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Zenith Watches: Top Choices

When people ask me for my most underrated watch brands, I always mention Zenith watches. The reason is that they deliver a massive amount of value for their price range. I really think that they could be one of the top watch brands in the world, if not for their shaky advertising strategy. Marketing aside, you can put Zenith watches head to head with any brand in its price range, and it holds up completely. I go through my 5 favorite Zenith watches in the following passages.

1: El Primero Chronograph

Zenith El Primero Chronograph

The El Primero Chronograph is by far Zenith’s most famous watch, and it is for good reason. This collection has an iconic design, robust craftsmanship, and quality that will absolutely wow you. Zenith doesn’t hold back on the materials in this watch, given that it incorporates a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, alligator leather, and sturdy stainless steel.

I also really enjoy how creative they get with the sub dial colors. There’s just something so pleasing about the combination of silver, gray, blue, black, and every other scheme that Zenith uses. The last major perk of this model is that it comes in precious metals, in addition to stainless steel. This option allows you to go with a more luxurious vibe, as long as you have the desire and money to spend.

2: El Primero Chronomaster

Zenith El Primero Chronomaster

You can take just about everything I said about the Chronograph and apply it to the Chronomaster. The primary difference is the latter’s skeleton design. Rather than the typical 3 sub dial look, these models replace one of them with a view into the heart of the watch. Those of you who love the skeleton aesthetic should take a long look at this option, as it delivers a significant amount of value.

There are two more aspects of this model that I think are incredibly charming. The first is the star logo of Zenith, which you can find on the crown and case back. The second is the rest of that case back, which is exceptionally beautiful. Between the small window on the dial and the large window on the back, you’ll develop an intimate relationship with your Chronomaster’s movement.

3: Pilot

Changing it up, we have the Pilot, which is impressive in a variety of ways. The first is its general aesthetics, as it is quite minimalistic and doesn’t crowd the dial at all. Zenith still manages to give a nod to the aviation genre, as it has a subtle tachymeter on the outside. I also love the fact that it is so legible. This watch has big, easy to read numbers that you can effortlessly see from a few feet away.

Zenith Pilot

Lastly, I have a soft spot for big crowns, and this Zenith has one. There’s just something so aesthetically pleasing about this part of a watch having some bulk and getting your hands on it is even better. If you love pilot watches, then you should definitely consider this model.

4: Elite

Zenith Elite

The Elite is proof that Zenith truly does it all. We’ve already discussed two excellent chronograph watches and one from the pilot genre. Now, we have an elegant and minimalist dress piece to consider. It is a collection that is small, simple, and does the exact job it’s meant to do.

My favorite thing about it is how customizable it is. If you like a rich blue over black, you can get that. If you want 42mm over 39, Zenith can meet your needs. This versatility makes it a timepiece that I can recommend to just about anyone. It doesn’t matter how large your wrist is or what colors look best to you. The Zenith Elite will satisfy no matter what.

5: El Primero Defy

The Defy is essentially an evolution of the two El Primero collections we’ve already discussed. Rather than being a conventional case or having a skeleton window, its entire dial is see through. Rather than being somewhat of a traditional stainless-steel piece, it is made from titanium or ceramic. Still, it retains the Zenith quality that you expect, despite its many differences.

Zenith El Primero Defy

Though the skeleton models are by far the most popular, you can actually get yourself a more traditional looking watch in this collection. You will still get that especially robust craftsmanship and those more unconventional materials, but you can have a dial that isn’t so eye-catching.

Many watch enthusiasts feel that a collection is not complete until it has some impressive complication in it. They often choose a chronograph, and in my opinion, the Zenith El Primero collections are some of the best options out there. This brand also creates pieces that delve into other niches and thrive there too, as we see with the Elite and Pilot. All in all, Zenith watches are a fantastic option, and going with any of the 5 choices on this list is a sure bet.

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