**Updated on December 18 2013**
The 2x2x2 cube is a two layer equivalent of the 3x3x3 cube. It is basically a 3x3x3 cube without the edge pieces and consist of only 8 corner pieces. This puzzle is quite fun to speed solve with times that are very fast compared to 3×3. There are not much 2×2 speed cubes on the market and early designs were not very good. Many great 2×2 speed cubes have recently hit the market and are really great for speed cubing. Here are the 2×2 speed cubes available on the market.
**Table updated on April 10 2016**
Most of the 2x2x2 cubes found on the chart are old designs and may be great speed cubes a few years ago, but don’t quite make 2×2 speed cubes today. Some puzzles manage to squeak by with acceptable performance but that just won’t do in today’s standards. Newer 2×2 puzzles are just amazing speed cubes newer companies have cracked the formula to making them. The formula is to take an already great 3×3 speed cube ditch the middle layer and you’re left with an awesome 2×2 speed cube, it’s really very simple. The WitTwo was the first 2×2 speed cube to do this but newere 2×2 speed cubes have now incorporated this formula.
The Fangshi or Funs Puzzle company first came out with their Shuang Ren and now here they are again with the Fangshi ShiShuang 2×2. The 2×2 speed cube has several good points to it such as it’s usage of tiles instead of stickers. This 2×2 has minimal no lock ups and like it’s 3×3 brother it is quite smooth. Corner cutting is what stands out with this puzzle which is done with very little effort.
The tiles feature quite nice color shades and are actually the caps which snap into place, which is quite unique although can turn out to be a big problem. There is a chance you may not like the color shades, in which case, the only solution would be painting the caps black and applying your preferred stickers.
The WitTwo was known to be the best 2×2 speed cube for a while. Coming in the times when Eastsheen 2×2 were still commonly used it was the closest thing to a perfect 2×2 speed cube. It has really great corner cutting abilities, which is done effortlessly. It’s great ability to cut corners means that there is practically no lock ups, which makes for consistent solving. It has a decent turning speed and it has a crunchy scratchy feeling. Some love or hate his feature although this characteristic adds a sense of control.
The Dayan Zanchi 2×2 is based off of the Dayan Zanchi 3×3, which is known to be one of the best speed cubes. It took the great Zanchi design and incorporated it in it’s 2×2 puzzle. Lock ups and catching is no issue and tou won’t have to worry about pops with the Zanchi 2×2 either. It incorporates the torpedo mechanism, inherited from its 3×3 brother, which deals with pops. The best feature of the Dayan Zanchi 2×2 is its turning. Turning on the Dayan Zanchi 2×2 is exceptionally smooth which makes it a fast puzzle allowing for great solves and fast times.
The Moyu Puzzle company is very new and making quite an impact with their new speed cubes from 2×2, 3×3 and 4×4. Lets start out with the what is good about this puzzle, and that is it’s turning speed. This puzzle is fast, so fast that will tend to overshoot if you’re not used to it yet. It is a smooth turning puzzle yet has a slightly scratchy crunchy feeling. You will not find popping and lock ups an issue with this puzzle and it has good corner cutting abilities.
Although this cubes mechanisms successfully avoids lock ups, catching may occur if you overshoot the layers. Being a very fast turning puzzle, overshooting can be a problem to those who aren’t accustomed to the puzzles turning or with speed cubers with a rough turning style.
You can’t go wrong owning any of the puzzles mentioned above, although some are just better then others. Coming in last in this 2×2 speed cube race is the Fangshi Shishuang. It has a “your stuck with these tiles” attitude and although having good corner cutting abilities and a decent performance it still falls behind to the top three 2×2 speed cubes.
The WitTwo takes third place. It has been the main 2×2 speed cube by many and is still preferred by some speed cubers. It has a very distinct scratchy and crunchy feeling which lacks smoothness and is it’s biggest drawback. Coming in second is the Dayan Zanchi, with its super smooth turning. Smooth is good but too smooth may be bad. Like it’s 3×3 brother some find too much smoothness leads to overturning and a slight lack of control.
The Moyu LingPo takes the lead with it’s very distinct and unique feeling. Like the other 2×2 speed cubes on the list it has good corner cutting and minimal to no lock ups. Although why this cube is the best 2×2 speed cube is that it is – “just right” This cube turns very smooth but not overly smooth like the Zanchi 2×2 and it is very controllable but not as scratchy and crunchy like the WitTwo.