You know how at school there's always that one slightly strange kid who doesn't dress like anyone else and likes to do everything in his own unique way? Well, that kid has taken TV form in the extremely unusual shape of Humax's LGB-22DYT.
As its name suggests, this is a 22in TV - itself a change of pace from the giants we tend to find dominating our test benches. But it's also unlike any other small-screen LCD TV we've ever seen, for two reasons.
First of all, whereas most little tellies are happy to sit on a small, flimsy desktop stand, the 22DYT erupts from something that looks for all the world like a fairly substantial ‘sound bar' speaker. Which is a pretty fitting description, as it happens, for that's pretty much what it is!
Yes, Humax has recognised that trying to fit speakers into a small LCD TV's bodywork in any ‘normal' way pretty much leads to sound quality that's the crap side of rubbish. So the brand has taken the radical step of removing those speakers from the TV and incorporating them into the stand.
I have to say, though, that I'm not sure this idea works aesthetically. For while a similar idea on the 40in Humax LP40-TDR1 TV we tested recently looked OK, on a TV as small as this the speaker bar somehow looks too dominant, taking your eye away from the picture you're supposed to be watching. It also looks a bit clumsy and dated, as if it's escaped from some 1980s conceptual design exhibition.
Still, the LGB-22DYT is almost certainly going to find use as a second or third TV, not a main one. So it won't have to go on show in your main living room where it might embarrass you when anyone pops round to visit.
Plus, of course, there's always the possibility that your reward for taking onboard such an ‘unconventional' design will be audio quality the likes of which has never before been heard from a small TV.
Anyway, going back to our initial discussion about just why the 22DYT stands out from the crowd, as well as its ‘speaker bar stand', it's also got an atypical native resolution of 1,680 x 1,050. This is clearly enough to let the TV earn its HD Ready wings, but not quite enough to make it a full HD set. Odd.
To be honest, I suspect the reason for the ‘inbetween' resolution is the fact that the screen at the system's heart was probably originally developed for PC rather than video use. Here's hoping neither the resolution nor the suspected PC origins will lead to any problems with the TV's picture quality.