The Gan company has been having much success lately and their first magnetic cube was quite a hit. I personally didn’t like the Gan 356 Air UM but many other speed cubers really liked it. Let’s get this Gan 356 Air SM Review started.
Out of the box:
The Gan 356S M got a lot of hype and just by looking at what I got, kind of lives up to it. In the package you get the full V2 GES which his very nicely packaged with the specific gan tool. You get a nice soft carrying pouch where you can find an ID Gan 356 Air SM and manual. Lastly, you get the actual speed cube in what I think is such a major upgrade – an easy to open plastic case. I hated those old Gan cases!!
The very first thing I noticed with the Gan 356 Air SM is how light it is. It might not seem like a big deal but this is a magnetic speed cube and all the previous magnetic speed cubes before this one were quite heavy.
The Gan 356 Air SM out of the box felt very dry which really highlighted how light and fast the turning was. The lightness comes from how loose the layers feel which also gave me a lot of catching. Being fast and light and me using Gan 356 Air SM for the first time I had trouble controlling my turns and get a lot of overshooting and under rotating.
This speed cube breaks in quite fast and during my first day of solving I already get fast times. I probably felt that it was broken in my 3rd day of speed solving with the Gan 356 Air SM and didn’t even have to adjust tensions or add lube. After a total of 80 averages of 12 or 960 solves I am fully accustomed to this speed cube, have perfect tensions (which I didn’t adjust at all!) and ready to give my review.
I mentioned that out of the box this speed cube is a fast and light turning speed cube and that is still true after broken in. I can execute algorithms super fast because of it’s fast and light turning characteristic. This being a really fast and light turning speed cube I would expect that it would be really hard to control but I do have enough control to avoid overshooting,under rotating and catching. It does have a hint of smoothness to give me a little control but I think the light feeling magnets just give it an extra amount of needed control.
Since I haven’t mention anything about the magnets up to this point I’m going to talk about them a little bit. I don’t really like magnetic cubes because they tend to have such strong magnets. The first Gan magnetic cube was absolutely horrible since the magnets were too strong. The Moyu GTS2M had light magnets but they were still strong enough for me to feel them a bit. I really like the magnets on the Gan 356 Air SM because they feel so light where I don’t really notice it.
I honestly don’t notice any corner cutting whatsoever. I think what’s making me not notice any corner cutting is because any kind of snapping or clicking into place that corner cutting usually makes is camouflaged by the tiny snapping into place the layers make because of the magnets. The corner cutting which is vague enough combined with the magnets that is really light almost have the same feeling. This consistent feeling makes corner cutting go unnoticed. Naturally because of I don’t notice corner cutting I will focus all my attention to my look ahead which greatly improved.
Catching and Lockups:
There are no catching and there are no lockups. My turning style is fast and rough and even with this kind of style there is no catching and lockups. That is not entirely true though I do get some catching on very rare occasions due to overshooting and under rotations but this is so rare and insignificant that I don’t even count it. The really good corner cutting abilities of the 356 Air SM also plays a huge role in reducing and catching at all. The absence of catching on this speed cube really says a lot about it’s corner cutting.
Everything up to this point about the Gan 356 Air SM has been really good and it would be so funny if actual solving sucked. Well, it doesn’t suck, it actually is amazing! My times are really fast and are consistent. I have hit a few non-easy full step sub 10’s and 1 sub 8 skip and I really think it’s because of this speed cube. I’ve had an 11.24 average of 12 which was a PB then I got an 11.17 which became my new PB. Lastly, the Air SM is such an enjoyable speed cube to solve. During the test of this speed cube I’ve found myself just solving and solving instead of writing my review. If this speed cube was any less better than I probably would have been done with this review a few days earlier.
There is no surprise that the Gan 356 Air SM is an amazing speed cube. Turning is fast and light with not enough smoothness but thankfully the magnets give you enough control for fast algorithm executions. Corner cutting is just amazing and I can execute algorithms super fast rough and inaccurate without any catching. The design is good enough to avoid any catching but then the corner cutting is also so good that you are ensured that there won’t be any catching. Everything about this speed cube has been good and actual solving is the same thing. I get PB’s and consistent fast times because of how good this speed cube is.
Personally, I would have to say that the Gan 356 Air SM is hands down the best magnetic speed cube and the best speed cube on the market today.