Nomos Glashütte Tangente Neomatik 41 Update Review

Introduction // The Date Re-imagined

NOMOS has been on my radar for a while now ever since I was introduced to their Metro family – fun, playful, clean, slender and precise timepieces. The Metro Date Power Reserve fascinated me and the more I looked into it, the more intrigued I became with it and the company. What I particularly like about NOMOS is their design sense, attention to detail and innovation. For those unfamiliar with the brand, Nomos is a relatively young company founded in 1990 and based in Glashütte – the birthplace of the German watchmaking industry. But it wasn’t until a few months ago that I got to see their collection in person. I live in Belgium and unfortunately NOMOS does not have any retailers here (yet?). Since I frequently travel to or transit in Germany or Switzerland, I eventually found myself wandering around Zurich checking out various watch boutiques. The very friendly staff at Gellner & Friends were kind enough to show me through their collection.

In person, they look fantastic. My wrist is quite average at about 18cm (7″) and maybe it’s just that I am more used to wearing dials with a diameter of 40-42mm, but I felt the 37mm NOMOS models to be a bit small for me. They wear larger than other watches in similar size ranges due to their design and small bezel but it just didn’t feel right for me. I also got to check out the larger 41mm Autobahn series recently unveiled at Baselworld 2018. The quirky curved dial and speedometer like design elements of the face stood out but again it didn’t excite me as much to want to own one for myself.

That’s when I discovered that there was one other ‘Update’ at Baselworld 2018 – a new model each for the Tangente, Ludwig and Orion – all fitted with the newly developed in-house caliber DUW 6101. The NOMOS Tangente Neomatik 41 Update was the one that really caught my attention. I was specifically looking for a watch which:

  • was not a diver, since I already own the Omega Seamaster 300 Master Co-axial (review soon!)
  • could dress up or down with clean design and styling
  • has a date and optionally a moonphase complication
  • was thin with a diameter between 40-42mm
  • has a seconds hand (large or small)
  • preferably has an in-house movement
  • has a display caseback

To be within my budget, I preferred a stainless steel version over precious materials like gold or titanium. The Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin Moon in stainless steel was an option but I felt it was a bit too dressy for everyday wear. I still hope to eventually add this one to my collection sometime in the future. Other options I considered were the Junghans Max Bill Chronoscope and the IWC Portugieser Chronograph 150th Anniversary edition. The latter being a limited edition of 2000 pieces in each color (blue and white) and most of them already reserved. IWC has around 2000 dealers around the world so most places would generally receive no more than 1 or 2 pieces (and sometimes none) later this summer or in October. The boutique in Zurich which I visited would receive around 12 of each and all of them are spoken for. While the Portugieser looks stunning in pictures, I wasn’t so comfortable putting down a deposit on something I had never seen in person. With that said I did manage to see a prototype version in white last week in Harrods in London which they had just received. I’m also first on a no obligations waitlist at another dealer in another country for the blue version. But I haven’t decided about it even though it is very tempting…

That brought me to the NOMOS. Hodinkee published an introductory piece calling it the coolest new NOMOS release for 2018. With a larger dial diameter of 40.5mm and part of the iconic Tangente family, this sounded exactly like what I wanted. The innovative date complication with red markers on the perimeter of the dial almost immediately had me sold. I needed to go look at this watch and that seemed to be the tough part with every dealer I went to saying, ‘coming soon’ or ‘coming very soon’ or some variant of that. Granted this wasn’t going to be a limited edition but I was a tad bit impatient. I always enquired during various trips to Frankfurt, Munich, Geneva, Zurich or the Netherlands at dealers and at airports. Eventually not so long ago I got a call from one of the dealers in the Netherlands that they had just received 2 pieces. The very next morning, I was on a train.

First impressions

The watch looks even better in person. The dial is not white as I thought it was but more a silvery cream color. The size and proportions were perfect for my wrist. I especially loved the long, slender hands with the NOMOS’s typical clean Bauhaus styling and typography. Visibility is great with the anti-reflective coating on the flat sapphire crystal on the front, and the back has a display caseback showcasing the beautiful new DUW 6101 movement. What also surprised me a bit was how light the watch was at only 58g – which is about a third of what the Omega weighs (stainless steel bracelet included)!

The first time I showed people photos of the face, the usual question is why there are two red markers for the date. On closer look they realize themselves that the current date is actually sandwiched between the markers. A very satisfying moment and a beautiful solution to the date display. I wonder if we will see more watchmakers follow this or something similar.


The new DUW 6101 caliber developed in-house powers the Tangente and is a self winding automatic movement. This is an evolution of the original neomatik caliber (DUW 3001) which NOMOS introduced in 2015. 3 years in the making, the new movement is larger at 35.2mm in diameter but only 3.6mm in height. Another unique feature about the date mechanism is the ability to quickly set the date in either direction which is not so common among automatic date complications. Additionally, it only takes about 30 minutes for the date to change between 23:45 and 00:15. Unlike other automatic watches where it is not recommended to change the date between 9pm and 3am, with this advanced new caliber the timeframe is considerably small at only 90 minutes. Even if you accidentally attempt it, there is a safety mechanism to prevent any damage. The Tangente Neomatik 41 Update has a power reserve of 42 hours.

Turn the watch over and you get to see the movement. The words “Nomos Glashütte Deutsche Uhrenwerke” are embossed on the skeleton rotor and the lettering is gold plated. The rest of the caliber is beautifully decorated with the balance wheel, gears, rubies, tempered blue screws and perlage – everything is put together gorgeously. NOMOS develops and manufactures its movements in house and 95% of it is created in Glashütte. Majority of the work is done by hand and hi-tech equipment is used for the parts that require extreme precision. As with all other movements they produce, the DUW 6101 is capable of chronometer accuracy. Wearing the watch for the past 2 weeks I’ve noticed it to be well within this, gaining around 1-2 seconds a day.

To set the date, you pull the crown out one stop and to set the time you pull it out two stops which also allows the seconds to be hacked. Being a neomatik caliber, you don’t necessarily have to wind it as it does so automatically from the movements of your hand while you are wearing the watch. But you can always give it a manual wind with the crown in the fully pushed in position.

The watch is rated to 5 ATM or 50m so I wouldn’t recommend anything more than showering with it. This isn’t the one you want to jump into the pool with while wearing it. Another thing that I’ve noticed which I then found is quite common with the Neomatik models is the rotor winding noise. You definitely feel and hear the sound of it while wearing the timepiece. This is absolutely OK and is not a cause for worry as clarified by NOMOS themselves through user Covenant on the watchuseek forums. They say, “Regarding the noise level of our neomatik timepieces: In actual fact, the rotor and movement mechanism are no louder than those of any other NOMOS watch. A side effect of the particularly slender design of the neomatik case, however, is that the movement sounds are transmitted externally with a touch more “gusto” than they would otherwise be. So there’s nothing to be concerned about when it comes to movement sounds in any of our neomatik watches.” I actually quite like it knowing that I’m wearing something that is meticulously ticking and working to keep excellent time while being subjected to all kinds of vibrations, movements and the environment.

Like most other NOMOS watches, the Tangente Neomatik 41 Update comes with a Genuine Horween Shell Cordovan strap with a lug width of 20mm which I’ve found to be extremely comfortable. I can’t comment on the durability as it has been only 2 weeks of wearing it but they are known to age very well requiring no special care. I don’t plan to change to a fabric strap for the summer months but even if I eventually do need a new one in a few years, they are quite inexpensive selling for between €60-100 on the NOMOS website. On the other end is a stainless steel, hand polished clasp engraved with the NOMOS logo.

Finally, the watch comes in a no-nonsense packaging – functional and to the point and I could say typically German. A lovely sleeve that fits the watch along with a cleaning cloth and holder for the guarantee card.


I think NOMOS has a true winner with the Tangente Neomatik 41 Update. Aesthetically pleasing, versatile, a very interesting and unique complication, powered by a technologically advanced movement at a very competitive price. There isn’t really anything I can find fault with except maybe that some people will find the size a little big for them.

The watch is available directly from NOMOS or through local retailers from May 2018.

Technical Details

(Taken from the official site)

Brand: NOMOS Glashütte
Model: Tangente Neomatik 41 Update
Reference: 180
Case: Stainless steel, sapphire crystal on the front and back with anti-reflective coating
Dial: galvanized, white silver-plated
Hands: oxidized black
Diameter: 40.5mm
Thickness: 7.9mm
Weight: 58g
Water Resistance: 5 ATM (suitable for showering)
Strap: Genuine Horween Shell Cordovan black, lug width of 20mm
Caliber: DUW 6101 Automatic
Power reserve: 42 hours
Jewels: 27
Frequency: 4 Hz (28,800 vph)
Accuracy: Chronometer
Price: €3200 / $4,100 / CHF 3,250

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