Sunday, August 21, 2011

G-Shock #34: G-Liding into the bloo

 The G-Lide series finds it origin in the X-Treme series of Japan. The first X-Treme models were released in 1996. Similar models were also released worldwide, under the series name G-Lide. In 1998 the G-Lide series were also introduced on the Japanese marked, but until 1999 G-Lide models were released under the X-Treme G-Lide flag.
 A nice day on the beach, good occasion to bring my turquoise G-Lide with me. 
Beach gear.
As the names of the series says, it’s about extreme board sports. With different models Casio aims for skateboarders, surfers and snowboarders. The robust build G-Shocks could withstand the extreme conditions they are exposed to. For skateboarding it’s the extreme shocks when a trick doesn’t work out the way it supposed to be, with snowboarding the extreme cold conditions in the snow and with surfing the water resistance. Surfing is getting more extreme with kite surfing. Casio is sponsoring the kite surfers Bastien Bollard (F) and World Champion 2009 Kevin Langeree (NL). I would love to see Casio bringing out a signature model of one of these kite surfers.
 Above Bastien Bollard, below Kevin Langeree
This G-Shock model is dedicated to surf sports and was released as spring-summer model in 2005. These G-Lide models came in 4 color variations. This one, the GL-7500-2AVDR, another blue (sky blue -2BVDR) version, a red and a yellow version. These models were only released outside Japan. Also two special models were released. These were the “Hawaiian Pro Design” models of Donald Takayama. I have written about the red version (GL-7500HD) before on 50 Gs. These models were by the way also released as a spring/summer model of 2005 in the US.
These GL-7500 models were pretty easy to obtain in 2005 several years later. It took Casio until 2008 to come up with new G-Lide models, so that’s when these GL-7500’s disappeared from the marked. I got this G-Shock in a batch of G-Shocks I bought from the sales forum on WatchUSeek. A few months later I got the other blue version, also in a batch of 2 G-Shocks. I gave that blue model away to a student who liked the color of this watch, as I wasn’t interested in this model and got the other one (a G-Metallix) for a very cheap price.
 Although I tried, I never got the red and the yellow model. A lot of these G-Lides were on auction on eBay with starting prices from $1.- and ending often very low, in the $25 - $40 range at that time. Only when I was bidding, these G-Lides went away for a little higher price. It’s a pity, because the red and yellow versions look pretty good, but that’s always as a G-Shock is getting hard to find.
The GL-7500 was made for surfers and people with other water hobbies. You can easily tell, because this model has a Tidegraph and a Tidegraph is pretty useless when you are snowboarding or skateboarding. Unique on this model is that the Tidegraph is facultative. It is placed in the upper matrix display. The part that is used for the Tidegraph can also be used to display the day of the week, the date is always shown in Timekeeping mode. Besides the G-Lide models, Casio also released basic G-7500 models. These were looking similar, but didn’t have the Tidegrapgh and the Moon Phase function. Instead these models have a Telememo function. For me it’s clear, I do not use the Telememo function, as mobile phones already can take that feature, let go smartphones. When they also only come in black and black, the choice for me is easy. These G-Lide models are way better for me than the basic G-7500. (Note there was a limited cream/white G-7501, which looks great).
The G-7500 and GL-7500 were the first models that featured the Vibration Alarm. The Vibration Alarm was only also available on the GW-400 Silencer models. Unfortunately I don’t own a Silencer. At that time Waveceptor models were not multi-band. The Silencer is only three band (actually two, since one Japanese transmitter uses the same frequency as the US transmitter) so the Waveceptor function cannot be used in Europe. As this model has a nice look (specially the first Hawaiian Lifeguard model in very light yellow) I hope Casio will make a multi band version in the future, but since only 6 models have been released since 2005 (I miss the white version on GPS, so that shows only 5), I think that won’t ever happen. Since the Vibration Alarm wasn’t used in newer models, I also don’t think this feature will return on future models. It’s a pity, since the vibration alarm can be a solution in noisy environments or in places where discrete silence is appreciated. Maybe the vibration Alarm won’t wake you in your deepest sleep, but it’s pretty strong. You got to get used to it, because it’s a strange feeling on your arm (it also works on the hourly signal).
The GL-7500 operates a little different from most G-Shocks. While most G-Shocks have 4 or 5 button controls, you’ll find and amazing 6 buttons on this watch. An extra button is placed in the middle of the right side of the watch. This extra button is in Timekeeping Mode used for toggling between the day and Tidegrapgh, while in other mode this button is uses as Start/Stop button. The “Reverse” button (upper right) is used as reset button. If this watch is your only watch, it is probably easy in use, but I think 5 button operation had been good enough too. In Stopwatch and Countdown Timer mode the “Forward” button (lower right) has no function.
The GL-7500 uses the 2941 module. What’s on board of this module. When pressing the “Mode” button (the usual lower left) you can cycle through the Tide mode, World Time mode, Countdown Timer mode Alarm mode and Stopwatch mode. It seems a pretty complete watch. In Tide mode you can see the tide at a selected time. Here comes the extra sixth button in handy. The sixth button can choose the hour, while the Forward and Reverse button can change the date. The watch can show time of 29 cities in 28 time zones in the World Time mode. No cities are assigned to time zones GMT-1 and GMT-2. The watch has three normal alarms and a Snooze Alarm (four alarms in total). Of course there is also the hourly chime. The Stopwatch Mode has the usual 24 hour stopwatch, but the Countdown Timer has only a capacity of 60 minutes, which is, in my humble opinion, too short. On the other hand, this Countdown Timer can be programmed with a rest period. This is ideal for interval training. For instance if you want to run for 5 minutes and then walk for 2 minutes and repeat that cycle several times, you just have to program the countdown time to 5’00” and RST (Rest) to 2’00” and set the Countdown Timer to Auto Repeat.
 I think I should do an article on programming Tidegraphs, as this watch needs to be programmed with the right Longitude setting and Lunitidal Interval. You can calculate this interval setting if you know when the moon is at the highest point and the next high tide. It might be a little research, but once you’ve found and calculated the details, you can use this forever on your location.
 Although the strap feels a bit stiff, it fits like a glove around my wrist. Due to its streamlined design, it’s hard to tell where the case ends and the strap begins. There are all kind of ribbed structures on the outside and inside of the strap. I think this is done to allow the band to dry quicker, specially between the arm and the strap.
Although these G-Lide models were available for about 3 years, it’s pretty hard to find one now. On the other hand, it was a cheap model. Some people loved it, me included, but you almost never hear about one now, which is a pity. In the past few years it seems there are a lot new G-Shock collectors that seem to aim for the label Limited Edition DW-6900’s buy them and try to sell them ASAP for double the money then that they are interested in the whole G-Shock history. Well, the side effect is that if you find one of these, you’ll probably won’t end up broke. If one is offered, expect a price around $50.- - $70., which is a cool price for this watch that can G-Lide you into the X-Treme!


sufro said...

Hey there! Is there by any chance I can buy this in singapore? Or any website you could recommend me on where to buy this model? Wanna get this for my bro's birthday. Hope to hear from you thank you. And I follow your blog its really exciting :)

Sjors said...

Hi Sufro,

This model and the yellow and red version) are very difficult to find on-line. I do not know how this is in Singapore in the shops.

If you don't mind the Tidegraph and the G-Lide lettering, you can still find the G-7510. It's available in black and blue. Try a search on eBay and you'll see several of these appear for very friendly prices.



Gary in NYC said...

I've long wanted this particular model, because of the nice middle blue color, but I have yet to see it available on the used market.

Does the tide graph seem to be just as accurate as on more recent models?