Oregon Scientific Easy Weather Station Advanced

During the long winter months, the wise should be willing to go that little bit further in pursuit of knowing what the day is about to throw at them, so any device that can deliver accurate metrological reports at exactly the same time as it wakes you up is automatically of interest.

Oregon Scientific, the Portland based weather technology experts do a nifty line in affordable table-top 'easy' weather stations, with the advanced model allowing multiple 'remote' sensors to communicate with the central base station, relaying numerous sets of results. The main display unit tells you the temperature, in either Fahrenheit or Celsius, where it is as well as a pictographic forecast for the next 12 to 24 hours.

Arrow keys allow you to select readings up to three external sensors (THGR122NX's of which you get one in the box). These can glean temperature and humidify outside by sitting on window sills, or mounted on walls, inside. The set-up guide informs you that the sensors will function up to 30 meters from the base station but for best reception it's wise to minimize the number of line-of-sight obstructions, although, unless you live in open-plan 'habisphere', with a gulf-steam microclimate this request does seem a tall-order for the average semi. The guidebook also suggests that the sensor should point towards the base-station, when tested though, during the recent polar spell, it was discovered the readings are more accurate if the front of the sensors faces the environment in which it's trying to gauge the temperature.

The clock's time is radio-controlled and both time and date are kept accurate by super-clocks in Rugby, in the UK, and Frankfurt in Germany. Oregon have even included an alarm feature and while being very easy to set, the snooze button could be larger to give you that extra 10 minutes in bed after you discover how cold you bedroom is. One other grumble is that there is no backlight to the display, so if you're suddenly possessed with the desperate urge to know the air temperature in the dead of night you either have to blind yourself with the bedside light or wait patiently until morning.

Verdict

The Easy Weather Station Advanced is a fun alternative to the standard rather mundane radio alarm clock, and with the multiple remote sensor inputs you get a good overview of what happening in the outside world from the snug comfort of your bed or living room. The sensors accuracy if not fantastic, although end results depend greatly on sensor location and set-up, so experimentation will yield better readings.


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