Optical crystal + its range of use

Samantha Mikos
Rachel Harmon

Here at Cristaux International, we are the leading crystal enthusiasts of the recognition industry. If you’re in search of answers on optical crystal, then you’ve come to the right place.

The word “crystal” directly translates to “cristaux” in French. When you match our love of crystal with our passion for excellence, you’ve got the perfect combination for recognition success: optical crystal. This superior material is known for its brilliance and elegance. To understand how this material would fit into your recognition needs, join us and learn more, as we geek out on all the fun details that optical crystal has to offer.

What is optical crystal?

This luxe variety of crystal is in a league of its own. Optical crystal has no mineral content, meaning it is translucent and colorless, and it is much clearer than lead crystal. It is known for its durability, not scratching or chipping easily. It can also be engineered into lenses to guide light, hence the use of the word “optical,” meaning “relating to sight.”

Optical crystal comes in various grades including K9 and grade A. K9 crystal is a popular choice for manufacturing. It offers great clarity at a low cost. However, K9 crystal often yellows and tarnishes over time. For a bit more of a premium, there is grade A optical crystal. It is the holy grail of crystal, and because of its superiority, the Cristaux team only uses grade A optical crystal. We believe in delivering the best and innovating ways to make it cost-effective.

Group of optical crytsal viking cruise ships. Sand etched and colorfilled

Common Optical Crystal Sculptures

Optical Crystal cube

An optical crystal cube is a cube made of crystal. It often features a mirrored base to intensify the light shining through the piece. These sculptures are unique in how they display light and colors at different angles. Additionally, the complexity of the cube’s design determines how much crystal will be used and in what way. The pieces of art may have beveled edges or balance on a corner for a gravity-defying effect.

Optical Crystal Base

An optical crystal base provides a sturdy yet refined foundation for any sculpture or award. The durability of this material makes it unmatched. It also comes in many colors, ranging from clear to black. Additionally, it pairs seamlessly with other materials with acrylic and metal.

Optical Crystal Statue

Optical crystal is a popular material choice for custom sculptures and award statues because it offers great flexibility for artisans working with it. Also, it realizes and elevates many diverse designs, from modern to traditional to glamorous.

Optical crystal cut and faceted into abstract shape with metal tips.

What fields use optical crystal?

Optical crystal has many uses, which isn’t surprising considering its great versatility. Yes, it’s pretty to look at, but it is so much more.

What is optical crystal in photography?

In photography, optical crystal is used to create durable lenses for cameras. Additionally, crystal balls, prisms, and more are used to add creative touches to photographs. Fisheye lenses and crystal spheres work similarly by reflecting a curved, panoramic image. Crystal tools help photographers capture rainbow and kaleidoscopic flares and reflections in their pictures, to elevate their work.

What is optical crystal in science?

Due to its clarity and damage-resistance, optical crystal is often used to create lenses for medical equipment, devices, and more. Also, optical crystal is fashioned into optical windows: flat, transparent, and circular plates. These windows are used in optical instruments like telescopes and microscopes.

Other Fields

The following industries commonly use optical crystal for trophy awards, financial tombstones, and more. These fields routinely recognize achievements, leaders, champions, and more, and those in charge of designing these recognition programs turn to crystal for their recognition pieces:

Continue reading to learn about the manufacturing process of crystal awards and gifts.

Optical crystal waterjet cut into W logo

What is optical crystal in awards + trophies?

Optical crystal is used to produce state-of-the-art custom awards, custom trophies, deal toys, building replicas, and more. It adds great weight and sophistication to any creation. At Cristaux, crystal is our namesake, so we only use the best: grade A or bust! To deliver exquisite creations to our clients, we follow a strategic manufacturing process for our crystal awards and gifts:

  1. We finalize our client’s design and contact our vendors to purchase the crystal blocks best suited for the project.
  2. Because crystal can be tested quickly, we often use rapid prototyping for clients. This way they can see and touch a tangible sample of their design, and we can discover which thickness works best.
  3. Once we receive the crystal from our vendors, we do what is needed to reach the desired thickness for the piece. That may look like sourcing a larger cut or adhering pieces together.
  4. We then shape the crystal by cutting it with a waterjet machine or pressing it into a mold using the pate de verre method. When water jetting, it is crucial to balance the thickness of the crystal with the pressure of the water. We want to find that perfect point for clean cuts.
  5. To elevate the design, we have many different tools we can use. We can pair the pieces with other materials like metal or marble. We can also personalize pieces by sand etching, digital printing, or embedding special details.

Click here to learn more about our awards creation process.

Faceted diamond cut optical crystal and reflection

Optical crystal – the multifaceted material

Optical crystal carries great weight, molds to diverse budgets, and proves itself flexible for creative designs. In short, optical crystal is a power-house material for any creation. Eye-catching? Check. Jaw-dropping? Check. Flawless and striking? Check and check. Crystal is a material special to Cristaux. It is what our business started with and grew from. It is our foundation and specialty. You will love it for your visions just as much as we love working with it in our creative designs.

Contact the Cristaux team today with your idea for custom crystal awards or gifts.

FAQs: Optical crystal

You may have some questions that need answers, so we’ve provided information on frequent questions from people like you. If you can’t find what you’re looking for below, visit our FAQ page or contact our team.

What is the difference between crystal and crystalline glasses?

Crystal and crystalline glasses are the same. Both describe glasses made of crystal. However, crystal differs from glass in that it is more durable. Read more about the difference between glass and crystal.

What are the common ways to cut optical crystal?

The most popular techniques used to cut optical crystal include water jetting and sawing. Using a water jet machine is the most common method for cutting crystal because it executes clean and precise cuts for diverse shapes.