I haven't visited this forum for a while, but for the first time in years, I've bought a G-Shock.
G-Shocks allowed me to become a watch enthusiast - they were cheap enough that I didn't have to feel guilty about owning more than one or two watches. When I first came to the G-Shock forum, the forum favourite was the G-2310, the waveceptor watches were in their first generation with the GW-300 and GW-500, and the DW-6900 was thought of as a big watch.
Like many before me, I went looking for the perfect G-Shock. Naturally, this led to a steady stream of parcels arriving at my door for several years... Generally, I liked the simple models with 5600-type functions, but couldn't resist a few novelties along the way. At different times, my favourites included the DW-5600E, G-5600, G-2310, DW-9052, G-8000, GW-9100, GW-2500B and the 6900 that I cooked up following Buzzbait's recipe. Ultimately, I did find my perfect G-Shock - the G-2000.
And that was that. My interest shifted to conventional analogue watches and it's been a couple of years since I thought about G-Shocks.
Recently, I've been doing some decorating. At the end of one day, while scraping with my thumbnail at some paint spots on my Wempe, I thought: 'I should be wearing a cheap plastic watch, really...' My G-Shocks were gone. I still owned the G-2000, but it was in another country. Then a thought... I looked in a drawer, not sure if I still had it, but there it was - the DW-290 that had cost about the same as a round of drinks - still alive, still telling more or less the right time.
The DW-290 isn't a G-Shock, but putting it on and pressing the buttons brought it all back. The little 'chirrup' moving from mode to mode, the feel of the resin, the precision of the digits, the simple but funky practicality... Some part of my affection for G-Shocks was, like the half-forgotten DW-290, still functioning.
I was out of date with G-Shocks. I had noticed new models in shop windows but they all seemed to be huge. I was aware of the 'RAF' Aviator. I had seen some fashion makeovers of the 6900.
I went to the Casio website to do a bit of catching up: Casio's 'classic' category included waveceptor models, where once it would have been populated with 'DWs'; there were two new basic models - the GR-8900 and the GD-350; there were some new sensor models; there was a whole squadron of Aviators. I purposely didn't do any research in the G-Shock forum because I didn't want to know how the current models were perceived. I still haven't read any reviews of the newer models.
The new basic models were too big for me (and the GD-350, which could have been great, had the unfinished look of a prototype). Some of the Aviator models, as well as being too big, were seriously expensive. Casio still hadn't made a truly successful update of the 5600E - or a modern alternative to it. The price of the 5600E in Europe was still hard to fathom. Below £100, there wasn't much to choose from, beyond the venerable basic models that I had already owned.
It was interesting going through the catalogue, re-familiarising myself with the model numbers, remembering what I liked and didn't like about various models, but it was also a bit disappointing. It was tempting to think that Casio had spent several years thinking about analogue models, and about five minutes thinking about digital models.
There was just one watch, regardless of price, that was right for me - the GW-2310. Having more or less convinced myself that I needed a G-Shock again, I found one at half-price and bought it.