Omni Dick Tracy Magnetic Space Musical Alarm

Omni Dick Tracy Magnetic Space Musical Alarm

Omni’s Dick Tracy watch is the *almost* identical twin to the Bradley Star Wars Musical watch.

They are both as rare as each other (although the Star Wars watch is more highly sought-after due to the enormous Star Wars fanbase) and have plenty in common. Both have animated LCDs, both have a main character on the watch face whose eyes move/flash each second, they both play music and they just look like they’re two peas in a pod.

Differences, though, the LCD graphics feature an x-wing in the Star Wars watch, and the Space Coupe in the Tracy watch. In the Star Wars watch the X-wing starts in the bottom left and moves across the watch face, whereas the Tracy watch has the Space Coupe land on the moon, after which Dick Tracy himself appears in silhouette, then a US flag is mounted on the moon.

On the Star Wars watch, C3P0’s eyes flash on and off, and on the Tracy watch Dick’s eyes flick back and forth.

Melody-wise, the Star Wars watch has the (long, almost 60 seconds) theme from the movie, whereas the Tracy watch has three melodies that play one after the other — Call to Post (you’ll have heard it, even if you don’t recognise the name – they play it before almost every horse race), Yankee Doodle, and America the Beautiful.

The Tracy watch also has a top-left button which turns on a backlight. There’s no light (and no button) on the Star Wars watch.

On the back, they’re both made in Hong Kong, the Star Wars watch attributed to Bradley Time Division, and the Tracy watch to Personal Electronics Inc – along with the Omni logo.

The Star Wars watch is copyright to Lucas Films, dated 1982; and the Tracy watch is copyright 1981 to the Chicago Tribune.

Functions are fairly basic, and are identical on both watches.

Top right cycles between time, date/month, and seconds. Bottom right is the set/select – with an interesting twist. The last mode, before getting back to the start, give you the option to choose 0,1,2 or 3. After some debate it seems this is in order for the watch to get the date right (dividing the current year by four gives you either 0.25 (1), 0.5 (2), 0.75 (3) or a whole number (0). Bottom right switches to alarm mode and starts playing the melody (which can be stopped by pressing either top or bottom right). In alarm mode you can set a daily alarm and turn it on or off.

No hourly time signal (shame) but the functions were less important than the themes I’m guessing.

These are great watches and are survivors from a bygone era. They would have made thousands of them which would have been daily wearers for their proud juvenile owners so most have been lost to time.

If you can find either, expect to pay plenty for a working version (leaking batteries are common in these, which can easily wreck the modules) but if you’re a fan of either, they are a must-have!

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3 Responses to Omni Dick Tracy Magnetic Space Musical Alarm

  1. Hello, I have a Omni dick Tracy watch. Was my grandfather’s (he collected all kinds of watches) this is in excellent condition, new battery, I can’t seem to find any comps. On this piece..is it that rare? Thanks for your response, I’m a little lost with this watch!

    • Hello, I actually just purchased one of these from a private auction and paid $650.00 for it. It was definitely more than I wanted to pay but I had one as a child and it’s so difficult to find I figured why not. There were two bidders behind me so I guess I’m not the only crazy one. Good luck with whatever you choose to do with it.

  2. Just a heads up on the O, 1, 2 OR 3
    FLASH (THIS IS TO SET THE YEAR ACCORDING TO LEAPYEARS WITH A LEAP YEAR BEING O AND I BEING A YEAR AFTER A LEAP YEAR AND SO ON…).

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