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Authored by Ryan


Casio G-Shock DW-5600 Tough Solar (review)


I picked up a Tough Solar DW-5600 today, and thought I'd fill you in on a couple of details. I wrote a couple of friends via emails about this watch, and decided to add some scans (from all over Yahoo Japan) and post those here. I know Frank up in BC will be interested.







1.) There are two color choices (both are black, but the detailing varies), either the one which looks (color wise) like the DW-5600 re-issue -- it has white lettering "PROTECTION" and "G-SHOCK" on the protective cover, with a red line board on the window around the display, and a silver band buckle; the other says "PROTECTION" and "G-SHOCK" in gold (really kind of a mustard yellow), a white line board on the window around the display, and a gold colored buckle. I bought the latter since it is a bit more "stealthy" looking without the red on the dial and since I already have the re-issue.




2.) The LCD display on the re-issue is maybe about 1mm deep under the watch crystal on the re-issue; on the Tough Solar it is maybe about 3mm deep giving the display a real depth which is very attractive! Very impressive.

3.) The numbers are much larger on the Tough Solar display than on the re-issue. Very easy to read the large numbers. Also, the numbers are very BLACK even when looked at from an angle, unlike battery powered G-Shocks like the re-issue whose numbers kind of fade out when looked at from a severe angle.

4.) The countdown timer has a 99 hour ability!

5.) The dual time mode changes in 1/2 hour increments by pushing the button at the lower right hand side. This is very easy and slick!

6.) The band, clasp, and the watch itself are all "Made in Japan". On the re-issue, the watch was made in Japan but the band on mine was made in Indonesia.

I love this new Casio G-Shock DW-5600 Tough Solar! Time will tell, but I think this may be my favorite of any G-Shock I've ever owned.




It is much lighter than the re-issue (with the stainless steel case/caseback). You know you're wearing the re-issue. This one you just forget about. The key thing, though, is the depth of the dial, which ... makes it look big, I guess, while it is actually the same size as the re-issue or perhaps rides a bit closer to the wrist.

Forgot to mention that Casio re-designed the bottom half of the plastic case cover, making it mold around the metal buttons. They really did themselves proud, and are living up to their potential. It is so nice to see. They also slightly re-designed the top protective cover, and the shape of the back plate as well.

On the dual time, with the older models you had to press in the upper left "adjust" button until it beeped, then adjust the "dual time" up until the hour/minutes desired, then hit the upper left adjust button again until it beeped to lock in the time.

Now, you just go to the dual time mode, hit the bottom right button to change half hour increments (minutes stay aligned with original time zone) and scroll until you hit the time you desire. Really slick -- must be a
new chip I guess. I paid 9,800 yen for mine.

It's really great that you can go to the store and get a "best case" G-Shock again. In fact, I like almost all the new Tough Solar ones and think this is the Third Phase of the G-Shock saga, and maybe the best phase.

I guess the only way they could have improved on this one is to have made it a Waveceptor -- I suppose that will happen eventually.







It's my understanding (according to Carlos Perez) that this will be released in USA too. That one will say "WATER
RESIST 200m" on the dial instead of "Water Resist 20BAR."

Recently Casio has a pattern of releasing new models like this (under $100) with versions "made in Japan," then transferring production overseas after 6 months to 1 year so -- that is something you may want to consider regarding waiting.

I've not seen any Tough Solar models made outside of Japan so far, but when Casio starts making them for export to the USA market they may begin trying to make more profit by making them in a foreign country with
cheaper labor.

Regarding Seiko 200m auto divers made in Japan or made in Singapore, I don't notice much difference in quality; I've noticed a REAL difference in quality between Casios made in Japan or made outside of Japan.

Of course, this watch is solar powered and will never need a battery change. Amazing.

You will not regret buying one of these. Because tastes vary, although I often extol watches I buy and like I rarely say "you will not regret getting one." This time, I will say it. IF you are tempted, you will not regret getting it.

One thing none of the scans show is the three layers on the dial.

The glass has the red line, the blue "WATER RESIST 20 BAR" and all other lettering painted on the underside of the crystal.

Maybe 1mm or so under the crystal is the black solar pannel. None of the scans pick up that this pannel is not really black, but a silky/black/blue color which is very attractive. Finally, the the LCD display is another 1mm or so under the solar pannel. This layering can be noticed when glancing at the watch from an angle. It's hard to explain, but it is very attractive.

I too had stopped wearing this kind of watch for a long time, but with the re-issue, and now this one which I like even better, I'm back wearing them again. Regarding the old quartz/auto debate, if you were the main character in Tom Hank's movie "Castaway," or serving in Afganistan -- I don't see how any watch could compete with this one.

Although the Seiko 200m divers may be the best watches for under $200; this Casio has to be the best one on the planet selling under $100 in my opinion.

Yep, non-limited edition and Mr. Higuchi or Mr. Kobayashi can get one for you upon request I'm sure
 

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My watch on a bracelet. I always found the rubber straps gave out after a couple of years while the watch was still going strong. Pi$$ed me off so much until I found this metal/resin bracelet combo.

Been using it for years of military abuse, it's never let me down, and although a little bit pricey (circa £70) I'd buy another tomorrow if this one gave out.

Can be tricky to track them down though. I was watching one on Amazon but that's now showing as unavailable. Anyone else got any experience with better bracelets/straps for G-Shocks rather than the pretty pi$h stocker?
 

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Anyone have experience with the carbon fiber version of the strap? The watch itself is about 2x the price of "normal, but also comes with a titanium back and is a radio control.

It's a little different than the reviewed watch due to radio control, but strap appears the same: GW-S5600-1JF
 

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If you use a pair of 'JaysAndKays' 16mm lug G Shock adaptors then you can use any 'Nato' or single piece strap.
You can also get 'Bull Bars' for various G Shocks too.
 

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