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I have to admit I’m kind of a G-Shock junkie. I started collecting them a few years ago and can’t seem to stop (in fact my first ever watch as a teenager was a G-Shock). I like them because they’re stylish, affordable and rugged, oh and some of them have radio-controlled time, which is really useful if you live in a multi-band country like the UK (this watch isn’t multi-band capable though).
An entry level G-Shock model, the GA-100-1A1 has a standard G-Shock feature set. It’s big, military-styled, and comes with 200m water resist. It’s runs the Casio Module 5081. I have quite large 18cm wrists, so I like big watches generally and don’t mind the oversized nature of many G-shock timepieces.
What caught my eye with this model was the all-black design with contrasting white hands. I think it looks striking yet sophisticated, compared with some of the more ‘in your face’ models. It’s obviously a casual, sporty watch though, and isn’t intended to be dressed up. You’re supposed to take it outdoors and put it to the elements.
- Brand: Casio
- Movement: Quartz
- Analogue-digital display
- Mineral glass crystal
- Case: resin with stainless back
- Band: resin
- Dimensions: 55 x 51.2 x 16.9mm
- Water resistance: 200m
- Weight: 70g
- Features: world time, stopwatch, countdown timer, auto light, alarm, auto calendar, date display
Full spec on Casio’s website.
I am critical of many dual digital-analogue displays; I think it can make the face too cluttered and render it more difficult to actually read the time! (ironically). On this model, though, the dark dial and negative display contrasts significantly with the white hands, making it easy to tell the time in most conditions (reading the hands that is, the negative display is generally hard to see). I should point out the hands are not lumed, disappointingly.
The polymer resin band is really comfy; it’s strong yet supple. I’ve tried many plastic/polymer watch straps from various brands and I do think Casio’s generally have the best combination of comfort and durability. The watch crystal is mineral glass, and I don’t recall having many glare issues.
I don’t frequently use functions like stopwatch and alarms etc, but I do swim with watches, and I took it in the sea and pool frequently on holiday and it held up fine (it has 200m water resist so it should do!). It’s also taken a beating and copious amounts of sand and mud. The beauty of G-shocks are their ruggedness and ability to withstand all conditions; I never feel like I could damage them.
- Sleek ‘matt’ black military design with contrasting white hands
- Affordable price
- Feature packed for price point
- 200m water resistance
- Large but not heavy
- Very comfortable resin strap
- Negative digital display difficult to read even in daylight
- Poor LED light (does not illuminate the digital display)
- Hands and markers not lumed
This watch does what it says on the tin. I’ve swam with it for 3 weeks in Thailand, bashed it against multiple walls and objects (accidentally), took it off road go-karting with mud and dirt flying everywhere and it’s still going strong with hardly any signs of use. The battery quartz movement ensures strong accuracy, and it’s price point makes it a solid purchase for casual and outdoor activity uses. I strongly recommend this watch as an everyday or weekend beater.
You can purchase it from Amazon here.
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