Jacob Strong, Author at Exquisite Timepieces
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Author: Jacob Strong

seiko world time watches

A timepiece can serve many purposes for the person whose wrist it adorns. They, of course, serve a practical function in telling the time or another practical purpose, such as elapsed time for a dive or another time zone. Perhaps the greatest complication that any watch can have is the ability to allow you to be another person. 

Wearing a Rolex Explorer does not inherently make you more adventurous. But, I undoubtedly feel the desire to take the path less traveled when I have mine strapped to the wrist (a far cry from Mt. Everest, but my dog appreciates the new smells). 

Watches allow the wearer to be whoever they want to be. A diver, a pilot, an astronaut, or even a jet-setting businessman are all possible with the right timepiece on the wrist. There are so few socially acceptable times when adults can use their imagination, and I, for one, am not afraid to admit that I love it! 

One complication that has always stood out to me as the next evolution of timepiece LARPing, Live Action Role Playing (you’re a nerd just like me, don’t act like you didn’t know what that stood for!), is the world timer. The ability to see the time everywhere at once is one that I can’t ever imagine needing. That’s what’s great about imagination; we don’t really need to have the answers to pretend.

About the World Time Complication

So, what exactly is a world time complication? In a nutshell, this complication allows you to tell the time in all 24 time zones based on reference cities displayed on the dial. By knowing the reference city of your time zone and other reference points around the world, the wearer will essentially know the time worldwide.

Is it as practical as a standard GMT feature? Probably not, but since when has practicality been the deciding factor in which watch we wear? Back in 1931, Louis Cottier developed the world time function for a wristwatch as we know it today.

While 1931 is more than a couple of years ago, this complication is relatively modern in the grand scheme of watchmaking, especially when considering the tourbillon, another high-end mechanical feat of watchmaking was first seen in 1801, a mere 130 years prior. 

The world time complication was originally seen on only the most luxurious watches produced by brands such as Patek Phillippe, the brand perhaps most synonymous with the complication. However, thanks to advancements in movement technology, this complication is no longer reserved for only those in the upper crust of society.

What is the Purpose of the World Time Watch?

When there are complications that provide similar functionality to the world time watch, why would someone choose the world time over these other simpler options? There are two very different but equally valid reasons to pick up a world time complication. 

First, if you frequently communicate with people in several time zones, no complication will allow you to track more than 3 time zones simultaneously.

This is definitely a minority of the population. But, if you have a family that has dispersed internationally or if you conduct international business, I could see this feature being very practical for your everyday life. Even a traveler-style GMT with a rotational timing bezel will struggle to keep up with this level of demand.

I suspect that the second reason is one that applies to 90% of the people considering one of these timepieces. The ability to tell time around the world is the ultimate horological flex! Watch enthusiasts are obsessed with telling the time, and no watch can tell you the time in as many places at a glance as a world timer. Whether it’s a fun party trick or our desire to pretend we are a true world traveler, the world timer complication has an undeniable cool factor.

The Best Seiko World Time Watches

As much as I love the world time feature, it has always seemed out of reach for someone with a far looser belt than me. As mentioned earlier, the enhancements in movement technology have brought this complication down to accessibility for the other 99% of watch collectors.

Perhaps the last brand you would associate with the world time complication is the one that I would suggest you look at if you’re interested in dipping your toe in the complication. 

Enthusiast-favorite Seiko has been innovating in this space and quietly producing model after model that continues to bring the world time to the masses. Let’s take a look at some of the best examples from Seiko that feature a world time complication.

1. Seiko Astron SSH003 

Seiko Astron SSH003 

Seiko is a brand known for pushing the limits of watchmaking. Whether it was their near Swiss watch crippling quartz movement of the late 1960s or the modern Spring Drive movement delivering the very best of quartz and mechanical movement technologies, Seiko has always been a pioneer. 

Knowing this history, the innovative Seiko Astron line should come as no surprise. This line of watches features a quartz-powered movement that is regulated by a GPS signal. This series of watches delivers incredible internal technology with the beautiful finishing we have come to expect from Seiko’s premium line of watches.   

The Seiko Astron, Ref. SSH003, is a 42.9mm watch made of titanium. The watch features a sapphire crystal and ceramic bezel. The 50.7mm lug-to-lug and 12mm case thickness help this larger cased watch fit slightly smaller on the wrist. The GPS Solar 5X53 movement allows this watch to feature a world time function and a perpetual calendar allowing the date to be accurate until the year 2100 (no more date changes for you!). 

The watch receives power from the sun and can remain charged for up to 6 months on a full charge. If you are looking for a watch that is truly set and forget, few watches can compete with this Seiko. Coming in at about $2350, this Seiko Astron watch provides a user experience few brands can match at any price.

2. Seiko SSC507

Seiko SSC507

If innovative technology is not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Seiko, I am willing to bet that the name Seiko conjures up an idea of affordability. Seiko has been the market leader in many segments when it comes to providing value for money, and the word time function is no different.

The Seiko Prospex, Ref. SSC507 is a 42mm stainless steel watch featuring a world time and chronograph function. This watch is accented by many of the finishing details you expect to see on watches several times the price, such as 100M of water resistance and sapphire crystal. 

This Prospex model is powered by the V195 solar quartz movement, further aiding in the everyday usability of this watch. If you were intrigued by the Seiko Astron mentioned earlier, but your budget can only stretch to roughly $475 (many discounts to be had on this one!), you’d be hard-pressed to beat this model. You may have to set the date a couple of times a year, but with the money you are saving, I think you’ll manage!

3. Seiko Coutura SSG009

Seiko Coutura SSG009

Seiko’s ability to have a watch for every type of customer is unmatched in the watch world. Despite having two ends of the quartz spectrum already covered on this list, they have a different product line for those who might be after something between these two options.

Although it can be seen as too many options, I’d argue that when it comes to watches, you can never have too many options. The Seiko Coutura, Ref. SSG009, features a 44.5mm stainless steel case and integrated bracelet giving this watch more of a wrist presence than the others on this list thus far.

The watch features a chronograph function in addition to its world time complication. These features are made possible by the solar quartz caliber 8B92. Whereas the Astron line is controlled by GPS signal, these movements are regulated by radio control.

These signals are less standardized than the GPS of the Astron but provide very similar functionality. Coming in at a price of $595, this Seiko Coutura provides great functionality at a very approachable price.

4. Seiko Astron SSH121

Seiko Astron SSH121

When looking at the Astron line from Seiko, I am always impressed by their willingness to take a chance on design. Some of the products have futuristic designs while others play with colors that on paper don’t do it for me, but in person, absolutely pop! The Seiko Astron, ref. SSH121, is a great example of both of these attributes. 

The 43.1mm titanium case and integrated bracelet give off the appearance of a PVD coating thanks to the black “super hard coating” applied to the titanium. The vivid blue dial is not what I would have chosen if I was a designer, but after seeing how the whole package comes together, it’s clear that I should keep my opinions to myself. 

The watch is powered by the 5X33 movement providing solar charging, GPS regulation, and a perpetual calendar in addition to the world time function qualifying this watch for our list. Coming in at a price of $2400, this Astron represents tremendous value for someone who wants a futuristic watch but can’t get behind the smart watch movement.

5. Seiko SSC489

Seiko SSC489

Another entry from the affordable Prospex line of watches is the Seiko Prospex, Ref. SSC489. This watch features a more substantial 44.5mm stainless steel case and is powered by the same V195 movement as was seen in the previous Prospex model on this list.

Because of this, you will find the same solar quartz technology powering a chronograph and world time function in addition to standard timekeeping. This watch has been paired with a blue silicone strap that compliments the functionality, as well as it does the blue dial.

The pops of red on the crown stem (much like a Tudor Black Bay) and hour hand help to give this dial a pop of color. Although these are no longer for sale at the $595 MSRP, they are still readily available through other gray market providers.

6. Seiko Prospex World Time SSG015

Seiko Prospex World Time SSG015

If you like the Prospex style of watches but are looking for something a little sleeker, the Seiko Prospex, Ref, SSG015, may be an option to consider. Coming in at a familiar size of 44.5mm, this stainless steel watch looks different from the others on this list. That is thanks to the black ion-plated stainless steel. 

The watch has a darker appearance than titanium but is not quite as dark as DLC or a PVD coating. The dark color, in combination with the aviation-inspired high-contrast black dial with white script, helps to give this watch a more traditional look than some of the others we’ve seen. 

The watch is powered by the Seiko 8B92 movement and features a world time function, chronograph, and radio-controlled adjustment. Coming in at a price of $595, this is another watch from Seiko that punches well above its weight. 

7. Seiko Astron SSH119

Seiko Astron SSH119

If you are in the market for a high-end GPS-controlled watch with a futuristic design to match, the Seiko Astron, Ref. SSH119, may be the watch for you. This Seiko Astron shares the same 5X33 movement as the one previously mentioned and matches the watch in functionality with GPS radio control, world time capability, and a perpetual calendar complication.

What this watch does differently, however, is present these specs in a much more modern execution. This watch features an integrated bracelet with sharp angles and a 43mm case diameter forged in a titanium case with a super hard scratch-resistant coating.

The textured charcoal dial with midnight blue subdials offers a modern aesthetic that matches the case design. If you’re looking for a premium modern world time watch from Seiko, The Seiko Astron, Ref. SSH119, for $2200, is a great option to consider.

8. Seiko Age of Discovery SPL062

Seiko Age of Discovery SPL062

Taking a starkly different direction from the futuristic angles of the Seiko Astron, Ref. SSH119, is the budget-friendly Limited Edition Seiko Age of Discovery, Ref. SPL062, for around $450. This watch is the antithesis of the Astron in both cost and design. 

The watch features a more modest 40mm case dimension housed in an antique-finish bronze case. This finish is not one that you often find, which helps this timepiece stand out from the crowd. The sunburst brown dial and gold Roman numerals help to provide a cohesive design to match the unique case finish.  

Powering this model is the caliber 5T82 quartz movement which features a world time complication as well as an alarm. If you want a watch that stands out from the crowd but maintains a traditional design language, the Seiko SPL062 is hard to beat.

9. Seiko GMT World Time 30th Anniversary Limited Edition SPL055

Seiko GMT World Time 30th Anniversary Limited Edition SPL055

If you like the look of the Seiko Age of Discovery but can’t quite get behind the look of the antique bronze finish, the Seiko Limited Edition SPL055 could be exactly what you’re looking for. Functionally, this watch is identical to the previously mentioned Seiko Age of Discovery while being powered by the same 5T82 caliber. 

The case dimensions even remain consistent with this timepiece, but the antique bronze case and sunburst brown dial are exchanged for a more neutral stainless steel case and white dial. The gold accents and Roman numerals remain and look equally complimentary with this colorway. This watch easily passes for a watch that costs many multiples of the $375 MSRP, making this a great value for someone on a tighter budget.

10. Seiko Selection SBTM329

Seiko Selection SBTM329

While looking through this list I am sure you have noticed the trend of sub-dials. While many prefer this look, some appreciate the aesthetics of a clean dial. That’s where the Seiko Selection, Ref. SBTM329, comes to save the day. The 39.5mm case with the matching bracelet is a size not often seen on Seiko watches in titanium. 

Along with the 9.5mm case thickness and 100m of water resistance, you may have one of the best options for an everyday piece from Seiko at any price point. The solar-powered caliber 7B75 provides radio control, World time functionality, and a perpetual calendar to boot.

However, the real showstopper with this watch has to be the clean black dial with numeral indices. If you missed the cities along the rehaut, you could easily confuse this watch as a time-only watch. 

Prices and availability are a little hit or miss on this model, which is currently available only in Japan. But you can expect to pay $350-$450, which makes this watch an absolute bargain for everything it can do.

11. Seiko Sportura SSF005

 Seiko Sportura SSF005

If you really like the idea of a GPS-controlled quartz movement but can’t quite stretch to the $2k+ of the Astron series, the Seiko Sportura, Ref. SSF005, may be just what you’re looking for. Coming in at a price of $1250 (with many discounts available on the gray market), this watch offers a lot of the functionality you would expect from a watch in the Astron line costing twice that. 

Powered by the 8X22 caliber, this watch features GPS control, World time functionality, and a perpetual calendar. The watch is housed in a large 45.2mm black PVD-coated stainless steel case with a matching bracelet, making this option better suited for larger wrists.

This timepiece features a black dial with simple stick indices that add to the stealth appearance of the black PVD-coated case. If your budget can’t quite get you to a Seiko Astron, this Sportura offers the same functionality in a beautiful, albeit slightly less refined, case.

12. Seiko Astron SSE159

Seiko Astron SSE159

If you loved the look of that last watch but can stretch your budget slightly for a more refined execution, the Seiko Astron SSE159, for roughly $1650, is a great option to consider. This watch shares the 45.2mm case dimension with a matching bracelet but has gone with a standard stainless steel appearance. 

The dial layout is very similar, but the simple black dial from the Sportura has been swapped for a magnificent blue dial with vertical stripes. This watch is also powered by the 8X22 movement providing the same functionality and versatility. If you are looking for a beautifully finished GPS-controlled quartz movement with a stunning blue dial, this is a great option to consider.

13. Seiko Criteria World Timer SPL045

Seiko Criteria World Timer SPL045

Sometimes a watch is large for a purpose, such as a pilot watch or a diver, and other times a watch is just big to make a statement. The Seiko SPL045 is a 46mm black PVD-coated stainless steel watch that certainly makes a statement. Make no mistake, the sub-dials are certainly easier to read, but given the larger crown guard system with symmetrical “ear”, much like a Patek Phillipe Nautilus, this timepiece is meant to grab attention. 

The Neon green accents on the dial play nice with the black dial and black PVD case, giving this timepiece a more futuristic look. Powered by the 5T82 caliber movement, this watch provides a world time complication in addition to an alarm function. If you are looking for a large world timer at a budget-friendly price of $595, this Seiko SPL045 should definitely be on your radar.

14. Seiko World Time Tokyo Olympics 1964 (ref. 6217-7000)

Seiko World Time Tokyo Olympics 1964 (ref. 6217-7000)

Although there is no doubt that Seiko has the ability to produce some unbelievable world time watches today, I truly believe that their best examples are from their historical archives. The Seiko 6217-7000 from the Tokyo Olympics in 1964 is a great example of vintage Seiko at its best.

The watch features a timeless 37.5mm stainless steel case with a 4 O’clock crown. There are 2 color variations available on this model, but the silver dial with the black and blue non-rotatable internal 24-hour bezel is my favorite of the bunch. 

The outside chapter ring with cities from around the world is highlighted in vivid red, which helps to give this dial a very unique look. The 6217A caliber is the first automatic caliber to grace this list but will not be the last. Coming in at a price of roughly $1250-$1500, this is one of the best affordable vintage world timer watches on the market today from any brand.

15. Seiko World Time Asian Games 1966 (ref. 6217-7010)

Another offering from the Seiko historical archive is the Seiko 6217-7010 from the Asian Games in 1966. This watch represents a minor refinement over the previously mentioned 6217-7000. The case back has been upgraded from a snap back to a screw-down, while the hands gained a coat of luminous material to aid in low-light visibility. 

Other than that, Seiko did exactly what they should have done; not much. The silver and charcoal dial options remain, while my favorite is still the latter. If you are looking for a vintage watch that can better withstand the requirements of a more active lifestyle, the Seiko 6217-7010 can provide exactly what you need for a slight premium of roughly $1500-$2000.


So, there you have it, 15 of the best Seiko world time watches! Many of these models tend to fly under the radar to most enthusiasts but are great examples of the power of Seiko. Whether it’s driving innovation with the popularization of the quartz movement in the early 1970s or unlocking the potential of this innovation with the refinements of GPS and solar technologies, Seiko is a brand that continuously raises the bar. 

If we’re lucky enough to strap one of these Seiko world time watches on our wrist, rather than idolizing the world traveler who may need to wear one, perhaps we should aim to channel the innovative spirit of Seiko. If we are able to tap into this, even just a little bit, I am sure we will be better off for it!

Happy Watch Hunting!

tissot powermatic 80 watches

Whether you are a seasoned collector or just getting your footing in the hobby, there is one thing that we can all agree on. The Tissot watch company is absolutely on fire right now. They are at the top of almost every list for value for money and have released hit after hit in the past several years.

Despite a history dating back to 1853, Tissot has not always had the same level of cache they currently own. Being part of the Swiss watch conglomerate SWATCH Group has, in many ways, helped them while also allowing them to get lost in the shuffle.

Tissot’s brand positioning within the SWATCH Group is very congested, to say the least. Hamilton, Certina, Mido, and even some Longines models are all battling in the same category to earn your entry-level luxury dollars. Because they are owned by the same group and are in the same price range, there tends to be a lot of overlap between models.

Thankfully over the last few years, the brands within the SWATCH Group have started to dive more into their historical collections and let their unique design language come through. No brand has had more success with this new distinctiveness than Tissot. 

One thing that many of these brands still tend to share, however, is the use of SWATCH Group-owned ETA and their industry-leading movement manufacturing capabilities. If you compare watches from these brands, many will sport a Powermatic 80 automatic movement.

These movements represent a new direction for the entry-level luxury segment, and when you combine this technology with the segment-leading design, the reasons for Tissot’s surge in popularity become clear to see.

About the Powermatic 80 Movement

What exactly makes this Powermatic 80 movement so special? The main architecture for this movement is based on the tried and true ETA 2824. There are a few differences that help set this new movement apart. As the name suggests, the power reserve of this new movement has been extended to 80 hours from the 38 hours found on a standard ETA 2824.

ETA achieved this increased power reserve by improving their spring barrel and decreasing the beat frequency of the movement from 4Hz, or 28,800 beats per hour, to 3Hz, or 21,600 beats per hour. 

This decreased beat frequency utilizes less energy from the movement to accurately measure the time. Historically speaking, this lower beat frequency had a less than a favorable consequence of less accurate timing. Thankfully for Tissot, ETA was able to help counteract this effect with one of the other enhancements to the Powermatic 80.

These Powermatic 80 movements are laser-regulated in the factory. This does have the unfortunate consequence of making watchmaker regulation considerably more difficult, but if the last few years are anything to go by, the accuracy has been astounding!

The Powermatic 80 is an incredibly accurate movement (why wouldn’t it be; it’s been regulated by actual lasers!) that does not see any accuracy depreciation from its lower beat frequency. Another enhancement in the Powermatic 80 movement is in its magnetic resistance.

ETA went through great effort to ensure that these movements would be more reliable for the casual consumer. The movements utilize several anti-magnetic components in the construction of the movement. 

This is in addition to relying on a silicon or Nivachron hairspring to transfer power from the barrel and to the escapement. Silicon and Nivachron hairsprings have traditionally been reserved for more mainstream luxury brands such as Omega, but thanks to ETA, the technology has finally been adopted by the entry-level. 

History of the Powermatic 80

With how technically impressive the Powermatic 80 movement is, even by today’s standards, it is hard to believe that it has been around for a decade. In late-2012, ETA first introduced the movement that would later go on to shape the entry-level market for the SWATCH Group. Being introduced in the Tissot Ballade, which features a relatively safe dress watch aesthetic, the capabilities of the movement were often the highlight of the timepieces themselves.

Now that Tissot has begun to push out of their comfort zone in terms of design, the Powermatic 80 has quickly become what ETA had hoped for when they designed it over 10 years ago; the workhorse movement standard.

Now that we know a little bit more about the Powermatic 80 movement let’s take a look at some of the great timepieces that bear this amazing mechanical marvel. Although other brands from the SWATCH Group have utilized the movement as well, we are going to focus our attention on Tissot, the Swiss watch brand we’re all rooting for!

The Best Tissot Powermatic 80 Watches

1. Tissot PRX (ref. T137.407.11.041.00)

Tissot PRX (ref. T137.407.11.041.00)

When kicking off any list, it always helps to start with a bang! The Tissot PRX is that bang. Originally based on a quartz model from 1978, the Tissot PRX was re-released in 2020, sporting a true to the original quartz movement. 

It was immediately apparent that Tissot had struck a nerve with this release. Integrated steel sports watches were having a moment (still are, to be honest), and Tissot gave everyone, regardless of their budget or ability to get Authorized Dealer allocation, an opportunity to see what all the fuss was about. A year after the quartz model release, Tissot threw the watch community a bone and released the PRX with an automatic movement.

The Tissot PRX, ref. T137.407.11.041.00, sports the same integrated bracelet design that made the 2020 release a hit. The 40mm tonneau style case allows this watch to look good on a multitude of wrist sizes. The style shares many similarities with more famous integrated sports watches, but given the 1978 history, these watches are given a pass on taking inspiration.

The blue textured dial has a beautiful appearance and punches significantly above its weight. The Tissot PRX is one of the watches that will define the decade. Although Tissot could have easily given this watch a significant price hike, the $675 is out of line. Thankfully for us watch enthusiasts, it’s in our favor.

2. Tissot Gentleman (ref. T127.407.11.051.00)

 Tissot Gentleman (ref. T127.407.11.051.00)

There is no doubt that the Rolex DateJust is one of the most popular watches of all time. The simple formula of robust construction mixed with a style that is casual enough for jeans but can also be dressed up when needed is one that many watch companies try to emulate.

Some have had better success than others, but few have reached the mainstream success of Tissot with their Gentleman line. The Tissot Gentleman, ref. T127.407.11.051.00, is a simple 40mm stainless steel watch with a date function.

Although many color options are available, black is the most versatile for everyday wearability. This watch closely resembles the look of a Rolex DateJust with a smooth bezel and Oyster bracelet, but it also does something that Rolex can not do. 

The Tissot Gentleman comes in at a price of $795 and is regularly available for purchase. When considering the everyday versatility, there might not be a reason to purchase another watch (but let’s not kid ourselves).

3. Tissot Le Locle (ref. T006.407.36.033.00)

Tissot Le Locle (ref. T006.407.36.033.00)

When dealing with a watch brand that dates back to 1853, there is sure to be some traditional influence that creeps through in terms of watch design. The Le Locle line from Tissot is their line of dress watches that take inspiration from traditional watchmakers while combining the aesthetic with the modern tech and affordability we’ve come to expect from Tissot.

The Tissot Le Locle, ref. T006.407.36.033.00, is a 39.3mm stainless steel watch with gold PVD coating. The silver guilloche dial features complimenting gold Roman numerals. In addition to this classic detail, the dial also features Wessleton diamonds along the perimeter.

Details like this give this $695 dress watch a touch of luxury you normally wouldn’t see on a timepiece anywhere near this price range. If you’re looking for an impressive dress watch but don’t want to blow your entire watch collecting budget on it, this Tissot is a great option to consider.

4. Tissot Seastar 1000 (ref. T120.407.17.051.00)

Tissot Seastar 1000 (ref. T120.407.17.051.00)

One of the benefits of being a brand as big as Tissot is that you have the ability to focus on many different styles of watches at the same time. In addition to the dressier side of Tissot, there is also a side of them that is all business, producing very capable dive watches. The first of those we will look at on this list is the Tissot Seastar 1000.

The Tissot Seastar 1000, ref. T120.407.17.051.00, is a 43mm stainless steel dive watch that is capable of reaching depths of 300M or 1000ft. The watch features a unidirectional ceramic bezel, screw-down crown, and crown guards for increased durability for any professional or casual user.

The black dial and bezel combination in this reference is versatile but available in other color combos if you’re looking for something a little more adventurous. Although some models will come with a stainless steel bracelet, this model is paired with a durable black textile strap. 

Some capable divers can easily sell for thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars, yet this Tissot Seastar 1000 is priced at a modest $725. With a price like that, you might actually afford to be able to take this watch on a proper dive!

5. Tissot Seastar 2000 Professional (ref. T120.607.11.041.01)

Tissot Seastar 2000 Professional (ref. T120.607.11.041.01)

Just when you think 1000ft is overkill for a dive watch, Tissot has to up the ante with a dive watch capable of doubling that feat. The Tissot Seastar 2000 Professional, ref. T120.607.11.041.01, features a 46mm case with a case thickness of 16.3mm and a weight of 206 grams. This watch is an absolute beast and best suited for those with a larger wrist.

The heft is justified when considering the ISO 6425 certification and depth rating of 600M or 2000ft. Despite the overly “tooltastic” design and dimensions, the watch still has a touch of elegance with the graded blue-black dial and wave motif (distinctly different from that on the Omega Seamaster). 

The black ceramic unidirectional bezel seems to fade directly into the gradient change on the dial, which really helps give the design a purposeful aesthetic. The bold hands and indices ensure this watch remains legible in low-light conditions.

The Seastar 2000 is a function-first timepiece that can be found for a price that is less than what many others charge for a factory service. At $1075, the Tissot Seastar is a logical choice for any professional diver and perhaps a great illogical choice for anyone that just likes over-engineered timepieces.

6. Tissot Carson Premium (ref. T122.407.11.033.00)

Tissot Carson Premium (ref. T122.407.11.033.00)

Taking a step back into the world of classical watchmaking, this next timepiece from Tissot presents a familiar formula in a different format. The silver or white dial with black Roman numeral dress watch is not a rare design by any means. Cartier has built their entire product line with this as a central theme to their identity.

Where many of these designs come in rectangular or square cases, there are very few that stick to the standard round case shape. Tissot has done exactly that with this timepiece. The Tissot Carson Premium, ref. T122.407.11.033.00, features a 40mm stainless steel case paired with a 5-link stainless steel bracelet. While having a design that veers heavily into the dress watch category, the round case shape and bracelet give this watch a casual side as well.

The 10.3mm case thickness will be slim enough to slip under almost any cuff, but given its versatility, it may not need to. Coming in at a price of $675, the Tissot Carson is a great option for anyone looking for a more formal design that can play double duty as an everyday wear. 

7. Tissot PRS 516 (ref. T131.430.11.042.00)

Tissot PRS 516 (ref. T131.430.11.042.00)

Now that Tissot is firmly on many enthusiasts’ radars when it comes to value-packed watches, there aren’t many that fall into the category of underrated or undiscovered. This next timepiece is one that genuinely surprises me. It has a history dating back to 1965, a sporty look with a timing bezel, and a robust 100 Meters of water resistance.

Given the value proposition that Tissot is known to bring, the fact that this watch is not talked about more is a shock to me. The Tissot PRS 516, ref. T131.430.11.042.00, features a 42mm stainless steel case with an interchangeable quick-release bracelet.

Several versions of this watch are available, but this particular reference sports a vivid blue dial accented with full Arabic numerals and a pop of red with the signature T-shaped seconds hand. This watch is inspired by classic sports cars, which is evident by the steering wheel design on the sapphire case back of the watch.

As an additional bonus, the watch features a day and date feature, which you don’t see on many Tissot watches. Coming in at a price of $725, I would expect this watch to garner as much, if not more, mainstream attention as some of the other watches on this list.

8. Tissot Chemin des Tourelles (ref. T099.407.16.048.00)

Tissot Chemin des Tourelles (ref. T099.407.16.048.00)

While I have praised many of the traditional examples of Tissot’s dress watch design on this list, there is something about a unique take on the style that I truly appreciate. Think FP Journe as opposed to Breguet. You would be incredibly lucky to own either of these watches, but one does have a more playful side, while the other seems more serious. 

The Tissot Chemin des Tourelles, ref. T099.407.16.048.00, is a 42mm stainless steel dress watch. I know what you’re thinking; 42 mm is way too big for a dress watch! In general, I agree, but this timepiece gets a pass from me. The blue dial on this watch is, simply put, one of the best-looking dress watch dials under $1000.

It absolutely steals the show for this watch, and if your watch is ever going to stand out for its size, you want it to be with a dial like this. The Roman numerals at 3-6-9 give this watch a more casual feel that allows the watch to be worn on more than just formal occasions. Coming in at a price of $775, this might be the closest you can get to a Chronomet Bleu for under $1000.

9. Tissot Tradition Open Heart (ref. T063.907.16.058.00)

Tissot Tradition Open Heart (ref. T063.907.16.058.00)

The magic of what powers the mechanical marvels on our wrists is something that can be enjoyed by all collectors, both new and old. Many watches will offer a see-through caseback allowing the wearer to witness their movements in action. What if you’re the type of person that gets as much enjoyment out of this view as you do the actual dial of the watch? Thankfully Tissot has got you covered.

The Tissot Tradition Open Heart, ref. T063.907.16.058.00, is a 40mm stainless steel watch that features a simple dial and sharp dauphine hands. To break up the simplicity of this dial, Tissot utilizes what is known as an “open heart” dial. There is a cut-out in the front of the dial that allows you to see the escapement of the watch in action while simultaneously being able to wear your watch and tell the time.

This type of dial represents a great middle ground between a skeletonized dial and a traditional layout. The watch is paired with an alligator-style leather strap and features a very slim 9.3mm case thickness. Coming in at $725, this is the quintessential dress watch from Tissot that has a fun party trick built right into the dial.

10. Tissot Heritage Visodate (ref. T118.430.16.271.00)

Tissot Heritage Visodate (ref. T118.430.16.271.00)

Before the success of the PRX and the Gentleman, there was always one watch that achieved mainstream success for Tissot. In many ways, this watch has fallen off collectors’ radar, but it is worth every bit of attention it receives.

The Tissot Heritage Visodate, ref. T118.430.16.271.00, is a 42mm stainless steel watch that recreates the original design from the Visodate of the 1950s. The vintage Tissot logo is present on the dial and helps to give credibility to the vintage design.

The 42mm case dimension roots this watch comfortably as a modern timepiece matching the internal improvements over the original. The Visodate features twisted lugs, which are a nice call back to the time period and complement the aesthetic nicely. 

If you are looking for a watch that has a modern specification and size yet looks like it was produced 60 years ago, you can’t do any better than the Tissot Visodate at $675. 

11. Tissot Ballade (ref. T108.408.22.278.00)

Tissot Ballade (ref. T108.408.22.278.00)

If the Tissot Gentleman is the best affordable alternative to the modern Datejust, this next model from Tissot is the one that gives it a run for its money. The Tissot Ballade, ref. T108.408.22.278.00, features a 41mm stainless steel case with gold PVD fluted bezel and center links on the bracelet.

There is no mistaking the resemblance between this watch and the Rolex it found its inspiration from. The silver opaline dial with guilloche pattern and contrasting gold indices flow together effortlessly and help to give this watch a distinct personality of its own. 

If you’re looking for a watch with as much visual presence as a modern 2-tone Rolex Datejust, you’d be hard-pressed to find anything that does it better than this reference. When you factor in that this watch comes in at a price of $1075, roughly 10% of its Rolex alternative, the value of this watch becomes crystal clear.

12. Tissot Luxury (ref. T086.407.22.097.00)

Tissot Luxury (ref. T086.407.22.097.00)

Versatile watches that can be casual and dressy are a segment of the market that Tissot excels at. When looking at many of the watches on this list, two inspirations become evident for their design. First is the inspiration from other well-established luxury watch brands, and the other is peering back into their historical archives.

This next versatile watch breaks the mold in terms of design and inspiration. The Tissot Luxury, ref. T086.407.22.097.00, is a 41mm stainless steel watch with a gold PVD smooth bezel. The unique construction of the case sees a gold PVD case back and crown united by a stainless steel mid-case that appears to have a weave pattern.

The design is very distinct and helps this watch stand out from the many other watches in the lineup that serve the same purpose. The green stepped dial pops, especially when paired with the matching gold indices to the case.

There is a small strip of PVD gold through the Oyster style bracelet that helps to unify the design of the case and bracelet. This watch is quirky, but at $925, it is a watch that deserves your consideration if you are in the market for a sub $1000 versatile watch.

13. Tissot Gentleman 18K Gold Bezel (ref. T927.407.46.051.00)

Tissot Gentleman 18K Gold Bezel (ref. T927.407.46.051.00)

The Tissot Gentleman is a watch that has already been mentioned on this list but deserves another mention, given the popularity and versatility of the product line. The Tissot Gentleman 18K Gold Bezel, ref. T927.407.46.051.00, features the same 40mm stainless steel case that made the original such a success.

Tissot did something with this model that they very rarely do; they gave this watch an 18k rose gold bezel. Being on the value end of the spectrum, almost anytime you see gold on a Tissot watch, it will come in the form of a gold PVD coating. 

These coatings are excellent alternatives to give the aesthetic of gold at a lower price, but there is something about the feel of real gold. This watch is given matching rose gold indices on a sunray black dial for contrast.

As expected, this version of the Gentleman receives a price bump over the original, now coming in at $1575. Although that is a fairly sizable increase, there are almost no alternatives for a true 2-tone watch in this price range.

14. Tissot PRX 35mm 18K Gold Bezel (ref. T931.207.41.336.00)

Tissot PRX 35mm 18K Gold Bezel (ref. T931.207.41.336.00)

Just when you think Tissot stepped out of their comfort zone with the Gentleman with an 18K gold bezel, this next watch cranks it up to 11. The Tissot PRX 35mm 18K Gold Bezel, ref. T931.207.41.336.00, is a PRX watch with a smaller 35mm stainless steel case with an 18k gold bezel and an integrated steel bracelet.

What really takes this reference to the next level is their use of top Wesselton diamonds for the indices on the gray sunburst dial. The rose gold bezel is complemented by the matching handset and applied logo. This watch is marketed as a lady’s watch, but it’s 2023, so you can wear whatever watch you like.

This watch is anything but subtle, and that’s not something Tissot is necessarily known for. At $1925, this is a fun watch that I could see many couples sharing. I think I might have a gift idea for my next anniversary (if only I could remember when it was!).

15. Tissot Chemin des Tourelles 34mm (ref. T139.

Tissot Chemin des Tourelles 34mm (ref. T139.

Do you remember the days when a 34mm watch was considered the average size for a wristwatch? Yeah, me neither, but that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the watches from the era. The 1950s and 1960s produced millions of classically designed 34mm dress watches that happen to look great on my slender wrist.

While there is no doubt a lot of charm in wearing a watch twice my age, durability has always been a concern. If you find yourself in a similar predicament, Tissot has us covered, and they seemed to do it unintentionally.

The Tissot Chemin des Tourelles 34mm, ref. T139., is a 34mm stainless steel watch with a date function. Much like the 35mm PRX, Tissot has decided to position this watch as a woman’s watch. Sure, the smaller dimension will look great on most women’s wrists, but I think it will also look great on many men’s wrists as well.

The white dial, sharp leaf hands, and the case size look like they were plucked right out of the 1950s. However, the modern Powermatic 80 movement, sapphire crystal, and 50 Meters of water resistance ensure that you won’t need to baby this watch. 

Coming in at a price of $725, you can afford to pick up a couple of distressed leather straps to help play to the watch’s vintage aesthetic. I don’t think that Tissot did this on purpose, but if you are looking for a true vintage-inspired watch with modern specifications, this is the best option under $1000.


There you have it, 15 of the best Tissot Powermatic 80 watches. I am amazed by the amount of variety and value that Tissot can bring to the entry-level luxury market. By having a class-leading powerhouse movement inside, Tissot allows their design to do all the talking.

This is something that I would have never imagined when I first started collecting watches, but Tissot is thriving! Whether you’re looking for the latest hype watch, a capable dive watch, or a classically designed dress watch, Tissot has you covered.

Thanks to their Powermatic 80 beating away flawlessly under the case back, if you’re in the market for a new entry-level luxury watch, you can allow your lifestyle to make a choice for you without worrying if the internals can keep up.

Happy Watch Hunting!

best california dial watches

It’s about this time of year for those of us in the Midwest of the United States that Winter seems to really drag. The sunless days and subzero temps will have you “California Dreamin” like the Mama’s and the Papa’s. What if you could escape the cold gray tundra for the golden coasts of California with a glance of your wrist?

The ever-controversial mix mash of Arabic and Roman numerals may not be enough to physically transport you to a warmer climate. But its unique dial layout may be able to break up the monotony of Winter just the same.

History of California Dials

The history of the California dial is a lot more interesting than what you expect when looking at the quirky Arabic and Roman numeral combo. The 1930s first introduced the dial design as we know it, commonly referred to as the “Error Proof” or “High Visibility” dial.

First utilized by Rolex, the dial layout would become synonymous with Italian tool watchmaker Panerai, a brand you will see throughout this article. What makes this history interesting is less about the actual origin of the dial and more about why we now refer to it as a “California” dial.

Fast forward from the 1930s to the 1980s, and the world of watch collecting began picking up steam. Collectors were drawn to the classic watches of the 1930s-1950s. What separates the 1980s from the current state of vintage watch collecting is our current obsession with originality.

Unpolished cases, patina, and refinished dials were not driving the market prices like they do today. The name of the game in the 1980s was having the most sought-after dial, whether it was original or not. One aspect that does carry through with vintage watch collecting today is the obsession with quirky details. One of these coveted details was that of the “Error Proof” dial.

Although many watch dial refinishers were renowned for their expertise in recreating these dials, Kirk Rich Dial Co became synonymous with the style. So synonymous, in fact, that the California dial nickname is based on the location of their facility in, you guessed it, California. You can think of them as the Bamford Watch Company of their day.

Should You Buy a California Dial?

Despite having a unique origin story and appearance, the California dial is not for everyone.  Although having a self-confessed soft spot for vintage recreations, I recently warmed up to the uniqueness of the California dial. Should you buy a watch with a California dial? That’s going to be completely up to you! 

There are some great options, 10 of which we will look at in this article, but if you instinctually give these watches a confused look, you’re not alone. If you are not repulsed by the dial, you need to give one of these watches a try! They’re different and unintentionally fun in a no-nonsense kind of way. Let’s take a look at 10 of the best watches with California dials.

The Best Watches With California Dials

1. Rolex Viceroy Radium (ref. 3116)

Rolex Viceroy Radium (ref. 3116)

There is no better place to begin than with Rolex. The luxury Swiss brand is credited with trademarking the “Error Proof”, later nicknamed “California’ dial in 1941. The first known references from the brand to feature the unique dial layout were released during World War II. One of the most revered models is that of the Viceroy Radium, ref. 3116.

These models come in a very modest 31mm case in various metals. The case features the elongated shape of the later released “bubble back’ automatic models, despite being powered by a manually winding movement. This model was available in several dial configurations, the rarest of which being the error-proof. 

Due to the rarity of original error-proof dials, this style of Rolex was commonly the victim of the previously mentioned redial from the likes of Kirk Rich Dial Co or other prominent refinishers of the time. Due to the rarity of the model, pricing this model can be difficult. My advice, if you see one, and can afford it, just get it!

2. Panerai Radiomir 1936 (ref. PAM00249)

Panerai Radiomir 1936 (ref. PAM00249)

Despite not owning the California dial patent, Panerai is synonymous with its current utilization. This list will be admittedly Panerai heavy, but given the brand’s history and current lineup, there was no other way around this. If you like the look of vintage military-inspired watches with a clean aesthetic and modern sizing, Panerai is the brand for you.

Leading the charge from Panerai will be the Radiomir 1936, ref. PAM00249. The Radiomir style features distinct wire lugs, sporting a very Panerai 47mm stainless steel case and manually-winding movement. The dial features a clean black dial and California dial and handset in an aged radium color. This 1936-piece limited edition was originally released in 2006. 

Despite the 1936 namesake on this watch, there is some debate whether this watch originally featured a California-style dial at this time due to the Rolex Patent for the design not occurring until 1941. Regardless of the controversy, this may be the cleanest execution of this dial layout and well worth the roughly $9000-$10000 price they can be purchased for.

3. Tudor Prince Date-Day California Dial (ref. 76200)

Tudor Prince Date-Day California Dial (ref. 76200)

Rolex is not the only Hans Wilsdorf founded company to produce a California dial throughout the years. Tudor has been producing similarly designed watches at more affordable prices to their older brother since their original release in 1946 (20 years after Hans Wilsdorf registered the trademark back in 1926).

Although many of their designs are heavily inspired by the folks at Rolex, they usually have some slight variances to keep things interesting. This is definitely the case with one of their most popular utilizations of the California dial.

The Tudor Prince Date-Day California dial, ref. 76200, is reminiscent of a few different Rolex models. The functionality and name are heavily inspired by the Rolex Day-Date. The Dial pulls from the Viceroy model we mentioned earlier while having a cleaner and sportier appearance with the Mercedes handset.

This watch is powered by an off-the-shelf ETA 2834-2 movement in true Tudor spirit. If you are looking for a watch that embodies the true purpose of Tudor, as seen by Hans Wilsdorf, the Tudor Prince Date Day with California dial for roughly $3000-$5000 is a great option to consider.

4. Panerai Radiomir California 3 Days 47mm (ref. PAM00448)

Panerai Radiomir California 3 Days 47mm (ref. PAM00448)

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: a 47mm stainless steel case Panerai Radiomir with a manual winding movement and a clean California dial on a black dial. Without a doubt, Panerai is not a brand known for producing wild designs aimed at wowing us year after year.

If you think Rolex is boring and moves at a glacial speed, you haven’t seen anything yet. Like all great collector items, the devil is in the details, and this next model from Panerai is no different.

The Panerai Radiomir California 3-day, ref. PAM00448, is cosmetically very similar to the other Panerai watches on this list. However, what separates this watch from the pack is on the inside. The P.3000 movement by Panerai features a 3-day power reserve to add functionality to the simple design.

The movement is beautifully finished to match the aesthetic to the functionality that the added power reserve provides. If you are looking for the timeless Panerai design with a beautiful and functional movement to match, the PAM00448 from Panerai for $7500-$8500 is a great watch to consider.

5. Nomos Glashütte Club Campus

Nomos Glashütte Club Campus

If you love the idea of a California dial but can’t quite get behind the idea of a vintage-inspired timepiece, Nomos Glashütte has your back. Nomos is a relatively new brand, dating back to 1990, but they have made a tremendous impact since their introduction.

Known best for their modern take on the Bauhaus design, Nomos has taken the California dial and modernized it in a way only Nomos can do. The Nomos Club Campus is the entry point into the brand. They have several color iterations, case sizes, and material options to allow you to really pick the watch that fits your needs and personal style.

My favorite feature of this watch is its unique take on a California dial by switching the orientation of Arabic and Roman numerals from the traditional options available. It is choices like this that give Nomos their fun identity and help differentiate them from other brands available today. Starting at $1500, the Nomos Club Campus is some of the most fun you can have in this hobby, whether you want a California dial or not.

6. Panerai Radiomir California 47mm (ref. PAM00931)

Panerai Radiomir California 47mm (ref. PAM00931)

As mentioned earlier, Panerai is going to be featured a few times on this list. If you like what Panerai did with the PAM00448 but wish they leaned even heavier into the vintage aesthetic, this watch might be exactly what you were looking for. The Panerai Radiomir California, ref. PAM00931, shares many similarities with the previously mentioned PAM00448.

The 47mm stainless steel case, wire lugs, and P.3000 Hand winding movement with a 3-day power reserve are consistent between these two models. Even the simple, clean layout and California dial remain virtually identical between the two models. The difference here is in the color of the dial and the feeling it evokes. 

While the PAM00448 features a traditional black dial, the PAM00931 sports a honey-colored fume dial that gives the appearance of a dial that has been exposed to the elements for decades.

The watches are very similar, but the feeling they evoke is completely different. If you are looking to spend roughly $6000-$7000 on a California dial watch and want something that leans heavily into vintage inspiration, this watch might be for you.

7. RPaige “Barrage”

There is no shortage of Micro or Independent brands on the market today for watch enthusiasts. Several of these brands were conceived by savvy entrepreneurs eager to capitalize on the growing market. Some of these brands were started by passionate enthusiasts.

However, few of these brands were created by as passionate enthusiasts as Richard Paige. Richard Paige is a 4th generation watchmaker and founder of Timezone.com. Yes, the watch forum that changed the way enthusiasts engage with one another. 

The RPaige Barrage is a limited edition of 50 watches featuring a 44mm stainless steel case and Panerai-inspired black dial with aged radium California dial. What separates these watches from others in the market is their use of repurposed pocket watch movements housed with new cases and dials. This model features either a 15 or 17-jewel Waltham or Elgin American pocket watch movement.

For anyone lucky enough to have seen one of these movements in person, the amount of finishing and detail on these antique rivals that of almost any current Swiss movement in production today. Coming in at a price of $2400, the RPaige Barrage is a timeless design with a unique value proposition that you simply can’t get from the big boys in this space.

8. Panerai Luminor California 8 Days (ref. PAM00779)

Panerai Luminor California 8 Days (ref. PAM00779)

I know, another Panerai! Hear me out; this one is completely different! As much as I love the vintage appeal of the Panerai Radiomir, this next model utilizes the more modern Luminor case and is my favorite of the bunch. The Panerai Luminor California 8-day, ref. PAM00779 features a hefty 44mm case size made of DLC-coated titanium to help with the everyday wearability of this piece.

The Luminor case shape is more closely associated with Panerai and helps to give the watch a robust and masculine look. This watch features the enhanced P.5000 hand-wound mechanical movement providing an impressive 8-day power reserve.

The classic black dial and aged radium California dial and handset provide a familiar vintage aesthetic to help offset the modernity of the case. If you are looking for a modern interpretation of a California dial from the brand most synonymous with the look, the PAM00779 Luminor for roughly $8500 is a great option to consider.

9. Ralf Tech Academie California Bronze

Ralf Tech Academie California Bronze

The worlds of professional diving and watchmaking are often intertwined. You’d be hard-pressed to find a watch enthusiast who doesn’t appreciate the functionality of a good dive watch, regardless of whether or not they would ever use it to its full potential. Ralf Tech is a great example of this intertwining. 

Originally founded in 1996, producing diving equipment for professionals, Ralf Tech began to focus much of its attention on watchmaking in 2003, ultimately leading to this being their sole product line in 2008. Since then, Ralf Tech has been bringing some of the most robust watches available, even venturing beyond the comforts of dive watches.

The Ralf Tech Acadamie is a 41mm case manufactured out of bronze. This unique case material will age over time and give your timepiece a unique appearance mere months after removing the stickers. This look is not for everyone, but given the vintage aesthetic of the California dial and gilt lettering with aged radium-colored lume, this watch will look more at home once the shine dulls a little bit. 

The Academie range is powered by an automatic mechanical movement and comes paired with a vintage-styled leather strap. If you are looking for a new California dial watch that will age with you, the Ralf Tech Academie California in bronze for roughly $2400 is a watch you should strongly consider.

10. Serica 4512 California

Serica 4512 California

Serica is a Microbrand that has taken the watch world by storm. Since its inception in 2019, Serica watches have been recognized for their incredible quality, unique designs, and affordable pricing. In many ways, these three features are the blueprint that any Microbrand should follow if they are aiming to be successful. Even with all 3 of these qualities, very few brands will skyrocket as quickly as Serica.

The Serica 4512 with a California dial features a very wearable 38mm stainless steel case with a straight-end link Bonklip bracelet. The lacquered black dial and California dial bypass the commonly used aged luminova for a crisp white giving the appearance of a watch from the 1950s that found a way to evade aging for the last 70 years. 

The broad arrow hand is reminiscent of those found on early Omega Speedmasters while maintaining their own identity. The watch is powered by the STP1-11 Swiss automatic movement, and it’s priced at a very reasonable $615. If you are looking for a quality Microbrand offering a unique design for a fraction of the price of others on this list, the Serica 4512 California is the route I would go.


There you have it, 10 of the best watches to feature a California dial. The California dial will not appeal to everyone, and that’s OK. Our brains spend a tremendous amount of energy trying to put things into defined categories. Safe or dangerous, boy or girl, Arabic or Roman numerals.

These categories can serve us well at times while simultaneously limiting our ability to see in between the lines. If Arabic and Roman numerals can coexist on a watch dial, perhaps there is a world where other categories don’t have to be as set as we previously believed. 

There was a time when even the biggest fan of California dials had to do a double-take. Something that falls outside our defined categories can be hard to accept at first, but once you look at it for what it is, the uniqueness is the appeal. After all, a watch dial is just a dial; it doesn’t have to look like all the others to tell the time.

Happy Watch Hunting!

Best omega seamaster References

One of the first brands many watch enthusiasts discover in this incredible journey of watch collecting is Omega. Whether your discovery occurs as a natural progression or simply a search for “Best Rolex Alternatives”, few brands can match the experience and product offering that Omega can.

They have some of the most iconic timepieces to their credit, from the space-dwelling Omega Speedmaster to the versatile master of town, sea, and country Omega Seamaster. 

Despite the undeniable history and legacy of the Omega Speedmaster, I have always been more of a Seamaster fan myself. The versatility of the collection and its ability to be appropriate for any situation have made these watches the grail of many watch collectors.

History of Omega Seamaster

The Omega Seamaster began in 1948 as the 100th anniversary of the brand. Initially built off the success of simple time-only watches of World War II, these watches featured the same robust construction and caliber 30T2 architecture but housed in a more elegant design.

They could still tackle any environment from town, sea, and country, but their ability to serve as a dive watch wouldn’t come until almost a decade later, in 1957. The Omega Seamaster 300 and Omega Seamaster Railmaster, released in 1957, would come to identify the range through to the current collection.

Omega continued to release bezel-free watches that offered unique colors and functionality, from time only to world timers and virtually everything in between. The Aqua Terra, originally released in 2002, based heavily on the Seamaster 120 from years previous, is the current execution of the original Seamaster line. They are robust, capable, and distinctly classy.

The 1950s and 1960s saw the Mil-Spec design aesthetic of the Seamaster 300 that defined many watches of the era. The 1970s would see the introduction of the Ploprof 600, a saturation-capable monstrosity that was over-engineered and competed head-to-head with the Rolex Sea-Dweller. 

The 1980s was a weird time for the Seamaster and Omega in general. Omega focused on quartz technology and not so subtly took some design cues from their main competitor Rolex. Thankfully for Omega, and all watch enthusiasts, the 1990s were a return to form for Omega, who found great success with their Bond partnership and the Seamaster Diver 300 that accompanied it and remains the basis of design for their current lineup.

In addition to the current flagship offering, the current Seamaster has a line of divers capable of saturation diving. First with the quirky Ploprof, mentioned earlier, and most recently with the more subdued Planet Ocean line of divers. Fortunately for those of us who adore the vintage aesthetic from their dive heritage, Omega also has a Seamaster 300 line that pulls from the 1950s design with modern specifications.

Omega Seamaster Characteristics

Many of the timepieces we see today in the Seamaster collection would fall firmly into the dive watch category. However, some modern timepieces harken back to the original design identity of those bezel-free beauties. The true value of the current collection comes in the sheer variety available for consumers. 

Pick your color, style, functionality, and even historical inspiration. Omega most likely has a Seamaster to fit your needs (if not, just give it a few more years; Omega has no problem milking this cash cow, rightfully so!). Although no official requirement exists, the original Omega Seamaster mantra for town, sea, and country best summarizes the collection.

These watches are versatile everyday pieces that, despite leaning casual or sporty, won’t look out of place in almost any environment. Now that we know a little more about the history and variety available let’s take a look at 15 of the best examples of Omega Seamaster watches. With the variety available within the lineup, this list was harder to put together than I expected. 

The Best Omega Seamasters

1. Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (ref.

Omega Seamaster Diver 300M (ref.

Why not kick this list off with the modern interpretation of what many people think when they hear Seamaster. The Omega Seamaster Diver 300M is the current offering of the brand’s most iconic watch within the lineup.

After the success of the Bond partnership initially seen on the wrist of Pierce Brosnan in the Goldeneye blockbuster of 1995, this general design was cemented as one of the many iconic models within the Omega brand. The Omega Seamaster Diver 300M, ref. features a 42m stainless steel case with the iconic wave motif laser etched into a blue ceramic dial.

Matching the dial is the blue ceramic bezel insert, giving this watch a similar color combination to the original but in a very modern luxurious way. As the name implies, this watch provides a 300M water resistance thanks in part to its love-it-or-hate-it helium escape valve.

This Seamaster is powered by the METAS-Certified in-house caliber 8800, featuring a Co-Axial escapement and free-sprung balance with a silicon balance spring that provides a 15,000-gauss magnetic resistance. Coming in at $5600 on the stainless steel bracelet, this example represents one of the most affordable and iconic examples of the illustrious Seamaster line.

2. Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra (ref.

Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra (ref.

The Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra is, in many ways, the modern interpretation of the original Seamaster DNA. Before the release of the Seamaster with a rotatable bezel aimed at professional divers, the Seamaster was an everyday watch.

A reliable movement, simple design, and robust construction helped to separate the original Seamaster from the competition. The Aqua Terra does the same thing, albeit with some more luxurious touches. The Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra, ref. features a 41mm stainless steel case with a stainless steel bracelet.

Although available in several color iterations, the black dial with a teak pattern provides the clearest example of this model range. The twisted lugs and arrow minute hand help to give the bezel-less design a sportier look and feel. 

The 150M of water resistance and robust caliber 8900 ensure this watch is up to almost any task you can throw at it. In the world of versatile watches, few can compete with the Aqua Terra. Coming in at a price of $5900, these watches offer a very compelling option to anyone on the hunt for the “one watch collection”. 

3. Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M (ref.

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M (ref.

The Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean is a great example of modern specification melding perfectly with vintage design cues. The 600M of water resistance ensures that this model line can accompany you on any adventure you can throw its way. What really helps this watch stand out, however, is its subtle nod to the past. 

This watch is by no means a vintage re-edition, but several easter eggs are sprinkled throughout the design. The broad arrow handset and Arabic numerals on the dial are reminiscent of the original 1957 Seamaster 300, while the ceramic bezel and helium escape valve are very modern features borrowed from the previously mentioned Omega Seamaster Diver 300M.

The Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M (ref. features a 43.5mm stainless steel case with a stainless steel bracelet. The black dial is accented with pops of orange in the numerals and second hand, which also carry over to the first 15 minutes of the ceramic bezel insert.

The helium escape valve is still a marmite feature in the Omega Seamaster collection, but it does feel slightly more appropriate on a watch boasting 600-meter water resistance. 

The caliber 8900 in this watch matches the functionality on the outside with the 15,000-gauss magnetic resistance and free-sprung balance.

There is a slight premium of $6700 over the standard Seamaster Diver 300M, but given the extra specification and prices of rival Rolex’s Sea-Dweller line, the watch provides a lot of value for the money. 

4. Omega Seamaster “No Time To Die” (ref.

Omega Seamaster “No Time To Die” (ref.

In the watch world, few endorsements carry as much weight as that of Mr. Bond, James Bond. The Omega Seamaster has been the watch brand of choice for Bond since the 1995 Goldeneye release, and since then, there has been no shortage of limited editions to commemorate the partnership.

The latest iteration of this partnership has undoubtedly struck a chord, not just with Bond fans but with watch enthusiasts in general. The Omega Seamaster “No Time To Die” (ref. features the same size and case shape as the standard Omega Seamaster Diver 300M but is housed in grade 2 titanium while sporting a modern caliber 8806 movement.

The watch is paired with a mesh titanium bracelet that features an adjustable buckle. The true showstopper for this watch is the vintage aesthetic. Where Omega generally leans into the modern aesthetic with the Diver 300M line, this watch looks like it was plucked right out of the 1950s. The Bond branding is subtle, featuring a British MOD arrow and an inscription on the back of the watch.

This watch will set you back $9500, which is a fairly substantial premium over the standard model. But, given the innovative case material, unique design, and Bond partnership, this watch is worthy of the price. 

5. Omega Seamaster 300 (ref.

Omega Seamaster 300 (ref.

Sticking with the vintage-inspired theme, let’s look at the Omega Seamaster 300, ref. This model is based on the Omega Seamaster introduced in 1957 alongside the Railmaster and Speedmaster collections.

The current model features a 41mm stainless steel case powered by the time-only caliber 8912. A couple of color variations are available for this model, but the black dial with a matching black bezel stays true to the original design. 

The dial sports a healthy amount of “fauxtina” on the hands, indices, and Arabic numerals. The color has been matched on the anodized aluminum bezel insert, which helps give this timepiece a cohesive vintage aesthetic.

Coming in at $6700 on the stainless steel bracelet, this watch features much of what the “No Time to Die” offers in a smaller and more historically accurate package. 

Although this watch will ultimately appeal to a different type of collector than many of the more modern designs, you will have the same construction and specification as any Seamaster in the current lineup. 

6. Omega Seamaster Railmaster (ref.

Omega Seamaster Railmaster (ref.

As mentioned earlier, 1957 was a big year for Omega. Omega redefined their collection by releasing the Seamaster 300 and Speedmaster while introducing another new product line to the trilogy. The third and often overlooked model in that trilogy is the Omega Seamaster Railmaster.

The Railmaster line was originally introduced as a timepiece for engineers, much like the original Milgauss from Rolex. The Omega Seamaster Railmaster, ref., is a modern interpretation of this original design ethos. The anti-magnetic properties that helped distinguish this product line from the other 3 hand models of the day are still present (as it is with any modern Omega Seamaster) thanks to the caliber 8806.

The 40mm stainless steel case is a more modern case size but still carries the everyday wearability of the original. The Railmaster dial and handset have a “fauxtina” appearance drawing upon the vintage inspiration, while the dial itself in charcoal gray features a unique dial pattern that leans into the modern aesthetic and build quality.

Coming in at a price of $5200, this watch presents a great entry point into the world of Omega that perfectly blends where they have been with where they are now.

7. Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Chronograph (ref.

Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Chronograph (ref.

When comparing complications for tool watches, many people are torn between the timing dive bezel and the chronograph function. Both of these complications provide extra functionality and help to give a timepiece a unique look. Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it too? Omega has provided several examples of these diving chronographs, perhaps none better than what they provide in their current collection.

The Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Chronograph, ref., is a beefed-up 44mm stainless steel watch that features much of the design language of the standard Diver 300M. The ceramic dial and bezel and dial with wave motif are both present, as is the helium escape valve.

What helps this watch stand out is the chronograph function made possible by the caliber 9900. This movement provides many of the features we have come to expect with current Omega movements and adds the functionality of a column wheel chronograph. 

Amazingly this watch still features a 300M water resistance, which is especially impressive when you consider the chronograph Omega is most known for is only rated for 50M. If you are looking for a very robust and functional chronograph watch, this Omega for $8100 is one of the best options available from any brand. 

8. Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra GMT “GoodPlanet” (ref.

Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra GMT “GoodPlanet” (ref.

If the dive bezel and chronograph aren’t quite your cup of tea, but you still want something more than a time-only design, Omega still has something for you. The Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra GMT “GoodPlanet”, ref., is a 43mm grade 5 titanium watch with a crisp white dial and blue hands and indices.

As the name suggests, this Aqua Terra has a little trick up its sleeve and that comes thanks to the caliber 8605 and its “traveler style” GMT functionality. This movement allows for the changing of the hour hand without stopping the minutes or seconds hands.

Although this feature is not a requirement for a GMT watch, it is often seen as the more elegant style of GMT functionality. The partnership with GoodPlanet, which aids in environmental conservation, ensures you can feel as good about your purchase of $10,800 as the watch will look on your wrist. 

9. Omega Seamaster Olympic Official Timekeeper (ref. 522.

Omega Seamaster Olympic Official Timekeeper (ref. 522.

When it comes to precision timekeeping, there are few requirements as stringent as the Olympic Games. The difference between a medal and not can often be determined by mere fractions of a second. Since 1932 this responsibility has fallen on the shoulders of Omega.

They have only continued to perfect their craft in the time since, and their latest 2,032-piece limited edition is evidence of this fact. The Omega Seamaster Olympic Official Timekeeper, ref. 522., sports a 39.5mm bezel-free stainless steel case. The black dial is surrounded by a wide white chapter ring with blue accents on the dial as well as a matching blue seconds hand.

This watch is inspired by the more colorful examples from the late 1960s and 1970s, such as the Dynamic range. Powering this movement is the very capable caliber 8800. If you are looking for a more adventurous design from some of the others on this list, at $5,600, this Seamaster is a great option to go with whether you’re a fan of the Olympics or not. 

10. Omega Seamaster 1948 (ref. 511.

Omega Seamaster 1948 (ref. 511.

When the Seamaster was originally released in 1948, the design was more reminiscent of what we consider a dress watch by today’s standards. Despite its robustness for the time, the simple center seconds or sub seconds models are very classically designed.

These early vintage examples have been a great entryway into the Omega Seamaster line for many watch enthusiasts that appreciate the aesthetic and can rock a 33mm-35mm timepiece. In 2018, Omega decided to reintroduce these original models while making some concessions to appease modern tastes.

The Omega Seamaster 1948, ref. 511., features a beefed-up 38mm stainless steel case based on the center seconds model released in 1948. The dial, except for the “Co-Axial Master Chronometer” text, is a nearly identical match to the original it is paying homage to.

As the writing on the dial indicates, the Co-Axial caliber 8806 takes the specification of this watch well into the modern era. The thick lugs, knurled crown, and an etched crystal, now made of modern sapphire, help keep the original design’s charm while providing all of the enhancements the last 70 years have provided. 

Coming in at a price of $6600, this Seamaster is a considerable amount more than the originals from 70 years previous. But, given the modern specification and historically accurate charm, this Seamaster is one of the best vintage reeditions from any brand.

11. Omega Seamaster Bullhead Chronograph (ref.

Omega Seamaster Bullhead Chronograph (ref.

When looking at the current Omega Seamaster lineup, few watches truly stand out from others in the lineup. That is in no way taking away from the design language of the Seamaster, simply pointing out the fact that besides some minor quirks like the helium escape valve, the Seamaster line is a modern example of traditional watch design.

That wasn’t always the case for Omega. They were once known for some truly unique designs that did anything but played it safe. The first of these we will look at is a recreation of the 1969 chronograph that literally turned the watch world on its head.

The Omega Seamaster Bullhead Chronograph, ref., is a modern interpretation of the original 1969 Bullhead Chronograph that came to define the style. Coming in at 43mm X 43mm and housed in a stainless steel case, this watch is not one that will go unnoticed. 

The unique placement of the crowns and pushers really sets this watch apart. The placement at the top and bottom serves two functions. First, it allows the user to activate the chronograph pushers while in a more natural position for reading the time, and second, it improves the wearability on the wrist. This watch is powered by a caliber 3113 with Co-Axial escapement and a 52-hour power reserve.

With the addition of an internal rotatable bezel, this watch is as functional as it is funky. Although limited to 669 pieces, a low number by Omega limited-edition standards and lack of availability brand new, this once $9600 timepiece can be had for even less if you’re willing to let someone else put the first few scratches on it.

12. Omega Seamaster Ploprof 1200M (ref.

Omega Seamaster Ploprof 1200M (ref.

When looking at quirky models within the Omega Seamaster line, one watch stands above the rest. The Omega Ploprof was originally developed back in 1971 after 3 years of prototypes to help design a watch capable of reaching 600M.

The Monoblock stainless steel case, an extra thick crystal, and unique bezel locking mechanism were engineered so meticulously that they would not even allow the tiny helium molecules to enter the watch and present challenges after decompression. 

Unfortunately for Omega, Rolex built upon their Submariner lineup and made some slight enhancements, including a simple helium escape system that made for a safe method for helium to enter and exit the watch, effectively solving the problem in a much simpler way.

That doesn’t mean this Omega Seamaster Ploprof isn’t one incredible piece of kit, though! The Omega Seamaster Ploprof 1200M, ref., is the modern interpretation of this iconic design. The case shape, with its unique bezel lock and crown guard system, remains, as does the signature mesh bracelet.

The case measures in at an eye-watering 55mm X 48mm, but thanks to the grade 5 titanium of the case and grade 2 of the bracelet the watch comes in at 172 grams. Despite the large dimension, this watch is surprisingly wearable for those with above-average wrists.

The depth rating has been doubled from the original 600M to a very impressive 1200M. The watch is powered by the caliber 8912, ensuring that the functionality on the outside of this Ploprof is matched by what’s on the inside. Coming in at a price of $12,600, this absolute spec monster provides exceptional functionality with a design that is all its own.

13. Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 6000M (ref.

Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 6000M (ref.

Just when you think 1200M is overkill, Omega comes out and releases a watch that makes that look like a dip in the pool. The race to the bottom between Rolex and Omega has been well documented. But, in a nutshell, these two brands can’t help but produce watches that one up the other regardless of their practical significance to the end user.

In 2019, Omega dealt their latest blow in the form of a commercially available watch that can reach 6000M. The Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 6000M, ref., is a 45.5mm timepiece made out of O-Megasteel that has been over-engineered in almost every way to help it achieve the 6000M depth rating.

The case and crystal are thicker, coming in at 18.1mm, but thanks to the wider case, it is still wearable for those with larger wrists. The watch is powered by the reliable caliber 8912. The real surprise with this watch is that it ultimately looks like any other Planet Ocean model, minus the helium escape valve.

For $12,000, Omega managed to do something they could not do when their Ploprof lost to the Sea-Dweller; they refined rather than reinvent the wheel.

14. Omega Seamaster 300 Spectre Limited Edition (ref.

Omega Seamaster 300 Spectre Limited Edition (ref.

Omega has proven several things about watch marketing with its Omega Seamaster collection. One of those is the power of partnerships, and the other is that people appreciate vintage design cues. Thankfully for us, those two marketing principles are not mutually exclusive.

Omega was able to prove this with their 2015 limited edition of the Bond franchise. The Omega Seamaster 300 Spectre Limited Edition, ref., is a 41mm stainless steel timepiece that follows the design aesthetic from the original 1957 Seamaster 300 and is powered by the Co-Axial caliber 8400.

The major difference is the 12-hour timing bezel that helped to give this vintage-inspired timepiece a new look and functionality. This 7007-piece limited edition is the watch worn by Mr. Bond during the blockbuster movie Spectre. 

This timepiece has long sold out but can still be found pre-owned for roughly $10,000, representing an intriguing option for any Bond or Omega enthusiast.

15. Omega Seamaster Professional 300M (ref. 2531.80.00)

Omega Seamaster Professional 300M (ref. 2531.80.00)

While putting together this list of great Seamaster watches, one thing stood out to me. Many of these watches wouldn’t be here without the great designs in Omega’s historical archives. The 1950s and 1960s developed Omega’s traditional design language, while the 1970s gave us some of the quirky designs that helped break Omega out of that shell.

It wasn’t until the mid-1990s that those two sides of Omega truly blended and gave us a unique design language that felt more traditional and less quirky. The Omega Seamaster Professional 300M, ref. 2531.80.00, although not the very first reference to bear this design, is the watch many people think of when they hear Omega Seamaster.

The cameo in Goldeneye and the N64 classic video game that accompanied it proved that partnerships, when done correctly, can work! The watch became an overnight success and still remains popular among us nostalgia-chasing watch enthusiasts who remember the countless hours wasted with friends battling for Bond supremacy.

The watch itself features a 41mm stainless steel case with an aluminum bezel insert. Although available in a few color iterations, the blue dial and blue bezel is the true icon. The wave motif and skeletonized sword hands are present and very reminiscent of the models in the current lineup.

This watch featured the caliber 1120, based on the ETA 2892. It may not feature many of the great enhancements of their current Co-Axial range, but it is a reliable and beautiful movement nonetheless. The preowned market has been steadily increasing for this model, but you can expect to pay roughly $3000 for a good example. Considering the history and design, this is a watch I could picture saying, “I wish I bought it when I could”.


There you have it, 15 of the best Omega Seamaster references. With so much variety in the product line, it is hard to believe that all of these options bear the Seamaster branding. Whether you are looking for a time-tested icon or simply a great everyday piece to accompany you on any adventure, the Omega Seamaster has the option to satisfy your needs. 

Thankfully, unlike their main competitor Rolex, you’ll even have the opportunity to go to an Authorized Dealer and try a few on. Regardless of which model you settle on, the Omega Seamaster is definitely worthy of at least 1 spot in any watch box. 

Happy watch hunting!

tudor ranger

This past year has been an exciting time in the watch market. There have been Rolex bubbles popping, MoonSwatch release flopping, and new Tudor watches dropping (highlighted with a Ric Flair woooo!)! What an exciting time to be a watch enthusiast. The Rolex market and MoonSwatch release have been covered ad nauseam, but what about Tudor?

There has certainly been no shortage of fanfare for Tudor this year. They have gone from strength to strength, releasing the new Black Bay Pro and Tudor Pelagos 39. These new models have waitlists more in line with their older brother Rolex. There is another release that Tudor managed to sneak in this year. 

That, of course, is the new Tudor Ranger.

The new Ranger didn’t receive the same universal admiration that Tudor received with their other key releases this year. In fact, I would say that this watch falls comfortably into the category of a marmite watch. 

Tudor Ranger- What It Is, Where It’s Been, and What It Is Today

When I first got into watches in 2016, the original Tudor Ranger heritage release was a close contender for my first luxury timepiece. The model featured the iconic 12-3-6-9 Ranger design, but was a little big, had a straight-end link bracelet, and didn’t feature one of Tudor’s new in-house movements. 

Ultimately, I compromised on the in-house movement and purchased a newly released Tudor Black Bay 36. Try as I might, I could never get the Ranger out of my mind. If only they tweaked it a little bit, this watch would be perfect.

Fast forward to 2020, and the Ranger quietly fell out of the Tudor catalog. My ears perked up in the excitement of what the next few releases from Tudor could bring us. The vintage watch craze was far from over, and the Rolex Explorer, especially the 36mm, had never been as popular as it was.

It took a couple of years, but in 2022 Tudor finally rereleased (or re-rereleased) the Tudor Ranger. As the rumor mill started to catch fire in the weeks before its official release, I started preparing my beloved Tudor Black Bay 36 for the inevitable auction site listing.

I knew this watch was going to take my watch-collecting journey full circle and allow me to finally get the timepiece that initially captured my attention on my wrist and out of my mind. Well, 6 months down the road, and I still have my Black Bay 36.

In fact, I never even put my name on the list at my local Tudor AD to register my interest. How could this happen? How could a watch that was supposed to be the one miss the mark so badly? Honestly, Tudor didn’t miss the mark at all! They delivered everything I was hoping for.

They even gave me some features I didn’t even know I would need back in 2016, such as the T-fit clasp. Let’s take a deep dive into the new Tudor Ranger and see if we can identify exactly why I don’t have one on my wrist while writing this review.

What Is the Tudor Ranger?

The Tudor Ranger is an everyday field watch, commonly referred to today as a GADA (Go Anywhere Do Anything) style of watch. The 12-3-6-9 dial is reminiscent of the iconic Rolex Explorer, and in many ways, this watch fills a similar place in any watch collection. 

The Tudor Ranger could quite easily be your one and only watch. Its monochromatic design allows it to be dressed up or down, and you would be hard-pressed to find a situation outside of formal black-tie events where this watch would look out of place. Since you are reading this article, I am confident you’re not very interested in one-watch collections. 

In that case, the Tudor Ranger could fill almost any hole in your watch box. That is the beauty of a timepiece like this. The only factor limiting your ability to wear this watch will be the envy of the other watches in your collection.

History of the Tudor Ranger

In many ways, the history of the Tudor Ranger mirrors that of the Rolex Explorer. Rolex introduced its iconic Rolex Explorer to commemorate Sir Edmund Hilary’s conquest of Mt. Everest in 1953. By the 1960s, Tudor released the Tudor Ranger with a similar dial layout, albeit in a 34mm case size as opposed to the 36mm of the Explorer. 

Much like the inspiration of Everest to the Explorer, the Tudor Ranger can tie its inspiration to the 1952 British North Greenland Expedition. This latest iteration of the Tudor Ranger commemorates the 70th anniversary of this Greenland Expedition and the Tudor Prince Ref. 7909 that accompanied them. 

Whether the Tudor Ranger was conceived as a simple cost-conscious alternative to the Rolex Explorer or truly has an iconic origin story as unique as the Rolex is up for debate. One thing that is not up for debate is that the Tudor Ranger has come in significantly more variants than its iconic bigger brother since its 1960s debut. 

The initial offering was very similar to the Explorer, featuring the 12-3-6-9 printed numerals on a black dial housed in a 34mm case diameter. The Ref. 7995 from 1965 featured these characteristics along with the signature arrow shape hand to give the Ranger a unique look. A date model was later introduced to this model to further differentiate it from the Rolex Explorer.

The 1970s took this rather ordinary design and gave it a bit of that 1970s pizazz! The black dial was replaced with blues and oranges, more representative of the time, while the typical Oyster bracelet was replaced by a more contemporary integrated bracelet. 

These Ranger II models later gave inspiration to the quirky Tudor North Flag. A recently discontinued model, that introduced Tudor’s new In-House movement and featured a pop of color and integrated stainless-steel bracelet. 

Fast forward to 2014, and the Tudor Ranger was ready for a rerelease. After the success of the Tudor Black Bay and Heritage Chrono, Tudor released a new Tudor Ranger. This new iteration featured the iconic dial and hands, a 41mm stainless steel case with a straight-end bracelet, and was powered by the ETA 2824 movement. 

Despite seeing some success initially, this watch failed to see the popularity of the Black Bay line for Tudor. In 2016, Tudor released the Black Bay 36, ultimately proving to be one of the nails in the coffin for the Ranger. With this release, Tudor remedied many of the common complaints watch enthusiasts, myself included, could not look past with the Ranger. 

The size at 41mm was simply too big for a time-only watch beyond 2014. This may have been the trend in the 2000s, but we were already on our way back to more modest watch sizing by the time the Ranger hit the market. The Ranger Heritage slowly withered away until 2020, when Tudor quietly removed this watch from their lineup.

2022 Tudor Ranger Review

The new Tudor Ranger, Ref. 79950, packs a significant punch when it comes to value for money. Few watch brands can provide the value Tudor can, and they may have out “Tudored” themself with this release. Let’s take a look at how.


The new Tudor Ranger featured a 39mm stainless-steel case. A welcomed downsize from the previous generation. This size reduction is enhanced when factoring in the significantly wider fixed steel bezel giving the illusion of an even smaller diameter. 

This case size was not by mistake as it pleases several wrist sizes and also allows Tudor to provide a solution for people displeased with the recent downsizing of the Rolex Explorer from 39mm to 36mm.

The case finishing on the Ranger is done impeccably well at this price point and features a mostly satin-brushed appearance. There are subtle polishing areas along the edge of the bezel, but the overall finishing is more in line with a Tudor Pelagos than that of a Black Bay. 

The watch also features a screw-down crown helping it achieve 100m of water resistance and a domed sapphire crystal to help protect it from scratches. Tudor hit it out of the park with this case, as the finishing fits the field watch aesthetic perfectly. 

Dial and Hands

The dial on the new Ranger is one of the most divisive characteristics of this watch. The printed numerals give off a very flat appearance. In person, there is an almost sterile look to the dial and handset. In addition to this flat appearance, there is quite a bit of open space on the dial. I appreciate simplicity on a dial, but I can’t help but feel that there is something missing on this one. 

I am, by no means, asking for the short story that accompanies the dial of the modern Tudor Pelagos, but I wouldn’t complain about another line of text. That being said, this dial layout and handset are signature Tudor and borderline iconic on their own now. The matte black color of the dial is everything that you would expect a tool watch to be, and overall, despite my concerns, this is a very classic dial execution from Tudor.


What about the engine powering this new Ranger? Tudor has opted to utilize the MT5402 in-house designed caliber over the off-the-shelf ETA 2824, powering their previous generation. 

This new caliber has several benefits, including a 70-hour power reserve over the standard 38 of the ETA and COSC certification, providing -2-+4 seconds of accuracy per day. This movement truly blurs the line between Rolex and Tudor and offers significant value compared to the off-the-shelf ETA/Sellita offerings in this price range.


The new bracelet is something that really surprised me from Tudor. The 20mm brushed Oyster style bracelet tapering down to 16mm at the clasp was expected, but the new T-fit adjustable clasp was not. The new T-Fit clasp features a toolless adjustment of up to 8mm, similar to what we see on the Glidelock from Rolex.

This feature is currently only available on the Pelagos 39 and Boutique only Black Bay 58 Bronze, both of which will set you back significantly more than this new Ranger. The other feature I am thankful for is fitted end links. Not much to say here; I think Tudor got it wrong with the 2014 Heritage Ranger and simply corrected their mistake.


The new Tudor Ranger comes in three different configurations. The version featuring the stainless-steel bracelet comes in at a price of about $3150. If you opt to save some money (please don’t do this!), the watch is also available on an olive fabric strap featuring a burgundy and beige stripe or a hybrid leather and rubber strap for about $2825. Compare that to the Black Bay 36, and you are actually saving $50 based on the bracelet/ strap option you select.

You are getting a new design, with an updated bracelet and clasp compared to the Black Bay 36, as well as a significantly improved movement in the MT5402 over the T-6000, Sellita SW200-1, for $50 less! That is not a typo; the value you are getting for this watch is incredibly high, even for a company that sets the standard in this price range.

Top 3 Alternatives to the Tudor Ranger

The Tudor Ranger is a watch that provides exceptional value for money, but it’s not the only timepiece known to do this. Let’s take a quick look at 3 competitive watches and see how the Tudor Ranger compares.

Longines Spirit

Longines Spirit

The newly introduced Longines Spirit checks many of the same boxes that the Tudor Ranger does. The design is more rooted in aviation as opposed to a field watch, but the ability to be an everyday piece remains. 

The Spirit line offers more variety in the form of colors and varying sizes of 37mm, 40mm, and 42mm to help accommodate more wrist sizes and even features a date complication. Longines has recently introduced this model in titanium, giving the Spirit some additional benefits of over the stainless-steel Tudor Ranger. 

Pricing will range from roughly $2150-$3050 for the time and date models. The ETA-based movement will also provide a similar performance to what you’d expect with the Tudor. Depending on the style you are looking for, the Longines Spirit is definitely a watch you should check out before committing to anything in the entry-level luxury segment, even the value-packed Tudor Ranger.

IWC Spitfire

IWC Spitfire

If you are looking for a similar look but have the budget to move up closer to $5000, the IWC Spitfire is a watch that receives constant praise for its value for money. What exactly do you get for an extra roughly $2000? The 39mm stainless steel watch features a similar satin brushed look throughout. The watch also has an in-house movement with a similar specification and accuracy rating. 

The dial appears to be an almost perfect mix between the Longines Spirit and Tudor Ranger, appealing to a more aviation-themed aesthetic with a heritage twist. The watch is only available on a fabric strap, forgoing a bracelet option altogether. The truth is, this watch provides a very similar specification, albeit with a higher brand cache and a slightly higher finishing quality, at almost double the price. 

Most watch enthusiasts consider this watch to be a great value, and its price seems almost inflated next to the Tudor Ranger. This comparison was not meant as a dig on the IWC Spitfire, as it is one of my favorite releases from any brand over the last 5 years; it is simply meant to highlight just how impressive this new Ranger is.

Omega Railmaster Co-Axial

Omega Railmaster Co-Axial

When looking for a true competitor to the Tudor Ranger, the Omega Railmaster Co-Axial is as close as you can get. The 40mm brushed stainless-steel case and 12-3-6-9 vintage aesthetic have a familiar feel while giving us a more unique take on the classic “Explorer” dial. The Railmaster has a history that somewhat parallels the Ranger as well. 

The original release was an underappreciated model and has since seen several reintroductions to varying results. This newer 40mm iteration, while still under the radar, presents a unique option for a more subdued aqua terra. The Railmaster is powered by an in-house Co-Axial movement that has met the qualification for a Master Chronometer. 

The roughly $5200 price on a beautifully brushed stainless-steel bracelet is quite an increase from the Tudor Ranger, but this is an Omega! They’re used to giving industry rival and Tudor’s big brother, Rolex, a run for their money. If you can stretch your budget, this will be a formidable competitor to overlook.


So, that is the new 2022 Tudor Ranger! A watch that gave us everything we asked for, plus some things we didn’t even know we needed, yet still managed to underwhelm the watch community. More than any other brand of recent times, I find Tudor to be a victim of their own success. 

We have come to expect that every couple of years, they are going to create something that truly knocks our socks off. This new Ranger was an incredible release from Tudor, but in a year packed with the release of the Black Bay Pro and long-awaited Pelagos 39, the Ranger kind of fell through the cracks. 

The value this watch presents is second to none at this price point! You really need to look a little lower at Longines or higher with Omega to see watches that make you think twice. So why in the world is this watch not on my wrist right now while some other lucky enthusiast gets to proudly wear my Black Bay 36? 

Honestly, I can’t explain it! It defies all logic and makes me question my identity as a value-centric watch enthusiast. It has everything that I could ask for in an everyday watch, except for one thing; The memories I’ve made along the way! I am sure this watch will one day make its way into my collection, but whether or not it will replace the Black Bay 36 is unsure.

Happy watch hunting!

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