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The picture may not be top-notch, but the price is quite appealing for a 42-inch TV

As a basic flat-panel TV, with none of the trimmings of more expensive models, we're pleased to report that the SJ42DMBB is on the whole easy to use. Having side-mounted AV inputs, especially HDMI, is a real boon for games consoles and camcorders.

The menu system is sensibly-compartmentalised, with sections for picture, sound, features and parental control (channel/AV input blocks and age-ratings for digital channels). It disappears after an annoyingly short timeout period, though.

The voluminous manual, which admittedly has to cover no fewer than 19 languages, doesn't tell you how to set favourite channels so that they can be quickly recalled at the touch (or two) of a button. We couldn't figure out for ourselves how to define channels as favourites, and so our list was resolutely empty.


More sensibly implemented handset-driven features include a channel list, the basic but workable EPG with programme-type filtering, and the ability to return instantly to the last-viewed channel.

A simple onscreen list, the mere touch of a button away, switches between the AV inputs and TV tuner. The sleep timer will send the set into standby after a preset period, but the handset button to do this could be positioned more intuitively.

One of the criticisms our of review sample is that digital TV subtitles come on by default. This can be somewhat annoying, certainly if your hearing is up to scratch. However, they can be turned off in the sensibly designed menu system - and turned on when required with the handset button that Hannspree has provided for this very purpose.

What's more, we've been assured by Hannspree that this irregularity will be fixed on versions that go on sale.