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Product Review: Coralife Digital Thermometer

Discussion in 'Product Reviews' started by H2Ogal, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. H2Ogal

    H2Ogal Betta Be Good to Me

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    Company: Coralife (Oceanic Systems)

    Model: Only one that I know of.

    Product description: Not found on the company site. Here’s what Foster & Smith has to say: http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.com/product/prod_display.cfm?pcatid=12089

    Price range: $8-12

    Pros:
    — Compared the unit to readings on two different hanging glass thermometers, and it appears to be accurate.
    — The fairly large LCD display is much easier to read than the hanging thermometers or stick-on strips, and more precise, displaying temps to the 10th of a degree.
    — The LCD can be set for Fahrenheit or Celsius using a tiny slide selector on the front of the display unit.
    — The cord from the probe to the display unit is over three feet long, allowing the display to be placed on the front of the tank where it’s easy to see or on the side so it’s out of view.
    — The suction cup for the display is strong enough to position once and forget. A slot in the back of the display slides down snugly onto the knob on the suction cup so it doesn’t fall off, but it can be pulled off fairly easily. I keep the display on the back upper corner of the tank and just pop it off the suction cup to check it every so often.
    — The unit comes with a replaceable watch battery.
    — There is a PWR button to help save battery power, but mine quit working at some point. (I'd always left it on. Just checked the button for this review and found it dead. Luckily, the unit is stuck on, not off!)

    Cons:
    — The LCD is not backlit and can be difficult or impossible to read in low light.
    — The suction cup for the display unit is clear and shows up as a bright circle on the glass when viewed through the aquarium. I ended up placing mine exactly behind the suction cup for the probe, which is inside the aquarium of course, to help hide it.
    — The probe and cord are black, but the suction cup for the probe is white, making it highly visible anywhere in the tank. It’s also made of a strange inflexible plastic and is virtually flat. I had to apply a lot of pressure to get it to stick to the glass; it won’t stick at all if any part of it is pressed to the silicone seal at a seam or if the water level drops below the cup. I had to place the probe at the bottom of the tank to keep it from falling down during every water change. Finally, the suction cup holds the cord rather than the probe itself, so the probe just sticks out whichever direction it wants instead of sitting parallel to the glass.
    — PWR button fails easily.

    Star rating (1-5 with 5 being the best):
    3-1/2 Stars

    How long have you used the product?
    3 months

    Build quality and value for your money:
    Good but not great. Does what it's supposed to, but the failed PWR button and poor suction cup design make me question how long the unit will last.

    Other comments:
    Recommended for those wanting an inexpensive digital thermometer. More precise than glass thermometers and stick-on strips. With careful placement, can tucked out of sight.
     

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