sam-jerichow-Xtal-01-preview

Xtal LED/LCD watch reveals the mystery with a touch.

Design submitted by Sam from Germany.

Sam Says: Xtal is the result of some small sketches I made when having lunch. When I looked back at the paper, I liked the initial mystery of the numbers, the simple geometry of the watch and the general edginess of everything.

The numbers are hexagon based. Almost each is derived from the well known 7-segment digits. They don’t have a center segment so they look pretty alien. The 8 is a special number that needed a different transformation. It shares the same characteristical symmetry with it’s ancestor though, which might help memorising it. The biggest mystery comes from the position of the numbers. The four numbers are placed in a row and their lateral corners overlap. Doing so, they look like some indecipherable glyphs, although the overlapping space is so small. One has to keep in mind that there are always four numbers and the overlapping corners mark their ends.

The case is a blank, polished, crystalline shape with a central horizontal edge facing the wearer. The numbers are well integrated in the case by bending sharply around that edge. The area above and below the display is touch sensitive so there are no visible buttons.

Xtal is for minimalists, sci-fi fans and hobby decipherers. It’s a pretty tame watch, until you touch it ;)

47 thoughts on “Xtal LED/LCD watch reveals the mystery with a touch.”

  1. Superb.
    I am really enjoying the all black surface & silver trim. Technically looks pretty easy to make & its such a smart look with wide appeal.

    Another cool point is that despite people wanting ‘always-on’ watches, this exploits that & makes the fact that its not always-on part of the appeal & style.

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    1. Wow thank you Toky for this insight!

      It’s incredible how a quick idea and a simple geometry can end up this nicely. I hoped I see it right and looking at the nice comments below, it kinda worked. I think the RPM is a good example of a good looking watch while off. Activating such a watch is pure joy.

      〈♥〉

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  2. I have a bit anxiety to this design, it looks like something I designed but your interpretation of the think alike idea is more subtle and beautiful. This is simply outstanding, saying so, I’ll grab this if its available.

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  3. Nice but hard to remember per number. Maybe add a very light dotted kine to connect the shape to form a number?

    But this is definitely a win win design! GJ Sam!

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  4. Really nice Sam.
    To me I think that something is missing …
    I do not know …
    What do you think about splitting the information, for example: hours, minutes and seconds to the top of the central axis and the date on the bottom …
    I think that would make even more attractive design.
    Otherwise, I think TF will make a good final product.
    Good luck my friend :)

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  5. Maybe i would by it, (depenting on the price) but i think that the glass on the surface would be very very often full with fingerprints. Such like a Smartphone Display. And that would be horrible for the usage.

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  6. Thank you Sarah, Lloyd, Gordon, Firfir, Logan, Jacoolz, I m, Laszlo, Rehtaeh, Petey, Kraut, Toby, Jose, Trayo, Bobby, Diclo and Xian for your comments and your support!!!

    Woah, if it looks like something you designed Fir, then it must be good ;) Thanks buddy!

    Jacoolz, I see your point, I really do. But imagine this: you would own the watch forever and you will have enough time to learn it. I know, learning isn’t much fun, but the look of the watch is (if I interprete you right). You’ll look back at the learning phase and smile when you tell others the time while they look at you like you’re an alien hahaha ;)

    I m, good suggestion! White will come for the next incarnation. Red… maybe later on my page (click my yellow name)

    Kraut: Teh….tehehehe

    Jose, thanks for these thoughts. But letting the cool display be there twice would make it less precious. The other reason why I have one group only is, it’s sitting beneath the edge of the case which kinda breaks the numbers where they already have corners… subtle releationship :)

    Trayo, I hear ya :D Even my non-touch watches have finger prints on them so I think a touch watch doesn’t make it much worse. I think the win of having no buttons and the interaction with a dark crystalline thing is bigger than the loss of appeal coming from the fingerprints.

    Thanks again folks, so nice to get this feedback!
    Check my album on facebook for additional images:

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  7. I dislike how people seem to simply continually rate highly for a mediocre watch design. Let’s please reserve our higher ratings for actually good designs. Use critical skills, people. Although this design isn’t bad, by any means.

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    1. Comprehensible comment. On the other side we have people who rate 1* from the very beginning for the same design and hide their critical opinion from the public, if there even is a serious opinion. Since the rating system is cheatable, you can’t say if a rating is made of groopie love or hater hate or a mix of both. Tokyoflash is aware of this and keeps an eye on too much ratings of either category. “Good” is a relative term on here. Concepts with less than 4* rating have been made real because in the end it’s Tokyoflash who decide. The ratings are a hint, not a rational and really serious indicator. It’s good that you are aware of it and it’s good that you commented because comments take time and haters mostly don’t take the time. Now I just wonder if you have more to say in the blog ;)

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  8. Not sure I agree with pcred566. I think most people DO genuinely rate honestly. I get he might not care for this wacth, but this is among my all-time favorites along with “Dendogram” by Cory and “V-BL47″ by Heather and Sam, and a few others (I have several favorites). ;)

    I rated this a 5*/Y because I will immediately buy this one if/when it is produced. However there are some watches on here that I really don’t care for and I rate them according to my tastes. I just won’t comment on them if I think negatively of it.

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    1. Wisely said Bryan. It’s true, among the honest raters – one sees it and clicks and one doesn’t always feel the need to explain it. It’s not just rational.

      Thank you for this comment and the support! Crossing my fingers for the “when” :)

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      1. You’re welcome, and thank you. In a way, I understand where he’s coming from because sometimes I look at a watch that I really don’t like at all, but I notice it got a very high rating, much to my surprise. It only shows me that we all have different tastes, not that people are rating every single watch very highly just for the heck of it. If you like it, you like it… if you don’t, you don’t. No problem. That’s why they make vanilla AND chocolate!

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  9. done it yet again. another outstanding design. gonna end up with no money if most of your designs are created. once again awesome work!!!

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  10. Please make this a reality watch now =) I really like the design of this. But the numbers are so hard to read and remember.

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  11. I have always wanted a Tokyo flash watch, and have reached for my card several times, but there has always been something…missing that I could never put my finger on, but this.

    Just awesome. I’m a total sci-fi nerd, and I play in 2 punk-rock bands too. The design is shamelessly futuristic and appeals to the geek/nerd side of me. The fact that the form factor is so thin appeals to the band playing side of me. Its a great streamlined form factor, that wouldn’t catch on all and sundry when moving equipment about.

    Dear lord, TF had better make this thing!

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  12. Thank you for this comment Bpm (intended abbreviation!?)! Cool how you see this watch. I like the simplicity combined with the alien factor and I’m glad that it appeals to you too. Would definitely look great on a punk rocker wrist :D

    Thank you Ethan and Marky up there too!

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    1. Awww shame I have to disappoint you :( Both watches are just concepts right now. But with comments like this and support and a proper amount of luck, this one could become true. Big maybe ;) Thank you for your comment sir!

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  13. I know I already commented, but I must emphasize that I would purchase it if it were made. I get bored with familiar digits and to have these sci-fi glyphs on my wrist would be uber-cool!

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  14. The not-always-on display combine with touch-screen is nice because this look like a wristband, not a watch. The numbers are nice but I don’t like the full overlapping. I would prefer having a space between the hours and the minutes ( 2-2 ) or no overlapping.

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  15. Hehe nice of you to come back Christian! I know the feeling about the digits ;)

    Hey Makk, that’s a good comment. In order to let the LEDs show all numbers, there has to be a certain segmentation. This would allow an optional addition of gaps between the numbers to better distinguish them without losing the ~cryptic~ sci-fi look. Theoretically hehe. This said, I’m glad you like the look. Yeah, I planned the center edge to be the most distinctive detail on the watch – worked fine!

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    1. If you check the last picture, you will see that a 2-2 would work fine. Overlapping the 4 digits to make them appear as 1 make it look like hindi/pendjabi writting : hard to tell where the first digit stop and where the second start !

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