10 Best Automatic Watches for Men in 2021 | Complete Buying Guide

Published on 12th September

Automatic watches can be magical. They sit on your wrist and power themselves by basically absorbing all the surplus energy you release through the movements of your hand throughout the day. In a way, you feel you are at one with your watch. That’s what makes automatic watches so compelling and so desired universally. 

Automatic watches are different from quartz watches as quartz watches run on a battery while automatic watches run from energy stored on a mainspring. Automatic watches are similar to mechanical pieces in every way, except for having the ability to basically “charge” themselves.

 

What is an Automatic or “Self-winding” watch?

An automatic watch is one that winds itself using the movement of the wearer. Apart from the automatic winding mechanism, they’re identical to standard mechanical hand-wound watches.

 

How does an Automatic watch work?

When we wear an automatic watch and carry forth with our day-to-day activities, the watch winds itself using energy from the movements of the arms. This is achieved by using an oscillating rotor that is connected to the mainspring through a sequence of gears to wind it up. When an automatic watch is worn daily, it seldom needs to be manually topped up and will work just with the normal motions of our hands.

 

Do you need to wear an Automatic watch every day?

It’s not necessary to wear an automatic watch every day. The power can be topped up by either manually winding the crown or shuffling the watch from side to side to make it wind itself. But of course, it’s always better to wear it as the mechanisms will last longer when they’re in normal use.

The best automatic watches for beginners are also the best affordable automatic watches, making them the top automatic watches. So let’s have a look at 10 of them!

10 Best Automatic Watches For Men

VOSTOK | Men’s Komandirskie K-65 Automatic Self-Winding Russian Militarwithy Style Diver Watch | WR 200 m | Model 650840

Men's Automatic Watches
VOSTOK | Men’s Komandirskie K-65 Automatic Self-Winding Russian Military Style Diver Watch | WR 200 m | Model 650840 (Image: Amazon)

The Komandirskie is the iconic Amphibia’s brass-cased cousin. While the brass case makes it much more affordable, its durability and the resilience of the chrome plating in the long term can be questionable. But there haven’t been any proper negative reports, making it an overall safe choice to go for. Its very eccentric Russian design that’s unique, different, and a breath of fresh air easily makes it, one of the best automatic watches for men.

Key Features:

  • Unique red color scheme
  • Bi-directional timing bezel
  • Water-resistance of 200m
  • Choice of stainless steel bracelet or nylon strap
  • Comes in a variety of styles and colors

Vostok Men’s Komandirskie K-65 Automatic Self-Winding Russian Militarwithy Style Diver Watch : Specifications

Dimensions 40mm case diameter, 15mm thickness, 20mm lug width.
Movement Vostok Caliber 2416B, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 200m.
Crystal Acrylic.
Materials Brass case & stainless steel bracelet.
Pros
  • Excellent for swimming and diving.
  • The timing bezel gives it more functionality.

  • Unbelievable value for money.

  • Robust workhorse movement.

Cons
  • The brass case may not be as durable as a stainless steel one.

Rating: 4.5/5

 

Swatch Men’s YIS400 Sistem Earth Sistem51 Irony Analog Automatic Watch

Affordable Men's Automatic Watch
Swatch Men’s YIS400 Sistem Earth Sistem51 Irony Analog Automatic Watch (Image: Amazon)

Swatch was Switzerland’s response to the quartz crisis. As an amalgamation of “Second” & “Watch”, Swatch produces a vast range of entire machine assembled and artistically prominent designs as a fun secondary timepiece. A great choice for someone who wants a high-quality Swiss-made timepiece at an absolute bargain! One of the best automatic watches for men when it comes to light-hearted fun, as well as one of the best automatic watches for men when it comes to variety!

Key Features:

  • Date complication
  • Display case back
  • Completely machine-made movement and timepiece
  • Patterned & sunburst dial
  • Comes in a variety of styles

Swatch Men’s YIS400 Sistem Earth Sistem51 Irony Analog Automatic Watch : Specifications

Dimensions 42mm case diameter, 13.8mm thickness, 21mm lug width.
Movement Sistem51, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 30m.
Crystal Mineral.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Artistic & unique designs.
  • Swiss-made; High quality.

  • Excellent value for money.

  • Reliable & accurate movement.

Cons
  • Lack of flexibility with straps & impractical 21mm lug width.
  • Not suitable for water activity.

Rating: 4.6/5

 

Seiko Men’s SNKK52 Seiko 5 Automatic Gold-Tone Stainless Steel Bracelet Watch

Seiko Men's Affordable Automatic Watch
Seiko Men’s SNKK52 Seiko 5 Automatic Gold-Tone Stainless Steel Bracelet Watch (Image: Amazon)

This specific Seiko 5 is modeled with a design inspired by the Patek Phillipe Nautilus. While this is one of the more expensive Seiko 5s, Its sheer classy charm makes it all worth the extra bucks. It is one of the best automatic watches for under $200. And with that striking gold-plated case & bracelet combination, who’d say no? Being so stylish, it is one of the best automatic watches for men out there.

Key Features:

  • Gold-plated stainless steel case with classic design
  • Day-Date complication
  • Day function in both English and Spanish
  • Reliable workhorse in-house Seiko automatic movement
  • Gold-plated stainless steel bracelet

Seiko Men’s SNKK52 Seiko 5 Automatic Gold-Tone Stainless Steel Bracelet Watch : Specifications

Dimensions 35.5mm diameter, 6.8mm thickness, 15.36mm lug width.
Movement Seiko Caliber 7S26, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 30m.
Crystal Hardlex.
Materials Stainless steel case & bracelet.
Pros
  • Classical & attractive design.
  • Affordable, budget-friendly.

  • Historically significant.

  • High-quality construction.

  • Affordable to maintain.

Cons
  • No hand-winding. Fully automatic.
  • The integrated bracelet gives little to no choice of extra straps.

Rating: 4.6/5

 

Timex Men’s Marlin Automatic 40mm Watch

Best Automatic Watch under $500
Timex Men’s Marlin Automatic 40mm Watch (Image: Amazon)

The Timex Marlin has always been a historical icon in terms of being an affordable watch that was also highly attractive and robust. In the 60s, it did compete with the other best automatic watches for men, as well as the mechanical ones. The modern reissues include the 34mm hand-wound edition and this. The 40mm automatic version. A fantastic choice if you want history along with the conveniences of an automatic movement. One of the best automatic watches for men.

Key Features:

  • Date complication
  • Gold-plated stainless steel case
  • Quick-release springbars
  • Black dial
  • Display case back

Timex Men’s Marlin Automatic 40mm Watch

Dimensions 40mm case diameter, 13.25mm thickness, 19.75mm lug width.
Movement Miyota 8215, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 30m.
Crystal Acrylic.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Elegant & simplistic design.
  • Good quality of construction.

  • Robust & reliable Japanese movement.

  • Great history.

Cons
  • Acrylic crystal can scratch easily.

Rating: 4.6/5

Bulova Men’s Military Hack Watch with Black Leather NATO Strap (Model: 96A246)

Best Automatic Watch under $200
Bulova Mens Military Hack Watch wiith Black Leather NATO Strap (Model: 96A246) (Image: Amazon)

Bulova was originally an American brand, and with those roots, also came a history of building military watches. Even back then, there produced some of the best automatic watches for men. Here’s a wonderful reissue from their archives. They call it, the ‘Hack’, named after its ability to hack or stop the movement temporarily when the crown is pulled out and resume it when it’s pushed back in. This was vital for militaristic precision while syncing and setting watches. It’s a very convenient feature as such, making it one of the best automatic watches for men.

Key Features:

  • Authentic military design
  • Variety of options for dial shades
  • Leather NATO strap
  • Hacking Japanese automatic movement

Bulova Men’s Military Hack Watch with Black Leather NATO Strap (Model: 96A246)

Dimensions 38mm case diameter, 13.45mm thickness, 18mm lug width.
Movement Miyota 82S0, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 30m.
Crystal Mineral.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Historically very significant.
  • Reliable & accurate Japanese movement.

  • Historically accurate design.

  • Easy & affordable to maintain.

Cons
  • More on the expensive side.
  • Not suited for water activities.

Rating: 4.7/5

 

Laco Augsburg Type A Dial German Automatic Pilot Watch 861688

Best Automatic Watch under $500
Laco Augsburg Type A Dial German Automatic Pilot Watch 861688 (Image: Amazon)

Laco once used to be a genuine manufacturer of World War II German Flieger watches along with Stowa, Wempe, IWC & A.Lange & Söhne. They have carried forth this history to the present day with their vast collection of Flieger watches. This is an excellent example for an amazing price, largely so due to the cost-effective Japanese movement making it one of the best automatic watches for men that’s not cost-prohibitive.

Key Features:

  • German Flieger
  • Display case back
  • Powerful lumination
  • Japanese movement

Laco Augsburg Type A Dial German Automatic Pilot Watch 861688

Dimensions 42mm case diameter, 11.75mm thickness, 20mm lug width.
Movement Miyota 821A, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 50m.
Crystal Sapphire.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Authentic German Flieger style watch.
  • Historically important.

  • Reliable & robust Japanese movement.

  • Durable sapphire crystal.

  • Suitable for light water activities.

Cons
  • The rugged design is not suited for some occasions.

Rating: 4.7/5

 

Tissot Men’s Le Locle Stainless Steel Dress Watch Black T0064071605300

Tissot best automatic watch under $500
Tissot Men’s Le Locle Stainless Steel Dress Watch Black T0064071605300 (Image: Amazon)

Tissot is a pioneer in terms of bringing American-style mass production of timepieces in Switzerland while retaining high standards of quality and craftsmanship. Named after the place the company was founded, the Le Locle line of timepieces reflects grand elegance combined with a fairly affordable price. A lovely combination and one of the best automatic watches for men out there and one of the best automatic watches under $500.

Key Features:

  • Date complication
  • Classical & traditional design
  • Display case back
  • Choice of black and white dials

Tissot Men’s Le Locle Stainless Steel Dress Watch Black T0064071605300 : Specifications

Dimensions 39mm case diameter, 9mm thickness, 19mm lug width.
Movement Tissot Powermatic 80.111.
Water-Resistance 30m.
Crystal Sapphire.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Beautiful & grand design.
  • Swiss-made; High quality.

  • Very precise and reliable movement.

  • Durable sapphire crystal.

Cons
  • Not suited for water activity.

Rating: 4.7/5

 

Zeppelin Men’s Automatic Watch with Brown Dial Analogue Display and Brown Leather Strap 70605

Best Automatic Watch under $500
Zeppelin Men’s Automatic Watch with Brown Dial Analogue Display and Brown Leather Strap 70605 (Image: Amazon)

Graf Zeppelin is the name behind the legendary pre-war German airships. Now, the brand has been capturing its legacy in the form of timepieces. Beautiful and classy designs with robust movements are the name of the game here. This specific piece with the brown dial is particularly wonderful to behold, making it an ideal contender for this list of 10 best automatic watches for men.

Key Features:

  • Unique brown dial
  • Date complication
  • Power reserve
  • Small seconds
  • Japanese Movement

Zeppelin Men’s Automatic Watch with Brown Dial Analogue Display and Brown Leather Strap 70605 : Specifications

Dimensions 41mm case diameter, 12mm thickness, 19mm lug width.
Movement Miyota 9132, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 50m.
Crystal Mineral.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Made in Germany; Very high quality.
  • Enchanting design.

  • Precise and reliable Japanese movement.

  • Great value for money.

Cons
  • Large domed crystal can easily scratch.

Rating: 4.8/5

Victorinox Men’s 241621 AirBoss Analog Display Swiss Automatic Silver Watch

Best Automatic Watch
Victorinox Men’s 241621 AirBoss Analog Display Swiss Automatic Silver Watch (Image: Amazon)

Here’s probably one of the greatest ever deals when it comes to Swiss-made automatic chronographs. Featuring the ever-cherished Valjoux 7750, the Victorinox AirBoss is a pilot’s watch treat. It’s difficult to even think of another example in this price range that offers this much value. A true winner and an amazing contender for this list of 10 best swiss made automatic watches for men.

Key Features:

  • Chronograph function
  • Date complication
  • Pilot’s watch design
  • Display case back
  • 100m water resistance; Suitable for swimming

Victorinox Men’s 241621 AirBoss Analog Display Swiss Automatic Silver Watch : Specifications

Dimensions 42mm case diameter, 14.65mm thickness, 22mm lug width.
Movement Valjoux 7750, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 100m.
Crystal Sapphire.
Materials Stainless steel case & bracelet.
Pros
  • Swiss-made; Very high quality.
  • Durable sapphire crystal.

  • Iconic Swiss chronograph movement.

  • Suitable for swimming.

  • Spectacular value for money.

Cons
  • It may is not versatile enough for some occasions.

Rating: 4.9/5

 

Junghans Max Bill Automatic Mens Watch – 38mm Analog Black Face Classic Watch with Luminous Hands and Date – Stainless Steel Black Leather Band Luxury Watch for Men Made in Germany 027/4701.00

Best Automatic Watch
Junghans Max Bill Automatic Mens Watch – 38mm Analog Black Face Classic Watch with Luminous Hands and Date – Stainless Steel Black Leather Band Luxury Watch for Men Made in Germany 027/4701.00 (Image: Amazon)

Here’s an iconic German watch that follows the Bauhaus principle of ‘Form follows function.’ A true icon of design, existing to please the visual senses. The simplicity and harmony of the dial are simply mind-blowing. It is easily one of the all-time greats when it comes to design and style, and is easily one of the best automatic watches for men out there as well as one of the best automatic watches under $1000.

Key Features:

  • 38-hour power reserve
  • Display case back
  • German Bauhaus design
  • Black dial and strap 
  • Date complication

Junghans Max Bill Automatic Mens Watch – 38mm Analog Black Face Classic Watch with Luminous Hands and Date – Stainless Steel Black Leather Band Luxury Watch for Men Made in Germany 027/4701.00 : Specifications

Dimensions 38mm diameter, 10mm thickness, 18mm lug width.
Movement Junghans J800.1, Automatic.
Water-Resistance 30m.
Crystal Acrylic.
Materials Stainless steel case & leather strap.
Pros
  • Bauhaus minimalistic design.
  • Well-proven and reliable automatic movement.

  • Historically significant.

  • Excellent for formal occasions.

Cons
  • Acrylic crystal is prone to scratching.

Rating: 4.8/5

Conclusion

The world of watches is massive. Automatic timepieces are fascinating and curious works of art that deserve to be cherished for what they are. But whether you desire an automatic watch or a quartz watch, there will always be one ready for you. It’s all a matter of personal tastes that should determine what watch you buy. You’re the one who’s gonna enjoy it, after all! Hopefully, this list of the 10 best automatic watches for men helped you in deciding your future acquisition?

 

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