Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?
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    Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Does anyone know what G-Shock models, if any, support the new phase modulated time code (which apparently improves performance) that was added to the legacy WWVB time signal? See here for more info under "Enhanced WWVB Broadcast Format Change": NIST Radio Station WWVB

    I'm hoping the GWM-5610 in particular supports it as I was just about to buy it. I just emailed Casio but I hoped someone here might already know the answer.

  2. #2
    lvt
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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Casio (and other manufacturers) probably won't make any change to their current hardware specs because they don't have any model exclusive to the US.

    Anh as stated on the web page, the enhancement won't affect devices that don't support it.
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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    According to the G-Shock wiki at List of Every G-Shock Model - G-Shock Wiki | casio watch resources the GW-M5610 was released in 2010, two years before that new enhancement.

    Quote Originally Posted by lvt View Post
    Casio (and other manufacturers) probably won't make any change to their current hardware specs because they don't have any model exclusive to the US.
    Exactly -- Casio and other companies have to "play down to" the lowest common denominator -- if they make a watch that takes advantage of the latest technology in the US, would it also be able to work with the other transmitters? Casio has gone from "one band" to "two band" to "5 band" and "6 band" watches, so it's unlikely they want to start over again with another "US only" version.
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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike K View Post
    Exactly -- Casio and other companies have to "play down to" the lowest common denominator -- if they make a watch that takes advantage of the latest technology in the US, would it also be able to work with the other transmitters? Casio has gone from "one band" to "two band" to "5 band" and "6 band" watches, so it's unlikely they want to start over again with another "US only" version.
    From what I gather adding support for the new phase modulated time code wouldn't negatively effect anything, or require a US only version either.

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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Go ahead and get whichever 5610 you like as it will probably be a long wait for ANY wrist watch in this price range to use the new PM code. By then your 5610 will still be faithfully keeping accurate time using the AM code.

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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Quote Originally Posted by Watch.Er View Post
    From what I gather adding support for the new phase modulated time code wouldn't negatively effect anything, or require a US only version either.
    From the link you provided, the new code has been added to the old signal, and old devices still work with the new signal.

    That doesn't necessarily mean that the reverse is true, or that a new device designed to work with the new signal WILL also work with the old signal.

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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike K View Post
    From the link you provided, the new code has been added to the old signal, and old devices still work with the new signal.

    That doesn't necessarily mean that the reverse is true, or that a new device designed to work with the new signal WILL also work with the old signal.
    You aren't confusing yourself again, are you Mike? Many, many devices support multiple operating modes. Think of the old (pre-broadband) modem mating call for example or the (blessedly silent) dance that current WiFi devices perform. Both are examples where multi-mode devices explore their connection environment in order to establish the highest speed possible with the most secure data encryption or best possible error-correction. If the latest and greatest isn't available, smart gizmos are perfectly satisfied to failover to a less capable, but still serviceable communication mode. I would imagine PM watches would do the same: test for PM availability and if not available, failover to AM signal processing. No fuss, no muss. Relax, Mike - it's all good!
    Last edited by tyrenfroe; March 15th, 2014 at 06:31.

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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Quote Originally Posted by tyrenfroe View Post
    You aren't confusing yourself again, are you Mike? Many, many devices support multiple operating modes.
    I wondered and thought about that too, but as we saw before, the programming in the first (and current) groups of atomic watches hasn't been the greatest -- if we can identify the flaws in the first two versions and provide theoretical "fixes," why couldn't Casio's engineers do the same and fix it?

    If the watch manufacturers can produce "smarter" watches with multiple modes that can use either signal, that would be ideal, but I have to wonder IF they'll actually be able to do it.

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    lvt
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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Just buy whatever model you want, I think this enhancement is for more advanced devices, they aren't made it specifically for wristwatches.
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    Re: Atomic clock (WWVB) new phase modulation support?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike K View Post

    ...the programming in the first (and current) groups of atomic watches hasn't been the greatest
    ...if we can identify the flaws ... and provide theoretical "fixes," why couldn't Casio's engineers do the same and fix it?
    ..."smarter" watches with multiple modes ... would be ideal, but I have to wonder IF they'll actually be able to do it.
    You're being generous with the programming quality - I'd say it sucks! It's marginally better now than it used to be, but that's still not saying much.

    As far as the engineers getting off their butts and coding the DST changeovers, that should be a trivial programming exercise. Additionally, if Casio hasn't already burned a trillion firmware modules, the new code SHOULD be able to be slipstreamed into the company's current production. That is, since user operations or displays are not changed in any way, there's really no need to change retailer or user documentation (a HUGE problem in changing things, believe it or not!) or to even inform users that anything has changed at all. Just burn the new code into blank firmware modules and ship 'em out!

    All Casio needs to get going on this project is a reason to do so. Its customers are that reason. We should be bitching and moaning about the inadequate programming in the company's existing RC products and demand better. Unfortunately, until the buying public begins to buy RC watches in large numbers (99.999% don't even know the capability exists), there's no real market competition and thus little of the need to retain/attract customers that forces product innovation. Salespeople in department stores know zip about the hundreds of watches they have for sale. For $10/hr, I'm not sure I'd bust my butt learning everything about them either! In the AD and jewelry shop channels, I think the biggies are protecting their lucrative mechanical and quartz markets, established over many years. They are not at all anxious to trade the thousand dollar units they sell currently for the couple hundred they'd be able to get for generic RC units in a truly competitive market. Looks like we may be stuck for the foreseeable future.
    Last edited by tyrenfroe; March 15th, 2014 at 06:59.

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