I’d been looking for a good iPod alarm clock / speaker combo for awhile. Unfortunately, I hated most of the ones you’d see in Wal-mart or Target. I knew I wanted something with good sound and a functional, attractive design. Multiple alarms and a nice remote were also an important consideration. In the $150 XtremeMac Luna Alarm Clock Audio System I found all of these features and more. In short, the Luna is a beautifully designed alarm clock that sounds great when playing music from an iPod.
Update – Jan 2008
In a word, sleek. The Luna features four chrome controls on the top of the player. In a word, sleekThe bottom and top surfaces of the Luna are white plastic, with a black-metal grill covering the body. The fron has a 2.5 x 1.25 inch backlit screen that displays the time/date and menus. The screen can also be inverted if you prefer a black on white scheme. The back of the Luna (see below) has connectors for the included AM and FM radio antennas, an auxillary input in case you want use an MP3 player other than the iPod (such as the Zune – cringe), and of course power input.
Overall, I really like the design and its simplistic yet functional nature.
The Luna is completely controlled via the four chrome controls on its top. The rear two knobs are simple buttons, whereas the front two can also be rotated like knobs. The knobs have three functions, hold down to access menus, turn to highlight, and press again to select the menu item. This system creates an fairly straightforward control scheme although at times it’s not completely intuitive. The various controls and their functions are:
- Rear (left): Pressing turns Alarm #1 on/off, holding down accesses the menu for Alarm #1.
- Rear (right): Pressing turns Alarm #2 on/off, holding down accesses the menu for Alarm #2.
- Front (left): Pressing selects audio source or turns power on/off, holding down accesses the radio menu, and turning adjusts system volume.
- Front (right): Pressing activates the main menu and selects items from the menu, turning scrolls through menus, and holding down exits the menu.
Overall, the aesthetic benefits outweigh any limitations in control.
You can also control most of the Luna’s features via its remote, which is thin yet sturdy. thin yet study remoteThe 5-inch long remote feels hefty in your hand and has an attractive white finish. The remote features 18 buttons with Power, Source, Shuffle, and Reset (treble/bass) along the top followed by the standard playback controls such as Play/Pause, Back, Forward, and Volume (up/down). Other buttons include Bass (up/down), Treble (up/down), Previous Playlist/Preset, Next Playlist/Preset, Alarm 1 (on/off), Alarm 2(on/off), and Snooze/Sleep. The remote use infrared (IR) technology, which means it will need line-of-sight access to the Luna, although I’ve had no trouble using the remote even from long distances. Overall, the remote is a real asset to the Luna and the ability to snooze via remote is real plus (especially for non-morning people).
The Luna’s AM/FM radio is its weakest feature, for two reasons. The first is that the system’s tuning mechanism is somewhat confusing. When you first turn on the radio, the station frequency is displayed, blinking, at the top of the screen; you can turn the front-right control to change stations so long as the display is blinking. However, after the blinking stops, to change the station you are required to go into the radio menu.the radio is just OK Secondly, the radio’s reception isn’t very good even once you’ve tuned in your desired station. However, with a well placed antenna (included) the radio’s reception becomes much better. Overall, the radio is just OK and if radio is important to you I would not recommend buying the Luna.