A classic from Casio – the ATC-1200 Altimeter, Barometer and Compass model with the QW1170 Module from around 1996, almost 20 years old and still looking good and going strong today. As with many older models such as this it’s wise to check the automatic calendar function, to ensure it remains correct today – this model is OK until 2029, so will probably see me out! (Month/Day cycle ratio pattern is repeated every 28 years – so could be corrected).
This is however one serious bit of Casio kit, well made and beautifully fitted out with the almost science fiction style sensor housings and a very neat dial set up that manages to look just right. Dimensions are good too at just 50 mm lug to lug, so fits smaller wrists, though case (with the sensors) width is larger at about 56 mm – this lies along the wrist so not really an issue. The watch case depth is the success however at under 15.5 mm means the watch doesn’t feel big at all and in fact wears well on my average to small wrist.
The watch has a Casio flexible resin rubber buckle strap which fits with standard spring-bar fixings (I like) and measures maybe 19/20 mm, so easy to change to any kind of alternative strap should you so wish.
The standard view on the display shows on the top line – the Day of the week. The main display lower part shows Date, Month and Year with the Time (including seconds). The seconds mobile virtual display tracks around the perimeter of the dial with black segment markers against a green background which looks rather good.
In addition to the digital compass (with 5 memory settings available), this model has Altimeter, Barometer and Thermometer sensors, 5 independent Alarms and Stopwatch with split times and 2 finish times settings. It has a warning indicator for low battery and a magnetic fields abnormality indication plus a Sensor malfunction indicator.
2 batteries are used in this model which are the SR927W series and these have an approximate life of up to 18 months to 2 years depending on function use. Note when changing batteries it’s important to reset the module to empty old memory/counter settings and this is easy – touch the AC contact and the battery (+) side with metallic tweezers or similar for around 2 seconds.
Note – A useful tip with some of these older models is when after a battery change nothing seems to happen – push the “light” button and the display will often activate ON.
Water Resistance is 100 m. It also has a handy function if you get carried away with all the functions and forget which one you’re in – simply press C button (lower left) for 2 or 3 seconds and the display will revert to the main Time screen.
The 1990’s and early 2000’s was a great time for Casio innovation and there are in fact many “odd” function style models from this time. Not only are they often well before their time and the pre-cursors for much of the technology you see today, but are viewed as quite rare collectors pieces. And this is not so much due to their age, but owing to when they were produced, as at that time it was an amazing period of technological and miniaturization experimentation, the likes of which you will probably never see again.
Instructions – Casiopathfinder_1170_owners_manual