EMTs and Paramedics have super demanding jobs and need a tough watch to match. Now, there are two schools of thought on what makes the best EMT watch:
1) A lot of features and you're happy to pay for watch that will last, or
2) Something cheap and basic that you can throw away should it become too gross.
Either way, we've got something for you in our EMT watch picks below. We also have a buyers guide at the end to help you decide which EMT watch is best for you.
Note: This guide focuses on EMTs, but our recommendations are also suitable for paramedics and EMS in general. We've also covered our favorite watches for nurses here.
G-Shocks are clear favorites amongst EMTs because they are super practical. Renowned for being extremely tough, and packed with great features at an affordable price.
They are easy to read, water resistant (200m) and the silicon band is simple to clean with minimal risk of patient contamination.
We like the GWM5610 G-Shock because it's relatively small (compared to other G-Shocks), has an EL backlight powered auto-light feature so you can turn it on and still keep your hands free. And is solar powered so there's no risk of the battery dying when you need it most.
Add in the atomic timekeeping function that automatically syncs the time every night and you've got yourself a super reliable set and forget watch.
The retro square design is not exactly loved by everyone. But we don't really mind as the practical benefits of this watch make up for its rather bland design.
If you're a deep sleeper, we'd recommend using a different alarm such as a cell phone or alarm clock as the alarm on the G-Shock GWM5610 may not be loud enough to wake you.
G-Shock Tough Solar GWM5610
Sometimes you just need a watch to be just that; a watch. Easily read the time, a few functions (including 24hr time) and you're set.
This basic Timex watch is just that. The cheapest watch in this list, it's ideal for those that just need a basic watch whilst on duty.
At this pricepoint, the Timex Marathon is considered a 'throw away' watch. With such a small investment, you don't really need to think about the purchase. You can buy one and if it doesn't live up to expectations, you can buy another one after a month or two of usage and give this one to your kid brother or relative.
The durability is good, but it is not a G-Shock. It's plastic case does protrude and offers protection from bumps and scratches, but don't be surprised if a solid knock causes damage to it.
With supersized numbers, readability at a quick glance is great. This includes easy-to-read seconds.
If you need a cheap watch that just functions well as a watch, there's little risk in trying a Timex Marathon as your first EMT watch.
The numerous nooks and crannies in the Marathon can trap organic matter more than some other watches in this list. So, you'll need to take a little more care cleaning and washing this watch.
Some buyers haven't been impressed with the size of the band. Suggesting it's on the skinny side if you're an adult male.
Marathon by Timex
Designed by the Swiss for super challenging low light conditions faced by navy seals, the Luminox Navy Seal is a popular alternative for EMTs.
There's a lot to like about the practicality of this watch, but I personally really enjoy the bold, striking design and readability of the numbers. It screams, "I'm here to work, but I will look good doing it".
We've also recommended the blackout version as one of our favorite watches for law enforcement officers.
Boasting lume that is 100x brighter than it's competitors, the tritium lume makes it unbeatable for low-light situations where every second counts.
The tough polyurethane case is designed to weather all sorts of bumps and scratches. With sleek crown guards to prevent any damage to the crown.
As it's designed for navy seals, there's no surprise that it comes with 200m water resistance. Water is the natural state for the Luminox Navy Seal.
The striking design allows this watch to transcend the work/life boundary, so it will not look out of place if you decide to wear it off-duty too.
The plastic band may need to be replaced after a year or two of solid use. But, given the accumulation of fluids and other organic matter that builds up on any EMT watch, it's probably not a bad idea to replace the band semi-regularly anyway.
Whilst still affordable, the Luminox Navy Seal is more expensive than the other watches on this list. Making it more of an investment than a cheap throw away watch. So, if you're a new EMT and not exactly sure whether it's for you, then this may not be the best watch for you.
Luminox Navy Seal Evo 3051
Seiko 5’s have a fantastic reputation for packing higher-end features into an affordable, durable and classicaly designed watch.
There are numerous Seiko 5’s to choose from, but we’ve gone with the SNK809 model because of its easy to read color scheme, mainstream appeal and affordability.
The military inspired Seiko 5 SNK809 is born from the Seiko 5 range that first hit shelves in 1963. The “5” references the 5 features that were introduced for this series, which are still relevant today.
They’ve had a lot of time to make alterations and improvements since they launched, which has allowed them to continue to increase quality, whilst advancements in Japanese mass production efficiencies have allowed them to keep costs very affordable.
The 37mm size suits a wide variety of tastes and doesn’t pose any issue to wear underneath jackets or other work clothes. The luminosity is provided by Seiko’s own Lumibrite and displays luminous dots every five minutes for easy reading.
One of the reasons we like this watch is that it’s hard to find real faults with it. This is especially true considering its sub $100 price point and Seiko automatic movement. If we were being super hard to please, we’d push for slightly more functionality from the automatic movement such as hand winding and hacking (so we can re-sync the time easier).
Whilst the strap is durable, we’d probably opt for a non-canvas option to help avoid nasty pathogens from accumulating.
Finally, the simple and flat design is not to everyone’s taste -- but we think the understated, flat design looks great and is super practical for EMTs.
Seiko 5 SNK809
The second G-Shock in our list of best EMT watches is the DW 9052. I consider it the entry-level G-Shock for EMTs. You can find slightly cheaper G-Shocks, but this comes at an unacceptable performance trade off.
The tough case can withstand everything thrown at an EMT (and then some). The lugs are also designed with durability and comfort in mind, as the straps can move freely inside the lugs. This allows the straps to better hug the wrist and provides a more comfortable wearing experience.
No, you won't get the same functions like solar power or atomic timekeeping that you'll get with the GWM5610 G-Shock, but you'll also pay about half the price. Making this a very affordable watch, perfect for those that aren't looking for a lot of additional functions.
Water resistance of 200m is a great addition at this price point. You don't need to worry about the elements or other liquids your day.
The dial layout is easy to read, with two separate displays for the time and the date, separate by the middle section that counts every 10 seconds.
Whilst the dial readability is good, I don't really like the middle section that allows to keep track of 10s increments. I find it of limited use and this space could have been used to make the time and date displays bigger. The middle 10s count display also makes the watch look a little busy.
Like all G-Shocks the DW 9052 is a bulky watch at 47mm in diameter and 15mm thick. Whilst the thickness is great for absorbing shocks,it becomes an issue for catching on things and if you need to wear it underneath a jacket in winter.
The mineral crystal display offers substantial scratch resistance, but it will get scratched over time. The scratch resistance could be improved with a sapphire crystal but that would certainly increase the price.
G-Shock DW 9052
We’ve consulted with some paramedic friends and scoured the watch and EMT forums to determine the features that matter for EMTs. Naturally, some of these factors will be more important to you than others.
Any watch worn by an EMT is going to need to be cleaned. A lot. An unavoidable part of being an EMT is that you are going to get all sorts of bodily fluids splattered across your wrists and hands. Don’t just think about the face, but the rear casing, band, buttons and even the bezel (if it has one) will need to be routinely washed with soap and/or alcohol.
Internal watch components hate water, soap, alcohol (rubbing and EtOH) and other fluids, so a watch that has good water resistance (please don’t say waterproof -- there is no such thing) should be high on your list of must-haves.
Either a digital watch that displays seconds or an analog with a second hand will generally be required for taking a patient’s pulse etc. Some work environments may even stipulate specific requirements such as an analog with a second hand MUST be worn. Obviously you need to adopt this guide to your own circumstances.
Dial readability in an instant is a must. A dark background with contrasting hands is a great option. Black dials are very popular amongst EMT’s for this reason.
This is particularly critical for night shift duties. Standard practice is to use a non-radioactive photoluminescent material to provide the luminosity. However, this means that the watch needs to be exposed to a light source to “recharge”, which may not be possible on a long night shift with the end result being a watch with poor luminosity and difficult to read at night.
If luminosity is important to you, then your best bet is to get a watch with tritium gas inserts or a back-lit LED. An auto light feature is the next best option which automatically turns on the light if the watch is tilted towards you to read it. The lights up if you turn your wrist.
The band needs to be easily washable as it should really be washed whenever you wash your hands. It should also be easily replaceable as chances are you’ll go through a few.
Band material is also an important consideration as they can be a hotbed for bacteria and other threats to patients. Metal links can trap a whole range of nasties, while leather and nylon can also absorb hazardous pathogens. So, the best choice is a plastic/silicone band.
Wondering whether your watch is going to be able to withstand all the small bumps, scrapes, dings and scratches that it will inevitably receive whilst on EMT duty is not really something you want to be worrying about. A watch with a proven track history of absorbing shocks and abuse should be an important consideration if you're thinking of the watch as anything more than a throw away investment.
Whilst watch size generally comes down to personal preference, there are a couple of additional points an EMT needs to factor in which may lead to a smaller size being preferred. The first is a bulky watch is more difficult to wear underneath a sweater or jacket. Secondly, a larger watch may impede your wrist movement during important procedures such as giving CPR.
If you have any doubt, start with a smaller watch.
Price is clearly going to be a factor. We’ve left it last because there are two different schools of thought when it comes to how much an EMT should spend on a watch.
The first says that just use a very basic watch that fulfils most of the above criteria and replace the watch whenever it breaks or gets too dirty. This is also a great strategy for those that are a little unsure about what watch they should be wearing on duty as a paramedic, especially new recruits.
The second school of thought suggests that it’s worthwhile going for something a little more expensive that you shouldn’t have to replace as often. This will give you a watch that has more features and should fulfil all of your requirements.
Whatever path you decide to go down, leave room in your budget for some replacement bands as these will most likely get pretty gross quickly.
Popular culture has caught onto the fact that G-Shock are the unofficial choice of EMTs, with numerous shows featuring G-Shocks on the wrist of characters employed as EMTs.
My favorite is Shameless, where several G-Shocks can be spotted such as this one:
If you're looking for a watch that will help you 'fit in', then G-Shocks are an obvious choice.
Don’t overthink the decision to find the best watch for your job as an EMT.
Do you just want something to get the job done with a minimum of fuss? If this is you, then go for the cheapest option in our list, the Marathon by Timex.
If you are after something that quenches your thirst for features without breaking the bank, the G-Shock Tough Solar is best for you.
The Omega Seamaster, a timepiece owned by the few that can afford one, is the epitome of fine Swiss timepieces — with stunning engineering, exquisite Swiss watchmaking craftsmanship and a deep sense of secrecy.
The Omega Seamaster collection features watches that are amongst the most recognizable in the world - and the most coveted by those in search of true Swiss workmanship and exclusivity.
However, the prices of many of the Seamaster variants can be astronomical - making these stylish and iconic watches beyond the reach of the majority of watch lovers, including professional and amateur divers, many of whom regard the Seamaster as the ultimate diving watch.
The prices for the classic Ploprof 1200M Seamasters can range from around $7,000 to $13,100, depending on the materials used. The entry-level Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150M goes for around $4,000. But at the high end is the Seamaster 1948 'Co-Axial Small Seconds 38mm (Limited Edition),' which can fetch in the region of $42,000.
Clearly, many of those who are in search of Omega style might have to look elsewhere.
Fortunately, there are a number of watches that pay homage to the Seamaster - and sport a similar stylistic footprint. Here are some of the best.
Seiko has built an enviable reputation for supplying high-quality timepieces at a reasonable price. Their range of dive watches is especially impressive.
Seiko doesn't manufacture Omega look-alikes with that classic blue face - but the blackface version looks very similar to the black-faced Omega Seamaster variants.
The hands might be a bit chunkier than those on the Seamaster, and it does feature a day/date, unlike the Seamaster, which only has the date displayed, but this is a solid, well manufactured, and attractive choice.
It's water-resistant to 200m (660ft), features an automatic movement, and a 'Hardex' crystal window. At a price of around $300, this is our go to watch whenever someone asks for a recommendation for a more affordable Omega Seamaster.
SEIKO SKX 007
This watch is about as close to a Seamaster clone as can be without attracting the beady eyes of the Omega legal team.
There are, however, a few slight cosmetic differences. The bevel is more textured than that found on the Seamaster, and the face does have different patterning.
Like the Seamaster, it does feature dot hour markers and a date function at 3 O'clock.
Like some other more expensive homages in this list, it is water resistant to 200 meters and features a uni-directional bezel and automatic movement.
To be expected for the price, many specs are lower than most of the Seamaster's.
All in all, an attractive timepiece that can easily double up as a diving and dress watch. With some models priced at around $70 (online), you are going to struggle to find a better combination of value and sheer good looks.
Invicta 9094 Pro Diver
With this watch, we are starting to get into the more expensive echelons of Seamaster homage designs. At a whisker under $4,000, some buyers might start to think of going for the Seamaster itself.
But the specs are impressive. It's a high-quality Swiss creation like the Seamaster, featuring water resistance to 500 meters (1654ft) and the strap has a 'deployment clasp.' Like the Seamaster, the Pelagus also comes in titanium model (case and bracelet) - which we think adds to the sleek and elegant design.
The window is sapphire crystal, and the automatic movement is COSC (Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute) certified which means it comes with a number engraved on its movement and a certificate of authenticity. It's worth noting that this timepiece is manufactured in the same factory as Rolex watches.
All in all, a very impressive piece of Swiss timepiece manufacturing - and highly attractive.
Tudor Pelagos Blue Dial
You'd have to look extremely closely at this watch to spot that it is not an Omega. It sports some very similar features, and the style is pure Omega.
The similarities include the blue face and dial, which are classic Seamaster. The silver-colored hands, and the lettering are all very similar to the Omega classics too.
The dive watch is water resistant up to 200 meters (around 660 feet) - it's not quite in the same class as some of the more advanced Seamaster's.
But at a price point of around $150 (online) and featuring 22 jewel Japanese movement with a mineral crystal window, it is definitely worth a look.
Orient Ray II
This watch boasts impressive specs for any timepiece of this quality that comes in around the $100 mark.
The striking blue dial looks great, and the bright hour markers add to the appeal and easy readability underwater.
Like the Seamaster, it has a date window (albeit slightly differently orientated). The addition of a 'deployment clasp' is a nice touch as this feature is usually only found on much more expensive timepieces.
The movement is Swiss quartz, and it is more than capable in the water, being water-resistant to 200 meters.
Stuhrling Aquadiver Regatta
Stemming from Invicta's famous Grand Driver collection, this modern and elegant timepiece features a finely crafted Japanese automatic movement and a high quality of workmanship, at an affordable pricepoint.
The 47 mm stainless steel case of the Invicta Grand Driver timepiece is further complemented by a stainless-steel band, making it a worthy companion for every function and style.
Offering water resistance to a depth of 300 meters, the Grand Driver is accompanied by a five-year warranty from Invicta for your peace of mind.
Invicta 3044 Grand Diver
The Seiko SKX 007 is, in our opinion, the best timepiece for those seeking for an affordable Seamaster alternative that combines quality craftsmanship, ample diving features and still looks great at the office.
Those on a more limited budget should consider the Stuhrling Aquadiver Regatta, which, with its exceptionally attractive blue dial, is sure to grab your attention.
If you have the money and are looking for something a little different, but still has many of the Seamaster's hallmarks, then the Tudor Pelagos Blue Dial is our top pick.
The classic status of the Omega Seamaster has allowed many homage variations to become popular watches in their own right. There are now many great choices available to those who want Seamaster looks, without breaking the bank.
The sheer number of choices ensures that there is simply something for everyone - at a price for all wallets.
Scuba diving is testament to mankind’s ingenuity in overcoming natural barriers, and dive watches are one of the best examples this. Combining precise engineering and looks into an accessory for an activity that humans shouldn’t really be doing is why dive watches have a soft spot in our hearts here at WKOW.
So, if you’re thinking about purchasing a dive watch for that upcoming holiday, or potentially saving for that special splurge or even ‘holy grail’ timepiece, this guide will definitely point you in the right direction without getting your feet wet.
The main functions of a high-quality dive watch is to allow scuba divers to keep a record on the dive time, under pressure by using a rotating (or analog) bezel that allows the wearer to pre-select a period of time up to 60 minutes. This allows the wearer to understand their dive time, and then calculate maximum dive time before hazardous gases build up in their blood system. Diving is by its a nature a risky sport, so the last thing you want to be worrying about is whether your dive watch is going to give way mid-dive, leaving you more vulnerable than is necessary. This is where technical specifications and user reviews come into play.
The robustness will be tested underwater. Yes, you’ve got additional pressure from water above, but watches also get banged around a lot whilst diving. This can be from rocks, coral, your own tank/gear and even fine sea particles such as sand and seaweed can play havoc to the durability of a dive watch.
This one is pretty obvious, but it’s also important to be realistic with exactly how much water resistance you really need. ie If you’ll mostly be using it snorkelling, buying a 500m water resistant watch is most likely overkill.
We all love a sexy design, but don’t just base important gear decision on looks. Instead, make sure it has the features you’re going to use the most. This doesn’t mean you need to go for the highest-price model simply because it has the most features. If you aren’t going to use the feature, you’re basically adding extra expense for no benefit.
I’m a certified diver and personally prefer a simple design when I’m diving because I don’t want to be wasting my dive time playing around with features, dials and buttons. This is time I can spend hanging out with my dorsal appendaged friends. That said, we’ve included a range of watches for different budgets, styles, preferences and dive levels (ie newly certified has different requirements than a pro diver) in the round up of our 7 favorite dive watches below:
These Padi licensed Seiko models are water resistant up to 200 meters (656 ft), made of stainless steel and the overall look is quite appealing with a smaller form factor than some of the more bulkier dive watches on the market.
The crystal is made out of a Seiko proprietary hardened mineral crystal called “Hardlex”. This material is more impact resistant, but slightly less scratch resistant than sapphire crystal. The Lumibrite on hands and indexes allows for easy dial reading for at least 4 hours once fully charged by a light source.
The word Prospex implies professional specifications and these watches don’t disappoint the budget conscious diver that also needs precise engineering. With a lower price point, you’d be forgiven for splurging a little more on that new Go Pro you’ve been eyeing…
This is the best dive watch in our list for the budget conscious or recently certified divers that don’t want to fork out loads on their first dive watch.
Where this model really departs from its predecessors is the technology and associated attention to detail. They’ve removed the satin aluminium inserts from the unidirectional rotating bezel and replaced with scratch resistant ceramic inserts. And, perhaps the biggest improvement to design is the use of liquid metal, rather than traditional casting and subsequent machining. This produces a very precise, strong and corrosion resistant timepiece.
This level of engineering finds its way throughout the entire watch, including the movement system. Powered by the Omega 8500 caliber Co-Axial based automatic movement which has been widely regarded as a robust and precise movement system. This is a true competitor and alternative to the Rolex Submariner.
One of the main drawbacks of the new Planet Ocean’s technology is that they are a few millimeters thicker. This has left some enthusiasts shaking their head as one of the Seamaster’s long running standout traits has been its slim, elegant design. This Omega has been known to actually feel thicker than it is.
The bold design with broad arrow hands and gloss dials, works effortlessly with the well proportioned, precise engineering contained within this iconic and practical Omega that James Bond still wears to this day. This is definitely one to consider if you have the budget and want a stylish, practical and superbly engineered dive watch. If you don’t have the budget, we’ve compiled our top 6 Omega Seamaster homage watches to consider.
Swiss made with automatic hand movement, this Tudor has been gaining in popularity with divers since the Pelagos’ rebirth in 2012. Because it is made of titanium, it is lighter than its stainless steel counterparts, which is a great feature if you plan on this watch being your everyday “desk diver” too. The titanium case and bracelet have a brushed finished, which makes it stand out from a traditionally high-polished finish of a stainless steel and tends to hide scratches very well.
Not sure what titanium in watches is all about? Read our article on Stainless Steel vs Titanium as a primer.
In 2015, Tudor introduced its own revamped movement system, the MT56 12 with a 70 hour power reserve. The saphire crystal is completely flat, eliminating any distortion that a raised crystal provides, which is a handy underwater feature. The build quality can be felt and heard in the click of the bezel as you move it.
The Tudor Pelagos is much more than a “cheaper” version of its big brother, Rolex. The titanium build provides a sophisticated , lightweight alternative to a Submariner or Planet Ocean and is very worthy of at least adding to your diver shortlist. At least try and check out the brilliant deep blue version as we’ve found it to be very striking, whilst remaining elegant for those dinner occasions.
There are two main versions of the Submariner; with and without a date plus magnifier. The non-date version costs about $1,000 less and is arguably the more popular of the two. It was also the original as the date version only came in later.
Featuring a 40mm wide case crafted from a single block of a corrosive-resistant 904L steel, and a turning bezel made from Cerachom (a type of ceramic) which makes it extremely resistant to scratching, fading and corrosion. The movement is controlled by the in-house Rolex Calibre 3130. An important visual and functional feature is the winding crown, which closes much like a submarine latch.
This video shows the beauty of the Submariner close up in all its beauty:
The Submariner isn’t just renowned by divers (incl Navy Seals), or for precise engineering. It redefined what it meant to own a prestige timepiece. You certainly do pay a premium for the Rolex brand, but in return, you know you’re getting an incredibly engineered watch that will last for many years and is universally loved and admired. Indeed, a significant factor for many in purchasing this watch is for the status, announcing to the world that you’ve made it. Don’t let this fool you though, the Submariner is a serious dive watch and definitely worth considering.
Submariners too pricey? We’ve got you covered with our take on the best Rolex Submariner homage watches.
The 41 mm case features alternating polished and brushed stainless steel, bringing a casual elegance to this watch. The biggest change in recent years has been the addition of the ceramic bezel. Similar to Rolex’s Submariner and Omega’s Planet Ocean, the ceramic rotating bezel allows this TAG to take an absolute beating without scratching, fading or corroding. This is a massive feature for a dive watch given that it’s very common to bang your hands on all sorts of rocks, corals, sand and other general underwater hazards whilst diving.
But, the Aquaracer is considerably more affordable than a Submariner or Planet Ocean, making it a great entry-level dive watch for collectors and wearers.
The Aquaracer uses a rubber strap and comes in both chronograph (three-counter calibre 16) and automatic (Calibre 5) models. The chronograph models are generally around $1,000 more than the automatic models. Both models are quality, durable diving watches.
Check out this detailed review on the Aquaracer below – FWIW, I don’t think this diver deserves any hate!
What I like a lot about the Aquaracer is that it doesn’t try and be a Submariner clone. It is bold and unique in its own right. Go elsewhere for a Submariner clone. Choose a Tag Heuer Aquaracer if you want an extremely durable Swiss-engineered dive watch that has many of the features that rival its more expensive counterparts.
The 49mm case is the largest in our roundup of favorite dive watches, so it’s mainly worn by men and you’d definitely want to put it on your wrist before buying. Other notable features are the ceramic unidirectional bezel which is great for resisting scratches and bumps, anti-reflective sapphire window and a date window at 6 O’clock. Aesthetically, the subtle waves behind the dial give it a smooth look against black face and the luminous indicators work well at night.
This watch definitely makes a statement, and whilst it may not have the same branding appeal as a Rolex or Omega, it is definitely a great piece of diving gear if you prefer slightly larger timepieces that won’t weigh you down. We’ve seen some good deals on these men’s models too, so don’t be afraid to shop around.
The simple, practical design with a stainless steel case and silicone strap performs very well under low light conditions, with bold, luminous hands, hour markers and graduations on the unidirectional stainless steel bezel. Bezel rotation is met with solid, deep clicks – something that is often missing in less expensive dive watches. The date function features a magnified display for easy reading.
This should be on your radar if you want a practical dive watch rated to 500m, but aren’t prepared to fork out thousands more for brand or prestige appeal. It is a very good piece for the price and worthy of consideration.
What’s your favorite dive watch to consider? Feel like we’ve left out some worthy tool watches? Let us know in the comments below. Happy diving!
Law Enforcement Officers (LEOs) have a super demanding job and need a watch that is up to the task. After speaking with LEOs (police officers and military police) and conducting other online research, we’ve determined the best watches for LEOs have the following attributes:
Taking the above attributes into account, we’ve reviewed many watches and narrowed our choice down to the following top 5.
The entry level G-Shock by Casio has a lot going for it. It’s cheap, super tough, shock resistant and has enough basic features to get the job done.
Given the price, popularity and unassuming nature of this watch, there is very little downside to purchasing one. If you like it, chances are you’ll upgrade models to something like a GWM5610 Solar (also in this list), G-Shock Mudman or Rangeman down the track.
Worst case if you do decide it’s not the right watch for you, at least you haven’t spent much money on it and it hasn’t drawn any unwanted attention. If you’re starting your career as a police officer, we think this is the best G-Shock option.
The Suunto Core All Black (or Military) is a popular watch that comes packed with a host of features. An affordable Altitude, Barometer & Compass (ABC) watch that has a good backlight when you need it. Other features include a storm sensing function that recognises a drop in air pressure and sends you a warning. Note, there is no GPS function. If you need GPS you’ll need a Suunto Ambit3 or similar model.
The popularity of this watch has led to it achieving cult status, which has only increased since the release of the popular Equalizer movies where Denzel wears a slightly modified version of the Suunto Core All Black.
The biggest downside to this watch for a LEO is actually its good looks as it has the potential to draw a little too much attention from superiors.
This watch is one to consider if you’re after a feature packed watch with sleek good looks. This could easily be your 24/7 watch, which is certainly something to consider as it means you’ll never have to remember to change watches for duty.
If you’re comfortable wearing a slightly flashy watch, there’s very little stopping this from being the watch for you.
The G-Shock GWM5610 Solar is about as close to a set and forget watch as you can get. With a solar power source and atomic timekeeping, you really don’t need to worry about anything.
Add in the toughness of a G-Shock watch, water resistance of 200m (660 ft) and a discrete square form factor, you’ve got a watch that many LEOs swear by as their main duty watch.
The downsides are minimal. It’s solar powered, so if you’re using the light for an extended period of time it will reach its limit and stop working until exposed to sunlight again.
Of course looks are subjective. But, I think it’s fair to say this isn’t the sexiest watch on the list. That is great whilst on duty as it won’t draw attention, but the flip side is you may want another watch when off duty.
Bottom line is this is a fantastic watch for the on duty LEO. It is roughly double the cost of the other G-Shock on this list, so whether you choose this will depend on whether you like the convenience of solar power and atomic timekeeping in a discrete package.
The Seiko 5 SNK809 is an entry level automatic timepiece that has packed great build quality, versatile styling and durability into an affordable price.
It is an automatic, which means it is self winding with arm movement. Once fully wound, it has a 40 hour power reserve. You will need to move around 8 hours each day to ensure it maintains power and accuracy, but this should be fine unless you’re an officer normally chained to a desk.
This simple yet stylish stainless steel watch can easily be dressed up for any formal events with a new strap/bracelet. It’s simplicity also means it isn’t overly flashy, so it shouldn’t catch any unwanted attention.
The biggest drawbacks are that it’s an analog which clearly doesn’t have a lot of the digital features and instant readability of the digital watches in this list. This may be a huge issue depending on the requirements of your job.
If you are in the market for an affordable, durable and simple automatic that you can wear 24/7, the Seiko 5 is certainly worth exploring further. Potentially a great option for police officers as they start to move up the ranks.
We are big fans of the Luminox 3051 as it’s easily one of the best tactical watches for LEOs. We’ve previously written about this watch specifically for police officers and whilst it is the most expensive in our list, it is still an affordable option for most.
The readability of this watch under ALL conditions, including darkness and underwater is what really makes this watch stand out (pun intended) from the rest. The tritium in the hands and markers is made from a radioactive isotope that slowly decays over time. This is different from most other watches that use phosphorescent inserts that need to be recharged by an external light source. The Navy Seal pedigree means this watch has top, reliable water resistance too.
If your role involves a lot of water contact you might also want to consider a good dive watch as part of your gear setup.
We’ve feature the black out version here to complete the tactical, military watch feel. But you could easily opt for the regular/non-black out model (we’ve featured it in our Best Watches for EMTs & Paramedics guide). The case is made from stainless steel with a Carbonox coating which increases durability and provides the nice black matte finish.
This watch clearly isn’t for all LEOs. And we accept that. We’ve included it here as a good tactical option or those that value luminosity above everything else.
Are you a LEO with more suggestions we should review? Please feel free to let us know what you’ve been using below and whether you’d buy it again.
James Bond wears the Seiko G757 watch in Octopussy. James Bond became and instant hit on the big screen after Sean Connery’s portrayal in Ian Flemming’s “Dr. No”. Since then, many actors have taken up the mantle of the gentleman spy, including Roger Moore. Moore starred as a stylish, sharp, and dashing version of James Bond in 1983’s Octopussy. In the movie, Moore’s Bond is given a Seiko G757 by “Q”.
The Seiko that James is given in the movie looks exactly like the one Seiko actually made with one small exception: James’ watch doubled as an impossibly small TV. The real Seiko G757 is a classy watch reminiscent of early 80s super cars, like the Lamborghini. Stainless steel band with a mineral glass face. The watch is a classic piece that is no longer made by Seiko, and you’ll be hard pressed to find them in good condition.
While the watch isn’t very high end, it does have the same look and feel as the G757, and with a price of just , it is also rather affordable.
The watch itself is water resistant to 100 meters (about 330 feet) which, they claim, is suitable for swimming and snorkling, but I would caution against that. If price is an indicator of quality – and with watches it usually is – a watch is likely not to be tested for its durability. This watch is probably fine to shower with, and maybe light swimming, but I wouldn’t take it into the ocean or submerge it in water for any lengthy period.
Another consideration for this watch is its quartz movement. A Quartz movement watch will always be more accurate than a self-winding watch, but will require you to change the battery out whenever it dies. They claim the watch as a 10 year battery, and while I have no experience with this particular watch or battery, I would like to see such a thing for myself.
All in all, the A1200WHD by Casio is a good substitute for the Seiko G757 as long as you aren’t expecting it to have a built in TV.