I thought I would write up a quick review of my new AWG100. I'm sure most of my observations aren't unique, but I figured why not?
First off, I've been wearing a GW500A for several years now, so most of my perspective is going to come from being used to an all digital timepiece.
Just to cover the technical aspects of the watch, some of the important features are:
- Multi-Band Atomic Timekeeping
- Solar Powered
- Hourly Time Signal
- Auto-Calendar Pre-programmed until the Year 2099
- Daily Alarm
- LED Light with Afterglow
- Power Saving Function
- Water Resistant up to 200 meter
- 12/24-Hour Formats
- World Time 29 Time Zones, 48 Cities
- 60 Minute Count Down Timer
- Stopwatch 1/100 Second
Now for some opinions/observations about my AWG100:
- Lots of watch for the money
- Solar/Atomic combo makes for zero maintenance
- Classic look of an analog watch with bonus digital functionality
- Feels very lightweight
- Not overly large*
- LED Light not Auto, you have to push a button (Solar power means I should be able to use my light with reckless abandon!)
- Digital features useless without sufficient ambient light (the LED does not illuminate the digital windows)
- Band feels somewhat cheap/thin
- Just one daily alarm
- Digital window for date isn't easy to read at a glance
- Not overly large*
Most of my criticisms are fairly insignificant and I was aware of most of them before I purchased the watch. The only thing that I wasn't aware of was the lack of digital illumination at night and that was something that never occurred to me to think about. The LED lights up the surface of the face from the bottom and it's easy to tell the time, but there is no backlight for the digital screens, so you basically can't see them at all in the dark. The AWG100 does feel somewhat small, which I think is both good and bad (hence my *). I usually don't take my watch off for anything, so having a watch that isn't all that bulky on my wrist means that I don't have it getting hung up on stuff or otherwise getting in the way. The downside of that is it does look like it should be a little larger to me; not much, but I think it would look better if it were larger. My wrist is just over 7.5" so I don't really consider my wrist overly large or small.
Overall I think that the AWG100 is a really nice watch, especially considering the very affordable cost of ownership. There are other Ana/Dig watches that address some, or maybe all, of my nitpicks but you don't really see them in the price range that you can typically find the AWG100 in. If it holds up to daily use as well as my older G-Shock has, and I see no reason why it won't, I will consider it well worth the money spent.