Contact [email protected] for pricing and availability; Either I have it, or I can get it! Rolex vs Omega returns to Versus! Today, we pit the 2014 Rolex Milgauss GV Z-Blue (116400GV) against the 2018 Omega Seamaster Railmaster Denim 22.214.171.124.03.001 as engineer’s watches get a postmodern upgrade courtesy of color and inspired design. Although launched in the 1950s as timepieces for technicians, engineers, and railroad workers, today’s luxury-driven Omega Railmaster and Rolex Milgauss are calculated to elicit smiles without losing an of their ancestral toughness.
The Rolex Milgauss 116400 launched in 2007 as a reborn take on the Milgauss family discontinued after the 1987 reference 1019. The new Milgauss arrived with a signature green-sapphire crystal variant known as the “GV” and a range of orange dial accents that would have bewildered period customers of the original Milgauss. A 40mm 904L stainless steel case with a fixed bezel give the Milgauss a larger footprint than the originals while maintaining clear relation to established Rolex standard bearers like the Datejust and Day Date. A full stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet keeps the new 116400 anchored, and Rolex Easylink permits – er – easy – adjustment of the Oyster bracelet to suit small fluctuations in wrist size.
Rolex’s “glace vert” green crystal returns on the Milgauss Z Blue, but the dial accents of orange sit atop a supercharged iridescent blue metallic dial dubbed “Z-Blue” by Rolex. This dial is alien, uncharacteristic, and even somewhat iconoclastic by the standards of stolid Rolex; it resets expectations regarding what a Rolex Oyster Perpetual model can and cannot be. Standard white gold applique indices and hands are retained from the standard Rolex 116400.
Beneath the blinding shimmer of the Z Blue dial, Rolex places a manufacture caliber 3131 automatic. It boasts COSC and “Superlative Chronometer” (Rolex’s term) certification. 48-hours of power reserve is neither generous nor miserly, but this movement makes its money with shock resistance and anti-magnetic hardening; a LIGA-etched nickel phosphorous escapement, antimagnetic niobium-zirconium oxidized hairspring (Parachrom Blue), and an encompassing soft iron paramagnetic shield protect the Milguass from the effect of high-powered electronics and static magnets. The Rolex Oyster case afford the GV Z-Blue 100-meter water resistance.
Omega relaunched the Seamaster Railmaster at Baselworld 2017. The first Railmaster CK2914 bowed in 1957, so the new watch marked the 60th anniversary of the original Omega conductor’s watch. Today’s Omega Seamaster Railmaster Denim 126.96.36.199.03.001 is a mid-year 2018 launch designed to capitalize on the popularity of the accessibly priced and vintage-inspired Railmaster.
The Railmaster Denim shares its 40mm stainless steel case and bracelet with the standard watch. All variants of the standard Seamaster Railmaster (the limited 2017 “Trilogy” model was distinct) share a full satin steel finish on all surfaces, and the budget-friendly Omega incorporates a solid caseback with the traditional Seamaster “hippocampus” or seahorse logo.
The interior of the case encloses a new generation of Omega co-axial Master Chronometer, the Omega caliber 8806. The 8806 is automatic, operates for 55 hours from a full wind, and meets both COSC and METAS (Master Chronometer/full-watch) performance standards. An Omega Si14 silicon hairspring allows the neo-Railmaster to boast virtual immunity to magnetic fields of all magnitudes. 150-meter water resistance honors the Railmaster’s status as a member of the Omega Seamaster collection.
Omega enhances its standard Seamaster Railmaster vertical satin dial with a striking “denim” blue color. Like actual denim, the Omega dial incorporates striking variations in color, texture, and range of brightness. Elements such as the crosshair center dial, quarter Arabic numerals, and generous applications of Superluminova are retained from the standard Omega Railmaster.
It’s Rolex versus Omega, round 2, on Versus!