Welcome to Episode 64 of the Tenn & Two Podcast!
Well guys, we are thrilled to have you to the show today. We are continuing on with our watch review series as we take a closer, in depth look at the Oak & Oscar Olmsted. This was our first experience with the brand based out of Chicago, followed by our interview with founder Chase Fancher. If you are newer to the podcast then we definitely recommend that you check out our chat with Chase from a few months ago on Episode 48.
The Oak & Oscar Olmsted
Before we get too in depth with our review, we start off by going over a few of the Olmsted specs. The Olmsted is a 38mm field watch that is powered by the ETA 2892 automatic calibre, giving wearers a 42 hour power reserve. Featuring 20mm lugs which both of us ladies adore (#allthestraps right), Olmsted also boats a well executed 44.9mm lug to lug at only 10.8mm thick which sits incredibly well, even on a smaller wrist. On top of that, the field watch boasts 100m of water resistance plus a screw down crown, making it perfect for daily life in any variation of condition. The double dome sapphire crystal is AR coated for easy legibility in various lighting. For the dial, you’ll find three color variations being grey, blue, or white. Now today we will be reviewing the grey dial which alson is a sandwich dial with color matching date wheel, a detail that both of us ladies adore. A vibrant orange second hand with Oak & Oscar logo on the counter wait is found sweeping across the dial. The Olmsted is available on either a strap or bracelet and comes with a watch wallet, nylon strap, and spring bar tool. Priced at $1,575 on the bracelet.
The Real Review…
Now that the facts are out of the way, we move on to our opinions about the watch. If this is your first time checking out one of our reviews, we break them down to a five question format that questions what we feel about the watch and why we feel that way. These are just our opinions, but we enjoy the challenge of putting alot of thought into them.
What are our favorite and least favorite features of the Olmsted?
Kat starts us off with her favorite feature being the numerals and the font. She explains that she has a real appreciation for little details such as this, and the fact that the “7” is done how she writes it is a great touch. Katlen’s favorite detail is a combination of a few different things, but more vaguely the dial in general. She goes into detail on appreciating the sandwich dial and how much of a contrast it provides with the numerals. The bright pop of orange gives a nice distraction and just enough personality without standing out too much. It’s crisp and clean.
Our least favorite features? For Kat it’s the clasp. While the watch and bracelet feel good, she doesn’t find the clasp to be of equal quality and would have liked to see more. While Katlen feels that the bracelet could have been better. Given, it is a field watch and is supposed to be subtle and discreet, even simple, she would have liked to have seen a bit more detail in finishing so that it stands out.
How versatile did we find the Olmsted to be?
Both of us ladies would score the Olmsted as an 8 out of 10 in terms of versatility. For Katlen, she loves how clean the watch is, making it easy to wear with a variety of outfits and styles. While it looks phenomenal on the bracelet and leather straps, her concern is in regards to NATO possibilities because of the pop of orange being so bold and difficult to match up. Of course, Chase from Oak & Oscar has apparently thought that through with his new line of NATO straps that feature the signature orange accent. Kat finds the watch equally versatile and perfect for everyday wear. Her exception is that it’s not something she feels you can dress up, typical of a field watch. The different looks that the Olmsted has on bracelet versus strap or NATO help make it appropriate for most every occasion.
Does the Olmsted suit its designated purpose?
As a field watch, yes. We both found the clean and simple design of the watch to be exactly what one would expect in a field watch. The all brushed case and bracelet allow the watch to fly completely under the radar. And while the dial has features that help it stand out and look unique, it still maintains a subtle appearance you would expect. Kats recommendation if you want the “field watch vibe” would be to purchase the grey or navy variation as the white does not have the Super Luminova in the numerals.
Does the Oak & Oscar Olmsted provide a fair value?
Another question that we both agree on for different reasons. Katlen points out that this is a tough price range for a micro brand to compete with at almost $1,600. But when you compare it to larger brands offering a similar design, it holds its own. For example, the IWC Mark XVII is a clean and traditional pilots watch with no upgraded materials on steel bracelet. With the same ETA 2892 calibre, the IWC goes for $5,400 which shows the value of the Olmsted. Kat finds some comparisons with quite a few watches of varying degree with a field watch style. When comparing with another microbrand like Monta with their Triumph at $1,595, it shows right on par with pricing in the micro sphere. The biggest comparison you can make in the group of field watches would be the Hamilton Khaki field on bracelet $500-800 which just doesn’t have as much detail in dial. On the higher end spectrum, she compares it to the Omega Railmaster with a very similar aesthetic but double to triple the price. Not to mention the incredible value that comes to play when you consider the fact that you also get the watch wallet and extra straps of great quality.
Would this be a watch that gets regular wear and lasts long term in our collections?
Kat says yes. It is a style that works very well for her. The only negative that she finds is the lack of polishing in regards to the finishing. While the Olmsted has a well brushed case and bracelet, it lacks the high polished accents that she tends to prefer here and there. After all, it was for that reason that she got rid of both her Railmaster and a Hamilton Khaki field. In Katlen’s opinion, she believes the same in regards to wishing that it had a bit of polishing, but understands that it is a field watch and isn’t necessarily supposed to be what we could consider traditionally “pretty”. That being said, when it was in our possession, she wore it regularly and it really stood out in her collection as something completely different.
All in all, we were both quite impressed with this piece. The Olmsted really offers a lot of value for its design and engineering. On top of that, having a personal relationship with founder Chase makes it a brand that we enjoy supporting so much more. And as if the brand couldn’t get any better, a portion of their proceeds go to the “One Tail at a Time” dog rescue.
Be safe and we’ll be chatting to y’all again soon.
Kat and Katlen
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