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Watch Review

3 Rolex Sports Watches Under 5k

Paul Altieri

Get more bang for your buck

When deciding on a sports watch, it’s hard to beat the appeal of a Rolex. No other brand comes close to matching its longstanding iconic status, popularity, and resale value. It’s simple really; with a Rolex you know what you’re getting off the bat – a superbly crafted watch that is both attractively designed on the outside and meticulously manufactured for precision and reliability on the inside. Not only are the Submariner, Sea-Dweller, and Explorer II some of the most popular Rolex references out there, but the best part is, that these particular models come in at under $5,000.

Black Rolex Watches
Here are three Black Rolex Watches under 5k

Rolex Submariner

Born in 1953, the Rolex Submariner has the distinct honor of being the first diving watch that was waterproof 330 feet. Today of course, the waterproofness of the Sub has tripled to a depth of 1,000 feet and 63 years later it remains as the quintessential diving watch setting the standard for what a luxurious sports watch should be.

Rolex Submariner 16610
The Rolex Submariner series is the first water resistant dive watch.

This particular Submariner ref. 16610, from the late 1980s, features the 40mm stainless steel Oyster case, black unidirectional rotatable diver’s bezel with 60-minute graduations, and matching black dial. For legibility under water, the dial is set with luminescent Mercedes style hands and hour markers. At the core of the 16610 is the Rolex Caliber 3135, a self-winding mechanical movement equipped with the Parachrom hairspring for better endurance to shocks and temperature swings. The Submariner 16610 features a date window at 3 o’clock topped with the Cyclops lens affixed on the scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and is presented on a black Italian leather strap.

Rolex Sea-Dweller

Conceived from a joint collaboration between Rolex and the famous commercial dive company COMEX, the Sea-Dweller was created in 1967 to be able to reach the extreme underwater depths the commercial divers needed to go. The original Sea-Dweller was water resistant to 2000 feet and came equipped with the Rolex patented Helium Escape Valve – its own mini-decompression chamber to avoid bursting from the pressure.

Rolex Sea-Dweller 16600
The Rolex Sea-Dweller came from the submariner line.

This stainless steel Sea-Dweller 16600 from the early 1990s is waterproof to an incredible 4,000 feet thanks to its airtight 40mm Oyster case secured with the Triplock screw-down crown and Helium Escape Valve. Topped with a black diver’s bezel, black dial with luminescent hour-markers and hands, protected by sapphire crystal, and presented on a robust stainless steel Oyster bracelet, the ref. 16600 is well ready for any subaquatic adventure.

Rolex Explorer II

Because of the very practical functions of Explorer II, this Rolex tool watch quickly became the go-to timepiece for those who spend their time exploring the farthest corners of the earth. First unveiled in 1971, the Explorer II collection has benefited from some improvements and enhancements over the years, yet it still remains true to the original.

Rolex Explorer II 16570
Rolex Explorer II 16570 is the perfect watch if you’re an outdoors type of person.

The Explorer II 16570 from the mid-90s sports a 40mm stainless steel Oyster case and black dial with luminescent hands and hour-markers. The bright arrow-tipped 24-hour hand that points to a fixed 24-hour graduated bezel allows wearers to differentiate between night and day when blanketed in darkness, while the 3185 automatic movement keeps the watch precise and reliable.

Paul Altieri