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Q:

Any ideas for a great multi-function watch?

I need a multi-function barometer-altimeter-compass watch for trekking. I was looking at the Suunto Core watch (which I like) but I also found the Tech4o TrailLeader Pro. Is it a good watch, too? Do you have any other suggestions?

Suunto Core Watch in Lava Red

Suunto Core Watch in Lava Red     Photo: Courtesy of Suunto

A:You’re on the right track, Jacob. Suunto’s Core ($249 in the Lava Red Multifunction edition, which is pretty sharp) has all the basics: altimeter accurate to a meter, digital compass, watch functions, and a barometer. And it’s waterproof to 100 feet, just in case.

The Tech4o TrailLeader ($150) is a newish contender. It has all the same stuff as the Suunto except rate of ascent or descent, but adds an accelerometer to measure distance traveled. I haven’t tried it, but I am wildly skeptical of anything that isn't GPS-based and claims to measure distance. Who knows, though. It’s a well-featured watch at a good price.

My personal favorite is the St. Moritz VS-1 ($240). I like its super-sturdy steel case, accurate altimeter, and good all-around functionality. The barometer is particularly useful, as it shows trending air pressure and allows you to make an educated guess about weather that’s on the way.

Still, I mainly like altimeter watches for that altimeter function. It always helps to know how much longer I need to keep grinding uphill.

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