The Ana-Digi Temp lineup was one of the most popular watches manufactured by Citizen Watch Co in Japan. These watches offered both, analog and LCD digital displays, plus a full array of functions such as dual time, alarm, chronograph, ambient temperature sensor and display back lighting. These Citizens were considered to be a technological breakthrough when they were first introduced to the market in 1978. Compact, lightweight, durable, accurate and very futuristic in both design and feature set.
The Citizen Ana-Digi Temp watches were mostly marketed in Asia, Europe, South/Central America, Australia and other parts of the world. However, these watches were never (As far as I am concerned) sold officially by the Citizen AD network in the United States and Canada. In 23 years of living in the United States, I have never seen a Citizen Ana-Digi temp sold in a local AD's display case.
I have owned a few Ana-Digis before, including a couple of fairly rare early models. My last Ana-Digi was the widely popular "1980's Squared" JG2000-59F all stainless steel watch. That watch was given to me by my parents as a B-Day gift when I was 13 years old (And still living in South America) and kept it for the next 25 or so years. I absolutely loved that watch and got many compliments on it. I did everything and anything with it. School, college, first jobs, vacations, etc. That watch took a beating to say the least:
Sadly, earlier this year, my May 1980 build date JG2000-59F finally "kicked the bucket" and so I set on in finding a suitable replacement..... Preferably another brand new Ana-Digi Temp.
Lucky me, although Citizen stopped making these watches in the early 2000's, my initial internet searches found several retailers still selling new-old stock watches (NOS) and not only that, but a fair amount of model variants that Citizen offered through the years (All priced between US$100-US$150). I was happy and relieved! I could still get my hands on what essentially is now a cool retro-future watch brand new in its box, with tags, papers and warranty.
Knowing availability for this watch, then the question was.... Which one to get? Another JG2000-59F with an updated movement with 100 year auto-calendar? Or instead get the same watch but with a more modern and up-to-date case, crystal and bracelet design?
As much as I loved my JG2000, that watch is simply too small by today's standards.... The case was 31mm wide and only 3-4mm thick (Back in the '80s the trend of men's watches was for small/thin cases). The bracelet was even thinner. Looks like a funky women's watch:think:
So I kept looking and that search lead me to my brand new NOS Citizen Ana-Digi Temp JG2081-57F:
The JG2081-57F was the "farewell" model for the Ana-Digi lineup.. My particular sample, appears to have been manufactured in August, 2000 if going by the first 2 digits of the serial number:
This is a very handsome looking watch and it is a clear improvement over my old JG2000 in many areas. For starters, this watch features Citizen's battery operated Cal. 8988 Quartz Ana-Digi movement with the following features:
- Hourly Chime
- Classic LCD displays (3 of them as you can see for time, seconds and function select window display)
- Dual analog watches, labeled A1 and A2 (1 for second time zone and the other acts as a seconds hand or can be set as a third time zone)
- Dual time display
- 1/1000 sec Chronograph with Lap function
- Lighted LCD displays (Old school type of lighting by the way)
- 100 year auto calendar (From 1999 until 2099)
The watch case is very pleasing to the eye and touch as you can see on this wrist shot:
It features brushed stainless steel sides all the way up and down to the bracelet lugs. In the inner portions surrounding the crystal, you get polished areas that give the watch a very distinctive look. The crystal itself is mineral Hardlex and it is domed. I love this aspect of the design as domed crystals are somewhat rare in digital watches and especially, watches of this vintage
The face of the dial is dark charcoal with very clear and easy to read markings for the different functions and displays. There are 4 push buttons around the case and these are polished as well:
The bracelet links are also show a brushed finish and the clasp is a rather flimsy fold over with safety push button design:
The bracelet design itself is very nice and contemporary. The first links are tampered but the links itself are a little on the light side and the bracelet itself rackets quite a bit. Not too much to drive you nuts, but if you are used to today's "beefier" SS bracelets you'll probably find this one to sort of bring down the quality of the watch. Still, and to be perfectly fair, the finish on the bracelet is excellent and it is very comfortable to wear on my 6.5 inch wrist:
The watch itself is very light. You would think it is made of Titanium, not Stainless Steel. By Comparison, a new Citizen Eco-Drive Promaster SST will feel like Goliath right next to this Ana-Digi Temp.
The case is 45mm at its widest middle point. From lug to lug, the distance is 25mm. The case itself is about 7-8mm thick. The bracelet is 20mm wide. The caseback is stainless steel and it is old school "Pressed in".
Pretty respectable dimensions for a watch that sports a 1980's movement and a far cry from my 31mm cased JG2000.
The watch wears nicely but it is not overwhelming by any stretch of the imagination.
The movement's analog and LCD displays talk to each other. This is often a complaint with some ana-digi watches where the dual displays model simply have no communication with each other.
Take a closer look at the function window on the left lower corner of the dial:
When you press the "Mode" button (Upper left corner of the case), the arrow moves along (It is an animated LCD arrow) to indicate which function you are viewing at the moment:
Date/Temperature display (In Centigrade or Farenheit)
Below the arrow there are 2 smaller displays. One tells you when the alarm is turned on "ALM" and the one next to it will show if the hourly chime is turned on "CHI".
The bigger LCD display next to it displays the hour, dual time, alarm and chronograph.
The smaller LCD display below it, displays the seconds, temperature, last recorded temperature at the time the alarm was activated (Kind of interesting feature), seconds for dual time and finally the 1/1000 seconds split display for the chronograph function.
The analog display A1 shows either your home time or you can set it up to display another time zone. Analog display A2 is multi-function. It can act as a seconds hand (And it is use to 0 calibrate the A2 seconds hand with the seconds LCD display), it can also show the time the alarm has been set to without having to cycle all the way to alarm mode, it also shows the dual time and finally, it also acts as a full 60 minute clock counter for the chronograph. Pretty cool, eh?
The temperature sensor function is hit or miss. I do not think this movement has the algorithm that allows the temperature sensor read out to subtract the added degrees of the wearer's body temperature. But it is a cool feature nevertheless.
The expected battery life for this movement is about 3 years and that is pretty consistent with my prior experience with the older Citizen JG2000. However, if you do use the backlighting a lot, expect the battery to run out a lot quicker. However, unlike my old JG2000, the light has a 4 second time-out to prevent battery down run but bulb itself is not as energy efficient as in more modern LCD watches. Unfortunately, these is no lume whatsoever for the analog portion of the watch. My old JG2000 used to have luminous hands and markers for the analog watches, but these were removed in the JG2081. So at night, the only portion of the watch visible will be the LCD displays.
I absolutely love this watch. If you have a soft spot for nostalgia 1980's LCD/Analog watches and you like this type of Citizen, this is the watch for you. People look at it and ask questions. It is a damn functional, reliable and fun looking piece. Looks great in the office environment and equally feels at home on the weekend with a T-Shirt and Jeans.
The water rating (WR) for this watch is 50 meters. Not bad. I used to take showers and swim in the ocean with my JG2000 that was merely "Water resist" and never conked on me. So at least with this watch, you can feel more confident about taking it to your favorite water related activities.
I highly recommend this watch. WISer should have this little piece of history in their prized watch case collections. Really, it is well worth it.
You may ask, where I bought it. Well, I am going to give the props at Jason over at http://www.creationwatches.com for hooking me up with this beautiful timepiece.
The box is very nice (Unlike the disposable cylinder shape boxes found on most Citizen Eco-Drive watches). The manual is very comprehensive and Jason gave me Citizen's 1 year International warranty valid in the United States and everywhere else. I suspect I'll never get to use it given the quality and reliability of these watches:-d
Hope you enjoyed the review and if you were on the fence about getting one of this, I hope my review helped you make a more educated decision.
Feel free to ask any questions or issue comments.:-!
Citizen Ana-Digi-Temp JG2081 Reviewed
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