One of the brands we look forward to visiting at Baselworld (and at CoutureTime in Las Vegas) every year is Casio so we can see the latest developments to the expansive G-Shock family of watches. The overall value proposition of any new G-Shock novelty combined with its enhanced functionality makes viewing the latest watches a breath of fresh air when compared to their Swiss counterparts. Of course, we love G-Shocks for different reasons than why we cherish our beloved mechanical timekeepers but that’s beside the point.
This year is an exciting one for G-Shock in a number of ways. The brand is introducing a brand new Carbon Core Guard case construction that it is marketing as the latest testament to the toughness doctrine that inventor Kikuo Ibe instilled in the G-Shock from its beginning. Not only are we seeing new developments in that regard, but we’re also seeing new aesthetic developments thanks to an ion-plating (IP) treatment that allows Casio engineers to fabricate iridescent colorways never before seen on a G-Shock. As always, there are plenty of new G-Shock releases to discuss, but we were able to narrow it down to five of the models that we are most excited about for this article.
A Rainbow on the Wrist with the New MTG-B1000RB
If you weren’t in Switzerland for the Basel fair or in Las Vegas for CoutureTime, then the G-Shock you were most likely to see on social media was this limited edition update to the MT-G collection. Meant to commemorate the 20-year anniversary of the MT-G lineup, the MTG-B1000RB features an eye-catching rainbow IP bezel alongside other colorful detailing on the hands and subdials, a gold-colored crown, and a blue IP treatment on the lug and band pieces.
Casio says that the rainbow bezel is meant to evoke a lunar rainbow, a very distinctive meteorological phenomenon that is formed from the light of the moon. The color changes on the bezel are completely unique in each model. While the rainbow bezel is the most memorable aspect, I really appreciate the colors used around the dial itself. All the hands and numbers feature slightly different hues to create a very wholesome rainbow effect. Rather than seem over-the-top and blingy like many of the other rainbow timepieces on the market today, the MTG-B1000RB offers a slightly more subdued take on a style that seems to be growing more and more popular.
Functionally, the MTG-B1000RB is right at home within the greater MT-G collection with Bluetooth connectivity that allows for self-adjusting atomic timekeeping when connected to the G-Shock Connected smartphone app. Other details include standard G-Shock features like 200-meter water resistance, stopwatch, countdown timer, daily alarm, and a full LED backlight. Additionally, the MTGB1000RB-2A offers world-time capabilities with 300 cities. The watch charges through Casio’s Tough Solar technology and will be available in limited quantities for $1,000 starting in June.
A Full Metal Update with a Black, Aged IP Treatment
G-Shock has extended the popular Full Metal series that was launched last year with a new model that has been imbued with a black, aged IP treatment to give it a more vintage and weathered feel. It’s no secret that vintage-style and heritage-focused timepieces are more popular than ever and G-Shock has answered the call by providing a new option in one of its most successful recent releases.
Just like with the previous Full Metal watches, the new GMW-B5000 borrows the iconic square construction from Kikuo Ibe’s original DW-5000C that introduced the world to the G-Shock in 1983. Despite its aged look and traditional design, the hardware inside the GMW-B5000 is all state-of-the-art. It offers smartphone link function for automatic time adjustment and quick world-time setting for over 300 cities + original point, home time/world time switching, localized calendar setting. Other traditional features like 1/100 second stopwatch, daily alarm, phone finder, and LED backlight are all here as well. It’s priced at $1,000 and you can expect it to be available in June.
MR-G Collection Grows with Samurai Sword-Style Finishing
Inside the high-end MR-G collection, we have the MRG-G2000GA, a model that feels like a direct sequel to last year’s popular MR-G Special Edition. Where last year’s model featured a bezel that was hand-hammered to resemble the hilt of samurai swords, this new model features a bracelet that has been hand finished by the renowned Japanese swordsmith Sadanobu Gassan. Furthermore, the watch uses a Cobarion bezel with a mirror finish and a unique crescent-shaped design meant to recall the pointed tip of a sword (Cobarion is a cobalt-chrome alloy that is twice as hard as stainless steel and resembles platinum), a recrystallized titanium case that recreates the feel of a tempered blade, and a rich violet colorway that is a result of AIP processing and resembles the traditional Japanese color of heated and hardened steel.
Gassan’s unique hand finishing is called Yasuri-me which roughly translates to “rasp mark” in English. It’s a kind of pattern that is applied to the tang of a Japanese sword blade to prevent the blade from slipping out of its owner’s grip. In the MRG-G2000GA, the markings can be found on the center links of the band. On the second link, you can find a hand-carved signature of the Gassan family saying Tan-tou-hito-suji, which translates to “devotion to the forging of swords.” This style of treatment has been passed down through the Gassan family of swordmakers for six generations.
This being a G-Shock, it’s still highly functional with Bluetooth connectivity that allows for self-adjusting atomic timekeeping when connected to the G-Shock Connected smartphone app and auto hand home position correction, 200-meter water resistance, stopwatch, countdown timer, daily alarm, full auto calendar, and a full LED backlight. Additionally, the MTGB1000RB-2A offers world-time capabilities for over 300 cities. The watch charges through Casio’s Tough Solar technology, is limited to 300 total pieces, and is priced at $7,400.
The Mudmaster is at Home with New Carbon Core Guard Construction
The latest addition to the fan-favorite Mudmaster range is the GG-B100 with Carbon Core Guard construction. This new case design is part of a new campaign for G-Shock focused on the buildout of cases made of carbon fiber. A quick summary of it works like this: a new, highly shock-resistant structure made of carbon fiber is integrated into the case’s interior while the exterior design capitalizes on carbon fiber’s toughness and lightness. The new appearance also called for the development of a new button structure that removes the button guards from the watch’s exterior. In the GG-B100, the bezel is built using a triple-layer construction that involves a carbon fiber sheet inserted into a fine resin. The outer layer of the fine resin has been turned clear to make the recognizable carbon fiber design visible from the outside. Casio bills the Carbon Core Guard construction as “The Third Toughness” for G-Shock following the initial resin build that the watch made its name on in the 1980s to the metal cases we started seeing in the late 1990s. There are four total models (so far) that will use the Carbon Core Guard construction including the Mudmaster GG-B100, but it seems like we’ll be seeing a lot more of this high-tech material throughout G-Shock’s various lines.
Other than this entirely new case design, the GG-B100 has a quad sensor built into its movement that enables an accelerometer function for step tracking. This new accelerometer allowed G-Shock to add a calorimeter to the Mudmaster for the first time. Other miniature sensors that allow for atmospheric pressure, temperature, and digital compass indications remain from previous iterations. There is also, of course, enhanced mud-resistance due to an airtight design and a filter that blocks the intrusion of dirt. Other features include a daily alarm, sunrise/sunset time display, phone finder, world-time, 200-meter water resistance, and 1/100-second stopwatch. The new Mudmaster GG-B100 will be available in August for $350.
A Smaller Case with a Larger Dial in the Latest G-Steel
The G-Steel GST-B200 also uses the new Carbon Core Guard construction to a much different effect. Thanks to the carbon structure, the GST-B200 was able to reduce its case size despite featuring a larger diameter for the dial itself. In fact, compared to the most recent G-Steel model, the diameter of the dial has been increased by 2.8 mm, while the overall size has been decreased by 2.6 mm. Just like with the Mudmaster, the carbon case allowed for a new button design with stronger shock resistance in the GST-B200. There’s an LCD screen located in the upper half of the dial that can display various indicators like the alarm and stopwatch. The GST-B200 also offers smartwatch connectivity through the G-Shock Connected app for automatic time adjustment, world-time for over 300 cities, and a phone finder. The watch is solar powered through the brand’s proprietary Tough Solar technology and offers up to five daily alarms, 200-meter water resistance, and a 1/1000-second stopwatch. The new G-Steel GST-B200 is priced at $280.