GARDE Electronic


This is a new addition to the stable of digital clocks. It looks much like the traditional Garde clock, with its wood housing and large face, but incorporates the unique aspect of a combination of two customary analog clock faces with a digital display between them. Three simple buttons on the bottom do all the programming. The "+" and "-" buttons choose the options and the "enter" button sets them. It is also used to turn the clock off for storage. There is a label on the back with a menu of 12 options, two of which are manual with "bonus" settings. 

Once the program is chosen the clock hands move in tandem automatically to the starting position (always with flag-fall at 6 o'clock). This means the analog hands stop at 2:00 for a game with a time control of 40/2, SD/1 or at 5:55 for a 5-minute blitz game. The digital numerical display in the center panel counts down, and a descending bar graph depicts the seconds. A blinking "x" shows which side in on move and disappears when the buttons are neutralized. The analog hand moves only at the end of each minute. An optional move count is displayed digitally as reference only--the clock does not freeze if time control has not been met.

Option 8 is a manual mode with bonus for up to three time controls. The bonus can be set to start with the first move of any of the time controls. For instance, if the game is 40/2, SD/1 the "time delay" or "bonus" can be set at 5 seconds from move one of the first time control, set the same way for the second (final) time control and, when the options for the third time control appear they would all be set at zero. The free time per move is the Bronstein method-the "bonus" time is added back at the end of the move.

This clock seems quite sturdy but only experience will tell how reliable it is and how well it stands up under tournament use. It has a one year warranty.