automatic dive watch under 500

Top 7 Best Automatic Dive Watch Under $500: Tough and Attractive

 ⌚ Last updated September 28, 2019

Dive watches probably make for the most versatile watch designs ever. Depending on the model, you can rock them with a suit or just with a t-shirt and a pair of jeans.

But in any case, they are tough.

Offering at least 200 m of water resistance means they have a better build quality, so they’re ready to cope with any activity you can think off.

And while the $200 to $500 segment is full of great micro brands, you just can’t go wrong by picking a reputable brand, with models that are here to stay.

So if you’re looking for the best automatic dive watch under $500, check out these options:

Orient Kamasu

orient kamasu blue
Size42 mm
WR200 m
Price Range$$

Our rating: 98%

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The Orient Kamasu is one of those watches you wished were available sooner… and when they become available, for some reason, not many people talk about it.

Well, if you know the excellent Orient Ray II, you’re in for a treat – this one is even better.

It still has everything that made the Ray II great: small lug to lug distance, in-house hacking and hand-winding movement, 200 m of water resistance with screw-down crown, great design.

But it adds:

  • a sapphire crystal – no more fear of scratching it!
  • a metal rehaut which gives the dial a lot more depth
  • a brand new hand set – which gives this watch a lot more character

All the Kamasu models (black, blue, green, black PVD case with gold bezel) feature a sunburst dial. So they make for the perfect dressy diver.

To me, a dressy diver is the most versatile watch ever. You could wear it from the beach all the way to the boardroom, and still look sharp.

The Orient Kamasu not only does this dual job perfectly, but it’s pretty affordable too! Just get one now – I know I didn’t regret mine!

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • sapphire crystal
  • small-wrists friendly

Cons

  • hollow end links
  • crown sometimes hard to grip

Citizen BN0190-07E

citizen bn0190 07e
Size45 mm
WR200 m
Price Range$$

Our rating: 98%

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When I think of value for money, mainly 2 brands come to mind: Casio and Citizen.

This Citizen BN0190 blows pretty much everything you know about dive watches under $500 out of the water.

In fact, it features:

  • an Eco-Drive movement – always ticking and recharges with indoor or outdoor light
  • and ISO 6425 certification – the 200 m of water resistance is tested, so no fear of swimming or diving with this one
  • a super sunburst dial – perfectly complemented by the simple yet bold hand set.

I think this watch shines by its simplicity. It’s all about looking rugged and elegant at the same time.

I wish it was smaller than 45 mm, as it would have been a great option for smaller wrists.

Fortunately, the rubber band keeps the overall package lightweight and the small lug to lug distance (given the size of the watch) makes it a great everyday wear.

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • Eco-Drive movement
  • ISO 6425 certified

Cons

  • biggish for smaller wrists
  • mineral crystal

Seiko Padi Turtle SRPA21

seiko turtle padi srpa21
Size45 mm
WR200 m
Price Range$$

Our rating: 94%

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Take a Seiko dive watch with 200 m of water resistance and a turtle case. Add the PADI name, and you’ll have an instant favorite.

You just can’t miss this watch: between the blue and red color scheme, and the blue sunburst dial, this one is not made to fly under the radar.

What why would it? This watch:

  • is ISO 6425 certified – you can actually dive with this bad boy without fear of water getting in
  • has a hacking and hand winding movement – something the Seiko SKX was lacking, unfortunately
  • has a unique design and a lot of wrist presence

But because it shares the same bezel insert design and hand set as the Seiko SKX, it’s actually an excellent alternative to it.

Now, the Hardlex crystal is not the best out there, but it’s certainly better than a mineral crystal – I know I never had a scratch with a Hardlex crystal.

And the case may seem big, but the contained lug to lug distance makes it still a viable option for smaller wrists.

If you’re not a big fan of this colorway, there are TONS of other ones available: black, gray, blue, with gold accents… you name it.

You’ll probably find the one that suits your tastes.

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • ISO 6425 certified
  • solid end links

Cons

  • Hardlex crystal

Victorinox I.N.O.X. Professional Diver

victorinox pro diver
Size45 mm
WR200 m
Price Range$$$

Our rating: 96%

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Tough. Big. Rugged. I could go on and on talking about how bold this watch looks.

But it’s not all looks.

There’s a good reason why this Victorinox I.N.O.X. gets a lot of love from watch enthusiasts (albeit probably not enough): it’s one of the best divers under $500 available today.

It features:

  • A apphire crystal
  • 200 m of water resistance with ISO 6425 certification
  • A clasp with a dive extension
  • An anti-magnetic case

Yes, you can wear this thing all day every day – whatever you’re doing. Even diving, obviously. It will be just fine.

And sporting a Swiss quartz movement, it’s always ticking and on time, which makes it a great grab-and-go watch.

At 45 mm, it will only suit medium and big wrists alike (from 7 inches and up). But if you don’t mind the size, this is one hell of a watch.

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • sapphire crystal
  • ISO 6425 certified
  • dive extension

Cons

  • big for small wrists
  • quite heavy

Certina DS Action Precidrive

certina ds action precidrive 1
Size41 mm
WR300 m
Price Range$$$

Our rating: 94%

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Certina is my favorite underdog Swiss watch manufacturer. The brand and their models fly under the radar, but they offer tremendous value for money.

The DS Action is available with an automatic movement, but it’s more expensive.

This is the one with a Precidrive movement – which is, you guessed it, a (very precise) Swiss quartz movement.

But it’s not all about the movement – this piece features:

  • 300 m of water resistance – more than most watches in this list
  • a sapphire crystal – no more scratches if something hits the glass
  • one of the best bracelet in this price range

It doesn’t seem like much, but the bracelet is a big deal for dive watches. This one is extremely well built.

It obviously has solid end links, but the clasp is where the magic happens. It’s entirely machined (as opposed to just pressed), and it features a dive extension.

So even if it doesn’t have the ISO 6425 certification, it’s ready to dive.

Add the simple, understated look of the dial and hands, and you have a watch that you can wear pretty much all the time.

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • great build quality
  • accurate movement
  • sapphire crystal

Cons

  • unimaginative hand set and markers design

Tissot Seastar

tissot seastar
Size43 mm
WR300 m
Price Range$$$

Our rating: 92%

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I don’t know about you, but when I think of Tissot, I think of dressy watches, sometimes everyday watches. Not dive watches!

But it doesn’t mean that the brand can’t manufacture a perfectly good dive watch.

In fact, this one has:

  • 300 m of water restistance
  • a Powermatic 80 movement – probably the best ETA 2824-2 modified movement available today
  • a sapphire crystal

…and a design you just can’t ignore.

At 43 mm, with a reflective ceramic bezel and sunburst dial, it’s certainly more on the dressy (or even shiny) side of things.

Now the clasp is not the best in its class. And the lume could be stronger for a dive watch.

But if you’re looking to get something that plays with the light like crazy -and is a bit more playful despite having a monochrome color scheme – then this one would make a great option.

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • 80 hours of power reserve
  • sapphire crystal

Cons

  • pressed clasp
  • not the best lume

Glycine Combat Sub GL0093

glycine combat sub gl0093
Size42 mm
WR200 m
Price Range$$$

Our rating: 96%

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Most of the time, you cannot get the Glycine Combat Sub under $500.

It’s available for $650 or more… until you start drifting away from the typical stainless steel case and black dial models.

Not only is this colorway with the black PVD case and rose gold accents more affordable. But it’s a more refined take on a classic dive watch, too!

Sure it won’t be to everyone’s taste, but this watch will not leave you indifferent.

I think the gold accents found on the minute track, hands, bezel and crown are perfectly complemented by the rootbeer bezel insert (which is why this watch is nicknamed Golden Eye).

But this Glycine is not all looks – it has:

  • a sapphire crystal with 3 layers of anti reflective coating
  • a GL224 movement based off the ETA 2824-2
  • curved lugs and a pretty slim case for a diver

Yes, curved lugs are a plus.

This design detail makes for a more comfortable watch, as the lugs better hug the wrist.

Also, the lug to lug distance is under 50 mm, and it’s only 11 mm thick – so this 42 mm watch wears great even on smaller wrists.

All in all, your getting a Swiss Made dive watch from an underrated (but great) brand, with a unique design – all that for less than $500.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the price of this exact colorway shoots up in the future…

Read the customer reviews on Amazon

Pros

  • curved lugs make it very comfortable
  • sapphire crystal

Cons

  • boring hands design
  • PVD coating could peel off with time