6 Best Sunrise Alarm Clocks (2024): Budget, Smart Apps, and Sleep Sounds

6 Best Sunrise Alarm Clocks (2024): Budget, Smart Apps, and Sleep Sounds

Lumie Bodyclock Active 250 for $140: Looks aren’t everything, but it’s hard to ignore that this Lumie looks and feels like something designed more than a decade ago because it was designed more than a decade ago. Operating it is a pain. Even with the manual in front of me, working the various controls was a headache. Yet it fills up a dark room better than the more directional lamps, although the large vents on the back of the lens cast a peacock pattern of light on the walls. It does a good job of diffusing the light, and it has the usual list of features—a loud alarm, a dimmable clock, a snooze button, and buttons to adjust brightness and the duration of sunsets and sunrises. The Lumie isn’t bad, just expensive for what you get in a market full of newer designs.

Hatch Restore 2 for $200: The Restore 2 is one of the most handsome sunrise alarms I’ve come across. With its its solid build and fabric-covered front, through which glows the modern, digital clock numbers and main sunrise bulb, it certainly looks and feels like the premium product it is. It’s also available in three earth-tone colors to blend in (or stand out) from your home design, including green-gray Slate, khaki Putty, and muted-bronze Latte. Compared to the original Restore, its aesthetic is more upmarket.

At first, I was taken aback by the fact that its light bulb is directional, rather than domed. It had sufficient light but didn’t light up my whole bedroom much. Yet in practice, with it on the nightstand 2 feet from my face, it had enough light to rouse me in the mornings and lull me asleep at night. You can customize your wake-up and bedtime routines by choosing from various light settings of different intensity and color temperature, too. One of the Restore 2’s strengths is how its smart app works with its sound machine features. Virtually all of the relaxing nature sounds and white noise sounded realistic, high-quality, and soothing. The crackling campfire and falling rain were my favorites, although sea breezes, birds singing, and wind chimes were particularly pleasant, too.

One thing that sticks out is the Hatch+ Membership, for $5 per month or $50 per year. All the important stuff, such as the crucial sunrises, sunsets, and library of sleep sounds, is available without the membership, but Hatch+ adds channels of curated music, sound routines, guided rest exercises, and “sleep stories,” which are relaxing stories. In my opinion, it’s not necessary to pay for the membership. The Restore 2 includes plenty of functionality without it. The channels are interesting to have but not at all crucial, and I’d rather keep my $5 per month. The star content of the Restore 2—the sunrise/sunset features and sound library—are included for free anyway.

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