A Cheap Haier TV For Your Kitchen
A little while back we had a bit of a disaster, my daughters old 21 inch 4:3 TV finally packed in after 5 years of faultless service. She loved that TV, in fact she loves any TV (as I’m sure anybody with an 11 year old daughter will tell you the same). The trouble was that she was without a TV, my problem was that I didn’t have a lot of money to spend.
It only took a couple of days to arrive and when it did turn up, just like everything else I’ve ever ordered with Play it was extremely well packaged. Inside the box as well things looked good, for what I considered to be a no name brand everything was kept firmly in place with plenty of packaging, the screen was protected. In fact if you didn’t know any better you’d think it was a big brand name. After the usual battle of getting everything out of the snug fitting box it was time to setup.
Setting up the Haier literally only took 2 minutes. Power in, scart in, ariel in and a SVGA cable for the laptop (there are plenty of slots available, I didn’t need to take advantage of the composite, or HDMI). Everything plugged in and ready to go I hit the power button on the top and…nothing. Damn. I tried again several times but nothing. Just as I was thinking of packaging it back up I came across what looked like a proper switch on the top right of the TV. Flicking this caused everything to come to life, with the top control buttons now having some affect! I decided not to tell the wife about my troubles in turning it on. As expected nowadays once you’re powered up all tuning is done automatically by pressing a couple of buttons.
The first thing I noticed was the picture quality, I know that a smaller screen can sometimes help but the picture looked no different than that of my £1500 37″ LCD, it was very crisp, fast and to say I was impressed would be a huge understatement. In fact it was hard to believe that I was getting this sort of picture from an LCD TV that cost less than £200. I couldn’t find anything to fault with the picture. I then tried it as a monitor and the same could be said about that, faultless. In fact I only found 2 things to fault about the whole package, for a start the remote just feels a bit cheap. I suppose that’s because it is cheap but I wouldn’t like to try dropping it to see if it holds up. The only other problem was with the sound, it just felt like it was lacking something. I noticed that I had it on 50% before it was what I’d call loud enough. In the end though these are very minor gripes on a HD TV that costs less that £200.
I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this TV to anybody looking for a small future proof (HD, HDMI) LCD for their kids bedrooms. It would be a bargain at £300 (trust me it’s better than my £400 Samsung). They’ve obviously spent the money on the things that matter, good build quality with a superb picture. If Play.com are stupid enough to give these away at £179.99 then I’d jump on it if I was you.