New chess clock review - ZMF Tap n Touch

lasertswift

ZMF Tap and Set Chess Clock Review

I recently bought the new Tap n Touch chess clock by ZMF and thought I would write a quick review…

It is made out of plastic but feels fairly sturdy.  Not as sturdy as a Chronos, but acceptable.  What is weird is that the back is open.  See the pictures.  That just seemed… Odd.

FRONT

BACK

UNDERNEATH

The on/off switch is located underneath the open back and feels flimsy.  I feel like it will break fairly easily but I could be wrong.  Time will tell.  It takes 2 AA batteries, but the battery compartment is also very flimsy and feels like it will break easily too.

It comes in a touch sensor or button.  I got one of each.  Both the touch sensor/button feature a black case with red sensor/buttons.  They also have red LED lights.

The screen is LCD and is very clear although the numbers are very fine whereas the Chronos numbers are very bold.  It shows if there is an increment/delay and it also shows which period you are in for multiple time periods.  It only shows the moves if you pause the clock.  One thing I do like is that if you pause the clock it shows whose turn it is for when you resume unlike the Chronos.  See pictures.

PAUSED

You can set it for sound or no sound but the sound on was so quiet I at first thought it was broken.

You can have 3 different times stored in memory.  The tap n set function works very well and is very easy to set with no manual needed.  That option is very cool which is, of course, the selling point of the clock. 

Seeing that it is half the cost of the Chronos I feel like it is worth it as long as the flimsy parts don’t break.  Again, time will tell.

Let me know if you have any questions.

D8Reptile
I also received one. So far it seems pretty good. The only issue I have with mine is that it doesn’t sit flush with the table. It’s a tiny bit unbalanced. It actually rocks back and forth, ever so slightly, when pressing on it.

The only thing I could discern is that it’s either a tiny bit warped or the rubber feet are slightly different sizes (unlikely the feet).

Overall seems pretty good but I’m trying to figure out how to get it to sit flush to the table.
BonTheCat
D8Reptile wrote:
Overall seems pretty good but I’m trying to figure out how to get it to sit flush to the table.

A piece of chewing gum!

 

Micahsmith

When the clock is paused, are you able to re-start either players side of the clock when unpausing the clock? You can on most clocks (unfortunately you can't on the VTEK 300, which I consider to be the best clock despite this flaw). If you can't re-start either players side of the clock when unpausing the clock, here is an example of a problem this can create. Player A makes an illegal move and presses his side of the clock. The clock is paused and two minutes are added to Player B's time. Now player A has to go back and make a legal move but there is no way to immediately start Player A's side of the clock when unpausing the clock. You have to unpause the clock and quickly press Player B's side of the clock to start Player A's side of the clock again but this will mess up the time if increment is being used and/or mess up the move counter if the move counter feature is on. 

Only showing the number of moves made when you pause the clock seems to be a rather poor feature to me. On a lot of clocks, you have to press a button on the clock to see the number of moves made which is annoying but at least the clock will still run when you do this. The Chronos Clocks can be set so the number of moves made is always displayed on the screen but if you set it this way for delay time controls, you won't be able to see the delay countdown which is much more important to see. The Excalibur Game Time II can be set to do it the best way in that it can be set so the clock always show the number of moves made on the screen AND shows the delay countdown. The VTEK 300 can also be set to do it in a very similar way to the Excalibur Game Time II in that you can set it to show both the number of moves made and the delay countdown on the screen, although not at the same time. For the player whose turn it is, it shows the delay countdown and then the number of moves made after the delay countdown is over. For the player who turn it isn't, it always shows the number of moves made. 

Another issue with the TAP N Set clock is that it can't be set to have the increment or delay only on the sudden death time control (such as a 40/90,SD/30 game with a 30 second increment only on the sudden death time control) like you can on most clocks and there are tournaments that use a time control with the increment or delay only on the sudden death time control. 

ShelbyLohrman

The question I have always wondered about it is 2 fold.

1)  This is set by using an app on your phone.  With all the new USCF rules regarding phones in the playing hall, this seems to beg for someone who set his clock before the round to get a penalty when they forget to turn their phone off.

2)  Since this is SO EASY to set with the tap of a phone...is there a possibility for cheating to occur?  I have seen people set one of these things in under a minute.  With the END problems and everything else going on...how long till something like this is embroiled in controversy?  I know Roberto and he always makes great products, but all it takes is 1 time...

 

Shelby

Fish-Killer

Either player can start the clock when it's paused. The number of moves are always shown in the display.

Micahsmith
Fish-Killer wrote:

Either player can start the clock when it's paused. The number of moves are always shown in the display.

 Do you mean that either players side of the clock can be started when the clock is unpaused?

Your statement "The number of moves are always shown in the display." contradicts what the original poster wrote when saying "It only shows the moves if you pause the clock." Would be good to get know which statement is correct.

Another question about this clock. Does it show tenths of a second once a player goes under one minute like the other ZMart clocks do? Is there a way to remove the tenths of a second display if you don't like seeing tenths of a second (you can't do this on the other ZMart clocks)? 

 

Micahsmith

Anyone know the answers to the questions I asked?