Nomos Tetra Neomatik Nachtblau Review
Nomos, known for their classically refined watches, may appear a little predictable for some. I got my hands on their ultimate wild card piece, the square Tetra Neomatik Nachtblau, for a few weeks courtesy of the brand themselves, and it’s anything but predictable.
When Nomos agreed to lending me some watches for review I submitted a few requests, namely something with the new swing system and preferably one of the Nachtblau (midnight blue) line, and boy did they deliver. This incarnation of the Tetra comes the largest size case – 33mm, which may alarm some as being too small, but this is deceiving. The measurement refers to the length from one side to another, so whilst that may sound small, the length from one corner to it’s opposite is in fact 46mm (think measuring a TV). In my experience this piece wears like a 38mm watch, so a good size for the masses.
The dial is absolutely sublime, evoking the colour of a clear night sky in a way I did not know possible, and in certain lights it appears almost slate grey, adding further to the depth. However, it’s the detailing laid on top of this canvas that makes it the masterpiece it is. Like many others in the Nomos line up, you’ll find Bauhaus style numerals for the even numbers and batons for the odd number, all of which are printed in a frosted silver, subtly hinting at stars in the night sky. ‘Nomos Glashütte’ appears at 12o’clock, again in the frosted silver, and ‘neomatik’ lies just below this in gold.
At the bottom of the dial ‘Made in Germany’ is also printed in silver. The minute track around the edge is brought to life with the inclusion of pastel blue numbers at every hour to mark 5 minutes intervals, bar 6o’clock where you’ll find a neon orange dot, tying in with the same coloured sub seconds hand found just above. Finally, the hour and minute hands are rhodium plated, fading into the dial in some lights, whilst gleaming brightly in others.
Turning the square case over reveals a more traditional circular display window. On show here is Nomos’ flagship movement; the automatic DUW 3001 movement with their famed ‘Swing Sytsem’, making this a true in-house mechanism. Not only does this pack a punch mechanically, especially considering it comes in at a mere 3.2mm thick, but it also delivers the finishing we’ve come to expect on all other Nomos movements. With gold engraving for key information, it features a Glashütte three quarter plate, rhodium plated surfaces with Glashütte ribbing and tempered blue screws to name just a few of the highlights.
Beyond the face and internal workings, the Tetra Neomatik Nachtblau comes with sapphire crystal on both the front and back of the case, though it is worth noting that because the front piece is square like the case, it will be slightly more susceptible to breaking if knocked with force. The lugs tend to shy away from the Bauhaus styling and instead derive more from the Art Deco movement. Each lug appears to be split in two to form a sort of step, and this detail, however small, is one of my favourite design aspects of this watch.
The lugs also happen to be drilled which, whilst not very common on dressier watches, is something Nomos do more or less across the board, and is a welcome addition. A Horween Shell Cordovan strap is supplied as standard with the Nomos wing clasp. Although this particular strap was too large for me to wear, I do own a smaller version of this strap. In my opinion it’s the perfect strap for almost all Nomos watches, so is quite at home here. However, because this is such an unusual watch, it works on just about any style strap, but I particularly like it on perlon.
Funnily enough, the first Nomos watch I ever saw in person was a Tetra, though not this particular version. I recall being absolutely bowled over by it’s sheer beauty, but having been wearing this one for a few weeks now, I’m surprised to say it’s not something that I’ve fallen in love with. This however might be down to it’s somewhat inflated size compared to my 33mm Nomos Orion, as beyond that I’ve really struggled to find any fault with it.
All in all, this is a watch that has put a smile on my face whenever I’ve worn it and will undoubtedly turn heads when on display. It’s certainly made me consider adding another Nomos to my collection, I just wish they’d make this configuration in the smaller, 27mm case! I really do think Nomos have nailed the Tetra on the head with the Neomatik Nachtblau; having combined a unique design with a superb movement, and coming in at less than £3K, this should be a watch for all serious collectors to consider.