indices as well. Sure, it would not be quite how they did things back in the ’50s, but it’s something that looks cool in the dark, and the coloration (in the light) would still match the dial.
For those outside of the EU, you can pick up your own Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time for $791 (of course, in the EU, you will have the 19% VAT added) plus shipping. You could possibly argue that Rolex homage watches are a dime a dozen. And, yeah, I guess if you solely focused on the look, I can see your point. When you get into a solidly-built homage like this one (or others), you are getting something that will be a lot more robust, and can actually be serviced down the road. While I had a few quibbles about the design, I think there is a lot to like about the Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time. steinhartwatches.de
- Brand & Model: Steinhart Ocean One Vintage Dual Time
- Price: $791
- Who we think it might be for: You want to pick up an homage to pilot/GMT watches of the 50s and want something that will not fall apart the first time you bump it
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen?: Maybe – I would want to see how the domed crystal and the date wheel look in person
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: Get rid of the date display
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: The vintage design cues