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Owning the best budget chronograph watch, Casio MTP4500D
Yes, I bought it. And I'm glad I did.
The first thing I'm going to mention about the Casio MTP4500D are the dimensions since nobody else has posted this information.
Case diameter without crown: 42mm
Lug to lug: 45mm or 46mm depending on your point of view. I'll explain that in a moment.
Lug width: 22mm
Bracelet: 22mm tapering to 18mm then back up to 20mm at the clasp
In the way the watch case is shaped, the lug to lug measurement is 45mm where the case meets the wrist. However, since the lugs slope down, the top edge is 46mm. What matters more is the 45mm measurement because that's the one you feel.
Lovely complicated simplicity
At first glance, this watch looks really complicated. It's actually the exact opposite.
If you ignore the slide rule bezel and top 2 subdials, what you have is a time-only watch with a small seconds subdial at the bottom. This watch has no date complication at all, which is proper for a chronograph watch as far as I'm concerned.
Even if you have no idea what the other two dials are for, and had no clue what upper right top and bottom pushers (buttons) are for, it doesn't matter. The only thing you need to know about this watch is pull the crown, set the time, push the crown back in, done. There is literally nothing else to set.
How the other stuff works
Let's say you do care what the other stuff is about. Here's how that works:
The long hands are hour, minute and stopwatch seconds. The stopwatch seconds hand only moves when timing something. Regular seconds for time is dedicated to the bottom subdial.
Top right pusher starts and stops the stopwatch. On first press to start, there is a click. On second press to stop, no click. Every press after that, no click until the stopwatch is reset. The reason for no click after the first press is so that the stopwatch and subdials don't reset themselves until you instruct the watch to do so.
The bottom right pusher resets the stopwatch and the top two subdials all to zero. When resetting, there is a click. If everything is already set back to zero, no click.
Top subdial at 12 o'clock is stopwatch minutes, 0 through 60.
Left subdial at 9 o'clock is stopwatch hours, 0 through 12, meaning this watch has a maximum of 12 hours of stopwatch time it can record.
Bottom subdial as mentioned already is dedicated small seconds for regular time.
This watch features a friction slide rule bezel, meaning it can be rotated either way, and rotation is smooth with no clicks. This is normal for how a slide rule bezel is supposed to work.
Can you actually calculate things with this bezel? In fact, yes. But the numbers are quite small, so if you want bigger numbers that are easier to read, you'll need a bigger aviation watch like the Casio EF527D or Citizen Blue Angels AT8020. (The Blue Angels watch is supremely good because that one has atomic timekeeping and is solar powered, which is quite awesome.)
Absolutely fantastic chronograph for smaller wrists
I have a 6.5" wrist, and it's usually true that wearing anything over 38mm is a bad idea. But this 42mm watch fits great, and I know exactly why. There are two reasons.
First, the dial itself is actually fairly small because a good chunk of the width is taken up by the fixed inner ring and bezel.
Second, the lugs do curve down. Not by a lot, but enough to where it counts.
Could a larger wrist wear the MTP4500D? Yes, absolutely. Enough bracelet links are provided so even somebody with an 8" wrist could wear it. However, my point is that even on my 6.5" wrist, it still wears great.
This watch looks expensive
This is not an expensive watch, but it sure looks like it costs a lot.
The small seconds subdial very easily hides the fact the MTP4500D is a quartz timepiece. The only time you ever see the long seconds hand ticking is when the stopwatch is running.
And speaking of ticking, you never hear it. This is without question the most quiet ticking watch I've ever owned. Even with the stopwatch running in a quiet room, when I press this watch to my ear, I hear no ticking whatsoever. I don't know how Casio did it, but they somehow made an ultra-silent quartz ticking watch with this model.
Screw-down case back? Yes! Looks fancy, and makes for easier battery changes when need be.
There is some shine to the hour markers, hands and subdial hands, but done in a nice way that's not too over-the-stop. Just right.
The orange stopwatch seconds hand and small seconds hand look cool.
The MTP4500D does look like a man's professional timepiece. Casio styled this one very well and it looks impressive.
Granted, this doesn't look as impressive as the Citizen mentioned above or a Seiko Flightmaster, but I'd argue the Casio is easier to read. It has a busy dial, but not as busy as other aviation timepieces.
Also, you could put the MTP4500D right up against the Citizen and Seiko offerings and it wouldn't look out of place, appearance wise.
This watch is definitely a keeper. Right look, and certainly the right price.
Published 2021 May 6
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