Casio is famous for its rugged G-Shock watches, but its sleek Oceanus timepieces are packed with tech wizardry and styled so they feel right at home on formal occasions.
And its latest model is here.
The new Oceanus OCW-G1000 is the world's first hybrid watch in a full-metal case, according to Casio. It uses a hybrid system of radio wave time-calibration signals and Global Positioning System (GPS) signals for accurate timekeeping.
For regular globetrotters who habitually traverse time zones, this is heavensent as the watch changes the time and date to fit the correct time zone automatically.
The OCW-G1000 divides the Earth's surface into 2.6 billion data points, each 500m by 500m. Each data point contains time zone information, daylight savings information and availability of time-calibration signals.
The signal towers are sited in the United States, Britain, Germany, Japan and China, so getting the radio signals in some places may be iffy. It is much easier to get GPS signals anywhere.
The Oceanus comes with Casio's Tough Solar high-capacity solar-charging system. It takes 27 hours of direct light on the solar panel on the watch face to charge it from zero to 100 per cent, said Casio. A full charge should last seven months. However, just 8 minutes under direct sunlight will keep it going for a whole day.
The OCW-G1000 is available in silver/blue, black/black and black/orange. We reviewed the all-black version.
Regardless of the model you choose, the OCW-G1000 is one handsome and elegant timepiece that suits any occasion.
It has a very thin bezel with a dial that has all the major cities and time zones marked on it. Markers and sub-dial rings are three-dimensional and, thus, easier to read.
A dual-curved sapphire glass protects the watch face. An anti- reflective coating on both sides makes for better visibility. On the watch face are three sub-dials for World Time showing the time in another city, date/mode indicator and AM/PM indicator.
On the right side of the case are two buttons with the crown in the middle. On the opposite side, there is only a single button.
Both watch case and band are titanium and feel really smooth on the skin. Casio's Sallaz polishing gives it a more classy polished stainless steel look. It looks much heavier than it actually is.
The slope of the watch lug is designed to wrap naturally around the wrist. It feels really comfortable even with prolonged wear, for example, on a long-haul flight.
The watch should automatically receive GPS or radio (if available) signals and adjust the time on its own when in a new time zone, but I have yet to test this out.
I guess I was just too impatient. It is much faster to get to an open area with direct line of sight to the sky, and then hold down the bottom right button for 3 seconds to reset.
Casio said it takes from 30 seconds to 13 minutes to secure a GPS fix. In fact, the review unit took just 55 seconds to get the GPS information and the hour and minute hands automatically moved to the correct positions.
In the event you are stuck in the bowels of an airport or somewhere else where you cannot receive a GPS signal, you can do it manually.
To do so, pull the crown out till you hear a second click. You will see the second hand moving to indicate the current time zone (on the bezel). For example, if you had just landed in Los Angeles, turn the crown to move the second hand to point at "LAX" on the dial.
You can set a second time zone on the World Time sub-dial to show a different city's time. Pull the crown out until you hear the first click, repeat the steps above.
For travelling business executives who need to keep track of the time back home, this feature is great.
The Oceanus is not a G-Shock, so do not expect it to be as hardy and rugged. Certainly, you should avoid testing this by dropping it. But it is water-resistant down to 100m.
Undoubtedly expensive, but considering the superb workmanship and its marvellous technology, the Casio Oceanus OCW-G1000 is one exquisite timepiece for the road warrior who does not want to leave style behind.
This article was first published on June 10, 2015.
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