Casio has recently debuted a new version of its current-generation G-Shock MTGB2000 that combines a dark-colored case with a combination of lightweight materials such as carbon and glass fiber. Casio claims that these materials are up to 77% lighter than steel. The resulting watch is the MTGB2000YBD1, and it is certainly lighter than the Casio G-Shock MTG reference MTGB2000D-1A that I went hands-on with here. How much lighter is the MTGB2000YBD1? The other MTGB2000 that I previously covered weighed in at an already impressive (for a wristwatch on a bracelet) 156 grams. This new MTGB2000YBD1 weighs just 131 grams — noticeably lighter when handling.
Style-wise, the MTGB2000YBD1 (aka MTGB2000YBD) features dark gray-coated steel and a combination of carbon elements (such as for the sophisticated Carbon Core Guard case structure), glass fiber, and Casio’s own resin blends (such as for the inside-facing parts of the bracelet). The model is marked by a deep gray and red set of colors manifested both on the dial and in the case construction, which has horizontal lines of black and red. This is done via a sandwich process, where carbon and glass fiber elements are merged together.
Why is Casio spending all this time experimenting with different materials for its luxury MT-G product collection? Mainly to play with novel means of making watches more lightweight and more durable — the ongoing mission of G-Shock watches everywhere. What comes with using new materials is fresh style options, including colors and textures not always commonly used for watch cases. The emergence of carbon and other exotic non-metallic material blends have proved very tantalizing for timepiece designers given the fashion implications. Casio is prolific when it comes to experimenting along these lines, and while the brand’s even more high-end MR-G watches are luxury-priced, the MT-G collection combines many of Casio’s most advanced movements with materials that enthusiasts can get excited about.
The MTGB2000YBD1 shares the interesting angular case of the current-generation MTGB2000 product family, sized at 49.8mm-wide, 15.9mm-thick, and has a 55.1mm lug-to-lug distance. Over the analog dial is a domed and AR-coated sapphire crystal, while the tough case is water-resistant to 200 meters and can be easily thrown around as G-Shock timepieces can. This is really a wonderful blend between of a visually interesting luxury watch-wearing experience with the assurance of wearing an ultra-reliable, go-anywhere timepiece product. First, it is a G-Shock; next, it is a “nice watch.”
The case has a total of four pushers plus Casio’s smart crown. That can certainly be a little intimidating, but this generation of G-Shock products connects to a G-Shock smartphone app that makes setting and using watch features a breeze. The Bluetooth connection is optional, but it goes a long way in making the product both more convenient and more connected with today’s other gadgets and electronics that most people now carry with them.
Starting with Casio’s Tough Solar movement (powered by light), the module inside the watch also has a radio to receive signals from Atomic clock signals as a legacy means of keeping the watch on time in places with available radio signals from atomic clocks. The movement is designed with travelers in mind, focusing on having two 12-hour dials for the time on the watch face, along with dual AM/PM indicators and a function selector. Also, the date is part of the perpetual calendar system even if the dial only displays the date and day of the week. Other features include a stopwatch (chronograph) alarms and, of course, a precise world-time selection system.
Exposed carbon fiber prints on the lugs and the darker color choices make this particular MTGB2000YBD1 model strong and masculine-looking — a guise that Casio designers seem to love for their products. The “moody macho” look is a popular one in Japanese culture, and I love seeing how it is manifested in these timepieces. Contrast that with the rainbow-colored MTGB2000PH2A model (sold out already) that is also an MTGB2000 piece but with a totally different visual style.
Casio keeps things interesting with its higher-end models, such as the MTGB2000, by making sure that the various model versions aren’t just fashion variants from one another, but at times experiment with different materials and case constructions. Such details might escape many fans, but I personally think it is interesting that Casio is able to use different materials to create the same base watches (the MTGB2000, in this case) that have different performance and style outcomes. Price for the Casio G-Shock MTGB2000YBD1 watch is $1,200 USD. Learn more at the Casio G-Shock website here.