I was thinking about what type of watch collection I’d build if I was given $5,000 AUD. It’s actually a fairly difficult price point, because it only allows you to have one “good” watch and a hand full of more affordable / fun pieces to mix it up. That being said, here’s my pick, selecting from pieces I’ve personally owned.
1. The “Good” Watch: Tudor Black Bay 41mm Diver
This is one of those really obvious choices, but hear me out. The Black Bay range is so versatile. Put it on leather and it can be dressed up, on fabric and it can be super casual, or on a bracelet for somewhere in between. It’s such a solid watch, super reliable, fairly affordable to maintain and has all the modern goodness with that vintage feel and nod to the past.
When I owned this watch, I took it for granted. I have always been climbing the ladder so to speak, buying and selling to get that Submariner one day. The problem with this mindset is that it gets in the way of enjoying what’s in front of you, and I really regret not enjoying this piece a little more.
2. The Beater Watch: Seiko SKX007
This is hands down the greatest watch for under $500 and I will always own one. Modded or stock, K or J, on the jubilee, fabric or rubber, it’s the watch that can do it all and at a fraction of the cost. I’ve spoken about this watch to death as with everyone else on the internet, but I couldn’t make this list without the trusty SKX
3. The Retro Watch: Casio Databank
For me as with many out there, putting on a Casio is like stepping into a time machine. It takes me back to about 14 years ago, when I was with my girlfriend (now my wife) at the American Apparel store on Chapel St. At the counter they had all these Casio’s behind a display case. We each picked one out and didn’t think much of it, but for me that was the spark that lead to this great love for watches.
The Databank is an amazing watch. It’s tapered bracelet, all gold finish and unmistakable 80s feel is a must have for every collector. It won’t be an every day watch, but it certainly has its place in the watch box.
4. The Affordable Chrono: Seiko SNA411 Flightmaster
I don’t care if it’s the obvious choice, TGVs favourite and been done to death! There aren’t many watches out there that can beat this when it comes to value and Seiko coolness.
It has it all. Original design. Affordability. 200 meter water resistance. That striking flash of colour. Wearability with its shorter lugs. Bang per buck.
I recently re-bought this when Drop had it for 199 USD, as I sold my first one and really regret letting it go.
This is one of those watches that looks better in person. That lovely domed hardlex looks fantastic at different angles, and lovely jet black dial has a real depth to it.
A Tudor, two Seiko’s and a Casio. Four watches from three amazing brands, packed with rich history and heritage. When it comes to spending 5k, this would be my choice
If you’re reading this you might be in the search for a watch, jump over to my Instagram and reach out if you have any questions or just to say hello: @melbournewatchreplic