With the holidays just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about the best gifts for your friends and family. What will you put under the tree this year? A fine watch makes the perfect gift for just about any man. In order to help you in your search, we’ve made a list of the best men’s watches for every budget.
We’ve attempted to pick a wide selection of different brands and styles to choose from. The possibilities out there are seemingly endless, and choosing just one watch can be tough, but that’s why we’ve thought it would be helpful to narrow things down a bit. Rest assured, you simply can’t go wrong with any of these five watches.
1. Best Watch Under 2,000 USD – Seiko SPB143J1
To start things off, we’ve chosen the Seiko SPB143J1 from the Seiko Prospex collection. This Seiko diver was introduced earlier this year and features a gray dial, black bezel, and stainless steel bracelet. The SPB143 is part of a new series of four watches that is known as the “1965 Diver’s Modern Re-Interpretation.
The four watches are modeled after Seiko’s first diving watch, the 62MAS, which was first introduced in 1965. Seeing as these are modern re-interpretations of that watch, they feature the same iconic look, but components are brought up to modern-day standards. The new SPB143 has a very wearable 40.5-mm case, making it well-suited for almost anyone’s wrist. The watch is powered by the automatic Seiko caliber 6R35, which comes with an impressive 70-hour power reserve.
With a list price of 1,250 EUR (approx. 1,500 USD), this Seiko SPB143 is a perfect daily wearer if you are looking for an awesome-looking modern sports watch with a story to match. If gray and black are not the right colors for the recipient you have in mind, you could opt for one of the other three color options: brown and gray (SPB145), brown and bronze (SPB147), or blue (SPB149).
Alternatives: Junghans Max Bill Automatic, Certina DS PH200M
2. Best Watch Under 3,500 USD – NOMOS Tangente Neomatik 39
For our next pick, we’re traveling to Glashütte, the German capital of watchmaking. Over the course of the last 30 years, NOMOS has become famous for its Bauhaus-inspired timepieces. We’ve chosen the NOMOS Tangente Neomatik 39 as our top pick under 3,500 USD.
The NOMOS Tangente is the brand’s most iconic series of watches. The collection is characterized by minimalist yet sophisticated designs that are inspired by the world-famous Bauhaus movement. The most iconic version of the Tangente Neomatik 39 comes with a characteristic 39-mm round case, white dial, iconic font, and blue hands. The watch is powered by the in-house NOMOS DUW 3001 automatic movement and comes on a black leather strap. It’s also worth checking out the versions with a blue or stunning silver dial if white is not your preferred color.
The Tangente Neomatik 39 is a very versatile choice. It has handsome good looks and a slim profile, making it the perfect dress watch, but it also makes a smart statement with more casual attire. The white-dialed Tangente Neomatik 39 has an official list price of 2,880 EUR (approx. 3,400 USD), making it our pick for the best gift under 3,500 USD.
Alternatives: Oris Divers Sixty-Five, Longines Heritage Classic
3. Best Watch Under 6,000 USD – Omega Speedmaster Professional
The Omega Speedmaster Professional, also known as the Moonwatch, is one of the most iconic watches ever created. The very first Speedmaster was introduced in 1957 as a racing chronograph, but on July 20th, 1969, the timepiece became the first watch on the Moon. It is without a doubt the best story ever connected to a watch.
The current Omega Speedmaster Professional is still very much the same watch that Buzz Aldrin wore when he set foot on the Moon. The biggest difference is the use of the Omega caliber 1861, a modernized version of previous movements. That being said, the watch still has the same iconic looks that make it one of the best chronographs ever created.
You should really consider buying an Omega Speedmaster Professional this year, because Omega will soon introduce a new, updated version of the watch. The new Moonwatch will feature an updated movement and some slight design tweaks, but the most important change is a jump in price that will probably see the Speedmaster Professional listed for more than 6,000 USD. If there were ever a right time to buy a Speedmaster Professional, it would be now.
4. Best Watch Under 8,500 USD – Grand Seiko SBGH277
Grand Seiko used to be known as the luxury line of Seiko watches, but it has more recently become a stand-alone brand. Grand Seiko watches are incredible high-end luxury timepieces that can compete with the very best in the industry.
Our top pick is the Grand Seiko SBGH277. This watch offers incredible value for money at roughly 7,300 USD. The stainless steel watch features a 40-mm case modeled after the iconic Grand Seiko 44GS that was introduced in 1967. The design concept of the 44GS-style case follows the principles laid out in Grand Seiko’s famous “Grammar of Design.”
A second iconic feature is the so-called Grand Seiko Hi-Beat movement, which offers greater accuracy due to a higher ticking speed. The Seiko caliber 9S85 runs at a speed of 36,000 vibrations per hour, delivering an incredible accuracy of +5 to –3 seconds a day.
The best thing about the Grand Seiko SBGH277, however, is its understated brilliance. You can wear it with a suit or casual attire and it will never be out of style. Best of all, only a true watch connoisseur will recognize the stunning watch you have on your wrist.
5. Best Watch Under 15,000 USD – Rolex GMT-Master II
The last watch on our list is a Rolex – it had to be a Rolex. Keep in mind, however, the availability of Rolex watches has become quite an issue all over the world. So be aware that the Rolex GMT-Master II we selected for this list might not be readily available at an authorized Rolex dealer.
The Rolex GMT-Master II is the brand’s famous Pan Am-inspired watch that features the option of displaying the time in different time zones. This so-called GMT function was especially handy for the Pan Am pilots the watch was originally developed for. The Pan Am connection also explains the iconic blue and red bezel, which has come to be known as the “Pepsi” bezel.
The current GMT-Master II is a perfect modern-day version of the watch that was first introduced in 1954. Today’s timepiece features a 40-mm stainless steel case with a blue and red ceramic bezel mounted on a great Jubilee bracelet. The watch features an outstanding modern Rolex movement, the Caliber 3285, which has a whopping 70-hour power reserve. The GMT-Master is one of Rolex’s biggest icons, and not without good reason; it is a stunning watch with a great practical function and iconic looks.