You can spend upward of $500 for a good adventure watch, but reviewers say the affordable Tech4O Traileader Jet provides a good mix of features, performance and value. Designed for outdoor enthusiasts, the Tech4O watch features an altimeter, barometer, digital compass, thermometer and chronograph. It also tracks speed and distance via an onboard accelerometer. Reviewers say the watch is perfect for hikers or trail runners, and the large display is easy to read in a variety of weather conditions. The watch is large and bulky, but most users say they are willing to overlook that downside because the TechO Traileader Jet comes with so many features. The watch is water-resistant to 10 meters (30 feet), but we saw a number of reports that the watch stops working correctly when it gets wet. In addition, the accelerometer isn't quite as accurate as GPS for tracking speed and distance. If you prefer a GPS-enabled watch, reviews point to the Garmin Forerunner 210 (*Est. $200; $250 with heart-rate monitor).
A number of outdoor and fitness publications review the Tech4O Traileader Jet, including Backpacker, Running Times, Trail Runner and Outside magazines. These short reviews don't always provide lots of detail, but Backpacker magazine is especially useful because it includes tester comments in its analysis. A small number of user reviews are available at Amazon.com.
Backpacker magazine says the Tech4O Traileader Jet is accurate for most terrain, although it can overestimate distance on technical and rocky trails. However, reviewers say the display is easy to read and a backlight is a welcome feature.
Review: Gear Review: Tech4O Traileader Jet, Editors of Backpacker, April 2010
The Tech4O Traileader Jet earns a recommendation from Running Times magazine, which says the watch is good for "technical trail running."
Review: Keeping Up With the Time, Brian Metzler, March 2010
3. Trail Runner
Trail Runner magazine recommends the Tech4O Traileader Jet in its annual Gear Guide. Although they find the display hard to read, editors say the watch is intuitive and the functions are "easy to learn."
Review: 2010 Gear Guide, Michael Benge and Elinor Fish, June 2010
4. Outside Magazine
Outside magazine gives a Killer Value award to the Tech4O Traileader Jet. Justin Nyberg says the adventure watch is "perfect for trail runners," although he notes that the built-in accelerometer isn't as accurate for tracking speed and distance as a GPS watch.
Review: The Essentials: Tick List, Justin Nyberg, May 2010
The Tech4O Traileader Jet has a handful of reviews at Amazon.com, and opinions are mixed. There are numerous reports that the watch stopped working when it got wet, even though it is advertised as being water-resistant to 30 feet.
Review: Tech4O 2010 Traileader Jet All-In-One Outdoor Watch, Contributors to Amazon.com