G-SHOCK’s brand identity has, for over 35 years, been that of one of the worldwide leaders in function-first timepieces that can stand up to anything but can still be acquired for a relatively accessible price. However, in recent years, we’ve noticed an exciting trend start to take place within G-SHOCK’s catalog. We’ve not only seen the brand grow from its strictly utilitarian roots with stylish, limited edition releases that use its quintessential “square” form factor (like the recently released GMWB5000CS-1 “Grid Tunnel”), but also a significant amount of R&D being placed toward the expansion of G-SHOCK’s more premium MT-G and MR-G lines. These collections build on the tough-as-nails G-SHOCK platform by using more premium materials, finishing techniques that often evoke traditional Japanese craftsmanship, and the brand’s full suite of top-notch technical specifications.
The watches in the MT-G and MR-G series are nothing like the classic G-SHOCKs you know and love, other than that they’re nigh-indestructible. While the internal movement modules of these watches may still be quartz, it’s quartz that uses the brand’s Multi-Band 6 timekeeping to receive signals from atomic radio towers around the world. The watches not only offer Bluetooth connectivity to streamline the user experience through the brand’s Connected smartphone app, but some can also connect to GPS. The resin material often associated with G-SHOCK cases and straps disappears in favor of hardened titanium, carbon fiber, stainless steel, or fluoro-elastomer rubber. These watches also feature fully analog displays on the dials that are packed with complications and multiple independent handsets, resulting in an impressive amount of continuous kinetic action on the wrist.
The MT-G and MR-G are an integral part of the future of G-SHOCK, and we’re excited to add three of the brand’s most recent releases in these lines to the HODINKEE Shop today.
The G-SHOCK MT-G Collection
The MT-G family was added to the greater G-SHOCK collection in 1999. The “MT” actually stands for “Metal Twisted,” as the line was originally introduced to function as a home for G-SHOCKs with hybrid case constructions, with early variants often featuring stainless steel and resin combinations. That original intent remains true to this day, as the two MT-G watches we’re adding to the HODINKEE Shop feature either carbon fiber or stainless steel, in addition to resin, in the case and bezel build.
The MTGB1000XBD-1 was released late last year as a standard production model. It features a black IP-coated steel and resin case with G-SHOCK’s first-ever application of layered carbon fiber on the bezel. Carbon fiber has the benefit of being lightweight, while also extremely hard-wearing, all factors that make sense for a G-SHOCK where the goal is to survive anything and everything one might encounter on a daily basis. Carbon fiber’s resolute toughness does make it harder to manufacture, and it took G-SHOCK over a year of development before finalizing this design. The bezel is layered in a way that alternates between black and red sheets of carbon fiber, which are visible through the watch’s side profile (see image below). G-SHOCK further enhanced the watch through its exterior finish, which features a blend of soft brushing and polishing on the bezel and lugs and knurling on the crown. Parts of the lugs and the eight o’clock pusher (which is used for connecting the watch to your smartphone) have undergone a red anodized finish.
But it doesn’t stop there. The dial, with its crosshatch-like finish, is quite complex, but the information is arranged in a straightforward way that allows time to be told at a glance. The bezel’s flange features the UTC codes of the cities that represent the world’s major time zones. The multi-function sub-dial at nine o’clock combines the day-of-the-week with a power-reserve and daylight saving time display as well as the mode indicator for the stopwatch (ST), countdown timer (TR), and alarm functions (AL). The six o’clock sub-dial shows the dual time zone along with a small, overlapping A.M./P.M. indicator to its upper right. The 24-hour display is connected to the time on the central handset and occupies the 12 o’clock sub-dial. Finally, the date appears in an aperture near four o’clock.
As one of G-SHOCK’s highest-end watches, the MT-G features all of the brand’s latest technical feats, including Bluetooth connectivity to the G-SHOCK Connected app, Tough Solar charging, and Multi-Band 6 atomic timekeeping. The solar-powered movement module inside utilizes a five-motor drive that includes a dual-coil motor to drive each hand and handset independently. While it’s important to realize the benefits that the Connected app offers through Bluetooth, all of the watch’s functions can be adjusted manually. Most of its capabilities get started by engaging with the eight o’clock mode pusher. Click it once, and you’re now able to use the stopwatch; twice, and you’ve engaged the countdown timer; three times, and you can set the alarm using the world-time dial; and a fourth click will indicate the power reserve at nine o’clock. Finally, the UTC codes spread around the dial allow for simple manual setting of the second time zone. Once the crown is out in its first position, the central seconds hand will immediately indicate on the flange which time zone is currently displayed on the world-time sub-dial. Rotate the crown until the seconds hand is pointing toward the desired new time zone, and the handset will automatically adjust. It’s the same for setting the central home time hands, except the crown needs to be in its second position.
In addition to the MTGB1000XBD-1, we’re also adding the brand new MTGB1000TJ-1A Formless Tai-Chi Limited Edition to the HODINKEE Shop today. G-SHOCK collaborated with the Chinese artist Chen Yingjie on the design of this new watch. Chen Yingjie’s work is influenced by a combination of eastern ink painting and western street art, resulting in an attractive, monochrome grey MT-G timepiece. The exact theme of the watch is influenced by the philosophy of Formless Tai-Chi, which describes the duality of yin and yang and “the concept that all natural things and laws in the world change with the flow of time,” according to G-SHOCK.
Chen Yingjie selected the MTG-B1000 model specifically for his collaboration based on its potential hybrid of different metals. The watch’s thematic elements are expressed through the resin case and bezel of the watch, which has undergone an IP-coating with special printings and engravings designed by Chen Yingjie. It’s a great-looking, more nuanced take on the MT-G platform, but from a technical perspective, it is otherwise identical to other MT-G models.
The MTGB1000XBD-1 is priced at $ 1,200, and the MTGB1000TJ-1A at $ 1,000. Both are available now in the HODINKEE Shop.
The G-SHOCK MR-G Collection
The MR-G takes the technical and material innovations of the MT-G line and pushes G-SHOCK even further in the direction of prestige watchmaking. As a flagship offering for G-SHOCK since its 1996 debut, the MR-G (“M” for “Majesty”; “R” for “Reality”) is the most advanced and technically impressive member of the G-SHOCK family available today, and we’re adding a single model to the HODINKEE Shop.
The MRG-G2000R-1A is the first G-SHOCK to be equipped with a Dura Soft Fluoro-Rubber Band. The strap is textured with a traditional Japanese Bishamon Kikko pattern, that combines hexagonal shapes into groups of three. The watch’s titanium case has undergone a deep-layer hardening process, making it four or five times more durable than standard titanium. The case is also treated with titanium carbide, to make it more resistant to abrasions that might otherwise have appeared over time. The bezel and buckle, also made of titanium, have received a DLC-coating, and the crystal is made of scratch-proof sapphire. The case features attractive warm-colored accents, which help accentuate the watch’s tentpole position without overpowering its design.
The Dura Soft Fluoro-Rubber Band and the titanium case are connected via the first use of the “L/R-ΔLoc,” or Delta Lock, band-fastening mechanism, which Casio developed with a Japanese firm called NejiLaw, a company known for its precision manufacturing of extra-secure screws. The Delta Lock system involves two nuts that lock together and spin in opposite directions, preventing any natural loosening that would occur over time due to vibration, shock, or other physical disturbances. Although the MRG-G2000R-1A has a far different look and feel than the G-SHOCKs you might be used to, it is a G-SHOCK at the end of the day, and long-lasting robustness will always be an integral part of the formula.
While the MRG-G2000R-1A’s fit and finish are clearly of superlative status, the watch’s features are where it shines. The time is automatically adjusted through either Bluetooth or GPS, and the history of the watch’s time adjustments and time-zone changes can be checked through the G-SHOCK Connected app, which is specially calibrated for the MRG-G2000R-1A’s impressive feature set. There’s also Dual Dial World Time, which displays the times in two cities on the dial, and Tough Solar charging to ensure the watch never requires a new movement module. The features also include an airplane mode, a Super Illuminator LED light (in addition to the Neo Brite-filled handset), daily alarm, a full-automatic calendar (until 2099), a stopwatch, and a countdown timer.
This is one of the most sophisticated and feature-rich G-SHOCKS ever built. The titanium case, the sapphire crystal, and the fluoro-rubber strap all place it above similar G-SHOCKs strictly from a material standpoint, and the watch has basically the full range of technical attributes G-SHOCK has become known for in recent years. If there was a single watch that epitomized how much G-SHOCK has evolved in its 37-year history, we think it would look very close to the MRG-G2000R-1A. It’s priced at $ 3,000 and is available now.
Discover The G-SHOCK MT-G And MR-G Models In The HODINKEE Shop
G-SHOCK has maintained an authentic approach to watchmaking over its history that stands in clear contrast to many other brands. The company was built on a utilitarian mantra focused on function-forward design above all else, which remains true today. G-SHOCK has never reinvented what it stands for – because it has never had to. It’s only improved and enhanced its founding principles, with more impressive technical attributes and a greater eye toward aesthetics. The MT-G and MR-G lines continue to break new ground for G-SHOCK, representing an essential part of the brand’s catalog where balancing innovation, design, and wearability are key. Learn more about the G-SHOCK MT-G and MR-G watches in the HODINKEE Shop.