Alarm clocks have improved dramatically in recent years. In addition to the configurable alarms and snooze functions used on older versions, many new alarm clocks are Wi-Fi-powered and have a phone, email, and live chat functions. Other parts can include brightness adjustment, automated time syncing, and separate modes for weekday and weekend alarms. Most newer clocks enable users to choose from a variety of alarm tones and sound effects.
This guide will review the common features and functions of most alarm clocks on the market today, as well as our top picks for alarm clocks at various price points.
Common Features and Functions of Alarm Clocks
Most alarm clocks are different. However, characteristics shared by most models sold today have the following:
Alarm customization: An alarm clock, by design, enables users to configure alarms based on their particular requirement. Basic designs allow for one or two alert times, while more sophisticated versions can qualify for up to six or more. A few newer clocks now have dedicated weekday and weekend timers, allowing people to get extra sleep on days that they don’t function.
Snooze Button: When people push the snooze button, a delayed warning sounds, allowing them to sleep or relax for a few more minutes. Traditional alarm clocks have a 10-minute snooze option, but most modern versions enable users to adjust the snooze time as they see fit. Few alarm clocks often have ‘gradual wake up’ modes, which sound the alarm at lower levels and steadily escalate before the consumer presses the snooze button.
Visual Display: Some alarm clocks show additional detail, such as the current date and temperature, in addition to the present time. Many contemporary designs have LCD screens that can be brightened or dimmed to suit the user’s visual needs.
Time Projector: Most alarm clocks will project the time onto the ceiling or walls. This enables sleepers to check the time without getting out of bed.
Sleep music timer: Alarm clocks that enable music playback can have a sleep timer that allows users to listen to music for a specified period before falling asleep.
Volume: Some people like louder alarms, although others believe that quieter alarms work well. Alarm clocks generally allow users to set the volume to their preferred setting, and some also have vibrating alarms for gentler wake-ups. An alarm clock’s overall volume will range from less than 60 to more than 110 decibels (dB).
Sound quality: Most alarms, particularly those that play music, employ stereo speakers of varying size and power. The watts root mean square (or Watts RMS) frequency of a speaker determines the maximum volume it can accommodate without distorting. Radio alarm clocks with RMS power levels ranging from seven to twelve watts are common. It comes to frequency spectrum and other sound quality metrics, make sure to read the feedback before making an online purchase.
Automatic time sync: When the system is unplugged or the power goes out, users must manually change the time. However, some newer versions automatically sync based on an internal clock. These models can also auto-adjust for Daylight Saving Time.
Power source: Most alarm clocks on the market today are powered by AC electrical outlets, but some are battery-operated. In the event of a power loss, some AC-powered versions can be outfitted with backup batteries.
USB charging: Most alarm clocks, like many other electronic products on the market today, have USB ports that can be used to charge smartphones, laptops, and other devices.
Bluetooth compatibility: Most newer alarm clock versions can be wirelessly connected to Bluetooth speakers.
Smart features are gradually being introduced into the production of alarm clocks. These products use wireless networking to connect to apps across the internet, allowing them to host different uses and functionality. Intelligent alarms, such as the Amazon Echo Location, often allow you to use voice commands to set timers or make phone calls. It is also possible to listen to music, visit the internet, or watch a television show. These features are frequently hands-off, helping you get more done without setting the alarm or picking up the remote manually.
These features give your clock a new twist, allowing it to do more than wake you up on time.
Essential Considerations for Alarm Clock Shoppers
When shopping for a suitable alarm clock and comparing various brands in the market, keep the following questions in mind:
How much should you pay for an alarm clock? Classic alarm clocks are commonly available for $40 or less from most online stores, and some newer versions are priced similarly. Any advanced models, on the other hand, will cost up to $130 or more. Finally, before comparing various alarm clock types, you should establish a reasonable budget.
Does the clock allow for several customizable alarms? Some users only need one or two alarms, but those with varying work schedules or other day-to-day variations can need a clock that enables them to configure several alarms during the week.
Are there multiple alarm sound features? This is a significant factor for people whose sound and music tastes vary from one night to the next.
Can you adjust the snooze alarm? Although typical alarm clocks have a default snooze time of around 10 minutes, some consumers can choose an adjustable snooze.
Is there automatic sync? Automatically synchronizing alarms could be more suited for people whose homes are vulnerable to power outages.
What is the volume range? Few alarm clocks are softer than others, and users can choose an alarm clock depending on their desired volume level. It’s worth noting that many alarm clock vendors don’t define the decibel range for the alarm volume.
Is there a visual display? Some users can benefit from a visual display that shows the date, temperature, and other details, and presentations that project the time onto the ceiling or wall surfaces allow sleepers to check the time without rolling over.
What is the power source? If the alarm clock is AC-powered, the length of the cord may be a vital consideration for users based on their bed’s proximity to an electrical socket (though extension cords can be used). Alarms with backup batteries are typically appropriate for people who experience repeated power outages.
How big is the alarm clock, and what’s the weight? Whereas most alarm clocks are lightweight and compact, others are more suited to small spaces and travel than others.
Is there a USB port feature? USB port feature is very beneficial because it allows customers to charge their tablet, mobile phone and other devices while using the clock.
Is it compatible with Bluetooth speakers? Due to their wireless connectivity, Bluetooth speakers could be much more suited for specific bedroom setups than wired speakers.
Is there a trial period? Most alarm clocks, often higher-end models, enable consumers to return their alarm within a specific time frame. Most, on the other hand, do not have trial times.
How long does the warranty coverage last? Most alarm clock warranties protect the device for up to a year, but some alarm clocks do not come with warranties.
Alarm Clock Alternatives
For this section, we would examine some low-cost alternatives to an alarm clock. This is for those who prefer not to purchase alarm clocks:
Phone Alarm: Almost all phones sold today (as well as older models) have an alarm clock, several alarm settings, and various sound effects and ringtones to please consumers of varying tastes. Apart from the initial cost of the handset, these features are free to use; while mobile price points differ by manufacturer or vendor, the average cost of a new mobile in 2017 was more than $500. If you do own a functioning mobile, the bottom line is that using your device’s pre-installed alarming function is a cheap option.
Smart lights: If you don’t like loud alarm clocks, you can still use lighting to make a silent alarm. Light will stimulate the body at certain times of day, suppressing melatonin levels and automatically signaling to the body that it is time to wake up and begin a new day.
Alarm Apps: The typical alarm clock app costs $1 or $2 to import into a smartphone, tablet, or other mobile gadgets, and many are free. Most of the alarm, snooze, and automatic time sync features found in top-rated alarm clocks are included in apps.
Sound management is an important aspect for designers, contractors, and architects to remember when constructing residential and industrial buildings, whether new buildings or remodeling existing buildings.Although entirely sound-proof windows are a fallacy, selecting the right glazing scheme can be a large determinant in the project’s performance, sound-proofing, and living healthily of its residents as you choose windows for a venture.
From the crazy busy outer world, our residences should be quiet retreats. We should close the window against the weather and shut the light curtains, but it isn’t always just an easy remedy when it comes to shielding yourself from unnecessary noise.
Noise is no doubt just an inconvenience for those who live in crowded areas, near train lines, or air traffic; it may have a serious effect on the quality of living.
As a high percentage of the noise we hear falls from our screens, the perfect solution to your issues might be to install them.
When the windows have holes or cracks in the frames, sound-proof glass won’t do you any good. Together with great weather stripping, an airtight system provides a shield to block out unnecessary noise. In conjunction, insulated vinyl frames lined with foam also obstruct outside sound and allow the window frames to be sound-proof.
Check for windows that may have a window spacer mechanism that is non-metal. What is that intended to indicate? The gap of the window is the element that holds the two panes apart. This component is made up of synthetic rubber coated with a sealant in a non-metal spacer device. Which means it has greater insulating properties than its equivalents made of metal.
Basically, whatever you can do to secure and insulate your home properly also increases its sound output. So, mostly as a bonus, you’ll also get higher overall energy quality for windows and reduced utility costs as you sound-proof your house. Now that’s certainly a justification for making a lot of noise and installing the new windows by seeking a reputable window repair contractor.
Top Sound-Proof Windows Used in Eliminating Noises
- Blinds Reducing Noise
To shield you from light and give you confidentiality, most window blinds are created. Some blinds, though, do more than that by trapping noise. If you reside in a noisy area, you should probably invest in such blinds.
Note, they’re not going to be dull. Exquisite noise-blocking blinds, like Roman shades or simply laid-back curtains, can also be selected. Blinds are also a great alternative since they are simple to configure and go along with your current decoration.
- Laminated Windows
Many professionals believe that you can use laminated glass if you want superior sound insulation in your windows. A translucent sheet of plastic squished between two exterior layers of glass panes has laminated screens. This plastic insert acts to deaden sound and noises that are conveyed more readily through the glass.
This is usually called a high-end glass function, so incorporating it will increase the project cost to substitute a window. You may plan to pay about $950 for a laminated addition on a regular double panel window.
You can also get safety mechanisms for that value, to high-quality sound-proofing, even though laminated glass is usually much harder to crack than normal glazing.
- Acrylic Magnetic Glass
When it refers to noise, the explanation of why windows offer a particular problem is that they are smaller than other building areas, like walls. They still have room in the air, causing noise to find a way through to your home. Through using magnetic acrylic glass material, you can turn the volume down, though.
PVC frames, and even a magnetic strip, keep the material, at least 3 mm thick, in position. This works by building an aura, thus suppressing noise. They have several advantages, besides sound-proofing the walls. These involve improved insulation and enabling the flow of more sunlight.
They are very simple to install to apply icing to the cake. By following the manufacturer’s directions after purchasing the bottle, you will easily do it yourself.
- Number of Panes and Sound Suppression Impact
Although you would believe that additional glass layers are equal to higher noise control levels, that isn’t always the reality. Many sound-proof specialists agree that triple pane windows offer considerably higher sound-proofing efficiency standards than double pane windows.
Single or double panel windows are also enough to give you the characteristics of noise and echo suppression you require. Choosing the best match for you determines the degree of noise you are trying to block and the kind of glass you’re doing the jobs properly.
As stated earlier, the sum of space between the glass panels of glass works to suppress excess noise. It will be easy to infer that triple – glazed windows provide greater sound safety and cost far less than laminated windows than their double-pane alternatives.
But not all professionals, however, see it this way. Researches have currently demonstrated that triple pane windows do not provide better sound isolation than regular double pane windows.
They offer you much of the sound-proofing advantages of laminated glass at a much lower price, but double-pane windows can do the job just fine if you reside in an extremely noisy place.
How Does Windows Soundproofing Function?
You need to create a membrane between the signal and the ear that captures the sound to minimize noise. With walls, floors, and windows to prevent sound waves from accessing, residences do that.
To improve the capacity of a window to suppress noise and raise its STC value, the manufacturer of windows ought to:
- Add Mass
- Add room for air
- A glass-plastic-glass sandwich which further decreases noise emissions using a laminated glass
Using the sound transmission class (STC) measure, how effectively an item blocks noise can literally be calculated. Many window producers have followed the STC scale as a means of showing the sound-proofing qualities of their goods, taking their inspiration from the acoustics sector.
Windows that are categorized as sound-proof, though, typically come with a price to match. However, you will also reduce the quality of sound by knowing various window characteristics and what makes one window stronger than another for blocking noise.
The sound propagation of a window can be influenced by a few factors, including the glass thickness and space availability between the window frames. Laminated windows may have extra sound-proofing characteristics that can help minimize excess noise.
The multiple options can be pretty confusing. Take your time, though, to narrow down your choices based on your individual needs. For instance, variables such as the noise’s presence and severity and your preferred alternative’s longevity need to be weighed.