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Casio PRW-6000Y Review

This solar-powered altimeter watch is the best option for those looking for limitless battery life and great durability.
Casio PRWS6000Y-1A available on manu 1/20/17
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Price:  $600 List | $499.90 at Amazon
Pros:  Solar-powered, durable carbon fiber strap, quality non-reflective mineral glass, accurate, atomic clock
Cons:  Steep learning curve, archaic features, expensive
Manufacturer:   Casio
By Amber King and Ben Applebaum-Bauch  ⋅  Dec 6, 2018
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71
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#6 of 13
  • Altimeter Accuracy - 30% 7
  • Battery Life - 20% 10
  • User experience - 20% 5
  • Features - 15% 5
  • Comfort and Fit - 15% 8

Our Verdict

The Casio PRW-6000Y is a multi-function watch that is built to last. The triple sensor can provide data on altitude, barometric pressure, and temperature. It also features a basic compass and an atomic clock. The solar-powered battery stands out from the rest, making it one of the most reliable watches that we tested. We love the durable strap, featuring a carbon-fiber insert. It's accurate and relatively easy to use with practice. However, this model has a steep learning curve. Unlike many of the other models, we needed the user's manual to figure out how to access many of the features. We like the unique analog-digital display, but think that a lot of the functions are dated. For example, the compass is not tilt-compensated like most of the other watches tested, and the graphs are low-quality. That said, it does track weather patterns, store trips, and provide the essential functions of any great altimeter watch. Overall, it's a decent option if you are in the market for something that is tough, reliable, and old-school.


Compare to Similar Products

 
Casio PRWS6000Y-1A available on manu 1/20/17
This Product
Casio PRW-6000Y
Awards  Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award  Best Buy Award 
Price $499.90 at Amazon$599.99 at Amazon$399.99 at REI
Compare at 2 sellers
$419.30 at Amazon$245.00 at Amazon
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Pros Solar-powered, durable carbon fiber strap, quality non-reflective mineral glass, accurate, atomic clockGreat battery life, accurate tracking, easy to useTracks many activities, easy to use, stylish, comfortableTouch screen, many features, consistent altimeter, clear graphsLong battery life, durable aluminum finish, great fit, precise, easy-to-use interface
Cons Steep learning curve, archaic features, expensiveExpensive, slightly bulkyShorter battery life, less accurate GPSShort battery life, inaccurate step counterAltitude and barometric graphs are sub-par, no GPS, lag on button presses
Bottom Line This solar-powered altimeter watch is the best option for those looking for limitless battery life and great durability.This watch is your ultimate mountain sport training tool.This altimeter watch is loaded with features for the mountain athlete.This is an all-star watch for those who keep to the front country.This Best Buy Award winner is the best option for those looking for a classic altimeter watch at an affordable price.
Rating Categories Casio PRW-6000Y Coros Vertix Garmin Forerunner 935 Suunto 9 Baro Suunto Core Alu
Altimeter Accuracy (30%)
10
0
7
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
8
10
0
8
Battery Life (20%)
10
0
10
10
0
9
10
0
7
10
0
3
10
0
9
User Experience (20%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
10
10
0
6
Features (15%)
10
0
5
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
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6
Comfort And Fit (15%)
10
0
8
10
0
9
10
0
9
10
0
8
10
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7
Specs Casio PRW-6000Y Coros Vertix Garmin Forerunner... Suunto 9 Baro Suunto Core Alu
GPS? No Yes Yes Yes No
Dimensions (Inches) 2.28 x 2.05 x .50” 1.85 x 1.85 x .61" 1.85 x 1.85 x .55 2.03 x 2.03 x 0.67 " 1.93 x 1.93 x 0.57”
Type of Battery Solar, rechargeable battery Rechargeable lithium ion battery Rechargable lithium ion battery Rechargable lithium ion battery Watch battery
Battery Life (w/o GPS) 6 months (no sun exposure), continuosly w/ sun exposure 45 days 2 weeks 14 days 12 months
Battery Life w/ GPS on No GPS 60hrs up to 24 hrs regular GPS, up to 60 hrs in Ultratrac w/o hr tracking 7 days No GPS
Altitude Range -2,300 - 32,800 ft (-700 m - 10,000m) None provided None provided -500 - 9999 m -500 - 9000 m
Altitidue differential? Yes None provided Yes Yes Yes
Elevation interval 1m/5ft None provided 1m/3ft 1ft 1m/3ft
Barometer Yes, barometric graph Yes, barometric graph Yes, barometric graph Yes Yes
Barometric Recording Interval & Time (for the graph) Every two minutes (shows changes) Every 10 min, 24 hours Every 30 minutes, 24 hours 10 seconds, 24 hours Every 30 minutes, 24 hours
Barometric Pressure Range 260 - 1,100 hPa (7.65 - 32.45 inHg) None provided 920 - 1,080 hPa (27.13 - 31.85 inHg) Information pending 920 - 1,080 hPa (27.13 - 31.85 inHg)
Storm Alert Alarm? Yes No No Yes Yes
Compass Yes, not tilt adjustable Yes Yes Yes, tilt adjustable None
Time Features Analog/Digital, atomic timekeeper, radio calibration signals, world time (29 time zones) Digital, stopwatch, timer Digital (customizable faces), stop watch, GPS time, countdown timer Digital (customizable faces), stop watch, GPS time, countdown timer Digital, dual world times, stopwatch, countdown timer
Time Alarm 5 daily alarms Yes, 10 daily alarms Yes, 10 daily alarms Yes Yes
Thermometer Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Temperature Resistance Range Low: -10C/14F -4 to 140F (-20 to 60C) -20° C to +60° C (-4F - 140F) -20° C to +60° C -20° C to +60° C (-4F - 140F)
Water Resistance Yes, 100 meters Yes, 150 meters Yes, 50 meters Yes, 100 meters Yes, 100 meters
Interchangeable straps? Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Types of bands and material Plastic, carbon fiber insert Silicone Silicone (leather options, as well) Silicone Silicone
Bluetooth connection? No Yes Yes Yes No
GPS, GLONASS, both? No GPS Both Both GPS No GPS
Apps n/a Yes, Coros app Garmin Connect Suunto MovesCount n/a
Charging Type Solar charged battery specialized cord Specialized cord Specialized cord Battery
Warranty Limited Warranty Period (1 year) Limited Warranty Period (2 years) Limited Warranty Period (1 year) Limited Warranty Period (2 years) Limited Warranty Period (2 years)
Other Cool Features Analog/Digital display sunrise/sunset, sleep tracking, VO2 max sunrise/sunset, sleep tracking, VO2 max, etc. Activity monitoring, heart rate monitor, notifications, moon phases, points of interest, sleep tracking sunrise/sunset

Our Analysis and Test Results

The PRW-6000Y has a built-in solar panel and simple functions. It's reliable and perfect for extended missions.

Performance Comparison


Steeeerrreeecccchhhh! Hiking over Dominguez Canyon in Colorado proves to be a great way to reconnect to nature. Oh! The PRW-6000Y accompanies us on our mission of exploration.
Steeeerrreeecccchhhh! Hiking over Dominguez Canyon in Colorado proves to be a great way to reconnect to nature. Oh! The PRW-6000Y accompanies us on our mission of exploration.

Altimeter Accuracy


After walking, running, and hiking over 10,000 feet of vertical terrain, we learned that this was one of the most accurate watches that we tested. It was never more than 100 feet off the actual altitude (with calibrations). In the world of altimeter watches, this is incredibly accurate.

Like all watches, make sure to perform regular daily calibrations at known altitudes to ensure the accuracy of the altimeter — especially on long adventures.

The only time it lost its accuracy was when we didn't calibrate it properly before a trip, or when the weather changed drastically (which is also typical of altimeter watches). In general, you can rely on the altimeter readings with this Casio. That said, it didn't score super high in this metric because the increments are 1m/5 ft. Most high-end altimeter watches like the Suunto Traverse have an altimeter increment of 1m/3ft.

Battery Life



Earning top marks in this category, this solar-powered Casio is among the longest-lasting watches tested (along with some of its other Casio companions). You won't have to worry about running out of juice on the trail — even if you are gone for months.

Throughout our three-month testing period, we didn't have to formally charge it once. Depending on the type of light used to charge (i.e., direct sunlight, indirect sunlight, or fluorescent lights), this solar-powered watch can take anywhere from just three to six hours to charge from a dead battery. For those in search of a watch that won't lose battery life during an adventure that lasts more than a week, this is your best option. Taking a simple walk outdoors will keep it charged and ready to go.

User Experience



Of all the watches tested, this was one of the most difficult to figure out. We couldn't even figure out how to set the time, look at a barometric reading, or determine the altitude without reviewing the user's manual. This watch has the steepest learning curve, but once we figured it out, it was easy to use. If you're looking for an easier-to-use option, check out the Suunto 9 Baro.

The liquid crystal display is durable, clear, and crisp. We love that there is little to no reflection, regardless of the light. That said, the watch face isn't as large as the other watches tested and the box that provides a digital readout of altitude, pressure, and other features is tiny.

The LCD light is also pretty poor. It doesn't last long enough or provides a lot of light to see the entire face of the watch during the night (only one and three-second options). If you're looking for a watch with incredible display quality, check out the Garmin Fenix 5x Plus Sapphire or Suunto 9 Baro.

Features



The PRW-6000Y is a quality watch that offers some great features. However, they are a little more basic than other watches that we tested, and there aren't nearly as many as comparably priced models like the Suunto 9 Baro. That said, it does perform the basic functions of any quality altimeter watch. It has a good altimeter-barometer, compass, temperature gauge, timekeeper, and data log.

This Casio comes with all the basic features of a great altimeter watch: barometer  altimeter  timekeeper  and compass.
This Casio comes with all the basic features of a great altimeter watch: barometer, altimeter, timekeeper, and compass.

Altimeter and Barometer



The alti-barometer allows you to view your altitude and the barometric pressure for your current location. You can record logs of any uphill (or downhill) activity, and determine an altitude differential between two areas. It automatically logs your maximum and minimum altitude, while data recall allows you to see up to 30 logs that you have saved. The barometer can be used to track weather trends and turn on storm alerts for severe changes in barometric pressure. It has poor graphs for both barometric pressure and altitude. They are small, hard to see and don't contain a whole lot of information. The trend line is also extremely short. Even though it still allows you to track trends in altitude and pressure, the graphs featured in other battery-powered watches like the Suunto Core Alu are much better.

The barometric reading on the PRW-6000Y
The barometric reading on the PRW-6000Y

Compass



The compass on this watch is functional but fairly archaic in comparison to the rest of the watches tested. It allows you to take a current bearing to determine where you need to go (with the use of a topographical map).
Map reading skills and experience are required to determine your location using this watch.
A bi-directional calibration is required before each use, and manual magnetic declination should be set appropriately. Also, it makes you keep your wrist horizontal for a proper reading, unlike most of the other watches that we tested which are tilt-compensated.

Time Keeper



This watch features an atomic, radio controlled watch with both a digital and analog display. It has a world clock, complete with 29 different time zones, five alarms, a stopwatch, and countdown function. The world clock is helpful to have. However, a GPS-enabled watch that can update the time automatically is more convenient when traveling.

A look at all the displays tested. From top left to right: Casio SRW300HB  Casio PRW-6000Y  Garmin Fenix 3. From bottom left to right: Suunto Core Alu  Suunto Ambit3 Peak  Suunto Traverse
A look at all the displays tested. From top left to right: Casio SRW300HB, Casio PRW-6000Y, Garmin Fenix 3. From bottom left to right: Suunto Core Alu, Suunto Ambit3 Peak, Suunto Traverse

Comfort and Fit


This watch stands out for its ergonomic fit and lightweight. It often feels like you weren't wearing anything at all.

We also love its durable carbon-fiber wrist strap that is bound to last a long, long time. When comparing it to our top contender, the Suunto Ambit3 Peak, we noticed that this watch is lighter, with a slimmer profile. However, we liked the Ambit3 Peak better because of its longer straps (that fit better over layers) and thicker strap material. Several Suunto watches are even more comfortable though, as is the Garmin Fenix 5x Plus Sapphire.

It fits easily over and under jackets as well.
It fits easily over and under jackets as well.

Value



This watch doesn't have a whole lot of value. It comes with a super high price and not a whole lot of features. However, it is highly durable. We love the built-in solar panel, but the features and ease of use of the watch don't match the price. Even though this piece of technology provides decent accuracy and simple features, it is fairly outdated in function performance and doesn't include any bells or whistles that other (less expensive) watches have.

Take it day hiking  backpacking  or on multi-month missions. The sky's the limit! It's just not a very good fitness tracker like all the GPS watches we tested.
Take it day hiking, backpacking, or on multi-month missions. The sky's the limit! It's just not a very good fitness tracker like all the GPS watches we tested.

Conclusion



This Casio is one of the most reliable watches tested in this review. The solar-powered functionality coupled with durable features makes it a perfect compadre for extended missions in remote territories. However, it lacks fancy features, and the price is high for what it provides.


Amber King and Ben Applebaum-Bauch