Last week we learnt why the G Shock CasiOak isn’t a G-Shock, this week we explore how it became so popular...

One of the most recent trends is based around a watch that costs less than £100 and with so much variety available, this is one we can all get involved in...

What is a CasiOak watch?

In 2020, Casio released a brand new range of G-Shock watches called the GA 2100 Octagon Series. This new collection kept many familiar G-Shock traits, but in many ways, this collection was Casio exploring new ground with the G Shock name.

The G-Shock CasiOak GA 2100 - Image Credit: WatchGecko Online Magazine

A thinner profile, a new 8 sided bezel design, a digital time display with analogue hands and of course a seamless transition from case to rubber strap - no wonder this new series of watches quickly became celebrated. As popularity around this new range grew, comparisons started to be made to the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak thanks to its 8 sided bezel and integrated bracelet style design.

It wasn’t long until this new G-Shock started being called the ‘CasiOak’, a nickname coined by Scottish Watches and Steven Davila.

How big is the CasiOak?

Initially released with a width of 45mm, a thickness of 11.75mm and a lug to lug distance of 47.9mm the first series of references, the GA-2100 have an undeniable presence on the wrist.

Sure, at 45mm across it's a pretty wide watch on the wrist and will likely be the biggest in your watch collection, but after wearing this model for a good few days its size starts to feel quite normal and appropriate.

Available in a wide selection of colours, this 45mm reference remained the only G Shock CasiOak for the whole of 2020 with people snapping them up as quickly as possible. Aftermarket metal mods began to be released to really lean into the Royal Oak homage look.

However, as surprisingly wearable as this 45mm reference is, people wanted a smaller size. And so in 2021, Casio released a new reference, the GMA-S 2100.

The G-Shock CasiOak GMA-S2100 - Image Credit: WatchGecko Online Magazine

Once you put these watches side by side, you can instantly tell that this new reference is noticeably smaller than the original, coming in around 43mm. The thickness is also reduced to around 11.4mm and the lug to lug width is just 44.6mm.

For many, these proportions are perfect for a G-Shock and this reference is a brilliant size for those used to wearing watches around 40mm. But you’ve probably noticed one major visual difference. One difference that tells all about how Casio perceive these smaller models and perhaps give us an insight into who Casio is aiming this smaller model at.

The G-Shock CasiOak GA 2100 - Image Credit: WatchGecko Online Magazine

You’ll notice that the hands and hour markers on this S2100 model are finished in a rose gold colour. In fact, take a look at the rest of this mini CasiOak range and you’ll spot how the other models in the range currently all seem to have a focus on the women's market with pastel coloured models, all white with silver hour markers and this reference.

This is great to see Casio acknowledge the women's market by offering smaller models and keeping the DNA of what made the original model so successful, but we’d like to see the colours from the larger size make their way over to this smaller one. Hopefully, time will tell and we will see Casio expand this smaller range.

Either way, one thing for sure - Casio is onto a winner with the CasiOak; this certainly isn't the last we’ve seen from the range.

The CasiOak isn’t a real G-Shock...

The G-Shock CasiOak GA 2100 - Image Credit: WatchGecko Online Magazine

So we’ve sung the praises of the CasiOak here but what if we told you that this watch is not a true G-Shock at all? What if we told you that Casio had made big compromises on this model and focused too much on it being a fashion watch?

Well, to hear more on this controversial and interesting take, click here to hear from a true G-Shock connoisseur and his take on these CasiOaks!

Why is CasiOak popular?

With its low price point, the CasiOak is an accessible watch for most, if not all watch enthusiasts. It offers a familiar G-Shock aesthetic whilst also bringing something slightly new and fresh to the table. Although not officially recognised by Casio, its resemblement to integrated sports watches such as the Royal Oak are undoubtedly the number one reason why people love this watch.

Final thoughts

The CasiOak’s rise to fame is thanks to the adoption of the model into the watch community. Pretty much as soon as it was released, Facebook groups and Instagram accounts took notice and welcomed it with open arms.

The G-Shock CasiOak GA 2100 next to the Geckota G-02 in 40mm - Image Credit: WatchGecko Online Magazine

If you’re unsure which sized CasiOak is the one for you, I'd consider if you favour proportions or colour variations. The 45mm CasiOak is surprisingly wearable, however, it can feel a bit like a pancake on the wrist. The smaller model is more compact and will feel a lot more familiar to a wrist that is used to wearing 40mm watches, but for the time being, you’re limited by options. If none of the 4 variations appeals, it might be worth holding out for more inevitable coming soon.

Incredibly in just one year, this new release has already become a cult favourite, and we think it's a safe bet when we say we expect many more colours, variations, limited editions and novelties.

It's fair to say that now is a good time to be a G-shock fan.

Let us know your thoughts on the CasiOak below, is it a trend that is here to stay? What would you like to see Casio do with the CasiOak next?