Welcome to Dialed In, where we’ll highlight the very best, most interesting, and coolest new watches in the world.
The watch: The G-SHOCK Ref 6900, designed in partnership with watch site Hodinkee and the watch god, the horological haruspex, the timepiece trendsetter, the clocker rocker himself: John Mayer.
The single best thing about this watch: This G-Shock was made in collaboration with John Mayer, the 21st century’s most influential watch-buyer. Collectors and dealers already line up to buy watches that merely have the JM co-sign, and now he’s gone out and designed a piece himself. Guaranteed to sell out? Definitely. Almost assured to rise in value in the coming days, weeks, and months? Undoubtedly. The perfect holiday present for the watch nerd in your life? You’re darn right.
The backstory: Mayer’s design is rooted in a desire to unite two distinct products from Casio, which owns G-Shock and made the Casiotone SK-5 keyboard the musician played when he was a kid. The Mayer-designer 6900 borrows the eighties-tastic neon teal and orange from the SK-5’s “rhythm pads,” while the grey case matches the keyboard’s body. “When Casio approached me about the possibility of working together on a G-SHOCK, it actually timed out really well,” Mayer said via a press release. “I had already been pretty deep into wearing the ‘Mudmaster’ models, and something felt cosmically right about a G-SHOCK being the first watch collab I’ve ever done. Casio keyboards came to mind as much as the watches did. Then I remembered how important the Casiotone SK-5 was in my life, and it got exciting really fast. It’s the perfect bridge between my double life as a musician and a watch enthusiast.”
Over the years, Mayer’s worn G-Shock Mudmasters as well as a kookier cast of Casio watches, like the Twingraph and an all-white NASA-inspired model. This G-Shock is more of a crowd pleaser. Think of it as a “Your Body Is a Wonderland”-grade hit versus a deeper cut, like the jazzy “83” from Room for Squares.
This piece matters in the world of watches because: Mayer made his own watch. Many celebrities these days have their own shoes, T-shirt lines, or even McDonald’s collaborations. Even Mayer’s mocked up and sold his own Nike shoes in the past. The watch world isn’t as saturated with such interesting combinations—the last big celebrity-brand hookup is from late 2019 involved Pharrell, Richard Mille, and a $969,000 space-inspired timepiece. Mayer’s G-Shock settles in at the very palatable price of just $180. The musician probably could have approached any brand he wanted about a partnership and churned out an unattainable six-figure watch—it’s nice that so many of his fans will be able to go for this one.
I don’t want to just sound like a fanboy, so what should I know about this watch beyond the John Mayer of it all? Of all the G-Shocks in the brand’s wide catalog to choose from, Mayer chose what is probably the brand’s most iconic model. The 6900 first came out in 1995 and is largely responsible for making the G-Shock what it is today. The watch also functions as an alarm and can count down to something 24 hours out, which is useful when you’re braising a painfully slow-cooking roast.