What is G-Shock in Watches? Toughest Watches in the World

A Casio G-Shock Watch
Wanna A Casio G-Shock Watch

Do you want to buy a new watch or just curious about the toughest watches in the world? Probably you have done some research and came across Casio G-Shock watches so now you are curious about why there is so much excitement about G-Shock watches? or what G-Shock in watches even means?

Upon reading this article you might find many new important features of watches that have been overlooked by you in the past. We’ll try our best that after reading this article you come to know everything about Casio G-Shock watches. So let’s start…


Basic Idea in G-Shock Design and Structure

Born from a dream of “creating a watch that never breaks.” The laws of nature were challenged by a CASIO engineer about 37 years ago. That resulted in a watch design that would resist centrifugal and impact forces, as well as high water pressure. Since then G-Shock became the role model for pushing the limits which last until today.

Triple 10 development concept helped build G-Shock Watches. The design teams were looking for a watch that could resist knocks and shocks of a 10-meter free-fall, 10-bar water resistance, and had 10-year battery life. A new structure needed to be devised unlike any other.  This led to a shock-resistant design that included a hollow-structured case, all-directional protective covering and cushioning material to protect the critical parts.

Birth and Concept

Birth and concept of G-Shock watches

Kikuo Ibe was the engineer and a leading watch designer at CASIO. In 1981, he was assigned an extremely challenging project of the company with a team of just three members.

Their aim was to realize CASIO’s vision of an indestructible and toughest watch. CASIO brought up the vision of shock resistance in watches back in the days when no one seemed to bother about it at all.

Many prototypes were tried and tested for shock resistance. Even the hardest metals failed to protect watches from inside against knocks and external influences. Ibe was not satisfied at all even after testing a vast range of materials that could resist shocks.

The Breakthrough

The breakthrough in making of G-Shock Watches.

It was like a never-ending line for the team, besides putting months and months of hard work. They were no way near their goal. Ibe was about to give up.

One day, he went to a park to relax a bit where he observed children playing with a ball. He noticed that the interior of a bouncing rubber ball remains completely unaffected by the impact. This observation led his team in designing a hollow case structure in which the interior of the watch could be stored, very similar to floating.

After that, more than 200 prototypes were tested and it took almost two years to develop a shockproof and fully optimized casing and various watch parts. The first shock-resistant G-SHOCK went on sale in 1983.

Casio g-shock watch image
A White Casio G-Shock Watch

Revolutionary ideas such as a hollow case design, all-round protection and cushioning of important parts were the cornerstones of the G-SHOCK toughness and helped in realizing the shock-resistant design that was to completely change the conventional view of watches.

Digging deeper into Case Design

Case of G-Shock watches is designed to protect free-fall shocks. They used a bezel configuration to protect watch buttons and glass from impact. In this way, the watch is protected from every angle. The primary focus of every G-Shock watch is protection from shocks which is followed in all types of cases.

Urethane Band

Urethane provides protection against weathering, scratches, and temperature. The band protects against shocks from behind. Combination ratio of urethane resin is strictly followed as a strict standard which makes it neither too soft nor too hard. Thus a balance is maintained between toughness and comfortable wear-ability.

Shock-Resistant Metal Band

Shocks that arise due to drops are secured by the metal band made up of scratch-resistant pieces. Connection points of watch band are protected from shocks by making wider intervals between connection points and the band pieces along with allowing a more flexible 150-degree range of band movement.

Casio G-Shock Watch
Another Casio G-Shock Watch

Hollow-Structure Case

The inner module of the watch is floated to protect it from shocks. This hollow structure was a breakthrough idea that has followed every G-Shock watch case up until today.

Urethane bezel configuration provides shock protection to glass and buttons, from all directions. The crystal oscillator and some other key parts have been given extra protection by applying cushioning materials.

These protections to the body and interior module helped reach toughness of watch to the highest levels.

CASIO wanted to secure the watch from all types of shocks but not at the cost of increasing the size to a huge level. If urethane resin or any other shock-absorbent material had been used, then the case would have grown to immense proportions.

Intelligent design was proposed to overcome this problem by supporting the inner module at just a few points necessary, Thus creating a situation as if the module were floating in the air.

All-Directional Covering

Urethane Resin Bezel design protects glass and buttons from all directions, even with metal models having lower shock-absorption capabilities. Bezel and outer case in metal models are protected with cushioning materials as otherwise the inner workings of the module can get distorted upon sudden strong impact.


Casio’s G-Shock Torture Chamber

At Hamura R&D center, an hour’s drive from central Tokyo lays Casio’s G-Shock torture chamber. This is where Casio’s Top designers and engineers design some of the most cherished and toughest watches on the planet.

On the other side of the building lies a place dedicated to demolition experts. They spend their days trying to smash the watches, drown them in mud and electrocute them. They even stab their buttons thousands of times in a bath of synthetic sweat.

Image for Casio G-Shock torture chamber

One of the tests is to check the durability of coloring. For that, watches are rubbed against white shirts sleeves to see if they leave a stain. A more violent test places the watch under a 5kg brass hammer on a pedestal path.

The hammer swings in a devastating 180-degree arc towards the watch to test the strength of the face. A new piece is then analyzed for weak points and run the test again to expose them.

The most impressive test is conducted in a spring-mounted mechanical monster. It hurls the watch on a concrete slab, stimulating a drop from a tall building.

Another test is the pressurized underwater button endurance test for dive watches. While many manufacturers test their watches for water resistance. G-Shock does this test while pressing the buttons tens of thousands of times.

Even the latest limited-edition MRG-G2000HA-1A having a striking bronze bezel, inspired by the art of traditional Japanese sword making — must undergo the same barrage of violence and techno-brutality as all other G-Shocks.


Some common features of G-SHOCK watches

Being the toughest watches needs not to be left out from technical angles. G-Shock stands out in technical refinements as well with environment-friendly solar technology and Bluetooth® including GPS and radio technology — G-Shock always features state-of-the-art technology.

Non-Stop  Solar Power in G-Shock Watches

Non-Stop Solar Power

G-Shock has a very strong solar panel which converts even the weakest lighting into electric energy.

To overcome the high energy consumption, a rechargeable battery is used along with the panel to support the smooth operation.

With the solar battery in place, there’s no need to worry about running down of power source as it can get energy from even the smallest illumination of fluorescent.

Atomic Time Keeping in G-Shock Watches

Atomic Timekeeping

A Radio tower at Fort Collins, Colorado is transmitting radio waves carrying American Standard Time data. CASIO watches have Wave Ceptor technology which enables them to receive and intercept these signals and thus correct the time automatically.

It can automatically correct time wherever you go, and that too according to your available time zone. Thus these watches display exact time from coast to coast!

Sensor Technology in G-Shock Watches

Sensor Technology

G-Shock watches can detect sudden changes in natural phenomena with high-precision using miniature sensor technology.

In 2013, CASIO upgraded its Triple Sensor technology to the 3rd generation. These sensors are used for measuring direction, barometric pressure/altitude and temperature.

Tough Movement in G-Shock Watches

Tough Movement

CASIO G-Shock watches have a radio-controlled, solar-powered analog movement combined with tough Solar, multi-band 6, Auto hand home position correction and Hybrid Mount construction technology enables it to reach the highest level of reliability.

GPS in G-shock watches

Global Positioning System (GPS)

GPS features include:

  • Display accurate time wherever you go.
  • Receive GPS Signals for current location and time data.
  • Automatic time zone through analysis of current location information.
  • Show correct time with automatic daylight saving time status.

Real vs Fake G-Shock Watches

Now that you know well about the design & structure and the most common features of G-Shock watches, it’s time for you to learn how real G-Shock watches differ from the fake ones.

It’s generally not a problem when looking for original G-Shock watches on eBay and Amazon.

Packaging Manual

Fake ones don’t have the barcode or a sticker at the back of the box.

Always check the manual. Fake watches always come with wrongly printed material and even wrong instructions. The paper quality of the manual is also a lot thicker from the original.

The print quality of the original watch is much better and much legible than the fake one.

Warranty Card

Check the warranty card. It must come from an official warranty provider.

You can check the list of the G-Shock official providers for your region from the following link: https://www.casio-intl.com/in/en/support/gshock_warranties/

Watch Bezel

Fake one comes with a golden bezel instead of a black one, especially in G-SHOCK MUDMASTER GG-1000 Model.

Material

Material seems to be very similar to the original, except for the printing side. The fake one has a bit unaligned, blurry off-printing font. It’s not too obvious but you have to look closely.

Compass

Compass of the fake watch does not even work. Pressing the compass button will turn the seconds’ needle into a pointer facing North.

Buttons

The fake ones have very loose buttons and they have some gap in there. So when you go out in the field in rain and mud you might get dirt and water into the product.

Back-light

The original G-Shock watch is illuminated by a super illuminator or electro-luminescent and it lights up very evenly. Whereas the fake one has a high brightness but it’s not evenly distributed.

Back Cover

Fake one portrays out more while the original one is just flat and blends in with the wrist.


Conclusion

Red Casio G-Shock Watch
A Red Casio G-Shock Watch

After knowing all these facts we can confidently say that Casio G-shock watches are the toughest watches in the world. Also, their design gives a beautiful casual look. So whether you’re an athlete, army man or a casual/street fashion enthusiast, these watches will be the right choice for you.

Also read: Best Smartwatches for Athletes


Sources

Casio G-Shock Offical Website, https://www.gshock.com/technology/components

Leo Lewis. “Inside Casio’s G-Shock ‘torture chamber’”, Financial Times, September 26, 2018, https://www.ft.com/content/3c586102-7eae-11e8-af48-190d103e32a4