why are rubik’s brand cubes so bad

Rubik’s brand cubes have gained worldwide popularity since their invention in 1974 by the Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Ernő Rubik. However, despite their iconic status, Rubik’s brand cubes are often criticized for their quality and performance. Let’s delve into the reasons why Rubik’s brand cubes are considered subpar in the puzzle-solving community.

Inferior Mechanism Design

One of the primary reasons why Rubik’s brand cubes are considered subpar is their inferior mechanism design. Rubik’s cubes are built with a simple mechanism consisting of a single plastic core with screws, springs, and plastic pieces. This design lacks the sophistication and precision of higher-quality cubes available on the market today.

Furthermore, the mechanism design of Rubik’s brand cubes often leads to several issues:

  • Lockups: Rubik’s cubes tend to experience lockups, where the layers get stuck and resist smooth movement, disrupting solving flow.
  • Misalignment: Due to the design, Rubik’s brand cubes are prone to misalignment, causing pieces to come apart or pop out during twisting.
  • Uneven tension: Achieving consistent tension across all sides of the cube can be challenging with Rubik’s brand cubes, resulting in an imbalanced and frustrating solving experience.

To compare, modern speedcubes often employ advanced mechanism designs with multiple core layers, adjustable tensions, and more sophisticated corner-cutting capabilities, leading to smoother and more precise movements.

Poor Corner-cutting Ability

Corner-cutting refers to how well a cube can rotate its layers even when the corner pieces would typically interfere with one another. Unfortunately, Rubik’s brand cubes have notoriously poor corner-cutting ability compared to higher-quality cubes available on the market today.

When attempting to execute complex algorithms or fast twists and turns, Rubik’s brand cubes may frequently lock or resist movement due to limited corner-cutting ability. This limitation not only hinders solving speed but also adds frustration to the solving experience.

Lack of Customizability

Customizability is an essential aspect for many avid cubers. Being able to adjust tensions, lubricate the cube, and swap out components allows cubers to fine-tune their puzzles to their individual preferences and maximize solving efficiency.

However, Rubik’s brand cubes lack the level of customizability found in higher-quality speedcubes. These cubes often have limited or fixed tension settings, restrict the user from lubricating the cube effectively, and lack the interchangeability of core and corner pieces. As a result, cubers may find it challenging to optimize their performance when using a Rubik’s brand cube.

Inadequate Sticker Quality

Another complaint often voiced by cubers is the inadequate sticker quality on Rubik’s brand cubes. Rubik’s cubes traditionally feature stickers adhered to the plastic pieces, and these stickers tend to be of lower quality.

With frequent use and speedcubing techniques, the stickers on Rubik’s brand cubes can begin peeling, chipping, or fading, making the cube aesthetically unappealing and hindering recognition of the different colors. In contrast, modern speedcubes often utilize higher-quality printing methods, such as direct print or textured tiles, ensuring long-lasting and durable visual cues.

Limited Variations and Innovation

Lastly, Rubik’s brand cubes have seen limited variations and innovation compared to other brands in the market. Although initial variations included different cube sizes and shapes, the brand has been slow in introducing new features or addressing the issues identified by cubers over the years.

Rubik’s Brand CubesModern Speedcubes
Fixed tension settingsAdjustable tensions
Simple mechanism designMulti-layered, advanced mechanism designs
Poor corner-cutting abilitySuperior corner-cutting ability

These limited variations and lack of innovative designs have left the Rubik’s brand behind when it comes to fulfilling the demands of dedicated cubers seeking improved performance and solving experience.

In conclusion, while Rubik’s brand cubes may hold nostalgic value and serve as an entry-level cube for beginners, their reputation for being subpar mainly arises from their inferior mechanism design, poor corner-cutting ability, lack of customizability, inadequate sticker quality, and limited variations and innovation. As dedicated cubers seek faster solving times and a more enjoyable experience, the market has evolved to offer superior alternatives to the Rubik’s brand cubes.