What's in This Guide?
- 1 Clock by Dream Sky with Digital Alarm
- 2 Essential Lenovo Smart Clock
- 3 Clock with Wood Oct17
- 4 RCA RCD30
- 5 Loftie
- 6 Light HF3520 from Philips SmartSleep
- 7 A Clock for Lemnos Riki
- 8 What to Expect
- 9 Strong Competition From
- 10 The Competition
Last Updated on September 14, 2021 by Sandra Allens
Even if you dim and mute your phone, you might have trouble sleeping at night if you use it in the bedroom. Despite contributing to a distraction-free bedroom, the best alarm clock can be beneficial despite the feeling that it is a technological downgrade. Our recommendations are based on testing one clock for a week without consulting a phone to find out if it made a difference to your sleep. You will be woken up by them in the morning, and they aren’t too bright at night. Plus, they’ll make a lovely nightstand addition.
Easy-To-Read Alarm Clock at An Affordable Price
It does a lot for so little money with this digital alarm clock. There are two USB ports on this clock, which are the largest we’ve found in the clocks we compared, and there is also a tactile control which makes it easy to use.
Best for. If you’re looking for an AC plug-in model that can charge you devices while you sleep, and if you want a large digital display, you’ve come to the right place.
This is why it’s awesome. Besides serving as an alarm clock, this clock also doubles as a USB charging station, for a great price. We were particularly impressed with the comprehensive digital display on the clock. Despite the fact that I have nearsighted vision, I am able to clearly see this clock without glasses or contacts.
Our alarm clocks require extensive manual reading in some cases, such as Philips Wake-Up Light. On the DreamSky, by contrast, all the buttons and knobs for changing the display brightness and volume are clearly labeled. DreamSky makes it easy to customize to your liking. Out of all the clocks we tested, it had the most customization options. You can snooze the alarm by tapping the touch-sensitive surface continuously for nine minutes, but there is no actual snooze button.
There are seven color options available for the DreamSky model. The models have different finishes and display hues, which make them the perfect choice for color enthusiasts. In addition to that, the DreamSky’s similar model has an FM radio as well as a 3.5mm headphone jack.
Batteries are not required to run the alarm clock-two backup AAA batteries are only required to keep the clock times and alarm settings in case of an unexpected power outage. This clock has two USB ports on the back — one for charging devices that accept 5 volts as well as one for powering the device.
Not a dealbreaker, but it has flaws. There is a terrible DreamSky logo at the very top of the screen. $20 devices feel just as you’d expect with their plastic casings and buttons. Unless you plug in the clock or keep it connected via USB cable, the batteries will only protect the time and alarm settings.
An Alarm Clock That’s Slightly Smarter
It takes up little space and is affordable. It is also completely hands-free, since it comes with an integrated Google Assistant.
- Best for. They are looking for a digital alarm clock with simple voice control and the ability to quickly see time, date, and weather information at a glance.
- The reasons why it’s so great. It is also possible to purchase an essential Lenovo smart clock that is lower in price. It displays time, day, and weather quickly and clearly thanks to its 4.5-inch auto-brightness LED display. The Essential does exactly what it says on the tin.
Its voice controls and Google Home app are used to access most of this alarm clock’s hidden features. Due to the angle wedge design of the clock, the clock’s four buttons that control volume, music and alarm settings are obscured from view. It’s difficult to see the buttons unless you’re standing above, so I frequently fumbled when switching on music or changing the volume at night or early in the morning. You can enable snooze by tapping the top, but sometimes it requires another tap to take effect. Instead of saying “hey Google …”, it was much easier to set an alarm, adjust the volume, or turn on the nightlight. It’s fortunate that the clock has two microphones (one at the front and one at the back) which are sensitive and can detect even the most subtle commands. This clock has a single speaker that can produce a tinny sound for music, but with Google Assistant, it can answer questions.
Those with limited space will appreciate the clock’s compact size. In addition, Lenovo built a charging port for USB 2.0 Type-A into the computer’s back. A nightlight is attached to the chair’s back. It’s best used as an ambient light to provide light when it’s dark, but even at its brightest setting the output is fairly dim.
- Not a dealbreaker, but it has flaws. When the clock’s buttons are pressed, they click satisfyingly. However, they are very small and hard to see because of their angled pitch. The tap-to-snooze feature needs to be used with caution.
Clap or Tap to Control the Clock
You can set the display of this alarm clock to automatically turn off after ten seconds. It has a unique tip-resistant, triangular design.
- Best for. Natural wood is preferable to plastic, and many people prefer simple designs with maximum functionality, just as they prefer alarm clocks that display the time, current temperature, and humidity at a glance.
- The reasons why it’s so great. It’s hard to believe that a clock that costs so little can have such an elegant wood body. It is considerably more attractive than some of the more expensive clock options. Unlike the DreamSky and Capello alarm clocks, the Oct17 is more upscale while remaining very inexpensive. Under its veneer can be seen a cool LED display that flashes when you look at it or not. It has a nice wood grain finish that feels good.
With the Oct17, all of the things you’d expect to see on a clock at a glance are right at your fingertips: the time, date, temperature, and humidity level. Should you be disturbed by the ambient light when using the Oct17 clock, you may be able to adjust the brightness. Several alternatives were available, but one of them was a total shutdown after a period of ten seconds. There is also an option to reactivate the clock by tapping or clapping on its face for up to 10 seconds.
Featuring a Loud and Affordable Alarm Clock
We selected this alarm clock as our budget pick because its LCD screen is easy to read and the alarm is loud.
- Best for. Everyone who wants to make sure the basics are addressed without spending a lot of money or getting a large digital display.
- The reasons why it’s so great. The RCA RCD30 is a digital alarm clock that has an easy-to-use display, easy-to-use buttons, and a loud alarm. We found it to be the cheapest of all the models we tested, making it a great option for guests and owners of vacation rental properties alike.
The RCA alarm clock has all the features you might need, even though it is a basic alarm clock. One of the factors we considered when choosing this clock was its size, which will allow it to fit nicely on your nightstand. Moreover, its illuminated display size of 3.75 by 1.4 inches provides excellent visibility in daylight and at night. As a result of the large screen size, people wearing glasses will not have to get up and look for their glasses to see the time. The RCD30 does not have a dimmer setting, so you may not be able to sleep with a large display.
Our RCA clock was easier to use than other clocks that were more complicated. The large snooze button at the top of most devices is usually not difficult to press. An alarm switch, a dimming switch, and a time switch control the alarm. It is possible to hear the alarm up to 20 feet away because of its loud, continuous beep. Wake up calls never end because you snooze the alarm.
In the event of a power outage at 2 a.m., your settings won’t be lost since the RCD30 provides a 9-volt battery backup. Several of the alarm clocks we tested had no way of displaying the time when it used only battery power, but the alarm still sounded.
- Not a dealbreaker, but it has flaws. Our review found that some of the alarm clocks have a setting switch that can be adjusted upwards or downwards. There is no truth to this statement. If you get distracted and you accidentally hit the wrong button while setting the time, you will have to re-enter the number you set. You can only move backwards and forwards with the minute and hour buttons. In Alessi’s Optic 02 B, the alarm setting experience was similarly frustrating, requiring a “be careful, don’t miss it” mentality.
Bedside Companion that Is Unalarming and Smart
It is one of the least disruptive alarm clocks we tested that doesn’t keep you awake in the middle of the night. Every detail feels like it has been carefully crafted to promote a calm and relaxed atmosphere, from the nightlight to the alarm tones.
- Best for. The following recommendations are for clients who subscribe to the minimalist philosophy of “less is more” as well as those who enjoy listening to ambient music and nature sounds as a way to fall asleep or wake up.
- This is why it’s awesome. If you were to awaken with the Loftie every morning, you would be led to believe you were rising by your own accord. This alarm clock evoked the most morning cues in our testing — birdsong, ambient tones, morning temple bells — out of all the alarm clocks we tried. Nine minutes after the first chirp, another chirp calling for you to get up follows. The program offers a variety of alarms that can be set according to the day of the week and can remind you to get up, exercise, or walk your dog periodically.
Additionally, owners can relax and sleep with the Loftie. Additionally, you can listen to a podcast called Snoozecast and create relaxing sounds with background noise generators. One of the Loftie’s benefits is that a sound can be set to be activated or turned off with the touch of a button, which made it useful when insomnia struck.
This clock doesn’t have the biggest or most brightest display of those we’ve tested. The time will be automatically set once you connect to the Wi-Fi network, so it’s clear. The clock also stands out because it has an all-black exterior without distracting lights or branding. The nightlight at the base of the clock can easily be turned on and off with the large button on top. These lights won’t allow you to read, but they will be bright enough to help you find your glasses or visit the restroom in the dark. You can also set an alarm, adjust the brightness and volume, select an alarm tone, and select a sleep timer duration using the buttons. Unlike some other smart alarm clocks, the Loftie does not use a voice assistant. Despite this, the clock will be updated via Wi-Fi regularly to add new features. The next morning, we found that more classical compositions were available than we could hear the day before, as well as more options for setting the alarm. As soon as any new features are made available, this guide will be updated accordingly. We will also add Spotify connectivity and Bluetooth capability.
- Not a dealbreaker, but it has flaws. We think $165 is too much for a clock that is intentionally edited in the selection of features along with the number of alarms. The display appears slightly darker out of focus when viewed up close, despite being readable up close. We would also like the option of increasing the display size for nearsighted sleepers like ourselves.
Sunrise Alarm Clocks that Are the Best
This clock was quieter than any other alarm we tried, and it helped us feel awake without the loud wake-up call. This clock is expensive, and navigating it is more difficult than on other clocks.
- Best for. Any individual who dislikes waking up to a wailing alarm in the morning, and who prefers a more gradual awakening.
- This is why it’s awesome. For those whose mornings are more tolerable with a wake-up light that doesn’t wake them up suddenly, we recommend the Philips SmartSleep Wake-Up Light HF3520. The luminous LED orb simulates dawn and dusk convincingly for a period of 30 minutes. This alarm clock helps you sleep better at night and is gentler than any other alarm clock we tested. A few of the extra features it has over other clocks we tried, including an FM tuner, backup alarm, and nature-themed alarms, make it stand out against the competition. We preferred this setting since it also included simulated sunlight and chirping birds.
The only Wake-Up lamp that we recommend is due to its bright light, which can also serve as a reading lamp. The 8-inch width of this nightstand clock makes it larger in comparison to the rest of our range. Since the Wake-Up serves both as a nightlight and as a wake-up device, it is a very efficient piece of design.
- Not a dealbreaker, but it has flaws. In comparison to the other clocks, the Wake-Up Light has a numerical digital display that is less than an inch tall, and thus a bit hard to read. It is easy to accidentally press one of the small, identical-sized buttons on the clock’s top, despite the clock’s small, tactile buttons being more intuitive than the computer’s display. Despite the FM radio’s convenience, the clock’s rear-facing speaker is tinny and disappointing, especially when you consider its price. LED bulbs should last for seven years when used regularly. This clock’s most distinctive quality will probably diminish over time since it cannot be replaced.
The Clock Is Elegant and Classic
A Riki analog clock is a very simple and easy to use clock that can be set up and read very easily. Specifically designed for those who are light sleepers and want to keep electronics out of their bedroom, this product is ideal for them.
- Best for. The 9″ Classic Alarm Clock is an excellent choice for individuals who appreciate design and who are searching for a simple, silent and easy-to-use alarm clock.
- This is why it’s awesome. This classic analog alarm clock has an easy to use digital interface, is dead silent, and has a classic analog design. Riki Watanabe was a Japanese modernist renowned for his minimalist designs, and the clock’s design includes a design award. Even in dim lighting, you can read the numerals on the face of this watch, which has a large face and half-inch-tall numerals. Thanks to its single button that combines functions for light and snooze, we found using the clock simple even when our eyes were closed. A small amount of lighting illuminates the face of the clock when you press the button. Compared to other clocks, we tested LED- and LCD-backed displays, this clock had an extremely bright display. After we acclimatized to the Riki’s peaceful illumination, even the next brightest nightlight seemed excessive.
In spite of the clock’s unmistakable round appearance, its base is actually indented so that it cannot slide away if it is bumped and to prevent it from rolling. The fact that this clock runs on batteries eliminates the need for a cord, as this clock runs on batteries. The Riki snooze button and two dial knobs are all that there are on the simple clock, so it is straightforward to set the time as well as the alarm.
As opposed to clocks that bzzzz faintly and tick loudly, this clock ticks completely silently, a distinction that you can’t achieve with the Alessi Optic 02 B or the Marathon Analog Desk Alarm Clock with Auto Night Light. Aside from the Riki’s alarm clock, the Riki makes no sounds other than the alarm, which is set to wake you, but not to be intrusive.
Not a dealbreaker, but a flaw. In addition to being unaffordable, the price of the Riki has risen a bit since we first reviewed it. Riki clocks are still available from Amazon and at other retailers, but we are investigating whether or not they have been permanently discontinued. In the event that more information becomes available, this guide will be updated.
It is more difficult to set the alarm to a certain minute as it is due to the dial face of the clock rather than setting it to a specific hour. This product is not constructed from wood, nor is it colored beechwood, but is made from ABS resin or polyamide.
Now that everybody and their grandmother uses a phone as an alarm clock, alarm clocks may seem a bit out of date. There are only seven pages of “alarm clocks” on Amazon, all nearly the same.
We Found a Few Great Features in An Ideal Alarm Clock that We Found Online Today:
- The text is easily readable. You should be able to read a clock at a glance, hands or no hands, whether or not you wear glasses or contacts.
- The alarm tone is pleasant. In an ideal alarm clock, you will be woken up without being startled. We prefer models with a pleasant tone and that can be customized to meet the user’s tastes.
- Dimmable. Sleep can be hampered by persistent, noticeable bright lights. An automatic or manually dimmable clock is highly recommended.
- Stable and compact. The hands of a half-awake alarm clock have a clumsy feel because they are heavy enough to counteract the low center of gravity.
- Easy to use. You shouldn’t need a PhD or YouTube tutorial to turn on or off your alarm or adjust snooze, brightness, and alarm volume.
- Unobtrusive. As soon as you enter your bedroom, the alarm clock shouldn’t be the first thing you notice. The living room should be left with statement pieces.
- Extra features. It provides several alarm sounds, a choice of different alarm tones, a USB port, Bluetooth, and also has internet connection capabilities.
We tracked down the ten best alarm clocks of 2018 based on the feedback we read on Amazon and other retailers. A few nights and days were spent using each clock. To test these four alarm clocks, we again scoured retail channels in 2021. We then woke up about 30 minutes earlier than we normally would to test the snooze feature and the alarm tone on each device. As a consequence, we could determine if the alarm actually waked us up, and if the clock actually disrupted our sleep pattern. As we envisaged the abuse an alarm clock may sustain over the course of its lifetime, the quality of materials and construction was also carefully examined. Many of the clocks we chose are small, which means they will fit on most nightstands without falling over. There is a large clock.
What to Expect
A crowdfund campaign for an analog alarm clock promises a lifetime of service. It costs $350, however. Even though it looked promising, the clock cannot be reviewed before it is official. We will update this guide with new information as it becomes available. We will also evaluate the Lenovo Smart Clock Essential against the Echo Dot with clock during the next round of testing.
Strong Competition From
Best for. Radio clocks with AM/FM that are simple and affordable.
With the double alarm clock-radio for less than $50, you can have all the essential features. Sangean clocks look like they belong on the shelves of drugstore electronics stores due to their cheap, glossy finish and overtly conspicuous logo. Due to its stylish simplicity, we were even more on board with Lenovo’s Smart Clock Essential.
iSmart Clock from Lenovo
Good for. Those who are looking for a color-display smart alarm.
There is just a slight difference in size between the Lenovo Smart Clock and the eos clock from Lenovo. Along with its touchscreen display and adjustable faces, the Smart Clock offers a variety of alarm settings while still allowing access to Google Assistant’s features. This screen is too bright and offers very few features to make the price worthwhile.
Alexa Spot from Amazon. We are unable to recommend Amazon’s Echo Spot since it has been discontinued. Its size and ease of use made it one of our favorite clocks, despite being the most expensive. As well as having the most features, this clock had the best price. Amazon’s Echo Show 8 and Echo Show 5 include features that were previously available only on the Echo Spot. The Echo Dot, available in a digital clock version, is also recommended in our guide to Alexa speakers.
This Marathon Analog Desk Alarm Clock has so many great features that it is definitely worth the price. A sensor nightlight system, dead-quiet movement, and a low-glow light complement the Marathon’s compact design. The only problem with this clock was that its numbers were so small that they were hard to read at a glance. Battery-operated alarm clocks are still a good option if you prefer on-the-go alarm clocks.
- Turn on/off Lexon Alarm Clock. Rather than pressing buttons or switches, you flip the whole clock over to turn on or off the alarm. There is “on” written across one side of the clock’s rubber coating, while “off” is written across the other. Since the Flip is so small, the display isn’t as clear as we’d like for daily alarm clock use. In the dark, its LCD display is hard to read, and in bright light, it is difficult to see. Also, the voice is high-pitched and annoying.
Clock by Alume for MoMA. Alume is a silver-cube design that measures 2.75 inches and is compact and minimalistic. With just a few clicks or taps, you can display any surface’s time, date, and temperature. We have one complaint: the snooze button does not work, and the LED display is too cold and bright for tired eyes. Many knockoffs exist that are significantly less expensive and function similarly.
Round Clock Capello Table. Capello has a styled gray fabric front and a small and lightweight LED display. It plugs straight into your wall and has an alarm clock function. The USB port on the back was unavailable for connecting our phones to play music. You can use the USB port to charge your phone overnight if you connect your phone to the port. Due to the clock’s lightweight construction, it was easily knocked over. There is no such thing as a real snooze button. You will not be able to register light touches. Snooze the alarm by pressing down firmly all throughout the clock. This clock’s LED display was distracting when it was set to the dimmest setting, even at the lowest color setting. Eventually, it was transferred.
An optical clock 02B. Here is a now discontinued model from Alessi that shows how low quality features compromise high design. Even next door, we could hear the tick-tock sound. However, the clock was so close to the bed that it made passing time painful. Furthermore, I found the plastic construction flimsy and the dial controls difficult to operate; compared to an alarm clock from a high-end electronics store, this clock resembled an alarm clock from a drugstore.