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  • What is the Sharp DreamCaster?

  • How we tested the Sharp DreamCaster

  • What we like about the Sharp DreamCaster

  • Related content

  • What we don’t like about the Sharp DreamCaster

  • What are current owners saying about the Sharp DreamCaster?

  • Is the Sharp DreamCaster worth it?

Pros

  • Easy to use

  • Good selection of volumes

  • White noise feature

Cons

  • Only one alarm tone

What is the Sharp DreamCaster?

Sharp is one of those household names. It makes all sorts of electronics, from dishwashers and beyond.

The Sharp DreamCaster is a multipurpose alarm clock. It can be used as a sound and white noise machine as well as a wake-up call. It has a few more bells and whistles that make it stand out compared to other Sharp alarms.

How we tested the Sharp DreamCaster

The Sharp DreamCaster knob show from above
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Sharp DreamCaster isn't just an alarm—the device also has multiple white noise options.

At Reviewed, we like to test things in a manner that’s practical and scientific. As such, the Sharp DreamCaster went through two bouts of testing: one in our lab, and another on my nightstand. (As the senior sleep writer here, many of the sleep-related products we test have stints in my apartment.)

In the lab, we tested the ranges of the alarm’s brightness and volume settings, measuring both at their highest and lowest levels. At home, we tested the alarms for their ease of use, and to see how well the features held up in person, rather than being assessed for how well they woke me up, as that’s pretty subjective.

What we like about the Sharp DreamCaster

Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Sharp DreamCaster was easy to use and intuitive.

It’s multipurpose

The Sharp DreamCaster can be used as more than an alarm clock. The device can also serve as a sound machine that helps dampen other noises that could prove disruptive to your sleep. The clock has a small, but substantial, lineup of six soundtracks: white noise, pink noise, and brown noise, and three natural sounds, including rain noises.

The clock also has a bluetooth speaker function—though we didn’t test it when we tried the alarm.

It has a good range of volumes

The Sharp DreamCaster has a solid range of alarm volumes. Its lowest level, which measured 44 decibels in our testing, is comparable to a bird call, library, or the “lowest levels of urban sound,” according to Purdue.

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At the highest volume, which measured 84 decibels, it’s similar to a garbage disposal or blender per Purdue. The alarm’s range was a whopping 40 decibels, putting it in third place in our ranking of volume options. With such a large spectrum, we think that anyone will be able to find something that will jive with their preferences.

It’s easy to use

In addition to being packed with features, the Sharp DreamCaster is simply easy to use. I didn’t struggle with turning on or off alarms, or have difficulty setting the time. Instead of using buttons to change the time, you simply twist the dial atop the alarm.

Setting alarms on the device also wasn’t a headache. With the press of a couple buttons and a twist of the dial, I was quickly done. Even adjusting the brightness was easy—you just twist the top dial when not setting an alarm or the clock to manipulate the display.

What we don’t like about the Sharp DreamCaster

The Sharp DreamCaster knob show from above
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

The Sharp DreamCaster only has a couple downsides—like its display's brightness and overall appearance.

The lowest volume isn’t ultra-low

Even at its lowest setting, the alarm is still fairly loud. We didn’t think this was a dealbreaker by any means. But if you’re particularly sensitive to sound, the lowest volume could be a bit loud. We don’t think so, especially as the alarm relies on a beeping tone to wake you.

It might be too bright for some

I didn’t run into a problem with the display’s brightness, though a number of Amazon reviewers dinged the device on this front. The DreamCaster’s display was brighter, even at its lowest setting, than many of the other alarms we tested. The alarm measured one lux, at its lowest setting—whereas every other alarm we measured came in at zero. If you’re particularly sensitive to light, something like the Loftie might serve you better. The Loftie, in contrast, was dimmable to the point of being totally dark.

Its appearance leaves a little something to be desired

Complaints about aesthetics are always secondary, in my mind. After all, the way something looks has absolutely no bearing on its functionality. The knob that makes the device ultra-easy to use is also what makes it a bit of an, er, ugly duckling.

The clock’s shape also means it doesn’t have the slimmest profile on your nightstand—taking up more horizontal space than vertical domain. I found it small enough to be unobtrusive, but a handful of Amazon reviewers highlighted this as an issue.

What are current owners saying about the Sharp DreamCaster?

By sheer number of reviews, the Sharp DreamCaster isn’t Sharp’s most popular alarm on Amazon. However, the majority like it. It has just shy of 500 reviews to date, and 4.3 stars.

A number of reviewers cite the same upshots as I did, including its ease of use. “The controls are very easy to use and it's super easy to read,” one writes. “The noise functions work well, the dimmer and adjustable volume level are great, battery backup is fine, and the bluetooth speaker sounds markedly better than I was expecting. I also really like the jog dial for setting the times instead of pushing buttons to cycle the hours and minutes—way faster.”

The most common complaint? The display was too bright, even at the dimmest setting. I didn’t find it irksome, though I did push it all the way to the lowest setting when I used the alarm, and in our lab testing, it was among the brightest options.

Is the Sharp DreamCaster worth it?

the sharp dreamcaster display on a nightstand
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

For most, the Sharp DreamCaster will pack a punch with loads of features and a reasonable price.

The Sharp DreamCaster has an affordable price with oodles of features. Whether you’re looking for something to kick your phone habit to the curb, or if you’re hoping to find something with more versatility than a regular alarm, it may fill the bill. It’s a relatively compact device with just a few minor flaws. We loved the ease of using the alarm, and think that between that, its features, and the array of options when it comes to volume, most will find it’s a great option.

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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

Meet the tester

Lindsey Vickers

Lindsey Vickers

Senior Staff Writer, Sleep

@lindseyvix

Lindsey writes about sleep, lifestyle, and more for Reviewed. In her waking hours, she likes to spend time outside, read, cook, and bake. She holds a master’s in journalism from Boston University and bachelors' degrees in English Literature and Anthropology from the University of Utah.

See all of Lindsey Vickers's reviews

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