Unlike the MRG-B5000B, which was closely based on the first-generation model and whose dial used the key G-Shock color of red, the defining tone of the new MRG-B5000BA is blue. The concept behind the design is the “ao-zumi” (blue ink) used in Japanese calligraphy. The deep blue creates a mood of peace and serenity quite different to the effect of the traditional red, bringing out the “quiet strength” typical of Zen spirituality.
Photographs by Yu Mitamura
Edits & Text by Yuzo Takeishi
The Japanese-Developed Advanced Materials Behind the Ultimate Full-Metal Origin Watch
Another important aspect of Casio’s effort to produce the perfect encapsulation of the Origin concept was the materials used for the exterior of the watch. The regular full-metal Origin watches are made of stainless steel or titanium, but for the MRG-B5000, Casio carefully selected the finest advanced materials with excellent scratch resistance. As well as giving the watch a stunning esthetic appearance befitting the company’s luxury line, this also ensures that the pleasures of its high-quality exterior will continue to be enjoyed for many years into the future.
The latest color variation in the MRG-B5000 series uses the same shock-resistant multi-guard structure and exterior materials as previous iterations, while adding hints of color inspired by traditional Japanese “ao-zumi” (blue ink) throughout the watch. The sharp-angled design is modeled on the first generation G-Shock, but incorporates cutting-edge features including mobile link, which allows the watch to be linked to a smartphone via Bluetooth®. Tough Solar. Approximately 22 months on a full charge (in power save mode). 64Ti x Cobarion (49.4 mm x 43.2 mm). Water resistant to 20 bars.
The base material in the MRG-B5000 is Ti-64, the same titanium alloy that has often been used in other models in the G-Shock series. In addition, Cobarion is used in the top bezel and DAT55G, another titanium alloy, is used in the links of the bracelet. Cobarion and the DAT55G alloy are both advanced materials developed in Japan. The MR-G series has offered several models inspired by Japanese armor in the past, and the MRG-B5000 is another watch that proudly emphasizes its distinctly Japanese heritage through its choice of these unique Japanese-developed materials.
|In designing the MRG-B5000, Casio’s team carefully assessed the characteristics and workability of the various materials used and ensured that the right material was used in each component. The top bezel (top left) uses Cobarion, the material offering optimal resistance to scratches. The center case (top center), case back (top right), and the buckle (bottom right) are made from the Ti-64 alloy, while the bracelet links (bottom left) are made of DAT55G, chosen for its excellent workability.|
|The links in the bracelet are made from a DAT55G titanium alloy developed by Daido Steel, a specialty steel manufacturer. The material is comparatively soft before heat treatment, making it possible to insert the small pinholes used to join the bracelet links and other subtle machining details.|
Blue Accents Express “Quiet Strength”
Casio believed from the outset that these advanced materials with excellent scratch resistance and the new structure that subdivided the case cover into separate parts would make it possible to develop subsequent variations on the MRG-B5000 model. The MR-G series has always used color variations to give additional significance and narrative to the watches in the series, and it was only natural to want to impart these elements to the MRG-B5000 as well. But first, a simple question had to be answered: “What would be a fitting color for this pinnacle of the Origin range?”
Inheriting the design of the original G-Shock, the Origin series has a simpler exterior design than the MR-G watches, which incorporate an analog display. One example is the MRG-B2000B, known as the “Kachi-iro” (Victory Color) model, released in 2021. With its massive proportions and intricately shaped bezel, this model has an appearance reminiscent of Japanese armor, giving it a strength and fierceness absent from the Origin watches. Although all G-Shock watches share the common elements of toughness and strength, each model and series features designs that express this strength in different ways.
|One model that takes the sensibility in a different direction from the Origin watches, expressing a fierceness absent from the original models, was the MRG-B2000B-1A (right), released in 2021. Using the traditional Japanese “Kachi-iro” (Victory Color), the watch’s boldly imposing proportions and appearance are reminiscent of samurai armor from the Warring States period. The case and bracelet use titanium combining deep-layer hardening and a diamond-like carbon (DLC) coating, for maximum scratch resistance. Tough solar. Approximately 26 months on full charge (in power save mode). Ti (54.7 mm x 49.8 mm). Water resistance to 20 bars.|
How to come up with a new expression of strength that would reflect the unique sensibility of this model? Casio’s answer to this question was inspired by an image of Zen. The Origin series looks to strip away superfluous elements, offering a pure and simple expression of the robustness and shock resistance that are the essence of the G-Shock concept. In this, the series is similar to Zen Buddhism, in which practitioners look to hone their mental strength through a quiet confrontation with the self. The key to bringing out this sensibility in an Origin watch was the “ao-zumi” (blue ink) mentioned above, which is credited with properties that can bring a sense of calm and inner peace. The use of this color gives this iteration of the Origin series a quiet strength quite different from the aggressive fierceness of the MR-G model.
On conventional models in the full-metal Origin watches, accent colors are added using ion plating on the bezel and bracelet (or each of its links), or laser-engraving is used to add patterning. Since the body of the MRG-B5000 is made up of smaller components, it is possible to add more precise pin-point coloring. The MRG-B5000BA uses vapor deposition to add accents of blue to the outer edge of the dial and ion plating to add accents to the concave surfaces at the four corners of the case and the bracelet screws. The combination of the DLC-coated black case and bracelet with subtle hints of blue coloring creates a feeling of tranquility imbued with an inner strength that is unlike anything seen before on a G-Shock watch.
|The outer edge of the dial features blue accents using vapor deposition. Ion plating is used to add blue touches to the flat spring components placed in the four corners of the bezel and the bracelet pins. The addition of blue accents to a fundamentally black color scheme gives the watch a relaxed and understated appearance that means it can be worn in a wide variety of casual and semi-formal settings, including with a jacket.|
As well as making use of advanced materials developed in Japan, the use of the “ao-zumi” (blue ink) theme transforms the MRG-B5000BA into a model with a clear and unique concept. This is more than a mere color variation. Created from a desire to create the ultimate version of a full-metal Origin watch, this latest model was made possible by the new structure and the attention to detail in the selection of materials. This new color expression hints at a further expansion of designs in the MR-G range in the years to come.
For more info: https://gshock.casio.com/us/products/mr-g/mrg-b5000ba/