T3's best watch guide: men's chronographs, chronometers, and stylish dress watches from the best watch brands

From Audemars to Zenith, and not an Apple Watch in sight

With only the best watch brands in existence, this is T3's round-up of the best men's watches to buy in 2016. It's not all about Rolex and Tag -- there's a host of top pieces for any budget right here.

One in seven Britons might be replacing watches with new technology, such as fancy smartwatches or fitness trackers, but we still believe a quality timepiece is an essential executive accoutrement. Serving two purposes, it makes a statement about your style and standing, and it also tells you what the time is (which is super useful).

So, whether you flex a rugged, tech-heavy chronograph or a classic, slimline timepiece designed to compliment your suits, your choice of watch says a lot about you, which is why we've taken care to pick out the best men's watches including the timepieces that caught our eye at Baselworld.

Before you start, here are a few watch buying tips to keep in mind

- Remember the basic rules. Black leather strap for formal wear, metal strap with a black face for the office, and a chronograph for weekend escapades.

- Much like shorts with suits, oversized hats and the Hoxton fin, these things all have a shelf life. That's okay if you're thinking budget, but if you're splashing the cash it's best to stay classic.

- Need more help and guidance buying a new watch? Head over to T3's watch buying guide

1. Victorinox INOX Paracord

Put together by the same industrious Swiss tinkerers who make those little red army knives, you'd be right to expect some engineering creativity in the Victorinox INOX watch. As if a steel shell and hardened sapphire crystal face didn't make it out-doorsy enough for you, the INOX also features a paracord strap, which you can unravel and voila! You've got some potentially life-saving rope. Victorinox will also replace you strap for free if you tell them how it saved you.

Price: £380 | Victorinox watches| Get it from Watch Shop

2. Tag Heuer Carrera Calibre Heuer 01

The classic Tag timepiece, the Tag Heuer Carrera was created in 1964 as a tribute to the Carrera Panamerica, or "Mexican Road Race" of the fifties, at which the day's most balls-out drivers raced 2000 miles across Mexico at full speed. Today's Carrera Calibre Heuer 01 is made from titanium carbide coated steel, and is completed by a strap made from black rubber for a stylish, sporty look.

Price: £4000 |Tag Heuer watches| Get it from Beaverbrooks

3. Hermés Clipper Chronograph

This attractive chronograph from Hermés really stands out with its grade 2 titanium case and orange rubber strap. Despite being from a fashion house, the watch still features a self-winding mechanical movement with a 46-hour power reserve.

Price: £4,800 | Hermes watches

4. Swatch Sistem51

No best watch list would be complete without Swatch, the budget Swiss brand (who also happen to make some pretty snazzy designs). We love the Swatch Originals range -- made from plastic and silicon but featuring quartz movement and waterproof to 3 Bars, but we've gone for the Sistem51, which is a bit more techy.

In fact, the Sistem51 is a technological wonder, featuring 51 parts, one screw, and a 90-hour power reserve.

Price: £108 |Buy from Swatch watches

5. Tudor Heritage Black Bay Bronze

Bronze timepieces are all the rage in 2016, and the best example is from Tudor. Made from a high-performance aluminium bronze alloy, over time the casing will develop a unique patina. The Black Bay features an in-house movement and numerous classic design cues.

Of course, if you're not sold on the Bronze, other more understated colours are available.

Price: £2730 | Tudor watches

6. Rolex GMT-Master II

Before Omega started looking into sending watches into space, the bods at Rolex had a more humble goal: to create the first water resistant watch. Invented in 1926, Brit swimmer Mercedes Gleitze swam the channel in ten hours wearing a Rolex Oyster in 1927, and it's been the darling of big business types and shady internet resellers ever since.

Equally legendary, the GMT-Master II has been a legend of the jet age, embraced by airline pilots as their onboard chronometer of choice.

Price: £19,950 |Rolex watches

7. Tissot T Touch Expert Solar

If you're after a watch which is a bit smarter than a normal watch, but not as smart as an Apple Watch, the T-Touch range from Tissot may be for you.

T-Touch is a technology developed by Tissot that turns the glass into a 'touchscreen', showing different information (such as altitude, digital compass, or timer) depending where you touch. This newest watch in the range, the Expert Solar, uses the Sun's rays to power all of the functions.

Price:£795 |Tissot watches| Get it from the Watch Shop

8. Christopher Ward Trident Pro Titanium

Christopher Ward is looking for a younger audience with its latest range of watches, and we think they've hit the nail on the head with these designs. The durable 43mm case houses a mechanical movement, and for £750 it's quite a bargain.

Price: £750 | Christopher Ward watches

9. Omega Seamaster 300 Spectre

Created to tie in with the 24th Bond film, Spectre, this limited edition Seamaster 300 comes packing some serious style. Featuring a bi-directional rotating bezel, 5-stripe NATO strap, and lollipop second hands, this is a very special timepiece. Limited to just 7,007 pieces (see what they did there) it's also going to be rare, so if you manage to find one, buy one.

If you can't find the Spectre limited edition, there's still the regular version, which is slightly easier to find and equally as stunning:

Price: £4,170 |Omega watches| Get it from Beaverbrooks

10. Hublot Classic Fusion Ultra-thin Skeleton All Black

HWhile Hublot is more famous for its popular Big Bang model, we also love the Classic Fusion range. We recently had the pleasure of reviewing the Classic Fusion Ultra-thin Skeleton All Black and let us tell you - it's something special. With a 90-hour power reserve, this manually wound piece lets you see the inner workings of the HUB1300.4 movement, while the alligator leather and black rubber strap keep the watch secure in place. It's thin (by Hublot standards) at 2.9mm, and features the classic Hublot design traits - such as the H screws.

Price: £12,600 | Hublot watches| Buy it from Harrods

Head over to Page 2 for more of T3's Best Watch Guide... 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Spencer is the youngest member of the T3 team, but what he lacks in experience, he makes up for with enthusiasm. As the Mobile Tech Editor, Spencer covers everything that moves, from smartphones and wearables, to cars and drones.