How To Get The Best Tactical Watch For The Money

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Having a classic watch on your wrist will surely help you in getting somewhere on time, but with the best military watch, you can get much-needed help when you’re camping, hiking, or hunting outdoors. On that occasions, you would need a powerful and helpful tool that can assist you in your adventures to the same extent as a durable pair of boots or a good knife would.

Buying tactical watches just to look cool should not be your goal, but it should be about excellent features like durability, functionality, and quality, among others. However, nowadays, tactical watches for men offer all those features, but still manage to keep the beautiful look, which makes them even more appealing to the buyers.

There are plenty of them on the market at the moment, but we compiled this list in order to help you choose the best tactical watches for your needs and your budget, so stay with us and read the following guide before we give you reviews on some of the great products.

What to look for when buying a military watch?

So, are you on the market for top military watches, but you don’t know much about it, and you need guidance? Don’t worry, because we are here to help, and all you need to do is to follow the relevant info.

1. Durability

Probably the most crucial feature when selecting the best tactical watch, so you must take this into consideration before anything else. Consider the ones that are made of highly durable materials and offer excellent shock and abrasion resistance. Watches that are equipped with Sapphire glass lenses are much better in protecting from abrasion than the standard mineral glass lenses.

2. Design

Normally, the military watch should be robust and dark colored so it won’t attract attention. That being said, you should choose between black, dark gray, and camouflage green, and you’d be ready for your outdoor activities.

3. Band

The important part of durability, the band, is also one of the features that must cross your mind when picking the best military watch. The band should be tough enough, but also, it should be comfortable to wear, and still secure the watch on your wrist, so you don’t lose it while maneuvering.

The silicone rubber band is highly recommended because silicone can withstand almost any weather conditions. The paracord is also a quite popular material for the band as it has a double purpose, but we cannot recommend leather or metal because it can be affected by bad weather, and even can cause skin irritation during sweating.

4. Battery life

If you are interested in getting the most from the battery, then you should consider tactical watches without GPS, because the battery can last up to a year. Some of them are even solar rechargeable, but the ones with GPS offer advanced features and are equipped with lithium-ion batteries.

5. Tactical/Military Features

When you are in the hunt for best watches for military, you don’t look for time and date only, but for some great features like compass, barometer, altimeter, and night vision. Altimeter and compass can be your best friend when it comes to orientation, so military watches with compass are among the favorites.

The barometer will give you much-needed info about atmospheric pressure and help you with the weather forecast, while other features can include sunrise/sunset times, storm alarm, and moon calendar, among others.

6. GPS

It is a beneficial feature that will get you the exact coordinates of your current location and also can be used for navigating your planned routes. Although watches with GPS drain battery faster and are a bit pricier, this feature is simply awesome.

The 8 Best Tactical Watches in 2017

1. Suunto Traverse Alpha

Suunto Traverse Alpha
List Price: $569.00
Price: $392.79
You Save: $176.21
Price Disclaimer

This watch provides outstanding durability and various tactical/military features, that’s why we put it at the top of our best military watches list. The case is made of sturdy composite materials, while the bezel is from stainless steel, and the strap is water-resistant and quite comfortable to wear.

The built-in GPS is another fantastic feature and it can come quite handy during hunting or conduct tactical activities. If you are military enthusiast, you will be delighted to know that this watch has Military Grid Reference System (MGRS), which is a common feature among NATO forces.

The navigation on this bad boy is extremely accurate, while the automatic shot detection allows you to detect exactly when the shot is fired so you can save the coordinates as a waypoint. Furthermore, the Suunto Movescount app is available for download and you can pair your smartphone with your watch, which will allow you to change the settings directly from your phone.

What’s even more interesting, the watch can show you phone notifications such as missed calls or messages. Other useful features are altimeter, barometer, compass, moon phase calendar, thermometer, sunrise/sunset alarm, moonrise/moonset alarm, and backlight that works well with night vision goggles.

Pros:

  • Sapphire glass lens
  • Extraordinary durability
  • Quite easy to use
  • Excellent tactical features
  • Navigation and tracking

Cons:

  • The battery life is a bit shorter

2. Garmin Tactix Bravo

Garmin Tactix Bravo, Black with Silicone Band
List Price: $599.99
Price: $599.99
Price Disclaimer

Another sophisticated military watch that is a perfect fit for tactical use, mountaineering, trekking, backpacking, hunting, or hiking. Same as with the Suunto Traverse Alpha, the Garmin Tactix’s bezel is made of stainless steel, while the case is extremely durable. It also has a Sapphire glass lens for abrasion protection and it can be found in two versions – one is with a silicone strap and the other has a nylon strap.

The built-in GPS will give you the coordinates of your current position, while it also supports the navigation, which will come handy for your pre-planned routes.

Other tactical features include map and jumpmaster, which is excellent in navigating you to the spot where you should land with the parachute. Of course, the Garmin Connect app can be synchronized with your smartphone so you can track important notifications via Bluetooth connection.

Additional features that make this baby one of the best military grade watches are altimeter, barometer, thermometer, compass, sun and moon calendars, and even hunt/fish calendar.

Pros:

  • Fantastic tactical features
  • Tracking and navigation included
  • Excellent durability
  • Sapphire glass lens
  • Wireless connectivity
  • Night vision goggle compatible

Cons:

  • Not so good at tracking sleep
  • A bit overpriced watch

3. Casio Rangeman GW9400-3

If you are an outdoor enthusiast and you’re looking for durable watch, this g shock tactical watch will satisfy your needs thanks to its tough and rugged design. This watch provides excellent abrasion and shock resistance and it is made of highly durable materials that also protect it from water.

Thanks to the cylindrical shape of the buttons, you can press them even with your gloves on without a problem. The Casio Rangeman is equipped with compass, altimeter/barometer, and thermometer.

That’s how you can track weather conditions and predict the forecast with barometer, while the thermometer will measure water or air temperature. But remember, the air temperature measurement cannot be 100% accurate as long as you wear the watch because your body temperature will influence its accuracy.

This top military watch will display the accurate time on your display the whole time thanks to time calibration radio signals that will be updated up to six times per day. It comes with a solar rechargeable battery that can last up to eight months without a single exposure to sunlight.

Pros:

  • Excellent battery
  • Sturdy and cylindrical buttons
  • Pretty attractive design
  • Camouflage color
  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • There’s no GPS
  • Display overview is a bit confusing

4. Suunto Core Military

Thanks to its great functionality and durability, this watch is quite popular among law enforcement officer, soldiers, hunters and other tactical enthusiasts and that’s why it is one of the best tactical watches currently on the market. What is particularly interesting is that the design of this watch is something between tactical and elegant, so it can be used in everyday situations, not only for tactical or military reasons.

If you’re using its features on a regular basis, the battery life can be shorter, but in time mode, it can last up to 12 months, and it’s user replaceable.

The Suunto Core Military includes the following features: thermometer, barometer, altimeter, and compass, while advanced features are a storm alarm and depth meter. The depth meter is there to track your dive down to ten meters when snorkeling, while the storm alarm will notify you about any pressure changes, which usually lead to storms.

All in all, this Suunto model is one of the best military watches and we like its design, user-friendly interface, and excellent display.

Pros:

  • Great user-friendly interface
  • Elegant design
  • Perfect for everyday use, not only military or tactical
  • Nice features
  • The battery life

Cons:

  • Shock resistance is not so great
  • No GPS built-in

5. Casio PRW6000Y-1A Protrek

This Casio model is best suitable for the ones who like to have a combination of analog and digital display on their watches. Just like with display, the design is also a mix of elegant, sporty, and military, which is quite nice for every day, casual use. The case and the strap on this watch are top quality thanks to metal and carbon inserts.

The digital display has such features as temperature, altitude, and bearing. One of the advanced features is auto hand shift, which allows you to read measurements with easy when the hands would cover the display.

The Casio Protrek is one of the tactical watches that also features barometer, thermometer, compass, and altimeter. Additionally, it is equipped with useful storm alarm which will detect the upcoming storm, so you can potentially rearrange your plans, if you planned something to do outdoors. The solar rechargeable battery can last up to six months without minimum exposure to light.

Same as with its cousin the Casio Rangeman, the Protrek receives radio signals up to six times daily and therefore, it is always 100% accurate. However, this military watch is a bit overpriced considering it doesn’t have GPS and it is the only downside, but it’s quite durable and efficient, and you should give it a go.

Pros:

  • Fantastic functionality
  • Pretty durable watch
  • Digital-analog display
  • Excellent features
  • Attractive design

Cons:

  • The price could be a bit lower
  • It doesn’t include GPS

6. Suunto X-Lander Military

Another member of the Suunto’s family, this X-Lander is one of the top military watches and is very popular with law enforcement and military personnel. It has effective functions, extreme robustness, and military design, while the case is made from aluminum and strip is quite durable rubber. As it is the case with previous watches we mentioned here, this one also has basic features like barometer, thermometer, altimeter, and compass.

What is interesting with this model is that it has a display of seven segments that offers a fantastic overview, and when it comes to low visibility, you’ll be glad to have electro-luminescent backlight. Other useful features are laps and chronometer, but this watch lacks some good features like button lock, sunrise/sunset times, dual time, altitude graph, automatic alti/baro switch, and storm alarm.

The rest of the features are pretty much the same to Suunto Core Military’s. The biggest upside is the robustness that makes the watch practically indestructible.

Pros:

  • High-quality watch
  • Robustness
  • Military design
  • Chronograph included

Cons:

  • An older version

7. Casio G-Shock GA 100

Casio Men's GA100-1A1 Black
List Price: $73.93
Price: $73.92
You Save: $0.01
Price Disclaimer

If you are in the hunt for a little lower priced watch, this Casio G-Shock is among the best military watches under 100 dollars and offers great functionality and value. This best tactical g shock watch is digital, durable, and water resistant up to 660 feet. Talking about durability, this bad boy can be dropped from ten meters high and it will still escape without a scratch, while the battery life can last up to two years, so you don’t have to be very gentle with it.

It is an all-back watch and has both analog and digital displays, while it weighs at 5.6 ounces. This Casio model is quite big and will not go unnoticed on your wrist, so if you prefer smaller watches, this isn’t for you. However, it looks is more than decent and it has several interesting features such as 1/1000 second stop-watch, auto calendar, speed indicator, and hourly time signal.

The display can be set to 12-hour or 24-hour time format, and also offers a snooze alarm and four daily alarms for your organization. Thanks to the backlight, you can easily read the time form 29 time zones and 48 cities, while it is also shock resistant.

Pros:

  • Excellent value and quality
  • Very affordable watch
  • It has the LED light
  • Durable and rugged
  • 29 time zones
  • Preset calendar updated until 2099

Cons:

  • Digital time is relatively hard to read during daytime

8. Timex T49612 Expedition Trail Series

Another model that can be considered as the best tactical watch under 100 bucks, the Timex is quite inexpensive and yet, very durable watch. It comes with black and green combination and the functionality of the watch is pretty high. It is designed from resin; it has a round face and rather accurate digital compass. The time is easy to read in any light conditions, while the digital display and quartz movement provide quality.

The acrylic crystal will resist any scratches, breakage, and scuffs, and if you want to swim or dive, it can withstand water up to 660 feet. This watch has the ability to use the geography to set the compass’ declination and it is a fantastic feature for hiking, mountaineering, skiing, and other outdoor activities.

You can switch from English to metric measurements in no time and this Timex also has a 100-hour chronograph. Thanks to its patented Indiglo(R) night light, you can always read time even during the darkest hours. It weighs at 6.1 ounces, which makes it solid and sturdy, but it is not that heavy so it can be used on an everyday basis.

Pros:

  • Great value for the money
  • Easy to read time in any conditions
  • Shock resistant watch
  • The battery life is relatively long
  • Night mode

Cons:

  • The band is not very durable

You may also like:

Affordable Dive Watches of 2017

Top Military Tactical Glasses of 2017

5 Cheap Military Grade Compasses Reviewed

Conclusion

After reading reviews of these eight fantastic watches you probably know which one is the best military watch for the money, so all you need to do is to follow our guidelines and reads thoroughly, and we sure you’ll make an excellent choice.

It is no matter whether you are in military service or not, if you like these kinds of watches, there is no reason why you shouldn’t get one of the best military watches and wear it proudly on your wrist.

Depending on your preferences and budget, there is something for everybody, so if your budget is limited, you can still find the best military watches under 100 dollars, while for the ones with advanced features and high technology, you will have to pay up to several hundreds of dollars. Still, it’s up to you and we hope that this article can be helpful in your decision-making.