Top positive review
75 people found this helpful
Brilliant radio alarm clock, and I'm really fussy. (Update, it still is)
on 7 February 2014
Still all good! An update to the below, I have lived with this around a year, I am still very pleased with it, it is faultless, never let me down, still easy to use. To answer one question the volume does go really low - on speech radio at least, if you want it to, to not disturb someone trying to sleep next to you while you listen. Also the brightness does go low enough to not disturb you sleeping.
A minor thing that impressed me, if you turn it off or have a power cut, it recovers everything as it was quickly, to the correct time and remembers all the pre-sets and alarm settings. I tend to turn it off at the wall when I go away for a few days to keep the neighbours happy.
Also I regularly use the USB port on the back to charge a phone or a kindle, very useful as there is no socket within yards of it. I have never noticed the phone interfere with it, but I don't put the phone on top of it!
Got this after sending my Revo Axis X3 back in disgust. Bearing in mind this is less than half the price, in fact even not, I am extremely happy with this product. Good things that spring to mind:
I had it set up and running in less than 5 minutes, I didn't need the manual. It was obvious to do, and set the clock itself. just the way a product should be, simple and obvious. Even the 2 alarms. Very impressive.
Has separate alarm options for weekday/weekends. Vitally important as I need to be unconscious longer weekends.
Sound is absolutely fine for the speech stations I mainly listen to, volume is in small enough steps to finely adjust, unlike some products I have. I don't need superb 800 watt Dobly (deliberately misspelt) sound in my bedroom.
Has an easy to find in the dark real volume dial! (cry of triumph) No impossible to find buttons or daft touch screens.
Very importantly as it is by my head at night, the display goes really dim, enough so I can see in the pitch dark it but not enough to be the least bit irritating. It has several light level settings, maybe 5 levels, and works fine for me.
The display is very readable, maybe 20+mm tall, absolutely fine for across the room. I have good eyesight but the last one I had the clock numbers must have been around 3mm tall for some reason.
Blutooth link to phone/ipad works well, paired in a few seconds and even controllable from the radio itself for pause and previous/next. also seems to stop replay if the sleep function on the radio is used, so you can restart whatever you were listening to where the radio shut down.
It starts on DAB within 3-4 seconds, much quicker than several I have owned and tried, very good.
Displays the radio station you are listening to then drops back to the time shortly after, just what I want.
VERY IMPORTANT When the alarm goes off, it starts off low and gradually builds up to preset level, this impressed mrs Fantastico. I read another reviewer said you can't go below a certain volume level on the alarm level, I have yet to prove this.
Re the above, if you can have a separate preset level for both the alarms, and for regular use, so if you have the radio on quiet or loud before you turn it off, you are still woken up by a sensible sound level and not left fast asleep or scared to death by the thing suddenly being flat out at 6am. Although that would be funny if its not me.
Has sleep function as well, just press and hold the off switch then turn the tuning dial for automatic switch off for 15, 30, 45 minutes etc if I remember correctly - I saw someone saying this is a little obscure and though I found it fine myself, I concede their point.
Size of unit itself is fine, I was worried it would be too big, but its ok. And heavy enough to not accidentally push back on the table accidentally.
Build quality to me seems absolutely fine, it does feel and look well made, especially at this price. Again, I am really fussy...
Tuning is easy and obvious, just turn the other dial on the front (yes, a dial!!) and press when you find one you like. Favourites is the same, press the favourites button on the top, then turn the dial and you are now going through the favourites. Perfect.
Reception is absolutely fine, I have a pretty good signal here but that didn't stop the Revo axis X3 giving up on DAB a couple of times. So far, this hash't missed a beat.
Things I don't like, and please bear in mind I am really being picky, these are very minor and in some cases unfair criticism considering the price:
First impressions the antenna wire felt a tiny bit cheap, a little chrome aerial on some others would perhaps look better quality, but not a big deal by any stretch of the imagination. And who looks at the back anyway.
The buttons are a little tricky but not impossible to find in the dark by touch, but, er, they would be, wouldn't they? I can live with this!
*******(update having lived with it a while the buttons are easy - well for me - to find and use in the dark)
No remote, but to be honest An IR remote would add £10 - £25 to the price and would probably be so limited in range and direction without being even more expensive its probably just as well they didn't. Couldn't they use a bluetooth remote? Again I guess it would probably be costly. BTW, a bluetooth remote was the only good thing about the other £250 Pure Sensia alarm clock I have which currently hangs its head in shame in the corner of the kitchen. I hate that thing with a passion usually reserved for microsoft windows.
This is not really a criticism of this product, but it does not have wifi radio, but I have yet to find a wifi radio AT ANY PRICE that is not badly designed, doesn't work, or most of the time both. I have had several and have given up. They all seem to use similar poor quality and intermittent proxy websites for the radio source. Either they should do it properly or not at all. I just feed my iPad or phone through the bluetooth into this and it works flawlessly.
In summary, its a great, well thought out product, I would have happily paid a lot more for it, and if anyone wants a decent radio alarm clock I would highly recommend this, its a great product. Congratulations, Roberts!!