Garage

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Casio Protrek PRG - 130T - 7V Review

Since starting my new job, I have needed to be particularly pedantic about my timekeeping. I have to run meetings as often as 6 times a day and require the audience of talented, educated people. So far, my Casio G-shock 2210 has performed admirably. This watch has been on my wrist through all of my call-outs as a firefighter, including house fires and survived being bashed against walls and collisions involved with being a gym teacher. It has been scarred and is looking tired and as such needed to be replaced now that I have a white collar job.

As usual, I do a great deal of research before I buy anything. I hate buying poor quality but don't like paying for a name either. This was the list of requirements I had for the watch that would take my G-shock's place:
  1. Must be robust
  2. Solar powered
  3. Perpetual calendar
  4. Wide viewing angle
  5. Non alergenic (sounds strange but I get reactions to resin bands)
  6. Not too flashy
  7. Not too heavy
Initially I was eying the Citizen Eco-zilla, however the lack of a perpetual calendar was a deal breaker as a watch is only as tough as it's weakest part. The way I see it, having to adjust the calendar wears the seals and therefore effects the water resistance over time. I loved the look of the watch, but I couldn't pull the trigger because of that.

Casio Protrek PRG 130T 7V
Convinced with Casio's reliability and robustness, I decided I would either get a G-shock or a Protrek as they seemed to have the features I was looking for. I don't care much for resin / plastic watches so I wanted something metal, which I thought the 130T was. Here are the specs as they are found on Casio's website:

PRG 130T - 7V specs

I assumed that since the band was titanium, the watch would be too. Heck they even looked the same colour. This was not the case. I didn't know this and ordered it.

Packaging
The watch was very well packed. I have bought watches that cost more that were not as well packaged. It was delivered in a cardboard box which contained a box made of MDF which was very sturdy.
The instruction book was used as filler material so packaging was minimal. I liked this as it shows attention to detail. Upon opening the MDF box, I was greeted with this:
There was a card describing the main features of the watch, and an ID tag for the watch.

Fit and Finish
As you can see, the watch is very well finished. Everything mates as it should and nothing is damaged or out of place.

All buttons are large and easy to access. The 3 buttons used to access the main functions of the watch (compass, barometer / thermometer, altimeter) are well finished. They are larged and have very good grip due to a cross hatched pattern.
The sensor and mode button are located on the other side.
The back of the watch is also well finished and contains the important data; model no. country of manufacture etc..
The Band
I guess the band deserves special mention. The T on 130T denotes a titanium band, nothing else. Slightly misleading I guess however looking at the durability of my resin G-shock, I can't forsee this being a problem. It does make the watch light, as mine measured 102 grams. The band is high quality and everything snaps together with a satisfying "click"
As you can see, the clasp has a secondary safety clasp. I like this design as it stops the watch from being accidently unfastened.
Instruction Book
The instructions deserve special mention. Many times when the feature count increases, so too does the complexity of the instructions. I didn't have any difficulty understanding the instructions. They were logically written and very easy to follow with sufficient pictures. I managed to set the time, date and also enable the auto light within 2 minutes of picking up the book. This should not scare anyone away as I believe that Casio have done a good job at assembling the instructions.

Most Useful Features
In my opinion, the most useful features of any watch are those that aid in reliability, maintenance reduction and useability in various environments. The PRG 130T - 7V fits this bill. It features:
  • perpetual calendar
  • 200 meter water resistance
  • electro luminescent light
  • 5 independant alarms
  • pre-set world times
  • auto daylight savings
  • solar power
Although initially disappointed that the case was not titanium, I am content with this watch. Casio are watches that just work. They may not look too fancy but they are bomb proof and give reliable service. This watch should be no exception. I purchased this watch for $270 USD which was the cheapest I could find anywhere. For that price, I am happy with the mix of materials and functionality of the PRG 130T - 7V

*Note, if buying this watch online, be prepared to adjust the band. You will need to take some links out. Unless skilled in general mechanical things, take it to a jewler to avoid any damage.

6 comments:

  1. Thanks mate, this is a great review.

    I've been looking for a new watch to replace my G Shock (12 years of incredible service; still works but half the resin around the buttoms has broken away), and this one has been top of my list. To see someone with similar interests give it a good review seals my choice. The only question I have is, where did you get it from? My options are online, which I'm not keen to do without a good recommendation, or from a jeweller here in Brisbane... for $850AUD ("But we've got 20% off right now", says the salesgirl).

    Cheers mate. Thanks again for the great review.

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  2. G'day Fotherz. I appologize for taking my sweet time to reply, I've been out in the boonies. I bought my watch from Creation Watches. They are great to deal with and apparently the 130T only has a taxable customs value of $46. Who knew eh? I hope this info helps.

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  3. In the market for a new Casio, your review tipped me to this model - thanks! Your other reviews are great too.

    Cheers from a fellow Aussie.

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  4. Had one of these for a couple of years now, Love it, it has a few dings and scratches but that is mostly to the paint work. Have had no problems with this watch and I am pretty careless when it comes to banging the watch around, screen is still unbroken, water resistance is a biggy and so is being able to withstand the ministrations of my 18 month old nephew who likes to grab hold and literally swing off the band trying to get it off my wrist... Would definately recommend the protrek series...

    Cheers....

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  5. Hi! Is their a place in new york that you may know i could purchase this piece of gem?

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  6. Casio Protrek PRG - 130T - 7V Review. Since starting my new job, I have needed to be particularly pedantic about my timekeeping. I have to ... casioprotrek.blogspot.com

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