Among the Swiss watchmakers of today, there’s one brand that’s almost always underrated when compared with its counterparts: Zenith. The century-old watchmaker has stood the test of time, not to mention burgeoning new technologies to create a business that’s one for the books. But with its storied past, it still isn’t one of the top destinations when shopping for luxury watches.
Blame it on the marketing. Zenith, as a brand, has come a long way in its marketing and promotion, but the heart of the brand’s ideology is still on the quality of watches that it creates–the movement, the make, the finish. In this article, we are looking at five Zenith watches that anyone looking to fill in their collection should check out:
1. Zenith El Primero A384 Revival
El Primero is one of the first automatic chronographs in the world. It’s also relatively one of the best Zenith watches there is. For most connoisseurs, getting a vintage El Primero means that they’ve arrived. But for those who want an updated version, look no further than the A384 Revival. For starters, this is a stunning watch. The build is updated to look more modern, with the corresponding movement upgraded as well.
As you may have guessed, this watch is the revival of the classic 1969 chronograph watch, which, objectively speaking, started the automatic chronograph race. Now it’s a chronometer, outfitted with new watch technologies. You’re getting an El Primero movement, which is historically based on the Valjoux 7750. The 7750 is arguably the best chronograph movement ever manufactured, so you have that going for you in terms of humble-bragging.
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Looks-wise, the watch is panda-Esque in the dial, but the updated case and bezel balance it out to look more like a modern monolith than a funky, adorable animal. The case is at 37mm like the original El Primero, but it wears bigger because of the hefty styling. The 36000 vph is technically hi-beat so if you’re looking at a Grand Seiko because of the movement, you may want to take another glance at this watch revival instead.
2. Zenith Heritage 146
There’s nothing like the Heritage 146 in the market today. Zenith made a winner out of this fine specimen of horological perfection, balancing automatic chronograph features and dress watch sophistication. Get this watch if you find the El Primero Revival too sporty, and want something that’s more muted but still packs quite the punch.
3. Zenith Elite 6150
A great Zenith starter watch, the Elite 6150 features the cleanest dial in this bunch. The sparkling white dial, dauphin hands, and stainless steel case is nothing short of pedestrian, but its the perfect watch to whip out for casual days at the office. It looks good in almost anything, and it’ll be tough to find an outfit that it won’t perfectly complement.
Under the hood, the automatic movement powering the watch is made in-house. That means Zenith designed, helmed, and manufactured the movement from the ground up. That alone is enough to get this watch, and if you’re still not convinced, the 100-hour power reserve might be the one to tip you to the agreeing side.
4. Zenith Elite Moonphase
If you’re one to favor classic styling in your timepieces, the Elite Moonphase should be right up your alley. Zenith is not just known for its automatic chronograph watches, it is also one of the best when it comes to thin profile movements. A thinner movement equals a thinner wristwatch, which means the timepiece should be lighter and easier to wear.
It is a dress watch if you’ve seen one. The 40.5mm dial is perfect even for those with smaller wrists, but the star here is the 18-carat gold or rose gold case. Paired with a dark blue leather strap that complements the blue moon phase complication in the dial, this is the watch to wear for something special – like an anniversary, birthday, and promotion.
5. Zenith Pilot Type 20
Among the Zenith watches featured here, the Pilot Type 20 may be the most out of bounds when it comes to the typical Zenith aesthetic. Pilot Type 20 is the quintessential men’s watch. It’s rugged looks – vintage leather strap, big Arabic numerals, single-crown on the side – screams of pilot watches from the good old days.
Trust us when we say that Zenith watches are timeless. Adding one to your collection will instantly up your taste level, not to mention the veracity of it. Check out the listed pieces here in your local stores, or set up an appointment with a Zenith boutique today!