Like Cher, Bono, or Rihanna, when a watch goes by a single name, you know it’s an icon. Case in point is the Speedmaster. First launched as a watch for race car drivers in 1957, and later linked to mankind’s greatest leap in 1969, few watches come close to the cachet of Omega’s signature chronograph. However, because the Speedmaster is Omega’s most famous watch model, there are so many variations (Speedmaster Reduced, Speedmaster ’57, Mark II, Racing, Rolex Replica Watches etc.) that it can be challenging to understand what the differences are.
Contrary to popular belief, not all Omega Speedmaster watches are “Moonwatches” – those are specific versions that are either direct descents of the Apollo 11 Speedmaster Professional watches or versions that Omega created in honor of the lunar landing. For instance, while at first glance the Omega Speedmaster Reduced may look like a Speedmaster Professional “Moonwatch” it is a different watch Introduced in 1988, the Speedmaster Reduced was sold as the smaller and cheaper version of the Speedy among the various watches in the Omega Speedmaster collection. Consequently, the first thing you’ll notice if you have a Speedmaster Reduced in your hands is its size. Sporting a case that is 39mm in diameter, the aptly named ‘Reduced’ is noticeably smaller than the 42mm size of the Speedmaster Professional watches. It is also more compact than the 41.5mm size of the Co-Axial Speedmaster ’57 model and the 44.25mm size of the Speedmaster Racing edition.
There were a few versions of the Speedmaster Reduced chronograph during its two-decade production run. Omega offered the Speedmaster Reduced in stainless steel, solid yellow gold, and two-tone steel and gold. There were also bracelet versions and leather strap versions, in addition to different dial colors. Omega even made date, perpetual calendar, day-date, and moonphase versions of the Speedy Reduced chronograph.
The most common Speedmaster Reduced models are the no-date stainless steel ones with black dials and black bezels. The first generation included the references ST.175.0032 (leather strap) and ST.375.0032 (steel bracelet). Because Omega changed their coding system in the late 1980s, this version of the Speedmaster Reduced is also known as the ref. 3510.50.00.
In 2006, Omega introduced the upgraded Speedmaster Reduced (ref. 3539.50.00) with a sapphire crystal instead of a Hesalite crystal and a slightly redesign dial. However by 2009, Omega had stopped producing the Speedmaster Reduced collection altogether.