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.