Purchasing the best watches for beginners today can be a challenging task.
Not only are there many types to choose from but there are also a variety of costs from some dollars to a supercar.
So, which one should you buy, a tri-watch or automatic one?
Down here, find the necessary information in our guide, and then get the best one.
|AT A GLANCE: MY TOP 7 PICKS FOR THE BEST WATCHES FOR BEGINNERS|
- Best Watches for Beginners – Quick Comparison
- Things to Consider Before Buying
- Reviews of the Best Watches for Beginners Based on Categories
- The Best Beginner Chronograph Watch
- The Best Beginner Dress Watch
- The Best Beginner Mechanical Watch
- The Best Beginner Golf Watch
- The Best Beginner Seiko Sport Watch
- The Best Beginner GPS Running Watch
- The Best Beginner Apple Watch
- The Best Beginner Luxury Omega Watch
- The Best Beginner Automatic Watch
- The Best Beginner Dive Watch
- The Best Beginner Watch Repair Kit
- The Best Beginner Fitness Tracker
- The Best Beginner Triathlon Watch
- Your Final Choice?
- Further reading:
Best Watches for Beginners – Quick Comparison
Things to Consider Before Buying
Quartz vs Mechanical
The first and foremost thing is to determine whether you want a quartz watch or a mechanical one.
A quartz watch is highly accurate (15+/- seconds per month), easy to maintain and inexpensive. It runs on battery power – a long-life lithium battery lasts about 3 years. Or you also opt for the rechargeable battery.
Meanwhile, a mechanical watch is more expensive than a quartz one. Although they are not defined as accurate, some modern ones are very precise (5+/- seconds per month).
The mainspring is either wound by hand (the old way) or automatically wound by a rotor that swings when your wrist moves. Normally, power is saved for a few days. So, if it is left neglected, the timepiece needs to reset and wound.
When would you need to watch complications?
First, you need to understand what a watch complication is. It is known as added mechanical functions alongside the actual time measure.
Let’s explain clearly!
For standard complications, they might be something simple and useful including:
- Chronograph – It is a timing function that runs independently of the main time display.
- Date – It typically rotates from 1 to 31 without correcting for shorter months.
- Power reserve – It is a mechanical movement (manual or automatic) that shows how much power it has left.
- Moonphase – It displays the transition of the moon via a 29.5-day cycle.
Meanwhile, the grand complications consist of:
- Tourbillon – It is a method for lessening the effect of gravity on the balance by revolving the whole escapement once every 60 seconds.
- Minute repeater – It is mainly used for darker winter months to chime the time on command via a series of gongs.
- Equation of time – It is the fluctuation of the day that is determined by the occurrence of the sun against the measured time.
- Perpetual calendar – It automatically keeps track of days, months, years, and even leap years if a normal date doesn’t account for shorter months.
Of course, a timepiece with many complications is impressive. Though you can find some expensive models which only tell the time.
So, it’s up to you.
Which watch style should you choose?
A watch doesn’t only tell the time because it, by itself, tells a story, too. No matter what the story is to conquer the sky or discover the deep ocean, there is a timepiece to suit.
Ranging from something sporty and smart to a dress timepiece to complete your sharp suit, there are a variety of styles to choose from to satisfy your demands.
How much should you spend at first?
The truth is that everyone loves to pay a high amount of money when it comes to buying a watch. But since this is your first timepiece, you don’t need to spend a lot of money – $2,000 for a watch, for example.
Our best beginners’ watch collection in the upcoming part will show you the excellent ones that are under $500.
So, keep following us.
Brands to consider based on price ranges
There are a couple of high-quality watch brands in the market you might have known such as:
If you need a watch for style reasons, maybe to show yourself off, the brand is important. At this point, a Rolex will be more appealing than a high-grade Timex watch.
What about watches made by designer fashion labels?
Channel, Armani Exchange, Gucci or Hugo Boss are lavish fashion labels that make their own watches.
However, are they truly good?
Well, some maniacs are indifferent to these brands because they think that these brands don’t follow the traditions or history of watchmaking.
So, you need to ask yourself whether you want the specification of the timepiece or just the name.
For instance, you can find some Gucci watches about $400 that are quartz watches with cheaper crystal instead of a tough synthetic sapphire window and low water resistance.
But if you pay over $1500 on a real Gucci watch, you will get the one with a synthetic sapphire crystal and an automatic movement.
In our opinion, it is okay to pay a fair amount for the name. In case you want to spend a thousand dollars on a watch with a nice label, think again, please.
Differences between cheap and luxury watches
Take a look at this table below to know clearly.
The high effort put into details
Battery-powered, accurate, limited moving parts
|Quartz or mechanical movement
Spring-powered, precise to within seconds a day, craved by collectors
|Quality of the glass||Mineral glass
Easily broken and scratched
|Sapphire or acrylic
Shatter and scratch-resistant
|Complications||Minimal to none
Not an indicator of quality
|A variety of chronological complications like day, date, GMT, moon phase, etc.|
|The smoothness of the movement||4 or fewer movements per second |
Can hear a tick-tick sound
|5 or more movements per second
Reviews of the Best Watches for Beginners Based on Categories
As mentioned above, there are different watch styles to suit different demands. And the most important thing is that you know what you need – a watch for running or diving or a watch with a famous brand name.
That’s why we’ve made a variety of categories as well as the best pick for each so that you can choose with ease.
Let’s check it out now!
The Best Beginner Chronograph Watch
Our first choice for the best beginner chronograph watch is Timex T49905 Men’s Expedition.
This is a nice analog watch with an elegant outdoor design and sturdy construction that easily fits formal wardrobes. Also, it comes with all the basic functionalities that you crave for a chronograph timepiece.
Since it paired with chronograph function, it is able to measure 1/20th of a second well. It is especially water-resistant to 100 meters, making it an ideal choice for snorkeling and swimming.
Although the Timex Expedition is not sophisticated, it doesn’t fall below par either. And if you love simplicity, this will be a great pick at an affordable price.
- Classy look
- Durable construction
- Be able to measure 1/20th of a second
- Easy to see at night with the Indiglo light-up
- Included battery
- Quiet operation
- Not ideal for diving
- Some complaints of thin glass
Other great Timex watches that you might like:
The Best Beginner Dress Watch
Stuhrling watches are always amazing both in image and quality. And if you want a dress watch that doesn’t cost too much, check out the Stuhrling 3997Z Original Men’s Watch.
This timepiece highlights a minimalist design that offers a smooth elegance to anyone. Since it has a classic style, it easily fulfills both casual and professional clothing, making it a good choice for all occasions.
With an ultra-slim profile and a genuine leather band, it isn’t only lightweight but also brings maximum comfort on your wrist. Aside from showing the time, it features a quick set date window.
Wonderfully, you get a 2-year comprehensive international warranty to set your mind at rest.
- A perfect balance between striking and sleek
- Ideal for all occasions
- Quick to set the date
- Included battery
- Good warranty
- The second hand and the minute hand seem to be identical
- The date display is small
The Best Beginner Mechanical Watch
If you value usability rather than looks, you might love Seiko Men’s SNK805 watch.
Although its main aim is to tell the time, not focus on your sense of style, it by no means looks bad. Since this watch is military-inspired, its design is a bit simple and plain.
But what makes it impressive is its dark green dial with hour and minute numerals. The minute numerals are especially big, permitting you to see the time down to minutes quickly.
This timepiece also comes with a handy feature of date and day function.
Just note that you need to reset it every once in awhile, because it might tend to run quickly or slowly after weeks. If you feel okay, then this will be a good deal for you.
- Automatic mechanical watch
- Easy to see the dial
- Comfortable to wear
- Usable lume, bright at night
- Nice see-through back
- Quiet movement
- Only 30m water resistant
- Cheap bracelet
The Best Beginner Golf Watch
Garmin is a top brand in making the best GPS golf watches, and the Garmin Approach S20 is described as a great combination of style, performance, and comfort.
This watch features accurate yardages to all parts of the green as well as short distances, new functions, and technology.
For instance, the Autoshot allows you to track shots, record shot places, measure distance. Besides, TruSwing is able to track the swing to better your swing and consistency. Plus, a Green View Display helps to show the exact layout and shape of the green.
Aside from tracking your activity and statistics, this watch comes with a sleek look that can match with your golfing clothing perfectly.
- Stylish and snug
- Big face to read the details
- Accurate yardages
- Easy to set up and sync
- Good GPS for the course
- Excellent battery
- Lots of options and functions
- No battery indicator while using
- No touchscreen
The Best Beginner Seiko Sport Watch
It can be said that Seiko Men’s SNE329 is the best beginner sports watch for Seiko collectors.
Its blue colored strap and silver dial are truly a great combo. Moreover, the analog display looks elegant, and with large and bright numbers, you have no trouble reading the time at a glance.
Aside from the time display, the date is shown as well. What’s more, the band is made of durable Nylon and gives a buckle closure, which is damage proof and can last long.
This timepiece is water-resistant up to 100m and is ideal for snorkeling and swimming. But if you are going scuba diving, remember to take it off.
- Well-made watch with an elegant and classy look
- Wide yet comfortable band
- Nice and big buckle
- Solar-powered watch, no battery replacement
- Easy to read the time regardless of night
- Water-resistant to 100m
- The date display window is quite small
- Some dislike a little arrow on top of 12
The Best Beginner GPS Running Watch
Aside from making the best golf watches, the Garmin brand also aims at running timepieces. If you need a unit that can track your performance well, the Garmin Forerunner 35 will be a good choice.
This watch includes some cool running features like heart rate monitor, virtual pacing, GPS, intervals, distance information, and so on.
But what makes it stand out is its inactive alert. If it discovers no activity in an hour, it will vibrate instantly. The long battery life is another highlight because it can last up to 13 hours in training mode and about 9 days in watch mode.
- Small, comfortable and lightweight
- Easy-to-see display
- Long battery
- Accurate GPS tracking
- Many nice colors to choose from
- Easy to sync Garmin Connect website and app
- Hard-to-push buttons on the side
- No wifi, only Bluetooth
The Best Beginner Apple Watch
When it comes to Apple, you are guaranteed to get high-quality and stylish products. And the Apple Watch Series 5 is rated as the best overall for newbies.
Aside from a subtle style, this smartwatch boasts of high-tech features that are innovative and useful. Its user interface is also simple and intuitive.
However, the advanced fitness tracking function is truly the Series 5’s signature because it uses various sensors and a heart rate monitor to track your workout.
- Stylish with various colors and bands
- Many useful apps
- Always-on display
- Accurate health-and-fitness feature
- Long battery life
- Require phone for setup
The Best Beginner Luxury Omega Watch
If you want a luxury watch with a famous brand name, the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean Automatic Men’s Watch is an interesting choice.
To be known as the most advanced dive watch collection, this product is water-resistant up to 600 meters, making it ideal for water activities.
Besides, the blue dial together with the arrowhead hour and minute luminescent hands offers a highly readable and appealing dial across the range.
Aside from a simple and attractive design, this watch has luxury finishes such as stainless-steel case and bracelet, scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, etc.
In sum, these things have been a basis for the success and fame of the Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean.
- Reputed brand – Omega
- Stunning blue dial
- Flawless finish
- Easy to read the time
- Self-winding movement
- Water-resistant to 600m
- A bit heavy
- Luxury price
Other luxury watches you should know:
- TAG Heuer CAN1010.BA0821 Review
- TAG Heuer CAZ1010.BA0842 Review
- TAG Heuer CAZ1014.BA0842 Review
- TAG Heuer WAZ1110.BA0875 Review
- TAG Heuer WAZ1110.FT8023 Review
The Best Beginner Automatic Watch
Invicta Men’s 8926OB is truly a versatile automatic watch both from a style and a functional standpoint.
Have a look!
Its case and band are both made from stainless steel. Since the steel is polished, it looks luxurious despite its budget-priced tag. Moreover, its dial is protected by a durable mineral glass, keeping this timepiece in the best shape all the time.
What’s more, it comes with luminous hands so that you can easily read the time in the dark.
- Clean finish with well-fitting parts
- Durable thanks to the stainless steel
- Luminous hands
- Water-resistant up to 200m
- No need for replacing batteries
- Hard-to-rotate bezel
- Only 1-year warranty
The Best Beginner Dive Watch
If you love diving, yet not have enough money for the Omega watch above, you can consider Citizen Promaster BN0151-09L, one of the best beginners dive watches in the market.
It comes with a dial with luminous hands and unidirectional bezel. Wonderfully, the white numerals against dark blue offer a feeling of deep diving under the blue sea. Of course, it is water-resistant up to 200m.
The stainless steel is another highlight of this timepiece, allowing you to use it for a long time.
But the most interesting thing is that it utilizes light to activate itself. That means you don’t need to replace the batteries.
- Well-built dive watch
- Comfortable band, easily fit any wrist
- Easy to read the time
- Never require batteries
- Good water resistance
- 5-year limited manufacturer’s warranty
- Some prefer the larger date window
- Crystal easily scratches
The Best Beginner Watch Repair Kit
Instead of visiting a watch store to replace the battery or adjust the watchband, buying a watch repair kit is ideal to maintain, repair or do any general things. And the repair kit from Vastar is what you need at this time.
This unit is a set with 151 pieces, making it great for such common tasks like opening watch backs, changing batteries, adjusting the watchband, and so on. Especially, it comes with an operation manual to help you carry out better.
Since all the tools are kept in a black nylon zipper case conveniently, you can carry them around or take care of them with ease.
- A variety of tool, 151 pcs
- Easy to use with a manual
- Nice case with a zipper, keep everything safe
- Great value
- Ideal for common tasks, not a pro kit
- Not high-quality materials
The Best Beginner Fitness Tracker
If you look for a fitness tracker and smartwatch in a single unit, nothing can beat Fitbit Versa 2.
It is able to track everything like heart rate, steps, floors climbed, sleep, particular exercises such as swimming and running, etc.
Besides, it comes with smartwatch functionalities including texts, calls, calendar alerts, access to popular apps, Spotify and Pandora support, the ability to play and store songs.
Thanks to the AMOLED display, you can see everything on the display in bright sunlight. Importantly, it has a longer battery, up to 6 days with an always-on display.
- Smooth and premium look
- Responsive touchscreen
- Expanded fitness tracking functions
- Always-on display
- Cozy and flexible silicone band
- Alexa built-in
- Great battery life
- No GPS
- Some issues with the connectivity
The Best Beginner Triathlon Watch
When seeking a good and quality triathlon watch for running, swimming and cycling, Timex Ironman Classic 30 Full-size Watch is what you need.
This timepiece boasts of various features and functions that make it ideal for athletes of any level.
Thanks to memory for 30 laps, you can use it repeatedly as well as reviewing your workout effortlessly. With the support of push-button, recording the time will be finished instantly.
In terms of water resistance, it does a great job as well – 100m. That means you can use it in any water activities, except for diving.
- Different colors to choose from
- Multiple alarms
- Easy to record the lap-time
- Digital display with Indiglo light-up watch dial
- Excellent battery life, up to 10 years
- Good water resistance
- The band gets loose soon
- The buttons need to be sturdier
Your Final Choice?
No matter which timepiece you are going to choose, you are guaranteed to get the easy-to-use, high-quality and innovative one from the list of the best watches for beginners above.
Importantly, their prices are reasonable – not over $500. Unless you have a pocket clinking with plenty of money, you can consider a well-known name, the Omega watch for instance.
After all, we hope you can choose the most suitable watch for your demands.