“ Brand: Argos / Type: Desk Lamp / Halogen „
Four years ago, my parents bought five of these lamps for themselves/us children and I'm pretty sure the total bill came to less than £40. Four years later, all five are working fine.
The design is great, the lamp looks good and the head of the lamp can easily be manipulated into any position due to the bendy stand the bulb is held by.
The amount of light that comes from the lamp is simply brilliant. Whether it's used as an additional light as you work at your desk, or whether it's the only light on your bedside table as you do some late night reading, it is faultless. It can light up the darkest of rooms and assisted me during many university all-nighters!
As I said previously, all five are working fine so I've never had to look at replacing the bulb. That said, the bulb is protected by a glass panel that is held in place by 3 prongs/2 screws. It looks easy enough to change, so I wouldn't worry about that!
One issue is the amount of heat generated by the bulb. The glass plate can get very hot when the lamp has been on for a few hours so just be careful!
In conclusion, if you're after a desk lamp - buy this one. It is extremely cheap, exceptionally bright and a pretty stylish lamp too!
Several years ago, as a good environmentally-conscious citizen, I went about replacing all the light bulbs in the house with energy-saving bulbs. These are, as the name suggests, great for saving energy and thus reducing bills and saving the world and all that. They are, however, no good whatsoever when it comes to doing anything that requires light. So to provide additional light for my computer desk I required a lamp. For three years now this lamp has been sat on my desk, after I originally bought it from Argos for the grand sum of £7.99.
Usually, I do a lot of research before buying anything but on this occasion I didn't have too many requirements. Firstly, it had to give off light, and secondly, it had to be cheap. One of the quirky design features of this particular lamp is an ultra-bendy neck allowing the head of the lamp, and ultimately the light, to be directed at your chosen angle. Although not enough to cause me a great deal of excitement at the time, I thought this might be a mildly useful addition and at worst something which could be ignored altogether.
== In the Box ==
The lamp emerges from the box like a contortionist (I say this because I have been unable to fit it back into the box since) with absolutely no assembly required. After removing the plastic cable tie and plug socket cover (both of which I can never bring myself to discard, convinced they will be of some use in the future) it's just a case of putting it where you want and plugging it in. The lead is quite long (about 1.5m) so it reaches from the monitor shelf on my desk to the extension lead on the floor with ease.
== Design ==
The lamp is predominantly black with the only exception being a silver metal rod protruding down from the lamp's head (to enable you to move the head without directly touching it). The whole thing is made of a rather cheap-feeling matte plastic with a scratchy feel to it. For the price you don't expect the finest materials, but I still think it is a decent-looking lamp. It certainly doesn't look out of place on my oak computer desk and alongside my flat-screen PC monitor. The slightly streamlined and sleek design makes it look a little more expensive than some other budget lamps and so it's not something that you will necessarily have to hide in the cupboard when entertaining high-class guests. Not that I get any of those.
When in a standard lamp position, similar to that shown in the dooyoo picture, its height is approximately 27cm tall and the base measures roughly 13cm x 13cm. If I'm being picky then I think that the base is a little on the large size and could have done with being a bit narrower. I only say this because space is at a premium on my computer desk, but it's not a major problem by any means.
The base of the lamp itself is solid and quite heavy, which along with the rubber feet ensures that it doesn't slip about when positioned on a flat surface.
== In Use ==
The lamp's light source is provided by a single halogen bulb encased in the lamp's head behind a transparent piece of plastic. When turned on using the easily-accessible switch on the base, the bulb immediately illuminates to full strength ("You hear that, energy-saving bulbs!") throwing out a good amount of light onto my desk. I am very pleased with the amount and quality of the light cast out by this lamp. My experience of cheap standard-bulb lamps is that they are nowhere near as bright as this and also tend to produce a yellowish light - the light here appears to be much 'whiter', which makes things much clearer and easier to read. Halogen bulbs tend to be brighter (although possibly a bit too bright for a bedside light) and also have the added benefit of lasting much longer than a standard light bulb.
The improved light and brightness comes at a cost though, as halogen bulbs get significantly hotter. The plastic shield in front of the bulb gets remarkably hot very quickly when in use and can cause a nasty burn if touched directly. I once got a blister from touching it with my thumb (send your sympathy via private message). The surrounding lamp head also gets quite hot, but not to a dangerous degree. Although it is still best to use the rod provided to position the lamp how you want it.
The neck of the lamp is partly flexible, hence the name gooseneck, and does come in quite handy at times. Only the top part of the neck is bendable - the bottom, vertical part is rigid - but it's enough to be able to position the lamp however I want. You could have it pointing directly the ceiling or at the wall behind the lamp as well as having it positioned to either side, whilst the base remains unmoved. The neck is easy to bend with hardly any effort and yet is still strong enough to hold whatever position you put it in. It is sometimes necessary to manipulate the neck by hand rather than relying entirely on the metal rod, but since the neck doesn't become hot this is no problem at all.
I find this feature very useful on my computer desk because it means that I can fine-tune the position of the lamp to have the light directed precisely where I want it; such as at my keyboard, desk, printer etc.
== Problems ==
Unfortunately, for all the benefits of this lamp I did experience one issue with it. I first bought one of these lamps about four years ago, but that one only lasted just over a year before the lower part of the neck became a little lose and the lamp stopped working; possibly as a result of some wiring coming lose inside the base. I felt confident enough to buy the same lamp as a replacement though and this one, which I have had for about three years now, is still working well and hasn't suffered a similar fate as yet. The bulb has also not yet needed replacing and has maintained its brightness.
Another potential issue with this lamp is the difficult in replacing the halogen bulb should the need arise. The bulbs can be difficult to source (the exact type is printed on the lamp - 20W G4) and are a bit difficult to change. To access the bulb you first need to unscrew two small metal plates that hold the plastic shield in place and then ensure that you do not directly touch the new halogen bulb as you fit it (hold the bulb with some kitchen roll or a cloth). The oil from human fingers can create 'hotspots' on the surface of the bulb which could lead to the bulb exploding once it heats up. You'll want to avoid this.
So halogen bulbs have their benefits (brighter, whiter light) but they are nowhere near as simple to replace as regular light bulbs. Thankfully halogen bulbs do also last a long time, mine is still working after three years or moderate usage, so it's possible that you may never need to change the bulb during the lamp's lifetime. I have a different halogen lamp on my bedside table which has lasted over six years with the original bulb.
== Summary ==
In summary I have been more than happy with this lamp over the years. The quality of light provided by the long-lasting halogen bulb is much brighter and clearer than a standard lamp and the gooseneck design makes it very practical and versatile. The main downside is that it does get very hot, especially the light-emitting part of the head, and therefore may not be suitable for everyone, in particular young children. On the whole though this is a very effective, great-value desk lamp and is well worth the price.
That price is currently £6.39 from Argos, and is available in either clear or black.
Thanks for reading :)