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Casio ProTrek PRG330 Outdoor Watch Review

Casio ProTrek PRG330 Outdoor Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

When it comes to warmer weather, I like to head outdoors with my family. These days, that often takes the form of going off into the woods for a camping trip, which will then also include some forays along hiking trails. When that’s what you have in mind, you want to think about what sort of watch makes the most sense. Sure, a simple mechanical three-hander (say, a dive watch) will get the job done. If you want something more than just to know the time, you need to get into something like what the Casio ProTrek line has on offer. One of their latest, the Casio ProTrek PRG330, bridges the divide between oversized outdoors-oriented watches and causal, everyday digital watches.

Frankly, that was something I did not quite grasp when I first received word of the launch of the Casio ProTrek PRG330. I mean, yes, they did call out that it had a new smaller case size, but unless you are intimately familiar with a lineup, that may not register. Once I had the Casio ProTrek PRG330 on the wrist, it registered, and in a big way. You see, I have had a handful of different Casio watches cross my review desk this year, and this ProTrek slotted right in with what I had been seeing, albeit with a lot more tech in the resin case. By this, I mean that it looked, felt, and wore like many digital watches. Given that many ProTrek models could rightfully be referred to as pucks on the wrist, I think that it was a move in a smart direction.

Casio ProTrek PRG330 Outdoor Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

Sure, we all know – or perhaps are – the type of person that will have a watch for each specific purpose. Going diving? Got that covered. Headed to the gym? Here’s another watch. Oh, going hiking? Here’s a massive outdoors watch. All different from the daily beater. But what about the guy or gal who is totally fine with having one everyday watch and wants to head for the outdoors? What if their “everyday” is being outdoors? That’s where something like the Casio ProTrek PRG330 comes into play. With its more compact size, it would easily fly under the radar. Which, for someone who is mainly an office-dweller during the week, is quite a good thing.

Casio ProTrek PRG330 Outdoor Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

This by no means that the Casio ProTrek PRG330 is any less-capable of a watch than the ProTreks that came before it. No, on the contrary, it actually has an updated version of the Casio Triple Sensor technology, which brings along all the aspects of the altimeter-barometer-compass (aka, ABC) that we would expect from a ProTrek. Also keeping with the outdoorsy theme is how the watch is powered – solar power, in this case. Yes, it’ll charge under a fluorescent light, but there’s really no substitute for those sunny rays. To help that battery last even longer, the screen will shut itself down when it hasn’t been exposed to light for a bit. Makes you think you’ve got a dead watch the first time you see it, but it pops back to life quickly.

Casio ProTrek PRG330 Outdoor Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

If you ever are curious as to what the battery charge level is at, the watch will tell you, with an indicator down on the lower portion of the dial when you’re in the main timekeeping mode. Oh, and speaking of modes, you’ve got a plethora of them here. There are icons near each button that will tell you what they’re doing. At 2 o’clock, that pusher drops you into the compass; 3 o’clock gets you the barometer and thermometer info, and 4 o’clock gives you your altitude. Down at 6 o’clock you’ve got the battery level indicator (there’s a button hiding there, but it’s for the backlight), 8 o’clock cycles through the other “standard” watch modes, and then 10 o’clock is to trigger adjustments (date or time).

Casio ProTrek PRG330 Outdoor Watch Review Wrist Time Reviews

That just leaves the hump over at the 9 o’clock position on the Casio ProTrek PRG330, and that is where the sensor technology resides. Given its positioning, that does mean you need to have the watch off your wrist to get an accurate temperature reading. This is fairly standard to all watches with a thermometer, as body heat messes with things. Perhaps one day they’ll be able to compensate for that, but today is not that day. The rest of the sensors, though, really aren’t impacted by being on the wrist; nor is any of the other functionality, like viewing sunrise and sunset data, world time, up to 5 daily alarms, a 1/10th second stopwatch, and a countdown timer. So yes, this is certainly a watch that can cover your needs for just about anything you’d need a watch for.

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  • SuperStrapper

    For years now I have been interested in replacing my pag240 for 2 nice-to-have but not need-to-have reasons:
    – sensor resolution. As the ABC sensors are updated they become more accurate. Ibdont use the altimeter critically and the function I do use most are plenty accurate, but the 240 is an old watch and behind several update iterations. It’s nice knowing you have contemporary tech
    -size. It’s not too big for me but it is big. This is always most prevalent in the innocent act of removing a heavy pack. My subconscious pattern always sees the grabby design of the watch graph the strap of my pack on removal and often on strapping up. And the heavier the pack the more it happens.

    Looking at this update I have no doubt the sensors have finer resolution than my 240, and just looking at the case profiles, regardless of size, I can see the design is less grabby. And at $200 there’s virtually no risk. But I’m not sold on it. Getting the nice-to-haves in place is… nice, but the rest of the watch has to be there too. A truly superior function the 240 has that casio all but abandoned since is the duplex display. This is 2 lcd screens that can operate independant of one another concurrently. So using the compass, it just pops up over the time, etc without removing it and still gives a very clear reading, because both screens are the entire size of the dial, and the secondary one is a different colour. On some pathfinder/pro trek watches the compass and other readings are managed in a small sub screen with a little arrow, etc. Not acceptable. Immediately understood readings at a glance are an absolute requirement: this review really should have shown how some of the displays and readings are presented. Yes I can go see them elsewhere but don’t you want people getting their information here?
    Casio’s other ‘connected’ offerings have been impressive, and while I’d love an accurate topo on my wrist, the battery tradeoff just is not worth it. Makes for a great weekend warriors watch but standalone solar capability is not negotiable so it’s nice to see casio continuing down that path. I have no doubt they will sort out solar for a watch like the f20 but until they do I’m not interested. Same reason I’ve never considered a suunto.
    After about 10 years the 240 has never once let me down, and has never needed a battery. The baro trend graph, big compass, and sunrise/set data have all saved my bacon several times. I’ve never been one to fix something not broken, so while I’d like to replace it I won’t do it just because. This is not a fashion or lifestyle item for me, it’s an actual tool with requirements. The updates I would like for it will help get it closer to perfect, but that doesn’t subtract from how useful and capable it is otherwise.

    One day…

    • Playboy Johnny – Team Mariu$

      You lost me at “For years now”

      • SuperStrapper

        For someone who previously mentioned never bothering to read anything I post I’m impressed you got that far.

        I’ll keep trying,

        • Playboy Johnny – Team Mariu$

          Fair enough.

    • Joe

      I’ve had several generations of ProTreks (although my funds have been diverted towards mechanical watches over the last 5y)…
      Totally agree with what you say.
      They’ve helped in the wilderness quite a few times too…and give me the confidence to be in the middle of nowhere (assuming I have a map).
      Whilst mine (and perhaps ProTreks in general) are no longer as cutting edge as they used to be, they’re still great, with very low likelihood of failure, due to their ruggedness and solar power.

      This one is much sleeker than any of mine (apart from the PRG-50), which was quite smooth.
      If they could bring down the size a little, I’d also be looking to replace mine “one day”.
      Then again, size isn’t as much of an issue with these watches, although the “grabbiness” can stop coat sleeves at the watch.

      I’d also give the new Rangeman some consideration (although that definitely needs to come down in size).
      https://www.ablogtowatch.com/casio-g-shock-rangeman-gprb1000-1-gps-watch-review/

    • GaryK

      I have a PAW-2000-1, which also has the duplex display. It’s a great feature for easily reading data like the compass, although it does lower the display contrast somewhat. I wonder if they could come out with a duplex STN display. This should increase the contrast and improve the maximum viewing angle.

  • Will Richmond II

    Why do u so irritatingly show the time display in all of ur photos? I find it hard to believe that u fail in a dozen pics , to show the baro,altitude and compass! Ur review photography poor.Did u ever think we need to view the other face displays to evaluate the watch?

  • Matt Stuehler

    Thoughtful, well-written, well-photographed review – thank you! Here’s an idea for a follow-up… I’m having a hard time figuring out the differences between all of the ProTreks – this model, the PRW-3510, the PRW-3500, the PRW-3100, etc. I’d love to hear what you and the rest of the experts at ABlogToWatch think about the pros and cons of each.

    • GaryK

      The PRW-3000 and 3100 are smaller, like the PRG-330. The PRW-3500 and 3510 are larger, with a rotating compass bezel, and can directly accept 22mm straps. The PRW-3100 and 3510 have STN displays, which have a wider viewing angle. All of the PRW models have MultiBand 6 (atomic timekeeping).

  • Juan-Antonio Garcia

    Used to like ProTek, but they have fallen behind in functions, any $200 offering from Garmin will leave this watch in the dust. I think the only thing going on for ProTeks now, is the rugged look, while Suunto, Polar and Garmin have being more modest in that area, but are loaded with functions and activities (including hiking), very easy to use, plus a desktop or phone site to store and compare activities.

  • egznyc

    One of the key technologies missing here is GPS – which matters to anyone on an outdoor adventure who is interested in tracking time over distance (pace/speed). Having that data matters more to some of us than barometric pressure etc.

  • spiceballs

    No complaints about Casio rugged “movements” but their resin straps are rubbish and costly. None have lasted me more than 18 months, and their s/s replacement offering aren’t that robust either.

  • Gokart Mozart

    To be honest I do not know why watches like this need to be on this website.

    If this is on it what next a Casio calculator watch? And yes I know it was sort of reviewed on Hodinkee recently.

    What is the criteria, will we be seeing reviews of Invicta’s or Daniel Wellington or Sekondas soon?

  • GaryK

    The contrast of my PAW-2000 display is decent in bright, direct light, but it’s definitely lower than the contrast of my other positive display Casios when the two are compared side by side. Odd about the backlight duration on yours, as mine is configurable for 1.5 or 3 seconds (I use the latter). The backlight is noticeably dimmer on the PAW-2000 than the EL backlights on my other Casios, however. I still like the watch a lot, and have no plans to sell it. In many ways it’s better than the current crop of Pro Trek ABC watches. It can use standard 22mm straps, the case is quite thin, and of course it has the duplex display.