Best Chessmen Ever

Chess Clocks Setup Test #10 - ZmartFun ZMF-II

An update to our chess clocks setup tests, a review of the new ZmartFun digital touch button clock with a spiffy name: ZMF-II

Yeah, baby, these come in colors! Love the price.


Rhapsody in Red

Obsessed with colors lately. Here’s a nice setup I did for the family. One of a kind.

The new Zmartfun deserves separate video review, stay tuned. The custom (and experimental) Rh Red color on my new BCE S1ER0053 turned out nice beyond expectations. Spectacular.


ZmartFun Chess Clocks Updated

The interesting ZmartFun line of digital chess clocks was updated with new design and some tweaks to internal software. The name is new too, the business cards read “Chess Clock ZMF-II” as of today. Whatever. For some reason the reset button seems to be square now. Mkay. Can roll with dat.

Added are some new features like byo-yomi timing modes and multi time-control tournament modes (up to three time periods). Simplicity was the name of the game with the older model, I hope it stays so with the new one. There are more details in the all-new manual, must check.

Screen Shot 2013-01-26 at 23.37.08

All-new slanted design is very welcome and the clocks are available in some interesting color combos. Definitely not a dull piece of chess equipment. High quality sturdy stainless touch buttons, if the previous model is any indication. Made in effing U.S. of A.

Prices are slashed, at € 54,95 these clocks seem like a bargain. They got the timing just right as at the moment the competition is asleep at the wheel and demand is high. Ordered one (red on red) pronto, will shoot and report as soon as it gets to Ljubljana.


P.S. Here’s a short review of the now defunct older model with some nitpicking:

Looks like they listened.

Chess Clocks Setup Tests

Setting a modern chess clock is not trivial. Some solve the problem better than the others. Here’s an overview of ten popular examples.


Simple, from another era.

Chronos FX:

This is what you want from a day to day clock. Rugged, easy to reset, fat display. This brand is best on the market.

ZmartFun Chess Clock:

A plastic substitute with bright LED display that fades out in sunlight. An indoor clock only.
Update (feb 2013):
The model shown was discontinued on the day of shooting this video.


Tournament standard. Not much use for anything else.

Chronos Digital Game Clock:

Everything but the kitchen sink. Badass clock.

Garde Digital Electronic:

New with a touch of old. Elegant.

Chronos GX:

FX’s younger sibling. Two pane display, nobody knows why. App Clock:

Very convenient for travel. Elegantly done. Beats all other specialized chess clock apps in the App Store. Lots of ugly design there.

Garde electronic:

A mysterious clock nobody knows. A very, very rare Ruhla clock from 2001.

ZmartFun ZMF-II:

An update, new model. Lower price even.

DGT 3000:

An update to DGT XL. Bigger display, eboard compatibility and US Delay mode.

My personal all time favorite is the discontinued Chronos FX. For travel the convenience of the bare bones app is best by far.


ZmartFun Chess Clock Review

It is an attractive chess clock, digital and all. Nice big blue numbers, green or red if you want them. Stainless steel touch buttons, rugged build. Plastic. A bit square. It’s just a box. Big ass battery combo inside. Makes the clock very heavy. You don’t want to lug this baby around. This is an indoor clock on account of poor legibility under direct sunlight. Those nice bordello LEDs don’t shine outside.

The LEDs seem to flicker in the video on account the camera being faster than the eye. This is not the case OTB. The glow is kinda soothing, actually.

Simple controls, no bells and whistles. One tournament mode. Increment, delay, -- both there. Silent operation. Maybe too silent. This clock is up to something.


Update (feb 2013):
The model shown was discontinued. The new model has a slanted display. Review pending, the clock is on the way as we speak.

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