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August 30, 2005 12:03 AM

Broken: Timex alarm clock

TimexEchoing our recent post on hotel room alarm clocks, Alex B. sends in this gem. He writes:

The buttons needed to change the time are nowhere near the actual 'clock' part of this device - instead they are up near the CD-related controls.


u dont really expect timex to spend the extra 4 cents apiece for 2 more buttons do u? ;)

Posted by: gmangw at August 30, 2005 12:45 AM

the thing that is broken is that the clock doesn't say that fast forward and rewing are used for seting the time while holding time set broken

Posted by: john russell at August 30, 2005 03:15 AM



i guess i should check my spelling

Posted by: john russell at August 30, 2005 03:16 AM

while we're correcting your grammar...




Posted by: Bob at August 30, 2005 04:53 AM

wow,that's still a pretty nice alarm clock for a hotel, i bet it's no Comfort Inn.

Posted by: noname at August 30, 2005 05:31 AM

Off topic, but I have owned several Timex clock radios and the clock backlight goes after 3 or 4 years! I no longer have any Timex clocks...

Posted by: anon at August 30, 2005 07:47 AM

Yeah I agree. They don't make them how they used to. Takes a lickin and keep on tickin huh.

My girlfriend is more of a Timex than a Timex.. she has taken many l...never mind.

Posted by: Tim at August 30, 2005 09:51 AM

Bob wrote:

while we're correcting your grammar...



Actuallly, you are correcting his spelling

Posted by: Mountain Dewd at August 30, 2005 10:18 AM

And look, I put 3 L's in actually

Posted by: Mountain Dewd at August 30, 2005 10:19 AM

But since you didn't say FIRST all is forgiven

Posted by: Sam at August 30, 2005 11:57 AM

They need to put instruction books in the hotel rooms.

Posted by: Fayth at August 30, 2005 12:34 PM

As a general rule, buttons for related functions should be grouped together. This design is a bit poor, all in the name of cost savings by making the CD control buttons to do double duty.

Posted by: Carlos Gomez at August 30, 2005 12:37 PM

I don't's a pretty standard configuration for adjusting the time. Since they don't generally see it as a function performed very often, it wouldn't be practical to have separate buttons. Besides, having the combination of buttons helps prevent accidental changes.

Just a thought...

Posted by: Joey at August 30, 2005 01:48 PM

The problem with buttons on the front of a flimsy thing like a clock radio is you have to press them so hard, you end up pushing the 6oz unit right off the back of the nightstand. Since the time set button toggles the function of the ffw-rew buttons on top, you need both hands to press buttons and don't have a free hand to hold the unit itself to keep it from crashing to the floor.

That to me is most broken. But the poorly marked, awkwardly located buttons on top are pretty broken too.

Posted by: AndrewT at August 30, 2005 02:26 PM

Well, Mr. Dewd, punctuation isn't spelling, therefore i used 'grammar' as an umbrella term. i'm right and you're wrong. so there.

Posted by: Bob at August 30, 2005 03:26 PM

First of all, we are not getting into another grammar fight. Second of all, do you like my new user name?

--The poster formerly known as nickd

Posted by: nick'd at August 30, 2005 04:32 PM

These days Hotels usually have a TV channel that tells you how to access pay-per-view movies, free TV channels, etc. Perhaps you should recommend an entire channel devoted to "How To Set The Time on The Clock Radio." It may contain a warning that occupants are prohibited from retiring until the clock has been set!

Posted by: Onery at August 30, 2005 05:49 PM

To get back to the topic of discussion, I have to agree with AndrewT about the placement of the buttons.

noname, I don't see where it says that this is in a hotel. All it says is that this post is similar to the post about alarm clocks in hotels

Posted by: Sean P at August 30, 2005 05:53 PM

I always change the time while I'm fast-forwarding "Time After Time".

Posted by: PatheticPeripatetic at August 30, 2005 05:57 PM

Personally, I think that this configuration is fine. The CD foreward and backward skip buttons are probably more commonly used than the clock setting ones. And when you need to set the time, it may confuse you for 1/2 a second and then you'll logically try pressing the arrows. This configuration just saves space by having the foreward/backward buttons have multiple functions.

Posted by: no one at August 30, 2005 06:12 PM

Does that clock really have a battery? (Judging by the 'BATT LOW' light, which appears to be on.)

Why would a clock radio/CD stereo that big be battery powered?

Posted by: a_cheesepuff at August 30, 2005 06:14 PM

The problem is the battery low light.

And the display.

And the buttons.

The display is distorted,the clock should not be battery powered, and turning on a light just makes the battery drain faster.

Posted by: fdsafsdf at August 30, 2005 06:55 PM

I submitted this one. The clock was in a hotel and the time was totally wrong initially (showing that the staff didn't know or care how to fix it). There was no battery in it either, hence the battery low indication.

I disagree this is consistent with how most clock radios work... partly because instead of 'hold down set while pressing +/-', this clock (and similar ones from Timex) have you press then release time set, and then use other buttons.

BTW I have a similar-looking Timex clock radio without a CD player and they use different buttons for adjusting the time (since there's no back/next CD buttons to re-use). So the user experience isn't even consistent within similar looking products from the same manufacturer.

For what it's worth, it took me like 5 minutes to figure out how to change the time. Clearly since I am so intelligent, it must be broken :-)

Posted by: Alex B at August 30, 2005 07:20 PM

Another comment about the battery low light... this unit was plugged into AC power. Presumably the battery is only there to keep time in case of short power outages. I doubt it could actually turn on the radio or alarm or CD if the power was still out.

Posted by: Alex B at August 30, 2005 07:22 PM

i have owned 2 different timex alarm clocks. they both needed to be plugged in, but in the event of a power outage a backup battery would maintain everything except the display. the alarm would function perfectly when powered by the battery, altho i cant speak for possible radio or cd player functionality, not having had either. and yes, they had specific buttons for changing the time. i think that adding a second label over each of the >> and

Posted by: gmangw at August 30, 2005 07:35 PM

The buttons *have* to be on top, or the device couldn't be operated with one hand.

For all the clock radios I have ever operated, this one behaves as expected. The labels are a little small and hard to read, but that's it.

Posted by: DaveC426913 at August 31, 2005 09:14 AM

"I submitted this one. The clock was in a hotel.." -Alex B

Ha, in your face Sean P.

thank you.

have a nice day.

Posted by: noname at August 31, 2005 12:59 PM

No way you can operate this thing with one hand... to go into "time set" mode, you have to push a button that's on its front (not on top), under the clock face. So you have to use 2 hands... one behind it to keep it from sliding back, and the other to push the button. I guess you could wedge it against the wall and do it one-handed that way, but its round shape wouldn't help in that case.

And this does *not* behave like other clock radios -- on most, you have to hold down time set at the same time you adjust the time. On this one, you press and release time set, then you press the adjustment buttons. So if you expect it to work normally and keep time set held down, you don't get anywhere.

Posted by: Alex B at August 31, 2005 04:27 PM

While it appears that noname was right I still maintain that the post did not expressly say that the clock was in a hotel, although I guess I may have been implied.

As far as the radio working on the batteries, I have an alarm clock radio and the radio alarm goes off at a slightly reduced volume on the battery backup.

Posted by: Sean P at August 31, 2005 06:09 PM

Alex B- You are broken for being 'so intelligent'. Go back to school and get dumb.

Posted by: The Wonderful Werld of DoE at September 2, 2005 07:11 PM

This is why, when I stay at a motel, as a personal favor to the next occupants of the room, I always pre-set the alarm to 4 am. And if possible, set it to a nice loud rock station for them. Sweet dreams!

Posted by: Hooya at September 20, 2005 04:07 PM

I own this alarm clock.

The real problem is that if a CD is in, you can'tget a beeping wakeup alarm unless the unit looses power.

If it loses power then it does sound an alarm.

Posted by: kevin at February 21, 2006 02:24 PM

I am now on my 3rd Timex Indiglo MP3/Line In Alarm Clock and have found 2 major problems - The main one is the backup batteries don't save the time or alarm settings (but registers that there are batteries in it!) and the second is the off button for the alarm sometimes has a short and will cause it to keep going off like a smoke detector until I unplug it(which, of course resets the time, date and alarm!). I still have my old Timex Indiglo alarm clock (with out the colors and line-in) that works like a champ. So I'm taking back my 3rd one and giving up...

Posted by: Jenn at May 31, 2006 10:48 AM

This radio is similiar to my Sony Clock/Radio/CD Player. It didn't come with a manual so it took me three years to figure out that you could use it as a clock. Why? You MUST have three AA batteries to power the clock computer regardless if you have the radio batteries or not. So this is how you must power the radio: 3 AA batteries (clock) and 6 C batteries (to be portable) and/or the AC cord.

Posted by: Jesse at June 26, 2006 11:39 PM

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