Have you ever been in a moment where you’re looking at your cube, trying to practice color recognition for faster times?  I believe it’s something that we’ve all done at one point in our training or practices.  After all, we are attempting to be faster at it, right?

The topic that has been brought up time and time again is the shade of color that we use on our speed cube.  There are many people that use it for their main or their side cubes, but the topic does get debated on as to if they actually increase our times or if they are just for looks.

This post is to help eliminate (or at least bring light to) the issues that we deal with when deciding on the sticker variations and what we should pick for our own speed cubes.

Brights, Half-Brights, Or No Bright Stickers?

I remember when I first saw someone use any bright stickers on their cubes.  I had never heard of it before, but it was definitely intriguing.  The particular cuber I watched used half-brights, and they didn’t use it for very long.  It was largely because they didn’t like it for color recognition.

I, however, fell in love with it as soon as I placed the stickers on my own cube.  It was such a unique feeling, and I felt as though I was looking at a completely new speed cube.

You may or may not get this same feeling of enlightenment, but you may be able to grasp if you should give brighter stickers a try.

Bright Stickers

I don’t find too many people using all bright stickers, and not to say that they don’t exist, but most speed cubers are used to darker colored cubes.  Bright stickers are a great choice when you’re in the dark as you can see the colors better (but how often are you going to be speed cubing at night?)

Those who use the bright stickers enjoy it for the unique color scheme that is used and sometimes for a change of scenery.  I’m sure there are a few that use it as their main, and they do just fine with recognizing the colors, so it would have to become a preference.

If we were to buy all brights for our speed cube, would there be any difference in seeing the colors better?  I think for us to look into that aspect, we have to dive deeper into the contrast of the colors as opposed to the colors, themselves.

The contrast of bright colors are not that different from non bright colors that you would use on your speed cube.  The brighter stickers are all similar in retrospect with each other, as are the non bright stickers.  To say that they make a substantial difference would be on false presumptions that brighter means better.

Non-Bright Stickers

The most common color scheme that speed cubers are defaulted with are non-bright stickers.  Almost every speed cubing company uses some variation of the regular colored stickers to place on their products, and we like to use the same color scheme because it is what we recognize the most (and mostly because we started with that.)

The colors and hue can change slightly, but the main idea gets across: We know that we will get a standard color scheme when we purchase a speed cube on the market.

Now all this is not to say that companies haven’t adapted to better colors schemes to help break away from the typical colors that we are all used to.  I’m looking at two different speed cubes from the same company made about a year apart, and I can see that they changed the green and orange to become more vibrant and stand out from the rest of the other colors.

I used to have the problem of hardly recognizing my reds from my oranges in certain lighting because of how similar they were with non-brights.  That doesn’t happen anymore with the changes that a lot of companies are switching to.

If you think going away from non-bright stickers are going to help increase your times, I want you to make that decision with the knowledge that colors are not going to better your solve times.  They might help you recognize the colors faster, but they won’t change your skill level.  If you want to get better, you still have to put in the work, but it will be worth it.

Half-Bright Stickers

Half-bright stickers are for those who want a good cross between the regular stickers and the brighter versions.  Many people do not like the way the red or blue brights look, so they keep those along with the white stickers (you can’t make white brighter), and they change the green, orange, and yellow sides to be more of a neon color.

When I first switched to this color scheme, it was before speed cubing companies were altering their cube colors.  Most of the cubes on the market at that time were only using darker colors for their speed cubes, and it was terrible.

Cubing companies are now changing up their game and adding their own slightly brighter colors to make their cubes and the colors stand out from the crowd.  I haven’t found the need to buy half-bright stickers anymore because of what the companies are doing now.

In the future, I may grab some more half-brights to have a little fun and see how they work with my newer cubes, but I’m not convinced that they will help my recognition anymore like they used to.  The companies that are paying attention realize that the color scheme is important, and dark colors don’t do the trick.

If you are trying to decide as to what color variation works best for you, my recommendation is to stick with the regular, non-bright stickers.  They do a great job already and it more than likely won’t change your speed solves as much as what learning algorithms would do.

If you really want to give some a shot, they are very cheap and easy to apply to your cube.  The half-bright stickers would be my first recommendation, as they are a good transition from the non-brights to something a little stronger in contrast.  From there, you could apply the other half of the stickers to accommodate the rest of the brights.

I’m going to stick with my regular stickers and purchase some half-brights in the future.  Who knows?  I might have a little fun and make one all bright for the sake of having one!  Whatever you do, have fun with it and enjoy the experimentation.

What sticker variation do you use?  How has that helped your speed solves?  Let us know in the comments!