Sunday, February 10, 2013

G-Shock #6: Casio’s prelude to the 20th Anniversary.

The G-2300 and G-2310 models are somewhat forgotten models in the G-Shock range. Still there were about 15 different models released between 2000 and 2003. There were also two GL-201 G-Lide models, which were actually special G-2310 versions. In 2010 this model is picked up again and also a multiband Atomic model (capable of receiving the Atomic signal from transmitters in different parts of the world) was released.
The G-2300 was introduced as a mid sized basic model. For a long time I advised many people looking for a good rugged G-Shock with good functions a G-2300. You could buy them pretty cheap, but were packed with functions, including Tough Solar. An ideal daily beater.
In November 2001 Casio released a series of three G-2300DM models as “Street Fashion” models. Casio describes the look of the model that it has adopted the camouflage pattern as seen in street fashion. As you could have read in my article of the Maharishi G-Shock, camouflage has been in street fashion for many decades. In other words, it is always present in street fashion.
The G-2300DM models had pretty remarkable camouflages, specially the colors. The Desert camouflage model is the one with the most normal colors, but the deep red and deep blue versions are more fantasy camouflages. Most striking on the strap is the cloth patch that says “ G-Shock Resist since 1983”, a phrase often used on anniversary models. Although the anniversary models are commonly introduced about one year before the actual anniversary, I think this model was an early start to the celebration of the 20th anniversary. I have a desert camouflage version (which seem to be hiding pretty well in my collection, as I could not locate it after a thorough search) and several of this red version. In this article I will concentrate on the red camouflage model.
I have these Street Fashion models already for a long time. When I bought these, I was not a long time collector and information about G-Shock models was hard to get. The color tones of the desert and red camouflage were not quite usual in the Western world, so I assumed they were aimed primarily to the East Asian world, as color preferences there might vary from that of Europe or the US. Think about the beige/gold Jason, which was released in the winter models recently. That is also not a color you will find a lot in the Western world. The desert camo has a similar beige, almost green tone. This red Camouflage has a kind of coper red case. It’s pretty hard to describe the color, as there is simply not much reference material. The finish of the case is also metallic, like a spray paint is used with very small metal flakes. The red used on the strap is a deep red tone, which leans almost to maroon, a color tone I pretty much like on G-Shocks. My first G-Shock was maroon.
The double Velcro strap is attached to the case with special strap adapters. As the strap adapters from the 90‘s, as found on the DW-6900s, DW-5600s, DW-00X, etc, are a bit chunky and square, these new adapters (common used on several types of G-2XX0 type watches) are more subtile and streamlined. Although you wouldn’t immediately say so, the (upper) strap has still a width of 22mm. The non elastic under strap is 30 mm wide and has a long piece of Velcro from where the case is attached to the end of the strap.
As I mentioned before, the G-2300 models were equipped with a very functional module. I often referred this model as “The Smaller Raysman”, because it was the first basic model that was Tough Solar and had the same functions, plus world Time. I had several 2300’s already about 10 years ago, and my experience was that the watch itself was not only pretty tough, but also it’s module. Although I have never opened one, the storage battery seems to be the ML2016 which stores up to 25mAh. This looks not so much, but it can power the watch in total darkness for a several months. The watch does not have a Power Save function, but it has a manual Sleep Mode. Just press the Mode button for a few seconds, and the watch goes blank. Just a tip, if you have a G-2300 or a Raysman incoming, let it put into sleep mode, before it’s shipped and mark the watch as defect watch for watch parts.
The first G-2300’s were nice models, but I found them look a bit small. Actually it’s the way the case is designed, as the case dimensions are pretty much similar to the much larger looking DW-6900. The models with strap adapters however, specially with double Velcro straps, look bigger, because the case is positioned higher on the wrist.
So, what functions do we find on this watch. First of all, you’ll find the World Time mode. Not a huge number of cities, but with 29 cities in 27 timezones, I think the watch is most convenient in most cases. Like I have mentioned before about this feature on G-Shocks, it does not automatically apply DST, while there are a lot places in the world where DST applies in summer time.
The G-2300 has a Data Bank Mode, which is similar to what Casio calls the Tele Memo Mode. It has a memory that can store up to 30 data sets containing a name of maximal 8 characters and a number of 14 characters. Also, like I mentioned before in other articles of G-Shocks with a Tele Memo Mode, this function is nowadays not practically anymore, but in a time where mobile phones were (not mentioning the current generation smartphones) not common, it must have been a good function.
Always handy are the 5 independent Alarms. They cannot only be programmed to a certain time, but also to a date. This means, when you leave one digit blank, you can also use it as a 1-Month Alarm and a Monthly Alarm. Normally you leave the digits blank, so it operates as a Daily Alarm. Of course the Hourly Time Signal is present.
The Stopwatch Mode is acts like most other Stopwatch functions on G-Shocks, but it also has the possibility to use a 5 second countdown. This is called Auto Start. When this function is toggled on, the watch counts down the last three seconds before the start.
Finally we come to the Countdown Alarm mode. It is a usual 24 hour Countdown Timer, which can also be set as an Auto Repeat Countdown Timer.
Besides the normal modes, there is also a special hidden mode. This is the Auto Display Function. This function is intend to be used as a demonstration mode for shop displays. When this mode is activated, the display scrolls through the different modes, so it shows the different displays. As the watch is not functional in this mode, you probably never use it. Might you receive a Casio in such mode, check the manual how to leave “Auto Display Mode”. It can sometimes be tricky to find the right button combination. In this case, you enter the Auto Display Mode by first going to the Sleep Mode. The Sleep Mode is enabled when you press and hold the MODE button for a few seconds. In Sleep Mode press and hold the ADJUST button, until the watch beeps. It is now in Auto Display mode. To leave the Auto Display mode, simply press and hold ADJUST again for about two seconds.
The G-2300 is also equipped with the Full Auto Illuminator feature, which I find pretty cool. This feature is now found on all Tough Solar models, but with the introduction of the G-2300 it was pretty new. The Full Auto Illuminator function works like the Auto Illuminator, but only in a dark environment. It uses the solar panels to see if it is dark or not. You can toggle it on and off by push and holding the FORWARD button for about two seconds (of course, don’t forget to turn off the Auto Display Function, like I did). When the function is turned on, the EL light turns on when it’s dark and the arm is tilt about 40 degrees, while the arm is about parallel to the ground. This is about the position you use to view the time on your watch under normal conditions. When it’s light, the EL light stays off. I think it’s clear the EL backlight consumes quite some energy, so I recommend not to leave the Auto EL function on too much. On the other hand, you can always charge your battery again.
I do not exactly know why, but this watch was pretty suddenly periodically for sale in large numbers in East Asia and Great Britain around 2003 - 2006. My friend Alan Tribe has even written a short story about him finding this watch in Korea. I saw one or more of these even pop up in the UK not too long ago. They seem not very wanted and the prices for this model were pretty low. I guess somewhere between €50 and €80, but more likely €50 than €80. At the moment I seem to have three of this version. My desert camo version seems to be disappeared.
I am a bit puzzled what happened to the desert camouflage model. A few years ago we had some major revision done to our house and several workers of different companies were working under the house and the ground floor. A few weeks after the renovations, I missed two new G-Shocks, that were stored in a hall way upstairs (the renovations were under the ground floor and outside of the house). It might be that this desert camo model was catching sunlight back then and had been taken by someone during that time. Unfortunately I have no real hard proof the watches were there around that time, so I cannot sew anyone. Well, I am pretty sad missing that desert camo model, so if anyone knows where I can get this model for a friendly price somewhere, please let me know. I know someone who loves this model and will take care for it in his collection.

1 comment:

havell777 said...

Looking forward to your 50-G articles = splendid job, thank you ECR