Watch Insider’s Top 10 Affordable Watches for Men

From my blog,, here is my list of the top 10 men’s watches that represent the most excellent value for price. There is a lot of discussion about what constitutes “affordable watches” and “affordable luxury” when it comes to top watch brands. For me, it means watches at around $5,000, from the best watch brands and other affordable brands that offer reasonably priced high-quality watches.

The top watch brands represented here are all well-known for their generally excellent affordable watch price-to-value ratio. (One of the most expensive watches on the list, the Tudor Heritage Chrono Blue, is priced at just $4,425.) Please note that I have chosen just one version of each affordable watch; most of the watches described here are, of course, available with different colored dials, bezels and types of bracelets. All of the watches on the list have steel cases. You can find more detailed information about nearly all these affordable watches — as well as many that are, shall we say, less affordable — at my blog. Keep in mind that this list will be updated throughout the year by WatchTime’s team. Thus it has already become a top 20+ list, and more top affordable watches will be added by the team soon. So please come back frequently and also share your own choices for best affordable watch brands and top affordable watches in the comments section at the end of this article.

Alpina Sailing Yacht Timer: The Alpina watch company, which stakes its reputation on making inexpensive watches with Swiss mechanical movements, has added an in-house regatta countdown module to an automatic Sellita SW 500. Excellent readability and top quality. The price: $4,129.

Alpina Sailing Yacht Timer
Top 10 affordable watches: Alpina Sailing Yacht Timer

Baume & Mercier Clifton GMT: The next recommendation on our top 10 affordable watches list. This is a fully functional GMT watch for traveling and/or displaying a second zone time; it is an attractive watch and equipped with an ETA 2893-3 caliber. The price: $3,000. (Click here to read more about the Clifton collection.) What is your opinion about Baume & Mercier? Would you include it on a list of the top watch brands that offer affordable watches?

Baume & Mercier Clifton GMT
Top 10 affordable watches: Baume & Mercier Clifton GMT

Frédérique Constant Slimline Manufacture Moonphase: A stunningly good-looking Swiss automatic watch with a classical moon-phase indication, equipped with the automatic in-house caliber FC-705. The price of $3,500 places it solidly in my ” top 10 affordable watches” category. More details here. Make sure to check out the full list of this company’s watches on WatchTime’s database where dozens of other watches are covered.

Frederique Constant Slimline Manufacture Moonphase
Top 10 affordable watches: Frederique Constant Slimline Moonphase
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  1. Megalith Watch

    Thanks for sharing this blog, I really appreciate your efforts put into this blog. It is very informative and knowledgeable.

  2. Muhammad Saeed

    Very nice article. I really liked this collection of watches. But these are not affordable watches.I hope you write an article on affordable watches soon! Thanks for sharing this awesome post.


    Beautiful stuff that I see here, I wonder how does one get to be in a chain

  4. Brian Sim

    Great service. Arrived within 30 minutes of calling, explained all of the costs so there was no surprise extra on the bill. A really good business with really good staff. I would highly recommend them.

  5. Brian Hartman

    I’m kind of new to the watch world, so I’m glad to hear that it’s not just me that can’t consider $5,000.00 “affordable”. :)

  6. One big problem. There are no affordable watches on your affordable watch list.

  7. Oswaldo Kerr

    Ich weis nicht was alle haben teuer teuer teuer. Qualität und 24std 365 Tage im Jahr erreichbarkeit hat eben sein preis. Ein soforteinsatz bei der Feuer kost 800€ wohlgemerkt auch bei Fehlalarm !!!

  8. Kathy craft

    I need a women’s large face elastic band quality yet affordable wrist watch – any suggestions?

  9. Tim Roberts

    I have two Baume et Mercier watches. Riviera Chrono MOA8724 and a Hampton 10032. Quality pieces. I also own Omega, Alpina, Cartier, Raymond Weil, Hamilton etc. B et M are designed and constructed with an attention to detail. You may not like the watch, but it will be well made, will impress and in the watch, world a good value. The new lines carry on that tradition at even more affordable prices. The Clifton’s are understated yet classy in my opinion, which is what draws me to BM pieces.

  10. Gill Bates

    They are affordable. But I won’t buy any. They’re all ugly.

  11. ИнтерДизайн

    Dear Alexander, i love those top ten list cause it gives me a new insight in this wonderfull watch world. I like the jlc, rolex and omega the most. Next time a submariner list? Maybe a list of best vintage watches? Regards.

  12. Alexander,

    Your list of affordable watches for men is sublime, I literally can’t fault your choices. Having said that, one does stand out and it`s not the most obvious one.

    Although you have the flash Tudor and the subtle Nomos Ahoi amongst the other beauties, my favorite from your list is the truly democratic and utilitarian Seiko DS Action Diver. From the brand that gives you everything for fraction of the cost of other brands, this is one brand that I have championed and continue to.

    Thanks for a really inspirational piece

  13. I understand the reactions about the expense of the Watches . But for some people its not only about the money but about the watch. How or Why you spend your money is nobody’s business. Some people spend money on travelling , and are left with memories and pictures. So what. There are hobby’s that are quit expensive and nobody seems to care about that. I get it that you think its crazy to spend money like that ‘or more ‘ on a watch but that doesnt mean you should react like people who do that are crazy. At least a watch keeps Some of its value so you can sell it if you want to.

  14. It’s new watches like these that are going to continue to change demand in the market. Blending classic and modern looks and keeping it affordable will surely decrease Apple watch sales. Thanks for sharing this list.

  15. I’ll just stick to my two tone La grande classique longines and titanium black face seiko dolce watch, thank you.

  16. ‘Affordable’ !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Either the dictionaries redefined the meaning while I was busy doing god knows what. Or you are just a jack-ass.Sorry man. Had to say it.

  17. I reckon it is a good list and expect Tudor BB would probably be one of them now too. The price range is quite spanned so would think on everyone’s wallet. It has given me some ideas . I intend to spend up to 3k $ and cant still make my mind:-) B&M Cliffton is very nice but not sure if for instance Tudor BB would not be a better buy. Nomos are great too.

  18. G. Homer

    Great list although it seems we may all have different ideas of what ‘affordable’ is. If you’re looking for a great affordable watch, check out Henry London. Their designs are inspired by a single vintage swiss watch meaning they all have an essence of a classic watch bought into their stylish modern designs. They also have a moonphase watching coming out in June 2016, similar to the Frédérique watch.

  19. John Ray

    Watches over $1000 can not be titled affordable. The list is great one. However I doubt how many can afford these? Rather I would pick 10 to 20 really affordable watches and flaunt a new one every day.

    • Yeah, that sounds like a good idea but most men are obsessed with luxury & expensive watches. The branded watches are really costly like Rolex, Tag Heuer, Ulysse Nardin and many more and definitely not affordable but still some men have a thing for it and prefer buying an expensive one. For instance, I also got an expensive limited edition Ulysse Nardin’s Santa Maria from timescape which everyone recognized and appreciated. So, there is a way of flaunting. It entirely depends on person to person. I might want to try your idea of buying affordable watches and to wear them everyday and lets see how that works for me :)

      • Hate to break it to you but “most men” don’t even wear a watch. If you really pay attention everywhere you go (apart from on television) the wristwatch is not on most men’s radar. After all, they have a phone to tell time.

        • Real men wear watches. Women look at you as a total Douche when you pull your phone out of your pocket to check the time.

          • No they don’t. 99% of them women won’t care or even remember whether or not you had a watch on.

  20. Ahh, so THAT’s what “affordable” means!

    Like a Porsche Boxster is an affordable car, because it costs much less than a Ferrari. Got it.

  21. Great list! The watches look good. However, Omega and Rolex should never be on a list that is called “affordable”
    Way to rub it in.

  22. If you’re blowing $4000 on an “affordable” watch you are doing it wrong.

  23. These watches are all nice, but maybe a little pricey for most people. There is a brand new watch brand out called Radii with swiss movement, sapphire crystal, and a stainless steel casing. All parts are really high quality for only $149. This is a great value at a low price point.

  24. Adrine

    I preferred Piaget than other because it’s a very good brand for men.

  25. Paul H

    I will stick with my MT-G and Rangeman ,will do everything and more than the above. I have had one G-shock 30years and never been in a jewellers ,come to think of it has not had many batteries either. I have had Seiko,citizen, Tag, Tissot, and others ,everyone broke down.

  26. Claus

    Nice watches. Now, when you say ‘affordable’ don’t say there is a debate about what affordable stands for, say something like ‘I am super pretentious and posh, so if you think affordable means cheap, go elsewhere, you are not my crowd.’ Affordable is around $5,000… wow, the world of bollocks you inhabit!

  27. e4jewelry casio watches

    Very nice collection of watches, I like the Tudor Heritage Chrono Blue watch the best because it looks quite unique compared to the rest.

  28. I have two of the watch on the list, the Swatch and the Tissot. Great watches for the price. Can’t afford a Patek Phillppe or A Lange & Söhne”. stick to what you can afford.

  29. Since when is a $4, 000 – $4, 500 USD range watch “affordable?” Sure it is “affordable,” affordable as in you could afford to do that if you had so much money that you couldn’t make up your mind as to whether to give it away to a charity or buy part of a car?

    • Glenn Charles

      e-Bay. However, the Rolex, Patek and some other names don’t tend to devalue as much (and some used Rolexes are worth more than the new AND watchmakers will tell you that even some modern Rolex parts are suspect*) but there are others like the Movado (from about 1950) I own or the almost unique Erbe (automatics, naturally) which were indeed affordable. Don’t hurry on e-Bay and follow the rules as to trusted sellers. Watches from Manila and the main seller there undoubtedly come from tourists (opinion only, having visited numerous times and having unsavory friends when young).

    • CometHunter

      Amen! These WT guys apparently haven’t heard of “living on a fixed income”. I’ve learned how to stretch a 99-cent box of Rice-A-Roni into 2 full meals. I can’t even afford to get the mechanicals (bought YEARS ago) I own now serviced, let alone buy anything new . Calling anything over $1,000 “affordable” must be some kind of cruel horological in-joke.

      • Well, if you are on a “fixed income” (a/k/a retired on Medicare) then you really should not be reading this site and engaged in watch collecting. I would think that most guys here are professionals gainfully employed with disposable incomes. In an age where a decent car costs $40K-$60K that may last for 10 years and cannot be passed on to your children a better investment is a quality watch (in the 5K-10K range) will last several lifetimes, if properly maintained.

    • Thank you! Upon what planet do these commenters dwell? If you’re a true collector and trader, then you may rise to the occasion and procure a watch that costs you 4 or 5 thousand dollars to add to the collection, but the thread here is irrelevant to most people, who may be obsessed with a particular timepiece so much as to spend up to 3 or 4 hundred dollars – not thousands. I wear a Seiko 5 Automatic, which as you know goes for under $100.

  30. Ahh ever heard of Christopher Ward? And why aren’t they featured on this list? Could be about time to actually research prior to posting articles.

  31. I was disappointed not to see Rado on the list. To my eye they make some of the most beautiful self winding watches around. I’m particularly drawn to their Ceramica line.

  32. Richard Andrew

    Though these watches may have been the matter of the desire for many, the reality is that the average person is not likely to have enough money to wear one in his lifetime. This is why a large number of people have preferred to purchase Replica watches instead.

  33. BreitlingOrGTFO

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Why is it men complain about the price of the one piece of jewelry that is acceptable for us to wear, and have function? We pay 10000 for a rock and give it to our lady. without thinking twice. Not a diamond on earth has contributed to saving a life, I might add. I think the time has come for that to be reciprocated. So. instead of settling for the cubic zarconia that would get you a permanent nights sleep on the couch if that was what you wife was wearing. We as men should stand up and request and engagement watch. We also spend 100 bucks easy on a night out drinking or watching the cubs lose. Aren\’t 30 nights out you don\’t remember, worth something you could pass on to the next generation?

    • Bob Cohn

      I’ve been bitten buy the collecting bug. Years ago (like 30) I liked Heuer watches, (before they were TAG Heuer), I bought 3 over a 10 yer period, all quartz. Now that I am more aware of the craftsmentship and long term value I’ve purchased other higher end pieces of jewelry…..Like Omega, Breitling, JagerLe Coutre, Panerai, B & R. All of these I plan on giving to my son and maybe his sin (when that hapens). Fine watches are a joy to wear, they have a function, and are pieces of art.I have given up a number of things I enjoyed to be able to purcahse thse watches.

    • Good comment unfortunately I won’t be passing my Rolex sub on as it was removed from me by some thugs , 10 years of hard saving and gone in seconds & insurance said jog on

  34. John smith

    An article on the best Swiss made watches with an automatic movement under $1000 would be great. I just picked up a Certina DS Action Diver that was south of $700, great watch for the money.

    • srhardy


      ISO DIVER CERT and for the $best-bang-for-buck option ive found under $1k!

  35. I enjoyed the article, I understand that $3000 is a lot of money to most people and doesn’t seem affordable. I have worked as a watch specialist for coming up to five years now I honestly believe longines hydroconquest is the best value for money swiss time piece on the market. You can pick them up with a plain classic dial for $1000. Extremely reliable watch and as long as you have the watch serviced every 3 – 4 years it will last you a lifetime. I would personally rather buy that than 2 or 3 $300 citizens or seikos over the next ten years.

    • the above brands you have mentioned are not affordable they are bit costly.. the list given by forbes
      is incomplete without raymond weil automatic . it is an outstanding watch i own a one and i have used it more than anything its performance has always been upto the mark. try this brand you surely will not be disappointed..

  36. Affordable ? Yes for a few of the readers, most no. While it’s nice to see and read about
    top quailty time pieces, most are out of price range for people earning less than 45.000 a
    year. There are hundreds of great watches under 2 grand that can be had without going
    into the red.

  37. Dave Arthur

    SEIKO SARB series, can’t beat em for looks, accuracy, price. Check out the COCKTAIL WATCH. Under 400 dollars. I have a few high dollar watches but I really love the SEIKO COCKTAIL WATCH SARB series watch.

  38. Affordable? WOW. I guess I am way out of my league when it comes to watches then.

    I’m currently looking for a nice self-wind automatic watch that sits under the $500 mark. Open face tourbillon (Should i get me coat now?) with a leather strap.

    I’ve seen a few on amazon such as Bulova’s, Sturhling and a nice giorgio Fedon 1912. I’ve even done the unthinkable and looked on a couple of Asian sites for them with some odd brand names. I just love the way they look and work.

    That said, being that what i’m looking for usually sits in the 10’s of thousands price range, would this mean that the ones I’ve been looking at to buy are a waste of time?; should i just stick to the run-of-mill quartz movement watch from a department store?

    I wait with bated breath for your reply. hahaha

  39. Dave Arthur

    I think the title is misleading. I think 5000 dollar watches are affordable for some but not most. I have a new Grand Seiko and a few older ones. I also have a Baume and Mercier chrono that I’ve had for about 40 years, it was my friends who bought it new in the fifties. The amazing thing to me is that one of the nicest watches I have was under 400 dollars, its called a SEIKO COCKTAIL WATCH. 23 jewel automatic with a stunning dial, accuracy on mine is about 3 seconds plus every 24 hours. Can be bought on AMAZON, check it out.

  40. Affordable? I understand that’s subjective and means different things to different people. For me affordable means 1,000.00 or under, closer to 500.00. My preference would be the Tissot Visodate or the Limes 112 Moderne or a bit pricier the Hamilton Jazzmaster series.

  41. Rochell Fitzmaurice

    Very nice post. I simply stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I am hoping you write again soon!

  42. Omega speedmaster professional!!!! Under £3000 for a hesilte and under 4k for a sapphire crystal new. Second hand prices under £4000 for ltd edition pieces. Its Classic, beautiful and was the first watch in space and on the moon.

  43. My opinion: With the exception of the Swatch, none of the watches on this list come anywhere close to being a good value unless purchased PRE-OWNED. With the possible exception of the Tudor, these should all be extremely soft on the resale/used market.

  44. I think this are indeed affordable watches for most pockets, nonetheless I think a top 10 budget watches list, should hold atleast a simpler longiness or even a classy (but affordable) raymond weill Maestro….I mean just because we wear budget watches does not mean we do not need to wear a suit a tie for work, and most of these watches are way to sporty to pull of with a blazer

  45. I’ve owned many beautiful (and expensive watches Breitling, Baume Mercier, Tag’s, Cartiers etc) Recently prurchased a beutiful Ball Watch Trainmaster Roman (crystal back, saphire, automatic) for abput 1,700 bucks and in my opinion represents a great value for a quality watch. I’ve also owned Brera watches (italian) which look great, Officina de Tempo (also Italian, very nice) and Luminox 3150 series which you can get with stainless steel band for around 400. Also Victorinox (Swiss Army) has some nice watches reasonably priced. Tissot makes nice watches although I don’t personally care for watch faces that are too busy. Citizen tends to overdo it. There are many nice Seiko’s for those looking for a decent watch for the money)

  46. Mike Kennedy

    I am very interested in trying to get a what I think is a high end watch around 800 to 1000. Does anyone on here have one they could spare for an up and coming business man. Thanks please email me at [email protected].

  47. I dropped my Rolex into the water when I was on my Yacht, and I recently had to buy another car for my wife so I’m glad I could find some affordable options to replace my watch!

    • Cameron

      Agreed. The SARB series of Seikos have value for monkey that the Swiss don’t have any more.

  48. Ben Clark

    Well one out of nine falling in to an affordable category does not a good article make. Anything more than $500 is moving in to high end territory, more than $1000 is not affordable for most people.

    • Yes, when organic butter is $6.00 US a pound, yes for someone putting down more than $500 is a lot of money now.

      This article is somewhat out of touch with reality in regards to the average person walking the street.

      Maybe it should be entitled “Most Affordable Watches for the Middle Class in Switzerland”.

  49. Great watches but I am afraid I wont be able to afford it ! ! I am planning to buy a watch from Skagen, any suggestions pls!!

    • I have had two Skagens. I initially purchased one because it looked like a very cool design, and the price was very, very reasonable (purchased online). The other one is chronograph watch which works fine.

  50. Affordable watches in my book arein the sub $500 category. For my money Fossil is a bargain brand. for $100 you can get a stylish watch that keeps accurate time for 10+ years. I own 3. As for the “better” brands I love Citizen, Tissot, Hamilton, Invicta, Oris, Tw Steel, and used a used Tag( which is possible, but hard to find for sub $500) I own a used Tag, Invicta, Citizen and Fossil.

  51. Affordable watches inn my book are sub $500 category. For my money Fossil is a bargain brand. for $100 you can get a stylish watch that keeps accurate time for 10+ years. I own 3. As for the “better” brands I love citizen, Tissot, Hamilton, Invicta, Oris, Tw Steel, and used a used Tag( which is possible, but hard to find for sub $500) I own a used Tag, Invicta, Citizen and Fossil.

  52. Noe Munoz

    I’m surprised there was no Invicta watch. The watches look really nice, much better than almost all of the watches you showed in my opinion, I like the Invicta diver pro series, some cost 400 but there are some under 100 and they look the same to me. If anyone is interested they cheapest dealer I’ve seen for Invicta watches is

    • It’s pretty much unanimously agreed upon that Invicta’s are to be avoided at all costs.

      • I’m not the watch aficionado that many of you may be, my questions are simple and direct not to be misconstrued as naive of foolish please! What’s wrong with Invicta watches? What brands under 500.00 would you recommend and why? I own an Invicta that I use for work purposes and it’s given me no issues looks nice and is very functional and sturdy. I work in the petrochemical industry and although my line of work itself is not “labor intensive” I’m typically in and out of the elements for the majority of the day/night. I am capable of purchasing any of the watches on this list, however I do not see the true need/value for a watch to cost that much (imo), again compared to many of you I’m am admitted novice when it comes to this.

      • I would also like to know what the issue is with Invicta’s. I just purchased one of the ‘signature II’ series and it looks and feels great to me.

        I’m guessing this is the wrong site for those of us who don’t earn a minimum of 6 figures.

        • I’ve been the jewelry industry for over 20 years and the past 10 or so have gained a real love for watches.

          The biggest issue with Invicta watches is when you have a problem with them. The past few years Invicta has become almost impossible to work with to the point where we no longer will do anything to them, even change a battery. This is due to the company being extremely difficult to work with WHEN the watch has problems.

  53. how will be the watch brands?
    1. brernherd h.mayer
    2. chairos
    3. j.r mayor watch brands

  54. Here is my top 10 list:
    1. Ulysse
    2. Breguet
    3. Patek
    4. Rolex
    5. AP
    6. IWC
    7. Cartier
    8. JL
    9. Omega
    10. Hublot

    Lucky to have 6/10 of these and working towards acquiring all.

    • How does your post apply to this other than you boasting about your fat wallet (or high credit card payments)?

      Or maybe you seemed to have posted within the wrong article.

  55. Joseph Young

    On dive watches rubber bands may be necessary, because salt water is corrosive, but rubber has never been and never will be a quality material. Rubber wears out quickly, looks cheap and makes one’s wrist perspire. To evaluate any manufactured product, one should probably ask a designer for assistance. Name brands don’t always live up to their hype, their price, their advertizing or their reputation. You must see things in person and you must touch them and look very carefully at the overall fit and finish. You’ll then see differences, but it takes a practiced eye and a lot of experience, because manufactured goods are multiples and thus are far different than one-of-a-kind oil paintings. There are very few things that come close to perfection, but certain watches, cameras and musical instruments are superb. Realize one thing, it takes far more advanced skills to design and build a high quality product to sell well at a low price than it does to make ridiculously expensive baubles only meant for extremely wealthy individuals.

  56. Joseph Young

    Mr. Linz, Why are you afraid to print my letter? I thought it was a fair evaluation of two interesting brands, Seiko and Tissot.

  57. Patrick warren

    A friend recently returned a Rolex perpetual oyster day date, 12 year old watch that cost 12k, damp had appeared under the glass, Rolex returned the watch saying the repair would be £4650 . I returned my 22 year old Casio 200m diving watch for new battery and waterproofing they returned the watch saying it was too old to repair as no new seals, but offered me a 50percent discount on any watch in their diving collection, with out hesitation I took them up on it, to my mind the best value watch there is

  58. Joseph Young

    I bought a heavy bulky Omega Flightmaster in Switzerland in 1972, and it’s seals disintegrated not long after I took it home. That mechanical watch would cost too much to repair today. I now wear a quartz Seiko with a brown face and strap that cost $140 and a beautiful quartz Tissot for $250 that has a cream color face that matches the color of the sails on my classic sailboat. Both are quite striking to look at. The pushers on the Tissot are of a higher machined quality than the Seiko, but the Seiko face is easier to read. Rolexes in 1972 were fairly reasonable. If you’re in the market for a quality Swiss timepiece, you should never overlook Tissots. If you want a lower priced watch, I would suggest Seikos. Rolexes should have the option of a skeletonized back for those who don’t or wouldn’t dive with them, their movements are so exquisite, they should be seen by the owner, not just the watch repair people.

    • Exactly! Not one of the watches mentioned falls into the “affordable” category.

  59. Raul Vazquez

    Is Oris under this category as a good affordable under budget watch? i bought one online, seems really nice, but its the second time i have to send it back for repair. The model is C3 Advanced Day Date Black Rubber Strap Watch. I am a little frustrated with this one. it falls under the 1000 usd category, and i never thought it would present a service failure. Compared to Oris, what other brand can be taken into account?

  60. The easiest way for someone to get into ownership of a luxury watch or fine watch is to call reputable jewelry stores. Another option is calling high end pawn shops that deal with luxury watches, estate jewelry, etc. These shops buy pre owned watches and typically have them properly cleaned and repaired (if necessary). For the buyer this means the opportunity to have a luxury watch for far less money than buying a new watch. If you take some time and stay in touch with 3-4 shops you will eventually find a great deal. Our store does this and it’s made a lot of customers happy throughout our time in business.

  61. Michael R.

    For me watches are functional pieces of art. The worth of a piece of art is what you are willing to pay. I have a collection of 25 watches and growing. When I see a watch that I like I must decide if I want it for my collection. Then I decide if the price is reasonable and can I presently afford to spend the money. As for watches that are good buys at or under $1000, there are more than I can possibly own. It’s all about deciding which watches are in my collection or out of my collection. I should add that any watch in my collection must be an automatic and it must be a reliable time keeper. Since we are discussing watches under $1000, pilot watches offer a wealth of pieces having a purity of design, classic looks, with excellent mechanics. Dive watches are another sub class, but for me the pilot watches are more compelling. Remember that for me watches are pieces of art so my preferences are not about which watches are better, but which watches speak to me.

  62. Doing some research before buying my first luxury watch – why is Cartier not on here . That was my favourite before reading this? Thanks.

  63. Doing some research before buying my first luxury watch – why is Cartier not on here . That was my favourite before reading this

  64. Matt J

    I bought the Tissot Squelette about 2 months ago before reading this article and I will admit that it is my favorite of all my watches… I have a 50th anniversary green bezel Rolex Submariner, 2 Breitlings and an Omega Seamaster and the Tissot still visually knocks them out of the park!
    I will say that I wish they made it automatic because I do have to wind it all the time whitch gets annoying but it wasn’t a deal breaker for me!
    Also if you shop around or pay with cash you can usually get the price down around $1500.00 instead of $1950.00… I paid out the door $1425.00 so remember the price he lists up there is a manufacturer suggested retail price, not it’s true value or end all be all price!

  65. CCN 1410

    Recently purchased a Citizen Eco-Drive – 10 ATM –
    Perpetual Calendar with sapphire crystal – Luminous hands – Insufficient Charge Warning for only $ 300.
    The watch is beautiful, practical and very good.

    If i were to buy an expensive watch about eight or ten thousand dollars, I would buy a Zeitwinkel 88º.

  66. HI
    In last year I bought anyhing from used Breitlings to Rolex watches most of which i sold as new and more exciting watches are coming out with bigger sizes, ceramic bezels and all blacked out watches.
    I managed to find some nice watches like Edox with ceramic bezel and automatic movement for $500 new.
    Montres De Luxe Thunderbird Chronograph with Valjoux 7750 for $1000 new
    Glycine Airman Chrono 08 very nice large watch on leather with 3 timezones. This one gets the most comments as it has 4 nice screwdown buttons.
    Perrelet Seacraft which is insanely finnished in steel and comes with the coolest box and for such a large watch wears very nicely and puts Omega and Rolex to shame with the quality of the steel.
    Another addition is Armand Nicolet S05 Chronograph ,which is vey interesting to say the least with very busy looking dial. I think my new fauvorite although quality is something to question.
    All these new and well under retail price due to economy in Europe I guess, but I love the whole underdog feel of those smaller companies.
    I would love to own a Rolex GMT with blue/black ceramic bezel which is well out of my price range.
    I do think that watch industry is getting a bit like buying a new car. You want that sporty yellow or red but end up buying grey due to resale value..

  67. Colin Agar-Rea

    Still nothing big, bold and interesting in there! I agree with the Oilers your research, search the web and if on a tight budget consider used options there’s plenty out there and some bargains to be had..Colin

  68. We live in different worlds. I get excited when I see articles titled “affordable”, “budget “, etc…. But I am always disappointed. Affordable price is relative I know. But I am in a different world unfortunately. My most expensive watch is $300. So all but one of your Watches are dreams for me. And I wonder what people are really saying when they say no watch under $1000 is a quality product. I have a couple of Orient Watches. Yes they are made in Japan, but are house movements and are accurate and they hold up well. To me that is quality. And for what you can buy them for is amazing. Maybe that is why people don’t take them seriously. I challenge you to buy one and check it out. Sure it is not a $3000 watch and not up to that same quality. But for money spent their quality is amazing.

    • But here is where you differentiate – you think in terms of value-for-money, which doesn’t exist for luxury watches (even in the affordable segment). A $50 Citizen quartz will keep time better than a Breguet, but you still would like a Breguet if you could afford one.

      • kjonyou

        The reason that guy is thinking in terms of Value for the Money is the title of the article, “Affordable Watch Brands”. If it was title ” High End Luxury Brand on a Budget” then it would not be so misleading.

        Statistically, most men do not spend more then $200 on a watch. That is the statistical average. So for the word budget to apply, it really would men less then that to the general public. For watch snobs of coarse, that is unthinkable.

        I also disagree with your assumption that everyone would want a Breguet if they could afford one. That is about as simplistic as saying everyone wants a gold plated Rolls Royce if they could afford one. Let me tell you I know half a dozen people in the financial success category none of which own anything fancier then a stock BMW. The richest one of them all sees that kind of spending as wasteful. He only buys used cars, shops at Costco and Target and his net worth is probably close to 100 Million range. I think he wears a Timex.

  69. Orient classic automatic

    Thanks for this post.Lovely design of watches.I have Hamilton Khaki Navy Sub Auto Chrono watch from this list.That one is amazing and the colour is awesome.

  70. Leo Sitorus

    My top watch brands are:
    1. PP
    2. AP
    3. Rolex
    4. JLC
    5. IWC
    6. Panerai
    7. Omega
    8. Breitling
    9. Tudor
    10. Longines

    The watch brands that I ever have are Rolex (5 pcs), Panerai (3 pcs), Breitling (1 pce), Tudor (1pce), Longines (1 pce).

  71. The best value Swiss Mechanical I have found is the Golana Advanced Pro 200. This watch is a stuuner.Very robust and heavy with the metal bracelet. Similar looks to Tag Carrera or Ball Storm Chaser.
    7750 all Swiss and cost me new £325.

  72. Virgil Howarth

    Hey how about the Omega Speedmaster Professional moon watch? Talk about a iconic watch, this is it. And it sells for about $3500. This is the same watch NASA still uses.

  73. George Michael. vlassis watches brands 1 zenith.2 perrelet3 omega 4 zeno 5 revue thommen 6..Maurice.lacxoix. 7 longines 8 raymond.weiil 9.edox10 ebel . Thanks . George from Sydney Australia

    • ioancio alex

      revue is my favourite too
      it is very underrated and it does not deserve it.
      It would be nice if the list contained 30 watches because the price range is very very competitive. Cheers

  74. I challenge you to find a cooler watch than the Alexander Shorokhoff Babylonian for $2650. Also Schaumburg Watch deserves a mention.

  75. Jonathan W. Fink

    Here’s my list of the top watch brands for the money:

    1. Zenith
    2. Omega
    3. Pre 2011 EBEL before they sold their proprietary movement
    4. Longines
    5. Grand Seiko
    6. Citizen Campanola/Signature
    7. Hamilton
    8. Seiko Premier
    9. Seiko/Citizen
    10. Casio
    10. Timex

    • I would add montblanc on that list now too. Their new watches especially there riussec line are beautiful and all in house movements.

  76. I agree with the list of 1000 but for the exorbitant prices of some watches, I would agree on a list of 2500. Sure it is still a high price for most people but few watches below 1000 are great in terms of quality. Maybe if we could base our list in the real cost of a watch, that would be a more realistic even if the sell price is 5 or 10 times more expensive.

    • Oilers Fan

      Really?? I can think of tons of great quality watches for under $1000. Maybe do a little research before such a bold statement.

  77. Randy Torres

    Nice list, but a shame the author showed his Euro-centric bias by leaving Seiko off the list. Seiko has several watches throughout its Seiko, Ananta and even Grand Seiko lines that meet the criteria of the article. And, unlike all but 2 or 3 watches on this list, all Seiko movements are in-house.

    The author makes a big deal of the Swatch System 51, but the Seiko 5 has been around for a very long time and some models can be bought for LESS than $100. Likewise, the author raves about the Oris Depth Gauge and while rightly so since it is a tremendous watch, compare and contrast with Seiko’s 130 Anniversary Ananta Diver. Yes, that watch is $1,000 more expensive but it is a chronograph and a limited edition work of art featuring hand painted lacquer dials by Isshu Tamura, who has done dials for Swiss makers like Bovet costing multiples of the Oris or the Ananta. The movement, in house of course, is Seiko’s superlative 8R39, no off the rack Valjoux 77xx here, which has, among other unique features, a column wheel and vertical clutch system, unlike the aforementioned Valjoux 77xx.

    At the end of the day there is nothing really wrong with Mr. Linz’s list as all the watches on it are excellent and any list of this type is subjective opinion. I would submit, however, that any article that lists watches that offer value for price and omits to include Seiko at the expense of an almost all Swiss line up (the German Nomos the lone exception), is glaringly incomplete.

    • D C Howard

      I agree totally, but my recently purchased “affordable” GS GMT does not live up to Seiko’s excellent reputation. Even Seiko don’t always get it right.

  78. Great article, but in a spirit of today’s economy it would be great to see some watches with bigger value and much nicer price. I love watches, but for four grand I’m looking for 30 years old Alpina… BMW!

  79. Jim Knotts

    I’m considering selling one of my watches to get one nice new one. It’s a 72 Rolex Daytona Choreograph…Paul Newman black face w/yyguwite complications. Any suggestions?


      This is a major iconic watch I would not part with, unless you desperately need food & shelter. Save your shekels until you have enough to get the new one you’re looking for.

  80. Bespoke

    Great selection and description Alexander.

    So much value to be found at all price points, nobody needs to feel disappointed looking at the big boys.

    The Oris and Tissot Squelette are compelling buys..

  81. angelo matto

    I agree with you but I would include the Tissot Navigator 160th anniversary. I really enjoy your article. Congratulations.

  82. tony waterman

    great article, its the nomos for me understated and elegant. Unfortunately its about $3000 to much for me. Agree with mark, a list of the top 10 for under a $1000.

  83. Fredric Ruvel

    The only one I would wear is the Baume Mercier. It is beautiful. Tudor has to prove itself.

    • Steve Thibeault

      Tudor is a well established Rolex brand. I don’t think that they need to prove themselves…

  84. Mark Elias

    I really enjoyed your article, “Watch Insider’s Top Ten Watch Brands,” and I would love to have every one of the examples you have mentioned. But how about a listing of the “ten must have watches under $1,000 USD for the rest of us.”

    It might be a challenge but I bet it would strike quite a chord!

    Thanks for your great articles.

    • sunil Mittal

      For value point of view,a watch under $1000, will be great.

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