While the bulk of our taste in watches is rooted in sports models, our watch love is not completely exclusive. Some brands are simply too powerful, their products just too cool to resist. Nomos Glashutte is just such a brand. Glashutte is an East German town located above the Czech Republic boarder and is home to the Nomos manfactory. Nomos is a fairly young brand with their roots beginning just months after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990. Thanks largely to expanding globalization and the widespread reach of the internet, forming a new watch brand is not nearly as difficult today as it was in early nineties Eastern Germany. Still, Nomos has built an entire brand based on their heritage and engineering knowledge .
By 1997, Nomos had moved out of the small apartment that once served as an office and now even had their own telephone line. Nomos was on a steady pace to become a true manufactory, a rare designation meaning they design their own watch movements and produce a significant portion of the caliber in-house. By 2001 Nomos had their own date complication and in 2003 they incorporated a power reserve mechanism into their movement designs. Nomos Glashutte officially became a manufactory in 2005 as they designed and produced the movement used in their Tangomat model.
Nomos did not slow down after this achievement, moving on to their own tourbillon complication in 2007. The current line up from Nomos is exceptionally focused and beautifully engineered. From a technological perspective they offer a total of seven movements with complications including date, power reserve, automatic winding, GMT, and one of the coolest world time calibers in existence (the XI movement as seen in the Zurich Weltzeit). In addition to their technical abilities, Nomos uses a distinct and unified Deutscher Werkbund (German Work Federation) style in all of their designs. Often simplified as Bauhaus styling, the Nomos aesthetic is one born of an association of design oriented professionals which seeks to implement designs that are timeless and outside of trends and the cycles of fashion. The final result is a “Bauhaus” styling that can be seen in all of Nomos’ designs and makes their watches some of the most aesthetically versatile watches on the market today.
Consider the Tangomat Datum (right), this beautifully minimalist design is one of the very few that we can name that would not look out of place paired with shorts and sandals or a with a suit. Measuring an ideal 38.3 mm across, the stainless steel case houses the Zeta movement allowing for automatic winding, sub seconds and a nicely understated date window in place of the six o’clock marker. The Zeta movement can be seen through the sapphire case back and, thanks to the Zeta’s low profile design, the Tangomat Datum is only 8 mm thick. The Tangomat Datum can be had for $3270 USD but if you’re willing to forgo automatic winding the almost identical looking Tangente Datum, which measures 37.5 x 6.75 mm, retails for just $2360.
Nomos has a wide range of models but they all carry the signature Nomos styling and are powered by in-house movements. With options starting as low as $1290 for the 36 mm “Club” model, there likely isn’t a better value in an in-house caliber on the market. We think Nomos has created a great looking line of watches that will likely feel modern and stylish for many years and they have managed to do so at a very attractive price point.