The Toughest Call of Them All:
So, you too, are having mixed feelings about two of the Casio’s most popular G-Shock watches?
Well… Join the club.
The RangeMan vs. Mudman debate is raging, and it’s showing no signs of stopping any time soon.
But… A Watch Is a Watch, Right?
You see… That’s where you’re wrong.
Don’t tell me you actually thought that only women ponder over accessories. You did? Boy, do you need to wake up and smell the bacon!
Men do it too! (Yes, we do, folks. We need to stop denying it.)
These two timepieces are not your ordinary accessories, mind you. They come from a long line of watches whose main purpose is not only to tell time but also to resist all types of vibrations and mechanical shock. They are popular among athletes, soldiers, survivalists, and adrenaline junkies of all sorts.
So, no, gentlemen. A watch is not just a watch. Especially when it comes to Casio G-Shock.
- 1 So, Why These Two?
- 2 Looks
- 3 Feel
- 4 Instruments and Special Features
- 5 Overall Durability
- 6 Price
- 7 So… What’s the Verdict?
So, Why These Two?
Because they’re awesome. And if you keep on reading, you’ll find out why.
But first, let’s get one thing straight. My job here today is not to point my finger at either of these watches and tell you to buy it.
Sorry, fellas. Your choice has to be exactly that — your choice.
But I do want to shed some light on what makes these watches so unique. People are torn between the two for a number of good reasons, you know?
So I decided to compare them and share my conclusions with you. Then you can run off and buy whichever you end up liking more.
Okay, so Casio decided to play it safe with these two.
Right off the bat, the G9300-1 MudMan and the GW-9400-1CR RangeMan look nearly identical. I mean, really, looking at these two watches sitting next to one another is like staring at one of those spot the difference puzzles!
They both have cases which are 5.4 cm in diameter and their dial windows are made of mineral glass. Furthermore, the differences in case thickness and band width can literally be measured in millimeters. Namely, while the MudMan boasts a 19-millimeter case, the RangeMan boasts an 18.2-millimeter one. Similarly, while the MudMan’s band is 18.2 mm wide, the width of the RangeMan’s is 22 mm!
Now, that’s what I call sticking to a pattern!
But wanna know the fun part? It doesn’t stop there.
Both of these watches come in a matte black color, sporting handsome digital displays with a light background and black digits. Even the red accents are used similarly — to draw your attention to the important features.
Even when you pay closer attention to the displays, you’ll hardly be able to spot the differences. I mean, sure, the date layout is a bit different, but that doesn’t change the overall impression. These watches are incredibly similar.
The good part of this apparent look-alike contest lies in the fact that both the RangeMan and the MudMan look incredibly hi-tech. And that, I think, was one of Casio’s goals. (That, and to bamboozle us, apparently.)
Okay, so they look awesome. But do they feel the same?
To answer it, I actually had to go and try them on.
By trying them on, I was able to personally see how comfortable these watches really are. And I must say, if you’re basing your entire decision on the feel factor, you’ll never buy a watch.
Much like with the looks, the feeling when wearing the G9300-1 MudMan is not at all that different from the feeling when wearing the GW-9400-1CR RangeMan.
Sorry, folks. No easy pass here.
Both of the timepieces sport resin bands, which is, in fact, awesome. We all know (or do we?) that resin is not only strong but also lightweight. As such, resin bands feel great on all skin types and they don’t cause too much friction.
In addition to that, I really didn’t notice that the differences in case size and band width caused any more or less discomfort. Such tiny variations really can’t factor in the overall impression.
All in all, both the MudMan and the RangeMan are lightweight and very comfortable. In all honesty, guys, it was to be expected.
Believe me, guys, I was as frustrated as you are now when I started doing my research. But I promise you, I’m not doing this to annoy you. I really am trying to help!
Instruments and Special Features
Believe it or not, these two watches actually differ! It’s just that the differences become apparent once you actually manage to see beyond their awesome appearance.
Mind you — the instruments and the features are no less impressive than the cases that house them.
The Tough Solar Technology
A feature that Casio is extremely proud of, the Tough Solar is a system that enables MudMan’s and RangeMan’s batteries to virtually last forever.
Pretty neat, huh?
Now, I don’t know about you, guys, but at this point, I’m actually glad I can say both of these watches feature Tough Solar. Whichever you end up choosing, you’ll only need to charge it once — when you buy it.
Obviously, these watches are powered by sunlight. So when you buy one, just place it under direct sunlight and wait for the battery level to read “Hi.” After that, you’re good to go. Forever.
Atomic Timekeeping Support
Basically, this feature implies that there’s a receiver inside a watch, and its job is to “listen” for radio signals at several points during the day as well as at midnight.
These signals help keep the watch as accurate as possible, within several seconds of the actual time. What’s more, during DST, you won’t have to worry about calibrating your watch — it will adjust automatically.
Interestingly enough, only the GW-9400-1CR RangeMan has the atomic timekeeping support. This could be a dealbreaker for those of you who need superb timekeeping out there.
Extra Timekeeping Features
Speaking of superb timekeeping, you should know that both the RangeMan and the MudMan have a few neat tricks hidden up their sleeve. Or should I say, inside their case?
Anyway, they both have a highly accurate 1/100th-second stopwatch. What’s more, they both have an auto-calendar. (I know you might think you don’t really need this feature, but… You never know. Things happen.)
Support for Dual Time Zone and World Time
If you are an avid traveler, then you already know why this feature is important. If you’re not, let me tell you.
The Dual Time Zone feature means that the watch is capable of simultaneously tracking and displaying the time in two different time zones. When I say simultaneously, I mean in one display.
The World Time feature, on the other hand, will keep track of multiple time zones around the world.
As awesome as these two features are, you need to remember one thing. The G9300-1 MudMan doesn’t have atomic timekeeping support. Wanna know why that’s important? Because that means time is not automatically updated when you switch time zones. You’ll have to do it manually.
When it comes to GW-9400-1CR RangeMan, you’re safe. It’ll update on its own.
Sunrise and Sunset Data
This is yet another feature that sets the RangeMan watch apart from its counterpart. Namely, thanks to the atomic timekeeping feature, this watch is also capable of receiving data about the exact time of sunrise and sunset.
While the feature does sound cool, I have to note that having it will be more important for those of you who love outdoor activities like hunting, hiking or trekking. You don’t want darkness sneaking up on you unprepared, do you?
Moon Phase Calendar
If you thought the MudMan watch had nothing that could compete with the RangeMan’s Sunrise and Sunset Data feature, then think again.
The Moon Phase Calendar feature will come in handy to every angler looking for a watch. With it, you’ll always know when the tides are high and, thus, will ensure several great catches during the month.
Digital Compass Functionality
This is a feature that sets apart Casio as a more luxurious survival watch brand. I’m sure you’ll agree with me that it’s much more convenient to have your compass right there, inside your watch.
Naturally, both the GW-9400-1CR RangeMan and the G9300-1 MudMan feature a digital compass. So whichever you choose, you can leave your old compass at home. You will be able to tell direction without a compass, with or without a watch or compass.
The feature is just one button push away. But that’s where similarities stop, I’m afraid.
Namely, the digital dial of the MudMan’s compass displays North according to the direction that you are facing. What’s more, the watch is designed so as to assume that you’d be holding your wrist in front of you and parallel to your chest when looking at the compass.
The RangeMan’s compass, on the other hand, displays a digital ticker that shows where North is. Aside from that, the compass is also capable of displaying your current direction.
In both cases, users have reported a supreme level of accuracy in both compasses. What’s more, they said that both are incredibly easy to navigate.
That’s good news, right?
Triple Sensor Technology
Last but not least on the list of cool features is Casio’s highly praised triple sensor package — a thermometer, barometer, and altimeter.
If, for some strange reason, you’re wondering why this feature is necessary, allow me to elaborate.
In the wild, it’s all fun and games until it suddenly starts raining. Unless you’re into singing in the rain (and mud), you want to be able to tell when a downpour might start. A barometer makes that possible. And a digital barometer can predict rainfall with incredible precision.
Furthermore, it should be obvious why having a thermometer could be vital to your survival in the great outdoors. But there’s something I want to point out here. When using this feature, make sure the watch is not on your wrist. Many users report inaccurate readings in such situations.
Finally, a digital altimeter might come in handy to hikers and campers who have a thing for studying topographical maps. It’s also a great navigational tool.
While the Triple Sensor Technology is a rather awesome feature, I’m afraid the G9300-1 MudMan supports only ⅓ of it. Namely, it only features a thermometer.
The GW-9400-1CR RangeMan, on the other hand, supports the whole package, thus being more useful in the outdoors.
Both the RangeMan and the MudMan are watches that avid swimmers will love. Why? Because they’re not only water resistant, but you can submerge them as deep as 660 feet.
Although this last bit is something divers would be thrilled to hear, I need to underline that these watches are not designed for diving purposes. In all other situations, you won’t have to worry about either of them getting wet.
They can handle a splash or two.
I hate to repeat myself, but I have to do it here.
I have already mentioned that Casio’s G-Shock watches can withstand all kinds of mechanical shock, right? Well, these watches are probably the brightest examples of that technology at work. They are built to last you a lifetime. And longer.
First of all, it’s awesome that they remain functional at temperatures as low as 10 degrees Fahrenheit.
Furthermore, remember the mineral glass dial? It’s resistant to scratches! That’s right, guys. I bet you didn’t know how durable mineral glass is.
The bottom line is — the GW-9400-1CR RangeMan and the G9300-1 MudMan are virtually indestructible.
Last, but definitely not the least — how much can you expect to shell out for such awesomeness?
Well, more than a hundred bucks, that’s for sure. The prices vary depending on the retailer, but I did notice that the RangeMan always tends to be a tad more expensive than the MudMan.
So… What’s the Verdict?
Nice try, fellas.
I already told you I’m not going to make that decision for you.
The best I can do for you is summarize this long comparison and put my two cents in it.
So here it goes.
My Opinion on the Casio RangeMan
While I am absolutely thrilled by the abundance of awesome features in the GW-9400-1CR RangeMan, I have to admit that its price point can cause some mild discomfort. However, it could be worth it.
I mean, let’s be honest. A long-lasting battery combined with atomic timekeeping and exquisite durability certainly makes it worth the money.
- Solar-powered digital watch in stainless steel with multiple displays, red contrasts, and textured pushers
- Quartz movement with analog display
- Protective mineral crystal dial window
- Features digital compass, altimeter, barometer, thermometer, sunrise and sunset date, time stamp, Mb6 atomic...
- Water resistant to 660 feet (200 M): suitable for recreational scuba diving
My opinion on the Casio MudMan
On the other hand, the G9300-1 MudMan’s lower price point doesn’t in any way make it less worthy of your attention. Much like its counterpart, it runs on solar power. However, it does come without some really important sensors and features.
- Tough Solar
- Digital Compass
- Moon Graph
- Shock Resistant
All that, in my opinion, still doesn’t disqualify it as unworthy of a shot.
To make the long story short, you understand as well as I that it’s really hard to tell which of these two watches is a better choice.
I mean, sure, I’ve listed a number of factors you should consider when choosing. But I can’t possibly know why you need the watch in the first place.
So, guys, please — keep your own criteria in mind when making the decision. Use this article as a guideline, not as a rulebook.