I’ve got an older Seamaster (2254) and it wears very differently to a modern Rolex, it’s much thinner and less top heavy. The newer models are relatively more expensive but defiantly a step up in quality. As for the Black Bay (and I’ve said this a few times), in my opinion it’s pretty close to Rolex in all departments (aside from the movement) they wear very similar and really do feel like a quality watch.
All depends what you want? Sounds like you’ve got a very decent budget but do you want a Rolex because it’s a Rolex (nothing wrong with that)? Or do you want a specific complication – chrono? GMT? etc… Or do you want a specific style of watch?
Couple of left field suggestions might be – IWC Aquatimer, Panerai of some description, JLC Master Compressor