Very Satisfied but Caveat about Tide Function
I am very satisfied with PRW2500T-7CR after looking at a multitude of other watches. First of all, I was looking for a watch that could be used for sailing (both cruising and racing)on my 27' x 19' trimaran. I needed a watch that was stylish enough for everyday use that had the following features:
- Compass for checking heading when away from the cockpit
- Barometer with history function for weather monitoring
- Tide prediction for navigation
- Race sequence countdown timer
- Must be waterproof
- Solar powered
- Atomic clock synchronization
- Moon phase prediction
- Altimeter for when I go hiking on the AT
At night, it has a function that automatically turns the back light when you look at the watch without having to push anything. The PRW2500T-7CR met all of my needs at a reasonable price.
You will need to get the watch sized as it ships with all the titanium segments installed on the band. Went to a local jewelry store where they re-sized while I waited using a special tool and didn't charge me anything.
Here's the caveat with the tides function. The display is designed for semi-diurnal tides, which is when there are two high tides and two low tides per day. If you use the watch in an area that has diurnal tides, which is when there is only one high and one low tide per day, you have to understand that low tide occurs when the display shows the second high tide for the day. The following is a link to where diurnal occur in the US.
No one has commented on the race countdown, so here's some more detail. You can set the sequence to 10 minute, 5 minute, 4 minute, etc... The watch beeps each minute until the last ten seconds. During the last 10 seconds it beeps each second with the tone of the beeps changing between 10,9,8,7,6 and 5,4,3,2,1. 0 is a single tone that stops without having to push anything. It is also nice that it displays the local time during the sequence as well.
One of casio's best
Over the years I have owned a number of Casio watches, and all did everything they were advertised to do. This one disappointed me at first, and I almost returned it. Then I read the instruction manual, and discovered that the atomic signal reception works best at night! I had always taken this feature of atomic watches for granted. I assumed that one could do a manual time calibration anytime. Not so. After making this discovery, I tried to do daytime syncs with a number of atomic watches, and they all struggle to connect with Fort Collins until after dark. Once I understood how this technology works, I found that this Casio too does exactly what it is supposed to do.
This is a large but sturdy watch. It isn't for a small person, but it isn't so bulky that it is unsuitable for most men. I own an older PAW 1500 7T, which is very similar in features and size. I honestly don't see a host of improvements over the older PAW 1500, other than the dual display--which adds a little functionality, but not enough to make this a revolutionary upgrade; both are great watches
An excellent successor to previous Pathfinders; feature rich, minor issues
The Pathfinder PRW2500T-7CR was my personal upgrade to the Casio men's PAW1300T-7V Pathfinder Multi-Band Solar Atomic Silver Watch I purchased about 3 years ago, and I'm very impressed with its performance, though I'll honestly say it's far from perfect - especially for nearly $300 (after taxes).
There's a lot to cover, so let's start with the features and upgrades Casio has made to the PRW2500T to previous watches. This is Casio's latest (2001) edition of their Pathfinder Tough Triple-Sensor Atomic Solar watches - which is a real mouthful. Basically this series of Pathfinder watches really are the Crem della crem of those offered, as they include a tough design to resist damage & wear, includes some form of significant water resistance (20BAR, 200 meters), has a triple sensor (temperature barometer, altimeter, and digital compass), has an atomic timekeeping feature, and is solar powered. In short, this watch is extremely feature rich - but this is nothing new for Casio. The PAW1300T I mentioned earlier came out about four years previously and has the exact same features - save for a weaker water resistance (10BAR / 100 Meters), so Casio is certainly staying the course in offering what its most outgoing and resourceful customers want. What this watch DOES offer as an upgrade significantly is new moon and tide data, which the aforementioned watch did not have - so this is something to consider if this is what you're looking for.
What makes this watch such an effective upgrade is the great display redesign that it has given compared to previous pathfinders. the PRW2500T, from the home screen, allows you to view the moon phase, day of week, barometer graph, tide chart, date, and time without pressing a button! That's a big upgrade, as previous watches required you to trade the day of the week for a barometer graph or other exchanges of information, making it more inconvenient for the quick glance. Of course, as a cost the time display is much smaller, so you'll have to look harder for this view. The watch's physical design has also gotten a serious upgrade, with resin supports around the stainless steel casing to ensure less denting and help maintain a water-resistant seal when possible. The band also connects to the watch face much more securely compared to the PAW1300T, meaning your band won't break as easily (which is why I ended up buying this watch in the first place!) and you're not going to have to replace the band as likely. Long story short, the watch has been built much better compared to the PAW1300T and is a step in the right direction for Casio
The sensors and general timekeeping are solid. Atomic timekeeping is a pain in the butt, and i have to say I've yet to get a solid update unfortunately, but bear in mind this was done in a metropolitan environment on the 4th floor, not a rural one away from buildings where it's mostly expected. Then again this is nothing different from past pathfinder watches, which
The watch has everything you need, and only a few shortfalls. The titanium band - while strong and lightweight - is not very scratch resistant. The paint on the surface (such as on the direction dial) is also very prone to scratches, which really kill the clean and finished look I just loved when I got it. I'm a week in and it's already chipping paint and scratching up, and I've yet to take it on my first hike. Despite this, it's extremely resistant to wear and will last you years - so long as you give it the maintenance it needs every so often and keep it away from harm. It's no G-Shock, but a very good watch, and light on the hand!
The titanium band is a great option that's very classy and resistant to damage - but where the watch face and band meet is connected by metal and plastic/rubber resin - which has in the past broke on my other pathfinders. The new design is much more beefy and resistant to damage, but I still feel Casio has a conspiracy to sell you titanium bands that break and get scratched up, especially when they only offer a 1 year warranty.
Speaking of warranties, this thing - for what you pay - deserves a 3 or 5 year warranty. Casio's 1-year warranty is an insult, and they should really back their watches more long-term. The watch face will probably outlive you - but the watchbands are very likely to break every few years. The titanium band is an easy $70 to replace, so keep that in mind!
In the end there's a lot to be said about this watch - most importantly it will suit your needs no matter your interests, whether they be personal, business, or military. I also feel I've barely scratched the surface with this watch, so please feel free to individually ask questions if you feel this review isn't sufficient of how much this watch covers. This is a watch that will go with and last just about anything you throw at it. I love it, even despite its shortfalls, and think the pathfinder is the most feature-rich watch money can buy.
UPDATE - May 15 2013
Nothing has changed for this watch except some wearing on the compass dial. Apparently the paint can't survive, though everything else is in fair order. I don't get why this feature is even on the watch but nonetheless it does hurt the aesthetics. Bear this in mind as you use it! Regardless it's still a fine product and everything else seems to be working great.
UPDATE - July 2014
Just a short update. I ended up shelving this watch for a bit as I use my smartwatch more often. My only disappointment is that the device doesn't store its charge for as long as my previous Casio (in fact this one is dead while the other Casio is sitting on Low after over a year!) which was a little surprising, but not a deal breaker.
Nonetheless the unit is holding up fantastically even before I switched to a smart watch. I definitely will keep it around for the more outdoor days.
As I was searching for a new watch to purchase, I noticed this Casio watch.
I instantly read the various reviews which impressed me overall with all the functions this watch is able to perform.
Two of the functions I appreciated as soon as I became familiar with how to use were the barometer & thermometer modes.
The barometer is able to read in units of hpa (hectopascals) or inHg (inches of mercury).
The thermometer is able to read in units of Celsius or Fahrenheit.
Before using these two functions make sure to calibrate the two functions to known barometric and temperature values.
Be sure to gather enough data so as to develop the means and standard deviations to apply to the calibrations.
I am sure the functions of altitude and the compass will be equally useful.
Be sure to read all the instructions before using this watch.
In my opinion, the instructions in a pdf manual that Casio's website offers are the mostly easily read.
When reading the instructions, it will become clear that the radio controlled atomic timekeeping is performed between 12 am and 5 am.
Overall I truly enjoy using the functions of this watch which are performing to analytical standards.
Best watch I've ever owned
This is a weather station for your wrist. Barometric Pressure, Altitude, Temperature, Tides, Moon Phase, World Time, Compass, Alarms, Timers, and more. The manual for this solar powered watch is about the size of a business card x 1 inch thick. This watch has a Titanium finish, kind of a greyed silver. The only drawback that I have found is that the metal band scratches fairly easily, but then, I wear my watch a bit looser than most others and so the outside of my wrist (and hense watchband) makes contact with objects like counters, tables, and such, a little more often than normal wrist watch users.
If you are interested in critical timing then this may be the watch for you as it automatically syncs with the Atomic Clock 6 times a day (it can also be manually synced at will) to ensure accurate timekeeping.
Atomic timekeeping, weather station, altimeter, compass, solar powered, with alarms and more, water resistant to 20 Bar (660 feet) - a perfect watch for anyone engaged in outdoor activities like skiing, snowmobiling, hiking, sailing, camping, or whatever else turns you on.
Toughest watch I've owned yet.
Its a big upgrade on the band attachment comparing to its previous models. Been through combat, with little wear and tear on the side, but not a single scratch on the crystal. If you're in the military/law-enforcement, I would recommend this watch. Never worry about the battery or getting beat. Plus the metallic band does not stink over time. Unless you're buying a $500+ high-end Suunto, I would suggest you get this watch.
Perfect In Every Way
Lightweight and durable
Accurate and easy to read (even in the dark with Auto Light feature)
Every feature imaginable
Big and bold
Titanium bracelet is high quality and secure
Update: Watch is so awesome, that I bought the same watch in a rubber strap version.
The functions work extremely well. Watch is perfect in every way. Highly recommend.
The perfect watch.
The perfect watch. Syncs every night, and haven't had an issue with the solar charging as my watch says it has full charge all the time. The only negative is the the band does scratch fairly easy especially on the bottom of the band under your wrist. I previously had owned a PAW1500, but someone had stole it. I perfer this version better as the features are the same, but I find it has a better lay out. I might be making this up, but I find the the alarm is louder in the newer version as the older version I couldn't rely on it to be loud enough to wake me up.
The second Pathfinder purchased
I'm hoping I eventually run out of people I know who want one of these..not the cheapest of watches but they are popular at our house. Each of the men I give to go wild..they use every button and function on the watch with no problems. On hikes and adventures they are happy to tell me the elevation gain, set timers for goals, etc....it's nice to have a product that does what is says..(and the functions have been very accurate/we've had others test the validity with their own equipment).
Works as advertised
The hardest part was that Casio does not put on their website how to adjust the band. You have to call them and then they email you a waiver to sign before they give you the instructions.