Casio B650WD review
Originally, there was the F-91W, released in 1991. After that came the A158 which uses the same module as the F-91W. After a few years the F105W and A168 are released with the better "ElectroLuminescent" night light (Casio's version of Indiglo.) Fast-forward several more years later and the F108 model is released, which is similar to the F-91W, but with modernized larger display, thicker digit segments and while having an LED night light is much better than the original.
Fast-forward again to 2017 and two new models appear. The W217H and very recently at the time I write this the B650WD.
The W217H and B650WD are the only models released that are what I consider to be true spiritual successors to the F-91W and A158. Both have identical functionality and similar styling that made the '90s originals so good to begin with.
The metal bracelet on the B650WD is a hair-puller, and the light button is a bit stiff.
Those are the only two complaints I have. And I can eliminate one of those complaints just by getting a W217H model, should I choose to get one later.
Face is very easy to read.
Night light is vastly superior to the F-91W/A158. While not EL, the amber light easily lights up the entire display for really easy night reading.
Full 20-second alarm is carried over from the original F-91W/A158. Most Casio digital timepieces only have a 10-second alarm.
Beep tone is about the same volume as the F-91W/A158. It can be heard without a problem.
Buttons are larger compared to the '90s originals and easier to press.
Case is slightly heavier but fits much better on the wrist. The larger design allows the watch to lay more flatly, which is a very welcome thing. The lugs are also angled downward which further helps the watch to have such a great fit.
Overall design is more clean. Compared to the A158, several printed words have been removed. "LITHIUM" is gone, "12-24H" is gone and "WR" is gone. Two printed words have been added, "ILLUMINATOR" and "5 BAR" at the bottom, but done so in a way that if I didn't tell you about them, you probably wouldn't even have noticed (that's a good thing.)
Has a battery life claimed to be 7 years.
Better than the original?
Technically, yes, the B650WD is better than the A158...
...but the A158 still has something the B650WD doesn't have, and that's nostalgia factor.
The F-91W and A158 have a design that's almost 27 years old. I'm happy Casio still makes these watches and honestly hope they never stop making them.
I'd say just own both since they're cheap enough.
Unintentional '80s nostalgia
An unintentional peculiarity about the B650WD and only that model is that it looks something straight out of the early '80s. More specifically, "what people thought was a futuristic look in the 1980s."
A futuristic '80s appearance is basically an industrial design that's square, silver and shiny. And that's exactly what the B650WD is.
When I catch a reflection of me wearing this watch in a mirror, I genuinely do get that future-'80s style vibe from it.
Is this good? Yes, absolutely. Most inexpensive (and even a few expensive) digital watches have terrible "gamer" styling while the B650WD is much more elegant in its look.
For a cheap digital, the B650WD model might arguably be the best looking you can get for the price. I'm happy to own mine.