I just received this Citizen Aquamount on Monday (9/8/08) and really love it. I looked at it from time to time online but the price was usually north of $500 which kept me from going for it. After another watch purchase did not work out, I went searching again for watches on my wish list and found the Ti Aquamount on eBay for a reasonable price. After a week, here are my impressions.
- Brand - Citizen
- Model number - JP3050-55W
- Official or unofficial Nickname (if any exists) - Aquamount
A 200 meter titanium cased quartz divers' watch with depth, altitude and temperature sensors. I first saw the Aquamount mentioned (I believe) on the Digital/ABC forum, as the module includes altitude and barometric pressure measurement. Over the years I have become more involved with the Boy Scouts of America and have valued divers' watches for their tough construction. When hiking, camping and swimming I don't need to worry about my watch, I need to make sure the boys are safe and having a good time while learning outdoor and leadership skills. I have used automatic divers from Seiko, Citizen and other Swiss brands while at camp and other outings with the Scouts, and wished that I had more "tools" available to me on my wrist. I always had a clip on watchband compass, but thought it would be good to have some way to monitor weather conditions as well. My first foray into ABC watches was through a Suunto Vector, a watch I like very much, but its' water resistance made me a bit leary, as if I had to dive into a fast running stream, lake or pool in an emergency it could be ruined. The search for a dive watch with additional functions led me to the Aquamount.
- movement information/review:
Citizen Caliber C900 quartz. Three hand movement plus 2 LCD display windows for additional functions. Digital functions include dive depth, dive time, dive alarms, dive logs, split second chronograph, temperature, altitude and barometric pressure measurement and logging.
- Case review:
Solid titanium screw back case, screw down crown at 4:00, pushers at 2:00, 8:00, 10:00, rotating dive bezel.
- crystal review - Mineral glass
- bracelet/strap review (including clasp):
Solid titanium bracelet links and end links. Bracelet includes divers' extention, push button lock and safety flip lock.
- bezel review (if it has a rotating bezel):
Titanium colored 60 click rotating divers' bezel with lumed dot. Bezel lines up perfectly.
- review of any special features or additional complications (such as power reserve indicators, chronograph functions, moon phase, etc.):
Where to start! As mentioned, this diver includes many extra features within its' two LCD displays, including digital time (12 or 24 hr mode, minutes, seconds, day and date), dive time, dive depth, water temperature, dive time alarm, dive depth alarm, rapid ascent alarm, logging of 6 dives, surface time between dives, split second chronograph, altitude, barometric pressure and temperature measurement and logging, barometric pressure trending.
- closing opinions and recommendations:
For starters, be ready to read the manual! At 93 pages, it compares in complexity to Suunto and Casio ABC watches. It is not an intuitive watch, but once you learn the interaction of the 3 pushers it isn't hard to remember them. All measurement units are SI, you can't switch to Imperial measurement so if you are used to meters instead of feet, Hecto Pascals instead of inches of mercury and degrees Celcius instead of Farenheit you are set. Otherwise you will need to convert in your head. As I am comfortable with SI units it doesn't bother me though I prefer Imperial units. Since this watch wasn't marketed to the U.S. I am not surprised that both sets of units are not included. I also understand that it is a discontinued model, so it may not be easy to find though I have seen a few on auction sites and some Internet retailers. There are 2 other models of the Aquamount that I know of, including a titanium model with gold accented bezel released before the one under review, and a stainless steel/black dial version as well.
Impressions: I love it! First it is a Citizen, by far a company most represented in my watch boxes and pretty much my personal favorite. I have wanted this watch for awhile and was thrilled to find a new one in my price range. The titanium construction keeps this beast of a watch light and comfortable on my wrist. I haven't measured the size but I estimate it is at least 44mm, maybe 48mm from sensor to sensor.
I have other Citizen titanium watches, and none of them have a mark or scratch on them unlike titanium watches I own from other manufacturers. I expect the same from the Aquamount.
Lume is Citizen's trademark cool blue, though the minute hand lume is bright green. The hour hand is very short, outlined in white, while the minute hand is a skeletinized yellow, the cutout aligned with the LCD displays so the hands don't obscure the additional digital information. The second hand is a fluorescent orange with lumed dot. The Arabic numerals and markers on the dial are raised a bit, giving the charcoal grey dial a nice 3 dimensional quality. All the markers are uniformly coated in lume, and both the blue and green lume last substantially through the night.
One thing other than price that kept me from purchasing when I first saw this watch is the reported 2 year battery life, and the requirement that battery changes are performed by Citizen. It will be a pain, but I will dutifully sent it to Citizen service when it comes time.
In my humble opinion, if you are looking for a tough, comfortable to wear quartz dive watch with lots of extra features short of a dive computer, you would be hard pressed to get a nicer watch. Plus it is just darn cool.
The Aquamount joins my 20th Anniversary Aqualand, Orca, Ti EcoZilla and Seiko Tuna in my big quartz divers' watch box.