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When we’re talking about Nomos Glashutte, we have to state its role as one of the most prominent and glaring examples of the “Bauhaus” that the world has ever seen.
Founded by Roland Schwertner in the year 1990 right after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the brand in itself was a revolutionary invention that was brought in a world that was already facing a tremendous loss of artistic identity.
A faithful follower of the accents of the Bauhaus school of art, established by Walter Gropius in Weimar, Nomos has opened up an eclectic range of the stunning watches that are known for their clean, minimalist designs and spectacular In-House movement.
And this perfect essence of Bauhaus minimalism is witnessed is spirit and design in none other than the ruling Tangente collection from the brand.
The watches in the Tangente collection possess a simply enchanting straight-edged layout, making for a severe, dignified yet modest appeal that goes beautifully with any sort of dresses.
And today, on the 100th year of Bauhaus, we will be decoding and reviewing a brilliant model from the Tangente so that you know what the Nomos Tangente is all about!
NOMOS Glashütte Tangente Datum Review
About the Collection
As have been mentioned earlier, the Tangente range of watches from the brand has been the showstopper and face of the company established by Roland Schwertner. That moment in history which saw the creation of the Nomos Glashutte is infamous for the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the fall of the Communist reign in Germany.
This wall that separated Berlin from 1961 to 1989, not stood for the physical division between the territories but to a great extent, an ideological one as well.
Amidst the chaotic state of affairs, Nomos, that was brought into existence two days after the fall, was selected as one of the most fertile projects by the prestigious German watch-making company Glashutte. This was literally the hub of German watch-manufacturing that at this time that capitalized on the present scenario that opened up an incredibly diverse range of designs, to accentuate a purely traditional concept.
The original Bauhaus-inspired for the brand was developed by Susanne Gunther who wanted to bring the true spirit of the Bauhaus purist style. This resulted in the marvelous, authentic Bauhaus designs that were developed during the course of 27 years to bring you some of the most magnificent designs in its Tangente collection.
Signature Features of the Tangente
The Nomos designs are essentially recognized by the utmost simplicity of form that emphasizes and celebrates the functionality of the overall structure of the structure instead of stressing on mere adornments. And this was principally what the Bauhaus stood for with its principle of “form follows function” and not the other way round.
The Nomos Tangente designs are foregrounded by a “free-play” of the modern minimalist constituent elements which makes it an astonishingly beautiful blend of the traditional and modern.
With the launch of the Tangente, the brand shot up in fame, becoming globally recognized for its iconic minimalist layout and sleek form and structure.
Some notable features from the collection include:
- A stainless steel “tripartite” or three-case design that measures a standard 35 mm in diameter along with a 6.2 mm thickness. These dimensions make the standard Tangente just the ideal dial shape for every kind of wrist and for either gender.
- The silver-plated, galvanized dial of the watches is strategically set into a dazzling sapphire crystal casing making for a highly durable, scratch-proof exterior.
- The watches have brilliant temperature-treated blue hands that sparkle a brilliant shade of the color when they catch the light at certain angles.
- Authentic Cordovan leather(that is one of the most durable leathers) straps set with drill lugs ensure an all-round security with maximum durability and style.
- In-house movements make for a very sophisticated mechanism for all the manual winds for Tangente. The neomatik movements for the automatic winds provide an incredibly accurate calibration.
The Datum 38 mm from the Tangente Collection of NOMOS is recognized as one of the iconic models from the brand. Molded in the classic Bauhaus design, this Tangente ref 130 model is simply a classic in every sense of the word itself.
And if you didn’t know this already the Tangente Datum is a recipient of the Good Times Award in the year 2012, which sets it by a league apart from the, most of the contemporary designs that we often come across today.
In the next few paragraphs, an extensive review of all the elements that come together to make this an award-winning German timepiece follows!
The Datum has a dial that measures 38 mm with a thickness of 8 mm. Further, the lug-to-lug measurement of the watch stands at 46 mm along with a lug-width of 19 mm. These dimensions on the watch make it an ideal fit for all types of wrist sizes. It wears a substantial proportion even on medium to larger wrist sizes.
The clean facade and straight-edged overall design go on beautifully for both men and women. And this is also one of the primary things that we like about this watch, as conforming to superior, traditional principles of watch-making, this model ideal compliments the fashion statement of either gender.
The lugs have a very angular, sharp look to them that defines the suave feel of the watch, accentuating a simple, straightforward look with a very contemporary edge to it.
The 38 mm dial of the Tangente Datum is of a pearlescent white color that looks absolutely charming and elegant. The dial consists of a circular “grained” sub-dial that registers the sub-seconds. This is again, one of the signature features of most of the Nomos watches. It looks classically beautiful with this dated kind of “waist-coat timepiece” design.
Below this sub-dial, the watch features a large and tapered date-window set exactly at 6 o’clock that obviously displays the date numerically. The edges of this date-window are beveled, adding depth to the overall dial-design.
The printed black hours numerals, in our opinion, could be said to mark a middle ground between Art Deco and the Bauhaus in style, bringing the best of both worlds together! The long hour indices and the short minute indices are crisply marked, reflecting this glamorous combination of two very popular yet absolutely antithetical designs.
One of the things that we did notice over here is that the slim, almost bezel-less look of the dial face emphasizes the clean and edgy look of the watch, even more, making it look more prominent and larger in dimension than it actually is.
This makes it a beautiful choice for all kinds of apparels and occasions; be it formal or casual.
The reason we didn’t mention anything about the watch-hands in the earlier slot where we discussed the dial face of the watch was because we thought that it’s only fair to give them a separate section for the purpose.
One of the patented features of all Nomos watches is the brand’s signature temperature-treated blue hands. This is a very elaborate and high-expensive procedure that you could only get in exclusive models of high-end brands.
This involves the metal being heated to a particular temperature and then set aside at another temperature to get a pure blue shade without any color-inconsistency. And, the real beauty of these hands could be witnessed when they catch the light at certain angles dazzling a shocking blue which otherwise remains subtle and provides a depth to the watch-design.
Lesser known brands or inexpensive models may use fake blue hands that don’t really live up to the mark that real ones achieve.
The In-house movement
The Nomos Tangent line is famous for some of its spectacularly fluid, manual-winding, In-House movements. The current range for Nomos offers seven different calibers with Tangente Datum using the Beta.
The Beta, similar to the manually-wound Alpha caliber, further adds an extra “date-complication” which is built around the perimeter of the movement instead of the usual “on the top.” What this does is allow the overall profile of the manual-wind movement to remain in a compact, slim form, while offering the benefit of a large and legible date ring at the same time.
The Datum uses a beautiful Beta DUW4101 In-House Swing movement that could be seen through the beautiful sapphire crystal case back of the watch. And how do you tell it’s a manual-wind? Simple. No rotors at the back!
The watch provides a power-reserve of 42 hours, which is a decent amount, lasting for about two days. It is a 23 jewels movement which is brilliant and explains the quality and price-tag.
All in all, the movement is almost as pitch-perfect to any that you could expect from high-end brands such as Rolex and the likes of it, coming at a third of the price.
Cordovan leather straps
Genuine Horween Cordovan hand-stitched leather is one of the most durable leathers in the world and Nomos seems to have left no stone unturned in ensuring only the highest quality of materials for its watches. The classic Cordovan leathers of the watch imprinted with the icons “Nomos Glashutte” ensure all the safety, security and durability against regular wear, smoothly stretching out in a polished stainless steel buckle design.
A benefit of the strap design provided by the watch is that the drill-lugs allow for easy changing or replacements of the straps.
Durability and wearability
With materials like a sapphire crystal casing and Cordovan leather straps, you might be certain of the incredible durability of the watch by now. The watch is absolutely scratch-proof and chip-resistant. It serves pretty well for regular wear as a beautiful dress watch.
It compliments every kind of attire and makes for a marvelous chronometer for all kinds of occasions.
The price tag of this watch is, no doubt is on the higher end of the digits. You could have it around at around $2200-$2800 and probably a for a tad bit lesser for smaller models.
However, the price could be said to be justified owing to the absolute best in production and quality of materials. Nomos never has and will never engage the third party dealers for its sales, prioritizing its relationship with customers over everything else.
This explains the top-notch quality of all its products that reflects a bond of trust between the brand and its customers, as strong as every inch of its watches itself. And this is the main reason why these watches sell at a higher price.
What could have been better?
Although the Tangente Datum is almost the perfect watch in all due respect, the only gripe we had with this one is the level of water-resistance it provides. The watch provides a mere 3 ATM on water-resistance that is pretty low. This makes sorely unsuitable for showering or swimming purposes, or even for wear during heavy rains.
However, it will survive light spells and a few splashes here and there for that matter. And keeping every other fascinating feature that this watch offers in mind, we could hardly complain of not being able to jump into the pool with it.
The Nomos Glashutte, to this day, remains to be a prestigious member of the Deutscher Werkbund, one of the German predecessors of the Bauhaus movement. It stresses on the importance and role of the functional and minimalist Bauhaus layout with relation to industrial production.
On the 100th year anniversary of the Bauhaus design this year, Nomos Glashutte has launched a limited issue of the Tangente Special Edition which honors and celebrates the traditional Bauhaus layout.
It pays homage to the spirit of Bauhaus and the immense beauty of minimalism. These 9 Tangente editions are available in three sizes that range from 33mm to 38mm. These are limited to the representative number of 100 pieces for style.
So, keeping the extensive history and heritage of Nomos in mind, it could be well remarked that no mention of the “Bauhaus” in watch-making could quite be complete without referring to the brand itself.
And the Tangente seems to be the very thing that took the brand to unbelievable heights in fame, making it a global icon.
The Tangente Datum reflects the beauty of this timeless collection and serves to be a magnificent example for whatever the Nomos Tangente stands for.
We hoped this had been a useful read for you!
Till next time!