Casio A168 camouflage special edition
To my pleasant surprise, this really is a special edition that delivers.
How it delivers is not so much with the watch itself but rather the packaging.
Before I get into this, there are some Casio collectors that are real sticklers for details. If that sounds like you, the exact model of watch I have is the A168WEC-1EF.
Here's the hangtag to prove it.
Now as far as the functionality of this watch is concerned, if you know the F-91W or the A158 with module 593, you already know this watch. And if you know the regular A168 or the F105W (both of which have the EL nightlight), the A168WEC-1EF is functionally identical to those models.
When I got this watch in the mail, I noticed the package was a bit flat. This immediately disappointed me because I thought the seller did not include the box. But then I got real happy when I opened the package and saw the special teal colored sleeve.
The sleeve is just felt material and nothing more with a stamped silver "CASIO". It's not expensive material by any means, but this is the first time I have ever seen an official Casio sleeve. In the US, Casio watches are never sold like this. Most of the time all you get is a box. Sometimes you get the upscale G-SHOCK tins, but only if you buy a high-priced model.
I purchased this watch direct from a seller in Spain, and this specific EU model (you can see EU on the hangtag) does come delivered in the sleeve.
Yes, I know, it's just a cheap felt sleeve. But it's little things like that which make this model of watch special and separate it from a regular A168 model.
On the back of the watch, Casio does use a different model name for this edition. Instead of A168 there is A168WE.
But of course the main reason to own this watch is for the face.
I do not like the look of the regular A168. Yes, I like "retro" Casio design as much as any other fan of the brand, but I've never cared for the A168's face.
The A168WEC-1EF face obviously has the gray camouflage pattern, but also has a few things removed. Nowhere on the face does it state ELECTROLUMINESCENCE, ILLUMINATOR or WATER RESIST. That text is thankfully gone and makes the watch look far more appealing.
As I said before, the only reason I never bought the A168 before now was because of the styling. This one is styled better.
The gray camouflage pattern works well with the stainless steel bracelet, and I consider the watch best used as an everyday casual timepiece. This wouldn't work with a suit but does work with a t-shirt or polo shirt easily.
The case size of the A168WEC-1EF is also about as good as it gets. Corner-to-corner, the case measures a little over 38mm. To put that in perspective, that's a full 2mm wider than the F-91W, which for all intents and purposes makes this A168 a slightly-larger-than-midsize timepiece.
According to official Casio measurements, the A168WEC is 38.6mm tall x 36.3mm wide x 9.6mm thick. I measured the case myself and yes the measurements match if you include the little "shoulders" where the buttons are.
The only negative I can give this watch is the display panel. While the watch is larger than the F-91W, it's not as readable. This is something most people wouldn't notice, but I notice it. The F-91W has a perfect digital display and it's just a genius design. It might be small but it's ultra-readable and can be read at almost any angle. The A168 however has a display that's slightly countersunk with slightly smaller digit segments. It totally works and there's nothing wrong with it, but the F-91W is still the readability king...
...except where the nightlight is concerned. The EL nightlight of the A168 is spot-on perfect and that is the biggest selling point of the watch, functionally speaking, since the feature set is identical to the F-91W. The EL has perfect luminance with a perfect aqua blue color while the F-91W's backlight is terrible.
I wanted the A168 but hated the style. Then I saw the A168WEC-1EF, its styling suits me and yes, I'm keeping this one.