First Look at the Normalzeit Wrist Watch

The Normalzeit watch is one of the more curious designs we’ve come across. The Austria-based watchmaker essentially exists to produce a single watch, with a truly one of a kind design. The Normalzeit, or “standard time,” is a miniaturized recreation of the iconic “Cube Clocks” that were once seen throughout the city of Vienna. Let’s take a closer look at this unusual watch.

Normalzeit NZ Limited Edition

  • Case Material: Stainless steel 
  • Dial: White (full lume)
  • Dimensions: 40 x 40 x 11mm 
  • Crystal: Sapphire  
  • Water Resistance: 50 meters  
  • Crown: Push/pull     
  • Movement: Seiko NH35A 
  • Strap/bracelet: Leather
  • Price: $575
  • Reference Number: n/a 
  • Expected Release: Available now

The first Vienna Cube Clock was installed in Vienna in 1907, and eventually 78 were built and placed throughout the city. By 2007 they had all been replaced with more modern clocks, but the name has been resurrected with these watches, made to as essentially miniature cube clocks. All of the key details have been recreated: the unique hand shapes, the circular minute markers, and of course the distinctive eight-sided shape.


When you write about new watches everyday you realize in a very acute way how similar everything looks. Of course, we love to revel in the little details, which is why we get excited about things like small changes to hand sets, and new colorways of watches that have existed for years. So, when something truly different comes along, it tends to really stand out, and the Normalzeit falls into this category.

The exaggerated handset and hour markers against a fully-lumed dial.

Without a doubt, the most distinctive feature of this watch is eight-sided case. In profile, it really does resemble a cube, which is a shape that shouldn’t work in a watch, but somehow remains coherent here. I think a lot of that has to do with the brushed finish. Polished sides on this watch would really draw attention to all the angles in a way that might not be flattering. The brushing allows the watch to hide a bit on the wrist.

Surprisingly manageable on the wrist.

While the Normalzeit is primarily interesting as a design object, and a tribute to a small piece of Viennese history, it’s no slouch as a watch. It’s powered by an automatic Seiko NH35A movement, sports a sapphire crystal, and has a dial that is fully lumed (definitely not something you can say about the original clock). The Normalzeit has been produced in a limited edition of 1,907, in honor of the year the first clock in this likeness went up in Vienna. Normalzeit

What do you think of the design of the Normalzeit? Is this something you’d wear on a regular basis?

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Zach is a native of New Hampshire, and he has been interested in watches since the age of 13, when he walked into Macy’s and bought a gaudy, quartz, two-tone Citizen chronograph with his hard earned Bar Mitzvah money. It was lost in a move years ago, but he continues to hunt for a similar piece on eBay. Zach loves a wide variety of watches, but leans toward classic designs and proportions that have stood the test of time. He is currently obsessed with Grand Seiko.