2016’s Best Dive Watches Under $200
Need a wrist watch that’s stylish, but also rugged and useful?
Or you don’t dive with a computer, and need a reliable watch to keep track of your dive time?
These inexpensive dive watches fit the bill perfectly.
Extremely water resistant, shock-proof, and beautiful, you won’t have to worry about breaking one of these watches while on your next diving, kayaking, surfing, or mountain biking trip.
I’m going to be sticking in the $100 to $200 range for this post. If you’re looking for something even cheaper, check out my article on diver’s under $100 (where it really starts getting tough to differentiate between complete junk and useful, rugged watches).
This list is also going to be a little Seiko heavy. The simple fact is that Seiko offers a lot of the best watches in the <$200, and even the <$500 price range.
However, if I missed one that you absolutely love, please tell me!
Best Dive Watches Under $200 Quick CompareClicking the model name will take you to a full description down the page.
|Image||Model||Movement||Water Resistance||Crystal||Case / Bezel Material||Case Diameter||Case Thickness||Lug to Lug||Strap Width||Buy Now Link|
|Seiko SKX007||Automatic – Seiko 7S26||200m / 660ft||Mineral – Hardlex||Stainless Steel||41mm||13.25mm||46mm||22mm|
|Orient Mako II||Automatic – Orient F6922||200m / 660ft||Mineral||Stainless Steel||41.5mm||13mm||47mm||22mm|
|Seiko SNE107||Quartz – Seiko Solar||200m / 660ft||Mineral – Hardlex||Stainless Steel||42mm||11mm||49.5mm||20mm|
|Citizen BN0151-09L Promaster||Quartz – Citizen Eco-Drive E168||200m / 660ft||Mineral||Stainless Steel||43mm||12mm||49mm||20mm|
|Seiko Prospex SSC021||Quartz – Seiko Solar||200m / 660ft||Mineral – Hardlex||Stainless Steel||44mm||14mm||49.5mm||20mm|
|Luminox Navy Seal Colormark 3050||Quartz||200m / 660ft||Mineral||Polyurethane||44mm||13.8mm||?||23mm|
#1 – Seiko SKX007/009 Automatic
- 7s26 mechanical movement
- Certified ISO diver’s watch
- 200m (660ft) water resistance
- Unidirectional bezel (120 clicks)
- Hardlex crystal (harder than mineral, softer than sapphire)
- 41mm case diameter
- 13.25mm height
- 46mm lug-to-lug distance
- 22mm band width
- 44-48hr power reserve
- 80g weight (no strap)
- Day and date window
- LumiBrite markers (provides excellent, long lasting luminosity)
Don’t want or need the chronograph functions of the SSC021? Prefer a mechanical, automatic movement because you’ve got a fascination with small, intricate machines? The SKX007 and SKX009 come with a much cleaner dial, and a mechanical movement to boot.
The Seiko SKX007 is probably the most popular diver available in this price range. You could even say it has a cult following among watch enthusiasts, being mentioned anytime someone asks “what should my first mechanical watch be?”.
Be aware that Amazon lists this watch as having a case diameter of 46mm, which is actually the case + crown measurement. The real case diameter is 41mm, and should look just right on anybody with wrists of around 7″.
I purchased a SKX007K(came with the rubber band) for myself last year, and have been wearing it constantly. I took a lot of pictures when I got the box, and will be writing up a full review here soon (it’s here!).
Also available is the SKX007K2, which comes with a stainless steel bracelet. A note of caution before you purchase that one: I’ve read many complaints that the bracelet on these inexpensive Seiko’s is very poor quality,
A lot of people switch out the stock bracelet for the Strapcode Super Oyster, which is higher quality and more comfortable than the Seiko bracelet.
I did this myself, and you can see my review here. I highly recommend it, especially if you’re using this for more than just a tool diver. The main downside is that there’s no dive extension clasp on the bracelet, making it impossible to fit over thick gloves.
Bottom line is, if you want the SKX007 on a bracelet, get whichever version is cheaper and switch out for the Strapcode bracelet.
Another possible watch with a similar style and same quality is the SKX009, which uses the same case and movement as the 007. The main difference is the colored ‘Pepsi’ bezel.
#2 – Orient Mako II Automatic
I really like the styling of the Orient Mako II. There’s lots of little high quality details on this watch, like the embossed Orient logo, the stainless steel frame around the date window, and engraving on the watch crown. It really is a great looking watch, especially at this price.
Why’d I end up buying the Seiko instead? I nearly pulled the trigger on the first generation Mako Black, but while reading up on my next watch, I came across a lot of people saying they had problems getting the Mako’s bezel to function. Apparently it was very difficult to turn.
It sounds like they’ve fixed that issue with the Mako II, so no worries there. I’m hoping to pick one up in the next couple of months to do a full review on.
If you like the style, but want something a little bigger, be sure to check out the Mako XL, which has a 44mm case diameter.
There’s a few different styles of the Mako II available, to suit many tastes. Orange, blue, or white dials each give a very unique look to this gorgeous diver.
#3 – Seiko SNE107 Solar Diver
The Seiko SNE107 is a bold looking watch, with a very different style than the other watches on this list. Recharged by the power of the sun, you won’t need to worry about switching out the battery, or running out of power at the wrong time. And of course, it of the same legendary quality as the rest of Seiko’s divers.
I like the SNE107 a lot as a workhorse ‘tool diver’. No nonsense dial, and the extremely accurate solar quartz movement would make it perfect for keeping in your dive bag.
Featuring a clear high contrast dial, 200m water resistance, a unidirectional bezel, day and date window, and a clean, readable dial, this could be the perfect watch if you’re looking for something a little bit different.
#4 – Citizen BN0151-09L Promaster Diver
What is Eco-Drive?
Eco-Drive is what Citizen calls their solar powered quartz movement. The dial of the watch is a small solar panel, so all it takes to keep a charge is getting left in the light on a semi-regular basis. No battery changes ever needed.
I like the very circular shape of the Promaster case. The only protrusions are the lugs and crown/crown guards.
#5 – Seiko Prospex SSC021 Solar Chronograph
The Seiko Prospex SSC021 Solar Chronograph diver’s watch is a fantastic deal in this price range. Prospex is Seiko’s line of premium watches, and they are all absolutely gorgeous, high quality timepieces. Finding one for under $200 is quite the steal.
Featuring solar battery charging (never worry about replacing a battery!), chronograph functions, 200m(660ft) water resistance, and a unidirectional timing bezel, the SSC021 comes with everything you need in a diver’s tool watch.
The chronograph functions come in very handy in a huge range of situations. While they do clutter up the dial a little bit, the SSC021 will still stay very readable even while diving.
The large second hand is actually tied into the stop watch functions, with the current seconds moved onto one of the subdials.
If you’re not planning on only using it for diving duty and would like to make the SSC021 a little more dressy looking pairing it with the Strapcode Super Engineer II bracelet would really make it shine.
For some reason Amazon’s product page lists this watch as ‘suitable for professional marine activity and serious surface water sports, but not scuba diving‘ – but no need to worry, the SSC021 is perfectly suited for SCUBA diving, with a 200m water resistance and it conforms to the ISO spec for diver’s watches. I’m unsure why they’ve listed it this way.
#6 – Luminox Navy Seal Colormark 3050 Series
The Luminox Navy Seal Colormark was, like it’s name suggests, actually developed for use by the Navy Seals in 1994. Updated continuously since then, it’s built with a very rugged polyurethane case and bezel, this watch is designed to take a beating.
The most outstanding feature of the Colormark series, and what sets it apart from the other divers in this price range, is the green and blue night vision tubes used to illuminate the dial and hands. These are powered by a mild radioactive gas, and don’t need to be recharged by a bright light. With a lifespan of 25 years, there’s no worry about ever not having this your watch visible at night.
The style of the watch definitely isn’t for everybody, especially if you’re just looking for a ‘dressy’ diver. But this would make an excellent tool watch for any and all outdoor activities, especially going diving.
The 3050 series is available in many different colors, most of which can usually be found for just under $200.
Thanks for reading, and good luck on your hunt for the perfect watch!