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93 of 94 people found the following review helpful
on 6 December 2010
I'd been interested in a daylight alarm clock for some time and bought a different model produced by a different company. I was very impressed but had to return it due to a minor fault, expecting to get a replacement. I discovered, however, that the product had been discontinued and I was left without my light. I looked around for quite a while, reading various reviews on sites such as this and eventually plumped for this model as it had a significant discount. I did so with some trepidation as some of the reviews were quite negative.
Having got the product I have discovered that it does exactly what I expected to and it does it rather well. The buttons and functions are neither fiddly nor counter-intuitive (two criticisms read in reviews on this site), the various wake-up sounds are realistic (although possibly not all to everyone's tastes) and it does not wake up my partner, who gets up later than I do.
Most importantly, the light gently brings me up from deep sleep meaning that when the alarm goes off, I'm much closer to the surface and am not wrenched from deep sleep by a screeching mobile. The effect of this stays with me all day and I've found myself much more awake during the day as a result.
In short, I've found very few of the faults that many people reported and the product has done what I expected it to. I suspect, however, that fewer people review an item when it does what you expect than when it really fails to live up to those expectations.
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277 of 288 people found the following review helpful
TOP 500 REVIEWERon 3 September 2010
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
On the box, it states that 80% of users find this wake up light gives a "more pleasant way to wake up." I guess I'm in the other 20% then. Every morning, I've set the alarm (using the radio as my wake up call) and every morning, I've woken with a jump when the radio comes on and find myself staring at a horrible bright light. So basically just the same as when I used my mobile for an alarm clock, except I didn't have a piercing light shining in my eyes. However, Philips do acknowledge that it doesn't work for everyone, and that's fair enough in my view. I just happen to be one of those people who doesn't find it effective.

I do actually quite like the design though, and it can be used as a bed side light, so having this with a combined radio is actually quite handy. I also use it as a conventional alarm clock, so that's quite good as well. However, there are still a number of features that annoy me about this wake up light.

Firstly, the dials which are used to adjust the radio station and the clock, in my opinion, turn the wrong way! If you want to advance the alarm clock or radio station, my instinct is to turn the dial clockwise. But oh no, this is different! These dials go in the opposite direction! It's a minor point, but it's just one of those little things that could so easily have been corrected at the design stage.

Secondly, the radio gives a hiss before actually tuning into the station. So I actually tend to be woken by a long blast of interference, before hearing some music from the radio. Many other radios don't have this problem, so why does this? Surely the radio could just be silent while trying to tune into the station?

Another minor annoyance is that the bulb flickers while going through the dimming cycle. I know this is what we've come to expect from energy saving bulbs, but for anyone who suffers from headaches from this, the flickering is quite pronounced. I don't personally suffer from it, but it can be annoying all the same.

My final grievance, for now, is actually the one that annoys me the most. The lamp is non-replaceable. Who's idea was that? All bulbs fail, some sooner rather than later. So when the bulb does fail, you're left with a very expensive alarm clock and no light. Philips say this is for safety reasons, but I reckon it is all about profit. If the bulbs fail, you have to buy a new wake up light. After all, some of the lights in the same range have user replaceable bulbs, so how can it be safe to replace those, but not the one in this?

This wake up light could have been so much better if the little things mentioned above had been considered and corrected. Even though it doesn't work for me, I'm willing to accept that there may be plenty of people who do find it useful. However, until Philips sort out the problems with it, I'd be very hesitant about buying this particular model.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 18 January 2011
Yes, there are a few niggles with this product;

- I can sort of see how some people could find the controls awkward - they are somewhat modern and some people might not be used to this kind of thing yet; little jog dials that double as press buttons, however I find them quite pleasant to use, being used to these kind of things on various phones, blackberries and MP3 players etc.

- The alarm light and sound levels are shared with whatever setting you use for the reading light and radio, so if you've had it on dim and quiet before sleep, you need to turn it back up to bright and loud before you finally pass out - stupid, but at least these can be adjusted while the light and radio are off, so you don't actually have to blast your ears and eyes briefly before sleep to change them, and this is somewhat negated by the simulated dusk mode (see below)

- Lack of DAB... yeah, maybe, but see below.

- And the bulb is not replaceable (supposed to last 7 years, but seems a bit of a lottery)

But I couldn't care less! - for the first time in ages this morning, I woke up actually feeling awake, rather than staggering around feeling ill, not knowing what was going on, trying to put socks on my head and hoping someone will save me by bring me some tea. If this sounds familiar then this product is definitely worth a try - it comes with a 30 day money back guarantee so nothing to loose!

Also, the simulated dusk mode (simply the reverse of the morning alarm, where the light gets gradually dimmer and sound from the radio (if you have it on) gets quieter over a selectable time period really helped put me to sleep. It's quite a bizarre effect. It's nothing like just switching off the lights. It sounded like a gimmick, but it really worked on me - I went to bed completely awake at bed time as I often do, set it for 1/2 hour, and after 15 minutes I had to stop reading as I was dozing off!

Also, I found that using this meant I could start off with the light on full and the radio on a reasonable volume, ready for the alarm in the morning, and just let it adjust itself down and send me off to sleep.

I notice a lot of people have complained about the lack of DAB and how FM is going to be switched off in the UK soon.

Seems like that isn't actually true; Here's a quote from the first link Google produced on the subject...

"A lot of people are under the mis-conception that because analogue TV will be switched off in 2012 that also means that FM and AM radio will be switched off in 2012 as well. This is not correct, because as you will be able to read below, no date has been set for FM to be switched off by -- there hasn't even been a date set for AM to be switched off by. FM will eventually be switched off, but it almost certainly won't be before 2017, and it is more likely to be in around 2020."

So if your light is still going in 2020 and FM gets cut off it'll be time to upgrade, but 10 years is a pretty good stint for any gadget.

Yes DAB would be nice for the better selection of stations and better quality of reception, but FM going away isn't just around the corner.
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83 of 87 people found the following review helpful
on 17 November 2010
I've been using this alarm for about 10 months. Prior to purchasing the alarm I was having great problems waking up on dark mornings and consequently being late for work. This alarm has worked wonders. The slow lighting really helps to you wake up gently.

But....

* ...the device is incredibly fiddly to use. Whoever designed the button/wheels and menu system needs sacking, it's just terrible and REALLY frustrating. e.g. If you need to turn the light on in the middle of the night you risk turning the radio on or entering the menu system!

* ...the nature sound are terrible. They sound great until you realise they're only a few seconds long and then repeat. Once you've heard the same frog crock & bird whistle for the tenth time in a minute, you start to go crazy. The other 3 sounds are ok but not great. After 10 months, I only use the radio function now (which only has a one station memory).

* ...the device emits a high-pitch electrical buzz even when the lamp is off. I've since found this relates to the LCD display and the buzz reduces if you set the LCD to it's dimmest (which renders it almost unreadable in day light).

* ...the high price. RRP of over £100 is just crazy.

When I got the alarm it came with a "money back guarantee is you're not satisfied" offer. I wish I'd taken the offer because I'm now thinking of replacing the device.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Part of me was very intruiged by this product - the other half just thought it was an overblown alarm clock. However, my gadgety itch got the better of me, I bought it and I've been using it now for almost 2 weeks.

Overall, I am pleased. I haven't concsiously noticed the steady lighting up in the mornings but most days there has been a point where the light has made me wake up. Other days I think the radio was doing the work rather than the light. That said, I have felt the 'effect' of the light virtually every day - you do feel fresher and less lethargic and less hateful that it's pitch black outside and you have to get up for work. On the downside, the actual brightness of the light won't necessarily keep you awake in the morning - it's quite easy for your eyes to adjust and for you to start drifting off again. Also, I have to wonder how necessary this product would be in the summer months.

Of course, this also makes a great lamp which can be set at 20 different brightness levels, and an FM radio. The sound is good, IF you can get reception! Unfortunately, the reception isn't very good for my favourite radio station and I've had to do quite a bit of fiddling with the aerial.

In conclusion, I'm still split between 'awesome gadget' and 'overblown alarm clock' but have swayed a bit more to the awesome side of things - it is a nice clock, a good lamp and a decent radio - plus, I do think the 'sunrise' lighting has an effect on the body clock.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 20 January 2011
I work as a doctor and can get up at very unusual times. This wake up light works perfectly. I now feel completely ready to get up when the alarm goes off. The science behind this is accurate as the light lowers your levels of sleep hormone (melatonin) naturally to make you wake up properly.

I managed to get this for £41. At this price I would advise anyone to get it. I think it is still worth it at £60 which I think is the current price.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 10 December 2010
Very pleased with this lamp. I always find getting up on winter mornings difficult. Since I've had this lamp I have had much less trouble.
I had a Lumie light previously, but this Philips lamp gives a much nicer light - the shade leads to a diffuse light.
The available alarm tones are quite fine, not too irritating - given that no sound at 6.30 a.m. is welcome! There is also an FM radio function, if you prefer to wake up to the radio. There is a more expensive version that includes an iPod dock, if you prefer to wakeup to your own music collection/ podcast etc.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 31 December 2010
As a self-confessed grumpy so-and-so in the mornings I was over the moon when my hubby bought this for me LAST christmas.

I've had the lamp for a year now and I still love it. Yeah, the wheels on the side might be slightly fiddly when you first start using it, but as with anything else, you just get used to them and they really aren't that difficult or fussy. I certainly would not let that put you off buying one... the benefits far outweigh any minor fussiness!

Love the light... I wish I could have them all over the house!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 12 August 2011
I first heard about this product by a recommendation from a friend. To begin with, I felt aggrieved with spending so much money on what was essentially going to be a bedside lamp and had my doubts as to what effect it could possibly have.

However, I reached a point where I was struggling so hard to get out of bed in the morning (a mixture of cold mornings, mild depression, chronic lack of sleep and hating my work) that I was willing to start trying new solutions. I was getting desperate.

Now, I can't live without it. My quality of life has improved dramatically. It sounds stupid that a little light can change my life so much but easing into waking up seems to make facing the day bearable. My body feels less fatigued in the mornings and my mind is more aware. I stopped being late for work.

I still use it every morning to wake up but have only used it a few times to drift off to sleep. Can't seem to break my going-to-sleep habits as easily. Very glad I bought this item.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 27 December 2010
Purchased this item thinking it could not possibly be that good. I now find I would not want to be with out it. No more dark mornings, I enjoy having a radio beside the bed also. Anyone who thinks the light is too bright TURN IT DOWN we have ours on number 10. Wish I had got one years ago.
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