Sunday, May 07, 2006

Review of the iHome iH5.

Here we go. This is going to be the oft promised and slightly anticipated review of the iHome iH5.

To start, I got my first one at work. When I brought it home it was pretty good although there were some glaring problems. It makes you wonder if these things actually get tested and if the engineers take the prototypes home for a few nights.

As many others have noted. The display was really, really bright even on the lowest setting. The alarm also has a slow wake feature where the music will start out at a quiet level and slowly level up. I would have expected this process to take anywhere from thirty seconds to a minute to slowly rouse me out of deep slumber and back to life. SDI Technologies, the maker of the iHome had a different idea. The music went from quiet to too loud in the span of about eight seconds. The increase wasn't gradual enough and the non conrollable max level for the alarm was just too high.

Other than these things I considered annoyances more than deal breakers, the device was really quite nice. It's attractive and small enough to sit on my nightstand. There are also some other neat features that warrant it's hundred dollar price tag. Overall I was satisfied and would have graded it a B.

I discovered that there is a Rev B of the product that reportedly started appearing in the supply chain back in December. It sounded like many of the annoyances had been fixed and reworked to be a little less obtrusive. It was my intent to find one when I recieved more at my store and swap it out with the first one I purchased.

Then the display failed. It really wasn't too big a deal but it was strange. I came home one day to find about a third of the LCDs that form the numbers to be non functional. Nothing happened to the device while I was at work. I guess it was just a faulty unit. I boxed it up and took it to Mobile with N when we went down for Easter.

The revised version that I picked up earns an A in my gradebook. All the issues that I mentioned above have been fixed including the gentle wake feature as well as the super bright display light. I've been using it consistently for several weeks now and am very satisfied with the purchase.

For anyone who hates the beep of the alarm in the morning and who is looking for a change as I was, I would recommend the iHome. It's nice to wake up to whatever music I'd like. At this point, I don't really have any complaints about the device.

I know this wasn't so much a review as much as a description of my experience with the device. I'd like to point you to several full length, in depth reviews that I found helpful incase you want to learn more.


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