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Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Have you seen a cleaner looking classy GMT? I don’t think I have. Especially one that is so simple to read and operate. This is the new Zenith Captain Dual Time watch from the brand’s Elite movement collection. Elite movements are a little step down from El Primero movements – but also made in-house by Zenith. While El Primero movements operate at 36,000 bph, Elite ones operate at a more traditional 28,800 bph. They are also more affordable, and offer one of the best values around when looking to get a watch with in-house made Swiss movement.

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The piece is really a beauty. There are a lot of desirable elements such as the guilloche machine engraved dial, legible dial, and easy to operate GMT function and movement. It just exudes class and sophistication, but not at the expense of function. The steel case is 40mm wide and straight-forward in its design. The polish is well-done and mixes with the metal dial very nicely. Zenith really impressed me with the dial decoration and design. You know all those times when I complain about how hands are too short? Well my friends, this is certainly not one of those times. Do you see how much better properly sized hands can make a dial look? Just imagine them shorter and consider how much that would take away from the design. See what I mean? To people designing watches, this is the right length for such dial and the watch’s proportions. NOT less. Stepping down from the soap box now.

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Strong looking hands and applied hour indicators are crisp and easy to see. Not sure if there is lume on the dial though. The Sapphire crystal is AR coated and provides a clear view of the dial. On the dial the GMT hand is easy to distinguish from the Hour and minutes hands. It also helps that the seconds are displayed in a subsidiary dial. You’ll see that Zenith also managed to tastefully integrate the date. I am really loving the design and look of that blued steel GMT hand.

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

In addition to the silvered dial, there is a black dial version of the watch (with some minor dial differences). The GMT hand is operated by a pusher placed at 10 o’clock. Zenith did this to make it so that changing the GMT time was easy during traveling. I appreciate that as you usually need to use the crown and can often up changing the time and the date accidentally. Note the unobtrusive but visible 24 hour time scale for the GMT hand.

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Zenith Captain Dual Time Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Powering the watch is the Zenith Elite Caliber 682 automatic movement. You already know the functions, and it has a power reserve of 50 hours. Other features include an instant date change feature and stop-seconds for adjusting the time. You can see the automatic movements through the sapphire caseback window. The Zenith Captain Dual Time comes on a black or brown alligator strap or metal bracelet. The bracelet model is quite nice. Zenith also offers a model in 18k rose gold. Prices for the Captain Dual Time watches (in Europe) start at $3,700 euros up to 9,600 euros for the gold version.


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  • Fred I

    $4400 in the US

  • kris.c

    This is a stunner alright, although I would prefer 42 or 44mm. The skeletonized GMT hand is interesting – the first picture makes it look like it has a lume-filled tip, but no.

  • Simeon Weinraub

    I think that Zenith has become my favorite brand. This watch is beautiful to me. As Mr Adams said, the hands are the right length, but also, the face is uncluttered with unnecessary banding. The time and GMT can be read at a glance, but the attention to detail and quality means that you can be happy to look at it longer. I want one!

  • Absolutely outstanding. I’m a huge Zenith fan, and have always loved the Chronomasters. This new Captain has much better lines than the Class series and the dial detail looks fantastic. They really nailed it when it comes with proportioning and synergy on this one.

  • Steve

    I think Zenith makes some outstanding and reasonably priced watches. I really love how companies like Zenith, NOMOS (love their new worldtimer), and Seiko/Grand Seiko produce great watches with in-house movements at the same prices or cheaper than imposters who feel it is ok mislead consumers by slapping an off-the-shelf or barely modified movement into their product.

    • Jonathan Liptrot

      Zenith and Grand Seiko in the same sentence I could not agree with you more.

  • Ulysses

    Simple, elegant, yet quite imposing and masculine. Great colour options too. There’s something of Jekyll and Hyde about Zenith. Sometimes they come out with an appalling watch, yet they are quite capable of beautiful work like this. Oy, the hands! You’re right though – I don’t like short stubby hands, which is one of the things I dislike about a lot of divers watches. There must be some sort of “golden ratio” for these things.

    • There are certain ratio rules that exist for has yes, but the problem is that they assume certain types of dial proportions. With today’s range of dials, brands need to look at the hands length on each particular watch design individually.

  • Eric

    I agree with Kris – a little larger and I would be more interested. Even so, and this may offend some, but it seems too “dressy” for my likes. I don’t think I would buy this before I turned 60. In other words, even on the bracelet I don’t see this as a watch I would wear everyday.

    (Sorry in advance for the blasphemous comment.)

  • Fred I

    I for one am happy to see a watchmaker stick to a more classic size. I do enjoy larger watches, I own a 44mm Panerai and have worn watches up to 46mm and while I do enjoy them and I like the modern look, I feel like it has gotten out of hand recently. Its almost as if the new generation (I am only in my 20s) of watch aficionados is allergic to anything under 44mm.

    I still think 36-38mm is a very decent size for a mens dress watch and for me personally 40mm makes for a very versatile piece which can be worn in almost any occasion. In my mind 40mm is the sweet spot between a dressy or more casual piece.

    • Chris

      One point to also consider, the lugs on this also appear reasonably long. That’s a huge and under-appreciated factor in watch size/fit.

    • Funny for me 36mm is lady or kid size, and for others it is “proper.” If it looks like a charm on my wrist, I don’t want to wear it.

  • korbindallis

    like this watch