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Hitachi P42T01: Plasma TV with electronic swivellyness

We marvel at the technological enhancements that are happening in the world of televisions, including a motorised stand that comes with the new Hitachi T-series TVs. Mmm, swivelly

It's not often we get to make up a word, but our friends over at CNET.com have introduced the term 'colour-changey', so we feel it's fair we can add our own word to the vernacular. If you use 'swivellyness' often enough, dear readers, this time next year it will make it into the Oxford English Dictionary. Hey, it worked for bouncebackability.

Although it may not sound like a hugely important feature, we're in love with the motorised stand that comes with the T series. At the press of a button, you can rotate the television to point towards you. This is pure genius, because getting up to move a TV slightly, then going back to the sofa only to discover you need to move it again is really annoying. Okay, it's not Big Brother annoying, but it's certainly capable of making us ratty.

The 42T01 has a slightly crazy screen resolution of 1,024x1,080 pixels, which is more of a square than a rectangle, but this is purely because of the rectangular shape of pixels the screen uses. It does mean that hooking the screen up to a computer will yield some problems, but plasmas aren't best suited to computer inputs anyway, unless you like residual images of the Windows task bar.

We think the styling is pretty snazzy too -- there's a hidden control panel at the front under what looks like a speaker grille. Here you can adjust pretty much all the important TV features, as well as plug in a digital camera or pop in an SD memory card.

The Hitachi has a pair of HDMI inputs. Unusually, one of them is at the front, which leaves just one rear port. This is a shame, because we love the idea of a front-mounted HDMI, but we would just rather it was in addition to a pair at the rear. Still, this will suit people who want to plug in their PS3 for a bit without messing around at the rear of the TV. -Ian Morris