Zenith and chronograph complications are an enduring love story. The epitome of this connection can be traced back to 1969, when the Le Locle-based brand released one of the earliest automatic chronographs, the iconic El Primero machine. core. And this year, Zenith has been working hard to maintain this spirit, focusing all resources on the Chronomaster series; first, it launched the sporty modern chronograph Chronomaster Sport; then, by releasing the Chronomaster Original, this watch was faithfully designed and upgraded The mechanism reinterprets the iconic A386 steel El Primero reference in 1969. The latter is the basis for the new online exclusive version, which pays homage to another iconic characteristic three-color dial with Zenith Chronomaster Original E-commerce-we will show it in this hands-on article, which will be in collaboration with branded products Explained in a video by Romain Marietta, Director of Development and Tradition.
Direct descendants of A386
If the Chronomaster Sport is a modern and sports watch, often described as the best alternative to Daytona, then the Zenith Chronomaster Original is the closest watch to the watch that started it all at Zenith in the late 1960s. It is part of the trilogy equipped with the El Primero automatic chronograph movement, and the most famous reference A386 in the trilogy. The trilogy includes the barrel-shaped panda dial model A384, the same case but with an original gradient brown dial (probably the first of its kind), A386 (the most classic of the three models) and A386. The round case and the watch displaying the iconic tri-color counter for the first time have become the hallmark of Zenith.
This special watch A386 not only has a high collection value and popularity, but has been a source of deep inspiration for Zenith for many years. Over the years, the brand’s product portfolio has a watch that can be regarded as a tribute to this vintage model. The classic 38mm Chronomaster with silver dial, three-color chronograph, rimless case and Calibre El Primero 400, is The closest you can go back to the original movement of 1969.
In 2021, following the Chronomaster Sport, the brand released another member of the series. This watch is inspired directly by the A386, but benefits from the brand’s latest generation of highly acclaimed automatic chronograph movements. This means that the compact 38mm steel case is exactly the same as the original, the dial has the same proportions, the same white hands, and of course there is an option of silver-white dial with blue, anthracite and gray counter counters. The interior is machine Core El Primero 3600, shared with Chronomaster Sport.
CHRONOMASTER ORIGINAL E-COMMERCE, pushing the three-color concept to the extreme
In the words of Romain Marietta, this new version of Chronomaster Original is a geek, fan-oriented model. It was created to please fans of three-color dials. It uses three iconic shades most widely. In this case, Geeky does not mean that you have done too much, please rest assured. It’s just that Zenith has created a more playful and interesting watch, but it is not a gimmick.
This is not the first time the brand offers such exclusive online watches. In 2020, the brand launched the Chronomaster Revival Manufacture Edition, which is already an online model for fans. Since the pandemic, e-commerce has become an important part of brand sales, so Zenith reiterated this point in this Chronomaster Original e-commerce.
First of all, this watch is Chronomaster Original, which means that everything we loved in the classics is back, but the dial design is bolder. But all the basic specifications are the same, the first is the well-designed and proportioned stainless steel case. With a diameter of 38 mm, its shape directly mimics the A386 watch, with typical pointed lugs, a flat surface decorated with radial drawing, a polished thin bezel, a classic pump chronograph button and a highly domed sapphire crystal glass. All in all, aside from the presence of modern materials and (very) minimal updates, it is a 1:1 copy of the 1969 icon.
The dial is also a very loyal tribute to the original watch, benefiting from the fact that the basic movement still uses the same structure as in 1969 to respect the ratio of the sub-disk. Therefore, we found the overlapping counter and date at 4:30, which are two elements of contention, but this is definitely correct for the original El Primero watch. In addition, the overall configuration and shape of the elements are also respected, the inclined inner flange with graduations-but no longer a speedometer, but 1/10 second. The hands painted white here with black inserts are again consistent with the A386.
But what is really important is the most notable feature of Chronomaster Original and the previous A386… that is the use of three different colors. If these usually appear on the sub-counter, Zenith Chronomaster Original Ecommerce further promotes this concept, the external scale (usually black) is divided into three parts, showing the same shade of gray and blue. Chronograph. This marks the first time that another part of the dial next to the chronograph has been made in the three colors associated with El Primero. This is an element that makes the watch more interesting and “nerd”, but still in a very subtle way.
The tri-color theme also extends to the strap. The strap is made of dark gray nubuck leather, which matches the minute counter of the chronograph at 6 o’clock on the dial, while the ring pin on the right matches the chronograph’s No. The two counters are matched at 3 o’clock, and the light gray stitching on the left matches the running seconds hand, subtly paying tribute to the most iconic cheap Zenith dial.
The movement under the screw-in sapphire crystal glass not only respects the original structure of El Primero, but also makes full use of the latest developments of the brand. Calibre El Primero 3600 still uses the same base as the historic movement, but it takes full advantage of the 36,000 vibrations per hour. It can accurately display 1/10 of a second, but it also becomes more efficient because the power reserve is increased to 60 hours. It retains the column wheel and horizontal coupling structure. The movement is also more modern in design and decoration. The appearance is cleaner, more contrasting and more technical, and the splints are more open, just like the oscillating weight with the five-pointed star logo. The column wheel is picked out in blue, and the splint is decorated with a radial drawing pattern.
Technical Specifications-ZENITH CHRONOMASTER ORIGINAL ECOMMERCE
Case: diameter 38 mm x height approx. 13 mm-stainless steel case, brushed and polished-dome sapphire crystal-sapphire crystal screw-in case back-50 meters water resistance
Dial: Silver dial with three-color sub-dial and 1/10 second track-Faceted and applied rhodium-plated hour markers-White hands coated with Super-LumiNova
Movement: Calibre El Primero 3600-automatic integrated high-frequency chronograph with column wheel and horizontal coupling-35 jewels-30 mm-36,000 vibrations/hour-60 hours power reserve-hours, minutes, small seconds , Date, chronograph with 1/10 seconds central hand, 60 seconds and 60 minutes totalizer
Strap: Grey calfskin with special stitching and stainless steel tri-fold buckle