I’m sorry; I misunderstood the task at hand. This is not about me being given €7,500 to spend on three watches… I’ve reluctantly given myself a purchasing embargo, and for an addict, that’s not easy, hence the happy outburst. But I still relish the challenge of picking the best watches under €2,500, which is not easy.

I will try not to imagine this being a personal budget for three good new watches, but the choices will still be personal. Of course, I have my journalist hat on, so you should find some objectively solid favorites here. That’s my goal, at least.

The best watches under €2,500 — The bulletproof Sinn U50

There are fashions all around us, and we follow them whether we like to or not, even subconsciously. I’m just as guilty as anyone, and something new and exciting often leads me to forget a good watch. In this case, that’s the impressive Sinn U50, which is not the latest thing. I had this on a long-term loan from Sinn in Frankfurt about three years ago, and I was blown away by its crystal-clear, crisp dial and functional design. A very German design it is, and it’s not a cliché without substance. After many years of owning BMWs, I appreciate pure functional perfection. This includes the deliciously solid haptics of the Sinn captive bezel and the U50’s discrete but massive specs.

Watches Under €2500

This watch has come back to my mind as grow increasingly weary of retro. The U50 is modern in all the right ways and has a resounding sense of focused restraint. After all, Sinn is proud to underline its focus on instruments rather than mere watches. In the U50, this is obvious in all details of the soft, blasted, and Tegimented case. Yes, that enigmatic term from Sinn denotes a very scratch-resistant hardening of the steel. Admittedly, to stay under the budget, I’d have to get the version with just a Tegimented steel bezel, but I also love the black-bezel SDR. That means €2,250 on a leather strap for the sake of this story, but I would unofficially stretch to €2,550 for the SDR with the bright red silicone strap to match those block-tastic hands and markings. In any of the seven versions, the Sinn U50 does not feel like a 41mm watch, and the 11.5mm thickness is jaw-droppingly slim for a 500m-rated diver.

Best Watches under €2500

Visions of the future — The SpaceOne Jumping Hour

The SpaceOne Jumping Hour in forged carbon for a genuine bargain-like €1,900 (before VAT) speaks to me on many levels. It looks like nothing else but a 50–60× more expensive Urwerk, MB&F, or De Bethune, so it’s a big win for the brand. It is also madly polarizing and refuses to cater to the persistent retro trend. But is that true? That’s where SpaceOne plays its cards so well with this curvy beast. The soft spaceship shape looks futuristic while also reminding me of old future-focused cartoons and ’60s paperback covers.


The jump-hour complication is not new either, but set within the intensely cool form of forged carbon, it all gels. And yes, this watch might be about to land on the planet Proxima Centauri b. Forged carbon is much less expensive than it used to be, so at less than €2K, this carbon bargain is big enough to be sold out from SpaceOne’s homepage. In fact, since I originally wrote this story, most of the other versions have sold out too. Thankfully, three units of the Destro Brushed Titanium variant are still available for the same price. But if you’re feeling like spending €490 over budget, the new SpaceOne Tellurium is even more alluring.

Watches Under €2500

The best watches under €2,500 — The Tissot PRX Automatic Chronograph in green

I was seriously smitten after reading Jorg’s story on the latest green-dial PRX models, especially with this €2,045 big boy. But after feeling the 40mm PRX Powermatic 80 was a bit big for my wrist, why would I be more than willing to wear this even larger 42mm chronograph? Well, for one thing, Tissot’s simple but still exclusive-feeling PRX bracelet is comfortable. I’d prefer it if the end links were not fixed or had a more wrist-hugging angle, but many of you have larger wrists than me. Plus, this is all about that dial in Tissot’s best green ever, and I’m quite enamored.

Best Watches under €2500

It’s almost like a dark olive-green dial that has turned tropical, that desired flaw we all pine for. It has the same vibe as a faded Royal Oak dial from the ’70s, and for me, the tone is just right. Sure, it riffs off that very same AP icon but with a somehow bolder presence, and Tissot has nailed it. The 15.4mm thickness and the 46.5mm relative length (minus the fixed end links) are prominent. But I’ll try it out shortly, and if that green is as good in real life, it’ll be on my want list. Movement-wise, the automatic ETA A05.H31 constitutes a modern Valjoux 7753 with a 60-hour power reserve. This PRX Automatic Chronograph is simply a very good sports watch, and, no, I don’t even mind the 4:30 date window. Such is my lust for green.

What about you, my dear Fratelli? Do you reckon these are three worthy contenders for the best watches under €2,500? Feel free to let me know of other suggestions you may have or thoughts on these in the comments.