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Cubikook Manual vs Chef'sChoice 4643 Manual Side-by-Side Comparison
- Performance (50%)8.0/10
- Design (15%)8.5/10
- Ease of Use (35%)9.2/10
- Performance (50%)4.3/10
- Design (15%)9.3/10
- Ease of Use (35%)8.4/10
At first glance, the Chef’sChoice 4643 and the Cubikook are both decent pull-through sharpeners. But when it’s time to sharpen a dull knife, the Cubikook CS-T01 wins by a mile.
Both devices feature a strong construction and a flat base that offers excellent stability. We prefer the Chef’sChoice’s ergonomic grip and minimalist base design, though its duo-angle working section can be a little confusing for first-time users. The Cubikook has a more straightforward slot layout; on the other hand, its small grip with a flaky label leaves much to be desired.
Performance-wise, the Cubikook is hands down the winner. It’s faster, sharpens to a keener level, and creates a smoother edge while removing less material from the blade. In fact, it’s one of the most effective among all the manual devices we’ve tested. The Chef’sChoice 4643’s subpar performance is simply no match.
Cubikook 3-stage Knife Sharpener’s Performance
- Sharpening Time to Cut a Lemon (35%)7.6/10
- Maximum Sharpness Achieved (20%)8.0/10
- Edge Smoothness (20%)8.7/10
- Material Retention (25%)8.0/10
- Sharpening Time to Cut a Lemon (35%)1.0/10
- Maximum Sharpness Achieved (20%)6.0/10
- Edge Smoothness (20%)5.2/10
- Material Retention (25%)7.0/10
Sharpening Time to Cut a Lemon
- Sharpening Time: 1 minutes 30 seconds
- Cutting Feel: Swift and smooth
The Cubikook does a quick job of bringing life to a dull blade. After only 90 seconds on the device, our sandpaper-destroyed test knife could cut through a lemon with one swift draw. This placed the Cubikook in the top tier of pull-through sharpeners in terms of speed.
Most kitchen knives should see improvements after about 30 seconds on the second slot.
- Sharpening Time: 4 minutes
- Cutting Feel: Slightly heavy
The Chef’s Choice took its sweet time to sharpen and was consistently among the slower ones in all our test attempts. It took a whopping 4 minutes to bring the test knife from uselessly blunt to adequately usable on a lemon. Even then, the knife needed a little more force than usual to execute the cut. You’d get better results within the same time using a whetstone.
We wouldn’t count on this one as a convenient sharpener to prep our knife before a cooking session.
Maximum Sharpness Achieved
- Sharpening Time: 6 minutes
- Sharpness Level: 8 (Chicken breast with skin, 1 swipe)
After 6 minutes of sharpening, the test knife could cut through a fresh piece of chicken breast with the skin still on. The gristly fat under the skin kept running, but we managed to sever it with a little effort.
We tried the knife on a piece of raw beef tendon (Level 9) and it took two forced swipes, so we decided it hadn’t progressed beyond a sharpness level of 8.
- Sharpening Time: 6 minutes
- Sharpness Level: 7 (Ripe tomatoes, 1 swipe)
The blade had no trouble slicing its way through a ripe tomato in one swift motion. The chicken breast posed much more difficulty: Its slippery skin made it impossible for the test knife to slice clean-off in one go. Two rather heavy attempts were needed to sever the pieces, so we decided to keep the Sharpness Level at 7 instead of 8-.
This sharpness level should allow your knives to complete most food prep tasks with mild effort, but we usually expect more from a device with such a high price tag. We can’t count the number of sharpeners that cost one half or even one third of its price that can offer a better performance.
- Sharpening Time: 1 minute
- Target Sharpness:
While effective, the Cubikook doesn’t remove a lot of material. This is one of the advantages multi-stage devices have over single-stage ones such as the Sunrise Pro. The first stage (diamond-impregnated rods) helps straighten the edge before you put it through the tungsten ‘peeler’ stage. Finally, the third, ceramic stage acts as a final honing step to leave your blade as smooth as possible.
The benefit of single-stage devices is that they sharpen your knife quicker. That’s possible because they simply pull off more metal at a time. That means your knife will get eaten up faster, so you have the choice between quick sharpening or long overall blade life.
- Sharpening Time: 1 minute
- Target Sharpness:
The Chef’s Choice 4643 took off more steel from the test knife than its sharpness suggested, but the amount wasn’t significant. As typical of wheel-type sharpeners, the residue was fine dust rather than coarse shavings, suggesting highly controlled grinding.
The Cubikook creates a smooth edge. It came out looking much better than many single-stage and even multi-stage versions like Smith’s 50264 or Chef’s Choice ProntoPro. In fact, we scored this device better on the edge smoothness test than any other we’ve tested to date. It creates the straightest line with barely any visible chips, while the grooves on the primary edge were also even and narrow.
This fine edge is the result of good design choices. The device’s working section is placed low and fastened tightly to the base, which helps distribute pressure evenly against the delicate edge regardless of how much force is applied. The ceramic rods in the final stage help remove any remaining burrs or metal particles, thus minimizing edge deformities.
Chef’s Choice advertises ‘two distinct facets set at different angles that form a longer lasting, arch-shaped edge’. The sharpener indeed created what looks like a double edge on our test knife.
Unfortunately, while the secondary edge emerged sharp and convincing, the abrasives’ effects on the primary edge were so subtle they were unrecognizable even under a magnifying lens. The discs on the Honing slot were either too fine to make a difference or were placed at an angle that did not allow contact with the knife edge.
That explains the lack of sharpness on the test knife—the secondary edge helps, but it can only do so much.
Cubikook 3-stage Knife Sharpener’s Design
- Build Quality (75%)8.8/10
- Grip (25%)7.5/10
- Build Quality (75%)9.0/10
- Grip (25%)10/10
What’s in the Box With the Cubikook Kitchen Knife Sharpener
- The Cubikook sharpener
- Thank you card
The Cubikook comes in a nice box. Instead of an instruction booklet, the user guide is printed right on the box. We thought that was done to save paper, but then we also found a greeting card that doesn’t really say anything.
- Chef’s Choice 4643 AngleSelect Knife Sharpener
- 1 x instruction manual
The Chef’s Choice snugly fits into a plastic blister pack with a user’s guide included (which is also available online). The package can pop open quite easily, so there’s no need to cut it with scissors.
Besides the sharpening techniques, the manual also guides you on how to test the knife’s sharpness, and provides helpful tips to keep your knives in their best condition.
- Length:8.4" (21.3 cm)
- Width:1.9" (4.8 cm)
- Height:2.3" (5.8 cm)
- Weight:7.9 oz (225 g)
- Length:9.3" (23.6 cm)
- Width:2.0" (5.1 cm)
- Height:2.8" (7.1 cm)
- Weight:6.6 oz (187 g)
The Cubikook is easily the sturdiest handheld sharpener that we’ve tested. Its working section is secured to the base using metal screws. The device is solid, and because its parts fit together tightly, it feels like it’s one piece throughout.
The only issue is with the label. It is a strip of silicone that’s attached to the grip with glue and is starting to fall off our one-year-old device. This, however, doesn’t affect the sharpener’s functionality.
The finish is nothing to write home about, but it does ensure easy cleanup.
Its materials do not scream ‘top-notch quality’, but the Chef’s Choice 4643 benefits greatly from an ergonomic design and robust build. The parts are well reinforced and screw-tightened, though it can be disassembled piece by piece. Finish is near perfect and matches its high price tag.
This Cubikook’s grip is very simple. It’s a thin, flat handle with the brand label on top.
It doesn’t have an ergonomic design or a velvety cover, but we’ve never had a problem maintaining a firm grip. However, we do think it could be even better if it were bulkier.
The grip is connected to the base, forming a closed loop, which further improves the device’s stability. As a small plus, you can hang it on a rack or hook for quick access.
The handle extends and slightly arches itself toward the end, forming an ergonomic crescent-like shape. It’s just about the perfect size, and the coating material feels soft and grippy between the palm and fingers. Unfortunately, the handle isn’t loop-shaped. Otherwise, you’d be able to hang it on a hook to keep it within an arm’s reach.
- Levels of Sharpening:Coarse, Medium, Fine
- Abrasive:Diamond rods, tungsten carbide blades, ceramic rods
- Mechanism:Pull through
- Sharpening Angle:20 degrees
The device has one slot with diamond rods that shape and straighten the edge, one with tungsten bars that remove burrs and small amounts of metal, and one with ceramic rods for honing.
The working section is secured to the base with screws and is technically detachable. However, you’d have to remove the silicone feet before you can take it apart. Also, the manufacturer doesn’t seem to sell spare parts online. We find it a pity that the whole device has to be discarded once the abrasives wear down, even though the other parts are still in perfect condition.
- Levels of Sharpening:Coarse, Fine
- Abrasive:Diamond-coated disks
- Mechanism:Pull through
- Sharpening Angle:15° & 20°
The Chef’s Choice 4643’s working section features three sharpening slots that are securely fastened into the base and covered in a shiny stainless steel sheet.
Unlike most manual sharpeners with abrasive bars or rods, it’s equipped withdiamond-coated discs. As the blade passes through them, these wheels rotate with each draw, grinding and reshaping the edge.
Slot 1 sharpens Asian knives at a 15-degree angle while Slot 2 sharpens Western knives at 20 degrees.
Interestingly, there’s only one slot for honing (Slot 3) for both types of knives, but the exact grinding angle isn’t mentioned in the manual. We asked the official manufacturer in an email but have so far received no response.
Cubikook Manual Knife Sharpener
- Material:ABS plastic
- Feet Type:silicone base
The Cubikook has a flat base with two silicone pads underneath to keep it in place. It isn’t particularly large, but because the device is modest in height and tapers at the top, the base area is more than enough to keep it from wobbling. We love that the design is simple but still very effective in ensuring stability.
- Material:Synthetic rubber
- Feet Type:Slip-proof sole (x 4)
With the bottom being a hollow gap instead of a solid whole block, the sharpener is lightweight. However, because the base is wide and the center of gravity low, it maintains its balance very well.
The quartet of rubber feet attached at the base corners do a great job of creating friction and keeping the device in place during sharpening—we feel this is a more economical and effective design than the large pads usually seen in other devices.
Cubikook CS-T01 Knife Sharpener Review
- Slot Arrangement (10%)10/10
- Insertion (20%)9.5/10
- Pulling Through (10%)9.0/10
- Stability on a Clean Surface (40%)9.5/10
- Stability on a Wet and Dirty Surface (20%)8.0/10
- Slot Arrangement (20%)7.0/10
- Insertion (20%)8.5/10
- Pulling Through (10%)8.5/10
- Stability on Clean Surface (40%)9.5/10
- Stability on a Wet and Dirty Surface (10%)7.0/10
With one single working angle and the coarseness printed at each slot, the Cubikook Chef’ Sharpener is intuitive. Swipe through the slots until the knife is sharp — you really can’t go wrong with it. The slot labels are only embossed on one side, suggesting a right-handed orientation, but it functions just as well for southpaws. You just need to remember which slot is which.
The sharpener has labeling for the slots’ functions and designated knife types. Depending on the knife you’re sharpening, the intended order goes as 1-3 (for Asian-style knives) or 2-3 ( for European-style knives).
The slot trios share the identical size, width, and depth, so it’s easy to confuse them. We strongly advise you to look at the labeling carefully before sharpening your knives, especially during the first sessions with the device.
While the Western slot can only blunt an Asian knife, putting your standard knife in the Asian slot can destroy the edge beyond the point of repair. We actually had to throw away a test knife trying that out.
The Cubikook has some of the widest slot openings out of all the devices we tested. Granted, you can still cut into the walls if you have trembling hands or try to insert the blade too fast, but overall, insertion is pretty effortless and doesn’t require much concentration.
The Chef’s Choice has rather narrow slot openings, so if you’re in a rush, there’s a chance you’ll misplace the knife and cut the cover instead of inserting it into the slot.
On the bright side, once the knife is at the opening, it’ll be smooth sailing. Because the slots taper downwards and the discs are placed deep below, the knife will slide straight down. Insertion is thus much safer for the knife edge compared to sharpeners with tungsten bars that keep threatening to clash with the edge and cause chipping.
The Cubikook’s stability and sturdiness make pulling a blade through its slots a breeze. The smaller sharpening rods mean their cradle is rather light, but not loose — at least not when the device is still new.
Within a few months of heavy use, one of the two ceramic rods unfastened itself and started spinning whenever we pulled a blade through. This happens on both of the devices we have, so we’re not quite sure if it’s a feature or a fault in design.
We like that the sharpening slots are thin and the U-shape cutouts that frame them sit far below where the rods meet, thus staying out of the blade’s path. We can pull a whole knife through quickly, place reasonable pressure on it, even with the tip downward, and still never cut into the plastic.
Because the slots are deep and run all the way across its width (2 inches), it was relatively easy to keep the knife straight during sharpening to reduce the risk of creating uneven edges.
That being said, there’s some room for the knife to jig sideways; when it does, you will feel a change in the friction as you pull the blade through.
As its discs are placed deep down in the slots, the knife kept nicking into the frame, leaving lots of marks and scratches.
Stability on a Clean Surface
The Cubikook has a low center of gravity, with its working section connected directly to its flat base. The two silicone pads underneath further aid in keeping it in place. It didn’t wobble or slip even when we deliberately applied more pressure than necessary.
This is one of the rare devices that come without a full base and can still offer excellent stability. Despite being lightweight, the sharpener stayed secure and steady on a spotless kitchen countertop, thanks to its well-proportioned structure. Those with weak wrists or shaky hands will really feel a difference with this design.
Stability on a Wet and Dirty Surface
The Cubikook stands shoulder to shoulder with the Chef’s Choice ProntoPro in this test and beats the others by leaps and bounds. It slipped but never came close to rolling or flipping. Again, a wide base and a working section placed low to its center of gravity are the recipe for success.
Moving on to the simulated messy countertop splashed with cooking oil and peppered with salt: The sharpener’s balanced design continued to keep its footing. The base did lose its traction with the contact surface and moved along with the pull, but only occasionally and not to the extent seen on most other sharpeners.