15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Great For Home Theater Recliners - With One Small Setback...,
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This review is from: LED Cup Holder - Battery Operated - Blue (Misc.)
THE LONG, SHORT OF IT: They work great in Berkline Home Theater Recliners as a replacement for the pre-installed plastic cup holders. Read further for a more detailed description.
THE REASON: About a year ago I bought 2 rows of Berkline recliners for my home theater. One of the chair options was light up cup holders which I opted out of since they were a hefty $75 per chair and I didn't see the need for them. Especially since it would have added $450 to my total chair order. Now, a year later, I have found myself getting slightly frustrated trying to put a drink back into the black cup holder with the lights mostly down. So I took a look on Amazon and stumbled across these. With no reviews and being listed as "Boat" cup holders, I was hesitant. Luckily, they list the measurements so I was able to determine that these would in fact fit in my existing chairs. So I placed an order for 2 (to test).
THE INSTALLATION: Upon receipt I immediately went into my theater and started going to work on removing one of the existing cup holders. After much pulling (which is what I read to do online), I flipped the chair over to discover that there was tape wrapped around the base of the cup holder. I could have pulled till the sun came up with nothing to show for my efforts. I cut the tape and then was able to easily push it out from the bottom. I then flipped the chair back, grabbed the stainless steal base for the new cup holder and placed it on top of the hole and started to push. I only got about an inch down when the thing would simply not move any further. I pull it out, make sure it's the correct size, and try again. Same thing. What I finally ended up having to do was get a small piece of 2x4, lay it on top of the cup holder, and put all my weight on it, shifting accordingly. That ultimately worked.
THE BAD: Now, ironically, comes the part where I get a little frustrated. I install the AAA batteries and go to turn on the light up insert. I hold up the insert and look for the on/off switch, I rotate, continue to rotate, and then finally my eyes spot this super tiny black switch, literally no bigger than the tip of a dull pencil. I try to flip it and my finger just runs right over it. The switch barely protrudes if at all. I actually had to dig my finger nail in to get it on. This is the biggest downfall to these cup holders. They really could have put a larger switch, making it possible to blindly turn it on and off. But without modification, you have to hold the thing up and pry into the switch to turn it on or off. Kind of annoying if you already have a drink in it. How difficult would it really have been to put a larger switch in? I think they were going for sleek design rather than practical. It's this design flaw that I have knocked 1 star off for. You really should not have to crack a finger nail simply to turn something on or off.
THE LESSER BAD: One more minor complaint that home theater owners should consider is that these are rather directionally bright. Enough that at 12' away from the screen they cast an uneven glow on the bottom half of my screen. Very minor though and when a movie is being displayed it's basically unnoticeable. Probably an issue with any kind of lit cup holders, but I figured I would throw that our there so you know beforehand. Our chairs also have the built in TV trays and I found that when I popped those on they block most (but not all) of the light being cast forward. This issue did not effect my rating at all as it really would be an issue with introducing any form of light in a darkened room. Plus, these are advertised as for boats, in which this would not be an issue.
THE WRAP: With that one decent sized problem and one very minor complaint aside, these cup holders are a very sexy addition to my theater. The stainless steal base alone is much better looking than the plastic black cup holders that came with the chairs. Drop in the blue light inserts and you have a really stylish looking setup, even if you leave the light off. There's even padding at the bottom which reduces drop down noise. If you are okay with the two, combined minor issues, then I would definitely recommend these to anyone looking to not only make their theater look sexier, but to anyone looking to avoid spilling drinks on their nice chairs because they missed the cup holder. And at less than half the cost of having something similar pre-installed, I'd say these are a good deal. I intend on purchasing the remaining 4 to fill all the seats.
THE PROMISE: If I am able to find some solution to make the on/off switch easier to use I will update this post with what I did. Aptly titled, THE UPDATE...