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VINE VOICEon September 28, 2013
Color: Black|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The iHome FM clock radio and dock is a mostly great device to have. It has the latest Apple dock, Lightning, as well as USB and auxiliary cable ports in the back. So if you've got an iOS device from 2012 or more recent, you can dock it right onto the top of the stereo, and the little built-in backing bars will hold it up as a mount. If you've got an older device you can use the old Apple USB cables and plug it into the back, and if you've got something with a headphone jack (e.g. a non-iOS media player, an Android phone) you can use an auxiliary cable.

Setup is mostly easy: if you dock your device into the top, it'll automatically sync the time and date through your iPhone/iPad/iPod. Note that you're supposed to download their app first for it to work properly. If you don't have any of those handy, you can manually set up the time and date pretty easily with the Clock button on top and the +/- buttons next below it.

Setting alarms is pretty intuitive, and you can have two separate alarms. The alarms can be set to radio, buzzer, dock, or USB port, and you can also choose the volume that the alarm comes on at (very cool). You can also choose if you want the alarm to come on seven days a week, only on weekdays, or only on weekends. Use the snooze button to change the brightness level on the text on the display.

Sound quality is good if not amazing. Volume tends to be on the high side so just be careful. The first time the alarm went off for me (at 5 am) it scared the crap out of me because it was so loud. The equalizer is just your basic stuff: treble, bass, and balance. Nothing special to customize to the music you're listening to or anything, so you'll have to do that on your device.

The dock charges iPods/iPads/iPhones while they're connected, and that includes the USB port. This goes to Android phones too, as they will also charge if you plug them into the USB port with a USB/micro-USB cable. Note, however, that Android phones will only play through the stereo with an auxiliary cable, so you still need to have both if you want them to be charged while being played.

I have a few gripes about this product. 1) It's a bit big. Not a huge deal but if just takes up a big amount of space on the nightstand, especially with a lamp on the nightstand as well. 2) I wish the support bars on top could be retracted when not in use. They're ugly on their own and it looks really stupid when they're just sitting up. 3) This could really use a remote. The picture shows one but it actually doesn't come with one, and as a media stereo it desperately needs one.

All in all, though, a mostly great stereo that was a great upgrade from my previous cheap and basic clock radio.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon September 23, 2013
Color: Black|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I really really like this thing.

In terms of features, there are plenty. There is an option to set two different alarms, each of which can be set to go off on weekdays only, weekends only, or seven days a week. So you could set one alarm for getting up early for work, and a second alarm for weekdays only where you sleep in a bit. Battery backup (with two AA batteries included) keeps you safe from midnight power outages.

Setting this thing up was easy - mainly plug it into a power outlet, dock your phone (or iPad...more on this in a minute) and the clock autosets to what your iOS device says. Very easy.

You have the option of waking up to a buzzer (which is more of a light pinging, not an obnoxious BZZZT sound...also nifty, the frequency of the pings becomes more rapid after about thirty seconds.), an FM station (no AM, alas, so half star off), a song off your device, or a playlist. I set up a Wakey Wakey playlist that starts light (Haydn) and ends raucous (Judas Priest). Included snooze (albeit with a rather small snooze bar) gives you nine minutes of blessed relief before the alarm kicks in again. Also kind of nifty: the snooze time is programmable. :)

As long as we're talking about programming, while there is a somewhat bewildering array of buttons on the top, iHome provides an app (called iHome Set in the App Store, free) that allows you to easily do setup of the clock radio from your phone...just run the app, dock it, and you have access to all of the clock settings, alarm settings, what it will play, etc, from your device screen. Very easy and I recommend getting this app when you receive the radio. It really does give you access to more options than you probably thought a clock radio should have.

Now then, about the dock. It is a lightning adapter on the top and has enough juice to charge an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch. I suppose you could attach a Lightning-30 pin adapter to it and use it with any device, however the 30 pin adapter is kind of big and I would worry about the durability of that solution. There is a USB port on the device where you could connect a 30 pin charging cable and work with a legacy device. But (and it's a big one), there isn't enough juice in that port to charge an iPad...only an iPhone/iPod. Also, there is an aux/in port where you could connect something else, but you aren't going to get the kind of flexibility you'd have with an iOS device. Finally, although the picture shows a remote, this model (iDL91) did not ship with one. In fact, the picture looks like it's docking a 1st Gen iPad there, when only the iPad 4th gen will dock natively. Probably a stock photo, so make sure you're reading the descriptions so you get the right one. This one has a Lightning connector.

So half star off for all of that. I also kind of wish there were a better guide that helps me find the Lightning connector in the dark. I kind of feel like I'm scratching up the bottom of my iPhone trying to get it plugged in. There is a rubber bumper on the top of the clock radio that provides a cushion for your prized phone to sit on. I will say that the Lightning connector is likely not long enough to work with mega-protective cases like the Otterbox Defender...if you have a bulletproof case on your phone, you'll probably have to remove the case before you dock.

All in all, I'm glad I got this - it's very flexible and meets many different needs.

UPDATE 14-Jan: A week or so ago the clock has started to show some strange behavior - I would wake up to the alarm at 6:00 but the clock display would read 3:00 am (eg the clock knew the correct time but was displaying 3:00 am). When waking up shortly after three am I would see the display would be at three am but wouldn't change. Time up to three am would be fine. Very weird. Removing the iPhone from the dock would reset the display to the proper time. Neither updating firmware (no updates) nor resetting the unit did anything to solve the problem.

I finally went into the iHome Set app and turned off automatic time syncing. This fixed the problem. In lieu of automatic time syncing there is a sync button on the unit itself that does the same thing manually. I don't think the clock is going to gain/lose a whole lot of time so I wouldn't consider auto time sync a necessity for using this clock.

I do have to say I was a little disappointed in the iHome tech support website - it didn't offer much in the way of help and basically boiled down to "reset the unit and hopefully things will turn out fine." I'm also not sure why this unit started with this's not like I made any radical changes to anything. Still, something to be aware of.
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on December 2, 2013
This is probably the best ihome I've ever had except for a minor problem. Though I still give a strong five stars.

The problem is that I use an otterbox case for my iPhone 5 and the phone does not fit in the stand. However this can be resolved by simply attaching the charging cable (comes with iPhone when bought) to the back of the ihome. All the functions are the same and the volume control and other buttons are in perfect sync, even though a wire is used.

However, the radio has a charger which will work for most cases that do not have obstruction around the charging port. I've tested this with lifeproof cases and otterbox cases. If you have a slim case where the charging port is easily accessible, then no worries.

Overall I find this an amazing ihome which is worth the money, and had great features.
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on November 19, 2013
Color: Black|Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The iHome dual charging station is excellent for quickly charging your ipad, iphone, or ipod, and streaming media from the devices. The sound quality is pretty good given its size and cost, and it works well in a bedroom or bathroom: the volume can be turned up without distortion, and the sound doesn't become flat or tinny at either treble or bass output. The built-in dock is a lightning port, so you need a fifth generation iPad or iPhone 5 to use it; otherwise, there's a USB port that you can charge off of (which I used for my iPhone 4).

I deducted a star because there is definitely a process to getting the device setup with an iPhone 4 or 4s: you need to download an application before the iHome's functions are accessible.
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on January 5, 2014
Seriously? I am so confused by companies who don't get it. EVERYONE uses a case with their phone and iPad, why would you not add 2mm that's all it would take to the pin adapter so that it will charge with a case on? I have a SLIM fit case about as thick as a large paperclip on the bottom and that's enough that it keeps it from making the connection. DUMB
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on February 18, 2014
Okay you've heard that before, but this is really the best thing I've purchased in a long time.
This thing looks terrific, sounds fabulous, works great, and makes my iPad sound like a home stereo.
This is absolutely worth every penny I paid, and in fact, I ordered another one, so I can have one in different rooms.
Find one cheap and buy this, it's great.
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on March 8, 2014
Bought this device for listen to Internet radio from my iphone in the kitchen.
This model is awesome! Sound is much better than I expected to get from such a small device! I was particularly surprised by the bass. Very easy setup using the free application - just 2 seconds! Availability fm radio - is a big plus. Hopefully this device will please me very long.
P.S. Really it is impossible to use when the phone is in the case. But this is a small flaw.
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on June 27, 2015
After years of having cheapo clock radios in the $20 range I upgraded to this and what a difference! Clear sound! Accurate time! (Syncs to iphone time when you dock your iPhone or iPad). Easy to use! I took it out of the box and figured out most everything in 10 minutes. Those who need to sleep in darkness will like the brightness adjustments as you can turn it all the way down. I wish it was a little smaller but I do like the nice big time display that I can see without my glasses. I just hope this lasts at least 5 years. Compared to some of the other junk out there, I thought this was a good value at $73 on Amazon! Btw. There is NO remote control with this unit. The only thing that might be a problem is that the Lighting docking "plug" is exposed and sticks up when not in use. No cover for it and it can get dusty.
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on March 28, 2014
When I got this unit I was thrilled, it is such a huge improvement over the original iHome Clock radio with dock I had. Then my week of being on call hit when I need to be reachable 24/7. I woke up one morning to see FIVE MISSED CALLS!!! The phone DOES NOT RING WHEN IT IS DOCKED!!! This makes this unit completely USELESS one week a month for me. Looks like I now just have a fancy clock radio that I can occasionally use as a dock for my iPhone :-(
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon July 9, 2015
This thing works great with a little tweaking.

When I first set it up, I realized my iphone wont fit perfectly with a case on, even though my case has an open bottom. The reason I found was the rubber bumpers on the sides of the lightning port. While I'm sure these sounded real good to the design team at Apple, they serve no purpose other than making charging difficult with a case on.
With all that being said, here was my solution: the rubber grips can be pulled off, and then apply some adhesive remover (I use WD-40) to get rid of the gummy residue left over and it looks just as good, but is more practical and efficient.

Otherwise, I've had no issues with this device. It works day in and day out just as it should. The alarm starts gradual and gets louder just as I like, and it has excellent sound quality and dB levels. Two months later and I'm still pleased with my purchase.

UPDATE: Doesn't work with iphone 6/6S cases, even with the above adjustments
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