As of writing this, the GAN 356 X is the most innovative cube on the market. If you’ve read my Top 5 Speed Cubes list you know I like the Gan 356 X. The customization options paired with GAN quality speed cube design makes the GAN 356 X the main for many speed cubers. However, this cube comes at a cost of around $60. Is it really worth the price? If you’re willing to invest that much in your speed cube, the GAN 356 X is definitely worth it. The GAN design gives a great feel to the cube. That along with the customization options makes this the best competitive speed cube to date. Therefore, I’ve written this Gan 356 X review to show you why.
What’s in the Box?
- Gan 356 X Speed Cube
- Three extra sets GES nuts (different springs)
- Three extra sets of magnet capsules
- Felt Gan bag
- User manual
- Gan cube solution pamphlet
- Transparent cube box
- GAN356 X card
- GES Tool (tool for removing and tightening the springs)
Customization is made super easy. For instance, the cube comes with a set of springs and magnets in already. Included are an additional three sets of springs and magnets. Each set makes the cube feel a little bit different. Consequently, you can customize the cube to best match your personal preference.
First, lets look at the magnets. The magnets really define modern speed cubes. Magnets have only been in mass produced puzzles for a short time, and the 356 X offers the very first replaceable magnet system.
The box comes with 4 different magnetic capsule sets. The capsules included are weak (green), medium (yellow), strong (clear) and no magnets (also clear). The strong set comes preinstalled in the cube.
The strong pair is noticeable, and may be weird to someone who has never used a magnetic cube before. However, you can get used to them quickly, and I think the strong pair provides the most control-ability. The medium pair is slightly noticeable. And I could barely even notice the weak magnets without really paying attention.
The replaceable magnet capsules are located in all of the edge pieces. All magnets are oriented the same direction so you never have to worry about putting them in the wrong direction. To replace the magnets, simply turn a middle layer 45 degrees to expose the magnets. Then push a different capsule through the edge piece. This will pop out the old capsule while inserting the new one.
The craftsmanship in the magnet capsule system is quite remarkable. Each capsule fits snugly into the edge piece. The magnets do not rattle around when shaking the cube. They also fit flush to the inside of the cube so they will not catch on anything when speed solving.
GES (GAN Elasticity System) Springs
Next, lets talk about the spring system. There are two different versions of the 356 X. One version comes with the old IPG V5 system, and the other comes with the numerical IPG version. So keep that in mind before you decide which one to buy.
The IPG V5 system adjusts manually with the tool. Tighten it or loosen it precisely to any tightness you prefer. Problem is, there is really only a small range that works. In other words, the springs are either too loose or too tight. But there’s a small range in the middle that works well.
The numerical system fixes this by offering a few pre set tensions that you can set each face too. No more guessing if each face is set to the same tension.
Turning is amazing. If you’ve ever used a Gans puzzle you know what you’re in for. It’s like the 356 Air, but even smoother. It’s very fast, yet sturdy and stable. With the magnets in you get a good mixture of speed and stability.
The pieces feature a honeycomb lube track. Little grooves in the inside of the pieces allow lubricant to to evenly line the entire inside of the cube. Lubricant will last much longer than on other cubes.
I don’t know if it’s even worth it to mention corner cutting anymore. It seems that any modern speed cube has great corner cutting. And the 356 X is no exception. Gans boasts corner cutting from any angle. From my experience this is true. Even if you have the heaviest spring set installed the cube can still cut when turned at 45 degrees.
Reverse corner cutting is also great. Partly due to the Gans signature rounded centers. Overall, corner cutting is fantastic. 10/10.
I hope you found my Gan 356 X review useful. This really is a fantastic cube. For this reason It is my main, and I think it will be for awhile. If you’re looking for a speed cube, or a new speed cube try out that 356 X. I think you’ll like it.