Casio G-Shock GMW B5000GD-1 Review

by Chamath Gamage

Casio’s G-Shock (gravitational shock) watches have earnt a reputation for being one of the most robust and durable watches available on the market today. The concept of the sturdy G-Shock goes back to 1981, where a Casio Engineer named Kikuo Ibe was in charge of designing the G-shock prototypes. 

Kikuo Ibe wanted a watch that would have water-resistance of 10 bar (100 meters), triple 10 resistance (10-year battery life) and to be able to survive a 10 feet fall. Kikuo Ibe put together a team of 3 individuals to test 200 different prototypes, to be able to meet all three criteria as set out by the engineer. Unfortunately, the team after vigorous testing were not able to meet these requirements. 

The idea for the final design of the G-shock watch came when Kikuo Ibe observed a rubber ball in motion. He discovered that in a rubber ball, its centre is unaffected when the ball is moving and doesn’t suffer any shocks when it’s bouncing. Kikuo Ibe implemented this idea and was finally able to achieve all three criteria in the first G-shock model released in 1983; The G-shock DW5000C. 

There have been many different designs of G-shock watches over the years with nearly all of them sharing the core principles that originated from the very first model; toughness, durability and reliability. In 2018, Casio released a set of GMW-B5000 watches which came with a solid stainless steel face and bracelet or rubber strap to suit. The GMW-B5000 models have the iconic square face design and the shock resistance of the original G-shock (DW-5000C). The release of the GMW-B5000 models was so popular among consumers that they sold out almost immediately. The models were so sought after that Casio had to ramp up production on the GMW-B5000 to meet the demand of the public.  

In 2018, Casio released the GMW-B5000GD-1, a black ion-plated finish version of the original GMW-B5000. The all-black finish of the Casio G-Shock GMW-B5000GD-1 does make it stand out when compared to the rest of the G-Shock line up and gives the watch a more “sophisticated” look. While it may seem that it’s hard to tell the time in poorly lit surroundings due to the screen being blacked out as well, this is fixed with a quick rotation of the wrist, whereby the screen lights up automatically. The square case design, display and the bracelet also reflect the G-shock watches produced by Seiko during the early 1980s. 

The all-black look is also becoming a very fashionable piece and has a great look when seen in person. While it doesn’t Shine like the other full metal G-Shocks from the GMW-B5000 range, the GMW-B5000GD-1 with its all-black finish is by no means dull and does subtly give off a beautiful glossy shine.

To make sure the GMW-B5000GD-1 is highly shockproof, Casio has a fine resin cushioning material inserted between the stainless steel casing and the bezel. Casio has used innovative band connections which have the TROGAMID polymers to lessen the effects of impact on the band pipes. The final product is a shock-resistant structure, that is further protected by a steel case, providing a level of toughness most watches can only dream of. The steel bracelet is connected to the casing using a three-pronged structure, which helps distribute the pressure when under heaving shocks, ensuring it won’t unclip easily. The back casing of the GMW-B5000GD-1 is also coated in diamond-like carbon (DLC), to provide strong resistance to abrasion and scratches.

When worn on the wrist, the G-shock GMW-B5000GD-1 does feel like it carries a bit of weight thank to the highly protective casing and stainless steel bracelet, however, this is a good thing. It lets its presence be known. Thanks to the scratch-resistant coating, you don’t need to worry about getting scratches and nick from everyday wear. The watch can be worn for sporting events and even the gym as you can rest assured that it’ll hold up with the rough workouts you go through. 

The operational functions of the GMW-B5000GD-1 equally match the features that highlight the outside of the timepiece. One of these functions is the G-shock connected app. The G-shock connected smartphone app lets you control various functions from the watch, such as: reminder setting, time and place log, automatic time adjustment, world time for over 300 cities, localised calendar setting and even a phone finder. Other functions include being solar powered by Tough Solar and the other standard features that can be seen on G-shocks; 1/100-second stopwatch, daily alarm, full-auto LED backlight (Super Illuminator with a fade in and out function) while also have a 20 bar (200 meters) water resistance. 

The Casio G-shock GMW-B5000GD-1 comes packed with a lot of features that can be helpful to the everyday wearer. Combine this with a superior protective shell, shock resistance and elongated battery life, you can be rest assured this timepiece will keep up with whatever you put it through. 

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