Casio Pathfinder Watch Review: Sea, Compass, Titanium, Solar
Casio Pathfinder collection offers what can be without exaggeration be labeled as the ultimate selection of outdoors oriented watches. Intended audience of the Pathfinder includes athletes, extreme sports persons, but also travelers – hikers, campers, fishermen and generally folks who spend most of their time in nature either to have fun or make a living (or both).
As befits a universal traveler's watch, this one shows meticulous planning and design. The number of functions is unusually high – but they are mostly focused on measuring and assessing weather conditions; the protective resin is still there – but not in such abundance as G-Shock, where the case coating will overprotect the timer's “life” just in case. In other words, Pathfinder watches better suit a careful, long term approach rather than the aggressive and immediate attack of the G-Shock. It's not surprising that the collection includes several timepieces designed especially for women.
Another thing that comes with no surprise is the technology/utility baggage: besides the almost standard atomic and tough solar movements and various sensors, most watches also resist water and contain titanium.
Pathfinder features three sensors: altimeter, which takes note of differences in height, barometer, which measures barometric pressure, and thermometer, which measure temperature. Here are some more detailed specs (from the official website)
Altimeter “checks and display the altitude every two minutes.” Range is between -700 and 10,000 meters, while data is recorded in units of five meters. The watch can store up to 40 sets of data (including temperature and exact date).
Barometer makes readings every two hours, and provides a range between 260 and 1,100 millibars (or hecto-Pascals). The results are than displayed graphically on the LCD dial.
Thermometer requires the watch to be taken off and placed on a “ventilated location.” The sensor reads data between -10 and 60 degrees Celsius (14 to 140 Fahrenheit) – which might be too limited (especially on the low end) for the northern hemisphere.
PAW1500 series combine the above described utilities with atomic clock calibrating and tough solar power system. The resulting watch is quite large, but Casio offer a specialized elastic band to compensate for the size: it enables the wearer to wrap the watch around his or her winter clothes. This also eliminates the need to remove the timer to measure temperature, as body heat effects are canceled by this wearing method.
A marine watch that's also an effective diving timer, Sea Pathfinder contains a wholly different set of functions: dive timer that reads water pressure and temperature, depth gauge and memory, a “Surface Interval Measurement Function,” and other features. Another of Casio's alternatives to the specialized Waveceptor.