Abdullah Chang, Author at Exquisite Timepieces
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Best Seiko Tuna Watches

While tuna might hold the record for being the world’s most consumed fish, I can understand why the general population might be hesitant to wear a watch called the Seiko ‘Tuna’ on their wrists. It’s not necessarily the most appealing nickname for a timepiece.

In this article, I want to check out some of the popular Seiko Tunas from the brand’s catalog. I’ll also briefly introduce the world of the Tuna and understand the differences between the MANY variations offered.

What’s So Special about the Seiko Tuna

The Tuna’s history is one of the most impressive yet overlooked within Seiko’s dive watch offerings. The Tuna dive series was introduced in 1975 and has been improving in terms of specifications throughout the years. Seiko has created dive watches since 1965. However, it all changed when the company received a letter from a professional saturation diver from Kure City in Japan.

According to him, several Seiko divers’ watches faced problems with retaining Helium gas, which would increase the inner pressure and pop the crystal, destroying the timepiece. From then on, Ikuo Tokunaga and his team of engineers sought to create the ultimate professional dive watch. Thus, the Tuna design was born. What makes the Tuna iconic is its shrouded case design.

This unconventional design feature was Seiko’s answer to the Helium Escape Valve (which helps prevent the watch from enduring damage during saturation diving, specifically by allowing helium gas to escape during the decompression process). Instead of including a Helium Escape Valve, Seiko invented a new case shape, which, combined with its L-type gasket, made for an almost impenetrable watch.

Why Is It Called ‘Tuna’?

The Tuna is just a nickname adopted by Seiko enthusiasts on a forum back when the internet was still in its infancy. This nickname has little to do with any overlaps in the characteristics between the fish and the actual watches but was instead inspired by the case design that resembled an open tuna can.

Differences between the Seiko Tuna Models

Seiko has released several variations of Tunas since its first release in 1975. You’d be surprised to discover the sheer number of differences that watches within the same design family can have between them.
With variations between different case dimensions, colorways, materials, straps, water resistance, movements, and prices, the options are truly endless! But one thing is for sure – there’s a Tuna for everyone!

General things to know about the Seiko Tuna

  1. Like the nickname ‘Tuna’, several other nicknames are given to certain models (e.g., Baby Tuna, Darth Tuna, Emperor Tuna, etc.). All of these adopted aliases are based on specific characteristics of the models in question.
  2. Unlike traditional divers, the Tuna watches wear much smaller than the case size would suggest. This is due to the nearly non-existent lugs that inevitably result in the timepiece having an overly rounded case format.
  3. All the Tuna models come with protective shrouds on the case, which are constructed with different materials for different models.
  4. The Tuna falls under Seiko’s Prospex (Professional Specifications) line, with many models also falling within the Marinemaster collection. As a result, you can find a wide range of water resistance within the Tuna line, starting at 200 m and going up to a whopping 1000 m.
  5. As capable divers, all the modern Tuna models come with unidirectional bezels, screw-down crowns, and one of the best lume applications in the watch industry – Lumibrite!

Popular Seiko Tuna Watches From The Past

Since the first ever Seiko Tuna in 1975, the collection has had several different iterations, each being unique in its own way. Several models, in particular, are very rare and thus coveted by collectors. Here are some of the most popular and sought-after Tuna references from the past:

The “Grandfather Tuna” ref. 6159-7010

The “Grandfather Tuna” ref. 6159-7010

The first ever Seiko Tuna was released in 1975 and has since been dubbed the “Grandfather Tuna”. The ref. 6159-7010 was a big and bulky dive watch made to withstand the harshest conditions. It featured over 20 patents and is one of the few Tunas powered by a mechanical movement, the caliber 6159.

Due to its unique nature, the Grandfather Tuna remains one of the market’s most expensive and highly collectible Tunas. To celebrate its 25th anniversary, Seiko released the SBDX005 in 2000, a watch that was limited to 1000 pieces and shared many design philosophies with the Grandfather.

The “Golden Tuna” ref. 7549-7009

The “Golden Tuna” ref. 7549-7009

The “Golden Tuna” family was the second generation of the Seiko Tuna. The first Golden Tuna (ref. 7549-7009) was released in 1978 and got its nickname from its nitride-plated titanium case that had a distinct gold color. The watch was also slightly smaller than the Grandfather and featured a quartz movement instead of a mechanical one.

There have been several Golden Tuna references throughout the decades; however, the original remains one of the most collectible ones. Its desirability is further aided by its brief appearance in the 1981 James Bond movie “For Your Eyes Only”.

The Seiko “Arnie” ref. H558-5000

The Seiko “Arnie” ref. H558-5000

Another movie icon and a unique timepiece is the Seiko Tuna ref. H558-5000, mostly known as the “Arnie” or “Arnold”. The watch got its nickname from famous actor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who used to wear several versions of this watch in some of his popular movies.

This particular Seiko watch features the Tuna case design, albeit in a smaller frame of about 45mm. However, it’s still a large watch that can withstand almost anything you throw at it. What makes it stand out, though, is its unique Ana-Digi layout, with an analog dial and a small LCD on the top that displays the day and date.

The Best Seiko Tuna Watches You Can Buy Today

Seiko SUT403P1

Seiko SUT403P1

The SUT403P1 is the perfect gateway into the Tuna line-up, offered in one of the smaller case sizes within the Tuna design format. This model is part of Seiko’s new ‘Street Series’, which is a bit more experimental and playful with colorways and dial textures than the traditional Tunas. 

The Seiko ‘Street Series’ is a relatively recent collection within the Prospex line that re-introduces the Tuna’s popular case design, making it fancier. With a fully stainless-steel case that comes in at just under 40 mm, V131 solar-powered movement, along with 200 m of water resistance, this is truly a value-packed ‘Mini Tuna’.

It’s also much more versatile than the traditional Tuna because of its smaller case size and dark blue and beige colors. When paired with a smart-casual outfit, these features present the option to be dressed up without looking out of place.

  • Movement: Solar V131 (6 months battery when fully charged)
  • Water resistance: 200 m / 660 ft
  • Diameter: 38.7 mm
  • Crystal: Hardlex
  • Price: $500

Seiko SNE547P1

Seiko SNE547P1

The SNE547P1 is another Tuna model from the brand’s recent “Street Series” collection. It comes in a black and forest-green colorway, combined with orange accents on the second hand, crown, and under the bezel insert. Like SUT403P1, this model has also considered a gateway into the Street Series ‘Safari Edition’. However, there are a few key differences between both these models.

Unlike the V131 caliber housed within the SUT403P1, this watch houses the V157 solar-powered movement, which comes with an impressive 10 months of power reserve when fully charged. It also features a date window at 4 o’clock and wears much larger with a 46.7 mm case diameter and a height of 12.6 mm.

  • Movement: Solar V157 (10 months battery when fully charged)
  • Water resistance: 200 m / 660 ft
  • Diameter: 46.7 mm
  • Crystal: Hardlex
  • Price: $500

Seiko SRPE29J1

Seiko SRPE29J1

Alternatively, you could also go with the SRPE29J1. This time, the watch comes with mostly beige elements combined with black accents. Unlike the solar-powered movements seen in the previous two models, the SRPE29J1 is powered by the in-house automatic caliber 4R36, which is considered a solid, workhorse movement.

This model also comes with a stainless-steel case with a hard coating, making it highly durable and offering a more premium feel. This is a great, attainable model with a mechanical movement within the Street Series. Combined with Seiko’s very own Hardlex crystal (which is more robust than the traditional mineral crystal) and the hard coating on the stainless-steel case, you can wear this as a daily watch without worrying about scratching the case.

  • Movement: Automatic 4R36 (with approx. 41 hrs of power reserve)
  • Water resistance: 200 m / 660 ft
  • Diameter: 43.2 mm
  • Crystal: Hardlex
  • Price: $550

Seiko SRPH77

Seiko SRPH77

While the Seiko ‘Tuna’ has traditionally been less ‘explorative’ with its dial (to maximize clarity), Seiko has broken that general ‘rule’ by giving us a taste of its legendary dial-finishing techniques in this SRPH77 Special Edition. According to Seiko, this release is a tribute to the brand’s ‘Save the Ocean’ initiative, which aims to assist with environmental research and ocean conservation.

The finishing on the dial resembles the deep blue ocean, achieved through a gradient blue color with brushed strokes. The swimming penguins on the dial act as a subtle yet clever nod to the brand’s environmental initiative.

Whether it’s the radially engraved stainless-steel bezel or the impressive finishing on the dial, the details on this watch make it appear and feel significantly more premium than its price would suggest, making it a worthy contender to consider.

  • Movement: Automatic 4R35 (approx. 41 hours of power reserve)
  • Water resistance: 200 m / 660 ft
  • Diameter: 43.2 mm
  • Crystal: Hardlex
  • Price: $550

Seiko S23633

Seiko S23633

The S23633 is a mid-sized, no-nonsense Seiko ‘Tuna’, featuring professional-grade specifications. Coming in with a stainless-steel case size of 47.7 mm, with added super hard coating for additional durability, the S23633 is undoubtedly a robust ‘mid-sized’ offering within the Tuna line.

Inside the tough, shrouded case, you have Seiko’s in-house quartz caliber 7C46 with an accuracy of +/- 15 seconds per month and an impressive 5-year battery life, making this a perfect ‘wear and forget’ type of watch.

But with features like the 300 m / 1000 ft of water resistance and a sapphire crystal (with inner reflective coating), this model is well-suited for someone looking for a serious dive watch but without exorbitant wrist presence.

  • Movement: Quartz 7C46 (high-torque caliber)
  • Water resistance: 300 m / 1000 ft
  • Diameter: 47.7 mm
  • Crystal: Sapphire
  • Price: approx. $1,800 (GPB 1,500)

Seiko SBBN047

Seiko SBBN047

The SBBN047 (also known as S23631) offers all of the professional Prospex diver specifications but in an extremely lightweight one-piece case structure. This model is dubbed the ‘Darth Tuna’ because of its monochromatic appearance, which gives it a stealthy look. It is on the larger side with a 49.4 mm case diameter. But, thanks to the Tuna design format with nearly non-existent lugs, the watch wears much smaller and will easily fit most wrists.

This is a professional Tuna, capable of 1000 m / 3300 ft of saturation diving, and comes in a titanium inner case and ceramic shroud that’s treated with Seiko’s proprietary Dia-shield hard coating, which provides additional scratch resistance and durability to the DLC-coated case. This is undoubtedly one of the most popular and collectible Tunas. Unfortunately, as it is a JDM model (and a highly coveted one at that), it’s not the easiest to get hold of.

  • Movement: 7C46 (high-torque quartz)
  • Water resistance: 1000 m / 3300 ft
  • Diameter: 49.4 mm
  • Crystal: Sapphire
  • Price: $1,800-$2,000

Seiko S23635

Seiko S23635

In 2021, Seiko released the S23635, a special watch to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the 1986 Quartz Diver. The S2365 is part of Seiko’s Limited Edition release, celebrating a landmark technological achievement of the 1986 release.

The 1986 Quartz Diver combined the Tuna’s original design format with 1000 m of water resistance and a ground-breaking quartz movement. This unique combination of highly advanced technologies (of the time) resulted in the birth of the new and improved Tuna, which was much more robust and accurate than the original Tuna.

The S2365 was limited to only 1200 pieces at the time of its release. The watch comes with a beautiful gradient blue dial, mimicking the ocean’s depth (i.e. darker at the bottom and lighter at the top). The case is constructed with a titanium inner case and a ceramic protective shroud on the outside and comes with two pairs of extra-strength silicone straps, which provide additional durability for deep-dive expeditions.

  • Movement: 7C46 (high-torque quartz)
  • Water resistance: 1000 m / 3300 ft (saturation diving)
  • Diameter: 49.4 mm
  • Crystal: Sapphire
  • Price: $2,600

Seiko SBDX014

Seiko SBDX014

If you want to go all out with the optimum specifications, you can get within the Seiko Prospex ‘Tuna’ family, go for the SBDX014, also known by its notorious nickname… the ‘Emperor Tuna’.

With the SBDX014, you’re getting a titanium shroud with a rose gold-plated ceramic case and an outstanding water resistance of 1000 m. However, this Marine Master comes in at a larger case of 52.4 mm diameter and a height of 17.2 mm, making this one of the largest offerings within the ‘Tuna’ lineup.

The rose gold-plated inner ceramic case, crown, and screws give this model a more premium look, not a common feature ordinarily seen in the Seiko Tuna models. This fan-favorite JDM model is priced at JPY 350,000 on Seiko Japan’s website (approx. $2600 today).

  • Movement: Automatic 8L35 (approx. 50 hours of power reserve)
  • Water resistance: 1000 m / 3300 ft
  • Diameter: 52.4 mm
  • Crystal: Sapphire
  • Price: approx. $2600 (JPY 350,000)
patek philippe nautilus

If ‘Nautilus’ is the first word that comes to mind when you hear Patek Philippe, join the club. For several years now, the iconic luxury sports timepiece from the 70s has been the ultimate grail watch for nearly every ambitious individual.

But before we put on our detective hats to figure out why exactly the Nautilus, of all Patek Philippe models, is more desirable to the high-end collector than a chewy treat is to my cat, we first need to learn about the brand itself.

History of the Patek Philippe Nautilus

Patek Philippe Nautilus

Founded in 1839, Patek Philippe is one of the last family-owned, independent watchmakers in Geneva, with an uninterrupted watchmaking history of nearly two centuries. Being one of the oldest Swiss watch manufacturers, the brand has made significant contributions to the modern world of horology.

Patek Philippe is considered the master of ‘Supercomplications’, a reputation the brand acquired by being one of the earliest pioneers of both the Perpetual Calendar mechanism and the Annual Calendar on a wristwatch. And in 1976, the brand released its first luxury sports watch, which is still considered the upper echelon of luxury in the watch world. 

Why Was the Nautilus Created?

The quartz crisis of the 70s made it crucial for the Swiss watch industry’s survival to get on board with the revolutionary quartz technology. This was due to the fact that a quartz movement proved not only more affordable to produce, but also much more accurate and robust than the comparatively-delicate mechanical movement.

The Swiss luxury watch brands had a difficult choice: either change their long-standing approach to masterfully-crafted mechanical watchmaking or take a massive risk by doing something that hadn’t been done before (except by AP). But just like Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe went with the second option.

At a time when luxury watches were constructed exclusively with precious metals, the brand introduced a luxury timepiece made entirely of stainless steel, a move that was initially seen as an absurd oxymoron. Following AP’s footsteps, Patek hired the young Gerald Genta to design this relatively new concept. And thus, the iconic Nautilus was born.

Design Inspiration of the Nautilus

Patek Philippe Nautilus 2

It’s true that a designer’s mind never rests. As the story goes, while dining with Henry and Philipe Sterns from Patek Philippe, Genta brainstormed and produced a napkin sketch. The sketch of this watch featured a case design inspired by the porthole window of a transatlantic liner and ‘ears’ influenced by the hinges of those portholes.

The five-minute doodle on this napkin would go on to be the blueprint of one of the most important watches the brand ever produced. Apart from the iconic case and dial, the Nautilus would also feature an integrated bracelet, a trending feature at the time.

Although the collector community loves to compare the Nautilus with AP’s Royal Oak, these two were created with different inspirations behind their iconic designs. While the Royal Oak has a ‘brutalist’ design with an industrial look, the Nautilus is seen as the more refined of the two, with a rounded octagonal bezel.

Facts to Know About the Nautilus


All the Nautilus references come in a rounded case shape, with the iconic ‘ears’ on two sides of the case. The watches are constructed with various case materials (such as stainless steel, gold, and two-tone), dial configurations, movements, bracelet options, and complications.

While some models feature a monobloc case construction, most modern variants are manufactured using a 3-part case construction (although, the latest ref-5811/1A has returned to an upgraded version of the monobloc case).


The Nautilus wouldn’t be a Patek Philippe without the brand showing off some of its technical superiority in its most sought-after collection.  Apart from the standard Time and Date featured in all Nautilus references, you’ll also find numerous complications such as Chronograph, Moonphase, Annual Calendar, and Perpetual Calendar on the brand’s more sophisticated models.

Water Resistance

Designed as a luxury sports watch with water resistance ranging from 60m to 120m, the Nautilus is well-equipped with features that position it as an excellent, versatile timepiece for daily activities.

In today’s context, I consider it more of a luxury everyday-style watch than a true sports watch. Typically, the dressier and more complicated models, like the Grand Complication, will provide lesser water resistance than the regular time/date models.


Pricing any Nautilus can get tricky, as the difference between the retail and the secondary market price is colossal. The main reason for this is that the brand’s supply cannot keep up with the demand, causing a waitlist system to be implemented that many collectors may not feel keen about. Thus, it’s not ordinary to see a Nautilus sell several times over its retail price in the gray market.

Notable Patek Philippe Nautilus Models You Should Know

By no means is this a definitive list of all Patek Nautilus models. But I chose these fifteen models to showcase the different styles, materials, dial configurations, movements, and functions that can be found within the Nautilus lineup.

I also grouped these models into three categories for the sake of an easy understanding of the numerous variants that can be found within the Nautilus family. These categories are:

  • Classic Nautilus (Time & Date)
  • Complications
  • Ladies Collection

Classic Nautilus

1. Nautilus 3700/1A

Nautilus 3700/1A

The Patek Philippe Nautilus 3700/1A, released in 1976, was an elegant, yet sporty luxury watch, produced by a brand mostly known for manufacturing the world’s best complicated timepieces. The timepiece was constructed from a 42mm monobloc stainless steel case with a slim height of 7.6mm and a straight, integrated bracelet with polished center links.

The monobloc case was a patented design that enabled the watch to have 120m of water resistance, thanks to a gasket underneath its bezel. Apart from the iconic case design, the dark blue dial with horizontal grooved lines popped as the only contrasting element on a monochromatic timepiece.

The ultra-thin movement inside this watch was the caliber 28-255 C. Although this movement was supplied by Jaeger-LeCoultre, it was modified by Patek Philippe and featured Patek’s proprietary Gyromax balance wheel.

This movement ticked at a beat frequency of 19,800 VPH and had a 40-hour power reserve. The 3700/1A is still considered by many as the most important Nautilus, as it paved the way for future variants. Not to mention helping the brand stay relevant during difficult times.

The watch retailed at approximately $3,100 at the time of its release.

2. Nautilus 5711/1A-010

Nautilus 5711/1A-010

While this wasn’t the first Nautilus, something about the 5711/1A made it an absolute legend within the high-end collector’s sphere. Released during the 30th anniversary of the Nautilus, this relatively-uncomplicated watch somehow became more desirable than most of the brand’s notable offerings.

While closely resembling the 3700/1A in its dial color, there were some significant differences between the two. Compared to the original ‘Jumbo’, the 5711 came in a wrist-friendly size of 40mm stainless steel case, with a case height of 8.3mm and 120m of water resistance.

Housed within the case was the in-house caliber 324 S C, which offered an improved power reserve of 45 hours while beating at a higher frequency of 28,800 vibrations per hour, but also featured a 24k gold rotor with Côtes de Genève decoration.

Not to mention that technological innovations, such as the Gyromax balance wheel and the Spiromax balance spring, meant that the performance of the 5711 was superior to that of its predecessor. 

The 5711/1A retailed at approximately $25,000 at the time of its release.

3. Nautilus 5711/1A-014

Nautilus 5711/1A-014

The Patek Philippe Nautilus 5711/1A-014 came out not long after the official discontinuation of the 5711/1A. And although it lived a surprisingly short production run, it was successful in boosting the trend of green dials on wristwatches.

Unfortunately for die-hard fans unable to acquire this model during its tremendously fruitful period, Patek Philippe no longer produces this reference, along with any other 5711 model. The watch came in a 40mm stainless steel case, with 8.3mm thickness and a green dial unique to the Nautilus family, making this a truly rare timepiece.

The movement used was Patek’s latest in-house Caliber 26-330 S C, also utilized in the newer Nautilus 5811 model. This updated movement, replacing the 324 S C, beats at 28,800 VPH with up to 45 hours of power reserve and features both the Gyromax balance wheel and Spiromax balance spring.

Although the watch retailed at approximately $35,000, one factory-sealed piece was sold at an auction in Monaco for a dizzying price of $470,000.

4. Nautilus 5711/1A-018

Nautilus 5711/1A-018

Yes, you knew this was coming! If you thought the green Nautilus was a shock to the watch world, its hype was nothing compared to the ‘Tiffany Blue’ reference, released by the end of 2021.

As jaw-dropping as it was, the $6.5 million that one of these sold for at Philip’s auction wasn’t too surprising, considering that this was not just the final rendition of the legendary 5711, but was also a double-signed dial with an extremely limited release of just 170 pieces. It doesn’t get any rarer than this!

The watch was presented in a 40mm steel case, with a thickness of 8.3mm and 120m of water resistance. The manufacture caliber 26-330 S C could be seen through the exhibition caseback, along with a few other details that were exclusive to this piece. These included the sapphire caseback text highlighting the partnership between the two brands.

This 170th Anniversary model, commemorating the 170 years of partnership between Tiffany and Patek, retailed at $53,000 and was exclusively available at the Tiffany & Co. boutiques in New York, San Francisco, and Beverly Hills.

5. Nautilus 5811/1G-001

Nautilus 5811/1G-001

After the Nautilus 5711/1A was officially discontinued, the brand released the 5811/1G-001 as the ‘new and improved’ flagship Nautilus as a replacement for the 5711.

This new 2022 model is constructed of a two-part, 41mm white gold case instead of the smaller stainless steel case used in the 5711. However, it maintains a case height of 8.3mm and 120m water resistance. The 5811/1G fashions a sunburst blue-black dial with a centric gradient effect and white gold applied indices and handset.

Additionally, the watch features an improved bracelet with a patented fold-over clasp with micro-adjustments, enhancing the wearing experience. The decorated movement, displayed through the sapphire caseback, is the latest manufacture caliber 26-330 S C, which beats at 28,800 VPH, giving the watch up to 45 hours of power reserve and smooth sweeping seconds hand.

Considering the never-ending demand, along with the updated design and specifications, the $69,790 retail price for this watch doesn’t seem unreasonable for what’s being offered in terms of improved technical specifications and design.

6. Nautilus 5711/1P-011

Nautilus 5711/1P-011

In 2016, during the 40th Anniversary of the Nautilus, Patek released a 5711 made entirely of platinum, and the watch community’s reaction was… mixed.

While, unsurprisingly, several ecstatic collectors competed to get one in their collection, others could not get over the bold “40 1976-2016” text on the dark blue dial (although it’s said to be much more subtle in the flesh than what the press photos indicate). 

The 40mm case was made up of solid platinum 950, had a thickness of 8.3mm, and water resistance of 120m, making it another elegant yet sports-capable timepiece. 

The sunburst gradient blue dial, slightly brighter than the standard 5711/1A, featured baguette diamond indices, adding to the platinum watch’s luxurious feel. Similar to the standard 5711, this watch featured the beautifully decorated in-house caliber 324 S C and provided 40 hours of power reserve while beating at 28,800 VPH.

With subtle details that separated it from the standard steel Nautilus, along with being limited to only 700 pieces and a stomach-churning retail price of approximately $113,000 (at the time of release), this watch was a true understated ‘flex’ to own.

7. Nautilus 5719/10G-010

Nautilus 5719/10G-010

There aren’t many watches that have the potential to make the standard 5711 look like a poor man’s Patek. However, the fully diamond-covered 5719/10G-010 does just that!

The watch comes in a 40mm white gold case, a slightly thicker case height of 8.7mm, 120m of water resistance, and the automatic caliber 26-330 S C beating inside. The movement provides 28,800 vibrations per hour (4Hz) and 45 hours of power reserve.

A total of 1,343 flawless diamonds are set by hand on this timepiece (strictly complying with Patek Philippe’s Seal’s stringent requirements). Just to give an idea, the breakdown of these gemstones is as follows:

255 diamonds and 3 baguette diamonds on the 18k gold dial.

100 diamonds and 32 baguette diamonds on the case

803 diamonds and 150 baguette diamonds on the bracelet.

While the Tiffany Blue Nautilus had its secondary price driven up by demand, this diamond-encrusted timepiece is the epitome of luxury, retailing at a whopping price of approximately $453,600.


8. Nautilus 5726A-001

Nautilus 5726A-001

As seen by now, the Nautilus is generally known for its three-handed luxury sports watch with an integrated bracelet. However, the reference 5726A-001 gives us a more complicated watch, this time with an alligator leather strap.

The watch comes in a 40.5mm stainless steel case with a thickness of 11.3mm, water resistance of 120m, and sapphire crystals covering both the dial and the caseback. Through the exhibition caseback, you can view the decorated Patek Philippe Caliber 324 S QA LU 24H/303. 

This relatively long movement reference number is attributed to the complications that the watch features, which include the Annual Calendar and Moonphase, along with the Day, Date, Month, and 24-hour display.

This movement beats at 28,800 VPH and maintains a power reserve of up to 45 hours. The sunray gradient black dial with the signature embossed horizontal groove lines, combined with the black leather strap and the gorgeous blue Moonphase at the lower center, make this model a hopeless romantic’s ideal grail timepiece.

The Nautilus 5726A-001 retails for approximately $49,090.

9. Nautilus 5980/1AR-001

Nautilus 5980/1AR-001

It’s understandable when watch brands avoid dabbling with two-tone case materials, as these often lead to a divided fanbase. It’s always when you plan to bring back something that was ‘cool’ in the 80s. But in 2013, Patek Philippe released one of the most desirable two-tone luxury sports watches ever made.

The Nautilus 5980/1AR-001 comes in a 40.5mm two-tone case, with a mixture of stainless-steel and 18k rose gold case. The larger case height of 12.2mm is attributed to the automatic caliber CH 28-520 C, featuring a column-wheeled flyback chronograph and a date indicator. This movement gives the watch a higher power reserve than the standard three-hand Nautilus, allowing it to run for up to 55 hours at a beat frequency of 28,800 VPH.

By expertly combining highly elegant and sporty elements (and not resulting in an accidental creation of ‘Frankenstein’s monster’), the brand did not just create a gorgeous contemporary timepiece but also a truly versatile one!

With up to 120m of water resistance, a solid rose gold screw-down crown, and a sapphire caseback, the watch retails at approximately $75,700.

10. Nautilus 5980R-001

Nautilus 5980R-001

The Nautilus 5980R-001 is identical to the previously mentioned ref. 5980/1AR in terms of the technical features, but it comes with different case and bracelet configurations, making this model look and feel entirely distinct.

The 40.5mm case is made of rose gold and displays a gradient brown dial with darker tones on the periphery. Similar to the 5980/1AR, this model features matching rose gold applied indices with lume, along with a rose gold handset.

However, this reference appears sportier, thanks to the white and red accents on the subdial above 6 o’clock that features a co-axial chrono counter. And the fact that the chronograph pushers on either side of the right ‘ear’ hardly stand out makes this model maintain the easily recognizable rounded silhouette of the Nautilus.

The movement housed inside the brushed and polished rose gold case is the manufacture caliber CH 28-520 C, featuring Patek Philippe’s seal-worthy hand finishing and a 55-hour power reserve.

This Nautilus 5980R-001 comes at a retail price of approx. $73,330.

11. Nautilus 5712/1R-001

Nautilus 5712/1R-001

Unlike most Nautilus references that maintain symmetry with their dials, the 5712/1R-001 differentiates itself by presenting the most playful and equally daring dial configuration.

The gradient-brown dial shows off a gorgeous Moonphase and date indicator on the bottom left, a subdial with small seconds on the bottom right, and a power reserve indicator on the top left corner, rendering this as one of the busiest dials on a Patek Nautilus.

Part of the latest release within the Nautilus family, this variant comes in a fully rose gold case and integrated bracelet, measuring at 40mm case diameter and a slim height of only 8.52mm. Inside the case is the automatic Caliber 240 PS IRM C LU, which provides the wearer a slower beat frequency of 21,600 VPH, but a slightly extended power reserve of up to 48 hours.

Considering that this reference features just 60m of water resistance, you wouldn’t take this as a do-it-all sports watch but rather as an exquisite dress or everyday style watch. 

The retail price of the reference 5712/1R-001 is approximately $82,800.

12. Nautilus 5740/1G-001

Nautilus 5740/1G-001

Patek Philippe pulled out all of its guns with the release of its most complicated Nautilus in 2018, the reference 5740/1G-001. The watch is presented in a 40mm white gold case, with an 8.42mm thickness, a tapered integrated gold bracelet, sapphire crystal covering both the dial and the see-through caseback, and a water resistance of 60m.

Powering the first Grand Complication model within the Nautilus lineup is the Patek Philippe Caliber 240 Q, ticking at a beat frequency of 28,800 VPH and having a power reserve of 45 hours. The blue dial on this appears much brighter than a 5711’s darker gradient dial.

It displays three subdials featuring various functions: Day/Night Indication, Date, Leap Year, Month, Perpetual Calendar, and a Moonphase. The fact that Patek incorporated a Grand Complication in such an ultra-thin case truly showcases the unbeatable watchmaking strength of the brand.

This is also the most expensive Nautilus model sold at retail for a staggering price of approx. $145,480.

Ladies Collection

13. Nautilus 7118/1A-010

Nautilus 7118/1A-010

It’s often construed by the enthusiast community that the majority of watch brands don’t cater to women’s watches as well as men’s. And while this can be debated, most can’t deny the pursuit of perfection from Patek Philippe when looking at the ladies’ collection, like this Nautilus 7118/1A-010.

This watch comes in a 35.2mm stainless steel case, a case thickness of 8.62mm, and a water resistance of 60m. With a combination of silvery opaline and gray dial featuring a wave motif instead of the strictly linear lines of the larger counterparts, the 7118/1A is one of the more subdued models within the ladies’ lineup.

Housed inside the case is the automatic Caliber 324 S C, beating at 28,800 VPH and providing a maximum power reserve of 45 hours. Apart from the pattern, all of the minor details on the dial, including the hands, applied indices, and the date window placement, make this reference boast an original design whilst maintaining the unmistakable design DNA of the Nautilus.

With a retail price of approximately $30,750, this is a strong contender as an elegant yet discreet, everyday-style luxury timepiece.

14. Nautilus 7010/1R-012

Nautilus 7010/1R-012

The Patek Philippe reference 7010/1R-012 is by far the most compact offering within the Nautilus collection, coming in at just 32mm, with a case height of 6.9mm and a water resistance of 60m.

The model features a solid rose gold case, an integrated bracelet, a two-tone golden/brown wave dial, and 45 flawless diamonds individually set on the gold bezel.

Powering the timepiece is an in-house quartz Caliber E23-250 S C.. Unlike the mass-produced quartz calibers found in entry-level watches, this movement transcends nearly all quartz calibers in terms of its finishing, performance, and overall attention to detail.

Protected behind the solid caseback, the Caliber E23-250 S C beats at a quartz frequency of 32,768 Hz and has a battery life of 3 years. And although this model can be found in a few other configurations, including different dial and strap options, I found the 7010/1R-012 to be a well-balanced pick that exudes a feel of both elegance and style.

This reference retails at approximately $52,040

15. Nautilus 7118/1300R-001

Nautilus 7118/1300R-001

The Patek Nautilus 7118/1300R-001 can be seen as the polar opposite of the relatively minimal 7118/1A-010 discussed previously. The rose-gilt ‘waves’ motif dial features 11 reddish-brown spessartite gemstones as hour markers and 68 baguette-cut spessartites on the bezel.

And if this is the first time you see these gemstones on a watch, it shouldn’t be surprising considering how rare these stones are. The solid rose gold case measures 32mm, with a case thickness of 8.62mm, and comes with 60m of water resistance.

Housed inside the case is the Patek Philippe automatic Caliber 324 S C, coming in with 45 hours of power reserve and a smooth sweeping seconds hand thanks to the 28,800 VPH beat frequency. What I find truly fascinating about this reference is how the gemstones constantly play with light to create ever-changing shades of red, gold, and brown.

The contrast between these darker cognac-colored gems against the much lighter case and dial makes the design of this watch a breathtaking hybrid of classic and contemporary. It’s unique but not too flashy, and I absolutely adore that about this fusion.

The 7118/1300R-001 retails at approximately $82,000.

Final Thoughts

It’s hard to believe that Patek Philippe had anticipated the level of success one of their riskiest releases would garner over several decades. It’s almost poetic to see how such an attempt at the brand’s survival resulted in the creation of a timeless legend.

No matter what case materials, dial colors, complications, or bracelet options are featured on the various Nautilus references, the iconic silhouette of Patek Philippe’s most successful timepiece remains uncompromised.

Dive Watches under 2000

In the vast world of watches, there are specific styles that can be classified according to their intended purpose. The ‘Dive’ watch is one of the most popular amongst these styles, mainly because of its sheer versatility and robust nature.

But, because of the endless options and price points to choose from, dive watches that fall between $1000 to $2000 often get missed, as they’re part of neither entry nor high-end range.

And although the term ‘luxury’ can be subjective, I would not classify dive watches within this range as luxurious. I would, however, consider this price bracket when searching for a well-made dive watch with impeccable specifications that can be passed down to the next generation. ‘Quality’ is the right word when describing these.

In this article, I have listed some of the best dive watches you can find between $1000 and $2000. But before we get to the list, there are a few things we need to understand about dive watches:

What is a Dive Watch?

Essentially, a dive watch is designed to be worn underwater, specifically for underwater activities. Due to the several variations of water-based activities, you can find many dive watches today with different specifications made for specific use.


A dive watch is used to record dive times, ensuring that they resurface before their oxygen runs out. While such watches were the only tool capable of providing such functions in the past, modern professionals typically rely on electronic dive computers, with mechanical dive watches worn as a reliable backup. This is why automatic dive watches are still in demand and are not seen as obsolete relics of the past.

Other Uses

While professionals may use dive watches to record dive time, the general masses see these instruments as the ultimate do-it-all sports watches that can be worn during scenarios where sturdy and reliable watches are required.

Brief history

The first water-proof watch was released as early as the 1920s by Rolex. However, the first dive watches that met current professional specifications were released in the 1950s by brands such as Blancpain, Rolex, and Zodiac. These early iterations are considered pioneers of the dive watch design format, as their features are still in modern dive watches today.

Characteristics of a Dive Watch

There are certain general characteristics that make a dive watch, and they include:

  • Water Resistance – adequate water resistance, with a helium-release valve (for saturation diving), which protects the watch from damage during depressurization.
  • Bezel – unidirectional rotating bezel with markings that record dive time.
  • Crown – screw-down crown enables extensive water resistance.
  • Lume – enables the watch to be read in dark settings.
  • Strap – will typically feature an on-the-go diving extension, which allows the diver to adjust the strap over the diving suit.
  • Build – dive watch should ensure adequate robustness (suitable materials, case proportions, etc.).
  • Movement – accurate, tried and tested, workhorse movements are essential.

20 Best Dive Watches Under $2000

1. Tissot Seastar 2000 Professional (ref. – T120.607.11.041.00)

Tissot Seastar 2000 Professional

While Tissot is generally considered one of the best gateways into the world of heritage-rich Swiss watch brands, the Tissot Seastar 2000 Professional is a way for the brand to flex its watchmaking abilities within its dive watch lineup.

The Seastar 2000 Professional houses an auto Powermatic 80 movement with an impressive 80-hour power reserve. With Tissot’s custom-decorated rotor, this incredible workhorse movement can be seen through an exhibition caseback.

With a whopping water resistance of 600m (with ISO 6425 certification and a helium escape valve), the watch sits on the larger side, with a case diameter of 46mm, a thickness of 16.3mm, and a lug-to-lug of 51.6mm, making this suitable for medium to larger wrists. You also get generous lume on both the handset and the applied markers, a domed sapphire crystal with AR coating, a ceramic rotating bezel, a date function, and a gradient greenish-blue dial with a wave pattern.

2. Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 300

Christopher Ward C60 Trident Pro 300

Before developing this watch, the brand asked its fan base what they wanted to see in their ideal dive watch. The response led to the much-anticipated release of the new C60 Trident Pro 300.

Christopher Ward is one of those brands that has gained tremendous popularity among collectors, leading to one of the most passionate fan bases I have witnessed for a watch brand of its caliber.

While the Trident has generally been regarded as a fan-favorite contemporary dive watch from CW’s offerings, the C60 Trident Pro 300 is the latest evolution within the Trident family. The watch comes in a 40mm ‘Light-catcher’ stainless-steel case with 47.45mm lug-to-lug and a slim height of 11.3mm.

You also have extra options of 38mm and 42mm case sizes, as well as different dial colors, to choose from. Additionally, you get a unidirectional rotating bezel with a zirconia (ZrOC) ceramic bezel, sapphire crystal, marine-grade stainless-steel bracelet with micro-adjustments and quick-release, and an exhibition caseback through which you can see the Swiss Selita SW200-1 automatic movement.

With 300m of water resistance and a price tag of $1,050 on the brand’s website, this watch is hard to beat in terms of what you’re getting for the price!

3. Laco Squad Mojave 39 (ref – 862132.MB)

Laco Squad Sport Mojave

This German brand, founded in 1925, is globally recognized as one of the pioneers of the B-Uhr style watches during World War II. In fact, I would regard them as one of the few brands today that develop their Pilot watches in their ‘purist’ form, emphasizing function over form.

But Laco also produces contemporary dive watches that exude quality in their looks and tactile feel. The Laco Squad Mojave 39 is one of the brand’s midsized offerings within their dive watch lineup, coming in at a 39mm stainless steel case with 47.5mm lug-to-lug and a 13mm of thickness.

Although you can choose between a few different case sizes (along with other colorways and strap options), the 39mm case seems to be the most versatile for most smaller to mid-sized wrists.

You also get a double-domed, anti-reflective sapphire crystal, along with a ceramic bezel and a screw-down crown that enables the watch to have 300m of water resistance. With all these features and the Automatic Laco 200 (Sellita SW200) movement, the Laco Squad should not be overlooked.

You can find this watch at Exquisite Timepieces for $1,130.

4. Mido Ocean Star Tribute (ref – M026.830.11.041.00)

Mido Ocean Star Tribute (ref - M026.830.11.041.00)

While Mido is well-known in the industry as a producer of some of the most attainable and capable chronometer-certified dive watches, the Ocean Start Tribute is not designed as a professional tool watch. But instead, it is intended as a casual desk diver with heritage-inspired design cues.

This model comes in a completely polished stainless-steel 40.5mm case, with a 47mm lug-to-lug and a height of 13.4mm, making this watch sit more on the elegant side.

Underneath the retro blue dial that’s covered by a domed sapphire crystal, you have the Automatic Mido Caliber 80 (base ETA C07.621) with an impressive 80 hours of power reserve and a Niavchron Balance-Spring that is designed to increase precision by reducing magnetic effects.

Another impressive thing about this watch is its polished multi-link bracelet, which is a welcomed feature, in addition to a folding clasp with a diver’s extension. With a price tag of approximately $1,150, this limited edition is worth considering as a vintage-inspired diver with modern capabilities.

5. Farer Leven Ocean Titanium

Farer Leven Ocean Titanium

There’s something about Farer watches that makes them appealing to many, including myself. Farer is an independent British watchmaker founded in 2015 and has garnered a massive following ever since.

The Leven Ocean Titanium is a Compressor dive watch that comes in a 41mm marine-grade titanium case with 12.5mm thickness and a 45mm lug-to-lug distance. You get a double curved sapphire crystal on top of the case, with a flat sapphire caseback, through which you can observe the Automatic Sellita SW200-1 Elaboré, with a decorated rotor.

Although coming in a compact case, the watch offers abundant water resistance of 300m, with both hacking and hand-winding features. Matching the aqua-blue dial with orange accents, the timepiece is supplied with a quick-release rubber strap with a titanium buckle.

The Farer Leven Ocean Titanium retails at $1,175.

6. Unimatic Modello Uno (ref – U1S-T-MP)

Unimatic Modello Uno

If I could describe the Unimatic Modello Uno with one word, I would simply call it ‘subtle’. Whether it’s the slim case, the sunken bezel insert, or the low-key brand logo above 6, you can tell that this watch is just plain cool!

This independent Italian watch brand was founded in 2015, but what it lacks in heritage, it makes up with its unique, industrial design.

The Unimatic Modello Uno is a no-nonsense, minimalist dive watch with superb specs! This Limited Edition of 500 pieces comes in a gray and blue colorway in a 41.5mm sandblasted titanium case with a double-domed sapphire crystal, making it nearly 45% lighter than a stainless-steel case.

Inside the watch, you get a Swiss Automatic Sellita SW200-1 movement with both hacking and manual winding. But what’s truly mind-boggling is that this watch, with up to 300m of water resistance, is only 11.3mm thick, making it an ideal everyday sports watch.

This watch can be purchased for $1,180 at Exquisite Timepieces.

7. Hamilton Khaki Navy Frogman Auto (ref – H77825331)

Hamilton Khaki Navy Frogman Auto (ref – H77825331)

When people think of watches by Hamilton, their mind immediately jumps to the brand’s iconic ‘Field’ watches. However, the brand also has a history of producing excellent dive watches.

The Hamilton Khaki Navy Frogman Auto is the brand’s modern take on its original dive watch. While Hamilton does offer smaller case sizes, this model sits on the larger side, coming in a case size of 46mm, with its prominently iconic crown protector, a lug-to-lug of 51.3mm, and a thickness of 13.9mm. The brand describes this watch as ‘Hamilton’s most technically capable maritime-ready watch’.

The watch is powered by Hamilton’s H-10 Automatic caliber (based on ETA’s C07.611), modified to provide an impressive 80-hour power reserve, and comes with 300m of water resistance. Throw in a hard sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating, a unidirectional black bezel with applied indexes, excellent legibility, a khaki green rubber strap, and a solid crown guard, and this watch is built for action!

8. Serica 5303 -1

Serica 5303 -1

Not too long ago, the new Swiss microbrand, known as Serica, took over Instagram’s watch space by storm, largely thanks to their unique design (involving a ceramic bezel with a second time zone), combined with phenomenal specs and relatively attainable price.

The 5303-1 is a part of the brand’s dive collection, offered in a 39mm case size, lug-to-lug of 46.5mm, thickness of 12.2mm, and with a double domed sapphire crystal. The 300m of water resistance is made possible with a screw-down crown, which you can choose to have at either the standard left (9 o’clock) or on the right-hand side (destro).

The watch is powered by the Soprod Newton P092 automatic movement, which boasts a high-end shock-resistant system and a chronometric accuracy of -4/+4 seconds per day.

Everything about this watch is unique, from its unconventional bezel design to its luminescent indexes. It’s no wonder this watch is still considered highly collectible by enthusiasts. This reference can be found on Serica’s website for $1,200.

9. Yema Superman 500 (ref – YSUP22B39-GMS)

Yema Superman 500

This French brand dates back to 1948, with the original Yema Superman of 1963 supplied to the French Air Force. The Yema Superman 500 comes in an impressively compact stainless-steel case, especially considering its 500m of water resistance, coming in at just 39mm diameter, 48mm lug-to-lug, and 13.4mm thickness (although you can opt for a larger 41mm case).

Inside the watch, you have Yema’s new automatic in-house caliber YEMA2000, offering an accuracy rate of +/- 10 seconds per day and a 42-hour power reserve. This new movement is also claimed to have improved shock resistance by the brand. The slim aluminum bezel is equipped with Yema’s proprietary bezel-lock system, ensuring that the bezel stays in place even in the most turbulent of conditions.

Protecting the blue dial is a double-domed sapphire crystal, giving the watch a timeless, retro-diver look without compromising durability. Super-LumiNova BGW9 Grade A treatment on applied markers, hands, and bezel ensures optimal legibility in dark environments. The brushed stainless steel bracelet, with polished center links, comes with a diver’s extension and secure lock system, making it both elegant and practical.

The Yema Superman 500 retails for $1,249 on the brand’s website.

10. Squale T183 Forged Carbon Orange (ref – 183FCOR)

Squale T183 Forged Carbon Orange

This wouldn’t be a ‘Best Dive Watch’ list without mentioning Squale. The Swiss brand, founded in the 1950s, supplied its robust dive watches to the Italian Navy in the 70s.

The Squale T183 case is made of forged carbon, making it one of the few dive watches to be built with this lightweight yet tough material (especially in this price range). Coming in at 42mm case size, with 49mm lug-to-lug and a rather substantial height of 15.5mm, this watch falls on the larger size within the dive watch spectrum.

But with 600m of water resistance, these overall case dimensions are not surprising. Covering the black dial, you have a flat, anti-reflective sapphire crystal, with Super-LumiNova C3 lume applied on the hands and rectangular applied indexes, providing an impressive glow in the dark. Powering this well-built and sporty, all-black timepiece is the Automatic Sellita SW 200-1.

The orange accents on the strap and dial, along with the different shades of black on the case, bezel, and dial, give this watch a sporty look, giving it that everyday versatility while also giving it saturation-dive capabilities.

The watch retails for $1,375 at Exquisite Timepieces.

11. Seiko “Ice Diver” U.S Special Edition (ref – SPB265)

Seiko “Ice Diver” U.S Special Edition

Among other things, Seiko is well-known for its dials and dive watches. But the Seiko Turtle SPB265 is still a relatively unique offering by the brand, especially in terms of its fusion of a Grand Seiko-ish dial in a dive watch format.

This watch comes in a 42.7mm stainless-steel case (with hard coating) but wears quite compact on the wrist, thanks to a lug-to-lug of 46.4mm and a thickness of 13.2mm. You have a domed sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating on the inner side, fitted above a wave-patterned greenish-blue dial. The inspiration for this dial design is from the shifting light colors reflecting off glacial ice – very Seiko!

Seiko’s in-house Automatic 6R35 movement is powering the watch, featuring both hacking and hand-winding and a power reserve of 70 hours. The watch can dive up to 200m and comes with excellent legibility, thanks to Seiko’s proprietary LumiBrite on hands, indexes, and the gray bezel.

You can find this watch at Exquisite Timepieces for $1,400.

12. Zodiac Super Sea Wolf (ref – ZO9269)

Zodiac Super Sea Wolf

When most think of the Rolex Submariner and the Blancpain Fifty-Fathoms as the ‘original’ dive watches that paved the way for the contemporary dive-watch format, a third brand from the same era is often forgotten – and that is Zodiac. This Swiss brand, founded in 1882, released its first dive watch for the public in 1953, around the same time as the release of the first Rolex Submariner.

This modern reinterpretation comes with green and orange accents, making it an excellent casual summer diver. The watch comes in a 40mm case diameter, 13mm of thickness, and a lug-to-lug of 49mm, making it quite wearable for most wrists.

Housed inside the case is a COSC-certified Swiss Automatic STP 3-13 movement with 44 hours of power reserve. You also get 200m of water resistance, a sapphire crystal, and a butterfly deployant clasp on the 5-link bracelet. But unlike Rolex or Blancpain, you can buy this historically significant diver for just $1,495 at Exquisite Timepieces.

13. Marathon Large Diver’s Automatic (GSAR) – 41mm (SKU: WW194006)

Marathon Large Diver’s Automatic (GSAR)

If you’re looking for a serious tool watch, it doesn’t get any more serious than the Canadian watch brand Marathon. Marathon not only supplied the Allied Forces with timepieces in the 1940s but, according to the brand, its watches are now issued to US Army, Navy, NASA, Marine Corps, and Canadian Armed Forces, as well as several other government agencies.

The Marathon Large Diver’s Auto (GSAR) is part of the brand’s US Government Editions. These watches were first introduced in the early 90s and designed to meet Canadian Government’s Search and Rescue mission requirements.

The watch comes in a 41mm brushed stainless-steel case with a thickness of 14mm and a lug-to-lug of 48mm. However, you can also choose between 36mm and 46mm case sizes. You get 300m of water resistance, a Swiss Automatic Sellita SW200 with an Incabloc™ Shock Absorber system, and a sapphire crystal.

The watch features Tritium Gas Tubes and MaraGlo™, providing continuous lume to the wearer. With these specifications, along with the easy-to-grip bezel and the tank-like overall build – it’s no surprise that the Canadian SAR relies on these watches for their missions.

This model retails for $1,500 on Marathon’s website.

14. Anonimo Nautilo Sailing Edition Turquoise

Anonimo Nautilo Sailing Edition Turquoise

If I were to search for a suitable, affordable alternative to a Panerai, I would strongly consider Anonimo. This Italian watch brand, founded in the 1990s, is more than just a homage brand of Panerai.

The Anonimo Nautilo Sailing Edition is a reinterpretation of a dive watch designed by Dino Zei, the former CEO of Panerai before the brand was taken over by the Richemont Group, after which he joined Anonimo.

The Anonimo Nautilo Sailing Edition comes in a 44mm cushion case with 12.4mm thickness and 200m of water resistance. The case is made of stainless steel with black DLC-coating.

Covering the sun-ray dial is a domed sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating and a solid caseback made of hypoallergenic titanium. Powering this watch is the Swiss Auto Sellita SW200-1, which comes with 38 hours of power reserve. The watch also features a date window above 6, with a matching backdrop, which is a nice little attention to detail.

You can purchase this watch at Exquisite Timepieces for $1,599.

15. Longines Hydroconquest 39mm (ref – L3.780.4.96.6)

Longines Hydroconquest 39mm

The Longines Hydroconquest has always been a near-perfect dive watch, with the only complaint about it being the extended lug-to-lug distance. But Longines seems to have solved this issue with the release of the new 39mm variant, giving us three case sizes to choose from within the Hydroconquest line.

Founded in 1832, Longines is one of the oldest Swiss watch brands today, with several achievements under its belt (including developing one of the world’s first chronograph wristwatches).

Looking at the Hydroconquest 39mm, the case comes with a very wearable 47.75mm lug-to-lug distance and a height of 12.2mm, making this variation almost the same size as a Tudor Black Bay 58.

You get more than enough, 300m of water resistance, a sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating on both sides, and a bracelet with a double safety folding clasp and diving extension. The Automatic caliber L888 is an exclusive movement developed for Longines by ETA, based on the ETA A31.L11 base. This movement extends its power reserve to 72 hours by slowing the beat frequency to 25,200 vph instead of the standard 28,800 vph.

With Longines’ monumental heritage and a price tag of $1,700 on Longines’ website, this watch is a no-brainer.

16. Mido Ocean Star 600 Chronometer (ref – M026.608.11.041.01)

Mido Ocean Star 600 Chronometer

The Ocean Star 600 Chronometer is Mido’s way of flexing its watchmaking expertise. While the previously mentioned Mido Ocean Star Tribute is more of a retro and elegant style dive watch, the Ocean Star 600 is Mido’s ultimate ‘tool’ watch.

This highly capable dive watch comes in a 43.5mm stainless-steel case size, with a thickness of 14.6mm and a lug-to-lug distance of 50mm, making it a suitable contender for medium to larger wrist sizes. The movement inside the watch is the COSC-certified Automatic Caliber 80 (base ETA C07.821), with a silicon balance spring, which is known to improve the movement’s accuracy and overall performance.

You also have a helium escape value that enables a whopping 600m of water resistance. The gradient blue dial, combined with the glossy ceramic bezel insert, adds a bit of elegance to this watch, making it well-suited for both formal and sporty occasions.

At around $1,700 on Mido’s website, you’re getting good value for money.

17. Formex Reef

Formex Reef

Formex is a relatively recent, independent Swiss watch manufacturer most famously recognized for its state-of-the-art case design, which includes a patented case adjustment system. But today, we look at their dive collection, known as ‘Reef’.

The Formex Reef comes in a 42mm stainless-steel case size, with 47mm lug-to-lug and a thickness of 11.4mm, along with a sapphire crystal with AR coating and water resistance of 300m. Powered by the self-winding Sellita SW300-1, this COSC-certified caliber comes with 56 hours of power reserve and makes it possible for this watch to have its special slim case.

You get a 120-click, smooth unidirectional rotating action with a durable and scratch-resistant Zirconium Oxide Ceramic bezel. The watch also features a new bezel mounting system which makes it possible to change bezel inserts without tools, along with a patented quick-release bracelet system.

Both of these are truly innovative features that enable ease of customization on Formex watches. Even the sunburst finishing on the dial and the markers are finished and applied in-house by hand.

With everything that’s included, the $1,850 on the brand’s website feels like a bargain.

18. Doxa Sub 300T Professional (ref – 840.10.351.10)

Doxa Sub 300T Professional

While the Doxa Sub 300T might seem like a playful take on a dive watch, don’t let the fun dial colors fool you. The first Sub 300T Conquistador was launched in 1968 (nearly 80 years after the Swiss brand was founded) as the first dive watch with a helium release valve intended for the general masses. And the Sub 300T Professional pays tribute to the ground-breaking original.

This model comes with professional specifications, capable of saturation diving up to 1,200m. The movement inside is a self-winding Swiss Automatic ETA 2824. With lug-to-lug of only 45mm, a case size of 42.5mm, and a thickness of 13.65mm with that boxed sapphire crystal, this watch works as a professional deep-diver or a casual summer watch, making this package appealing to many collectors.

The tonneau-shaped case with the orange dial, alongside the bead-of-rice bracelet (with diver’s extension), makes this watch unlike anything else on the market. With a price tag of approximately $2000 on the brand’s website, the Doxa Sub 300T proves that you can get a unique, highly capable mechanical dive watch with more than enough specifications without having to sell your house.

19. Ball Roadmaster Skipper Day Date (ref – DM3030B-S7CJ-GY)

Ball Roadmaster Skipper Day Date

BALL is a highly underrated American brand with a long history of significant watchmaking. The Great Kipton Train Wreck of 1891 led to the inception of the BALL Watch company. The devastating train collision led Webb C. Ball to develop highly accurate timepieces designed specifically for railway engineers, following strict accuracy requirements.

The contribution of this company led to improved railroad timekeeping standards, making BALL one of the most important watch brands in American horological history.

The BALL Roadmaster Skipper Day Date comes with a COSC-certified, Swiss Automatic BALL RR1102-C (base ETA 2836-2) movement with a magnetic resistance of 4,800 A/m, 200m of water resistance and 5,000 Gs of shock resistance, making this a remarkably robust watch in its price category.

The watch wears well on the wrist, thanks to its 40mm stainless steel case, with 47.8mm lug-to-lug distance and a thickness of 13.2mm. You also get continuous glow in the dark, thanks to BALL’s micro gas tubes on the stainless-steel rotating bezel and dial.

Although the retail price of this highly accurate yet robust timepiece is approximately $2,550, the watch can be found at Exquisite Timepieces on sale for just $1,911.75.

20. Oris Aquis Date (ref – 01 733 7766 4135-07 4 22 64FC)

Oris Aquis Date

Oris, the independent Swiss brand from 1904, produces some of the most unique and well-finished watches in its price category. Whether it’s the classic Big Crown Pointer Date or the heritage Diver 65 in bronze, there’s nothing quite like Oris in terms of its strong visual identity.

This Aquis Date model reference comes in a 41.5mm case size with a dark blue sunburst dial and a rubber strap. You get quite a few configurations to choose from, including movements, dial colors, case sizes, and a choice between a stainless-steel bracelet and a rubber strap.

The movement in this model is the Swiss Automatic Oris 733 (base SW200-1) that can be viewed, with the brand’s signature red rotor, through the see-through caseback. You also get 300m of water resistance (thanks to the screw-down crown), a domed sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating, a ceramic unidirectional bezel, a date function, and both hacking and hand-winding features.

Legibility won’t be an issue, thanks to the excellent Swiss Super-LumiNova BGW9 lume generously applied throughout the applied indices and the handset. This watch can be found at Exquisite Timepieces, starting from $2000.

Final Thoughts

If you don’t have ten grand to spend on a timepiece, but desire a watch that boasts incredible specifications, build quality, and a reputable brand that can be relied upon, you can then easily opt for these stunning dive watches, ranging between $1000 to $2000.

With the watches listed above, you get great, workhorse movements with great accuracy, sufficient water resistance for both casual and professional water activities, and excellent build quality that will ensure these watches a long life, even after daily wear and tear.

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