Review (Video): Nomos Zürich Weltzeit/Worldtimer Topper Edition

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A couple of years ago, we took a look at the Oris Divers Sixty-Five Topper Edition. Through some small changes—removing the date, changing some of the text, etc.—Topper created the Divers Sixty-Five du jour, and being that it was a limited edition of just 100 units they all went fast. For their newest boutique edition, Topper has teamed up with Nomos to make a bespoke version of the brand’s iconic Zürich Worldtimer. Limited to a mere 30 pieces, this one is moving fast, too.The Nomos Zürich Worldtimer is one of the most sought after and beloved watches in Nomos’ collection, yet it’s also a bit of an outlier in terms of design. It’s bigger, busier, and more complicated than their other timepieces, yet it manages to still feel every bit a Nomos. What the Zürich Worldtimer really is is hinted at in the name; it’s Nomos’ “Swiss luxury” watch. Or rather, it’s Nomos’ German-made response to Swiss luxury watches.

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$6100

Review (Video): Nomos Zürich Weltzeit/Worldtimer Topper Edition

Case
Stainless Steel
Movement
DUW 5201
Dial
White lacquer
Lume
n/a
Lens
Sapphire
Strap
Shell cordovan
Water Resistance
3 atm
Dimensions
39.9mm x 49.4mm
Thickness
11mm
Lug Width
20mm
Crown
Push/pull
Warranty
Yes
Price
$6100

The case, measuring 39.9 millimeters wide, 49.4 millimeters lug-to-lug, and 11 millimeters tall, isn’t in Nomos’ typical small, svelte, and unisex style, particularly in height. Rather, it’s proportioned more like a contemporary man’s watch. It’s stronger and bolder, yet still refined and stripped down. Dominant, angular lugs frame a simple bezel, emphasizing the circular shape of the mid-case with a small gap where they meet. The crown at three is thin and wide, but offset by a conical extrusion from the case. It’s a subtle detail, but one that both makes the crown more accessible and the case more modern in appearance.

The star of the show, however, is the dial. Another departure for Nomos, the Worldtimer is quite complex, featuring multiple layers, discs and partial skeletonization. Basically, Nomos took a dial and cleverly gutted it, exposing a disc of cities that is used to declare the current city on display at 12, and a smaller hour disk at three, which reveals the home hour. The center of the dial then features a sub-seconds at six, which oh-so-slightly extends past the edge of the center area, and the minute and local hour hand.At a glance, the dial is complicated, busy even, but as soon as one becomes accustomed to the information on display, it becomes apparent that it’s actually one of the simplest world timers to use. One just has to press the pusher at two to jump the local hour forward by one hour. This also bounces through the 24 time zones indicated by major cities. The home time at three stays linked to where you came from (or home as it might be), and the minute stays put as well.

For the Topper Edition, Topper and Nomos took the dial and made it a glossy, lacquer white. This does a few things, the most significant of which is that it gives its a sheen resembling that of enamel. Furthermore, it deepens the white, and ups the luxuriousness of the watch overall. The coating also gently rounds out some details, which gives the segmented dial a slightly softer look.

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They’ve also replaced the polished rhodium-plated hands with heat-blued ones—a smart move in my book. This not only ups the contrast of the hands greatly, but it also plays off of the classic feel of the enamel-like lacquer, giving the dial a a traditional, pocket-watch vibe. I quite like this effect as the watch is still thoroughly modern and doesn’t look like it’s trying to be old, but the addition of some classic elements brings a touch of history into piece. Lastly, in the city ring, between Alaska and Denver, where “L. Angeles” typically would be, you’ll find “Burlingame,” the city where Topper is located.Inside of the Zürich Worldtimer is Nomos’ in-house DUW 5201 caliber. It’s an automatic movement with 26-jewels, hacking, hand winding, a power reserve of 42 hours, and a world time complication. It’s rhodium plated and decorated with striping, perlage, blued screws, and sunburst wheels for a truly gorgeous sight through the case back. It has also been adjusted to six positions. It’s worth noting that though this is an older movement from Nomos, previously named the “Xi,” it has been updated with their in-house “Swing System” escapement and rebadged as the DUW 5201. The DUW 5201 measures 13 3/4 lines (31 millimeters) and 5.7 millimeters thick, making it a fairly large movement.

On the wrist, the Zürich Worldtimer is always a handsome watch, but the Topper Edition might be my favorite version yet. Yes, the deep, inky-blue version is utterly gorgeous, but the glossy lacquer, blued-hand combo elevates this watch into different territory. It’s subtle, but the added dressy notes work so well with text-driven dial, and the contrasting hands really pop and tie it all together. Given the utility of the world time function, this is an ideal business watch.While Nomos is known for (at least on Worn & Wound) their value-driven in-house offerings, the Zürich Worldtimer commands a heavier price at $6,100. The Topper Edition keeps the same price, while also donating $200 per watch to the Burlingame Department of Parks and Recreation’s Tree Replacement Fund. While this is clearly an expensive timepiece, it’s hard to argue with the sheer desirability of it. That doesn’t make it an easier pill to swallow, but if it’s in your price range, this is one that should seriously be considered. The Topper Edition then adds the appeal of an extremely limited edition to the mix.


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Zach is the Co-Founder and Executive Editor of Worn & Wound. Before diving headfirst into the world of watches, he spent his days as a product and graphic designer. Zach views watches as the perfect synergy of 2D and 3D design: the place where form, function, fashion and mechanical wonderment come together.
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