We’ve already covered watches ranging from £1,500 all the way to £15,000, but for many, those prices are out of the question. That’s why we’ve compiled some of the best affordable watches on the market, ranging from £515 to £950. 

So, if you’re short of inspiration, we’re hoping that the next instalment of “Best Watches Under” will offer you some food for thought. 

Seiko Presage Sharp Edged Series (SPB165J1): £860

Seiko Presage Sharp Edged Series (SPB165J1)

Image Credit: Chrono24

  • Perfect for: The Seiko Sensei, The Movement Maestro, The Value-Prop Collector
  • Diameter: 39.3mm
  • Movement: 6R35 automatic calibre
  • Case Material: Stainless Steel
  • Features: Date Window, Asanoha dial, in-house automatic movement

Seiko, Seiko, Seiko… is there a more trustworthy brand? Much like Rolex, Seiko has an undying cult following. 

The Japanese manufacturers are renowned for their classic designs, strong movements and reliability. Most people within the industry will have noticed the rise in Grand Seiko over the past few years, and question marks have been placed on their sister brand, Seiko due to their move upmarket. 

So this begs the question, can you still get a decent Seiko watch for an affordable price? Yes, there are many. Here we’ve chosen what we consider the best Seiko under £1000; the Presage SPB165J1.

What makes it special? 

The Presage has come under criticism for the uninventive case design, but with the new Sharp-Edged Series, there will be no complaints. 

The sharper case design is contemporary and angular and gives the watch an overall modern feel. 

The build quality is typically Seiko, and many would argue that it competes with the likes of Longines and Tag Heuer, but I’ll leave that for another day. At 39.3mm the proportions of this watch will suit the masses. 

Those will smaller wrists may be better suited to the Pilot Pioneer, but 39mm for a sports watch meets the current trends. Seiko is leveraging the in-house 6R35 automatic movement; it’s an impressive calibre for the price point. 

Where this watch really comes alive is in the dial options. You can choose between white, blue, green and whisky brown for the dial colours. However, these are not ordinary dials. They are three-dimensional ‘Asanoha’ dials which are essentially hexagonal, tapisserie-style designs, and reflect differently in different environments. The dial colours and the pattern add a level of dynamism to what would otherwise have been a rather simple watch. 

The lugs are sharp, the hands are also sharp and then we see an abstract style to the dial which creates a rather angular watch. At a glance, one may assume that this is a Grand Seiko and sadly it isn’t quite at that level. But for the price point, the execution of this watch is fantastic and certainly worth the price tag.

Hamilton Khaki Aviation Pilot Pioneer (H76419931): £720

Hamilton Khaki Aviation Pilot Pioneer (H76419931)

Image Credit: Hodinkee

  • Perfect for: The Aviation Buff, Historical Horology Fan, The Reissue Collector
  • Diameter: 36mm (x 33mm)
  • Movement: H-50 automatic movement
  • Case Material: Stainless Steel
  • Features: Tonneau case, 100m water resistance, 80-hour power reserve

We’re a fan of reissues here at Lux Watch Club, especially when brands recreate classic watches in such time-honoured ways. 

We’ve spoken about the Omega Speedmaster 321 and the Omega Seamaster 1957 Trilogy, but both of those are above the £5,000 mark. Is it possible to find a well-executed reissue for sub-£1000? You bet!

Hamilton has reissued a military watch which was produced around the 1970s, made for RAF pilots.

Why makes it special? 

The striking feature of this watch is undoubtedly the tonneau case. The case measures in at a somewhat conservative 33m by 36mm, which for most may prove to be too small. That said, this is true of the previous generations and offers a very well-proportioned watch for those who prefer smaller proportions. 

The vintage style proportions also compliment the fauxtina, which is perhaps another area where we may lose you if you’re not a fan of that. However, I think it certainly gives this watch a level of vintage charm and only adds to the classic appeal of this piece. 

This watch is powered by the H-50 movement, the same exact calibre found in the Khaki Field. It’s known for being a solid movement and has an 80-hour power reserve meaning it will be a trusty companion for any kind of activity, you won’t need to take a watch winder with you, that’s for sure. 

So, if you’re packing light or going exploring this is a great one-watch. This is a watch that packs all the practicality of a Hamilton Khaki but does so in a very classic and conservative way. If you’re looking for a one-watch which works for all occasions, this is a fantastic option. You can’t go wrong with Hamilton.

Doxa Sub 200 Sharkhunter 799.10.101.10: £950

Doxa Sub 200 Sharkhunter 799.10.101.10

Image Credit: Dolinski

  • Perfect for: The Diver, The Explorer, The Tool Watch Collector
  • Diameter: 42mm
  • Movement: ETA 2824-2
  • Case Material: 316L stainless steel
  • Features: Date window, beads of rice bracelet, super-luminova lume

At 42mm, the Doxa Sub 200 is certainly larger than a Submariner. But are we able to talk about this sub-£1000 dive watch in the same breath as some of the classics? Well, yes, at least I think so. 

The Submariner and Seamaster are known for their heritage, build quality and importance for both the brands. The Sub 200 doesn’t quite pack the same punch as those two in all three categories but it is one hell of a watch for the price. 

Nowadays, finding a watch that doesn’t seem too expensive for what you are actually getting is difficult. Are Submariners and Seamasters really worth their premium? Some may argue no. 

One watch that pushes all hype aside in a no-nonsense kind of way is this Doxa. It offers rugged build quality but is executed in a rather avant-garde and unique fashion. And, the beads of rice bracelet is far from any other dive watch on the market, Doxa is certainly treading its own path in this respect. 

What makes it special? 

Where this watch perhaps brushes shoulders with the Submariner and the Seamaster is visually. This is the cleanest-looking dive watch currently in production. With the date window, uninterrupted crystal (cyclops-free) and one line of text on the dial, this watch looks endlessly classic. From every angle, this piece looks elegant, which is rare for a dive watch (especially a 42mm dive watch). 

So apart from the logo, the heritage and the movement, Doxa is offering a lot of the same as Rolex and Omega but for a fifth of the price. Some may call it boring through its lack of colour, but I think this is one of the most refined-looking dive watches out there. Doxa has done a great job here and it most definitely warrants the £950 price tag. 

Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical H69449861: £515

Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical H69449861

Image Credit: WristReview

  • Perfect for: The Explorer, The Under-the-Radar Collector, The Hamilton Buff
  • Diameter: 38mm
  • Movement: H-50
  • Case Material: PVD-coated stainless steel
  • Features:80-hour power reserve, sapphire crystal, cow leather strap

Another Hamilton? Yes, of course. There’s no doubt that Hamilton is one of the best, if not the best brand around the £1000 mark. Their most iconic modern watch has to be the Khaki Field Mechanical. It is rugged, it is refined, and it is a fantastic option for half our maximum budget. 

What makes it special? 

There is a plethora of options, different case materials, dial colours and strap choices, but we’ve gone with the PVD option. This combination is what I’m calling the stealth design. 

They have combined an ‘earth’ coloured PVD coating which compliments the dark dial very well, to give this watch a real military feel. 

On the leather strap, this watch will offer you plenty of versatility, you could wear it hiking or day-to-day in the office and it will go equally well with a pair of shorts and a t-shirt as it will with a jumper and trousers. Granted, it’s not a dress watch, it would look out of place with a Tuxedo, but if you’re someone who doesn’t like to baby their watch, this is a perfect option. 

At 38mm, the dimensions of the Khaki Field Mechanical are suitable for most wrist sizes, it’s an incredibly approachable watch in its design and proportions. The lugs do protrude somewhat so it isn’t perhaps a great option if it’s a present for a child, it will look big. But the overall package is incredibly rugged and dependable as well as offering superb value for money. 

Tag Heuer Formula 1 (WAZ1110.FT8023): £950

Tag Heuer Formula 1 (WAZ1110.FT8023)

Image Credit: Ethos Watches

  • Perfect for: The Sports Watch Collector, The Price-’Tag’ Conscient Collector, The Dive Watch Folk 
  • Diameter: 41mm
  • Movement: Quartz
  • Case Material: Stainless Steel
  • Features: Unidirectional Rotating Bezel, Date window, 200m water resistance 

Perhaps one brand that you may not have considered in this bracket is Tag Heuer. If you’re looking for mechanical watches, well you’d struggle to find a brand-new watch from the brand at this price point. 

However, we’ve found a quartz Formula 1 which boasts all of the modern attributes of a Tag Heuer but for a very reasonable price of £950. I know it is quartz but bear with us. 

What makes it special? 

Tag Heuer itself is a highly reputed brand, producing a variety of models and themselves, much like Seiko, have got a strong following. It’s no secret that Tag Heuer is an entry-level watch in comparison to other Swiss watches, like Rolex or Omega. 

That said, you’re getting a lot for the £950. You get a well-respected brand, a well-executed watch, and a reasonable price tag. 

The main plus point of this watch is its practicality. The rubber strap is comfortable and the dial itself is highly legible, a great daily wearer for many different lifestyles. 

This is a sports watch which offers you all the mod-coms of any dive watch. Yes, it’s quartz, and yes, it’s not Rolex or Omega, but you’re getting a good brand and a great watch at a very fair price. 

Honourable Mentions

We found many watches under the budget and had a hard time refining the list. Honestly, there is a fantastic selection of watches out there, sometimes many different models from the same brand. As honourable mentions, we’ve included a list below of some of our close contenders:

The Verdict

We’ve offered you our five picks for the £1000 price point. But if we were told to pick only one of the five it would be, this time, a fairly easy choice. 

We’d go for the Hamilton Khaki Aviation Pilot Pioneer. This watch to the passing eye is a watch that is way beyond its worth. Visually, this watch has been designed in an honest way, true to the W10, from which it drew its inspiration. 

Hamilton power this watch with an in-house, trusted and respected, automatic H-50 movement, which for sub-£1000 is highly impressive. The proportions may not be for everyone, but this has got to be one of the best-looking watches under £5,000, let alone for a fifth of that. 

Personally, when I think of current hot watches, for all price ranges, this Pilot Pioneer is one of the first that springs to mind. Hamilton makes very popular watches, and this is no exception.