The calendar is the most popular watch complication by far, and in WatchTime’s December 2010 issue, we reviewed a number of watches with various types of calendars. One of them was the Omega De Ville Hour Vision Annual Calendar, which needs resetting just once per year. For our analysis and results, along with original photos by Nik Schölzel, click here.
On most calendar watches, the date display advances to “31” regardless of how many days are in the month. This means that at the ends of months having fewer than 31 days (five times a year), you must advance the date display manually to have the “1” displayed on the right day. An annual calendar reduces the number of annual adjustments to one. It advances correctly for every month having 30 or 31 days; the only month it can’t master is February, which, of course, has either 28 or 29 days. The annual calendar gets its name from its ability to run for an entire year without correction.
The Omega Hour Vision Annual Calendar has a very simple calendar display, consisting only of an oblong window. This contributes to the watch’s sporty-elegant character. The Omega is the only calendar watch of those we reviewed that does not have any subdials. Omega wanted to limit the number of displays on the dial, so it decided that in addition to the date it would show only the month, which you need to see in order to set the calendar.
Happily, the date and month advance instantly and simultaneously. Our test piece accomplished this feat at two minutes past midnight, much quicker than all the other watches. Plus, the date and month can be quickly adjusted in the first extended crown position: you turn the crown clockwise to change the date and counterclockwise to change the month. It is very easy to set, given that annual calendars are more complicated than standard calendars. The crown-setting system also means the watch has no need for the obtrusive corrector pushers found on some other calendar watches. This is a plus for aesthetic reasons and also because it makes for greater water-resistance: 100 meters, the highest level of any of the watches we reviewed. However, the crown moves stiffly during manual winding. The watch has a hack mechanism that permits precise setting of the time.