Grid watch merges cryptic & digital time reading.

Design submitted by Matt from Canada.

Matt says: I wanted a watch that was using 3-4 blocks for the hour/month and color changing LED’s for when the blocks are used for the 2nd/3rd/etc series of numbers. For the minute, I wanted 2 big digits for the minute/day.

I wanted to use a 1 piece lens & add a grid over it. The best size is a challenge. This is why I did 3 pictures/2 3D models. Engraving the lens was another option.

The result is: A black lens covers the LED’s. A grid, that divide a block in 4, pass over it. (Or go around them & etched lines divide them in 4.)

The band is a little bit over 1/3 of the width of the case. It has inlays matching the grid. The sides of the band and case could have matching inlays.

How to tell the time:

Hour = The 3 blocks on the left.

Reading order = bottom to top.

1-3 = red lights

4-6 = green lights

7-9 = blue lights

10-12 = white lights

Minute = The 2 big digits at the center. (The 1 use the central column.)

Features (PM/Alarm/Date) = The 3 blocks on the right.

Reading order = PM at the top; Alarm at the center; Date at the bottom. (Or bottom to top.)

The color of all the LED’s matches the color of the current hour.

Any 4 colors sequences can be used. It’s possible to add animations like chequered sequences with 1 to 4 color(s), or line by line. Big/small blocks & any direction are possible.

18 thoughts on “Grid watch merges cryptic & digital time reading.

  1. Having the entire watch covered in a grid like that is quite cool i think. It’s almost as if it is made from a futuristic/alien material.

    The rectangle shape is quite hard for people to wear as it creates a large watch for your wrist, so I think some alternate shapes such as hex, square, round would be good to think about. The grid of LED could be experimented with too, I imagine there is a lot of scope for all kinds of time telling or even for it to spill over into the strap area too.


    • TY for your comment.

      My models are about 53 x 29 mm. Watches around that size are indeed rare & rarely seen on peoples wrist.

      Your last phase made me realize that it could be rotated 90 degrees & resized. The dimension would be around 36 x 44. Hour above (Left to right). PM/alarm/date under. (My 1st idea/sketch was with hours over but the symmetry, specially with the PM/AL/date lights, made me reposition them at the left.)

      The space between 2 hour lights / them & the case would be larger or a 4th light could be added & it would use 3 light colors.

      The band/case could be 1, like your fire / Nekura Progression/Scramble or shinshoku.

      Or a separate band & have the same width as the case.

      I don’t have a proble with “Spilling into the strap” but don’t know how to do it.


    • Hexagon grid sound good, but too hard for me to figure out! Octagon would also be good & hard to figure out (& it’s a square with cut corners)

      Circles placed in a octagon/hexagon display in a round case seem good. (= sides are plain)

      Circles in a circle display / round case doesn’t appeal to me, but may be good. (or sides can have decorative circles = pushed in, but not showing the display.)

      They would all give the interesting possibility to use “pixel art” digits/texts.

      I would need someone else to design them!

      Square case mean vertical rectangle lights. Square lights was/is more appealing.


  2. Hi Matt, the shape of the watch does not displease me, but to have several colors to indicate the hour, seems to me complicated? With your new version with 2 colors seems more accessible.
    5 * / Y.


  3. Very bold look with an interesting time telling format. I do wonder if it should tell more information as it has such a large display but then you would lose the essence of the concept. My only issue would be remembering which colour meant which group of numbers, so maybe it could have a “key” mode where it might remind you ie “Green = 4-6” etc
    Nice work sir, best of luck! 😀


  4. My first thought on seeing this is that the watch is too wide,but that turning through 90 degrees and having hours at the top would sort that out. So, I agree with the TF comments and your reply.
    Second thought was that I like the idea of the four colour groups, but would struggle to remember which was which. Mentioned above, but also easy to solve by adding the key on the strap somewhere (maybe on the other side of the wrist).
    So both problems are easy to solve. Then you have an interesting watch design that is very different. Good luck.


  5. I did a 90 degrees turned version. I like the result!

    I’ve posted a work-in-progress picture & more info on my FB page.

    Since then, I’ve finalized it.


  6. TY Pete & Nev.

    The key could be placed ( engraved & painted ) on the battery cover, with the “waterproof resistant” & similar info.

    On my new designs, it would be the only place available!

    Or “pixel art” text by using the display. ( I have no idea on how to make it look good )


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