Seems I get asked all sorts of question these days, regarding my opinion on what model will do this or that or will this one be suitable for whatever. And I try my best to give a sensible opinion, but with the proviso, that it’s just my opinion, nothing more, nothing less. The latest one yesterday was – “What digital watch can I get – not too expensive now, (he meant cheap – I know him well!) that isn’t a blasted Casio (his words, not mine) or a Timex or any of them things?”. (his grammar too! – he’s going to love me when he sees this Post! LOL). And he added, “And it’s like you always say, I want to be able to read the damned thing!”
Not that easy then I thought as there are virtually lots and lots of cheap digitals out there that are indeed almost illegible and unreadable, or look silly and outlandish, then there’s the stealth look (you can’t see it let alone read it!) and so on and on . . . .
But against all the odds, I found this nice little Rip Curl Atom model that to my mind fits the bill perfectly. It sports a neat digital look, slightly retro I suppose, and the case is a nice size at 42mm and constructed of a light weight high impact resistance ABS plastic, coupled to a soft polyurethane strap (OK in hot or cold climates).
The strap fitting is eminently sensible with standard spring bars, so that’s a plus in my book. The digital readout is large and clear with Date/Time/Stopwatch/Countdown Timer/Dual Time/Alarm and back light and it’s depth rated Water Resistant up to 100m and that’s also very good.
Added to that is a Guarantee that is better than many with 5 years on the movement, 2 years on the Water Resistance and 1 year on the battery.
What I like most about this watch is the fact it has no distractions, no large obtrusive buttons, and no over-shrouding of them either (Casio take note), the strap can be as shown or black or almost anything, as you can so easily change it and there’s other colors including a Yellow cased version (add in the 100m Water Resistance and I can see snorkelers loving this for holidays). Not surprising really as Rip Curl also have GPS enabled surfing & positional models.
The dial/case is not over burdened with advertising or text for dummies in fancy colors either, which makes a welcome change from some of the stuff thats around. In short; it’s super simple, quite well specified module wise and not a lot wrong with it at all, and if you want to steer clear of (and my friend certainly does) the ubiquitous mainstream big three styles, then I would think this is the one to get.
It’s also not expensive at around £50 here in the UK, so you can’t really go wrong and it certainly won’t break the bank.
Personally I find it’s rather refreshing to see a model that keeps things in perspective, has modern digital yet familiar lines, easy to read, no gimmicks and with a guarantee that seems pretty sensible to me.
And if I was looking myself for a straight forward digital watch, I might join my friend and put in a joint order – one for him and one for me!
Note – You might be forgiven for thinking that this non mainstream model might suffer from a lack of instructions, but you would be wrong. They have quite a few files around showing their different displays and so on plus a reasonably good overview one, which shows a variety of version instructions. The following images I think are for the Atom model shown here. To enlarge just click on the image.
It does show one thing and that is to get yourself a decent no frills digital watch with good functions and looks, you don’t have to rely on the same old Casio or Timex formats. These of course are the top dogs and the front runners driving investment in technology and so on, but their respective styles can sometimes once in a while seem, dare I say – boring.
A bit like that old car you’ve had for years and the same model replacement you always get – it’s sometimes nice to get a different dash to look at over the next few years and in fact you may be surprised.
As I was with this Atom watch – and at £50? A nice surprise!