Casio Pro Trek PRW3000 ABC Watches

ABC Watches for the Outdoorsman

Last updated on June 3rd, 2024 at 06:39 am

Watches are one of the few pieces of gear that is both functional and adorned. For the outdoorsman, an ABC watch should be highly considere d as the jewelry of choice. The “ABC” in ABC watches stands for Altimeter, Barometer, Compass.

For me, I find the altimeter a must-have for hunting out west. Based on the time of the year, I can take readings on where I’m seeing deer and make note of other canyons that may also have deer. This helps me plan on scouting areas. The barometer on most ABC watches, like my Pro Trek, will alert me to dramatic changes in pressure that could signal a storm coming in. Lastly, the compass is well, a compass. If you had an analog display, you could use the sun to navigate with your watch, but having a compass built in to an ABC watch is very convenient.  Here are some of the most popular ABC watches at a reasonable price point. Due to the reasonable price point, I’m avoiding listing GPS watches.

What is an ABC watch?

The “ABC” in ABC watch stands for Altimeter, Barometer, and Compass. These watches have 3 sensors, one for each of these functions that allow the wearer to measure altitude, barometric pressure for sporadic weather changes, and directions.

Who makes the best ABC watches?

Casio, Garmin, and Suunto are the major players for ABC watches with altimeter, barometer, and compass sensors. Coros is a newcomer to the space worth checking out

Best ABC Watches under $300

Casio ABC Watches

Casio is THE name in the ABC watch game. They have created smaller sensors and have expanded their Pathfinder line into multiple models for every use case.

These are the Casio ABC watches worth checking out

The Casio PRT B50 includes a 4th sensor for step counting and Bluetooth connectivity

Casio Pro Trek PRW ABC Watch

This is the watch I own. Casio’s Pro Trek PRW3500 is a solar powered ABC watch that is reasonable in size. The diameter of the watch isn’t too big for smaller wrists and wears well. Aside from the ABC functions, the watch is on auto-update, includes multi-frequency time keeping with atomic world time, water resistant to 100M, and includes other functions you’d expect out of a Casio digital. The silicon band can be replaced with other colors, making this my pick for ABC watches. The PRW line can also be had with an analog display in the PRW6500 model.

After 3 or 4 years of use, the watch I have has signs of wear along the bezel and has a crack on the mineral crystal. However, I put my gear through use and likely banged it under the hood of my car at some point. It still works fine and I still take it underwater.

Casio Pro Trek PRG and PRW Differences

What the PRG-600 lacks compared to the Pro Trek PRW is the multi-band 6 automatic time keeping updates. Additionally, the PRG series features resin cases which are less expensive to manufacture, but in my opinion, more rugged.

If I knew this existed when I was shopping, I’d probably go here. The green camo looks interesting to me and the resin case would fit well with my style. This Pro Trek shares the same sensors across the entire lineup.

What is Casio’s PRT 4-Sensor ABC Watch?

If I’m buying a watch today, it’s the Casio Pro Trek PRT B-50. No doubt. This watch is a 4-sensor watch, which includes the ABC functionality in the first 3 sensors. The 4th sensor is an accelerometer which measures step count. Additionally, there’s Bluetooth which allows your watch to get updates from your phone. This pretty much renders the need for multi-frequency and automatic time updates useless. This watch subscribes to your phone to do the heavy lifting.

Casio Pathfinder Series ABC Watches (Twin Sensor)

If you don’t care about altimeter or barometer, you can save a few bucks by going with the Pathfinder series of watches that includes the twin-sensor. The two measurements on these watches are direction and temperature. Also durable, the Pathfinder has a few additional features that the Pro Trek doesn’t have. There is an option to auto illuminate the watch face by tilting the wrist. This seems pretty useful in low-light situations.

Suunto ABC Watches

Suunto Core

I can’t mention the Pro Trek without mentioning Suunto’s Core ABC watch. Similar to the Pro Trek, but different. The Suunto is known for a more detailed display and better altimeter readings, but the Pro Trek is known for better durability. The Suunto Core sports a 49-mm case.

The Suunto Core in All Black

A feature unique to the Suunto Core is the depth meter. As a waterman who loves fishing with a pole spear, this is important to me, but the water resistance rating isn’t made for any real depth diving. Because of the 10-meter/30-foot limit, the Suunto Core’s depth meter is marketed as a snorkeling depth sensor and not a scuba depth sensor. However, 30-feet dives should cover 80-90% of spearfisherman dives.

 Garmin ABC Watches

I hesitated to add Garmin to this list, even though they’re one of the biggest names in GPS smart watches. While this one is affordable and in price range, the battery life is that of a smart watch. However, the GPS functionality is the tradeoff that may be worth it for some people.

With GPS off, the watch is advertised at a 21-day battery life.

The Garmin Impact has a 21-day battery in non-GPS mode, 20-hours in GPS mode

Which ABC Watch is Right For You?

These watches listed are the most popular ABC watches in the reasonably priced category. You can find some nicer pieces for more money, but at that point, you’re looking at diminishing returns.

For me, as an adventurer, I’d recommend the Pro Trek PRT as a sub-$300 watch that includes both the ABC function as well as a few smart watch extras.

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