Best Dive Watches Under $500 To Buy In 2019 – Reviews And Buyer’s Guide
Your dive watch is critical for a perfectly safe diving session. It will enable you to determine how much time you have spent underwater. But this doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on it. Therefore, in this post, we are reviewing the best dive watches under $500.
Every diver knows and understands the fact that having a reliable scuba gear is critical. You have to double-check everything from regulators to tank. Similar is the case with dive watches. These timepieces not only have the practical features that you can use underwater but also have rugged construction.
Your dive watch doesn’t need to be expensive like Omega Seamaster or Rolex Submariner. They are the true pinnacle of dive watch technology but they come at a hefty price.
So read on to find the best dive watches under $500 for your next underwater excursion!
Last update on 2020-02-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Top 5 Best Dive Watches under $500
1. Seiko SKX007K
This watch features a high-quality Japanese movement (automatic) and it doesn’t need a battery to run. It will power automatically with the movement of your hand. So you don’t have to worry about a dying battery right in the middle of your excursion.
It features Hardlex Crystal to offer exceptional durability and water-resistant capabilities. The diameter of the case is 42 mm and the stainless steel case has a black dial that displays the type clear even in dark conditions.
It also comes with ate and day features, which is right at 3-o-clock. The watch is water-resistant up to 660 feet or 200m. Therefore, it is best for recreational scuba divers and is one of the best automatic dive watches under $500.
The strap material is rubber and it has a buckle or clasping. This means that it is going to stay on your wrist for as long as you want. The width of this band is 26mm while the bezel function of this watch is unidirectional.
- It only weighs 3.17 oz and doesn’t feel too heavy on your wrist.
- The hour markers and hands are luminous for convenient visibility in dark conditions.
- Resistant to water up to 660 feet or 200m.
- At 3-o-clock the watch also comes with data and day features.
- The watch comes with a Japanese automatic movement
- Rubber band for convenient wearing.
- It is not built for everyday use.
2. Citizen Promaster EcoDrive
If you are looking for a good quality budget option, then this is the right way to go. This dive watch here is powered by light and it will never require a battery to operate. It features mineral crystal that makes this watch resistant to water even at the depths of 660 feet.
The watch boasts Japanese quartz movement and you can conveniently use it during swimming. Apart from that, you can also use it while snorkeling or even while you are showering. The 44 mm diameter is pretty large in size. You can easily track time underwater without any issues.
This watch comes with a date feature on 3-o-clock but you won’t find a day feature here. The hour markers and hands are all luminous and you can easily keep a track on time using this timepiece. The unidirectional bezel will keep track you’re your time underwater with precision.
- This watch is powered by light and it will never run out of juice.
- The mineral crystal of this watch ensures that no water enters the case of this watch even at the depths of 660 feet.
- The watch operates with Japanese quartz movement and it offers exceptional precision even after long hours of diving.
- You can conveniently use it for swimming, snorkeling and even during a shower.
- The hand position of this watch doesn’t stay precise at times.
This watch features Swiss quartz movement which is highly accurate. It will continue to show accurate time so that you never lose track. This is a military diving watch that US Navy SEALs use. There is no doubt about the reliability and performance of this dive watch over an extended period. It is one of the best mens dive watches under $500.
One of the best features of this watch is that it has luminous hour markers and hands that will show you the time even in the darkest of conditions. The construction of this watch involves a polyurethane case that makes this watch very lightweight to wear for long hours. The watch also has a date function and it is resistant up to 200m underwater.
Luminox watches are designed to take the pressure and they offer exceptional durability. The light technology of this watch doesn’t depend on external light and it self-powers. The company only uses high-quality materials in the construction of its watch and this 3059 dive watch is no exception either.
The sapphire crystal coating of this watch keeps the time clear to sight and prevents water from entering under the hood. The sapphire crystal comes with non-reflective coating and it absorbs shock as well.
- The light technology of this watch is self-powering.
- Its Carbonox case is extremely lightweight despite being large in size.
- The Swiss quartz movement of this watch is extremely accurate and it stays that way for a long time.
- The sapphire crystal comes with non-reflective coating and it is resistant to shock.
- It is 660 feet water-resistant watch that can show accurate time in all conditions.
- The sapphire crystal cannot take a direct hit on its own.
- This watch is prone to condensation.
4. Victorinox Pro Diver INOX
Victorinox is known for its bright and vivid colors but this dive watch comes with a rubber bracelet. This is among the best vintage dive watches under $500. Sophistication is at its best with this watch from Victorinox. The rubber strap of this watch comes with lines to give it a look of chain link appearance.
This watch is ideal to wear in any scenario. You can either wear it to a dinner or can go into the water. The unidirectional bezel of this watch features a count-up scale that helps you in keeping the time in mind during your dives. The rubber used in the construction of this watch is resistant to any allergies and it is designed to wear all day long.
It is certified by ISO 6425 and for this reason; this watch is good at 200m. The dial of this watch is 45mm and it comes with an indicator that turns on when the battery is nearing an end. The sapphire crystal used for the watch is anti-reflective. It also comes with a removable protective bumper that is translucent along with removable glass for magnification.
- This watch is available in a number of color combinations as you would expect from Victorinox.
- The sophisticated look of this watch makes it a good option for a variety of purposes allowing you to wear it with your scuba suit or a tuxedo.
- It is a good option for professional diving as it comes to ISO 6425 certified.
- The sapphire crystal of this watch is non-reflective and the rubber strap is hypoallergenic.
- The Japanese quartz movement of this watch has passed 130 quality tests for endurance and reliability.
- The large 45mm dial of this watch feels very heavy on your wrist.
- The band feels a bit too small as compared to the size of the dial.
5. Momentum M1 Splash
You might not have heard about Momentum but boy, they do make good quality dive watches. The M1 Splash is a pure example of what we have just said. This watch is available in a variety of colors and you can pick any one of them according to your taste or preferences.
You can either buy it with mineral crystal or can go for sapphire crystal with non-reflective coating. The sapphire crystal of this watch is resistant to scratch. The markers on this watch are very easy to read and it has a very lightweight construction. Its dial diameter is 38mm and it fits nicely on your wrist.
The strap fits nicely only our wrist for all-day wearing comfort. The best part of this dive watch is that it is very competitively priced. It combines form with function and does a fabulous job allowing you to wear it on any occasion as well.
The stainless steel used in the construction of this watch is 316L and it doesn’t allow water to enter the case. The construction of this watch is pretty solid and you won’t have to deal with condensation.
- Available in multiple colors.
- You can either go for sapphire crystal or mineral crystal.
- The watch is resistant to water at 200m.
- The stainless steel case is good at absorbing shock.
- You have to buy the battery every couple of years.
- It doesn’t come with a day display feature.
You need to focus on your personal preferences and determine what you need to achieve with your dive watch. Here are some of the features that you should look forward to buying a dive watch for yourself.
This is a good solid point to consider before buying. If you are looking to buy a dive watch that comes with regular water-resistant features then a 30m dive watch is good enough for you. It will work for swimming and snorkeling.
However, if you are looking for a watch that is ideal for scuba excursions, then you need to go for a 200m dive watch.
Casing and back
As you are looking for a dive watch you need to consider that the casing needs to be thick and it should be sturdy. This will allow the watch to maintain its water resistance and will prevent leakage. The watch must be able to withstand pressure underwater and for this, the crystal casing needs to be strong.
The casing should be clear so that you can read the time accurately. Apart from that, the casing needs to be sealed completely to resist pressure or flow.
Clarity and precision of time
The time that the watch shows needs to be precise and it should be clear. As the watch will remain submerged in depths of water, the time that it displays need to be precise and clear. You have to keep track of time accurately when you are submerged and your watch is all you have, to rely on.
Divers must have an accurate idea of time that they have spent underwater due to the limited supply of oxygen available at disposal.
In most cases, the divers use cutting edge digital gadgets to track the time, but this can be done using the rotating bezel as a rudimentary backup. Therefore, the bezel needs to be very easy to control and you must be able to read the time accordingly.
As you get deep in water, there is a limited amount of light available. In such murky conditions, you need your hour and minute markers to display clearly along with the hands.
This feature is equally useful at night. The dial will allow you to see the time clearly as if you are seeing time in normal conditions.
Of course, you are going to use your dive watch in rough conditions and underwater, so it needs to be made of high-quality materials. These need to be resistant to magnetism, corrosion, and rust.
The glass of the watch must be resistant to shock. You never know what you might bump into when you are diving underwater.
Automatic or quartz
The type of movement is also an integral factor to consider here. The options available are automatic and quartz. Automatic dive watches don’t need any battery and are self-winding. Quartz, on the other hand, requires a battery to operate.
Quartz watches have simple internal operations while the automatic watches have small machines in them that use kinetic energy to run. Generally, watch enthusiasts go for automatic watches because they don’t put you through the hassle of replacing batteries.
Most of the dive watches are very similar to one another when it comes to aesthetics. They all have a moderate size and have a relatively simple dial.
However, with that being said, you still have a host of different choices in most cases the designs and colors of the bezel and straps vary dramatically. It all boils down to our preferences.
The straps whether they are steel or rubber need to be very comfortable to wear. Of course, you are going to wear your watch for long hours.
Therefore, you need to look for a design that keeps you at ease. The watch itself needs to be lightweight. However, some people do prefer heavy watches on their wrists so it’s all up to you.
Top Brands for the Best Dive Watches under $500
Seiko started working back in 1881 when a young entrepreneur starting repairing clocks and watches in Tokyo. Since that time the company has relentlessly focused on perfection that made this brand a top-class watchmaker in the world.
Citizen has been around for more than a century now and it is a world-renowned watchmaker. It is famous for its quality craftsmanship and reliable watches of different categories.
The brand has collaborated with the likes of Disney, Marvel, Star Wars, and others and has also sponsored a number of events all across the globe from different fields.
Luminox appeared on the map with its high-quality military-grade watches that were specifically designed for US Navy SEALs. These are the watches preferred by the military men.
The quality that these watches have is suitable for tough conditions. No wonder it quickly gained popularity among the masses knowing the fact that these timepieces can definitely withstand the daily use.
Victorinox has a history of more than 130 years and since the time of its inception; the emphasis has been on innovation, quality, and tradition.
The company initially started making sports knife for the Swiss Army. It quickly expanded into other areas such as cutlery, travel gear, fragrances, and watches. Now it is one of the top watch manufacturers in the world.
Q: Why dive watches feature a rotating bezel?
A: This bezel comes with minute markings up to 60 min. The rotating nature of this bezel allows the divers to gauge the time they have spent underwater. As there is a limited amount of oxygen supply, it allows them to keep track of the submerged time.
Q: Are there any standards associated with how much water-resistant a dive watch should be?
A: Some watchmakers state that their watches come with a water resistance rating of 300m. These watches are good for recreational purposes. Others claim that a 200m rating is good enough for recreational scuba excursions.
200m is a standard rating for a dive watch as a trend in the watch industry. But according to the ISO standards a dive watch is considered to be water-resistant with 100m rating. Recreational divers don’t go over 40m. Beyond 40m is the technical diving realm. This is the realm where divers need special equipment which includes a dive watch as well.
Q: How do depth gauges work on these dive watches?
A: Dive watches with depth gauges feature a diaphragm or a membrane that acts as a sensor and it is present on the side of the case.
Water pressure distorts this membrane and the degree of distortion calculates the depth feet or meters. This reading is displayed on the watch via a hand on the face. This allows the diver to watch the reading and gauge the depth of water.
Overall, the winner of this roundup of the best dive watches under $500 is the SKX007K dive watch from Seiko. This is a top-notch Japanese automatic movement watch that doesn’t need a battery to run. T can power itself with the movement of your arm and uses kinetic energy.
It features a Hardlex crystal that is able to withstand water pressure and keep the water out of the case. The 42mm stainless steel dial of this watch is very durable and the rubber strap with clasp is very easy to wear for an entire day. Rated 200m, this watch is best for recreational scuba activities and it also features luminous markers to display time in dark conditions underwater.
If you think that this watch is slightly above your budget then you can go for the M1 Splash from Momentum. The watch runs on a battery and it has all the features that you want from a good quality dive watch.
Click here to get your hands on the Seiko SKX007K dive watch right now and start planning for your next scuba excursion!