Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Casio G-Shock GA-100-1A1DR "Velocity Indicator"

Here is one of a handful of new G-Shocks I got for Christmas. It's a fairly new model which debuted about a year ago. Casio says the design was inspired by the DW-5900 and GW-500, but I can also see a lot of recent Frogman in it. The size is very close to a Frogman, in both width and thickness. It also seems to share the case and external dimensions with the GA-110 series and the forthcoming GD-100 series. It seems that these watches should appeal to the same buyer as the Frogmen, but at a much lower price point than the new Frogmen. I've also found in the last year or so that G-Shock popularity has grown, G-Shock retailers have become more exclusive (no more G-Shocks at JCPenney as far as I know, now they're at Macy's) and many of the steep discounts that used to be available have all but disappeared. But I digress. Back to this watch, the design is a bit of a contradiction: the "stealthed" bezel and matte black dial tend to disguise the fact that it is quite busy, and are also offset by the bright white hands. I didn't even know until reading the manual yesterday (while trying to set it for the first time) that this watch has a 1/1000 second stopwatch as well as a speed measurement from 0 to 1998 kph. The speed measurement is rather clever, you set a distance that you wish to measure, and then, using the stopwatch, start and stop the timing. Speed is displayed using the three upper dials as well as the lower left display if the speed exceeds 1226 kph, which is Mach 1. As you can also see in the last picture below, the dial illumination is provided by a single yellow LED. That, combined with the inverted LCDs makes the digital displays a bit difficult to read in low light, but the analog hands are always quite legible. Overall, I really like the watch for its combination of size and functionality as well as originality.

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