I frequently get asked about what are some good entry level watches between $195-$5,000 to start a watch collection. I am here to give you my top 5 picks for entry level watches. So without further a do, let’s get started. Generally, most of these watches mentioned are Pilot’s inspired watches.
1.Swatch Sistem Irony- Sistem Arrow
In 2013, Swatch released the Sistem51. This was a revolutionary mechanical machine made system comprising of 51 parts that Swatch developed for an affordable price point . This was a massive success that was taken seriously amongst collectors and journalists around the world. Last year Swatch made this incredible technology available in a Swatch Irony case. This has a 42mm stainless steel case, automatic movement, black Arabic Pilot inspired dial and fitted on a rubber strap. At $195 it may just be the best valued watch at under $200. The best part is that every part is made in Switzerland. You can check out the Swatch Sistem51 Irony collection, HERE
Case back of the watch
Martenero is a unique brand that’s hand assembled in NYC. I own this exact model watch pictured above and it’s very high quality from start to finish. At $495, It’s a bargain considering you can customize the watch, from the dial, to the hands and straps. Not only do you get to pick the leather strap color that’s comes on the watch but you get to choose the color and style of the additional nylon strap that comes with it as well. You can even specify if you want either the leather or nylon strap fitted on the watch before it ships. This watch is automatic and has a sapphire crystal front and back. You can read my glowing review of this watch, HERE
3. Kingsley 1945 Type 3 “Cali King” in copper steel
The Kingsley 1945 Type 3 copper steel “Cali King” combines passion for the past with the pocket watch 1930’s Trench case and respect for the iconic California Dial. This is one of the best entry level watches under $1,000 in my opinion. This has a black “Cal King” sandwhich dial with steel blued leaf style hands similar to the quality of watches in the $7,000-10,000 range. This watch has a tinted Coke bottle green crystal and is powered by an ETA qaurtz movemet. It’s fitted on a vintage bomber style leather strap from the Wolrd War II era. You can check out the entire Kingsley 1945 Type 3 collection, HERE and then place your order with me HERE. I am the Official Distributor for Kingsley 1945 Watches for the West Coast. Stay tuned for the automatic versions. which should arrive right in time for the Holidays!
4. IWC MARK XVIII EDITION “LE PETIT PRINCE”
SInce we are talking about Pilot’s watches for the most part, it’s only fair to include the IWC Mark XVIII “LE PETIT PRINCE” . They have made the Pilot’s watch iconic over the last 70 years! The IWC Mark XVIII “Le Petite Prince” is a phenomenal entry level watch and great value for money from a major Swiss luxury watch brand. This has an amazing luminscent blue dial with white Arabic numerals and hands and a date at the three o’clock position. If you are starting a watch collection and want to be taken seriously with the best of them, this is a great entry level watch for $3,950. I can help you get one at a better price from an authorized IWC retailer and potentially save you the sales tax depending on where you live. Contact me HERE to help you order one today!
5. Tudor Black Bay Chronograph
Those of you who know me and my taste,this last one may come as a complete shock to you. I am NOT a fan of chronograph watches in general but I would absolutely purchase the Tudor Black Bay Chronograph, pictured above. If I was handed a stainless steel Rolex Daytona with black cermic bezel, I would sell it, make money, buy the Tudor Black Bay Chronograph and save the rest. At $5,050, it’s less than half the price of the retail of the Rolex Daytona in steel with black ceramic bezel. It looks like a vintage Rolex Daytona from the sixties, but is bigger, heavier and alot more unique. Plus the kick to throwback with red writing on the dial and additonal hand woven nato style strap with stainless steel hardware is just cool! You can read my full review of this amazing entry level watch, HERE! I can help you get one at a better price from an authorized Tudor retailer and potentially save you the sales tax depending on where you live. Contact me HERE to help you order one today!
Listen to my podcast about this, HERE