Top 11 Field Watches for the Modern Adventurer (2023)

Field watches have a rich history and continue to be popular timepieces for those looking for a blend of functionality and style. Originally designed for military use in World War I, these watches were built with soldiers’ specific needs in mind. They needed to be accurate, durable, and easily readable under various conditions. 

One of the key aspects of a field watch is its simplicity. Field watches tend to have minimalistic dials with clear, legible markings, making it easy for the wearer to glance at the time quickly. The utilization of durable materials, such as stainless steel cases and scratch-resistant crystal windows, ensures that these watches can endure the test of time and daily wear and tear. 

While field watches may share similar traits, each timepiece has distinct details that set it apart. Various reputable watch brands offer their interpretation of a field watch, giving consumers multiple options to choose from based on their personal preferences and requirements.

In the market for the best field watch? The guide below offers some quality picks that boast elegance and functionality. Let’s have a closer look.

1. Citizen Chandler Eco-Drive – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. BM8180-03E

Citizen Chandler Eco-Drive ref. BM8180-03E

  • Retail Price: S$268
  • Private Market Price: S$139
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$130

This traditional field watch features Eco-Drive technology powered by light, any light, an impact and shatter-resistant mineral crystal over the dial, Arabic numeral hour markers, a day and date aperture at 3 o’clock, and water resistance to 100m.

  • Production Year: Unknown
  • Case Size: 37mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with skeletonized luminous hands and Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Woven green strap with patterned stitching and a buckle clasp
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, stainless steel
  • Function: Day, Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Eco-Drive Caliber E101 module, meaning it is powered by light, any light, and never requires a battery

This traditional field watch features Eco-Drive technology powered by light, any light, an impact and shatter-resistant mineral crystal over the dial, Arabic numeral hour markers, a day and date aperture at 3 o’clock, and water resistance to 100m.

About

The Citizen Chandler Eco-Drive ref. BM8180-03E is a men’s military-inspired watch from Citizen’s Eco-Drive collection. It has a rugged yet sophisticated design, with Arabic numerals set against a black dial, a 37mm stainless steel case, a mineral glass over the dial, and a green woven strap with patterned stitching. At its heart is an Eco-Drive module, which makes it an ideal ‘set it and forget it’ type of timepiece as long as you expose it to frequent light for recharging.


2. Benrus Heritage – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. F1-BK-BK-NC

Benrus Heritage ref. F1-BK-BK-NC

  • Retail Price: S$1,173
  • Private Market Price: S$995
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$1,010

The main ones are a 41mm stainless steel case, 24-hour indications under the main hour indicators, a screw-down crown, 100m water resistance, Miyota 9015 automatic movement, and a display case back.

  • Production Year: Unknown
  • Case Size: 41mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with luminescent black hands and brown Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Camo NATO nylon strap with tang clasp
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, stainless steel
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Miyota 9015 automatic movement

Its quality craftsmanship, materials, and versatile design make it an ideal timepiece for casual and professional settings. Additionally, the reputation of the Benrus brand further increases its potential for long-term value and appreciation.

About

The Benrus Heritage ref. F1-BK-BK-NC is a quality-built men’s field watch from Benrus’ Heritage collection. It has a larger well-polished 41mm case than its predecessors, amplified by its thicker build and steel screw-down crown. Its military-inspired background is also evident from its unique strap. It showcases Benrus’ dedication to creating timepieces built for everyday use with its focus on durability and performance.


3. Rolex Explorer – Oystersteel, Black Dial ref. 214270

Rolex Explorer Ref. 214270

  • Retail Price: S$8,779
  • Private Market Price: S$11,271
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$11,937

The main ones are Arabic numeral 3, 6, and 9 o’clock hour markers, Chromalight lume on its hands and hour markers, an Oystersteel case and stainless steel bracelet, a COSC-certified automatic movement, and water resistance to 100m.

  • Production Year: 2010-2021
  • Case Size: 39mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with 3,6, and 9 Arabic/ index numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Oyster, Oystersteel, with solid links and an Oysterclasp with an Easylink extension system that allows wearers to adjust the bracelet by 5mm
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, Oystersteel
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: In-house Rolex Caliber 3132, a self-winding mechanical movement with a 48-hour power reserve

Investing in the Rolex Explorer 214270 is wise for several reasons: First, It’s a classic timepiece with a rich history, known for its iconic design and association with explorers and adventurers.

Second, its model often exceeds supply, leading to increased value in the secondary market.

Third, Rolex watches generally retain their value well and can be considered a reliable investment. They can even appreciate in worth if serviced regularly and sold in mint condition.

Lastly, its durable materials and well-respected movement make it a reliable watch that can withstand the test of time. It can last for up to 50 years or more if taken care of properly.

About

The Rolex Explorer ref. 214270 is a legendary sports timepiece designed for those with an adventurous spirit (it’s in the name). It’s the largest Explorer ever made, measuring a whopping 39mm- an improvement from the previous model’s 36mm. It has a masculine black dial and a durable case crafted from 904L stainless steel (Oystersteel today). The consistency continues in its stylish steel bracelet that’s super comfy around the wrist.


4. Breitling Navitimer 8 Automatic 41 – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. M17314101.B1X1

Breitling Navitimer 8 Automatic ref. M17314101.B1X1

  • Retail Price: S$5,227
  • Private Market Price: S$3,425
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$3,444

The main ones are a black stainless steel case with beveled corners, a date window at 6 o’clock, Arabic numeral minute indicators after every five minutes, an index hour indicator at 6 o’clock, a bi-directional rotatable bezel, and water resistance up to 100m.

  • Production Year: 2018
  • Case Size: 41mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with lume-applied hands and Arabic/index hour markers
    • Bracelet: Black calfskin leather strap with white stitchings and a tang clasp
    • Bezel: Bi-directional rotatable, stainless steel
  • Function:
  • Mechanism: Breitling COSC-certified self-winding mechanical Caliber 17 movement with 25 jewels, a 40-hour power storage, and a 28,800vph frequency

Investing in a Breitling Navitimer 8 Automatic 41 is an excellent choice for watch enthusiasts and collectors. It combines the historic appeal of the Navitimer line with a contemporary design, making it a versatile and stylish timepiece. Additionally, Breitling’s reputation for quality and precision ensures that this watch will maintain its value over time.

About

The Breitling Navitimer 8 Automatic 41 ref. M17314101.B1X1 is a sophisticated field timepiece that draws inspiration from the luxury company’s pilot watches of the 1930s and 1940s. It features a sleek design, with a black 41mm stainless steel case, a legible black dial with white details, and a black leather strap that completes its look excellently. Its thick case makes it more of an everyday watch than a formal one.


5. Tudor Heritage Ranger 41 – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. M79910-0013

Tudor Heritage Ranger 41 ref. M79910-0013

  • Retail Price: S$3,487
  • Private Market Price: S$2,748
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$3,165

Its main features are water resistance to 150m, a stainless steel case with tapered lugs, a domed sapphire crystal over the dial, heavily-painted hands and index hour markers for extra visibility, Arabic numerals in 3,6,9, and 12 positions, and a red seconds hand.

  • Production Year: 2014
  • Case Size: 41mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with luminous silver-tone hands and Arabic number/index hour markers
    • Bracelet: Brown leather strap with a foldover clasp with a push button release
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, stainless steel with a polished chamfer
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Automatic ETA Caliber 2824 movement with 25 jewels, a 38-hour power reserve, and 28,800vph frequency

Investing in the Tudor Heritage Ranger 41 ref. M79910-0013 is a great choice for watch enthusiasts who appreciate a stylish and versatile timepiece. Its blend of vintage design elements and modern technology creates a unique and timeless aesthetic, making it a valuable add to any timepiece collection.

About

The Tudor Ranger 41 ref. M79910-0013 is an elegant and versatile men’s field timepiece from Tudor’s now-discontinued Ranger collection. It’s inspired by the classic Ranger model from the 1960s and offers a contemporary twist on a timeless design with its dramatically tapered lugs, super thin 41mm case, and breathable leather strap.


6. Alpina Startimer Pilot Heritage – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. AL-525BBG4SH6

Alpina Startimer Pilot Heritage ref. AL-525BBG4SH6

  • Retail Price: S$2,088
  • Private Market Price: S$1,875
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$1,965

They include a seconds hand with a red triangle counterweight, the Alpina logo at 12 o’clock, a stainless steel 3-part case, a convex sapphire crystal over the dial, and water resistance to 30m.

  • Production Year: 2020
  • Case Size: 44mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with SuperLumiNova lume-applied silver-tone hands and applied silver index hour markers
    • Bracelet: Dark brown calf leather strap with off-white stitching
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, stainless steel
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: AL-525 automatic Caliber movement with 26 jewels and a 38-hour power reserve

Investing in it is wise for those seeking an affordable, elegant, and reliable timepiece from a reputable Swiss watch manufacturer. It’s a limited edition watch (limited to 1,883 pieces globally), making it desirable among most watch collectors and enthusiasts. Moreover, its price rose by at least 3 percent between 2022 and June 18, 2023.

About

The Alpina Startimer Pilot Heritage ref. AL-525BBG4SH6 is a limited edition vintage-inspired men’s field watch from Alpina’s Startimer collection. It borrows heavily from the luxury brand’s 1930s vintage military watches, evident from its slender steel case and stylish dial. It offers an exciting array of modern features in addition to the traditional ones, making it a reliable companion with a timeless edge.


7. Luminox Atacama Field Day Date – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. XL.1925

Luminox Atacama Field Day Date ref. XL.1925

  • Retail Price: S$826
  • Private Market Price: S$496
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$671

The main ones are a black ion-plated stainless steel case, a screw-down crown for added water resistance, water resistance to 200m, Tritium tubes for continuous illumination, a day display at 9 o’clock, and a date display at 3 o’clock.

  • Production Year: 2022
  • Case Size: 45mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with lume-filled hands and Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Brown genuine leather strap with a black buckle clasp
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, black ion-plated stainless steel
  • Function: Day, Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Quartz movement

Investing in the Luminox Atacama Field Day Date ref. XL.1925 is a great choice for watch enthusiasts and collectors. The watch’s renowned durability, water resistance, and continuous illumination make it a reliable and practical timepiece. 

Its versatile design and the brand’s reputation for quality make it a sought-after watch in the retail and pre-owned markets. Plus, its average market price increased from S$457 on December 21, 2022, to S$496 on June 18, 2023, according to WatchCharts.

About

Looking for a bold watch with a no-nonsense design and a likable personality? The Luminox Atacama Field Day Date ref. XL.1925 is part of the Atacama Field Collection, known for its rugged, reliable, and iconic design. This classic field watch is a perfect everyday timepiece, boasting a robust 45mm case, a well-lit dial, a comfortable wrist presence, and an impressive water resistance rating.


8. Omega Seamaster Railmaster – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. 220.10.40.20.01.001

Omega Seamaster Railmaster ref. 220.10.40.20.01.001

  • Retail Price: S$6,973
  • Private Market Price: S$4,038
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$4,087

Some of its standout features include a steel case with a wave-edge design at the back, a vertically brushed black dial, a caseback with a NAIAD LOCK design, a movement that can withstand magnetism of 15,000 gauss, and water resistance to 150m.

  • Production Year: 2017
  • Case Size: 40mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, vertically brushed, with ‘vintage’ SuperLumiNova-filled steel hands and recessed inverted triangle/Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Brushed and integrated stainless steel with a butterfly clasp
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, stainless steel
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Self-winding Co-Axial Master Chronometer automatic Caliber 8806 movement with a 55-hour power reserve and 25,200vph frequency

Investing in an Omega Seamaster Railmaster is a wise choice because of its timeless design and performance features. The watch is stylish, and its durability and precision make it a valuable piece for any collection. Additionally, the prestige associated with the Omega brand helps maintain the watch’s value over time.

About

The Omega Seamaster Railmaster ref. 220.10.40.20.01.001 is a classic Swiss-made men’s field watch that’s part of Omega’s Seamaster collection (the Railmaster is within the Seamaster). 

It’s modeled after the first 1957 Railmaster watch, the ref. CK2914. It combines style and performance with its 40mm symmetrical steel case and black dial with lume-applied hands and hour markers. It may have an awkward name, but it makes up for it with its versatile personality and vintage charm.


9. IWC Schaffhausen Pilot’s Spitfire – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. IW326803

IWC Schaffhausen Pilot’s Spitfire ref. IW326803

  • Retail Price: S$6,571
  • Private Market Price: S$5,170
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$5,560

The main ones are a round stainless steel case with a brushed finish, a triangle with two dots at 12 o’clock (useful for giving pilots orientation), water resistance to 60m, a soft iron inner case for protection against magnetic fields, a date function displayed at 3 o’clock position, and a convex sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating on both sides.

  • Production Year: 2019
  • Case Size: 39mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black with luminescent hands and Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Brown calfskin strap with stainless steel buckle
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, brushed stainless steel
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Automatic, IWC-manufactured Caliber 32110 movement with 164 parts, 21 jewels, a 72-hour power reserve, and 28,800vph frequency

The legendary Spitfire aircraft inspires the watch’s design, making it a unique and memorable piece. Additionally, this timepiece features IWC’s in-house movement from the 32000 caliber family, ensuring its precision and reliability. 

Finally, the Pilot’s Spitfire is part of a prestigious and well-respected brand, contributing to its overall value and desirability in the market. As per WatchCharts, this model’s average market price increased from S$4,982 on December 21, 2022, to S$5,170 on June 18, 2023.

About

The IWC Schaffhausen Pilot’s Spitfire ref. IW326803 is a sleek and stylish watch designed with aviation enthusiasts in mind. It’s part of the Automatic Spitfire aviation line (the collection is named after the propeller plane Spitfire!) and takes inspiration from the colors of the iconic Spitfire aircraft’s cockpit, featuring a 39mm stainless steel case with a sporty 10.8mm height, black dial, and brown calfskin strap.


10. Bulova Hack Watch – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. 98A255

Bulova Hack Watch ref. 98A255

  • Retail Price: S$570
  • Private Market Price: S$284
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$315

The main ones are a domed mineral crystal above the dial, a three-hand 21-jewel automatic movement, a green NATO strap, water resistance to 30m, and a red center track displaying 24-hour time.

  • Production Year: 2021
  • Case Size: 38mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black with luminescent Cathedral-style hands and Arabic numeral hour markers and red center track
    • Bracelet: Green NATO leather strap with pin buckle
    • Bezel: Fixed, smooth, tapered stainless steel
  • Function: Hours, Minutes, Seconds, 24-Hour Time Display
  • Mechanism: 21-jewel automatic Miyota Caliber 82S0 movement with a 42-hour power reserve

Investing in a Bulova Hack Watch ref. 98A255 can be beneficial due to its military-inspired design and historical significance. Its features and build quality cater to watch enthusiasts and those who appreciate vintage watches. What’s more, its average market price increased from S$233 on December 21, 2022, to S$284 on June 18, 2023, according to WatchCharts.

About

The Bulova Hack Watch ref. 98A255 is a modern interpretation of field watches, drawing inspiration from Bulova’s military heritage and the timepieces they supplied to the US Army during WWII. 

It echoes its rightful position in the modern world with its 38mm PVD-coated stainless steel case, a tapered bezel that adds some class to its overall look, and a scratch-resistant domed mineral crystal sitting above the dial- providing a clearer view of the intricate time detailing below.


11. Victorinox Swiss Army Heritage – Stainless Steel, Black Dial ref. 241963

Victorinox Swiss Army Heritage ref. 241963

  • Retail Price: S$436
  • Private Market Price: S$215
  • Pre-Owned Price: S$400

They include an analog quartz movement, water resistance to 100m, an anti-reflective sapphire crystal over the dial, Super-LumiNova lume on hands and hour markers, and the Victorinox logo at 12 o’clock as an hour marker.

  • Production Year: 2021
  • Case Size: 40mm
  • Materials
    • Dial: Black, with SuperLumiNova lume-applied hands and Arabic numeral hour markers
    • Bracelet: Black leather strap with white stitchings and a steel pin buckle clasp
    • Bezel: Fixed, Smooth, Stainless Steel
  • Function: Date, Hours, Minutes, Seconds
  • Mechanism: Analog quartz movement

The watch combines vintage styling with modern technology, ensuring durability and precision. Additionally, the Victorinox brand has a strong reputation for quality, and the 5-year warranty offered for this timepiece showcases their commitment to supporting their customers’ lifestyles.

About

The Victorinox Swiss Army Heritage ref. 241963 is a classic and straightforward 3-handed field watch that embodies a versatile, military-inspired look, paying tribute to the Swiss Army’s long-standing tradition of producing reliable timepieces. 

It has a well-brushed 40mm stainless steel case (that feels big and heavy on most wrists) with lugs that conform to the wearer’s wrist, a black dial that offers an excellent backdrop for easy time-telling, and a stylish black strap with white stitchings that complements the neat face and its white details.


Summary

The following table highlights the models above, plus their key features, retail, private market, and pre-owned prices:

Model 

Launch Price

Current Retail Price

Pre-Owned Price

Cartier Ballon Bleu Ref. W3BB0009

S$14,800

S$7,911

S$9,024

Cartier Panthere de Cartier Ref. W2PN0007

S$11,600

S$9,282

S$10,700 – S$13,800

Cartier Pasha Ref. W3140001

S$9,562.38

S$7,920.07

S$3,404.07

Cartier Tank Francaise Ref. W4TA0008

S$10,300

S$6,794

S$7,462

Cartier Clé de Cartier Ref. WA501010

S$22,491.99

S$12,404

S$13,810

Cartier Ballon Bleu Ref. WJBB0010

S$15,366.29

S$13,013

S$14,830

Cartier Panthere 18K Rose Gold Ref. WJPN0020

S$37,900

S$28,487

S$30,494

Final Word

Field watches are known for their durability, reliability, and timeless designs. They’ve earned their reputation as trusted timepieces for outdoor enthusiasts, military personnel, and adventurers. Their emphasis on functionality and simplicity has made them a popular choice for those seeking a reliable watch that can withstand harsh environments and conditions.

Key Takeaways

  • Field watches are a unique and versatile timepiece category that combines style with functionality. Originally designed for military purposes, these military watches have become popular among men and women due to their timeless design, durability, and accuracy.
  • The main characteristics of field watches include minimalistic dials, stainless steel cases, and glare-proof crystals. These features make the watches easy to read and suitable for various environments and activities.
  • Luxury field watches are worth investing in for their rich historical background, high-quality materials, attractive military-inspired designs, and ability to retain value with time (and appreciate in worth if maintained properly).

Looking to buy or sell your luxury watches? Watch Book is your one-stop destination for trading Rolex, Patek Philippe, Tissot, Sinn, Zenith, and other luxury timepieces. Find your next watch today or list your item for free!

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