watch : Computer Hardware Buyers’ Glossary

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watch

If you are buying a wrist watch, here is a checklist of features that may be of interest to you.

  1. radio-synced from an atomic clock, for automatic timezone changes and accurate time. A wall mounted radio-synced clock may not work well because the location does not receive a good signal. You would think a radio-synced watch does not have this problem because you carry it about to a variety of locations each day. However, it only probes late at night, when you watch is in your bedroom. If it can’t access the signals, it reverts to the accuracy of an ordinary quartz watch. For optimum resync reception, go outside and point the watch face toward Colorado (or the nearest transmitter). Failing that, point it toward a window and close to a window. I consider this of prime importance because it helps the primary function of a watch — telling accurate time.
  2. solar powered so does not need to replace batteries. Without this feature after a few years the battery will wear out. You will have trouble finding a replacement battery and a jeweler willing to change it for you.
  3. backlight. Ideally low power so does not drain batteries. Timex has as excellent system they call Indiglo. Casio has an electroluminescent panel that stays lit for a few seconds after you release the button. They call this afterglow but it is not nearly as clear and bright. This feature is needed to use the watch in the dark.
  4. traditional analog or digital display, whichever you prefer. I find digital easier to read.
  5. Ground state (reset) return button. I know of no watch that has this feature. My Timex T49900NG has many features I do not use. If I accidentally press the wrong button, it takes perhaps 15 minutes to guide the watch back to ground state. I should just be able to press a button, or press and hold some button with another function to take me to directly to ground state no matter what state the watch is in. Any easy to remember gesture would do, e.g. pressing two buttons simultaneously.
  6. depth. 200 metres (218.72 yards) means you won’t have trouble with the crystal fogging.
  7. shock resistant.
  8. YYYY-MM-DD display
  9. big clear digits, with good contrast, easily visible in bright sunlight without visual clutter.
  10. band. Resin bands are more comfortable, but do not last very long. You have to buy expensive replacements direct from the manufacturer.
  11. multiple time zones
  12. daily alarms
  13. appointment alarm (alarms weeks in the future)
  14. stop watch
  15. mineral or sapphire crystal to prevent scratches. Acrylic is worst. Sapphire is most durable.
  16. sunrise/sunset
  17. compass. These give you a very rough reading, enough to orient yourself on a street map but not enough for marine navigation or hiking.
  18. tides. You will have configure this for location.
  19. phases of the moon.
  20. altimeter. Sometimes called twin sensor (altimeter/barometer/thermometer)
  21. temperature, not accurate because of the warmth of your wrist.
  22. Circular rulers. They have no function. They just decorate the face, take up space and obfuscate. I think they are intended to fool others into thinking you use your watch for complicated calculations.
  23. Standard watch band lugs. That way you will be able to replace a broken watch band with an inexpensive generic band.
  24. Aviator 12G shock resistance
  25. Data. Ability to beam a small amount of text into the watch for display.

Extra features you do not use just clutter the display and complicate operation of the control buttons.

Shopping

electronic product image recommend electronic⇒Casio Men's WV58A-1AVCR Waveceptor Atomic Digital Watchto electronic home
asin B001A5LKAS
Inexpensive watch with atomic sync.
  • atomic sync
  • not solar powered.
  • backlight
  • acrylic crystal. Scratches easily.
  • Multiple time zones
  • 50 meters depth
  • Resin band.
  • Free of frivolous features.
video review. manual.
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Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock
electronic product image recommend electronic⇒Casio Men’s WV-200A-4AVCF Wave Ceptor Red Watchto electronic home
asin B00OBBSUZG

Atomic resync, red, 29 time zones, 200 meter depth. module 3140. The eye in the upper right indicates how strong the resync signal is. The colour is more muted than in the illustration. This is what I use myself. manual.

Make sure you download and back up a copy of the manual. You will not be able to operate the watch without it.

The four button are refered to as:
A - B
C - D

  • Automatically synchs with an atomic clock in North America or Europe, but not Japan. It tries up to six times a day during the night. The syched time is 1 second faster than the CBC radio time signal and two seconds slower than my atomic synced Windows deskop. I am quite surprised that all three are not bang on. The Wave Ceptor is extremely accurate with the synching, better than a second in three million years.
  • It automatically adjusts DST twice a year. You can turn DST off.
  • The day and month display are in very small type. There was plenty of room for bigger digits. This is by far the most negative feature of the watch. It is very hard to read the day of month display. This is by far the most annoying feature of the watch. I have to put on my glasses, put the watch under a strong light, then hold it at various angles to read the day of the month.
  • The electroluminescent backlight is very dim and does not provide good contrast with the display. Timex’s Indiglo is many times brighter and better contrast.
  • The year is also displayed in very tiny type spaced like 20 16, which is confusing even when you are trying to read the day, not the the year. I think the problem is Casio is recycling components from some other more cluttered design. The display was not specifically designed for this watch.
  • For the sync to work, you have to leave your watch in a window overnight. This means you can’t use it to tell the time when you wake up in the middle of the night. However, I have found in warm weather the watch syncs fine on my wrist as I sleep.
  • Taking the watch outside, pointing it at to the south-east toward Fort Collins and doing a manual resync, results in only two of the three bars, but still an error. My Oregon Scientific alarm clock synchs just fine. It manages to resync automatically only about once a week, but with the quartz movement, it still stays accurate. As the weather has warmed, reception has improved. Now it syncs about every second night, even if I leave it on my wrist.
  • The back plate looks cheaply made — just a piece of sheet metal.
  • The alm (daily alarm) and sig (hourly alarm signal) labels are in microscopic unreadable type. The only way I could find out what they said was by reading the *.pdf manual zoomed.
  • Leave the watch running with the day of the week showing. If you leave it showing your timezone, accidentally jostling the D button will change your timezone and manual sync will not work.
  • To set the date/time etc, hit A C C C. Use B-D to modify a field.
  • Make sure you have DST configured to AUTO and Auto-receive to ON.
American flag amazon.com bestbuy.ca Canadian flag
Canadian flag amazon.ca canadacomputers.com Canadian flag
German flag amazon.de ncix.ca Canadian flag
Spanish flag amazon.es newegg.ca Canadian flag
French flag amazon.fr staples.ca Canadian flag
Italian flag amazon.it tigerdirect.ca Canadian flag
UK flag amazon.co.uk bestbuy.com American flag
India flag junglee.com ncixus.com American flag
UN flag other stores newegg.com American flag
staples.com American flag
tigerdirect.com American flag
Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock
electronic product image recommend electronic⇒Casio Men’s model MTGM900DA G-Shock Stainless Steel Tough Solar Atomic Digital Watchto electronic home
asin B0094BKASS
Both solar and radio-synced. Durable stainless steel band that does not pinch your hairs. Auto backlight with afterglow. World Time zones. 4 daily alarms 1 snooze alarm. module 3406, manual
American flag amazon.com bestbuy.ca Canadian flag
Canadian flag amazon.ca canadacomputers.com Canadian flag
German flag amazon.de ncix.ca Canadian flag
Spanish flag amazon.es newegg.ca Canadian flag
French flag amazon.fr staples.ca Canadian flag
Italian flag amazon.it tigerdirect.ca Canadian flag
UK flag amazon.co.uk bestbuy.com American flag
India flag junglee.com ncixus.com American flag
UN flag other stores newegg.com American flag
staples.com American flag
tigerdirect.com American flag
Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock
electronic product image recommend electronic⇒Casio Men's GW9010-1 G-Shock Mudman Solar Atomic Rally Watchto electronic home
asin B001A65ZBC
  • Part of the Mudman super tough series.
  • atomic sync
  • solar powered
  • backlight
  • Multiple time zones
  • 200 meters depth
  • Large, rubberised buttons.
  • Resin band.
  • Free of frivolous features, except for two rows of 5 dots that count off the seconds.

The litle hexagonal cells on the dial are where it collects light to power the watch.

video review. manual.
American flag amazon.com bestbuy.ca Canadian flag
Canadian flag amazon.ca canadacomputers.com Canadian flag
German flag amazon.de ncix.ca Canadian flag
Spanish flag amazon.es newegg.ca Canadian flag
French flag amazon.fr staples.ca Canadian flag
Italian flag amazon.it tigerdirect.ca Canadian flag
UK flag amazon.co.uk bestbuy.com American flag
India flag junglee.com ncixus.com American flag
UN flag other stores newegg.com American flag
staples.com American flag
tigerdirect.com American flag
Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock
electronic product image recommend electronic⇒Citizen Men's BM7170-53L Titanium Eco-Drive Watchto electronic home
asin B005MKGQMY
Does not need a battery. Analog with blue face. Antireflective-sapphire crystal. Titanium link bracelet. Water resistant to 100 m (330 ft): No backlight, but hands are luminescent.
American flag amazon.com bestbuy.ca Canadian flag
Canadian flag amazon.ca canadacomputers.com Canadian flag
German flag amazon.de ncix.ca Canadian flag
Spanish flag amazon.es newegg.ca Canadian flag
French flag amazon.fr staples.ca Canadian flag
Italian flag amazon.it tigerdirect.ca Canadian flag
UK flag amazon.co.uk bestbuy.com American flag
India flag junglee.com ncixus.com American flag
UN flag other stores newegg.com American flag
staples.com American flag
tigerdirect.com American flag
Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock

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