MatchTime: Zenith vs Omega - Which Is The Best Watch Brand?
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MatchTime: Zenith vs Omega - Which Is The Best Watch Brand?

MatchTime: Zenith vs Omega - Which Is The Best Watch Brand?


Timelords, we promise we won’t plagiarise any William Wallace Braveheart speeches as we introduce the battle of Zenith vs Omega! The former is the rock’n’roll luxury brand in the blue shorts, established in 1865 from the land of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. 

In the red shorts, dating back to 1848 is the hard hitting Omega brand from Bienne. So, who exactly is the best watch brand this time around?

Zenith are noted for their technical ingenuity with the El Primero calibre that’s become more legendary than Elvis. And their innovative use of materials and design such as ceramic and skeletonisation. Boasting the incredible icy cold stylings of the Defy Extreme Glacier to the gorgeous, rainbow colourings of the Defy 21 Chroma II, they are a hot horological presence. 

Omega are similarly great innovators in the timekeeping world. They pride themselves on collaboration as shown through the Seamaster 300M Paris 2024 Olympics and the brilliant Swatch brand to release the MoonSwatch in a variety of themes, including planets like Neptune and colours like Strawberry Moon. How could we forget the incredible Omega Speedmaster? The first timepiece on the moon in 1969, this has swiftly become a grail piece of all manner of horologists. 

Seconds out!


History and Brand Reputation Of Zenith vs Omega


Zenith runs as far back as 1865 when it was originally founded by Georges Favre-Jacot in Neuchâtel, Switzerland. Originally started as a small scale workshop in Le Locle, the company became a production powerhouse, eventually earning the title of Manufacture d'Horlogerie. 

They subsequently went on to achieve the Grand Prix award at The 1900 Paris World Fair for their calibre. 

Georges Favre-Jacot - Source - Wikidata

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Omega’s roots stem back even earlier. Established in 1848, they rose out of the ranks of La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland and established themselves as one of the largest watch companies. By 1903, they produced around 240,000 watches annually. They released the world's first minute repeating watch in 1892 and the first ever tourbillon watch in 1947, showcasing their highly innovative brand, use of complications and top notch precision. 

Zenith however were just as revolutionary in their early days. During the 1900 Paris Universal Exhibition, they won a chronometry award and continued in the 1940s to win five straight Neuchatel Observatory prizes with their astonishing Calibre 135. How good are they? Well, they’ve won a total of over 2,330 prizes for chronometry to date!

Speedmaster - Source - Brand’s Site

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While they are one of the ultimate brands for technical skill, Omega excels in both technicality and in great horology. We must give our dues to the Rolls Royce of timepieces in their catalogue…the Beatles of their horological anthology, the Speedmaster. This was officially declared “Flight Qualified for all Manned Space Missions” in 1965 and was considered the first watch to be worn on the moon, via the wrist of Buzz Aldrin in 1969. 

Now Buzz Aldrin is performing different kinds of legendary feats. He became a “triple-wrister”, a person that wears three watches in total on their wrists. He wears the following watches:

  • Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch (New Model)
  • 18K yellow gold Omega De Ville Chronoscope 
  • Omega Skywalker 
  • X-33

The triple wristing act is a play on the double-wristing style that well known leaders like Fidel Castro and celebs like Chris Pratt adorn. 

That’s not all. They compete with Zenith’s technical prowess by releasing the first calibre that's capable of being resistant to magnetic fields greater than 15,000 gauss in 2013 and the introduction of Master Chronometer Certification in 2015 which combines both COSC and METAS certification. 

Chronomaster Sport - Source - Brand’s Site

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Zenith have heavily influenced the sports watch industry through the Chronomaster Sport that they introduced in 2021. Combining fantastic Chronometer calibre with gorgeous designs, the watches won the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève 2021 “Chronograph” prize and have now included precious metals into the case. 

However, while Zenith may hold the crown for being excellent in terms of accuracy and providing consistently great calibres, our heart lies with Omega due to their great historical achievements such as the first watch to ever set foot on the moon and their all round certification for technical brilliance. 

Sorry, Zenith. This time, we give the accolade for brand history and reputation to Omega. 


Top Models Of Zenith And Omega


Zenith watches are owned by a variety of well known individuals, including Mahatma Gandhi who owned a silver pocket watch with an alarm function, Will Ferrell who owns an El Primero and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers who has his own inspired piece, debuted at the end of 2023…aptly titled “The 2023 Chronomaster Sports Aaron Rodgers”

Omega’s watches however are owned by a vast number of modern celebs with a back catalogue as lengthy as Michael Jackson. This includes George Clooney, Daniel Craig, Eddie Redmayne and Mark Knopfler who is in possession of a gorgeous Speedmaster watch ref. 3693.50. 

The Speedmaster is without question their most iconic collection due to its lunar links as the first watch on the moon. It has an effortless sporty charm with the tachymetric scale and chronograph dial face. We certainly don’t discriminate against their other watches like The dive inspired Seamaster, Genta inspired Constellation and the dressy De Ville line. 

However, you may find that the Zenith portfolio is what turns your head just that extra notch. The Chronomaster collection is the equivalent of the Speedmaster watch in terms of sporty allure, chronograph functionality and the tachymetric scale. The Pilot watches offer a brilliant line for the aviation minded folks and The Defy line is the ultimate collection with an El Primero calibre, octagonal bezel and integrated bracelet. Timeless!

The Chronomaster Sport is a watch that is revered in the community with plenty of vintage vibes and is designed for those who enjoy active life. Take for example The 2023 Chronomaster Sport Aaron Rodgers. Measuring 41mm of steel, the watches feature a green ceramic bezel, a green, tri-colour dial and large, Jersey style Arabic numerals. 

Powered by an El Primero 3600 calibre, the watches offer 1/10th of a second chronograph, a power reserve of 60 hours and 36,000Vph. 

Chronomaster Sport Aaron Rodgers - Source - Brand’s Site

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The Pilot Big Date Flyback watch is built into a  42.5mm black ceramic case with an oversized crown. Paired with a black corrugated dial, large white Arabic numerals and a black Cordura effect rubber strap. This is the ultimate watch for aviator fanatics or those who love a little sporty spice in their everyday activities.. 

Why not take a look at the Omega brand for some of their excellent lines like the Seamaster watches. At 42mm, these steel watches feature a black ceramic bezel with a white enamel diving scale. The dial is complemented with laser engraved waves and rhodium plated raised indexes which are covered with Super-Luminova. 

Take a look at the helium escape valve at 10 o’clock that entitles you to an impressive 300 metres of water resistance. Master Chronometer Certified? Absolutely!

Seamaster - Source - Omega

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If diving pieces don't cut the horological mustard, why not stare at the lunar inspired Speedmaster? You can land yourself a variation in their own Moonshine gold that was specifically created by the brand in 2019 and combines yellow gold with silver, copper and palladium, resulting in a beautiful pale hue. The caseback is similarly made of gold and features the words “FIRST WATCH WORN ON THE MOON” engraved on the back. 

It boasts a British Racing Green dial with moonshine gold baton markers, hands and a Ceragold tachymetric scale on the bezel with that all too familiar dot over the “90”. The dial is made up of three sub-dials and on the side of the case is two pushers and a crown. The watches are Master Chronometer Certified and offer a 50 hour power reserve. 

While Zenith have the fantastic El Primero movement behind their watches, Omega have the advantage of being Master Chronometer Certified, offering 15,000 gauss which offers a greater protection against magnetism and boasting their very own in-house materials, very much like Rolex’s Everose and Rolesor. 

We give this round again to Omega. 


Prices of Zenith vs Omega Watches


Zenith and Omega watches tend to be similar to a degree in terms of price ranges, allowing them both to be accessible to the modern consumer, but with models that are adventurous enough to be geared towards those with a few more coins to spare. 

You can choose from a number of Zenith’s collections and be more than satisfied with its pure luxury, materials and ground breaking materials! In particular, the Defy collection is the ultimate piece for any budding horologist. 

The collection’s prices move from around £6,000 to £160,000, depending on the model. The entry level timepiece is The Defy Revival A3642 which sells at retail for £6,100, while the most expensive Zenith watch is The Defy Double Tourbillon which sells for around £160,200 at the time of writing. 

Felipe Pantone Defy Double Tourbillon - Source - Christies

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However, they have some obscenely priced watches. Take for example the Felipe Pantone Defy Double Tourbillon Felipe Pantone. Released for Only Watch, this one off 46mm piece boasts rainbow PVD aesthetics, alongside a double tourbillon functionality within a sapphire case. It sold at Christie's auction in 2021 for £434,000. 

As we mentioned, Omega are pretty similar when it comes to their prices alongside Zenith. For their extremely popular Seamaster collection, for example, the prices are listed from around £3,000 to £145,000 at the time of writing. The cheapest Omega you can afford to buy is The Aqua Terra 150M. You can buy an Omega Aqua Terra 150M for around £3,100, while the most expensive is The Seamaster 42mm James Bond 60th Anniversary which comes in at £145,300. 

If you are opting to try and find an extortionately priced Omega, look no further than the very same watch that was owned by none other than the King himself, Elvis Presley. In 2018, the 18K white gold watch was presented to Elvis by RCA records in 1961 as an achievement celebrating 75 million records sold worldwide. Featuring a Tiffany and Co stamp, the watches were actually retailed by Tiffany and CO, highlighting the luxury and exclusivity of the pieces. The watch was sold in 2018 at a Philipps auction for around £1.4 million. 

Elvis Presley Omega - Source - Forbes

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Therefore, since both are similarly priced, both utilise great movements and materials, plus have the potential to increase in value…depending on the model. This will come down to numerous factors such as;

  • Condition of the watch
  • Provenance
  • Current market conditions
  • Rarity or exclusivity

We class this round a draw. 


Accuracy of Zenith vs Omega Watches


This may be the tightest round yet. As Sir Alex Ferguson declared during a press conference while in the midst of a nail biting title run in with Arsenal in 2003…it’s squeaky bum time!

El Primero Calibre - Source - Watches and Culture

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Zenith watches are exceptional in terms of their movements. It could easily be argued that they have released the most accurate column-wheel chronograph in all of horological history. This is known as the El Primero. The movement was so revered that even Rolex opted to adopt the movement during the Quartz Crisis in their Daytona collection

Operating at an average of 36,000VpH, they have some El Primero movements which have two escapements, one running at 36,000VpH, while the skips along merrily at 360,000VpH for chronograph functionality. That equates to approximately 1/100th of a second!

Omega has a fair claim when it comes to showcasing highly accurate luxury watches. For example a 47.7mm Omega calibre that offered a world precision record of 97.8 points out of 100 at the Kew observatory in 1936. And like Arsenal’s Invincibles team, this is still unbeaten to this day!

In the modern era, Omega has received Master Chronometer certification. Accurate up to 0/+5 seconds per day, these movements surpass standard COSC certification of -4/+6 as they combine it with a METAS check. 

Therefore, although Zenith has the phenomenally powerful El Primero movement, Omega also has Master Chronometer certification and a super history of delivering nothing but the finest accuracy. 

It's another mea culpa from us time peeps. We are going to have to say that this one is another draw.


Best Zenith and Omega Watches for Investment


The best Zenith and Omega watches that you should consider for investment are those that fall under the realms of being low in supply and high in demand. 

There are a number of Omega watches which fulfil the criteria of being low in supply and high in demand. This typically comes in terms of the watches being rarer and discontinued or holding distinguishing features like precious metal builds, vintage models or associations with Omega’s history that makes them so valuable. 

Speedmaster Broad Arrow - Source - Christie’s

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Take for example The Omega Speedmaster 2915-1 Broad Arrow. Crafted in a steel case and featuring a black dial with Broad Arrow hands, the 2915 reference is one of the early examples of the Speedmaster collection. 

As the first Speedmaster made, this timepiece holds the heritage as the start of the now iconic sports watch phase and is associated with the moon landing. Incorporating an innovative fixed tachymetric scale with the instantly recognizable Broad Arrow hands, the watch sold at a Christie's auction in 2018 for around £265,000. 

Mahatma Gandhi Silver PocketWatch - Source - Coronet

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Zenith similarly have watches which are steeped in horological history. Take for example the highly desired pocket alarm watch that was granted from Zenith to Gandhi. Worn by none other than the 3rd Prime-minister of India, Ghandi was renowned for his peaceful protests as well as pushing for equal rights and independence. 

The watch was sold at an Antiquorum auction alongside his sandals, bowl, plate and glasses for £1.7 million back in 2009. In the grand scheme of things, both Omega and Zenith have some astonishing models that are incredibly rare and can yield incredible figures upon resale. 

It’s too close to call. We deem this round to be…another tie. 


Which Zenith and Omega Watches Don't Hold Their Value?


While we mentioned both brands have the capability of being investment pieces when it comes to their rarer watches, they generally do not perform very well when it comes to holding their value among standard models. 

That being said, if you hold onto your models for a length of time, you may find that they have the potential to increase in value as they become rarer and supply less to the market. 

Nevertheless, every watch is not a guaranteed investment and will lose value. It’s understood that from the first year of owning an Omega watch, the value will drop around 23%. Compare this to other luxury makers like Breitling which lost 36% and Longines which depreciated around 35%.

Speedmaster 310. - Source - Brand’s Site

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The two key collections for investing in Omega watches are The Speedmaster and The Seamaster. The Speedmaster is a collection that is highly revered among the horological community. Introduced in 1957, the Speedmaster was famed for its tachymeter scale, chronograph dial structure and its incredible legacy as the first watch on the moon in 1969. That being said, they do not tend to hold their value following retail. 

Take for example the Speedmaster 310. Crafted out of steel and coming in at 42mm, you can buy an Omega Speedmaster at retail for £6,600 at the time of writing. It sells on the secondary market for around £4,500 at the time of writing. 

Seamaster - Source - Brand’s Site

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This continues onto the only other iconic collection which has the chance to yield good results as an investment piece. The diving inspired Seamaster is the ultimate piece for the nautical dwellers. Crafted out of steel and sized at 42mm, you can buy an Omega Seamaster retail for £5,600 at the time of writing. You can buy it on the secondary market for around £4,000. 


Best Omega Watches To Invest In

The best Omega watches to invest in are those that come from the Seamaster and Speedmaster collections. In particular, the limited edition variants are the ones to choose when finding a model that makes a solid investment piece. 

For example, you may find that The Speedmaster Calibre 321 Chronograph is the best piece for investment. Nicknamed “Ed White”, the watches were released to celebrate the iconic Calibre 321, the same movement that sent the watches up and into space. Capped at around 1000 to 2000 pieces per year, the watches sell at retail for £14,500, but it sells on the secondary market for around £16,000 at the time of writing. 

Another example is The Speedmaster Anniversary Series “Silver Snoopy Award''. Celebrating 50 years of the Silver Snoopy Award that Omega received from NASA astronauts in 1970 for contributions to space exploration and the Apollo 13 mission, the piece sells at retail for £10,000 at the time of writing. Yet, it sells on the secondary market for around £15,000.

This is precisely the same for Zenith. In their case, you can be expected to lose around 24% of value after the first year. This is technically lower than Omega, meaning they do yield better figures when it comes to resale. However, it’s still a loss in comparison with Patek Philippe which actually has the chance to increase by around 26% after the first year. 

Take a look at the Defy line which is highly respected. The Defy collection was released in 1969 and instantly became a trendsetting piece, primed for the luxury sports marketplace that would eventually boom under the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak and the Patek Philippe Nautilus during the 1970s. 

The Defy Skyline in steel with pink dial comes in the classic octagonal shape,  faceted bezel and integrated bezel. Featuring an Elite 670 movement, you can buy a Zenith Defy Skyline at retail for £7,500 at the time of writing. However, you can buy it on the secondary market for upwards of £6,000.


Defy Skyline - Source - Brand’s Site

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Another recognisable collection is the Chronomaster Sport. Showcasing the excellence of sporty horology, it is fairly new as it was only released in 2021, but its classical El Primero movement and fantastic tri-coloured sub dials are very innovative. In particular, The Chronomaster Sport 03.3100.3600/69.M3100 is a great representation from this particular catalogue. 

Chronomaster Sport - Source - Brand’s Site

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Crafted out of steel, boasting a black ceramic bezel and tri-coloured sub dials, they are all highly contrasted against the white dial face. You can buy a Zenith Chronomaster Sport at retail for £9,700 at the time of writing. It sells on the secondary market for upwards of £5,800. 

Therefore, both produce extremely reliable collections, with very strong heritages. However, we wouldn't expect to sell a watch from these with the intention of yielding a profit straight away. That can only be done over time and subject to the right model. That being said, hold on to them for a few years, study the markets and you may be in luck!

We declare this round to be another tie. 


5 Reasons to Buy A Zenith Watch

  1. Exceptional entry level pieces for the luxury market
  2. Home to the El Primero movement which is steeped in horological heritage as a movement that revolutionised the watchmaking world. 
  3. Adopting groundbreaking materials like chalcedony and ceramic to showcase their majestic pieces. 
  4. Highly distinct features like octagonal bezel and skeletonised dials
  5. One of the few luxury brands capable of running chronograph functionality at 360,000VpH. 


5 Reasons to Buy An Omega Watch

  1. Master Chronometer Certified, ensuring reliability and accuracy
  2. Cultural and historical lineage of putting the first watch on the moon thanks to the Speedmaster in 1969
  3. A wide variety of collections and iterations that span the diving, dress and sports sectors. Take for example The Aqua Terra collection which spans over 4 different materials and over 100 references!
  4. More affordable than other luxury brands like Audemars Piguet, Richard Mille and Rolex
  5. Omega are culturally popular, linking in with popular celebs and the James Bond franchise for over 60 years. 




Oh, Timelords. What a gory battle! Exposing the innard horological guts and exteriors of both brands, we have concisely examined several factors regarding accuracy, value and whether they are worth the investment. 

Like a Formula 1 engine, we have pushed matters to the very limit in determining a victor. We have been pushed to come to a final decision. And what do our scorecards read? The winner is…Omega…on points.

The Speedmaster’s landing on the moon undeniably represented a new dawn for horology, both on this land and on other celestial planes! It’s important to note that both brands are exceptionally active in releasing watches that push the envelope of Haute Horologie, all with a creative edge that not many brands can contend with. 

Sure, we pay all due respect to the El Primero movement that is the face behind Zenith. But the Speedy has literally been to the moon and back which puts this brand into cult status that not many brands can compete with. Nevertheless, both brands yield a clientbase that runs all industries, From Zenith’s creative buddies like Felipe Pantone and Carl Cox, to socialites like Will Ferrell and Zendaya, Omega are just as well connected, including fans like Daniel Craig, George Clooney and even royalty. Did you know that Prince William has sported the Omega Seamaster 300M! It was given as a gift from his Mother Princess Diana before she passed away due to a car crash in 1997 meaning it's of immense sentimental value, even if it’s one of the older models. 

Lucky for us Timelords, these watches are significantly more accessible than other brands like Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet. Plus we don’t have time to discuss the ins and out of the Rolex waitlist.

If you’ve been persuaded to get your hands on either brand or looking to sell a watch quickly and seamlessly, we recommend you finding the best and safest site around to dip your toes in the horological waters. Gentlemen, give us a second, and we will point you in the direction of Chrono Hunter.

Until next time…



Have we got you psyched up to buy a Zenith? Feeling a sudden urge to buy an Omega at the best possible price that will send your friends or colleagues to the moon and back? Get your hands on a timepiece via Chrono Hunter. We offer you the smartest way to buy a watch or sell a watch. Take only a few moments to contact us today and see why we are the number one source for those looking to buy a watch or sell a watch

Using our handpicked selection of experienced luxury watch retailers, we can ensure the best deals and get you the watch of your dreams in hours or less. With live offers coming in via our dedicated app, never get a raw deal again from public marketplaces or inaccurate valuations. 

Whether purchase or sale, Chrono Hunter offers the best possible purchasing and selling experience thanks to our number of retailers that offer the most competitive deals for your timepieces. 


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Further Reading: 

Match Time - Audemars Piguet v Breitling

MatchTime: IWC vs Jaeger-LeCoultre. Which Is The Best Watch Brand?


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