3 Exciting watches under $2,000


Doomsayers predicted mechanical watches were as good as dead thirty years ago thanks to the so-called Quartz Revolution. Happily, it appears that reports of their demise were—like those of Mark Twain’s once falsely-reported death, “greatly exaggerated.” There is no better indicator of the strength of the mechanical watch industry than the plethora of interesting and attractive options in the entry-level price points. Few ever really expected a giant like Rolex or the legendary manufacture Patek Philippe to be put out of business by cheap battery-powered quartz watches. That is why the resurgence in popularity of the lower price watches is in many ways the real success story of the Swiss and worldwide mechanical watch industries. Let’s look at three exciting watches from Seven Friday, Xetum, and Lum-Tec, all available for less than $2000.

Lum-Tec 300M-1 Dive Watch

Lum-Tec is a new American start-up watch company that is putting out some amazing bang-for-buck watches. Our favorite is the 300M-1 diver. The watch features an automatic SII NH35, an OEM Seiko movement that Lum-Tec adjusts to six positions and guarantees for a lifetime of free adjustments — that’s simply unknown and unheard of for a watch anywhere close to this price range. Lum-Tec’s biggest claim to fame is its eight-layer luminous material that gives their watches incredible readability at night or in darkened room—like the movie theater. It is available in both 40mm and 45mm case versions, and is a bargain at around $900.

Xetum Tyndall

The Xetum Tyndall combines classic styling with instrument-style functionality for an altogether clean, modern look. It uses an ETA 2895 or Sellita SW 260 Swiss automatic watch movement and features a 24-hour register with a nod to old-school pocket watch design thanks to a small seconds subdial. All of this is worked into Xetum’s distinctive lugless case. It is a very handsome watch at a very handsome price: $1395.

SevenFriday P1-2

SevenFriday seeks to put the joie de vivre one feels on Friday (often expressed as TGIF) into every day of the week, or at least onto our wrists. The designs are exuberant, hip, and industrial looking. The P1-2 is described by the company as “industrial essence” and we’d have to agree. The fascinating design of the dial, balance wheel peeking through the cutaway dial (it’s an automatic Miyota 82S7 movement you see) and the striking white strap all combine to make for a visually-arresting first impression. SevenFriday offers more understated color combinations for more muted first impressions, too—all for around $1275

As we’ve seen, splendid mechanical watches can still be had for less than $2000, and sometimes for less than the price of a standard rolex watch repair or service. The fun part is deciding which one is right for you.

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