Revival watches get me excited, and when you get even more historically accurate ones, boy do I get worked up. Zenith was on a mission and took a deep dive into their vintage catalog and found something below the surface of their regular collections. When you think of Zenith, what comes to mind? Probably chronographs. But this year at Watches & Wonder 2024, Zenith dropped the DEFY Revival A3648, a vintage-inspired diver, quite true to its 1969 original form. Yes, please. Zenith over the years has done a pretty good job with their Revivals, and this is what we have come to expect from Zenith.

The first thing you’ll notice is the funky case shape, as well as the brushed and polished 5-link bracelet. The case is brushed and polished to allow the angles to be seen. The dimensions are 37mm in diameter and 15.5mm thick. A tad thick, but for a hefty dive watch, it’s not uncommon. It has a crown at 4:30, just like the original, and an orange unidirectional bezel, and 600m (1969 feet for, you know, the year it was released). The fact that a compact watch in 1969 had this water resistance is quite impressive, while not as novel today. But sticking to the original, it is perfectly amazing. The Defy Revival A3648 also has a display sapphire caseback, which allows you to peer at the Zenith Elite 670 caliber. This automatic movement comes with a 50-hour power reserve and a frequency of 4hz.

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The black and orange theme continues onto the dial, featuring a matte black background complemented by orange hands and minute markers. Both the hour markers and hands are coated with white Super-LumiNova, which gives a bright green glow, perfect for underwater. It does have a 4:30 date, which drives my symmetry mind crazy. But I can overlook it for the rest of the watch. 

For a revival release, I’ve come to expect Zenith to nail it. This is right in line. Zenith has done a pretty great job with the Defy Revivals, and the A3648 might be my favorite. The bright orange and black is a great color combination on any watch. Keeping almost exclusively to its original roots makes it even better. The Zenith Defy Revival A3648 is available immediately for $7,700 USD. For more information, please visit the Zenith website.

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