Digitally Curious - A Vintage LCD Watch Blog

Digitally Curious - A Vintage LCD Watch Blog

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  • Monday, February 16th, 2009 - 2:02 pm
  • Seiko DATA-2000 UW01-0020 computer watch

  • My watch collection is mostly limited to Casio watches, but certain models force me to drift outside of the Casio brand.

    One of those "must-have" items for me was this Seiko DATA-2000. This early 80's watch is a true marvel, and featured on the famous pocketcalculatorshow website. http://pocketcalculatorshow.com/nerdwatch/fun2.html

    My particular example is mint in box. Let me introduce today's watch as if it was a "unpacking pictures" article.


    The box, manual and warranty booklet. These items are supposed to be encased in simple white cardboard box, but I don't have that outer box. :(


    When you open the box you are greeted by fancy inlay graphics underside the top cover, and a plastic cover with yellow foam protecting the watch on the bottom.


    Pull off the protector and finally we're greeted by the watch and keyboard, along with small a Seiko tag. All of this is fitted inside some high quality gray foam.

    Let's start with the keyboard.


    Seiko managed to fit a regular qwerty keyboard in this small package, with many custom buttons. The keyboard requires a CR-2016 battery, which goes into the small hatch on the back.


    As you might have guessed, you are supposed to place your watch in that socket. The transmission circuit is actually a very sensitive magnetic coil. There's a magnetic coil directly under that circuit and also inside the watch.

    To couple the watch & keyboard, you simply snap the watch into this socket,

    turn on the keyboard and push "transmit" on the watch. Now you're ready to go!


    Well, not really. You're just ready to transmit. When you see that "transmit standby" screen, nothing will happen if you don't press anything. You have to press one of the mode keys on the keyboard for the watch to start communicating with the keyboard.


    There are 3 things you can do in transmit mode. Calculator "memo A" and "memo B"

    memo A and B are 100% identical in function. They are separated just so you can store information in two different places.


    By now you've noticed that the watch has a dot matrix display which allows it to display pretty much any character. You can type in anything you fancy for storage in the MEMO modes, so it's like having a ASCII text editor with some extra special characters. These extra special characters were obviously designed for the businessmen on the go, as evinced by the "airplane," "workout" and "handshake between two men" icons. What's with the card suit icons?? Unfortunately there is no copy and paste. (But then again I have not read the manual, so maybe there is?)

    Oh there is one more VERY IMPORTANT thing you can do in transmit mode. You can adjust the LCD screen's contrast by pressing CNT (darker) or SHIFT-CNT (lighter). This will be necessary when the battery is brand new or very old.

    When you are done entering information, you can press "transmit" on the watch to end transmission with the keyboard. You could even pull the watch off the keyboard without loosing any data.

    =====

    When the watch is not in transmit mode, you can access its normal functions. It doesn't matter whether or not it is snapped into the keyboard.


    There is the standard time/date display, alarm and stopwatch.


    And of course there is memo A & B. Here you can retrieve (view) whatever you typed in with your keyboard, using the up and down allows to scroll through your memo if it is too long to fit on the screen.

    By the way, you can turn the hourly chime on/off by pressing the two red buttons on the watchface simultaneously. This also toggles the beeping when changing modes and using the stopwatch.

    =====


    The watch construction is very unique, featuring stainless steel band and a "composite" case--all coated black. The bezel/case is made of plastic, aluminum and stainless steel! What a combination. It seems odd at first but if you think about it, Seiko had to use plastic and avoid using an all-metal construction to utilize the magnetic-field communication between the watch and keyboard. Due to its non-magnetic construction, the watch is very light even though it is relatively large. The band is stainless steel with a 80's style clasp.

    Oh, did you see that "Battery" sticker on the caseback?


    According to the instruction book, the sticker shows when the last battery was installed. What's weird about my particular watch is that it was made in April 1984, but the battery wasn't installed until May 1984. What was it doing for a month? Who knows?!

    By the way, if you ever get your hands on a DATA-2000, be SUPER careful when you change its BR-2325 (CR-2325 works fine too) battery. Scratching the coil near the batteries will break the transmission circuit, leaving you nothing more than a pretty piece of paperweight. And it's not a very good paperweight, since it is so light.

  • Filed under: watch
  • Comments!
  • » Beautiful article, i enjoyed reading it very much! I'm a Casio-focused collector (like you) but i own a few highlights from other brands. The Data 2000 is one of them, a great watch.

    One idea regarding the "battery sticker puzzle": Maybe your watch was produced on April 30, 1984 and the battery was inserted the next day, May 1, 1984? Just a thought...
  • by: felix_77, submitted Saturday, February 21st, 2009 - 4:57 am
  • » Great article! I have a Data-2000 and a UC-3000 with keyboards from my childhood, which I would love to bring fully back to life again after decades of being forgotten, gathering dust.

    Do you have any ideas where I could obtain spare or equivalent battery clamp screws (the really tiny ones!), since there are 4 per watch - at the moment I only have 2 between both watches, the rest having been lost during careless battery changes when I was a hamfisted kid.

    I'm running the Data-2000 with just these 2 battery screws at the moment , and although it is running fine, I'm a bit worried about shaking it around too much!

    I contacted a local Seiko dealer here in the UK but apparently these screws are no longer available from Seiko :-(
  • by: andy, submitted Sunday, March 15th, 2009 - 3:35 am
  • » Well written article - loved reading it! I always wanted to show my watches the way you did: lots of pictures from every display mode and what I like / dislike about it...

    One more thing worth mentioning: the Alarm of this watch is very loud - almost like a telephone! (even sounds like one, too)

    Little sidenote: the case wasn't plastic to enable the wireless communication - it was plastic because Seiko just decided to make it that way...it works with a metal case as well: the later Memo Diary Series was an all-metal construction.

    And finally, I have to brag about it (sorry): I have this watch WITH the outer cardboard sleeve around the box...


  • by: NerdWatcher, submitted Tuesday, March 17th, 2009 - 3:32 am
  • » I whole heartedly agree, what a magnificent article and beautiful example of this treasure of a watch. I too own this great watch, albeit my container, through NUMEROUS moves during a 22yr Naval career is probably at only 80% of it's original luster. I bought this watch new as a young Navy Drill Instructor in Orlando, Florida. Somewhere along the line, the battery cover on my keyboard disappeared, and I have not attempted to operate it in 20 plus years. After reading this article, it makes me want to go buy some new batteries and give this beauty a jump start to see what information I stored in it some 25 years ago. Who knows, it may allow me to remember and locate some old shipmates of mine. Thanks again for showcasing such a gem!
  • by: Jim_GatorGhost, submitted Monday, March 23rd, 2009 - 10:25 pm
  • » Just placed new batteries in my Data-2000. Works like a champ. My watch and keyboard are surprisingly in good shape, but I have a crack and a blemish on the crystal. All in all, it's still very usable and I will probably use it.

    I appreciate the presentation above.
  • by: OD1 Kanobe, submitted Thursday, August 6th, 2009 - 4:29 pm
  • » Interesting article as I have one of these watches and was loking for the battery type,the gold effect Memo Diary - CR2325 is that correct ?

    Alarmed at the coil scratch issue.If I recall my keyboard stopped working and always wondered what the fault was.Is it not possible to correct this ?
  • by: Ian, submitted Sunday, October 25th, 2009 - 3:21 am
  • » Does any one know how much the current value of this watch currently is
  • by: Andy, submitted Tuesday, February 16th, 2010 - 8:48 am
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