written by: Tolga BALCI•edited by: Heather Marie Kosur•updated: 6/22/2010
You might expect for all full HD LCD TVs to measure larger than 32". Hannspree breaks this trend with its 28" HT09 TV. This article explores how this little LCD television measures up against larger sets as well as in terms of price to performance.
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The flat television sets that support 1080p full HD resolution usually come sizes of 32" or larger. If you wanted to have a TV that both supports full HD and measures under 32", you once had to consider a PC monitor/TV hybrid. Hansspree seems to change this with its HT09 television.
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The Hannspree HT09 has dimensions of 67.3 cm (26.5" width) x 51.6 cm (20.3" height) x 19 cm (7.5" depth) with the base, measures 67.3 cm (26.5" width) x 49 cm (19.3" height) x 8.9 cm (3.5" depth) without the base, and weighs 8.9 kg (19.6 lbs). The screen is a 27.5" Widescreen Active Matrix TFT LCD capable of displaying 16.7 million colors with 500 cd/m2 brightness. The viewing angle is 160° to all dimensions. The contrast ratio is 3000:1, and the response time is 3ms.
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The build quality of the Hannspree HT09 is good and features an overall black and silver look. The display is piano black, and the speakers are silver, making the television look far from cheap. But, the Hannspree HT09 does not look like very high-end either, like their expensive, big brand cousins. In any case, you would not be ashamed to display the HT09 near your monitor, gaming console, or in your living room. I can safely say that it is a decent set.
As far as the remote is concerned, it is no less than for a TV set. The rubber keys are big, comfortable, and organized consistently. It uses two AA batteries, fits the hand nicely, and feels solid. The remote is way better than what you would expect from this under $400 TV.
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Hannspree placed all the connections on the back of the TV. There are two HDMI, one D-Sub (VGA), one YPbPr, one headset (3.5 mm), one PC line in, two SCART, and two antenna connections. There are no digital audio inputs or outputs. You may argue that nowadays TVs come with more connections, especially HDMI connections, but don't forget the price tag. There is no composite connection (possibly the lowest-quality connection), but, if you insist on that, you can go for a SCART adapter. Personally, I found the connections enough and well-chosen.
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This is the point where all hell breaks loose. Let's start with the good things: the channel tuning is easy to navigate, the on screen instructions are big, and navigation is intuitive and easy. The audio and video presets are available, but I recommend going for the custom settings and setting them to your pleasure. The aspect ratio presets are limited to Auto, Full, and Normal. When connecting a PC with the 1920x1080 resolution, the desktop went out of the limits and left some parts unviewable. The situation does not change when you switch to a dedicated audio/video source such as a satellite box delivering full HD over HDMI: the screen went out of the physical limits in the Auto mode. You can rectify the situation by changing the input to Full.
The colors and the brightness are what you would expect from a budget TV, maybe less. To get the best image quality, you have to sit right in front of the TV's center. The advertised horizontal viewing angle of 160° does not deliver the expected result. You can consider the horizontal viewing angle to be less than 90°. The sharpness of the display does not meet the expectations either. Although the blacks are pronounced, there is a significant banding and tearing on the screen, which makes the HT09 almost impossible to use as a computer monitor, since reading text on the screen is very tiring. Tearing is not frequent but you can notice banding with the color grade blocks.
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We cannot say that the speakers on the HT09 are unusable. They present sound loud enough to fill a small room. The quality is nice for both depth and detail for sound that is treble-focused. But, when you increase the volume, the background noise is clearly heard. In terms of intensive bass, the speakers produce a tinny sound. These are the places where the HT09's speakers fail.
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Price to Performance
The Hannspree HT09 comes with a price tag of $350 from Amazon.com. The warranty is a one-year limited warranty from the manufacturer. Even for our criticisms, the price to performance is average.
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The Hannspree HT09 television set is definitely fit for small rooms and for the users who watch the better digital channels and do not care much about the sound and image quality. It may be a good companion for your bedroom or your living room where you will plug in your game console. I do not recommend this television as your primary LCD TV but rather as a secondary set.