Buying Guide – 5 Automatic Watches from Established Brands Under EUR 1,000
A good watch doesn’t have to break the bank. Thankfully, there are plenty of worthy options if you are looking for something affordable, yet stylish and well-crafted. We have put together 5 respectable watches priced under EUR 1,000. Of course, because you are reading MONOCHROME, these 5 timepieces couldn’t be anything else than automatic. And they all come from well-established brands. Did we hear cool Christmas gifts?
Tissot Ballade Powermatic 80 COSC
The Tissot Ballade Powermatic 80 is a classic three-hander. 41 mm in diameter, the dynamic case is in steel and it stands out with its bezel adorned with a “Clous de Paris” pattern. The dial features nicely shaped applied indexes and Arabic numerals paired with dauphine style hands. The self-winding movement is the Powermatic calibre 80.811, a chronometer grade movement (certified by COSC) with a comfortable 80-hour power reserve and an antimagnetic silicon balance spring. Modernity in the mechanics, elegance in the style. What else could you ask for such a price?
Quick facts: 41 mm steel case – water resistant to 50m – automatic movement calibre Powermatic 80 with hours, minutes, seconds and date. Leather strap with pin buckle – EUR 890 – For more information, visit www.tissotwatches.com
Mido Multifort Escape
The Mido Multifort Escape is a vintage-inspired, rugged sports watch designed for outdoor use. 44 mm in diameter, it is presented in aged-PVD steel, creating a cool patina and it is rated water resistant to 100m. The movement is the self-winding Mido 80 operating at 21,600 vibrations per hour for a healthy power reserve of 80 hours. It shows hours, minutes, seconds and the date. It features a stop seconds mechanism. Overall a great package for just 810 EUR.
Quick facts: 44 mm PVD steel case – water resistant to 100m – automatic movement calibre 80 with hours, minutes, seconds and date. Calf leather strap with pin buckle – EUR 810 – For more information, visit www.midowatches.com
Seiko Prospex Samurai Pepsi SRPB53K1
The Seiko Prospex ‘Samurai’ is back in the Seiko collection and the good news is that it is no longer a limited edition. This sturdy dive watch is rated water resistant to 200m. It features a unidirectional rotating bezel and highly legible luminescent hour markers and hands. Inside the case is the self-winding calibre 4R35 indicating hours, minutes, seconds and the date. If you are looking for an affordable mechanical dive watch, it is a rather hard to beat offer starting at just EUR 419! And the fact that it is entirely manufactured in-house is unique in this price segment. The Pepsi SRPB53K1 is our favourite, but several other versions exist.
Quick facts: 43.8 mm steel case – water resistant to 200m – automatic movement calibre 4R35 with hours, minutes, seconds and date. Rubber strap with pin buckle – EUR 419. For more information, visit www.seiko-prospex.com
Frederique Constant Classics Index Automatic
If you are looking for a handsome dress watch but do not have the budget to spend thousands of Euros, the Frederique Constant Classics Index Automatic is a great option. The steel case is 40 mm in diameter. The dial features a “Clous de Paris” decoration in its centre part and comes with Roman numerals and baton hour markers. The display is completed by elegant leaf-shaped hands and a date window at 3 o’clock. The automatic movement is the calibre FC-303 with 38-hour power reserve and 4Hz frequency (a solid Sellita-based calibre)
Quick facts: 40 mm steel case – water resistant to 50m – automatic movement calibre FC-303 (Sellita SW-200) with hours, minutes, seconds and date. Leather strap with pin buckle – EUR 850 – For more information, visit www.frederiqueconstant.com
Hamilton American Classic Intra-Matic Auto
The Hamilton Intra-Matic Auto is a vintage-inspired dress watch with a simple but elegant design. The well-proportioned 38 mm case wears extremely well. The curved dial and baton hands emphasize the 1960s style. The watch is powered by the tried and tested ETA 2892 automatic calibre, a precise and reliable movement rarely seen in watches at this price. The Hamilton Intra-Matic Auto is either available with a steel bracelet or with a leather strap.
Quick facts: 38 mm steel case – water resistant to 50m – automatic movement calibre 2892-A2 with hours, minutes and date. Steel bracelet – EUR 825 – For more information, visit www.hamiltonwatch.com
Please stop using the word qualitative. You never use it correctly and it’s a distraction.
Careful. One more of those outbursts and your on santas naughty list.
I saw the above comment, and searched for the word, “qualitative.” Yes, the writer misused the word “qualitative”, but I’m going to give the writer a break, because I’m guessing the writer is a non-native English speaker.
Good very informative
We have a word in English for “price point”. It’s called “price”.
I’m with Andrew on this. “…stylish and qualitative” is a hilarious gaffe.
What’s the deviation in seconds per day for each watch, i.e. is there a difference in accuracy between the watch brands?
@andrew noted and edited.
@bimbam the Tissot is COSC certified (so -4 / +6s a day). The Mido Multifort uses basically the same movement. The ETA 2892 of the Hamilton and SW200 of the Frederique Constant are COSCable movements (if you pardon the neologism) so I’d expect these to operate in quite similar tolerances. Seiko indicates an accuracy of -35/+45 seconds per day on this movement (but this seems rather pessimistic to us from our experience with the product and the brand).
To all the Einstein’s focusing on grammatical correctness, please just be concerned with the watches in question. That is what this site is all about.
Seiko SKX007 is incredible for around 200 bucks.
With the exception of the Seiko Prospect I wouldn’t choose anything else. Different styles should get specific reviews. To commentators: please let the language breath — “qualitative” (as used here) and “price point” are OK!
Andrew, please being a pompous A over spelling , it’s his site , offer a correction without blasting the guy
Great post! Very informative, especially the part about the Tissot Ballade Powermatic 80 COSC!
I own the limited edition of the Mido which I bought in preference to the std editions because it comes with two Horween leather straps, which are really wonderful. It returns an accuracy of +0.5-1.0 second per day. I would have preferred this model to have been released at 40mm, but the Type 20 design does suit this size and the short lugs keep it from overwhelming my 7.5” wrist. The case is basic but serviceable and the distressed finish doesn’t look corny. The dial is very well done for the price; heavily but crisply printed and the Geneva stripes add a touch of class. One aspect which I really like is the colour. It is listed as black, but it is actually extremely dark chocolate which is very ‘Italian chic’.
Close inspection reveals a watch made to a budget but also an intelligent use of materials which make the whole package feel just a bit special.