The last time that we had TIME-IT on our pages, we were taking a look at a watch that called to mind the slap bracelets of the 80s, with a full complement of LEDs (for indicating the time) bringing the look into the 21st century (link). For their latest, they’ve kept going with the LEDs display, but this time it’s re-organized into something that’s a bit more of a “regular” watch.
You’ll notice that the word regular was in quotes there – though the T-Block is in more of a standard configuration, the readout is anything but regular. With a press of a button (just like the LED watches of the 70s and 80s) the linear displays light up, reading out the time.
On the top line, you’ve got the hours indicated (no 24-hour time format here, simple 1-12), with the next two lines indicating the minutes. The first one of those carries the 10s digits, and then the bottom line indicates the exact minute. So, to read this watch, you’re doing a sort of left-to-right, top-to-bottom scan; the same is done for reading the date as well.
Now, this sort of readout isn’t anything that different than what we’ve seen before, both from TIME-IT as well as other brands. What makes this one a bit different is how it’s packaged. The case itself presents almost as a solid block, and it has some odd (at first) stepping to it. You quickly realize that the front of the case is simply picking up the pattern evident in the integrated strap, going for a cohesive look.
While I appreciate the overall look, I was a tad disappointed in the strap. It’s a harder plastic material which, while light weight, doesn’t have the greatest feel on the wrist – something with a softer feel would be much nicer here, be it silicone or rubber. The strap itself is also paired to a deployant clasp.
Once you’ve got the strap cut down to size (this is an iterative process, as you definitely don’t want to cut too much off at once), you re-attached the plastic bits that the clasp is on, and you’re ready to go. Given the materials used on the clasp, it’s a bit of a wiggling game to get things aligned properly and locked in place. On the plus side, once it’s latched, I didn’t have any issues with it coming undone.
In regular wear, the T-Block is a very light weight watch, which helps of course to up the comfort level. Reading the time is a fairly simple affair once you get used to the readout (just press a button). Just be aware that, if you’re in very bright sunshine, it can be a bit tricky to read the LEDs. This isn’t so much a hit against this particular watch, but something that plagues many LED watches.
All in all, this is a watch I put in the “fun” category. The T-Block isn’t one you’re likely to be passing on down the generations, but it is a piece that you’ll enjoy wearing (if you’re into the retro-futuristic LED style) and will likely pick up some comments, as it looks quite unlike ones that have come before. And, at a price of around $190 (in a variety of colors), it’s not a watch that will break the bank. timeitwatch.com
- Brand & Model: Time-IT T-Block
- Price: $190
- Who’s it for?: Someone looking for a lightweight, LED-driven watch
- Would I wear it?: Perhaps, but infrequently – it’s just not a good fit for my personal tastes
- What I’d change: I think the strap and clasp could use some attention, and perhaps some upgrades in materials
- The best thing about it: The “solid block” look of the case, and how the stepped pattern carries over into the strap