What is the Casio G-Shock GBA-400?
The G-Shock GBA-400 is a Bluetooth watch which connects to your phone and allows you to remotely change music tracks and alter the volume. Area of the famous G-Shock range, it boasts the traditional ruggedness that the brand is famous for – it includes shock resistance and it is waterproof down seriously to a depth of 200m. The watch itself is basically plastic, and comes with an analogue movement and two LCD screens.
Casio G-Shock GBA-400 – Design
While most contemporary smartwatches are dominated by touchscreen displays, the G-Shock GBA-400 looks like most other member of the G-Shock family. The chunky plastic design gives the watch a level of resilience which timepieces such as the Moto 360 and LG G Watch can only dream of – this is a device that is significantly more than with the capacity of standing up to the rigours of day to day life, together with water resistance goes way beyond the other smartwatches are capable of. With a limit of 200m, the GBA-400 usually takes dips within the ocean, not only the bathtub.
The facial skin regarding the watch features an analogue movement with large silver hands, as well as two LCD screens. The uppermost screen is where you’ll find the date, but when the watch is attached to your phone and flexing its music control talents, the current track name scrolls across this display.
Amongst the LCDs is a sizable silver disc which rotates to demonstrate set up Bluetooth is on or off – a completely useless element, but one that looks pretty cool all the same.
The reduced LCD display shows the time in a digital format, which can be as well, given that busy-ness of this dial overall helps make the hands a little tough to read.
On the right-hand side of the GBA-400 there’s a sizable wheel and this can be rotated to improve tracks on the phone’s music player or alter the volume level – the function hinges on which connection mode you are using, but we’ll get to that later. The positioning regarding the dial means that in the event that you wear your watch on your own right hand, you have difficulty operating it.
Arrayed across the edges regarding the GBA-400 are five buttons. An individual’s used to trigger the Bluetooth connection, although the other four are involved with general watch functions, such as for example cycling through modes and controlling your music. One of many buttons is employed exclusively to activate the “Super Illuminator” LED light, which can be likely to make the dial better to read through the night. In fact, it does a pretty poor job and for that reason it really is sometimes hard to tell the full time in dark conditions.
Casio G-Shock GBA-400 – Features and Software
The GBA-400 has most of the usual watch features, such as for example an alarm, stopwatch and timer. However, the most important selling point has got to function as the power to control your phone’s very good music player. It really is compatible with both iOS and Android, using Bluetooth and an app called G-Shock to do all of its wireless magic.
Although it’s possible – and perhaps even preferable – to utilize G-Shock to regulate your native music player, it is possible to install another Casio-made app because of the name of G’Mix. This is certainly essentially a dedicated media player using its own equaliser settings and interface. It even is sold with the rather nifty feature of being able to pay attention to songs played nearby and identify them using a baked-in version of SoundHound.
The big issue we personally found with G’Mix is that it only enables you to access tracks which can be stored in your phone’s memory. If you are using Google Music and have your collection stored in the cloud, the G’Mix can not access or play any one of those tracks. Also, when making use of G’Mix the physical controls from the watch are slightly different – the rotary dial controls tracks, whereas the G-Shock connection uses it to toggle the quantity. The other buttons on the watch control moving through tracks and stopping or playing songs.
Unlike other smartwatches, the GBA-400 does not offer any type of notification alerts for events on the phone. This really is an extremely strange omission, as Casio’s previous Bluetooth watches have showcased this feature, albeit with somewhat inconsistent performance. In the case of this particular watch, we discovered that the Bluetooth connection was well behaved, though there’s an enforced disconnect period to be able to conserve battery pack. Once the watch powers down, you’ll need to manually pair it again.
Casio G-Shock GBA-400 – Battery Life
Although we’ve naturally not been able to verify it, Casio claims the GBA-400’s battery is wonderful for two years of use. That’s an extremely generous prediction, and if there is the Bluetooth fired up a lot during the day, you are likely to get significantly less.
It goes without saying that you’ll also need to replace the battery when it will eventually fail, but we would gladly take that more than the rechargeable power cells which ship with pretty much every single other smartwatch, a number of which require a top-up on a just about every day basis. Again, this can be just one more method by which the GBA-400 has more in common with a traditional watch, as opposed to among the “smart” persuasion.
Do I need to purchase the Casio G-Shock GBA-400?
If you’re already a firm believer when you look at the wearables concept, there’s a good chance that the G-Shock GBA-400’s limited feature set should come as something of a disappointment. It won’t show you emails, inform you who is calling or list the contents of your text messages – functions which, ironically, Casio has seen fit relating to its previous Bluetooth watches, the GB-6900 and GB-6900B.
However, this weakness could potentially be looked at as a strength. By centering on a single aim – controlling your music without having to remove your phone from your own pocket – the watch can perform doing that one thing very well.
You’ll want to don’t forget that, despite its smartwatch pretentions, the GBA-400 continues to be a good timepiece along with of this build quality you’d expect from a G-Shock – and that helps it be a lot more rugged and resilient than your typical wearable.
The G-Shock GBA-400 combines Casio’s famous toughness with limited smart capabilities – it’s not quite a smartwatch, yet still offers some cool connectivity together with your iOS or Android handset.
From Trusted Review