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The Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A is the much anticipated result of a cooperation between the Japanese watch manufacturer and the makers of the famous Rubik’s Cube. Apparently, the two brands have also noticed how many similarities the G-SHOCK and the cult toy of the 80s have. So a watch of them can only be good, right?
A journey back in time
The Rubik’s Cube is a timeless toy. Developed in 1974 by its Hungarian inventor Ernő Rubik, the cult cube has captivated generations ever since. 6 colorful sides with a total of 26 stones, which can be rotated in different axes and must be returned to the basic position at the end – nothing is so simple and so complicated at the same time.
It is estimated that over 450 million copies of the Rubik’s Cube have been sold to date. One of them also came into my hands at the beginning of the 80s and never let me go. I was about 12 years old at the time and I remember that every one of my friends, including me, was constantly busy trying to solve the cube. We only just missed the later “Speedcubing” competitions. Nevertheless, today I can proudly claim to still own my first Rubik’s Cube. Somewhere it’s lying around and hasn’t lost any of its fascination during the past decades – but a corner.
Sorry. Rubik’s Cube is cult, like so many inventions of the 70s and 80s. Without a doubt, Casio’s G-SHOCK also belongs to this group. The robust digital watches had nothing at all to do with the timepieces our parents wore. Not so fragile, with an eye-catching design and many colors. Needless to say, I also had to have one of the clunky wristwatches.
A good watch or just a nostalgia bonus?
Both the G-SHOCK and the Rubik’s Cube have outlasted many things. The internet, for example. Or the 90s. But now, more than four decades after their market launch, the manufacturers Casio and Rubik’s Cube® have suddenly discovered that their products are not so dissimilar. Casio’s press release talks about “many synergies”. Indeed. It’s not just the decade that welds the watch and the Rubik’s Cube together. Certain similarities can be noticed in other respects as well. The robust design, the cult status and most recently a joint cooperation.
At the end of January, Casio and Rubik’s Cube® presented the G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A. Behind the usual bulky name is a wristwatch that kids of the 80s like me of course can’t say no to. With a colorful dial, an interchangeable bezel and various fan services, the new model should convince. In this watch review, I found out whether it succeeds.
The Rubik’s Cube (almost) comes with it
This opportunity had to be seized! Instead of a conventional box, the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A is presented in a packaging, which is partly transparent, partly the unmistakable design of the Rubik’s Cube. Much too beautiful to let it disappear in a drawer in the future. Who would like to see the presentation in more detail, by the way, can do so in my YouTube shorts video! Through the box you can already recognize the watch. In my case, the timepiece wears the white bezel, which can optionally be replaced with a black one. A pin to operate the very simple mechanism is included.
Basically, the special model is based on the GA-2100 series. Many watches in this collection are special in their own way, wearing a camouflage pattern or something similar. However, the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A is certainly the most extraordinary. The design of the dial depicts the iconic cube in red, blue and yellow. Further color accents can be found on the buckle, where green also comes into play.
The Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A on the wrist
In addition to the reduced functions of the digital watch, the size and weight of the new special model are also striking. I was very impressed when I put it on for the first time. Including the wristband, the watch weighs just 52 grams. The dimensions of 48.5 × 45.4 × 11.8 mm are also striking – at least in Casio’s world, where various other G-SHOCK representatives easily outperform the GAE-2100RC-1A. These features are typical of the GA-2100 series.
What I like a lot is the flexible interchangeable bezel. It happens more often that I get tired of one color after a while. With the black and white bezel, I can always change the look of the watch and thus my look in everyday life.
Unbreakable – the case
Nothing beats the robustness of a real G-SHOCK case. While this was a matter of course for me at the age of 12, I had to realize a few years later that other watches showed their first signs of wear much faster. Since then, I appreciate the “unbreakable” design of Casio SHOCKs. This is one of the parallels to the Rubik’s Cube (except for the missing corner of my cube). The resistance of the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A is realized by the so-called Carbon Core Guard Technology. For the production of the case, synthetic resin is used, to which carbon fibers are added. This ensures a low weight and a very solid structure, which is also extremely durable. The bezel is also manufactured using this process.
If you want to change the bezel, you only need the black pin that comes with the watch. You insert it into a small opening on the back of the case. It works like a lever and loosens the bezel, which you can then replace. On the front, a mineral crystal guarantees light weight, clarity and scratch resistance. Sapphire crystal? No, not in this price category. However, the mineral glass also serves its purpose and is completely sufficient here in my opinion.
In the water, the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A becomes a diver’s watch. In fact, the model is water resistant to a depth of 200 meters. Respect! The name G-SHOCK stands not only for shock resistance, but also for the ability to withstand high pressure.
The movement and all functions at a glance
To ensure that the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A is always supplied with sufficient power, the Japanese manufacturer installs a battery with a lifespan of about three years. However, a subsequent replacement is not particularly expensive. As usual for a quartz watch, the movement of this model also has a good accuracy of +/- 15 seconds per month, which mechanical calibers can’t keep up with.
The same goes for the plethora of features Casio is known for, which I’ll list below because there simply wouldn’t be room for them in the specs table. On board are a world time with 31 time zones and 48 cities, a stopwatch with several measurement modes, a countdown timer with a countdown from one second to 24 hours, an alarm function, an auto calendar, a 12 and 24 hour counter and much more, which you will certainly not always use to the full extent in everyday life. But it’s nice to have.
Dial and bracelet of the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A
Surprisingly, the more than a dozen functions are read on a dial that is minimalist in design, if you disregard the iconic cube design. Digital and analog displays are used on the dial, although the digital display handles most of the special functions. However, from experience, I can say that the hands and the day of the week display are just as important in everyday life. In the dark, all indices and displays are equipped with LED illumination or LED backlighting.
Praise goes to the Rubik’s Cube design, which in my opinion is very successfully woven in, and while it doesn’t really perform any function, it does evoke true retro feelings.
The Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A is worn on the classic synthetic resin strap, whose pin buckle has red and green accents. The bracelet is functional and offers a secure fit.
My conclusion about the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A
If you grew up in the 80s like me, you can’t get around this watch: the Casio G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A. The product of the cooperation between Casio and Rubik’s Cube® has become what many fans have wished for. A classic Casio with a lovingly crafted design that makes the retro heart beat faster. Add to that practical gimmicks like the interchangeable octagonal bezel that lets you change the look of your watch in seconds.
With the new G-SHOCK GAE-2100RC-1A, Casio is primarily targeting the generation that grew up with both “toys”. It’s hard to argue against the nostalgia bonus. But even apart from that, the timepiece is an all-around solid and very functional wristwatch. One last argument for buying it is the price. 149,- Euro is a price you can’t refuse. This is a watch you take with you – since the end of February, the model is available at retailers!