Verilux Rise & Shine Natural Alarm Clock

by Tiago

Verilux Rise and Shine Natural Alarm Clock

We already covered a great amount of alarm clocks with the most special ones being the Grenade and the Flying alarms, these two really make you get out of bed in order to turn the alarm off so you can start the 10 minute siesta before bath/breakfast. Another honorable mention goes to the Rev-Olution alarm that fits the car fanatics style and I’m sure they love it.

But… enough talking about other alarm clocks, so lets start today’s subject – the Verilux Rise & Shine Natural Alarm Clock.

As you can see on the image this is a 2-in-1 gadget that combines a stylish bedside lamp + alarm clock (it can be considered a 3-in-1 gadget since you can listen to radio as well.), this means that you will probably save space on your bedside table, and money too. Actually scratch that money detail because this Verilux Alarm Clock costs $150 which I consider to be very expensive for an alarm clock.

There are 2 special features that caught my attention, I hope they get yours too:

  • the use of nature sounds to wake you up instead of the “beep-beep” sound that other normal alarms have, there are 8 beautiful sounds like ocean surf, spring rain and song birds
  • after setting up the alarm clock with the desired hour of when-to-wake-up, the time will come and the lamp will gradually brighten its lights, the same effect happens with the sound that will increase the volume

The Verilux Rise & Shine Natural Alarm Clock comes in 2 colors: ivory (similar to bleach) and graphite (dark blue/black), it’s available at the Verilux Online Shop.

PS – Just in case you are wondering what kind of alarm clock the Coolest Gadgets writers have, mine is a simple Sony with radio that was bought 10 years ago and still works like it was new, it’s nothing fancy but does the job perfectly.

[found at BookOfJoe]

4 reviews or comments

NewsView Says: March 16, 2007 at 8:46 pm

If you are considering the purchase of this product, please consider my outrageous experience with the Verilux Rise & Shine lamp, made worse by the fact that the company refused to back their warranty.

It took three tries on this lamp to get one that was “less defective” than all the rest. About the only problem I did NOT experience in what I am about to relate is the commonly reported issue wherein the light bulb buzzes when set to a low output level. I read on one site that screwing it in tighter helps. Maybe that’s why it has yet to surface.

The first lamp I purchased contained a non-functional internal speaker (and since there is only one internal speaker there was no sound except when bypassing the mono speaker by hooking up the included pillow speaker). In addition, there was a pretty obvious nick in the plastic housing right next to the LCD display. Finally, the upper and lower halves of the lamp body were not neatly joined. As a result, the edges felt a bit rough and uneven.

The second lamp I received in exchange seemingly came out of the mold wrong. The lamp shade wouldn’t sit straight on the little lip that juts out below the socket. Not only did the lip appear somewhat off, but the shade itself was cockeyed. As if that wasn’t enough, the bright white shade also had a beige stain or blemish on it. The light bulb leaned at an angle because the socket was skewed. As for the cosmetic appearance, the edges you see illustrated in the photo show a plastic “face” in which the LCD panel is mounted. Those edges were rippled and pitted as if they ran one too many through the mold without cleaning it out (or it didn’t come out of the mold cleanly, in any event). There was also a scratch — once again straight out of the retail packaging. And since the lampshade is not the standard configuration, I had no choice but to put up the misalignment, call Verilux directly to inquire about a new shade/lamp, or make the 40-mile trip back to the store to return the lamp — again.

As per the instruction manual, I called to report the problem to Verilux. Since Verilux offers an impressive three-year warranty covering defects in workmanship and materials, I expected a sympathetic response. No such luck. I might have been able to ignore the misaligned bulb if they had simply sent me a new shade, but Verilux refused, and in contradiction to their own user manual, suggested I make a third trip to the retailer.

At this point you are probably wondering if I returned the second lamp for my money back. Not exactly. Instead it became a challenge of the “mission impossible” sort. So back to the store I went. The third lamp looks much better constructed from a cosmetic viewpoint. However, in contrast to the first two lamps, it took 20 minutes to get a nearby station to come in clearly because the antenna continually picked up static. Initially, walking in front of the lamp or pressing the lamp’s buttons seemed to trigger this static reaction in the FM tuner as well. I’m not sure if the tuner circuitry is just not quite as good or if there is a slight grounding fault, but on a lark I picked up the Verilux Rise & Shine power adapter off the floor, and there I found my static culprit. The adapter is apparently leaking RF (and, yes, I do use a quality surge protector as recommended by the user manual)! After repositioning the adapter — sometimes placing the RF-leaking component at a right angle will help in these situations — I unplugged the lamp for 30 seconds as suggested by the user manual to “reset” the electronics. In 18 or so hours since, I have had almost no static generated by simply walking in front of the lamp; however, I still had to reposition the FM antenna again today due to apparent station drift (to pick up the same FM station I was listening to the night before). By contrast, other clock radios positioned in the same spot do not even require their antennas extended — and few of my analog clock radios exhibit FM station drift, either.

At this point, I am debating whether the tuner issue is evidence of an impending failure, or simply cause to request a new power adapter from Verilux. As for overall build quality, this third lamp doesn’t have any scratches, pits or ripples in the plastic seams — BUT IT WOBBLES! In other words, my current Verilux Rise & Shine lamp won’t sit flat even on the same surface on which the previous two lamps of the same kind sat securely. It was so bad, I had to apply museum putty beneath the lamp base to keep it from rocking when I press the buttons.

Is this ridiculous, or what?

What is even more ridiculous is that Verilux offers a three year warranty. However, four days into my ownership experience they have already refused to remedy defects in the materials and workmanship, which the warranty card states the company will guarantee for three years! Translation? Don’t expect Verilux to help you if any aspect of this all-eggs-in-one-basket design fails.

As the cliche goes, “The third time is the charm.” As such, I doubt continuing to exchange my Verilux Rise & Shine lamp will result in a better product as I will just trade one problem for another, for another, for another. Poor quality control is apparently par for the course, which is sad because this is otherwise a fantastic, space-saving concept.

If you are still interested in this product, I’ll comment briefly on who I think will benefit most from this product. This is a lamp uses full spectrum light. Those who are recovering “night owls” and want to learn how to get their body clock readjusted to morning wake cycles will probably benefit most from this lamp (since full spectrum light will trigger hormonal changes in the brain to “reset” one’s internal clock). By the same token, if you use a full spectrum lamp for reading at night it may trigger just the opposite — cuing your brain to continue pumping out daytime hormones when it’s time to shut them off for the night. For this reason, potential buyers would do well to keep a conventional book light on hand for nighttime reading, in my non-medically qualified opinion. The second reason I mention this is because the Verilux Rise & Shine bulbs are 12-volt proprietary “Xenon” bulbs that retail for $19.99 (and good luck finding them locally). Each Xenon bulb is rated at 2,000 hours, which may not last any longer than conventional bulbs (and you can’t substitute regular bulbs, either). Finally, this lamp may not grow annoyingly bright enough to wake you if you are the type who may turn away from it in your sleep. Although it is bright enough to read by — and easy on the eyes since it contains none of the usual yellow colorcast generated by incandescent lighting — the Verilux Rise & Shine lamp would probably work best in pairs (one at either side of the bed so that turning away from the lamp when set to wake is not so easy).

Despite my experience, I sincerely hope that Verilux will continue to offer this product. Having said that, I hope they read their customer reviews as a means to improve an otherwise promising product. Important improvements would include a digital tuner, stereo speakers and a bulb rated at at least 4,000 hours. Combining so many convenient features in a single product — roughly 6.5″ wide at the base and 20″ tall — is an excellent concept, which deserves further development. I’m just not sure if the present street price of $149.99 is justified in view of the numerous quality control issues.

Al Says: March 17, 2007 at 5:58 am

Thanks for the interesting comment and sharing your experience NewsView. I think yours is the official longest comment we’ve ever received.

caturday Says: April 3, 2007 at 4:38 pm

WTF, dude. Can you not open the package at the store
before driving the 40 minutes home?

Make one more trip. Ask for the manager.
work with the manager to find one that worksd, or get your money back. $150 for something that costs 20$ to make is outrageous, the least it could do is actually work as advertised, and be free from defects in materials in wormanship. By the way, refusing to honeor that warranty is FRAUD and you could enter a complaint with your states Attornety general. In fact, you really ought to!!

vicki Says: October 9, 2009 at 12:13 pm

Verilux Rise & Shine Lamp. I have an original one. The only thing that stopped working on it was the LED Display Light so I can’t see the time at night. Everything else is fine and I love this lamp even though the shade is gone, and base has faded from sunlight on one side. They discontinued the originals for a few years before re-introducing it with a new design. I was going to buy one for backup but now I am glad I didn’t. Like previous comments from the person who had so much trouble with several new ones, I hope that Verilux continues to go back to the drawing board to get it right. I wouldn’t give mine up for anything and I rue the day it breaks/fails and I can’t replace it.

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