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Customer Review

176 of 202 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Loaded w/ features & mediocre accuracy..., August 23, 2008
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This review is from: Casio Men's PAW1500T-7V Pathfinder Multi-Band Solar Atomic Ultimate Watch (Watch)
This watch has about all the gimmicks you could want in a watch. Well, perhaps a GPS, heart rate monitor and MP3 player would be nice inclusions... However, it is solar-powered with a generous battery reserve and should never die with normal light exposure. I've never seen my battery level fall below H (high). It has a thermometer, barometer, altimeter, compass, moonphase indicator, tide chart, automatic synchronization with international atomic clock radio broadcasts and the standard multi-function watch stuff like stopwatch, world time, etc.

That's all fine and dandy, but let's face it, this is NOT a precise instrument.

The compass is surprisingly consistent, though I did have to calibrate it away from the factory preset initially. I feel this feature is the watch's strongest feature due to its accuracy and the fact that it could someday save your life. Still, it's not perfect. The compass display only lasts a few seconds, so you can't use it like a real compass.

The barometer also is quite consistent once calibrated, though I have seen errors of 2 hPa in either direction.

Thermometer is rather fickle if the watch is being worn on skin. I've noticed as much as 5 degrees Fahrenheit error in either direction. It's typically within 1 F degree either way. Have never verified the thermometer's accuracy when not being worn, so can't comment on that.

Altimeter gives decent approximation. I live at sea level and get readings as low as -10 meters and as high as 10 meters while at sea level. Typically it reads 0 or 5 meters. On a recent trip about 250 miles from home, with the watch calibrated at my home's sea level, I reached a peak altitude of 1195 meters, according to the watch. On my descent, I compared the watch's altitude reading with a posted USGS altitude sign. At 457.2 meters (1500 feet) the watch read a pretty consistent 420 meters.

The moonphase indicator is, of course, very accurate.

Tide charting leaves much to be desired. It calculates first high tide to within 20 minutes. Pretty good. However, this is the only actual high or low tide to be seen and to actually see the actual time, you must go into the Adjust mode. The actual graphing of the tides is sloppy and inaccurate. A dot-plotted chart like that used for the barometer should be incorporated. The 2-hour increments of the present graph also hinder true accuracy. Also, this mode ALWAYS defaults to showing tide at 6:00 am. This time can be adjusted manually each time you enter the mode, but the default time CANNOT be changed. Tide charting is the watch's weakest feature.

Rather disappointed with the atomic clock synchronization too. I live in HNL, one of the listed time zones that should be able to receive atomic calibration. Has not happened yet, after over a month. When I try to manually synchronize, I get a level 1 (low, but existent) signal indication, but no synchronization. Frustrating.

It's also a little disappointing that a "titanium" watch has a PLASTIC shell and stainless back and presumably a something-other-than-titanium case. The band does appear to be legitimate titanium but I wouldn't be surprised if it's titanium-plated aluminum or something. This watch, despite it's substantial bulkiness, is very light. My Citizen Eco-Drive Skyhawk, which is TRULY a titanium watch and is notably smaller, is noticeably heavier.

All in all, it's a cool watch. It's very stylish for a digital watch. It's comfortable. It's very durable. And you'll always have reasonable accuracy from any function (maybe not with tide charting), with a good compass. Worth the Amazon price, but not the suggested retail price.
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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 6, 2008, 8:35:05 PM PDT
Just a couple of points and inaccuracies. Temperature: You can't measure ambient temperature with any device that close to your skin. If you want accurate temperatures, you have to take the watch off. Altimeter: A wrist altimeter has trouble reading the altitude while driving in a fast moving vehicle. The air pressure in the car is different from the local atmospheric pressure so the watch won't make correct reading of the change in pressure as you change altitude. Tide calculator: You input the current high tide time for your location and from that time forward, it'll calculate based on that time (if you change to/from Daylight Savings Time you'll have to readjust the high tide as it will have changed by an hour). While in the tide/moon phase mode, you can calculate a future tide based on a future date and time you input. When in this mode, it defaults to 6:00 (this does not effect the high tide you've put in for your location. In this mode it's using the high tide you've put in to calculate a future date and time). You use the compass and altimeter buttons to adjust the date and the barometer button to adjust the hour. Tide graph: The tide graph is fairly accurate and clear. you have seven dots that represent high, falling quickly, falling slowly, low, rising slowly, rising quickly, and again high. It also shows you both the spring and the neaps tide' and graphs what that means (That the difference between low and high is small during a neaps tide for example). Atomic clock: I live in southwest florida and rarely don't get a signal. I've found it's more likely to sync if you point it towards the transmitter rather than at the window as the instructions say. The case: It is titanium with a stainless steel back. Stainless steel is stronger for the same thickness of titanium. Sometimes dive watch manufacturers use a stainless back to save on bulk, even if the case is made of a different material.

Posted on Feb 4, 2011, 8:49:23 PM PST
Pard says:
I believe HNL is outside the range of the atomic clock in Ft. Collins, CO, which has a 2,000 mile range. The synchronization range maps are printed in the Casio owner's manual. So your watch will probably never synchronize automatically (or manually). This is all explained in the owner's manual - the time zones in the watch have nothing to do with the atomic clock synchronization.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 2, 2011, 3:01:47 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 2, 2011, 3:12:15 PM PDT
7 says:
I'm not trying to burst anyone's bubbles. But I'm not stupid. I know how to take altimeter readings. This thing is a watch. It's not an altimeter. As a watch, it provides rather accurate altitude readings but it is a FAR cry from surveying equipment. If you take critical readings, do not rely on this watch to provide them.

Oh, and this case IS plastic. Resin, whatever they want to call it. There's NO question about that. Once the paint starts wearing off as mine has, you'll have no question about this fact.

Despite the fact that none of this watch's features have critical accuracy, it remains my favorite watch. However, in the years I've owned it, I am now noticing that a few pixels, one in the date display and two in the tide graph are beginning to not work intermittently. I don't know where my warranty information is so I don't know if I can get this repaired under warranty. I guess we'll see...

Ugh. Just found out this watch only had a 1-year warranty. Bummer...

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 2, 2011, 3:04:23 PM PDT
7 says:
Hi Pard,

Well, the instruction manual said that HNL could receive atomic time-setting. But to date, I have NEVER received an atomic time-setting. Not manually, not automatically. With all the military here, I expected that atomic radio signal for time would be available. I haven't found it if it is. :(

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 14, 2012, 8:38:50 AM PST
JD says:
I loved this watch but the inaccuracy made it a bit pointless for me. What use are functions that display consistently (wildly) inaccurate info? Looks awesome though. I gave mine to a friend and went with a Suunto Core which has been and continues to be very accurate on all functions. I still prefer the Casio look of this watch but for actual use and measurements, the Suunto blows it away.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2012, 8:57:26 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 17, 2012, 9:00:47 AM PST
Mojave Max says:
For "7."
Do put the watch next to the window facing outside overnight? Atomic synchonization always works with all my casios. All adjust to the same time very accurately.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2012, 9:13:58 AM PST
7 says:
Hi Max. Thank you for the advice. Unfortunately, I've tried everything, including leaving the watch in various windows facing different directions overnight and I cannot get atomic sync. I'm pretty sure it's because I live in Honolulu.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 17, 2012, 9:26:45 AM PST
7 says:
Hi Max. Thank you for the advice. Unfortunately, I've tried everything, including leaving the watch in various windows facing different directions overnight and I cannot get atomic sync. I'm pretty sure it's because I live in Honolulu.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 15, 2014, 5:25:10 PM PST
Since you live Honolulu, one can thus ascertain you use your Casio Sea Pathfinder in SALTWATER and salt is corrosive to paint. We don't know if in fact you rinsed your watch with tap water after each saltwater use. But I would believe even that won't save the painted areas of your watch but it might have taken longer to wear off if you had frequently rinsed it off afterwards.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2014, 10:37:50 PM PST
7 says:
Hi Brandon,

I've actually never taken it in the ocean. I regularly do clean it though with a toothbrush and Palmolive.

It's been a good watch for the most part but all the paint making contact with skin has come off and the date digits and a couple of tide bars have bad pixels.
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