LIST: The 9 best watches of 2016 – $1000 to $2000 LIST: The 9 best watches of 2016 – $1000 to $2000

LIST: The 9 best watches of 2016 – $1000 to $2000

Justin Mastine-Frost

We’ve already got you covered in the zero to 1K category, but as you inch your way up the watch-buying food chain, the decisions don’t automatically get much easier, and the $1-2K range is just as tricky to navigate. While there’s still plenty to pick from, the quality can be all over the board in the same way it can in lower price brackets. After all, this is the spectrum where fashion houses like Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo try to sell you ETA quartz-powered timepieces for no other reason than the fact their logos adorn the dials and casebacks. Once again, we’ve sifted through the mess and cherry-picked some of our favourite pieces of 2016 that are worthy of your hard-earned.

Tissot PRS 516 Automatic Small Second


The entire PRS 516 line is quite appealing, however this unique and very motorsport-inspired model is the best choice in this price bracket. A trio of partially exposed subdials displays the running seconds of the watch, which, while a little convoluted at first glance, is a really clever way to add personality to its dial without opting for a chronograph. The subdials have a very gauge-like feel to them, and the horizontal striping of the dial adds to the automotive effect. RRP $1475 AUD

G-Shock GWG-1000 Mudmaster


How could we not throw some G-Shock love into the equation? The new GWG-1000 Mudmaster takes the brand’s ‘built like a tank’ approach and ratchets it up a little more for good measure. Multi-band atomic timekeeping, an altimeter, barometer, compass, thermometer, world timer and data logging capability make this one of the most technically capable pieces of wrist gear you can buy — not to mention it’s shockproof, vibration proof, mud resistant and water resistant to 200m. So long as you can handle its hefty wrist presence, the Mudmaster is a solid option for anyone who needs a watch that can take a SERIOUS beating. RRP $1099 AUD

Seiko Presage Power Reserve


We’re willing to go out on a limb here and say that the Seiko Presage chronograph launched at Baselworld last year is the best value chrono we’ve seen in years, so needless to say the Power Reserve and regular 3-hand date models are right in line with that high-value-per-dollar mantra. Much like the white enamel-dialled chronograph, this model uses a typeface and red 12 o’clock indicator similar to the original Seiko Laurel from 1913 that these pieces pay tribute to. Now that the Presage line is finally available outside of Japan, it certainly deserves a spot in this list. RRP $1500 AUD

Farer Beagle Automatic


Farer is very much a new player in the watch market, but having seen their new line of automatic watches at Wind Up NYC recently, we’re happy to report that they’re absolutely worth considering. Vintage-inspired design, funky color choices, well-sized 39.5mm cases and domed sapphire crystals are just the tip of the iceberg here. The brand’s founder, Paul Sweetenham, has a very keen eye for detail, and we can’t help but love his smart choice of colours for indices and contrasting minute track details, as well as the peculiar (and sort of brilliant) addition of a bronze crown. Oh, and these ETA 2824-powered automatics are insanely comfortable on the wrist. RRP $1075 USD

Sinn 556 Anniversary Edition


In the $1-2K range we really can’t ignore German brand Sinn, which makes a whole slew of killer tool watches that are worth your consideration. For 2016, to celebrate 55 years in business, the classic 556 model was launched in special ‘anniversary edition’ colours, which included a bold brown ‘mocha’ as well as the more subdued anthracite dial seen here . The 556 has been a mainstay of the brand’s collection for years, and though it remains the perfect go-to for something under-the-radar that’s incredibly well built for the price. RRP $1600 AUD

Tissot Heritage 36


The second Tissot to make the list is this clever nod back to the early days of wristwatches, where (so the lore goes) soldiers started adding lugs to pocket watches as means of a retrofit. At 45mm in diameter, and powered by an ETA 6498-1 manual-wind movement (visible through the hunter-style caseback, of course), this piece is executed in a way that speaks to that era quite beautifully. Arguably, if you wanted to go way overboard for a similar aesthetic there’s always the Zenith Pilot Type 20 GMT 1903, a beast at 48mm , but that’ll set you back quite a bit more coin. RRP $1350 AUD

Hamilton Khaki Field Auto Chronograph


The Hamilton Khaki Field line goes all the way back to the days of the brand supplying watches to the US Military. Not to miss out on a good trend, this year Hamilton decided to opt for a faux-patina look for its indices to give the line a more vintage feel, and unlike some examples from other brands we’ve seen, it’s been executed quite well. No one’s going to mistake your new Hammy for something genuinely old, but it’s still a rather handsome piece. Powered by the Valjoux 7750 automatic chronograph movement, you’ll have no worries about reliability or steep servicing costs on this one. RRP $1650 USD

Tissot PRS 516 Auto


OK, this is the third and final Tissot to make the list. Car geeks in the room, or fans of the ’60s and ’70s motorsports-inspired watches out there, this one’s for you. In a sea of new releases at Basel, the PRS 516 came out swinging with sleek dials, supple rally-style straps and of course that sweet Powermatic movement that boasts an 80-hour power reserve — all for close to a grand. At 42mm with fairly short lugs, these wear a little bigger than the vintage pieces they draw inspiration from, but are still comfortable on the wrist. RRP $1125 AUD

Klokers Klok K-02


Here we have the strangest timepiece on our list (by far). The K-02 is a quartz/mechatronic-powered retrograde, jumping hour, world timer unlike anything we’ve seen to date. Its complex Soprod movement allows the wearer to hop between 24 world cities, and a longer press of its same control button will switch its hour display temporarily to display the date, which is driven by a perpetual calendar module in the movement. It also has the ability to be quickly removed from its strap to become a desk clock or pocket watch. With all of this going on at such a great price point, it’s easy to understand why the project reached north of 600,000 Euros when it was funded via Kickstarter back in the tail end of 2015. RRP 895 EURO