Sunday, November 4, 2012

G-Shock #45: The Return of the Jelly G: Clot x G-Shock

Casio not only put out the Rising Red series to celebrate the 30th Anniversary, but also brought out collaboration models. The first was the Eric Haze model, released in September, the second was released very recent end October. It’s the Clot x G-Shock collaboration model.
A Clot x Disney collaboration with design of Madsaki
A recent Clot x Converse collaboration.
Clot is an urban lifestyle business from Hong Kong, including music, fashion, design and retail. It’s probably best known for their street wear brand and their Juice stores in Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai and Taipei. It is founded by Kevin Poon and Edison Chen, a Hong Kong based singer, rapper and actor. Clot started in 2003. The name Clot refers to friends and people coming together with inspiration make ideas clot together into a conglomerate of new ideas and a new way of lifestyle. I think the Clot logo quite represents this idea, as it looks like the letters are clotted together in a tight (almost 2 way) symmetric design. They had designed in collaboration with big brands, as Converse, Nike, Disney and now even with Casio G-Shock with this fantastic looking model.
This Lego man is in fact quite an important prop in this article (^-^)
The Clot x G-Shock is not only to celebrate G-Shock’s 30th anniversary, but according to the Clot website also for the 8th anniversary of their brand. As Clot was founded in 2003, I think this could be a mistake. I think it should have been their (upcoming) 10th anniversary, as G-Shock, first release at April 1983, is already celebrating their 30th anniversary too.
It's not the first Clot x G-Shock collaboration. In January 2011 they released a G-Shock collab, which was primarily a G-001-1AJF with a small Clot logo on the strap. Not a real shocking new model, like the DW-6900CL. Of the first collaboration 25 went to family and friends, the other 25 were sold in the Juice stores.
This G-Shock is not just another collaboration, but it’s also the return of the “jelly” (translucent) G-Shock models, which we haven’t seen for quite a while. I think the last translucent model was the I.C.E.R.C. Gulfman of 2008. Casio will release soon (if I’m right in January in Europe) a clear jelly model in collaboration with the Stevie William’s Skate Brand DGK.
A very limited amount, I believe it were 100, was sold in a special plexiglass display case. These limited models stand apart from the regular model not only by the case, but they also feature a black buckle instead of the regular silver buckle and were meant to be sold in the Juice retail shops only. A very small number of these special boxes were also sold via the Juice on-line store and sold out almost immediately. I unfortunately found out too late, and moreover, I had already ordered the watch in Japan as I didn’t want to miss this one. I have a big weakness for red and yellow G-Shocks, as you probably already know.
The regular Clot collaboration G-Shock does come in a beautiful matte black box and matte black tin. Both the box as the tin feature the Clot logo and the G-Shock logo, printed in shiny black. The tin also shows the red logo with a dragon, as 2012 is the Chinese Year of the Dragon. Because I have the Japanese model, I have the also the Japanese manual of the 3230 module folded in the box. Probably easier than the international multi-language booklets to put in the box.
The real beauty is seen when the tin is opened for the first time and the small plastic protective bag is removed. Because of the tin and foam form a black background, the resin seems to light up as it catches and transduce the light through the resin, an effect observed most beautifully in dim light conditions. That’s why I did a special photo shoot with a friend, as I knew she had black furniture, which would be a perfect backdrop in the photo’s.
There was one drawback for the photo shoot. The day before my Sigma 50 mm macro lens stopped functioning suddenly. As I am pretty helpless without a macro lens, I had to buy a new one. On the day of the photo shoot I got my Canon 100 mm Macro lens in the house, but I was about a new Frogman, or three special G-Shocks lighter. It all works a little different, but I think the result is pretty well. That will be no G-Shock purchases for a long while, I’m afraid…
The face plate of this G-Shock is black with nice orange accents around the eyes and on the edge of the crystal. It features an alternative Clot logo, where you normally find the text CASIO and SHOCK RESIST. The Casio Brand name is moved to the bottom, where you normally find WATER 20 BAR RESISTANT. Well, this could be skipped as it is also stamped on the back. The display is somewhat reddish, but it’s even better when the EL is activated. The EL backlight is red and shows the regular CLOT logo, and it looks awesome. A nice challenge for my new macro lens. For those who wonder how I manage to get the backlight design without the digits, it’s pretty simple. The normal viewing angle of a wristwatch is from the bottom left. You will notice that G-Shock digits are always sharp when is observed from the left and the bottom. The digits get a little dim when you observe them from the right. If the EL is activated, they almost seem to disappear.
The 3230 module is the updated module of the 1289 module. There is no difference in operating, only the pre-programmed calendar is now programmed until the end of 2099, instead of 2039. And before I get a comment from Yschow again, indeed, the 1289 module can be programmed from January 1995, while the 3230 module this is from January 2000.
There is probably not one collaboration that proud of being made in China.
The functions are basic, but good. Besides Time Keeping, you have an Alarm Mode, a 24 hour Stopwatch Mode and a 24 hour Countdown Timer Mode.
The Alarm Mode has one alarm and of course the Hourly Chime. The Alarm can be set as Daily Alarm, Date Alarm, 1-Month Alarm and a Monthly Alarm, depending what is chosen or left out in the date area of the Alarm Mode. The Countdown Timer has an Auto Repeat feature. Additionally the watch has also a Flash function. It seems toggled off on my photo’s and I am not really sure if this is default on a 3230 module (it is on the 1289 module).
The sale of this model has only been started about two weeks now, so I cannot tell anything about the availability. It is release as a regular collaboration model in Japan as far as I know and it is of course also sold in Hong Kong. I know this model is not intend for sale in The Netherlands, but I think it will not be available in Europe either, but you never know. The main argument I heard about the watch being released in The Netherlands is the fact that jelly resin parts yellow or discolor over time. You can see this as a kind of wabi (Japanese term for wear and tear, which gives a G-Shock a tough character). However, it seems that the DGK will come to Europe. Prices seem to vary way up, although I just managed to buy it for just under retail price, which is ¥13500 in Japan (€135) via Higuchi-inc in Oita, Japan. It is a sharp price for a delicious looking collaboration G-Shock.


Unknown said...

Great review as always. One clarification, though. Casio recently released a blue jelly 6900 with the GR series. I believe it was the G6900GR-2. I do hope Casio continues to drop a few other "jellies" from time to time!!

Unknown said...

Hello Stranger,

I suspected I forgot a jelly model. Indeed, there was a 2nd Green Collection series. It was not released in Japan, so it is not in GPS (and the new interface is maybe better, but also harder to search quick). If I'm rght, these models were only released in East Asia (Singapore, Hong Kong and maybe Malaysia).