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What came in the box ================= The box was pretty basic with not many extra's you got the alarm clock with the lead and plug attached to it, then you had a pretty thin user manual and also a information leaflet in with a contact address enclosed. The user manual did only come in English which I found strange as they do usually come in a good few other languages. If I am honest though I found this pretty easy to set up and never used the manual anyway. Setting the time =============== On top of the clock you have a number of buttons all of which are labelled for what they are. To set the time you need to press the clock button and keep it pressed in. Then you have a set time button, which has an hour button then a minutes button, your press each of these to set the correct time, the clock is a 24 hour clock which you can not seem to be able to change. Before the time is set the display will be flashing at you and the time is automatically at 0:00, but the clock will still run its time as if it is still on, so the flashing is helpful for incase your electrics go, so that you will know that the clock is not set right. Setting the alarm ============== This is just the same as setting the clock, you just click the alarm button and hold this down, thebn change the time accordingly, you do need to however switch the alarm on button to the correct position, to make sure it is on. You can chose from 2 alarm types you can chose from the radio or just a buzz, to do this when switching the alarm on by pushing over the switch you push it over once for the radio then as far as it will go to have the buzzer. When the alarm goes off you can have your sleep button set for as long as you want the alarm to be going off for. To do this before you go to bed adjust the sleep time by clicking sleep then adjusting the minutes. The alarm will automatically turn off after the minutes set has passed. Or you can just click the alarm reset button which will automatically turn the alarm off as soon as you press it. Your alarm will also go off at the same time each day unless you swutch the alarm button to the off position. Also you can only set one time for the alarm. Tuning in the radio ============== On the right hand side of your clock you have the tuning button and also the wave change button, you can chose from mw and fm you just slide the button to which ever you want and then turn the tuner wheel to find the channel you want it to be set at, once you have done that it will stay at the channel you have selected. The screen ============ The screen is not that big but the numbers on it are displayed really clearly and the time will always be spotted whether it is light or dark, as the numbers do light up in the dark, so you will be able to see the time even if you wake up in the middle of the night. The alarm can easily be seen by a green dot at the left hand side of the time to show its on so you will know its set just by a little look of the screen. The sound ========== Well with me been a heavy sleeper I did worry about getting a proper alarm clock with only been able to set one alarm, as I am used to setting about 4 alarms on my mobile phone, so the first time I used this I did still set other alarms on my phone just in case. I need not have worried the alarm is quite loud and the radio does play clearly and I did wake up straight away to the radio belting out a song, you can adjust the volume of the alarm on the left hand side of the radio with a little wheel just by turning it, it does show you clearly which way to turn it to turn it up or down. I do have it on full as I am a heavy sleeper but I did wake up with it. Price ===== I paid £9.99 for this from Argos although you may be able to find it cheaper elsewhere, but I did think it was a reasonable price to pay. My overall opinion ================ I do like this alarm clock, as it does just what it is supposed to do. Everything about it works just like it should, and it works just as good as payng a lot more for something that just looks fancy. It is just a basic looking clock but you do not need an alarm clock to look fancy, if it wakes you up then you have got what you needed. Should this ever break I would buy another one as so far it is doing the job that I bought it for.
We bought this Phillips AJ3112 Clock Radio about six months ago for £9.99 from Argos. It's a basic square looking clock, chunky but compact with dimensions of 13x13x5.6cm. The LCD display shows large green digits that are easy to read in the dark. It's a 24 hour clock and the lead is a decent length. As well as mains it can be used with a 9v battery. You can choose to wake up to a buzzer or radio, I always use the radio, kept quite low but loud enough to wake me. The radio reception is very clear. It's an old fashioned analogue FM/MW radio with a manual tuning dial to search for stations. The time and alarm time are simple to set. There is a large snooze button which is easy to find when feeling groggy. To switch it off without pressing snooze you need to press the second of four small buttons behind, which is fiddly, but good in my opinion because it makes me sit up in bed rather than continue to press snooze. There's also a sleep timer function. I've had no problems with reliability, it's kept perfect time so far. It's an improvement on our old clock which woke us with a loud beeping and had an annoying background electrical buzz, the digits are also bigger and clearer. This is a low priced yet reliable alarm clock radio. It may not be exciting but it has all the features I need. Recommended.
____Looks____ Although I've had this clock for some time now, it still looks upside down to me! This is because it's slightly wider at the top than at the bottom. It has nice clean lines but is quite blocky and plasticky. As always with this type of product, the cable coming out of the back rather spoils the look (such as it is!). The cable is fine for where I use it but not particularly long (about 1m). ____Function____ This is an alarm clock radio. You can use it as an (analogue) AM/FM radio which has a "sleep" function so you can listen to the radio in bed & it will turn itself off after a chosen length of time. You can set it to wake you at any time of the day or night with the radio or a rather unpleasant but effective buzzer. It has a snooze button which (as always) is rather too easy to use! The clock is digital on an LED display so you can read it in the dark. It can be set to 12 or 24 hour clock, and there is a useful little dot on the display to indicate whether the alarm is set or not. The radio goes up to a good volume, and reception is reasonable. The aerial is a dangly wire out of the back of the clock, which is apparently very tasty (at least, my cat keeps trying to chew it!) When I had the wire just hanging down the radio had a tendency to pick up a different station in the morning from the one it was playing in the evening - I think some of the frequencies are very close together and affected by atmospheric conditions. But it's not good to set up for Radio 4 and be woken by crackly pop music - or indeed the reverse! However once I got round to spreading the aerial wire more horizontally (by hooking it round the mount for the headboard!) this seems to have resolved itself. ____Controls____ This is where this clock really falls down. It has a nice big flat snooze button right across the front. All the other buttons just behind the snooze button are small, flat, and the most fiddly buttons I've got on any appliance! The on/off/auto slider is the worst - it's almost flat with just a ridge in the middle, and I have broken nails on it several times, and let's not talk about how many times I've turned it on instead of off accidentally. It has what I now think of as old fashioned digital adjustment - hold down the "hour" button and click the "adjust" button to increase the hour, and similarly to change the minutes. So if you want to put it back 5 minutes to give yourself a little extra time in the morning then you have to go all round the clock - increase the hours by 23 and the minutes by 55. Last thing at night. When you're not really awake. The adjustment buttons also make a noise when you press them - so if you're doing this after the other bed occupant has gone to sleep, then you'll probably wake them up with the click click click click click click. It's not very loud - but loud enough in a quiet bedroom! You can press and hold the button to reduce the noise, but it's very slow and I am usually too impatient for that! There are two dials on the right, for volume and tuning. They are chunky and easy to manipulate, but not much good for fine adjustment. There is an indicator on the front (a bit of plastic on a scale of frequencies - basic but fair enough) to show what frequency you're at - useful if you know what you're aiming for - but it's not very easy to read because the shape of the clock means it's pointing slightly downwards, away from you. ____Price____ This is why I didn't cut the rating more for the annoyance of the stupid fiddly buttons: it's cheap, very cheap. When I bought it, the price was within £1 of the Tesco Value clock radio, so they don't come much cheaper. And it seems to be pretty robust and reliable for the price.