What are the best options for a watch budget between $500 and $1,000?

A WatchGang Guide For Buying Watches

In the market today, there is a large variety of watches which are available that fall within the $500 to $1000 price range. With all of these possible options, consumers often find it very difficult to narrow down which models are “the best” and worthy of a closer look. We’ve taken on the task of pulling a list of 12 great watches together within this budget, which are well built and include quality components that watch lovers look for. Please keep in mind, this is our attempt to provide a list and it may not necessarily represent everyone’s taste in watches, but it does represent a group of fantastic watches and there should be something in the group that will pique your interest.

Seiko Prospex SPB0079 - $850

This is the first Seiko watch on our list and one of the brand’s newer dive watch models. Seiko is known for making quality-built timepieces, with great components, great styling and great values – this watch is no exception. At just under $1000, the SPB0079 provides a professional grade dive watch, with a premium movement and quality components. This watch certainly punches way above its weight class. In addition to this model, there is also a black bezel version as well as a bracelet option.  
(Photo Credit: Seiko Watches)

Christopher Ward Trident Bronze Pro C60 - $910

Christopher Ward has been known for years as a brand that provides quality watches at reasonable pricing - The brand’s C60 line is no exception to this paradigm. With the flood of bronze watch models in the market, the Bronze Pro C60 is a fantastic example of a well-executed design, with its blue dial and solid bezel. Over time, this beauty will patina nicely and provide great variety to a collection as well as fill the bronze slot in your watch box.

(Photo Credit: Christopher Ward)

Halios Seaforth - $675

Ever since opening it’s doors, Halios has continued to have a ravenous fan base. The brand has been creating unique designs for years, and they sell out as fast as they can hit the online store. This is not by accident, their watches are very good quality and the brand is known for its great customer service. With, its latest watch model, the Seaforth, the brand has continued this tradition and it is perhaps Halios’ best watch to date – An affordable diver, with retro styling, a large variety of dial/bezel options and a great set of specifications.

(Photo Credit: Halios Watches)

Damasko DS30 - $976

Damasko is a brand that tends to fly under the radar of many collectors, which is pretty unfortunate. The brand makes bullet proof watches, with quality components and with great technological innovations built into them - The DS30 is a prime example of this. The D30 is built of submarine steel, which has been ice hardened, so that it is virtually impossible to scratch. This combined with it’s sapphire crystal, makes the watch a great choice for someone who needs a watch to go from the boardroom to the field.

(Photo Credit: longislandwatch.com)

Stowa Flieger Classic - $941

Stowa is yet another brand that often gets overlooked. However, this German based brand has been quietly been creating quality watches for almost a century. One of its most popular lines is it’s Flieger watches, which its been making since it was one of the original five authorized Baumuster B makers during World War 2. All Stowa watches are hand built as well as regulated and inspected by the owner prior to it being shipped out.

(Photo Credit: Stowa)

Weiss Standard Field Watch - $950

The Weiss Watch Company is one of a handful of brands that offers a timepiece hand built in the USA. In addition, each of their in-house movements are hand-finished and assembled in Los Angeles, California. The brand offers a single model, the Standard Issue Field Watch, in a variety of sizes, colors and price points. In the latest edition of the Standard Issue Field Watch, it has refined it’s his design to be thinner and even better for everyday wear.

(Photo Credit: Weiss Watch Company)

Marathon Search & Rescue Diver’s (TSAR) - $900

Since 1941, Marathon has been manufacturing timing instruments for the Allied Forces, and today they to provide a wide variety of durable timepieces for the US government as well as other countries. Marathon watches combine military durability with Swiss engineering and craftsmanship to ensure the highest level of quality and precision. The “TSAR” is a great example from the brand’s Search & Rescue line, with its tritium tube illumination and “tool diver” appearance. For those looking to add a bold looking, grab and go quartz diver to their collection, this may deserve a closer inspection.
(Photo Credit: Marathon Watches)

Seiko Prospex SBDC029 - $899

 This is the second Seiko on this list, and another great value. The SBDC029 is an updated version of the Seiko model referred to as the “Shogun”, which offers a full titanium case and bracelet, with have been specially hardened by Seiko using their Dia-Shield coating process. This is yet another great example of a watch that punches well above its weight class, with its quality components and fine finishing. The titanium makes it a great option for those with nickel allergies or those just looking for a full metal diver without all of the weight.

(Photo Credit: Gnomon Watches)

Deep Blue Deep Star 1000 Swiss Diver - $699

Deep blue has been providing affordably priced, good quality dive watches for over a decade. This approach not only applies to its entry level watches, it continues throughout the brand’s entire watch line. A great example of this is the Deep Star 1000 Swiss Diver. This vintage inspired diver includes quality components, including a Swiss Sellita automatic movement, sapphire crystals, ceramic bezel and a 300m depth rating – All for just under $700.

(Photo Credit: Deep Blue Watches)

Zelos Watches Swordfish 300M Diver – ETA 2892 - $549

Zelos is a newcomer to the watch industry but are beginning to be fairly well known for their well built watches and creative designs. Their latest diver design, the Swordfish, continues their use of angular shapes and bold design elements to develop a sleek looking diver. In addition to Zelos’ usual high-quality components, this “launch special” model also includes the well-respected ETA Caliber 2892.

(Photo Credit: Zelos Watches)

Martenero Kerrison - $595

Although there are many American watch micro brands out there, New York–based watchmaker Martenero sets itself apart with its playful-yet-handsome designs and use of mechanical movements. The Kerrison’s clean, balanced design comes alive through subtle details and uses of color. Everything is designed in-house, which creates a unique design and something different than what you typically see in the market.

(Photo Credit: Martenero Watches)

CWC Royal Navy Diver MK1 - $958

The CWC Royal Navy Diver has a history of being connected with the British military spanning back nearly half a century. The MK1 is an automatic version of the diver, which has slightly larger dimensions than the Navy issue quartz model, but it retains the same distinctive appearance as the original.  For many years, these divers have been gaining popularity amongst collectors and military buffs alike, take a closer look and you will see why.

(Photo Credit: CWC Watch)

Carpenter Brooklyn Field - $595

Here is yet another US based watch brand in the list. Carpenter is a relatively new company to the market, but they are hugely popular. Their initial designs are focused on field watches and their models come in several different case diameters, case finishes and movement selections. These options, combined with the other quality finishing’s, combine to create a fantastic looking traditional field watch.

(Photo Credit: Carpenter Watches)

Fortis B-42 Official Cosmonauts - $895

The B-42 has been a staple in the Fortis line for many years and there is a reason for that – It is a well built watch, with good components, at a great price. The B-42 Official Cosmonauts featured here runs on an ETA 2836 movement and comes with a bracelet, and can be found for just under $900. This is one is well worth the price of admission and comes from a brand that is sure to be around for years to come.

(Photo Credit: Jomashop.com)

Junghans Max Bill - $995

To round off the list, we will end with a classic – The Junghans Max Bill. This Bauhaus inspired automatic watch boasts a meager 10mm case and a vintage inspired design. It can easily be worn in most any situation, with a suit all the way down to your favorite pair of jeans. If you are looking for a watch that will more than likely withstand the test of time, this one is it.

(Photo Credit: Junghans Watches USA)

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