Collecting anything should be a labor of love, not a painful dilemma. Unfortunately, the watch world doesn’t share the same sentiment. The big-money pieces make most of the headlines, sure, but there are plenty of great timepieces out there that don’t require you to crack into your savings account.
From unique designs to some remakes of popular high-end models, here are the best watches under $500. You’re welcome.
Linjer Black Dial Chronograph – $239
Featuring a face that’s both sporty and elegant, the Black Dial Chronograph from Linjer is an fantastic choice for the man in search of a watch that’s minimalist and masculine. We received a sneak-peek sample of this model and loved the chronograph so much, we even used it to time intervals while working out. And, since the timepiece won’t officially debut until April, by pre-ordering now you’ll be able to take advantage of some pretty killer discounts.
The Shinola Runwell – $550
The flagship timepiece from Shinola is a simple watch decked out in a sumptuous midnight blue. A bold, no-fuss face is complimented by a sumptuous leather band, which makes this a great pick for casual and formal settings alike. And while we know it’s not technically under $500, it’s still an awesome deal.
The Waterbury from Timex – $119
It’s hard to go wrong with Timex, especially if you find yourself considering its Waterbury model. The streamlined watch features an easy-to-read face, a small calendar, and a leather strap that comes in olive, slate, or brown. It’s also priced for lower budgets, which makes this model the perfect addition to a penny-pincher’s closet.
MVMT Black Tan Chrono Series – $135
For a more modern look, check out the Chrono Series from MVMT. The matte black finish gives this timepiece a sophisticated edge, while the large dials on the side keep it looking masculine and fresh, and the bright red second-hand evokes red-line power. The band comes in either natural leather or black metal, though we suggest the natural leather to really amplify the contrasting color scheme, making this truly a statement timepiece.
1815 Chronograph – $314
The 1815 Chronograph from About Vintage evokes a classic aesthetic with its bright face and crisp, brown strap. As the name suggests, this particular time piece is inspired by the 1815 invention of the chronograph, a device that combines a stopwatch with a display watch. The blue dial numbers and hour, second, and minute hands compliment the rich brown of the strap and stand-out against the pure-white dial and silver case.
Armogan Regalia – $177
Built for the guy on the go, this ultra-durable watch from Armogan is designed to stand the—pardon the pun—test of time. Not only is it constructed with resilient stainless steel and leather, this timepiece is also water-resistant and protected by a two-year warranty. Not to mention the black and orange color-scheme is pretty bad-ass.
JPT-NT42 from Tsovet – $200
It doesn’t get much bolder than the JPT-NT42 timepiece from Tsovet. With an irregular, though bold face and bold, sharp arms, this watch is sure to be an excellent conversation starter. And at just $200, it truly is a steal.
Apple Watch – $399
For those in search of something a bit more techy, you can’t go wrong with the Apple Watch. Sure, it’s a tad more expensive than other timepieces on this list, but when you think about all that’s packed into this bad boy—cellular service, GPS, Wi-Fi and a heart rate sensor to name just a few—$399 feels like a bargain.
Solar Watch from Seiko – $275
And finally, for something totally different, take a peek at the Solar Watch from Seiko. As the name suggests, this timepiece is powered by the sun, featuring a 10-month power reserve when fully charged. Plus, it’s sleek, stylish and bound to impress anyone who sees it.
If you’re known to your friends as Mr. Money Bags and $500 is too little for your rich blood, check out our guide to the best watches under $1,000 and be impressed.