By Cori Jones
By Cori Jones
In 1983 Casio introduced a new line of watches with a television commercial that featured a hockey player smacking a watch through a goal to demonstrate its toughness. That watch was the first G-Shock and the start of a long line of ultra tough watches built to appeal to the sports market. All G-Shock watches come with up to 200m water resistance, low temperature resistance, and shock resistant housing which makes them great for active outdoor use. The first G-Shock with an Altimeter is the Riseman, which originally came out in 1997.
The Riseman has proven its toughness—I've worn it everywhere from hiking in the backcountry to working on my car and it doesn't even have the slightest scratch. The Riseman is however a very large watch it got in the way more than a few times. The large case has a plastic brace that extends part way around both sides of the wrist to keep the watch from moving or spinning around. At first this brace made my wrist sore, however it only took a few days to get used to it and after that I was glad to have that feature. Even though the Watch is huge the screen is quite small, and the only data that can be easily seen at a glance is the time. For all the other information you have to take a closer look.
The Riseman's altimeter is only good up to 19,680 ft and only displays in 20 ft increments. However the altimeter has many recording, tracking, and altitude alarm features and it seemed to stay accurate throughout the test. It records the altitude every five seconds for the first three minutes after the mode is activated and every two minutes after that. It also has a recall mode where you can view readings that you have recorded as well as the life time max elevation that is automatically recorded.
Another cool feature is a barometric trend indicator, which like the altimeter takes measurements every five seconds for the first three minutes after you switch to that mode and every 2 hours the rest of the time. Rounding out the Riseman's features list is a thermometer, alarm, and stop watch.
A major drawback of the Riseman is the cost, a whopping $250 MSR. Another negative was the manual. It was difficult to read so it took me awhile to figure out all the features of the watch, let alone how to use them.
So if you are super rough on your watches and want one that is virtually indestructible and you are willing to deal with a few limitations like the smaller screen and the not super easy to under stand manual, you should get a G-Shock Riseman.
Cori Jones is a new contributor for GearReview.com specializing in snowboarding and mountain biking. He can usually be found at the local resorts throwing big air in the winter and screaming downhill in the summer.