A lot has been written about time. Its characteristics (it flies like an arrow, according to Groucho Marx). Its fleeting nature (ask the poets). Its price (it’s money, said Benjamin Franklin). Time is here to stay and so are clocks and watches. Sure, you can run out and get the new Apple watch like every other hipster. Or, you can stand apart with something that tells time typographically with a matrix of letters. We got your attention with the word “matrix,” right?
The award-winning QLOCKs by German design team Biegert & Funk display a square grid (aka matrix) of 110 letters that display the time in a statement such as: It is half past seven. It all started with the QLOCKTWO classic, a 45cm x 45cm prototype whose face changes every five minutes to literally write the time as a sentence in LED lights. The words on the clock face change every five minutes. In each corner, light points represent the minutes in between with radio controlled precision. Example: 7:18 a.m.
The front panel of the QLOCKTWO is fixed by magnets. It works as a wall clock as well as a free-standing object. Starts at $1,490.
There’s also a twice-the-size version measuring in at 90 x 90 cm. This one looks impressive on a generous wall space, like a piece of art in and of itself.
QLOCKTWO TOUCH is a compact table clock with alarm function. Milled from a single aluminum block, it is 3.5 x 13.5 x 1.8 cm and has a special screen process that make the LED lit letters super sharp. Of course, it has a snooze mode and even a Night Touch mode, in case you’re bothered by the lights. To tell the time, just touch the surface and the letters appear for two seconds. The luminosity can be determined manually. From $690.
The QLOCKTWO W is a super elegant wrist watch. When you press its stainless steel button, random letters light up to tell you the time, again in words. You also get the calendar date and seconds with the touch of the button, can choose from stainless, brushed or black steel and the languages German, English, Spanish, French, Dutch, Arabic and Italian. The case is 35 x 35 mm. Price $850 to $1,245.
We love the simplicity and clean lines of these Teutonic time pieces, the quirkiness of the idea to do away with pesky numbers, and the many styles one can choose from: awesome, eye-popping, design-y colors and sleek and sexy metals like platinum, rust, stainless steel, gold and raw iron. Visit www.qlocktwo.com for more information and check out this list to find U.S. retailers.