What's Wrong with the Casio PRW2500T-7CR Solar Digital Casual Watch?
Why a Casio PRW2500T?
I'm a very keen diver and dive most weekends. When diving its critical to have a really good dive watch as it can be life saving. I'd had a Sanyo Seiki which was actually pretty good but an accidental knock on a rock 100 feet down and that was the end of that.
A good friend who I haven't seen for awhile and who lives in San Francisco happened to phone me at about the same time and as he's a keen diver I asked him for a recommended replacement and he was the one who said go get a PRW2500T-7. So I did.
Here's some of the features before we get stuck into its good and bad points:
- It has an altimeter (up to 32,000 feet, barometer, compass and thermometer from 14 to 140°.
- A duplex LCD layout with both upper and lower panel layout to give you information at a glance on numerical and graph data such as barometric pressure patterns, water resistance at 660 feet meaning that although its being built to be water resistant at 660 feet its actually stronger than that because its being built to resist water rapids for river rafting and trekking.
- It also features tide and moon graphs and data which is great if you're a sea kayaker or fisherman - great stuff for scuba divers too.
- The PRW2500T receives time calibration radio signals up to 6 times a day to make certain the time is deadly accurate. (Best to use this feature at night).
- Its solar powered and has a complete electroluminescent backlight.
- Comes with 5 different daily alarms.
- Hourly time signal.
- World time.
- Countdown timer - from one minute to sixty minutes.
- Battery level indicator.
- Calendar pre programmed until 2099.
- Battery life - 23 months on full charge
- One year waranty
What's wrong with the Casio PRW2500T-7CR?
- The titanium strap is prone to scratching quite easily. Doesn't particularly worry me as I generally just use it for diving but if you were to use it as a dress watch you'd have to be careful.
- Temperature reading can be out when wearing the watch but fine if you're not wearing it.
- Setup is a bit confusing but the manual is great. But use the online pdf - the manual is tiny.
- The alarm buzzer is a little hard to hear.
- The backlight only stays on for 3 seconds - but this might be adjustable. Haven't found a setting in the manual for this yet though.
The big one is the titanium strap scratching. The paint on it just seems very lightweight. If you just wear it as a casual watch it will probably be just fine but if you're using it for sports its definitely going to look fairly second hand quite quickly. You can replace these straps for $70.00. So I guess if you were to resell it you could just replace the strap. Personally though mines a bit of a workhorse so this just doesn't bother me.
Why I like this Casio watch.
The Casio PRW2500T-7CR has been around for a few years now. I've got to say there's not too many around until you get down to the waterfront and since I bought mine I've talked to a lot of watersport people and lots of these guys have one. Especially yauchtees. They love them because for a relatively cheap price they've got an extraordinary amount of ready to go information right on their wrist.
I talked to a guy with a 28 foot catamaran about why he had bought one. His answers:
I needed a watch with these features and the PRW2500T-7CR gave me the lot.
- I needed a watch with a compass for when I wasn't in the cockpit I could keep an eye on where we were heading.
- For weather monitoring I needed a barometer with a history function.
- For navigation I needed tidal prediction.
- A race sequence timer countdown.
- Of course it had to be very weatherproof.
He especially highlighted a nice little function in the countdown where the casio beeps every minute until the last ten seconds. Nice well thought out feature thanks Casio,
One feature that almost caught me out until reading the instruction manual is the radio controlled atomic signal function. I tried to manually calibrate the watch but found that you actually can't. But once you've read the manual you'll find that the atomic signal works best at night and works perfectly. Just let the watch do its own thing.
Its got quite a big face but it needs to have as it can display moon phases, the day of the week, barometer, tide chart, date and time all at once. Incredibly all these features are very clear. Another amazing feature is that at night and I don't know how this works but when you look at it the backlight comes on automatically.
Its hard to criticize the PRW2500T. They do arrive with quite a large link strap and I took it straight down down to get a few links removed as it was way too loose on my wrist. The jeweler did it while I waited and didn't even charge me, but it only took him a few minutes. Probably the only downside is the strap is made of titanium and will scratch quite easily but on the other hand its titanium to give it lightweight and light this whole Casio is even though it's a big watch.
I ran into a guy paying for a ticket in front of me a few weeks ago who was wearing one and asked him what he thought of it and did he use it for sports or something. He said he wasn't involved in any sports but was a gadget guy who just loved playing around with things like the moon phases plus he thought it was just plain cool. His one didn't have a mark on it.
But most people would have bought one because they're involved with hiking or water sports and need one even for safety. Its served me well so far and unless something comes out in the future at a better price I'll be replacing it with another PRW2500T.