Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Intermezzo #2: Protrek PRG-80YT-1V

Not a G-Shock today, though I think this watch is related to the G-Shock line. Earlier I obtained the PRG-50 and the resin version of the PRG-80. My third ProTrek is this PRG-80YT.
The PRG-80 model was the successor of the PRG-50. I own the PRG-50, but rarely wear it. The 50 only has the sensor function, but misses the countdown timer and a stopwatch function. I great miss in a watch of the Casio Sports line. A colleague of me who is a sports teacher owns also a PRG-50 and had complained a lot about the absence of the stopwatch .
The PRG-80 made it all good. I do not know when this watch was actually released, it would probably have been around 2005. I think Casio picked up that the stopwatch function was missed badly. But not only a Stopwatch and Countdown timer function was added.

Also a World time function was added with 34 home cities. A good function for travelers and people with connections all over the world.
The PRG-80YT is the limited edition Black Titanium model. I do not know what Limited Edition means for this model, but it was actually reasonable easy to buy one for a good price for a long period.
The black coating looks cool. I think it's a kind of anodized coating. It seems pretty tough. I have worn this watch many times. If you look close at some macro photo's, you'll notice some very small scratches or deformations, but the coating is still there. Note these flaws are only visible, because my macro lens blows up details very big.
The PRG-80YT is a so called 3 sensors watch. On board there is a temperature, air pressure and magnetism sensor.
Actually the air pressure sensor is temperature dependent. Therefore a thermometer is needed for acurate readings for the barometer an altimeter.
When using the barometer function for the first time, you'll notice the new trend indicator. A blue spike tells you if the air pressure is stable, rising or falling.
The place where the spike appears shows how much has changed since the last measurement. A scale is on the right side of the dial. For the three countries still using imperial units, it also shows non-ISO units.
The altimeter has an accuracy of 5 meters. It seems not very accurate, but in practice this is more than enough. Since the air pressure differences within 5 meter are very low I think this is accurate enough. If someone is using an altimeter, he/she does not use it for a climb or descent of a few meters.
For people who are new to barometric altimeters, the altimeter only gives the right altitude if it is recently set to the correct altitude. Since the air pressure changes over time, the altimeter will give different altimeter readings when one stays on the same place. This sounds like the altimeter is useless, but if you set the altimeter in the morning at stable weather, you can use your altimeter the whole day. The accuracy becomes less when there are big weather changes. Don't trust on your barometric altimeter during a thunderstorm. I guess it is also not recommended to do a mountain trip then...
The compass function looks very cool and is very accurate. If needed you can do a biderectional correction, but if your watch is accurate, I won't recommend it, since the accuracy of your hands is much less than the accuracy of the compass. Four spikes (the thick one shows the North) appear on the Duplex display so you cannor only read direction, but also view the four compass directions.
The display is a Duplex type, which means there are actually two LCD displays placed over each other. The lower is the most used display, while the upper display is used for the spikes to display the barometric or altimetric trend and the compass directions.
The photo's above show two test displays of this watch. They show all digits possible.
The bracelet of the PRG-80YT is one of the most comfortable bracelets I know. Due to the use of titanium, the watch only weighs 117g. You would expect a much higher weight for such a big watch.The high wearing comfort is probably the result of two soft wrist rests on the back of the watch. They hold the watch in it's place. You almost do not feel the watch on your wrist.
Also important for the comfort is that you can adjust the bracelet length not only by taking out links, a fine adjust of 4 holes is present at the three fold clasp. This three fold clasp won't go loose easily. A security lock is placed over the closed clasp. Before releasing the clasp, you'll need to remove this extra lock.
Although the watch looks big, it looks great on my 7"wrist. I have even seen this watch on smaller wrists, without the watch looking cartoonesk.

Different from it's predecessors is the placement of the ADJUST button. It looks like Casio wants to prevent unintended adjustment in outdoors use. The ADJUST button is placed next to the light button, but is recessed in the case, so it's harder to activate the button.
My PRG-80YT has very accurate time keeping. In my experience it gains only a few seconds per month (2 or 3). The PRG-80 has been succeeded by the PRW-1100, which has a 5 band Atomic Time function on board. Of course this is a great feature, but I can live with 3 seconds of per month. Maybe I will buy a PRG-1200 in the future. This watch has the same functions as the PRW-1100, but has a bulkier and more sporty look.

4 comments:

Frans said...

Hi Sjors...great work your comments and pictures of the PRG 80YT. I am somewhat concerned that I bought a fake one as my backplate is stating that it is made in Taiwan although all other marks are the same and quite happy with the functions. Is this type made in Taiwan?
Frans

Sjors said...

Hi Frans,

Are you a fellow Dutchman? Anyway, if your ProTrek looks like mine (in silver, resin or black) and has the same working functions, I think you bought not a fake model. Casio has factories in whole Soutch East Asia, and Taiwan is quite a big factory I think.

I checked my resin PRG-80, but it has the same backplate as this black titanium model.

Cheers,

Sjors

Craig Hartley said...

Do you know how to replace the battery? The night light no longer works nor do any of the functions, I guess the rechargeable battery is goosed. Can you replace it with a non rechargeable?
Many thanks
Craig

Amir said...

The night light can be disables/enabled while long pressing the light button (3 seconds), you'll here short beep followed by "A.EL" notification on the screen
The auto-light will work only in dark places so check its functionality in very low light area (closet or under the table :) )