While G-Shock continues to reign supreme in the worlds of fashion and utility (especially in light of the model’s 35th anniversary this year), Casio’s Edifice line is where the brand has continually experimented with highly-accessible prices combined with high-tech gadgetry such as Bluetooth connectivity. Last week, the Japanese brand surprised its global following with 10 new watches within the Edifice collection that feature different takes on a chronograph with Casio’s solar-panel-powered movements. The best part? Each new watch is priced at or under $220.
While there are a few distinct differences in the materials used and the overall design of each timepiece, there are some consistent details that remain the same throughout each new watch. All ten chronographs are water resistant to 100 meters, feature a one-second stopwatch, and include other user-friendly complications such as a date and a battery-level indicator. Each watch’s solar panel is located underneath its inset dial allowing it to be charged in low and fluorescent light as well daylight.
The 10 new models can be identified as followed: EQS900DB-1AV/2AV, EQS900CL-1AV, EQS600DB-1A4/1A9, EFSS500DB-1AV/1BV, and EFSS510D-1AV/2AV/7AV.
The two EQS900DB (1AV and 2AV) are variants of the same model in the Solar Collection (EQS = Solar Collection in Casio lingo). The 1AV version features black and gray accents; the 2AV, blue and black. Both models feature a dash of high-speed potency with a new carbon dial that utilizes the same carbon fiber found throughout Formula One racing. The subdial configuration is set in the 6, 9, and 12 o’clock positions with small seconds, a 30-minute counter, and a 24-hour subdial set in each respective spot. Caressing the small seconds at 6 o’clock is a battery-level-indicator that will quickly let you know when your watch needs some sun. Finally, the date window makes the top edge of the 4 o’clock index its resting place.
The EQS900CL-1AV includes the same layout and integrated-carbon dial but design-wise has a distinct maximalist flair with gold-colored indexes and hour and minute hands, plus additional red accents on the power reserve, chronograph seconds hand, and 30-minute hand.
All three of the new EQS900 models are priced at $170. (The case size is not yet confirmed for these three models but we’ll update the article once it has been.)
Both the EQS600DB-1A4/1A9 watches feature a similar 6, 9, and 12 o’clock dial layout as the EQS900 series. The big difference here is the presence of enhanced three-dimensional markers and scales surrounding the various subdials plus the case size of 49 mm. The 1AF version has a dark red, almost burgundy, hue on the dial while the 1A9 has an interesting yellow mustard tone. The date window is moved horizontally to 3 o’clock and the power indicator remains tucked in the same corner to the left of the small seconds. One small note that should make a big difference in the minds of detail-oriented collectors is the four different hand styles found throughout the various subdials. The heavy counterweight found on the 30-minute subdial, in particular, is memorable. Both EQS600DB timepieces are priced at $200.
Casio kept the same dial configuration for the EFSS500DB-1AV/1BV models but added a sapphire crystal to the watch for additional protection. The size stays at 49 mm and the date window remains at 3 o’clock but the attractive counterweight has been moved from the watch’s 30-minute subdial to the small seconds at 6 o’clock. There’s the option of either gray or gold accents for the indexes and hands but the real difference maker is the presence of four screws on the bezel, an uncharacteristic move for the Japanese brand that adds some old-school charm to the watch’s appearance. Both models are priced at $220.
Finally, the EFSS510D-1AV/2AV/7AV timepieces offer the most sporty and traditional look of all ten watches. Once again, the subdials are set at the 6, 9, and 12 o’clock positions but this time are slightly smaller and more subdued with subtle three-dimensional protrusions marking the scales. The flat bezel and choice to go with Obelisque hour and minute hands almost permits a dive watch comparison but, alas, the bezel is static. All three color options — dark blue, silver-white, and black — are quite attractive. The three EFSS510D-1AV/2AV/7AV variants are sized at 46 mm and are priced at $170.