When you start to gear up for your next adventure, if you’re anything like us, you’re going to want to have all your bases covered. From the small EDC essentials to crucial equipment to make the most of your time on the water, it pays off to be prepared. And the best dive watch on your wrist?
You assuredly know that’s a must any time you hop on a boat or traverse terrain to a lake, a hidden waterfall, that tucked-away stream … you name it, and a rugged, stylish dive watch has got to be able to get there in one piece. But what about the price tag? Aren’t most dive watches expensive?
They can certainly climb up there in price, but that’s why we’re here to talk about the best dive watches under $500. To make things easy on you, we went right ahead and rounded up the 10 best.
There’s a proper way to gear up for your trip, and it starts with the best equipment — nothing less than a tough dive watch on your wrist (at an affordable price!) will do. Start with these picks, make sure you snag at least one, and then feel free to see where the spirit of adventure (safely) leads you.
Jack Mason Seamount Automatic Dive Watch
We love the no-nonsense attitude toward rugged functionality and classical styling inspiration that Jack Mason takes — its designs find roots in aviation and field watches, and in this case, the perfect dive watch is what they’ve dreamed up. The Seamount Automatic Dive Watch is made with tough 316L stainless steel for the utmost in durability, with a striking black dial design and a stainless steel link strap you can even swap out with any Jack Mason strap. That’s getting bang for your buck right there.
Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster Diver Watch
When on the hunt for the perfect dive watch, you want to find one that can take a beating, perform reliably, and look great while doing so — time and time again. The Promaster Diver from Citizen clocks in at under $400 and has plenty of unique functionality for the price tag. To wit: It’s powered by light, so you don’t need a battery. It’s going to last and last all day long, particularly useful on diving excursions and day hikes that turn into swimming sessions. Out of the water, it looks darn stylish with your favorite T-shirt and chino shorts, too.
Suunto D4F Dive Computer
Don’t be intimidated by the name “computer” in the title — this wristwatch isn’t massive and heavy to lug around; in fact, it’s nuanced, minimal yet functional, and stylish in a futuristic way. In short, it’s one of the best dive watches under $500 that we could find, perfect for computations needed when freediving and snorkeling — and as the brand points out, you can use it when doing more unique pursuits like spearfishing, too. Better yet, it’s made in Finland, adding in some bonus points for the ability to road test this watch in unforgiving terrain. You’ll wonder how you tackled outdoor adventures without it — at least, that’s what we’d bet.
Dango DV-01 Dive Watch
Dango pulls no punches with its remarkably rugged everyday carry gear, including your new favorite dive watch (delivered at a highly agreeable price, too). The DV-01 Dive Watch is packed with the bells and whistles you need to take on a summer day with any number of twists and turns — like the rugged 45mm case diameter, legible and uniquely stylish dial design, and hard-wearing stainless steel strap. Your new favorite watch (period) could be this one.
Victorinox Swiss Army Maverick Dive Watch
Leave it to a heritage company like Victorinox to continually come up with ways to impress us, and ways to add to your watch rotation, more importantly. The aptly named Maverick Dive Watch is assuredly one of the best dive watches under $500, blending form and function stylishly and easily. With 100 meters of water resistance and an easily wearable 43mm case diameter, it’s ready for just about anything.
Orient Mako II Diver Watch
For under $200, you’re getting one of the toughest and most stylish dive watches we could find, and it’s all coming from a brand that knows how to ensure you get more than you paid for. The Mako II Diver Watch has been something of a cult favorite for years, and it’s now upgraded with a 120-click bezel for plenty of functionality in an affordable package. It looks great in the water, and even cooler out of it.
Tissot Seastar 1000 Automatic Dive Watch
When you want a dive watch built for intensive adventures at sea, you want the Tissot Seastar 1000 Automatic Dive Watch, a rough-and-tumble watch with a terrific price tag and excellent design. The 300 meters of water resistance give you plenty of flexibility, as does the ready-for-anything stainless steel strap with a divers’ safety buckle.
Seiko Divers Automatic Watch
When you want the look of a certain famed dive watch that uses an iconic red-and-blue dial design, but you want one with its own take on the style, you want this refined-yet-rugged automatic dive watch from Seiko. Seiko’s own movement powers this watch with a 40-hour reserve, while the styling potential of this thing is off the charts — feel free to wear it for post-swim drinks, too.
MWC Kampfschwimmer Military Dive Watch
MWC’s Kampfschwimmer Military Dive Watch is everything you could ask for in a tough dive watch — especially one under $500. We love the tactical black NATO strap and sleek dial, plus the legible dial design itself (to go along with meeting mil-spec standards). It’s as good as it gets for an adventure-ready dive watch, one you’ll want on your wrist at all times when on the water.
MVMT Minimal Sport Watch
From the bold dial markings to the aptly named color combination and the blend of sporty and casual style, this MVMT watch is definitely worth of a spot on our list. The brushed gunmetal finish on the dial itself is eye-catching and seriously cool in its own right, proving that you don’t have to trade style for functionality.
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