Watches are an essential item, especially in the military. They not only help update the time but also a tool to calculate the direction accurately and time to make the success of an entire campaign.
Besides a well-groomed appearance, military wristwatches also possess incredible accuracy and durability. It is not difficult to understand when it is always “hunted” by professional witch hunters.
In this article, I will introduce you to the essential features of military watches and the TOP 12 hottest products today for you to better understand!
Please keep reading for more details about the best choices of best tactical watches.
The Best Choices – Top 12 Best Tactical Watches For Money
1. SUUNTO Core All Black Military Men’s Outdoor Sports Watch
Suunto is a brand launched in Finland more than 80 years ago, Suunto is a leader in high-end sports watches and devices with outstanding smart features.
The price of the product is not too high compared to other brands, but the number of functions in it is plentiful for the best service for training and exploration. If you choose watches for professional sports, Suunto watches are a very suitable choice.
I cannot deny that it meets all the requirements for my climb. I just need three things: record my movement, notify about the weather, and show me the path.
All in one, with altimeter, this helps me to track your vertical movement. Besides, the barometer provides information about air pressure.
The thing I like best is that this is a military watch with a compass. You know, I am not good at finding ways and help me follow the right direction. Getting lost is terrible.
About the design, I totally like this.
All thing was great except for the battery. The battery does not really make me satisfied because I have to use it most of my traveling time and have to change it quite regularly.
- Reasonable price
- Great look and fit
- Compass, storm alarm, and other things are accurate.
- Multifunctional is suitable for trekking and climbing.
- Two-year warranty
- Low battery.
In conclusion, I think for a real trekker or climber, it is a must-have item. It seems to be one of the best army watches for men. However, you need to check its battery carefully before you start a journey.
2. Timex Men’s Expedition Field Chronograph Watch
The thing that impresses me, at first sight, was its appearance. I really enjoy the youthful sports style and dynamic look of this watch. The design is not only sporty but also very elegant, suitable for different styles.
The watch attracts fashionistas through the simple design in every small detail but still does not lose the elegance, nobility, purity.
Anyone who desires to own a best military-style watch can’t skip this product. With the most outstanding feature of the leather strap, this watch brings a feeling of comfortable to wear, durable stainless steel case, easy to mix with fashionable clothes.
Besides, I often hang out with my friends. Sometimes we go swimming in local pools or beaches. I don’t have to take it off. That’s really a plus point for this product.
However, remember not to press the button when you are underwater or when the watch is wet. It can stop working. Be careful!
Still, mistakes happen even to the best of us, and this watch is not an exception. Sometimes, I get some trouble with the chronograph, which is (slightly) misaligned.
- Appealing appearance, style
- Water Resistant, suitable for daily swimming
- Luminous, easy to watch
- Chronograph work ineffectively in some cases.
To be honest, this is the best men’s tactical watches. They have all features you’d expect to enjoy any events in your daily life, from playing tennis court or even go swimming to attending a grand opening of a luxurious brand.
3. G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400 Watch
Are you an adventure enthusiast? If your answer is “Yes,” you should consider this watch – G-Shock Rangeman GW-9400. This rugged tactical watch is a perfect companion for the whole trip.
The monotony in design colors does not mean that the quality is low. Instead, this watch has equipped with a series of high-quality materials to help increase durability, impact resistance, and scratch resistance.
When I saw it for the first time, I don’t pay much attention to this watch until I read all information and amazing functions of this product. At that time, I just think, “It will best tactical automatic watch for my trip to explore the tropical forest” And then, it really was, even more than my expectancy.
Especially with the solar system – Light energy has helped to enjoy high time frames and the criteria of no need to replace the battery.
With other watches, I always have a big concern for the battery. And when I found this solar military watches, I can fully appreciate this.
The only feature that I don’t like is the digital display. After using it for a long time, large numbers in the bottom window have faded sometimes. I guess I have used it for swimming too much.
- Multifunctions: Mineral glass, shock resistance, and so on.
- World time
- High water resistance
- Using solar energy
- Each sensor mode has its tone, which means you can determine which mode you’re entering without looking at your watch.
- The digital display may go out and was barely readable.
- Need to charge regularly
G-SHOCK’s is famous for its ruggedness and durability, as well as many other features, make RANGEMAN the perfect choice for anyone with a career or demanding job long-term reliability. Of course, it is the best tactical watch for police, guardians, rescue teams.
4. Garmin Instinct, Rugged Outdoor Watch with GPS
This product will be a small investment that will deliver tremendous advantages for athletes, and people have a health issue but want to play sport.
At first glance, I think this watch is designed for a picnic and daily activities rather than a sports watch.
However, I was quite surprised to see that after testing, Garmin Instinct performed quite well when running, with GPS accurate, especially trail running.
This watch shows the number of steps of the day, parameters, and quality of sleep, average heart rate, etc.
If you connect Bluetooth with your phone, you can also receive notifications of Facebook, messages, appointments on the watch’s interface.
Mainly, I delighted in the benefits when I go swimming. I can count the distance I have paddled. Besides, it also has a default countdown function, instead of just pressing and then pedaling, you can press “Start” and wait for Instinct to count down for 5 seconds.
Garmin Instinct does not measure VO2max, does not notify the training effect nor the lactate threshold.
This is a limitation of this watch for professional runners because it does not detect that your heart is getting better through practice.
But in return, It still allows users to copy existing lesson plans or create their own sports lesson plans to practice especially heart-rate lesson plans.
- Bright screen display under all conditions
- Fully equipped with all sensors. GPS chip is particularly fast and responsive
- Keep track of a lot of information about health
- Useful for playing sports. Excellent support for jogging.
- Good battery.
- Low screen resolution.
- Do not measure VO2 max, Lactate Threshold, and Training Effect.
All In all, it is an everyday carry watch for athletes or just people who enjoy sports.
Long battery and rugged construction allow Instinct to be used even in ultra trail runs. Besides, lightweight (50g), you can still use Instinct to practice swimming in the lake and track speed, cadence when cycling.
5. Casio Men’s Pathfinder Triple Sensor Multi-Function Sport Watch
It is undeniable that this watch is the coolest military watch I have ever know to travel in many extreme conditions.
Regardless of any terrain such as deserts, rainforests, high mountains, or cold places, it still works effectively.
Like other watches, when we mention Triple Sensor, this means that this is a device equipped with three miniature sensors integrated into the watch.
Each sensor has a specific task such as a Pressure sensor for measuring air pressure, a Temperature sensor for measuring the ambient temperature, a Compass sensor senses direction.
I still remember when I climbed on a high mountain, at an altitude of 2,500 meters above sea level, altitude marker stays reading correctly, and although the temperature was low, it still works well.
Solar-powered is one of the significant advantages. When you are in some harsh natural conditions, without any power source, this is really convenient! However, its battery life can last six months on full charge (without further exposure to light).
The strap is quite hard and big. I think so, and I don’t like it very much. Sometimes, It takes time to adjust this product.
- Charging by solar energy
- Suitable for swimming and snorkeling.
- Complicated watch to adjust.
- Reasonable price
Overall, an elegant gadget for hikers and climbers. Wearing this black tactical watch to travel around the world, I must say I am still very pleased with it. Don’t hesitate to pick up one for yourself and enjoy a great experience.
6. Hamilton Men’s HML-H70455533 Khaki Field Black Dial Watch
Is this watch worth purchasing? Of Course, you will not regret this. As you know, this is a very famous tactical automatic watch.
In my opinion, every watch collector should own one at least once in their lifetime. It has a timeless design and will always look good, as is usually the case with designs that made to be functional first.
I have to admit that the lumen is adequate. What I mean by that is that the case is perfectly visible throughout the night. As with the fading of the lumen, your eyes get more sensitive, so you can always read them.
Although the strap is very comfortable, I am not really sure about its durability. As I can see, it got pretty deformed at the hole even though I didn’t wear that much.
In addition, the one thing that works against comfort is the large crown. It does make operating the watch quickly, but to someone get used to a smaller crown, like me, this will feel uncomfortable.
As you would expect from a field watch, it is wholly brushed, and the brushing is excellent, making for a lasting finish that will handle scratches well.
- Beautifully made modern, dressier version of a timeless style where form follows functions
- Easy to read
- Not multiple functions
Now, I am really a sucker for legible watches, and this one really excels at that.
7. Garmin Tactix Charlie, Premium GPS Watch with Tactical Functionality
If you are a soldier and looking for the best military-grade watches, why don’t you try this product?
Charlie integrates with the ability to display full-color map terrain such as Fenix 5X, comes with 16GB of internal memory so you can download additional necessary map information. Products will also own GPS that supports GLONASS.
Besides, it also has other features include a height sensor, pressure sensor, and compass, as well as a night vision mode to see the clock when you’re wearing night-vision goggles.
Another impressive feature of Charlie is the addition of military-specific support features such as compatibility with multiple GPS formats or the ability to track waypoint. I really like this point.
However, with the above outstanding, this watch is marketed at high prices. Nonetheless, “You get what you pay for,” this is one of the best digital watches for the military and will not let you down if you have a chance to use all its functions.
- Download maps
- Night version
- Mostly suitable for the army.
Of course, Garmin Tactix Charlie is not for everyone. If you are not a military or political activist, you probably won’t need this. On the contrary, if you really enjoy an ultra-durable fitness smartwatch and are willing to spend a lot of money, this combat watch is perfectly suitable.
8. Casio G-SHOCK RANGEMAN Watch
When talking about this watch, “Survival” was the first thing that came to my mind. In my opinion, it should be worn by anyone and everyone ventures in the wilderness or unknown territory as this one could really save your life.
Although this watch can be connected and adjusted by phone, it is impossible to meet the features of a smartwatch. You cannot receive notifications when someone calls.
From my view, when I get lost in woods or a jungle or in a dessert, outside of any cell phone coverage. I don’t care about emails or Facebook and other social networking sites.
At that time, the only thing I care about is how to get back, and safety and that is what this watch does.
I have to say that GPS navigation is essential, and I like this. It doesn’t use google maps to operate as it merely draws a line when you’re moving. Besides, I allow me to use the backtracking option and go back following the same path. That’s awesome.
However, the most brilliant part is that when my garments died after being away from power for a few days, this will keep working thanks to its solar energy.
The thing that disappointed me is that although this is an outdoor sport watch, it is not a typical health monitoring device like the Garmin or Suunto. So I can’t connect to know the heart rate and the calories I consume.
But that is not a big deal. Anyway, it is still suitable for a journey of adventure. As for running, cycling, or swimming daily, the features are still sufficient but not too outstanding.
- Multiple functions (include mud resistance and vibration resistance)
- Excellent GPS Navigation
- Solar power
- Big size, heavy-duty watch (142 gr)
This watch is suitable for outdoor enthusiasts, adventure lovers, and adventure lovers. It is a real survival tool.
9. SureFire 2211 WristLight Series Watch
Many people wonder about this product: Is it a great replacement for headlight?
I’m not a big fan of headlights, nor am I someone who keeps the lights outdoors all night. So I really like to wear 2211 when I need a little light. It’s right there on my wrist when I need to click on it for a few seconds; carrying it is much easier than carrying a light in my pocket.
The operation is effortless. I click the highlight button on the top once for high and can move through other levels with a series of quick pushes. It always turns on at a high level, requiring you to quickly push to avoid blindness if 300 lumens is too much for a given task.
In my daily community, I use it when riding at night. It not only illuminates the road, but if my vehicle broke down inside, I can easily see the damage and fix it without having to carry a bulky flashlight.
It’s the only drawback is when fixing my car. It’s still too big to get inside. That’s a little pity! I hope it can be smaller.
- Very bright and very popular, perfect for shining light into enclosed areas at night.
- A prominent border around the on / off button prevents accidental activation.
- Lifetime quality.
- Not dim enough for close-up night work.
- Not really nice
I really like this gear watch as an outdoor light, and it’s actually easier to carry than a handheld device. It will not work as well as headlights if you need continuous lighting to run or cycle, but otherwise, a great alternative.
10. Men’s Casio G-Shock Analog-Digital Watch
With an eye-catching design and one of the best tough watch, you definitely should not leave this watch. If you’re a fan of the watch, this product perfectly fulfills your desires with the flexibility to change beautiful bands.
What makes me surprise is the easily replaceable straps. In the box provided, I have received three different straps. I can choose the strap I want for each event and make it easier to mix and match with my clothes.
A unique feature is the carbon fibers that have applied to put directly into the internal apparatus to increase durability and impact resistance.
In the unfortunate circumstances such as falling from a high level, being rolled over, etc. I can completely rest assured.
At night, super illuminators illuminate the face and digital display so that I can see easily.
However, there are no sensors here, so the function is not too diverse. With this price segment, it is entirely reasonable and acceptable.
If you are a person who plays hard or extreme sports, it is really the right choice. I highly recommend this Casio field watch.
- Extreme durability
- Easy to use
- Reasonable price
- Not multiple functions
Do you like its “desert camouflage” color? Get one and experience by yourself. It deserves to rank in the top 10 of the best watches for the military.
11. Aqua Force Firefighters Logo 47mm Diameter Quartz Watch
Not too many unique points for this watch because it only costs about $ 20. How cheap tactical watch it is. It should be on top of the best tactical watches under 100.
So why is it worth buying? Everything has its reasons.
It is considered one of the best buys for firefighters because of its unique features with stainless steel back and polyurethane band.
I am quite impressed with the material of this watch. Besides, its structure can withstand water up to nearly 50m. That is enough for me to be able to swim freely.
Also, it is quite suitable for teenagers. I think so. I find guys love this product because its characteristics perfectly suit the dynamic of young people. They love to play in the water, explore, and simply need a watch that can withstand their constant movement.
The minus point for this product is that the functions are too few; only hours can be viewed. When underwater, the numbers on the dials of the watch are also difficult to read. Hopefully, this watch will have a better version.
- Water Resistance
- Hard to read underwater
- Not multiple functions
Anyway, I would like to emphasize that its material can withstand the harsh conditions and is suitable for firefighter work—worth the money to me.
12. Luminox XS.3053 Series Watch for Men
The most outstanding features are water resistance so that I can use it for my picnic, go swimming, go camping, and even my daily life.
On some scuba diving trips, it was quite helpful and helped me to enjoy the underwater experience comfortably.
I like the overall design of the strap, and the Luminox logo embossed on it. The strap it comes on is a silicone rubber, which is very soft and adds to the comfort. The buckle is massive and gives a feeling of being indestructible.
Besides, I feel that s it is super durable, and the fact that it glows at night is beneficial. I especially love how the tritium vials give the hands a 3d look.
The bezel, on the other hand, doesn’t give me that feeling. It just feels and sounds so weird to turn it that I have a feeling I am braking something inside every time I use it.
- Good design
- High- qualified water resistance
- Very comfortable strap
- Tough to see the numbers in low light
To conclude, despite my love for the design of this tactical dive watch and the cool factor of the tritium lumen, when I use bezel action, I don’t like its sound.
What are tactical watches, and who is this for?
Military watches, or tactical watches, we can simply understand that watches are designed for the military.
The object initially targeted by military watches is combat soldiers. Therefore, these watches are designed very specifically, dedicated to helping soldiers not only to manage time but also as a tool for soldiers to navigate to determine the success of the campaign.
Some of the more special watches used by pilots, divers, or submarines also can display other particular parameters such as altitude, humidity, speed, etc.
The development of modern technology devices is increasingly bridging the gap between “military” watches and “sport” watches or “tool” watches.
As long as the watch is durable, convenient, easy to use, it can be called a military watch and is chosen by the military, not necessarily according to “military” standards.
How to use a tactical watch?
Most tactical watches look quite complicated. So how can we use it?
Depending on the type of military watch, each watch has different uses. In general, military watches are quite easy to use. For many watches with a variety of combined functions, its use will be a bit more complicated, especially in the initial process.
Don’t worry. You can refer to the following steps to make it easier to use:
- First: carefully read the features provided by the watch to ensure that you do not overlook any benefits from it.
- Then, set the time, location, and necessary information that the watch can display.
- Check out the features that you can see, such as flashlights, water resistance, luminous features, etc. to make sure they work.
- Then slowly proceed to test more complex skills.
- For watches used in extremely harsh environments, make sure you can utilize the support functions so you can cope with the situation in time.
I hope the above notes are useful for you. If there is a problem during use, you can take it to the manufacturer for warranty and repair, depending on the extent of the damage.
Types of tactical watches
Below are the lists of different types of tactical watches that may give you more information when picking up the most suitable one for you. Let’ find out!
1. Pilot’s Watches
It is not too difficult to guess that the original one manufactured for the Pilot. The first one appeared during WWII. Their most outstanding feature is its large surface.
Compared to the past with neat and straightforward design, Pilot’s watches are upgraded to catch up with the modern trend. They look more luxurious, stylish as well as still keeping the futures such as the ability to notify the time of two time zones (GMT) and people can manipulate when wearing gloves,…
2. General-purpose watches (field watch)
The purpose of general-purpose watches was born to use in the military, especially during combat. Marathon is the biggest brand producing this type of watch.
MIL-PRF-46374G is the strict military standard that this watch is base on to develop comprehensively to use in the field.
Notably, a high-impact fiber shell is a material creating the field watch’s case. This feature can be a plus of this type because the quality and durability can be maintained in a tough situation while keeping the weight low.
3. Dive watch
Dive watches are one of the high-end wristwatches for people who often swim or dive with high water resistance (usually more extensive than 200m or 100m if ISO 6425 waterproof standard is applied).
Some basic characteristics:
- Adjust the bezel rotation on the case
- Sapphire glass on the dive watch
- Thick crust with optimum water resistance
- One-way exhaust valve helps helium gas escape when diving deeply, protecting diving watches.
- Most diving watch models usually equipped with a strap from materials such as rubber, silicone wire, polyurethane or fabric, stainless steel, titanium, or a mesh strap of a suitable length to facilitate the wearing of the watch on a diving suit.
4. Digital tactical watches
This watch is suitable for many uses. They are trendy, useful, and convenient for anyone who enjoys playing sports, adventure games, or particular jobs in the military.
The GPS feature is the most outstanding. Besides, it also has additional features such as waterproof, scratch-resistant, withstands excellent pressure, and notification features such as temperature, humidity.
Why do you need tactical watches?
Consider buying a military watch for the following reasons:
- It performs a complicated as well as an advanced, sophisticated feature: water resistance, mud resistance, GPS navigation, moving track, countdown, Bluetooth connection, and so on.
- It can be used in specific jobs such as firefighters, police officers, especially in harsh military environments.
- It is also a companion for those who love sports because some watches allow you to measure your heart rate, change calories during exercise, and even allow us to create an exercise plan.
- If you are an adventurous and adventurous person, it provides and can follow the change of time zone based on points, weather forecasts, especially with an integrated compass to detect directions. This helps you be safe even in survival situations.
- The appealing design and changeable strap to help you more energetic, dynamic, flexible, and also become a genuine fashionista.
For any reasons above, you should choose one and enjoy it!
Factors To choose the right tactical watches
The military watches must have distinctive designs. They must meet specific standards to work alongside the soldiers.
1. Clear watch face
Tactical watch designs must meet clear dial standards. These products must have a large dial diameter, usually 40mm or more. The astronomical watch face makes it easy and quick for the soldier to determine the time. Besides, the large dial also shows more unique features of the watch in precise detail.
Not only is the dial size large, but the dial on the watch also needs to be large and bright. Military watch designs must have a large 1 to 12-hour Latin dial.
2. Support reading in the night
The characteristics of a soldier’s job are to work day and night and in various light and dark conditions. Therefore, their watches must have a reading support function in the dark.
There are many ways to help luminescent watches, such as phosphors, LEDs, tritium, etc.
One of the conditions required to become a military watch is durability. For harsh working environments, the product needs to be durable and robust enough. Therefore, the entire watch from the case to the strap is made from the most supple and durable material.
Usually, tactical watches have dials made of mineral glass with high strength. This is a unique material, also known as tempered glass. Only with this type of glass can the watch withstand the harshest environments.
The case and watch band are usually made of stainless steel, titanium, cloth, nylon, or neoprene. These are materials that have excellent durability, withstand a variety of harsh conditions from high heat, water, dirt to high humidity.
4. The apparatus works with high precision
Military watches must always ensure high accuracy. Whether a campaign, a plan succeeds or not depends on when it is crucial. Therefore, their internal machines need to operate stably and persistently with extremely small errors. It also requires less magnetization to maintain accuracy under a variety of conditions.
Typically, tactical watches have been in operation for five years or more. They can be quartz or solar-powered.
5. Other features included
For serving armed activities, a military watch has a lot of features built into it. The most typical are:
- Good water resistance;
- Usually powered by batteries or light energy;
- Bluetooth connection;
- GPS navigation;
- Connecting satellite, radio, etc
- Measure temperature, altitude, depth, etc
What is the best watch for the money?
In my opinion, the best army style watches to purchase as of now is the SUUNTO Core All Black Military Men’s Outdoor Sports Watch.
It has a beautiful design, fully equipped with warning features, suitable for traveling in bad weather or harsh places. In addition, we can use it in daily sports activities. It can still be waterproof, shockproof. This is really a device that you should own.
Remember, not many watches can accurately warn about the big storm like what this product does.
After all, I hope my experience of 12 best tactical watches can help you find a real loyal companion.
Although the products above are the best-quality ones in the market, some of them are the incredible price that fit your budget.
Again, I highly recommend SUUNTO Core All Black Military Men’s Outdoor Sports Watch for best work watches.
With the features above, I find it suitable for both sports and traveling without having to buy two watches that are too specialized for these two purposes.
Having a tactical watch will make you more confident and more convenient in life. It’s a worthwhile investment so don’t hesitate to buy one!