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on November 11, 2011
I completely do NOT understand the nay-sayers and their nagging critiques of this Citizen Eco-Drive.

"The band is too tight (or too short.)"
"The sweep second hand doesn't hit the marks within an atom's width."
"The flat crystal is too easily scratched."
"The luminosity isn't a neon sign like Indiglo!"
"It's too ugly to wear in the Boardroom."
"Why can't I set the day/date anytime I want?"
"The dial face is so small it makes me look gay."

I own a Hamilton Moon Watch, a Tudor Chronograph, and a Rolex Explorer II GMT. I bought the Rolex as a reward for myself in 1992 when I made Chief in the seagoing service and was still taking position star sights with a sextant. It has been my "daily driver" every day since ... except every three-to-four years when accuracy becomes erratic and I have to send it away to Rolex Dallas for a month for $750 service oiling, upkeep, and rehab maintenance. Now in the drawer waiting until I have funny funds for yet another service.

Once I received this Eco-Drive with two-day Amazon+ free delivery I put it on my wrist in direct sunlight for a few hours, set the time, and away we went. Set the day and date within seconds once I was outside the 9PM - 4AM window specified by the manual. Never take it off now. For a watch in this price range you can't engineer a set of switching gears for day/date change that can also handle an owner messing around with the settings by pulling out the crown at the same time. So wait until morning to do it. What's the big deal?

The luminous hands glow brightest just after you turn out the lights, which is perfect because at that time your eyes are still burnt out from staring at the LCD screen all night surfing Amazon reviews. When I wake up at 3:23:19 AM and my eyes have dark adapted again I can still see the hands including the sweep second hand. The Citizen canvas band is stiff until you wear it enough to break it in to the shape of your very own wrist, and then it sits very well when you wear it in Real Life® rolling your ulna and radius reaching for another beer. Just try to find the right-size jeweler's screwdriver to remove links from the Rolex diver's band to fit your wrist! (Even the damn band is multi-hundred$)

I am not NFL lineman big, but 6'1" @ 200 lbs. and nobody has made whimpering noises at me for wearing this watch. This is the kind of tough, no-nonsense, utilitarian looking time utensil that Abercrombie & Fitch made back in the day when Hemingway was finding leopards on Kilimanjaro or pulling in bluefin off the Finca before they sold out and began outfitting punkers and 1%ers on Wall Street. The Explorer II crystal hangs out enough MMs from the stainless case that it had a noticeable chip out of it before a year was out and I learned how it catches every steel rail or rock outcrop in sight. The 24-hour bezel paint flakes off EVERY YEAR wearing it in salt water or just your shower. The Citizen fits close, feels light, and catches nothing.

I am not sure of the press-fit crown and WR 100 meter rating, this is not an Oyster case and screw-down crown, but this is also not a $5,000 timepiece. I have not been swimming or diving with the Citizen. The quality of the rest of the watch is enough to give me confidence it will perform as advertised, and if it should not, I can buy another <$100.

This budget watch is thousands of miles and light years and many dollars ahead of any of its' true competition. I don't want a rubberbound button-filled busy ultramarathon Ironman digital display gizmo. I want a tough good-looking analogue watch that keeps excellent time, and I believe the promise that the Eco-Drive will keep it going, and going, and going ... while the rest of the stable appreciate in value on their way to or back from service.

I want a watch to tell me precise time, and maybe the day and date while it is at it. Not jewelry. Seriously, buy this watch.
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on September 29, 2017
I've only worn this watch for about ten days, but I absolutely love it and can't wait to review it. I looked at it hard before ordering. I love the simplicity and the ruggedness of it. Obviously, I can't speak yet to the longevity of the solar-powered movement but theoretically it should be a lifetime watch. It's so clean and simple I find myself looking at it all the time. Right out of the box I set it to the official USNO time, got as close as I could on a couple of tries and wound up exactly two seconds behind USNO. There it remains ten days later, exactly as I set it. It was easy to change the day/date, I kinda stumbled into it while I was in the middle of searching for the video to show me how. Easy and intuitive; no need for an instruction booklet when everything is online. The band is pretty tough and rugged. It's not as comfortable as a nice stainless steel dress watch band, but this is a field watch. I am a big fellow with nine inch wrists and the band fits fairly comfortably in the last hole. I will likely change the band out at some point, but the stock band is perfectly functional. I've become something of a watch enthusiast since my last one bit the dust and I began looking, but I see this little Citizen piece as being my daily wearer for years to come. It's affordable, yet it's not a throw-away. It's a piece of fine Japanese engineering. Bottom line, this watch is a bargain if you are looking for something clean and simple.
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on September 16, 2015
Ordered mine back March 21, 2014 so I've had this watch for well over a year now and I just wanted to let you good folks know that it's been a solid watch with no issue whatsoever. I've since replaced the strap for a silicon one just to give it another look. The original strap is still in decent shape but I simply wanted to try a different look so I went ahead and replaced it with a black silicon strap, looks pretty good with it too. The mineral crystal has also held well over the year and surprisingly hardly a scratch to it despite the daily wear and outdoor adventures. It has proven itself to be rugged, durable, accurate and reliable. Along to my still alive solar powered atomic Casio G-Shock digital watch(20 years old) this Citizen watch has been a great performer, I'm still impressed with it's functionality, easy readout dial with date, and simple designed. I would not hesitate recommending this watch for anyone looking for a reliable solar powered watch in a simple yet highly functional design, all at a very reasonable price. A solid 5 star rating for me.
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on December 16, 2016
Best inexpensive solar watch out there. No winding, no batteries, no problems. Have another solar watch but purchased this watch before a rafting trip on the Colorado because I wanted one that I would not mind breaking or losing. That was 7 years ago and since then I have worn it rafting, swimming, skiing, hiking, biking and working around the house. Its easy to read and easy to operate - no complex chrono or other functions - just a wristwatch. The strap is canvas with a leather back and still in good shape with just some wear on the leather and a few loose stitches and the canvas. Just rinse the salt and dirt of of it and its good to go. There are a few small scratches on the crystal, but pretty good after 7 years of abuse.
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on February 23, 2017
I am a fan of clean and elegant design. Before stumbling on to this watch, I was considering Seiko's automatic watches. But this watch of Citizen wins hands down.

First of all, I like the weight, diameter and thickness of the case - it is just perfect. The hour numbers are bigger than the minute numbers. That is how I like a watch to be. Seiko and Citizen's own other watches have it the opposite way around. Reading time requires more effort and practice. I also like the size of the hour and minute hands. It is easier to recognize which one is which. The numbers and hands glow in dark.

The date and day have black letters on white background and the one can chose English or Spanish for the display of the day (it was a nice surprise as this was not listed among the features).

I really don't like the strap. It is a bit hard and could have been a tab wider. The water resistance info on the dial could have been restricted to the backside of the case making the watch dial even cleaner.
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on November 30, 2016
I had a Solar watch for over 20 years and finally the stem broke (different brand). So I needed a replacement. I shopped all over and stumbled across this watch. I instantly liked it's no-nonsense look. In fact, like other reviewers said, the actual watch looks better than its picture. My watch is precise, that is the second hand actually stops on the line at each second. Also, I synchronized it to my iPhone and it is still tracking with the clock on my phone after 3 weeks. I'm impressed. Lots of value for the relatively inexpensive price. The canvas band looks good and is comfortable for me. However, I'm thinking of getting a leather band to dress it up a bit. If you're looking for a practical everyday watch, this is it. Oh, I e-mailed Citizen to ask if they manufactured a "twin" watch that had black numbers on a white background. They responded very quickly and informed me that they did not manufacture the watch with black numbers and white background. Too bad because I would have bought it immediately and dress it up with the leather band and leave this watch with its canvas band. Oh well...I do recommend this watch.
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on March 23, 2015
I waited so long to get this. I am very pleased. I wear it every day, almost all day. No problems. One note--read the directions about setting the date before assuming you have a defective piece. For the first few days I couldn't figure out what was wrong with the date, but then I went straight to the Citizen website and watched a video, and there is something unique with setting the date by pulling the crown out only after (or during) the second hand passes the 12 o Clock notch. This is a handsome, comfortable watch, feels just heavy and shiny enough so as to distinguish itself from many other crappy watches with fancy names. The timekeeping is very accurate (after it fully "charges" in some kind of light). I compare the time (to other non-mechanical times) everywhere I go, and it matches about perfectly. Love it. I did replace the band with a very nice looking black Nato 18mm band, and it looks fantastic. The green band is sturdy and nice looking but it was uncomfortable and didn't fit quite right on my medium sized wrist.
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on August 25, 2017
I love the simplicity of this watch. It is quite difficult, or impossible, to find a watch with a normal diameter size that has day and date at this sort of price with this great quality. I tried the Seiko 5, but the brushed bezels didn't vibe with my taste, plus the mechanical watches have some degree of error to them. I would've enjoyed the error and resetting the time, but you can't complain about the precision you get with citizen. Many of my family members have owned citizen watches for 8-12 years so far, the quality and longevity is there.
The bezel is reflective and shiny with subtle hints of brushed metal, thus it can easily be dressed up or down. I thought I would replace the band but it's grown on me quite a bit, I refuse to wear other bands because this is so comfortable and easy to use. The band gives it a rugged look which hasn't been an issue when I dress up too, it doesn't look completely out of place. A $12 leather band is easy to put on for certain occasions but I miss the comfort of the original band. It did smell once, I took the straps off and put it in the a zippered pocket in some sweatpants and ran it through the wash, but not the dryer (I have no particular reason for air drying). Was like new after!
Highly recommend. No buyers remorse, I'd buy it again.
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on December 2, 2016
I bought this watch as a replacement for my Wenger which lasted about 25 years and I am not disappointed. I wanted an accurate watch that was durable having gone thru several watch bands and batteries with the Wenger. I do not mind the canvas band at all, it is not as comfortable as other types and does not look as good either but it looks fine and wearing it doesn't bother me. I have a 7 inch wrist and the band fits snug in the fourth hole which is in the middle of the adjustment range. The initial setting of the watch was not that difficult. The instructions have you advance the time forward until you get a date roll over which is probably important to get the day and date to increment together. The second hand registration is right on the marks. The accuracy is quite good, The watch has lost less than a second in the past month. Initially it was loosing more and that may have been due to not having the battery fully charged? Bottom line is that this watch is better looking and more accurate than my Wenger and I do not have to change the battery.
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on March 5, 2015
You have to review this as a $100 watch, because that's what it is. It's not fair to review it against watches costing hundreds more, not even other Citizen watches. The question is: do you get $100 worth of watch? Absolutely.

The finish on this watch is very nice, especially at this price point. It's handsome to look at and the canvas strap feels especially sturdy. It's actually difficult to work the buckle the first few times, but I consider that a good thing. If you have large wrists, beware that this watch will look tiny. The case itself is fairly small and the strap is quite thin. I am a smaller guy, though, and it's nice to find a stylish watch that doesn't have a 45mm case that makes me look like a little boy borrowing daddy's watch.

Overall, I'm very happy. Would absolutely buy again.
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