The year 1969 was a watershed moment for Zenith – marking the arrival of the now legendary Zenith El Primero automatic chronograph movement. For years, it stood as the caliber against which all others would be measured. Even after the Quartz Crisis had its way with Zenith, the lore of the El Primero remained – so much so that Rolex used the caliber as the basis for its first-ever automatic Daytona movement (the Crown abides). Years later, Zenith – along with the El Primero – remains a fixture and lodestar of the automatic chronograph game. Today, we look at the latest innovation of the EP.
That’s right, today we turn our eyes to the new 38mm Zenith Chronomaster Original. Design-wise, the tri-color aesthetic pays homage to early Chronomaster watches of the late 1960s and early ’70s. And then there’s that curious text on the dial, which reads, 36,000VpH. That’s the indication that something new is under the hood, by way of the caliber 3600 with 1/10th-of-a-second timing functionality. Once you initiate the chronograph function on this one and see the hands fly across the dial, you won’t be able to look away.
The Spec Sheet rolls on, with a watch that oozes mid-century charm but doesn’t give up an inch of horological credibility.
There’s a reason the Zenith El Primero movement is so good, and this watch proves that it’s still getting better.