Sunday, August 11, 2013

G-Shock #33: It's a Bird! It's a Plane! It's a GA-110FC-1AER Crazy Colors!

Vivid colors. That was what Casio has in mind for the Crazy Colors collection of November 2011. Well, in my opinion it worked out nice with this red GA-110FC-1AER. It even could have been a kind on Lego watch, á la Dee & Ricky. Personally, I associate this model with Superman. In my head I see the bold red, yellow and blue title above the comics. Maybe it’s a coincidence, but it is a great color combo. You must almost feel like a super hero when you wear this watch.
In my opinion, most GA-110 models have more a cool look, than a functional one. Like I wrote a year ago about the Garish Black GA-110GB-1 model, a lot of them have unhandy colored hands, which makes it difficult to read time in a split second. On this GA-110FC it is a relief to see the hands are grey/white. Therefore they stick out pretty will against the multi colored dial. I think if you buy a ana-digi model, you probably buy it, because you want to read the time analog in the first place. Of course there are also the digital displays, but they can be partially blocked by the hands.
I think if you choose this, or any other GA-110 model, you probably choose looks over functionality. If you want an ana-digi model with a clearer dial, you might look at the GA-100 models. Frankly, I like the look of the GA-110 much more. I can’t really point anything, why I do not like the GA-100, so it must probably be just a personal opinion. I might maybe change my opinion of the GA-100 models about the GA-100SD (Desert Beige), which has a nice clear dial and amber displays. The GA-110 has a much busier dial. If you like this model, you probably like the lot of 3D details on the dial. I specially like the 90º rotated “Y” shape, which divides the dial in 2 digital displays and a “Speed Hand”.
The GA-110 model must be a favorite model. Not less than 15 models (one GA-111) were released after the introduction roughly 3 years ago. The GA-100 model has only seen about 8 models since it’s release. The popularity might be caused because of the lot of details in the dial, which gives possibilities for a lot color varieties. This “Crazy Colors” model is a nice example of a wild color variation design. Not really shouting colors, like the Hyper Colors models, but quiet mutually contrasting colors.
A curious bystander.
The playful colors of this G-Shock, quite well hide that this is actually a model with a lot of functions. In Timekeeping Mode, you can change the lower digital display between the current time and the date. The seconds are visible in both views. The upper display displays the day.
When Leaving the Timekeeping Mode, you enter the Stopwatch Mode. This is a 100 hour Stopwatch, but it also has a Tachymeter function. A Tachymeter is a Stopwatch function that calculates the speed, when a certain distance has been traveled. A distance can be input between 0.1 and 99.9. When the distance is set to 0.0, no speed calculation is performed when the Stopwatch function is used. The travelled distance has no unit. The unit you choose (meter, kilometer, mile) is the unit used in the speed, where the speed is measured in units per hour. For instance, the distance in 1.0 km, elapsed time is 20 seconds, the watch will show the speed is 180 km/h. You need to learn how to read speed before you use this function. The hundreds are shown un the upper display and there is also a 1000 units mark. It is possible to measure a speed up to 1998 units/h.
When I bought Lego bricks for a watch stand, I also bought the hard to find Bumble Bee Girl (Lego Minifigures Series 10). It's such a cute minifigure. 
The Stopwatch can be operated in 2 modes, Split TIme and Lap TIme. In Split Time you can use the Stopwatch as a normal Stopwatch. The Adjust button is used as a the Split button. In Lap Time, the Stopwatch resets itself and shows the speed and the number of the lap. In both modes the Stopwatch continues to run after approximately 12 seconds.
The operation of the Stopwatch is a bit unusual. I’m used that a Stopwatch is operated by the buttons on the right. Also, probably pretty personal, I miss very hard the button beeps while starting or stopping.
Next function on the GA-110FC is the Countdown Timer mode. It is my favorite mode on watches, as it helps me frequently to arrange waiting times efficiently, without forgetting processes at the lab. It is a 24 hour Countdown Timer and it can be set to an Auto-Repeat mode.
The GA-110 has also World Time on board. It’s the usual 48 cities and 29 time zones version. There is one cool extra feature. It is possible to swap the World TIme and Time Keeping time zones. So, if you are in London and fly for instance to New York, you simply go to World TIme on the plane and set World Time to NYC. Then push the two upper buttons (ADJUST and REVERSE) simultaneously. The watch beeps and the hands now set themselves to the new Time Keeping timezone and the time zone you started from, in this example London is shown as LON in the display. It’s a pretty handy function for people who travel a lot.
Finally there is also the ALARM function. There are 5 Alarms present, 4 normal Alarms, and one Snooze Alarm, which repeats the Alarm every 5 minutes, until it’s stopped. Of course the Hourly Signal is also present.
The dial of this watch can be illuminated by a LED at the bottom of the dial. Although the light is quite bright and shows the dial pretty clear, it is hard to read the displays. I think it would not have been hard to light the displays too with this LED if light transmitting plastics were used. I can imagine that there would have been room for that in this very large case. What’s handy is that the duration of the light can be changed between 1.5 and 3 seconds.
When I was at the headquarters of Kiks Tokyo in Shibuya December 2010, I saw this awesome sample T-Shirt. It was for the Spring collection 2011 and I told them to really release this Tee. As far as I know it was only a Japan release, but I somehow got this shirt a few months later. It's such an awesome print.
The red GA-11FC is a very nice looker, if you love bright colors. Although it is not as shouting as some other Crazy Colors models, it a model that gets noticed. It’s probably not a watch for every one or a watch that people would wear for formal occasions. It might even be that Casio aimed this watch for younger people, but personally, at age 46, I don’t feel too old to wear it. Maybe it’s also a great watch if you are a fan of Superman. It just has the right colors. Some down points of this watch are the absence of the Button Beep and the LED light, which lights the digital displays poorly. For the rest, I like this watch a lot. You get an awful lot of watch for your money.
I got this watch from TikTox in the UK. I see that this watch is not in stock anymore, but it is of course already one and a half year old release. The price was around £100. The retail price of this watch was around €129 and I guess it was also $129.- in the US. You still can find this watch, but frankly for slightly higher prices than the normal retail price.


Marcus said...

Hello Sjors:

Hope you're doing cool!

I just ordered this very G-Shock GA-110FC-1AER and I remembered that you did this post of it last year; and who else but you to ask a question that is kicking in my head like a crazy horse for days now.

Why is this model color coded -1- black, when it is as -4- red as it gets?

I haven't found a place in the Internet talking about this, any place where someone ask the question or comment about this model and how it is out of the normal Casio color code patterns.

Thanks in advance for your kind attention to my question. All the best always!


Unknown said...

Hello Marcos,

The model number on this model is indeed puzzling. I had, of course, be thinking about that. Ithink that in very rare occasions Casio doesn't follow the color code. I agree that an -1 suffix (-1A or eventually -1B) would be more consequent. Maybe that the color of the bezel and/or straps had been altered. Maybe it was just done to create a mystery :-D

Kind regards,


Vic said...

Hi Sjors,

I'm one of your new fans, really enjoyed reading your articles. Like you, I also love the GA110 design, the "industrial" look is so cool.

Just wondering if you will be doing an article about the GA110FC-1A's brother, the GA110FC-2A (Blue).

You mentioned on several occasions that your fave color is red, but since you also enjoy the GA110s, I figured you might get this one sooner or later for your collection.

Anyway, whatever is your next G article, I'm sure that I will enjoy reading it :)