Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Casio G-Shock GW-9200RJ-4JF Men in Rescue Orange

Yesterday I wore and took pictures of (but didn't have time to post about) a Casio G-Shock I bought just over two years ago. It's a GW-9200RJ-4JF Riseman (not to be confused with the original Riseman) and is part of the Men in Rescue Orange series. Not to bore you with minutiae, but the watches pictured in that link are actually the "export" versions. The U.S. got the export version, but I bought this from a person who imported it from Japan. In the case of the Riseman, the main differences are the lack of radio controlled atomic timekeeping (Multiband 6) on the U.S. version, and a different caseback. The caseback on the U.S. version has an engraving of a dragon while the Japanese version has a flying squirrel. Both versions have the orange-tinted display and very cool backlight graphic, described by Casio as "a special multi-purpose rescue tool". The watch is great for a number of reasons: It's bright orange, and I love bright orange, so I love wearing it (especially if I'm wearing some coordinating orange clothes or shoes.) It's big and chunky, similar to a Frogman, but somehow looks more futuristic. It has great functionality, including a thermometer, barometer, altimeter, world time, 5 alarms, etc. Second only to my Pathfinder PAW-1300 in functionality, which adds a compass but gives up some water resistance. This is one of my watches that gets worn very regularly, especially in the summer, and I don't believe I'll tire of it anytime soon.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Casio G-Shock DW-6900CS-1DR

Do you like 6900s? Of course you do! It's one of the most iconic G-Shock designs, often imitated but never duplicated. Even when Casio wanted to update the classic with Tough Solar and Multi Band 6 technologies, they didn't mess with the design. This 6900 I'm wearing today is from the "Crazy Colors" series. I believe it part of the first series, but Casio have done many more since then. It seems they were pretty popular. As you can see in the photos, this watch doesn't deviate from the classic three-eye 6900 design. The bright green face, markings and even LCD panel and backlight are all pretty unique. Adding to the flashiness is the case and band which are finished in high-gloss black instead of the more traditional matte finish. The whole package really pops and gets plenty of attention year-round.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Japanese-style Multicolor LED Binary Watch

The watch I'm wearing today I just got this week, direct from China, from Meritline. It's truly amazing how much cheap stuff I've bought from them, although DealExtreme is still my favorite for flashlights. Even more amazing is both merchants can ship their items from China to the U.S.A. for free. This watch is inspired by the modern, quirky watches from places like Tokyoflash and ThinkGeek. One thing that makes this watch unique, even among the wild watches at the preceding links, is that it is a true "binary" watch. The lights on the left and bottom correspond to binary digits, with four bits on the left and six bits on the bottom. They can respectively display a maximum of 15 and 63 in decimal numbers, but they only ever need to go as high as 12 and 59 in this application. It's difficult to read the time at a glance (without doing some math in your head) but I'm sure if I wore the watch regularly for a month is would become easier. The bright LEDs display the time when the upper button is pressed, and the watch can be set to automatically light ever quarter-hour. The date is displayed the same way (month on the left, day on the bottom) when the upper button is pressed a second time. It's a neat watch, admittedly very cheap, but for a novelty watch it certainly serves its purpose. I actually think it looks more expensive than it is, possibly because the design is so simple.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Casio G-Shock G-304EH-7 Eric Haze

I'm wearing today one of my few G-Shocks that haven't yet made it to my blog. Coincidentally, I bought this one two years ago this week. The G-304EH-7 originally came out in 2006, and I tried to buy one new in 2009, but found everybody sold out. Mine was purchased secondhand, so I didn't get the cool packaging. This was the second of three Eric Haze/G-Shock collaborations. The first was this 6900 and the third was this 5600. As I mentioned before, he also designed the G-Shock 25th Anniversary graphics and logos. The most unique part of this watch is certainly the band, which has a black and white striped pattern (one of Haze's trademarks) along with an embossed Haze "tag" on the end of the strap. The caseback also has the same tag. Other than the color, strap and details, the watch is a normal "Street Rider" G-Shock. It's a big watch, 45mm across, but still reasonably low-profile. The velcro strap is very comfortable, and while the reverse display is not incredibly legible, there is an EL backlight, and the analog hands are easy to read. This is one that I don't wear often because it is fairly rare and the cloth strap is less dirt resistant than the resin straps on most G-Shocks. When I do wear it I'm impressed with the comfort and uniqueness of the design. I'm very happy to have it in my collection.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Casio G-Shock GX56-4CR

Today, a little bit of pseudo déjà vu again. It's my third and final (for now) GX56, the orange GX56-4CR. Like my other two GX56s this is big, chunky and awesome. I didn't notice until today that all three of mine have reverse displays. Not great from a legibility standpoint, but they do look cool. And I did take the photos today, but didn't realize I had the date set incorrectly until I was editing them.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Bulova Accutron 63F77 Automatic

I actually wore this watch (and took the photos) earlier this week but didn't get around to writing about it until today. I picked this up from a couple years ago. $150 for a "Swiss Made" automatic is really hard to beat these days. These appeared to be closeouts as original MSRP was $670. I did see them later drop to $100, but I'm sure they disappeared quickly at that price. But looking beyond the price, this is a really nice watch. I'd say the overall quality is on par with most Hamiltons. The design falls between a dress watch and a more rugged "tool" watch, and because of this it makes a really great all-around watch. The case is 40mm with 22mm lugs, so it's pretty substantial. The case has a nice combination of brushed and polished surfaces, once again walking the line between dress and casual. The leather strap is nicely finished and not at all flimsy, and is fastened with a stainless deployant. My favorite part of this watch is the dial (protected by a sapphire crystal.) The white dial has a number of fine details that work really well together. The fine diamond pattern in the center is surrounded by a ridged ring which is then duplicated just inside the seconds track. In between the two rings are the bright silver-tone applied roman numerals, and the open hands share this finish. The second hand also has a Bulova logo on its "tail" which mirrors the applied logo at 12 o'clock. On the other side, the exhibition caseback shows off the engraved rotor and somewhat plain ETA 2892.A2. This is actually a really nice movement and much more modern than the ETA 2824, which I have a number of in my collection. As you can tell, I'm quite fond of this watch, and the more closely I examine it the more things I find to like.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Seiko SNDA67 Chronograph

As you may have noticed, I don't have many analog quartz watches. (I'll admit, after looking through my previous blog posts, I do have more than I realized.) They simply don't hold the same appeal for me as mechanical watches. Occasionally, I do find one that is hard to resist. Today I'm wearing one such watch, a Seiko SNDA67 chronograph. I was mainly drawn to this by its functional looks, very reminiscent of some Sinn/Bell & Ross dials as well as other military-style watches. It's highly legible with thick hands and big hour and minute markers. The chronograph function measures to 1/20 of a second which is a nice feature (and watching the 1/20 sec. hand spin through its 20 clicks once a second is temporarily entertaining.) The case is a good size, about 44mm diameter, but lower profile than most of my automatic chronographs. Overall finish is excellent, typical of Seiko, and while the bracelet isn't up to that of a Seiko Monster, it's still nicer than many. The crystal is Hardlex, Seiko's proprietary hardened mineral crystal, so it should be pretty resistant to scratches. The crystal doesn't have any anti-reflective coating, so glare could be a factor depending on the scenario. This watch has an MSRP of $295, but is readily available for less than half that. It's definitely a solid package at a nice price.