Editors' Choice May 2009 winners
CNET UK Editors' Choice awards are given to the very best gadgets we test each month, and manufacturers would sell their first-born to get one. Here's the pick of May's charming bunch
Hello children everywhere, and welcome once again to the cream of the kit we have reviewed. CNET UK Editors' Choice awards are given to the very best gadgets we test each month, and manufacturers would sell their first-born to get one. Honestly. So without further ado, here are the winners for May 2009.
The T-Mobile G1 introduced us to Android, but the HTC Magic has made it crave-worthy. The Magic ditches the keypad in favour of an all-touchscreen device, packed into a glossy white body. Android is an appealing concept, but it needed the lust-factor of a great-looking phone before we could really love it, and the Magic has put its spell on us. The user interface is still not as slick as the iPhone, but the Magic is more flexible thanks to its open-source operating system, features such as stereo Bluetooth and video recording, and access to the app store.
The Asus W90 is as impressive as it is immense -- and it's pretty damn huge. This gaming behemoth tips the scales at a whopping 5.2kg, making it slightly dangerous to those who're a touch on the frail side. Don't make the mistake of thinking it's an unsavoury brute, though. Its use of brushed metal and glossy plastics means it's by far the most attractive gaming laptop we've reviewed. It's also the fastest. Twin ATI Mobility Radeon HD4870 graphics processing units help it achieve the highest 3D test scores we've ever encountered -- so if gaming is your bag, you'll want it near the top of your list.
We've tested more than you've had hot dinners, so when we tell you the 1008HA Seashell is the dog's hind legs, you should probably take our word for it. The Seashell is one of the most attractive, lightest and thinnest netbooks on the market, but sacrifices very little in terms of usability. Its keyboard, for example, is large, comfortable and offers great feedback for high-speed typing. Its battery is a solid performer, too, lasting just over 3 hours while performing even high-intensity tasks. Those who want a super-stylish, super-thin netbook need look no further than the 1008HA Seashell.
When it comes to recording , your options are a little limited. Well, they were, before Panasonic introduced its DMR-BS750, which not only offers a twin-tuner freesat PVR with 350GB hard drive, but also has a Blu-ray recorder for archiving your favourite recordings in HD. Panasonic has designed a brilliantly thought-out product with every single feature you'd expect. Panasonic has also managed to cram it all into a simple and understated case. All of this comes at a price, however, but if you've got the money to spend, we're very happy to give this machine our glowing endorsement.
It's not often that a 32-inch TV arrives on the scene and impresses us. At this end of the market, TVs are generally designed for people who want a flat TV but don't want to spend their life thinking about which one. The 32RV635DB managed to land on our doorstep and give us a surprise thrill. Picture quality was certainly detailed when we fired up Blu-ray movies, Freeview looked terrific too, and the new menu and remote control make the whole system a doddle to use. It may not be the most exciting area for TVs at the moment, but the RV645 managed to put big grins on our faces.
Loads of HDMI sockets, a gallon of power and a beautiful sound all make the TX-SR607 an AV receiver worth every penny. For £500 you get access to the new Dolby Pro Logic IIz surround sound, which adds an extra dimension to movie soundtracks with a new 'high' speaker configuration designed to engulf you in sound. Dozens of surround-sound modes mean you get the best quality sound possible, whether you're watch a movie, listening to music or splattering your friends in a Xbox Live killing spree. Plentiful inputs, simple setup and oodles of power really sold us on the SR607. It's a lovely machine to use and should satisfy people who appreciate that sound is 50 per cent of the movie experience.