So this is a bit unexpected. Chufeng was released first, so I should have written a Chufeng review first, right?
Due to the infinite kindness of Speedcubeshop, I managed to get samples of the Mojue M3, the Chufeng, and the Weilong Square-1 early. Out of the two, I like the M3 a bit more than the Chufeng, and you know what? It's not even shipping to most yet. So I'll enjoy this by making an early review. :D
I think this is a very slightly pre-production cube, possibly one of the ones Speedcubeshop was sent to review. Because of that, some things may not stay entirely consistent with the production version. I'm planning on getting a production version as well, so if anything major does change I'll update the review.
As you've probably heard, Mojue is the new Moyu subbrand formed when the Cyclone Boys designer joined Moyu. Cyclone Boys hasn't really been known for making high-performance speedcubes in the past. While their cubes weren't bad, they could never quite keep up with modern trends.
This cube hopes to overcome that legacy, and judging by the way it's priced, it's solidly a flagship. No question about it. Unfortunately for it, it enters a market dominated by a trio of extraordinary cubes: the Valk, the Weilong GTS, and the Gans Air. They're not going to be easy to beat.
Look and feel
Let's talk about the stickers real quick. On first glance, they look like GTS stickers - and that's because they are. I compared the templates and this one in fact uses straight GTS stickers. This is further suggested by the telltale white lines around the red and orange.
However, I have reason to believe that these will not be the stickers shipped with the final production cube. Moyu generally shapes their stickers very well to each cube, but in this case, the stickers don't really fit. The corners are sharper and more square than the GTS, but the sticker is still just as round, and the edge is flatter but the sticker is still more rounded. Another thing is, it's not uncommon for production processes such as this to finalize the sticker design last, since that's one of the most variable factors between designs and other stickers could easily be substituted in short term.
In other ways, of course, it looks just like modern speedcubes. 56mm, rounded centers, squared corners, and "bread" edges (a fun term a friend came up with). It makes a high pitched clacky sound, less hollow than the GTS.
Somehow, stickered up it weighs just 74 grams - less than even a stickered Gans Air. I didn't even notice until I weighed it, and I'll get into why soon.
As usual, I evened out the tensions (which were already quite even when I got it). I loosened each screw a quarter turn, then disassembled, lubed the core with weight 5, and lubed the pieces with weight 2. I have done about 400 solves on it since.
It's important to note that Cameron over at Speedcubeshop may have already set up the cube before me. After all, the cube was sent used and without a box. Either way, I did set it up again to suit my turning style.
The Mojue M3 actually turns very much like a GTS. It's similarly clacky, slightly flexy, and fast, and has a bit of the same crunchy feedback from corner cutting (not as much, though). The thing to note, and what really confused me, is that whether you turn it or hold it in your hands, it definitely feels slightly denser and more solid than the GTS - there's almost as much momentum in every turn as a Meiying.
Yet, it weighs 74 grams. How come?
I like the turning feel. It's a welcome change from the Valk's silky smoothness, and it's nice juggling between the two.
Max corner cutting: ~51 degrees
Effective corner cutting: ~42 degrees
Max reverse cutting: ~37 degrees
Effective reverse cutting: ~30 degrees
Note here that the cube actually is capable of full cutting, but to get it to do so I had to loosen the tensions beyond what I'd consider reasonable. Unfortunately, it fell behind a bit on more reasonable tensions, both in missing out on full cutting by 2 degrees and by having rather poor effective cutting.
Anti-pop and anti-corner twist
Excellent and excellent.
|that was easy|
Nothing too special here. Again, we see that signature Moyu blue core.
Let's just take a look at the center real quick...
Yup, there it is. As already mentioned in the Fangyuan review, this center also has its corner near the base jutting out.
Still not sure what this is for. Stability, maybe?
The edge. Very simple design, a bit of a wide, flat groove on the side.
Hooray for simple designs. Cuts down on my writing.
The corner. It has a shoulder and a long center stalk rather than tapering down and flaring out like the Valk or the Yuexiao, but it does this with very simple geometry. No crazy curves or bumps like the Thunderclap.
Rather than rounding the corner base, Mojue has elected to make it...
Does this hurt corner cutting performance, as some have speculated? Not as far as I can tell.
Overall, nothing too crazy in terms of internals.
Magnetizing potential and magnet placement
I've started including this section now, just to satisfy the needs of the magnetizers. This cube shouldn't be bad to magnetize at all. You'll need to split apart each edge and corner, and offset the magnets within them, but placement looks pretty easy.
Here is a possibility.
As to how the cube would respond to magnets, honestly, I have no idea. It seems the cubes that are the most responsive are the lightest and airiest cubes, like the Gans Air. This cube is even lighter than the Air, but it certainly doesn't feel light.
Guess someone will have to try it to know.
Objective score: 9/10
Normally I would have taken off more for how poor the effective cutting was. However, I did find that on looser tensions they improved a lot, as did max cutting up to full cutting. I'm only taking off one point total here for corner cutting.
A very good score, actually. Very close to the Valk.
Subjective score: 9/10
I like the feel a lot - more than the GTS because of the solid and dense feeling. The weight suits me, as does the speed. The problem I have with it is that the poor effective cutting does lead to some lockups sometimes, but it doesn't happen often.
I'm not quite sure if this can become a competitor to the Valk as my main, but it can certainly come very close.
So how did the former Cyclone Boys designer do? In my opinion he shows a lot of promise as a designer, and could come out with some very good cubes in the future. As of today, his one offering is already very good, just a tiny bit lacking on the performance side of things.
I'll be very interested to see what comes out of Mojue in the future.
You should buy this cube if:
- You liked the Weilong GTS
- You like light feeling cubes
- You like dense feeling cubes (yes, contradictory, I know)
- You like clacky, crunchy cubes
- You did not like anything described above
- Corner cutting is important to you
HUGE thanks to Speedcubeshop for letting this review happen. Cam allowed me to procure the M3 early, letting me get this review out to you guys faster.
If you want to buy this cube, Speedcubeshop sells it for $17.95. If you feel that my review helped you come to your decision or helped in some other way, please consider using my affiliate link. It helps me out a lot and lets me get these reviews out to you guys faster and more easily.
Thanks for reading! This one was a lot of fun to write, and I hope you guys enjoyed reading it just as much!