G-SHOCK Skeleton Review

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G-SHOCK Skeleton in the, uh, flesh

Remember the 80’s? From the G-SHOCK website: Skeleton digital and analog-digital watches combine semi-transparent resin with metallic colors to capture a look inspired by the 80’s. In this case, inspiration manifests itself in no less than thirteen forms. I chose the iconic three-eyed 6900 version with a metallic bezel (GM6900SCM-1) . . .

G-SHOCK Skeleton watch selection

This review won’t be as long as my necessarily detailed Ana-Frog review. The 6900 Skeleton is long on style and, for a G-SHOCK, short on features. Functionally, it’s a simple digital watch. It doesn’t include the solar battery charging, atomic clock time sync, or the powersave mode I’ve come to depend on.

The list of features is short: time, day / date, 1 alarm, 1 countdown timer, and a stopwatch. The end. One nice feature: the current time continues to display off to the side (upper right quadrant) during the stopwatch and timer modes.

closeup

The G-SHOCK website lists a Flash Alert feature, which “flashes with buzzer that sounds for alarms, hourly time signals.” There is no such thing on the watch (nor mentioned in the manual).   CORRECTION:  If the backlight function is turned on, the backlight flashes during alarm, countdown timer, and hourly signal alerts.  By “buzzer,” they mean the beeping alarm, not a vibrating buzzer type alert.

Gellin’ with Dr. SHOCK

The first thing that jumped out at me: the clear strap. It’s mostly clear with a translucent camouflage pattern.

I would imagine it appeals to the 13-year-old girl in some of us or those with a closet full of jelly shoes. Furthermore, I discovered there is something distinctly UNsatisfying about seeing manly arm hair pressed “under glass.” Ewww!

The watch is plenty comfortable on the wrist. While I took one for the team and wore the bone-stock Skeleton G-SHOCK 6900 with clear straps for the purposes of this review, it’s a deal-breaker for me long term.

Fortunately, the straps can be changed. In the meantime, I don’t mind mowing the lawn with it.

G-SHOCK Skeleton – The view from here

The display is a traditional positive LCD with a reflective silvery background, surrounded by a mirror-finished silver frame with an etched camouflage pattern. Surprisingly, it’s not as sharp or contrasty as my other G-SHOCK positive LCDs, including my other 6900. Though it is adequately readable.

G-SHOCK Skeleton and friend

Over the main digital display is the three-eyed “digital tourbillon.” Each 5-segmented LCD “eye” serves no purpose other than a visual way to count down the seconds. The two on the left countdown single seconds (totaling ten), while the one on the right marks each increment of 10 seconds, going blank for the last 10 seconds of each minute.

Fascinating, perhaps, if you’re into AMSR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) stimuli or just like to binge watch those “oddly satisfying” videos on YouTube.

The backlit electroluminescent feature makes it easy to read in low light.

This just in… case

The metal case / bezel is the star of this G-SHOW. It’s a hefty chunk of chrome with a laser-etched ghost digi-cam pattern. It adds some weight, which the mostly plastic G-Shock line lacks. The bit of weight adds to the richness of any piece and just feels good.

Between the various facets of the metal bezel and the alternating etched/reflective polished areas of the camo pattern on the bezel and the watch face it’s a dazzler in the light. Very sparkly.

The polished metal buttons compliment the metallic theme, and fall squarely in the Goldilocks zone of pushability. It’s just right.

G-SHOCK Skeleton – Dem bones, dem bones

The Skeleton series is another G-SHOCK fashion side excursion, taking some of their standard models and adding some cosmetic pizazz. While the 6900 retains all the unabashed durability that makes G-SHOCKs what they are, one comes at a cost.

The only thing that might have made the G-SHOCK Skeleton 6900’s clear strap more embarrassing: embedded glitter. Changing the strap to plain black rubber (or even a solid color) avoids the otherwise obligatory surrender of your man card. If you consider that an example of toxic masculinity, let’s just say the strap is just plain gross. Make no bones about it.

G-SHOCK Skeleton on black rubber band

Model: G-SHOCK GM6900SCM-1
Price:  $210

SPECIFICATIONS:

Case:  Resin / metal with ghost digicam etched pattern.
Crystal:  flat mineral glass.
Strap:  Clear resin with translucent camo pattern.
Dimensions:  53.9 x 49.7 x 18.6-mm,   96 grams.
Movement:  Quartz Module #3230.
Battery life: Claimed 2 years.
Water resistance:  200m (660 ft).
Functions:  Digital Hour / Minute / Seconds, Date, Day, Stopwatch (1/100-sec), Countdown timer (1-sec), Daily Alarm, Hourly Signal.

RATINGS (out of five stars):

Design * * *
The jelly strap is a tough pill to swallow in public. I think the ghost digicam metal case is pretty cool. Both are highly subjective.

Legibility * * * *
Typical positive LCD legibility is what I’d call a 75% level. It’s just not as sharp as other Casio LCDs. Lume is excellent. Good enough.

Comfort * * *
As comfortable as most other G-SHOCKs – with a bit of extra weight, which some people like. It’s fairly thick, and the hefty metal bezel may feel top-heavy to some.

Overall  * * *
As a “fashion piece,” it’s a matter of personal taste. As a digital watch, it does what it’s designed to do.  With a black rubber strap, I’ll wear it and maintain my dignity.

2 COMMENTS

  1. I presume they have overcome the old issues of clear synthetics yellowing or being weaker than those with carbon black in them, but that blotchy translucent pattern makes it look like a fogged up solid band.
    The chrome G-spot backlight button really annoys me. Plain shiny or matte with that Packers logo I could take, but both?

    • I don’t know if they’ve solved the yellowing problem…. doesn’t really matter to me. The clear band is a no-go for me. So, I’m switching it to a black band. I think it would look good with a green camo band, too. Even better… I imagine a black band with a ghost camo pattern on it. Now THAT would be cool.

      I agree that the translucent camo pattern makes it look like you’re fogging it up with sweat. Sweaty arm hair under glass… a great look!

      I thought that stylized “G” on the light button looked familiar!

      Thanks for checking out my review, Oscar!

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