Good Cheap Clock Radio

Jan 26, 2012 (Updated Jan 26, 2012)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Easy to use, easy to read, cheap price, decent build

Cons:Not any..c'mon man--it's a clock radio for under $13

The Bottom Line: If you need a good, cheap, easy to read, easy to operate clock radio--try this. At this price, it's hard to lose.

It’s Cheap-It Works-I Bought It

   That’s usually the way it goes for a lot of my purchases. But-for heaven’s sake don’t misread anything into that statement. I am not your everyday cheapskate mind you—but a well-seasoned veteran who has learned the difference between price and value, and the fact that they are nether mutullay inclusive, nor mutually exclusive. Our 20+ (maybe even older) year old clock radio finally died. You know the type with the plastic faux wood grain cover, the mechanical pre LED Digits that flip, and the ever so tinny sounding radio set to full blast. Well it had given its best for G*d and Country, but it really didn’t want to last too much further into the new century, so an appropriate funeral service was held, and we moved on to this one.

Build Quality-3 Stars
C’mon people. I don’t know of too many people who dump vast quantities of hard earned money into clock radios. My last one was a cheapie of adequate build, and so is this. It’s not flimsy by any stretch. After all, it’s going to have to take that initial morning pounding that they all do as we reach for the snooze button in a semi-somnambulant state. But it is obviously a mass of polystyrene, with an LED display, and an, at best, adequate radio stuck inside of it. It’s an AM/FM with not much else. Which leads us to the features on this little pup.

Features—3 Stars
Again, everything is average to adequate. That’s not a knock on this item, but merely a statement. You ever drive one of those sedans where the interior is grey and plastic everywhere. You know the Pseudo-Soviet look that could be found in those old Chrysler K-Cars. Utilitarian, functional, reliable, but blah! That’s this thing. It’s black plastic exterior melds with almost any interior, because it really doesn’t say much. The big advantage it has is the rather large 2” LED Digits. Even a guy like me who is forced to read with 2X+ Glasses can see these bad boys blazing away in the middle of the night like some surrealistic neon billboard. It can be set at two levels of intensity, meaning it is dimmable.  It also comes with the usual Sleep/Snooze timers, and a 9 Volt Battery backup power supply. The battery, however, is not included.

Overall—3 ½-4 Stars
  Okay, so I gave it three stars in the other two categories. The build quality is average. Take that statement however you want to. I take it as, adequate, won’t fall apart anytime soon, but not really built to go through a war either. Furthermore, it is not exactly what one would describe as, "resplendent with features". Then again—it’s a clock radio. And that is what leads me to my upgrade in this category. I have seen several others that didn’t get the gig, but because they had a more familiar name, or threw in the battery, they figured—they were worth 2-3 times the asking price of this one. That’s when my alarm buzzer went off. You see—you can use the buzzer on this one if you want to, instead of the radio, but at this price, either way is a go. Besides, I dare you to name me too many other things you can get at Wolf Camera for less than $13….—I didn’t think you could.

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