A-Z Guide

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Haier

Dishwasher reviews  

We take the guesswork out of buying the best dishwasher in your price range.

7 Apr 2014 | More than 50 dishwashers rated on their washing and drying performance, energy and water use, including models from Bosch, Dishlex, LG, Miele and Westinghouse.

Fridge reviews  

We put refrigerators of all shapes and sizes through their paces in our laboratories.

4 Apr 2014 | Latest performance results for all major fridge brands, including Westinghouse, Fisher and Paykel, Electrolux, LG and Samsung, are in.

Clothes dryer reviews

We put over 30 clothes dryers to the test, including vented, condenser and electric heat pump condenser models, and one gas dryer.

27 Feb 2014 | We put the latest clothes dryers through rigorous tests in our labs. Find out which are the best performers.

Washing machine reviews  

We’ve tested more than 60 washing machines, including models from Bosch, Electrolux, Fisher & Paykel, LG, Miele, Samsung, Simpson and Westinghouse.

17 Feb 2014 | Find out which washers from all the major brands rate best for dirt removal, rinse performance and water and energy efficiency.

hair

How safe is laser and IPL hair removal?

We expose a number of untrained operators aiming lasers at your body.

20 May 2013 | A lack of regulation has led to a rise in untrained laser and IPL operators.

Quality vs price

When it comes to certain high-end products, are you paying a premium for quality or just brand?

27 Nov 2012 | We pit a low-, medium- and high-end moisturiser, hair dryer and pair of men's underpants against each other in a user trial, and speak to experts about the results.

Women's razor reviews

Which women's razors shed those unwanted hairs and leave your skin silky smooth?

23 Nov 2012 | We have test results for 13 women's razors from Gillette Venus, Schick and Bic, priced from $0.70 to $16.

Men's razor reviews

Which men's razors achieve a smooth result without damaging your skin?

14 Nov 2012 | The results for this test are shared among several consumer organisations.

Hair loss treatment

Hair loss affects more than half of all men and some women. We separate the successful treatments from the snake oils.

1 Nov 2011 | Hair loss powers an industry with more than its fair share of sharks, so caveat emptor!

"Natural" hair dye

They cost up to twice as much as supermarket products, but are health store hair dyes any healthier?

29 Jul 2011 | They have a higher price tag, but is there any benefit to buying “natural” or “organic” hair dyes? CHOICE investigates the ingredients.

Shampoo user trial

One of the most expensive brands on test rated worst overall with triallists. So think twice before purchasing your 'salon style' shampoo.

14 Jul 2010 | Our 41 volunteer testers tried 11 supermarket brands, costing between $5 and $16 per bottle.

Hair dryer reviews

Do new technologies such as ceramic and ionic make a difference to the way your hair feels?

2 Jul 2010 | CHOICE conducted a user trial of 14 hair dryers to find out if a hefty price tag or new technological features make a difference.

Hair straighteners

A good hair straightener will give you smooth, sleek and dead-straight hair at home, without the expense of professional styling.

27 Nov 2007 | You can’t change the genes that make your hair straight or curly, but now you can easily wear your wavy mane straight once in a while.

Headlice treatments

Which products are most effective at dealing with this perennial childhood problem?

21 Aug 2007 | Tenacious parasites are becoming increasingly resistant to conventional insecticide treatments.

Home hair colour review and compare

Which home hair colour did trialists prefer?

2 May 2007 | 113 women trialled the 100% grey coverage, permanent hair dyes for us.

Hair removal

Wax on, wax off? What type of hair removal product is the easiest and best to use?

2 May 2007 | We sent out wax kits, wax strips, depilatories and epilators to 141 voluntarily hairy-legged trialists.

Professional hair removal

Permanent hair removal sounds appealing — but the results aren’t guaranteed.

27 Feb 2007 | Whether you choose to pluck, shave, wax or zap it, getting rid of unwanted hair can be a time-consuming and often expensive and painful process.

Shampoo review and compare

You could save hundreds of dollars a year. Our top shampoos were all from supermarkets.

29 Jun 2006 | Over 500 CHOICE Home Testers (80% women and 20% men) each tried out four different shampoos.

Hair removal

How safe is laser and IPL hair removal?

We expose a number of untrained operators aiming lasers at your body.

20 May 2013 | A lack of regulation has led to a rise in untrained laser and IPL operators.

Women's razor reviews

Which women's razors shed those unwanted hairs and leave your skin silky smooth?

23 Nov 2012 | We have test results for 13 women's razors from Gillette Venus, Schick and Bic, priced from $0.70 to $16.

Men's razor reviews

Which men's razors achieve a smooth result without damaging your skin?

14 Nov 2012 | The results for this test are shared among several consumer organisations.

Hair loss treatment

Hair loss affects more than half of all men and some women. We separate the successful treatments from the snake oils.

1 Nov 2011 | Hair loss powers an industry with more than its fair share of sharks, so caveat emptor!

Nad's Brazilian and Bikini Wax recall

Recall issued on Nad's products sold at Woolworths between July 20 and August 5

11 Aug 2011 | A batch of Nad's Brazilian and Bikini Wax has the potential to cause sparking or a fire when the jar is heated in a microwave.

Hair removal

Wax on, wax off? What type of hair removal product is the easiest and best to use?

2 May 2007 | We sent out wax kits, wax strips, depilatories and epilators to 141 voluntarily hairy-legged trialists.

Professional hair removal

Permanent hair removal sounds appealing — but the results aren’t guaranteed.

27 Feb 2007 | Whether you choose to pluck, shave, wax or zap it, getting rid of unwanted hair can be a time-consuming and often expensive and painful process.

Ham

Pea-and-ham-soup

CHOICE recipe for pea and ham soup, a perfect winter dinner

24 Jun 2010 | A thick and tasty pea and ham soup


Pea-and-ham-soup

CHOICE recipe for pea and ham soup, a perfect winter dinner

24 Jun 2010 | A thick and tasty pea and ham soup


Packaged ham reviews

No one expects pre-packaged and pre-sliced ham to be a gourmet’s delight.

9 Sep 2008 | You might be surprised at just how much added water these products can contain instead of the meat you think you’re paying for.

handheld-mixers

Hand mixer reviews

We test 26 hand mixers in the CHOICE labs, including models from Breville, KitchenAid, Sunbeam and more.

17 Apr 2014 | Fiona Mair, home economist from CHOICE's test kitchen has tested 26 hand mixers priced from $15 to $199.

Hand-sanitisers

Dishwashing liquid reviews

Check out which manual washing-up liquid comes out on top in our latest testing.

25 Dec 2013 | Manual dishwashing liquid ranges from excellent to very poor performance. To find out which ones stand the test of time better than others, check out our results.

Antibacterial products

CHOICE goes beyond the health hype of cleaners and sanitisers.

10 Nov 2011 | These cleaners are a popular choice in the battle against bacteria, but they're often no more effective than soap and water.

Hankook

Car tyres 175-65R15 review and compare  

We test 18 brands of 175/65R15 tyres, suitable for small cars such as the Honda Jazz, Toyota Yaris and Suzuki Swift.

29 Nov 2013 | Our new rolling resistance test evaluates “eco” claims made by some manufacturers.

Small SUV tyre reviews  

Performance on sealed roads is what sets these SUV tyres apart.

15 Nov 2012 | We review 225 60R17 car tyres, which are suitable for many small SUVs on the Australian market.

Hardware

Mobile World Congress 2012  

We check out some of the latest mobile and wireless technologies at the MWC in Barcelona.

2 Mar 2012 | On day four of the MWC we check out 4G technology, QR codes, and Windows' latest operating system for smartphones.

Ryobi 2400W Electric Impact Shredder recall

The motor cooling fan may disintegrate, possibly causing laceration or impact injuries to bystanders.

17 Nov 2011 | Techtronic Industries Australia Pty Ltd is recalling Ryobi 2400W Electric Impact Shredders due to a potential manufacturing defect.

Interior paint reviews

Our independent test shows several good performers, including three low-odour paints.

7 Sep 2011 | CHOICE tests 21 interior acrylic low sheen paints to find out which ones you should be putting on your walls.

NAS external hard drive reviews

We test 10 Network-Attached Storage (NAS) devices that can store your files and serve everybody on your network.

13 May 2011 | Network-Attached Storage lets you store files in one central place and access them from multiple computers at the same time.

ioSafe disaster proof external hard drive First Look  

Is this tough external hard drive tough enough to give you total peace of mind?

30 Jul 2010 | It's shock-resistant and designed to withstand real world disasters.

Net tops and mini PCs

These mini PCs and all-in-ones start from about $580 and are a good solution for basic home computing needs.

24 May 2010 | Most people can do just fine with the new wave of compact and inexpensive PCs for the desktop.

Cordless drill reviews

These cordless drills are for the serious DIY enthusiast.

17 Aug 2009 | A cordless drill is a must-have tool for the dedicated do-it-yourselfer or tradesperson. CHOICE put 10 cordless drills through a tough set of tests to find which ones are up to the job.

Harman

Surround sound AV receiver reviews

A Surround sound AV receiver is your home theatre system's command centre.

27 Nov 2013 | We test 16 surround sound AV receivers, to find out which models have the best sound quality, and are the easiest to use.

Soundbar reviews

We've tested seventeen soundbars that help improve your TV's sound.

30 Jul 2013 | All the soundbars on test deliver better sound than you’ll get from your TV, but some demand a lot more money than others for the privilege.

iPod speaker dock reviews

Some can be used as a sound system for a flat, but most will struggle if you turn them up.

1 Mar 2012 | Price is no guarantee of quality when it comes to iPod docks.

Harvey-Norman

Customer service shadow shop

Our customer service shadow shop produces mixed results for major retailers.

26 Sep 2012 | How do Australia's bricks and mortar retailers stack up when it comes to customer service? We shadow shop Australia's 10 most popular retailers.

HBF

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Insurance comparison sites  

Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

22 Aug 2013 | Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

HCF

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Insurance comparison sites  

Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

22 Aug 2013 | Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

HD

CeBIT 2012

We head to the world's largest digital and IT trade fair in Hannover.

12 Mar 2012 | We check out a couple of high-tech cars, another waterproof smartphone, and robots that perform some pretty unusual tasks.

HD set-top box reviews  

A high-definition set-top box is an inexpensive way to upgrade to digital TV.

13 Oct 2011 | We put 14 set-top boxes, priced from $80 to $150, through their paces, and find out which ones come out on top.

Widescreen monitor reviews

We test 13 widescreen monitors from 21" to 27".

21 Jun 2011 | We put 13 widescreen desktop monitors to the test, across three size categories – 21.5”, 23”-24” and 27” – to see how they compare.

EPG review and compare

Electronic program guides (EPGs) are supposed to help Australians record their weekly TV fix, but how reliable are they?

2 May 2010 | CHOICE explains why electronic program guides fall short of the mark.

External 1TB Hard Drive Reviews

One terabyte external hard drives – give your PC a welcome capacity boost for less than $200.

8 Jan 2010 | The quickest and most cost-effective way to add massive storage space to your computer system.

Sony PlayTV

This add-on device for PlayStation3 owners has its limitations.

3 Dec 2009 | The Sony PlayTV struggles to provide an effective two-in-one games console and personal video recorder machine.

HD Projectors review and compare

For a real home theatre experience, you can’t match an HD projector.

10 Aug 2009 | High-definition TV screens are all the rage these days and seem to be getting bigger by the month, but if you want a real home theatre experience even the biggest LCD and plasma screens can’t hold a candle to an HD projector.

Samsung HT-BD review

The Samsung HT-BD2 is the first of a new category: the Blu-ray home theatre system.

17 Jul 2008 | CHOICE tested it alongside several other models that were Blu-ray players only to see how it would rate as a player.

Headphones

Headphones and earphones reviews

Headphones have become a fashion accessory, but there’s a lot more to them than whether they match your threads.

10 Apr 2013 | CHOICE reviews 16 pairs of headphones, priced from $198 to $300, including models from Beats, Bose, Fanny Wang and Ultrasone.

Novelty phone handsets

We've checked out a number of novelty handsets for designed for use with a mobile phone. But how well do they work?

4 Mar 2013 | We put five retro handsets and one bluetooth glove designed for use with a mobile phone through their paces.

Noise-cancelling headphones and earphones reviews

These gadgets keep the music happening without driving your neighbours mad.

4 Apr 2012 | Test results for seven noise-cancelling headphones and six noise-cancelling earphones.

HTC Sensation XL First Look

The HTC Sensation XL is one of the largest screened phones we've seen to date.

6 Dec 2011 | Would you like a larger screen and headphones with your mobile phone?

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

Wireless headphones reviews

Cutting the cord can help keep harmony in the home.

15 Apr 2011 | Wireless headphones mean any household members can listen to TV or music at the best possible sound level.

Hearing damage

How to counter the risk of hearing loss but not miss out on entertainment.

3 Dec 2008 | Excessively loud music or video can damage your hearing.

Childsafe headphones review

Headphones designed to protect your child’s ears from excessive noise.

15 Oct 2008 | We looked at a pair of headphones designed specifically for children aged six years or above. While the lead for plugging into a suitable music player is short, it’s suitable for a child.

Noise cancelling headphones

What price should you pay and will they cut the racket?

26 May 2008 | The best performing models make you wonder how you ever coped without them.

Head phones

Headphones and earphones reviews

Headphones have become a fashion accessory, but there’s a lot more to them than whether they match your threads.

10 Apr 2013 | CHOICE reviews 16 pairs of headphones, priced from $198 to $300, including models from Beats, Bose, Fanny Wang and Ultrasone.

Novelty phone handsets

We've checked out a number of novelty handsets for designed for use with a mobile phone. But how well do they work?

4 Mar 2013 | We put five retro handsets and one bluetooth glove designed for use with a mobile phone through their paces.

Noise-cancelling headphones and earphones reviews

These gadgets keep the music happening without driving your neighbours mad.

4 Apr 2012 | Test results for seven noise-cancelling headphones and six noise-cancelling earphones.

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

Childsafe headphones review

Headphones designed to protect your child’s ears from excessive noise.

15 Oct 2008 | We looked at a pair of headphones designed specifically for children aged six years or above. While the lead for plugging into a suitable music player is short, it’s suitable for a child.

Noise cancelling headphones

What price should you pay and will they cut the racket?

26 May 2008 | The best performing models make you wonder how you ever coped without them.

Bluetooth headsets

They’re stylish and useful — but not entirely hassle-free.

4 Jul 2007 | Bluetooth headsets make it easier to walk and talk with your mobile phone. But are they comfortable?

Healing

PVR reviews   

Take control of your TV viewing. Find the right PVR to suit you needs.

10 Jan 2014 | We review eight of the latest PVRs including models with DVD/Blu-ray drives, priced between $149 and $699.

Health

First Health Star Ratings hit the shelves

Local company Monster Health Food Co rolls out new food labelling scheme

16 Apr 2014 | The move by Monster is a welcome step forward for the Health Star Rating Scheme.

NSW measured up on health

Report compares the NSW health system against the health systems of Australia and 10 other countries.

14 Apr 2014 | A new report shows NSW stacks up well in some aspects of healthcare, but affordability is an issue.

Do diet detox products work?

Can herbal pills and fruit-based liquids really remove toxins, or is it all just marketing spin?

9 Apr 2014 | We ask the experts just how well diet detox products work when it comes to removing toxins and getting healthy.

Health insurance complaints down

The gap between how much a consumer pays in hospital fees and how much their health fund covers is still causing headaches.

9 Apr 2014 | Health insurance industry complaints are down, The State of the Health Funds report finds, but some issues such as out-of-pocket costs, remain.

Why dark chocolate is good for the heart

Turns out dark chocolate is more than just a tasty treat - it's also good for heart health.

4 Apr 2014 | Chocolate lovers, it's time to rejoice because there's another reason to eat dark chocolate.

Direct-to-consumer health screening

Which health screens do more harm than good?

18 Mar 2014 | Some health-screening services promise early detection of serious disease, but may instead result in unnecessary worry or false reassurance.

Should you drop extras insurance

Private health insurance is increasingly expensive and your extras health insurance may not give you value for money

28 Feb 2014 | Extras health insurance is meant to help with smaller ongoing costs, such as a dental check-up or new glasses or contact lenses. But how much does it really help?

Organ donation

Many people support the idea of organ donation, but their wishes may go unfulfilled unless they undertake the necessary steps.

30 Dec 2013 | It's not enough to sign a register or a tick a box to signal your intent, it's important to talk to your family about your wishes.

Travel health guide

Don't let an avoidable illness ruin your long-planned holiday

18 Dec 2013 | The last thing you need to worry about on a trip is illness. Here's how to keep safe and healthy while you're travelling.

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Blood pressure monitor reviews

Do blood pressure monitors work, and could you benefit from owning one?

24 Nov 2013 | One in seven Australian adults suffer from some form of high blood pressure. If you’re one of them, monitoring your condition regularly at home with a blood pressure monitor can be useful.

Mosquito repellents review

As Australians begin their mass annual migration to the country’s lakes and beaches, CHOICE finds out which mosquito repellents actually repel mozzies

6 Nov 2013 | We test 15 mozzie repellents to determine their effectiveness and whether or not they meet their claims. The recommended products provide the best protection against mozzie bites.

Surviving hospital: infections

The last thing you need from a hospital stay is to contract a preventable infection.

23 Oct 2013 | Hospital-acquired infections can have serious consequences, including repeat surgery – or even fatalities – and cost Australia $1bn a year. CHOICE checks up on the situation.

Cockroach killers review and compare  

Cockroach killers are an effective short-term solution - but in the long term, prevention is best.

16 Oct 2013 | CHOICE tested three types of chemical control - knockdown sprays, surface sprays, and baits and traps - to find out which ones are the most effective.

What doctors would not do

What doctors would not do

10 Oct 2013 | An apple a day keeps the doctor away - but what does the doctor keep away from? CHOICE finds out what 17 health professionals advise against.

Hayfever treatment

We review your treatment options for managing hayfever symptoms.

1 Oct 2013 | There are several types of medication available over-the-counter or by prescription for the treatment of symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, congestion, itchy throat and burning eyes. Which work best?

Cheap health cover, members only

Restricted membership health insurance funds deliver top policies at lower prices – and you may be able to join one.

27 Aug 2013 | Restricted health membership funds deliver top insurance policies at lower prices – and you may be able to join one.

Cough cold and flu treatments

We look at which over-the-counter and natural remedies help combat colds and flu.

28 Jun 2013 | Learn how to prevent and effectively treat your common cold and flu symptoms.

medical-procedures-under-the-knife

The safety, efficacy and cost of some common medical procedures has been called into question

20 Jun 2013 | As governments try to rein in health costs, identifying low-value medical procedures is a priority. We explain the issues for consumers, and tell you what you can do to ensure you get the best healthcare.

New star ratings for food products

Ministers agree to star ratings for food nutrition labelling

14 Jun 2013 | A new system of star ratings will help consumers make healthier decisions in the supermarket aisle.

Contraception options

CHOICE reviews long term and short term contraception, including new generation pills, rings, implants and injections.

13 Jun 2013 | CHOICE's health experts compare contraceptive options available in Australia, including long-acting reversible methods, hormonal injections, IUD, the pill and emergency contraception.

Supermarket and bakery bread review

Modern bread processing methods have completely changed the way our daily loaf is made.

4 Jun 2013 | Bread has changed thanks to modern processing methods and additives. We investigate what's in supermarket and bakery breads and help you choose a healthy crust.

How safe is laser and IPL hair removal?

We expose a number of untrained operators aiming lasers at your body.

20 May 2013 | A lack of regulation has led to a rise in untrained laser and IPL operators.

Everyday superfoods

Which nine foods available from the supermarket could help you live a longer and better quality of life?

30 Apr 2013 | Filling up your trolley with everyday grocery items such as olive oil, wholegrains and yoghurt could help you reduce your risk of certain diseases.

Headaches and migraines

From acupuncture and herbal remedies to OTC and prescribed medicines, we reveal which headache and migraine treatments actually work.

18 Apr 2013 | If you’re concerned about overusing painkillers, there are some effective alternatives.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Stevia-sugar-substitute

Will low-kilojoule sweetener stevia revolutionise the way we flavour our food?

26 Mar 2013 | Stevia is hailed as a zero-kilojoule natural sweetener that will help reduce the amount of sugar we consume. But just how natural is it?

Advance care directives

Unless you take certain steps, advance care directives (ACDs) may not carry much weight. We share some pointers on deciding your own fate.

22 Jan 2013 | With Australians living longer and often facing a drawn-out decline, being clear about your future healthcare plans is more important than ever.

Smoothies and frappés

You might be surprised by the sugary punch packed by some of these fruit-based drinks.

14 Jan 2013 | With up to 2600kJ in one serving, the hidden sugar in some smoothies and frappés places them in the category of a junk food snack rather than a healthy drink.

Wacky water

We take a look at the science behind various "enhanced" waters on the market, including hexagonal water and sports waters.

7 Jan 2013 | The market is awash with "enhanced" waters making claims about their superior chemistry. But do they offer any advantages over normal water?

Europe-restrains-food-health-claims

New European Union regulation lists permitted health claims, bans rest

19 Dec 2012 | Regulations have come into effect in Europe that will only allow food health claims approved by the European Food Safety Authority.

Food ministers approve health claims standard

One step forward or one step back for consumers?

10 Dec 2012 | New standards for health claims a mixed blessing for consumers.

The rise of nutritional branding

Pure, natural and healthy or laden with salt, sugar and saturated fat?

20 Nov 2012 | We look at 200 products with implied health or quality claims and discover there is a fine line between healthy and hoodwinked.

Protein supplements

There's a protein supplement for just about everyone these days - but how useful are they?

12 Sep 2012 | Protein supplements (mainly in the form of drink powders and bars) are marketed for weight loss, muscle mass building and post-exercise recovery, targeting dieters, elderly people and athletes. They may be helpful sometimes, but whether they're necessary is debatable. In this article we take a balanced look at the science behind the benefits of protein vs the real requirements of the people who might be tempted to use them.

Coconut Water - fab or fad?

We find out if coconut water is all it's cracked up to be.

21 Aug 2012 | It's been hailed as 'nature's sports drink', but does coconut water live up to its health claims?

Digital baby thermometer reviews

A good thermometer is a must-have for any home with kids.

25 Jul 2012 | We review 10 digital probe thermometers that are suitable for babies and toddlers, as well as older children and adults.

Governments decide future of health claims

Food and health ministers reject proposal for independent evaluation of new claims.

23 Jul 2012 | Food and health ministers in Australia and New Zealand have rejected a proposal by FSANZ for independent evaluation of new health claims in food labelling.

Exercise experts  

We explain how you can get the right advice for your exercise needs.

23 Jul 2012 | We take a look at the main types of fitness professionals, and what to look for when choosing one.

Online health tests

Give yourself a health check with these online resources.

22 Jun 2012 | We've selected online health tests from reputable sources to help determine your current health status and future health risks.

Diabetes

Who's getting it and why?

8 May 2012 | We look at the different types of diabetes, as well as pre-diabetes, and the latest research into causes and prevention.

Mad Cow in California

A disease has been detected in a US dairy cow.

3 May 2012 | US authorities have detected BSE - mad cow disease - in a dairy cow in California. CHOICE says local cattle feeding regulations must be maintained in order to prevent a similar occurance in Australia.

Dishing up cancer

Is your diet carcinogenic?

26 Apr 2012 | Information about foods and drinks that could cause cancer is continually updated. We bring you the latest.

New poll shows bottle half full for Australia drinkers

Two thirds of Australian drinkers underestimate what a standard drink is

23 Apr 2012 | Two thirds of Australian drinkers underestimate the number of standard drinks in a bottle of wine, according to the results of a new poll.

Food claims 97 per cent fat free 100 per cent confusion

Proposed crackdown on ‘fat free’ claims must extend to all fat content claims.

3 Apr 2012 | CHOICE wants proposed rules that would restrict ‘fat free’ and ‘% fat free’ claims on food packaging to be extended to cover all claims about fat content.

Front-of-pack food labelling talks begin

Governments and stakeholders turn attention to front-of-pack labelling design.

3 Apr 2012 | CHOICE has met with key industry groups, and government officials to discuss the development of a single front-of-pack food labelling system.

Guide to online health advice

With colds and flus upon us, who can you trust for reliable information online? We give you the low-down.

14 Mar 2012 | With colds and flus upon us, who can you trust to give you reliable information online? We give you the low-down.

Hip-replacement-surgery

What you need to know before joint replacement surgery.

9 Mar 2012 | Given the recall of faulty hip replacement devices implanted in thousands of patients, we tell you what you need to know before surgery.

Mental health professionals

We explain the difference between psychiatrists, psychologists and counsellors.

13 Feb 2012 | Mental health therapists can help people with problems ranging from depression, anxiety or grief to schizophrenia and other psychoses.

Healthy eating - theres an app for that

Scan your way to healthier food choices.

19 Jan 2012 | Consumers can now use their iPhones to scan food barcodes and instantly see traffic light information thanks to an app developed by The George Institute and BUPA.

The vital vitamin D

Are you getting enough vitamin D?

18 Jan 2012 | Vitamin D deficiency has been described as a pandemic. We explain if you're at risk, and what you can do to get enough.

New Year resolutions

We look at how to meet your new year goals while avoiding the traps.

4 Jan 2012 | We look at common New Year resolutions such as joining the gym, giving up smoking or saving money.

Ministers announce future of food labelling

The results are a mixed bag.

13 Dec 2011 | Ministers have handed down their decisions on the future of food labelling, and the menu contains mixed results for consumers.

Food labelling petition

Over 3700 consumers joined the call for traffic light labels.

9 Dec 2011 | More than 3700 signatures and CHOICE’s open letter were sent to food and health ministers from around Australia.

Food labelling petition

Over 3700 consumers joined the call for traffic light labels.

9 Dec 2011 | More than 3700 signatures and CHOICE’s open letter were sent to food and health ministers from around Australia.

Daily intake percentage labels discredited  

A new report finds the front-of-pack labelling system is too confusing for consumers to understand.

28 Nov 2011 | Research has confirmed CHOICE's long-held belief that Percentage Daily Intake labels are confusing and based on inconsistent serving sizes.

Good Luck Dried Seaweed Strips recall

The recall of the product is due to high levels of naturally occurring iodine.

16 Nov 2011 | Regular consumption of these products may cause health problems in some people including pregnant and breastfeeding women.

Life Scan Blood Glucose Monitoring System recall

Some Systems are giving repeated 'error 2' warning messages when used in conditions of high temperature and/or humidity.

23 Sep 2011 | Johnson & Johnson Pty Ltd has recalled some its Life Scan One Touch Verio Blood Glucose Monitoring Systems, as some are giving repeated 'error 2' warning messages when used in conditions of high temperature and/or humidity.

Heart Foundation drops takeaway Tick

The National Heart Foundation is ending its Tick licensing program in the takeaway food industry.

22 Sep 2011 | The National Heart Foundation has announced it is scrapping its Tick licensing program in the takeaway food industry, citing its desire to broaden its work across the takeaway and catering sector.

CooperVision Avaira Toric Contact Lenses recall

CooperVision Australia has received complaints of temporary hazy or blurry vision and discomfort from wearers.

7 Sep 2011 | Laboratory tests have found that these symptoms were caused by a small amount of residue on the lenses. In all reported cases the symptoms were temporary and reversed after the contact lenses were removed.

Dementia

What can we do to boost brain health?

1 Sep 2011 | Dementia is the single greatest cause of disability in Australians aged 65 years or older. It's predicted that by 2050 it will affect one million Australians.

Swimming-goggles-and-glaucoma

Wearing some kinds of goggles may increase intraocular pressure

11 Aug 2011 | Researchers have found that some goggles can cause increased fluid pressure in the eye, which may increase the risk of glaucoma.

Sleep deprivation

Sleep deprivation could be adversely impacting your life in many ways.

11 Aug 2011 | As Australians adopt busier lifestyles, we’re also becoming more sleep deprived. CHOICE outlines why you may need more zzzzs.

"Natural" hair dye

They cost up to twice as much as supermarket products, but are health store hair dyes any healthier?

29 Jul 2011 | They have a higher price tag, but is there any benefit to buying “natural” or “organic” hair dyes? CHOICE investigates the ingredients.

Medical-imaging

We explore the risks, myths and gap payments of medical imaging.

7 Jul 2011 | From radiation risks to gap payments, CHOICE explores answers the questions about imaging technologies, including x-rays and CTs.

Probiotics

Consumers are embracing the benefits of "good" bacteria with open arms and purses.

6 Jul 2011 | "Good" bacteria, long used as starter cultures for yoghurts and fermented dairy drinks, are now in high consumer demand, particularly probiotics.

Dodgy diagnostics

Some alternative diagnostic tests aren’t all they’re quacked up to be.

29 Jun 2011 | Some diagnostic tests offered by natural therapists are unreliable or just plain nonsense. CHOICE investigates some common ones.

cholesterol-lowering cheese

Believe it or not, Kraft introduces cheese products that can actually help lower cholesterol levels.

5 Apr 2011 | One of the main things people with high cholesterol cut down on is cheese. These new Kraft products could be a welcome addition to some fridges.

CHOICE-summer-guide

Be proactive about your New Year's fitness resolution with this round-up of tips and recommended products.

20 Jan 2011 | We've put together the CHOICE summer guide to help you get the best start to 2011.

Depression

One in six Australians will experience an episode of depression at sometime in their lives.

15 Oct 2010 | Fortunately, a range of effective and affordable treatments is available, ranging from talking therapies to certain drugs, and may be more affordable than you imagine.

Sodium

Australians are consuming up to 10 times the amount of sodium we need for good health.

11 Oct 2010 | Australia’s salt habit is costing the nation much more than the in-store price tag. But will binning our salt shakers solve the problem?

Omega 3s

Essential for children's development and our ongoing brain, heart and joint health. Are you getting enough?

6 Oct 2010 | Omega-3s in our diet can prevent cardiovascular disease and may even protect against arthritis, mental decline and Alzheimer’s disease.

Treadmills buying guide   

Like to exercise in private rather than in a gym? A treadmill could be for you.

3 Sep 2010 | We all know we need to exercise, but few of us have the time, or the motivation to fit it into our lives. That's where the home treadmill comes in.

Power Balance quick review

This so-called exercise-assisting “hologram” is nothing more than a pricey placebo.

26 Aug 2010 | Power Balance claims its products work with, and optimise, your body’s energy field.

Cardiovascular disease

Early testing can help reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.

25 May 2010 | If you’re aged over 45, it’s time to get your cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk checked. We outline an action plan for cardiovascular health.

Screening tests

We look at the major screening programs for bowel, breast and prostate cancer.

31 Mar 2010 | To help decide which tests are worth taking, it's helpful to understand the criteria the public health system uses to assess possible screening tests. Many tests detect diseases before your symptoms occur.

Doctor and patient relationships

We find constructive solutions to building a healthy relationship with your doctor.

10 Mar 2010 | Had a lousy experience with a doctor? We look at some of the main bugbears and doctors' patient-from-hell stories.

Health claims on foods

Good nutrition messages or just good marketing?

21 Dec 2009 | Health claims are most likely to be used on highly processed foods rather that the fresh foods we should all be eating more of.

Cheap home gym

A few CHOICE buys will give you an effective home gym that costs less than $100.

25 Nov 2009 | Think you need lots of space and money to set up an effective home gym? CHOICE's shopping list of equipment comes in at about $100.

Heart rate monitor reviews

Whether you’re an athlete or just keeping an eye on your health when exercising, what can you expect from a heart rate monitor?

12 Nov 2009 | Choice tested 19 heart rate monitors for ease of use and performance, priced between $30 and $399.

Shelf time reducecs teas health benefits

Green tea has long been prized for its antioxidants, but recent research suggests even short-term storage drastically reduces its health benefits.

2 Jul 2009 | Just six months in the pantry could be enough to destroy nearly 90% of antioxidants in some tea, according to a recent US study.

Varicose veins

A new treatment for varicose veins looks promising but there’s a danger unqualified operators could benefit at the expense of patients.

26 May 2009 | Varicose veins can be painful, uncomfortable and lead to serious health consequences if left untreated.

Healthcare reforms

CHOICE is campaigning for citizen engagement in healthcare reform

5 May 2009 | The key problems with the health system is an insufficient focus on prevention and primary care, the inefficient and inequitable allocation of resources and the lack of commitment from government to undertake reform.

Private health insurance buying guide

Find out how to find a better policy and save.

28 Jan 2009 | Broadly speaking, you can choose hospital cover and extras/ancillary cover. These are available separately or combined.

HRT and menopause treatments

Negative publicity about HRT led to a flood of alternatives. Do they work?

20 Jan 2009 | In 2002, a major American study involving hormone replacement therapy was stopped early because researchers were concerned by increased incidence of breast cancer, heart disease and blood clots in participants.

Hearing damage

How to counter the risk of hearing loss but not miss out on entertainment.

3 Dec 2008 | Excessively loud music or video can damage your hearing.

Complementary medicines

Complementary medicines make a range of claims about their effectiveness, but these claims are not always backed up with sound evidence.

2 Dec 2008 | In some cases, complementary medicines can harm consumers’ health. Current regulatory action does not do enough to protect consumers.

Health system performance reporting

Transparency about the quality and safety of the health care system will empower consumers to make better choices.

6 Dec 2007 | Most people receive excellent care in Australia’s hospitals but as many as 10% of people may suffer harm as a direct result of the care they receive.

Body numbers

We run through the top five numbers and what you should be aiming for as a healthy adult.

28 Nov 2007 | There are lots of numbers and measurements used to describe health. We explain what they all mean.

Fluoride

Is fluoride good for your teeth, or a slow poison? We look at the most recent evidence.

23 Feb 2007 | There’s now solid scientific evidence that fluoride added to drinking water helps to protect your teeth from decay.

Save on healthcare

Seven ways to make sure you don't pay more than you have to

3 Aug 2006 | It’s bad enough having a condition that requires you to use the healthcare system, without feeling the pain in your wallet too. Here are seven ways to save yourself some cash, and make the health system work for you.

Anti-snoring-products

Is there any evidence to support claims for over-the-counter anti-snoring products?

27 Apr 2006 | According to the Guiness Book of Records, the loudest snores recorded reached 93 decibels — about the volume of a business engine.

Healthy food guide - fast food

Some "healthy" fast-food options aren't much better than a Big Mac.

3 Jan 2006 | Three "healthy" options out-Mac a Big Mac when it comes to fat and salt and seven more come close and all 10 are fattier than a KFC Original Fillet Burger.

Detox kits review and compare

Been burning the candle at both ends?

5 Oct 2005 | A week or two on a detox program won’t absolve you from a year of unhealthy eating, smoking or drinking too much alcohol.

Calcium

Keep your bones strong - calcium is a must have.

28 Apr 2005 | Up to early adulthood your body is building up the calcium in your bones. As you grow older, gradual calcium loss from your bones is inevitable - but there are things you can do to slow it down.

Multivitamins

Do you really need to take one?

6 Jan 2005 | Research shows that a balanced diet is still the best way to get your vitamins and minerals, and that diets high in whole grains, vegetables and fruit reduce the risk of cancers and other diseases.

Gyms

It’s a jungle out there and our gym survey discovered plenty of pitfalls for the unwary.

12 Jul 2004 | Interested in discovering the scope and prevalence of consumer issues with regard to gyms, CHOICE conducted an Australia-wide online survey.

Healthcare

NSW measured up on health

Report compares the NSW health system against the health systems of Australia and 10 other countries.

14 Apr 2014 | A new report shows NSW stacks up well in some aspects of healthcare, but affordability is an issue.

Health insurance complaints down

The gap between how much a consumer pays in hospital fees and how much their health fund covers is still causing headaches.

9 Apr 2014 | Health insurance industry complaints are down, The State of the Health Funds report finds, but some issues such as out-of-pocket costs, remain.

Direct-to-consumer health screening

Which health screens do more harm than good?

18 Mar 2014 | Some health-screening services promise early detection of serious disease, but may instead result in unnecessary worry or false reassurance.

Healthy ageing

Protect against diseases and conditions commonly associated with ageing by taking an active role in your health care.

27 Dec 2013 | The key to independent living and quality of life is good health, and it’s never too soon to start thinking about it.

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Blood pressure monitor reviews

Do blood pressure monitors work, and could you benefit from owning one?

24 Nov 2013 | One in seven Australian adults suffer from some form of high blood pressure. If you’re one of them, monitoring your condition regularly at home with a blood pressure monitor can be useful.

Surviving hospital: infections

The last thing you need from a hospital stay is to contract a preventable infection.

23 Oct 2013 | Hospital-acquired infections can have serious consequences, including repeat surgery – or even fatalities – and cost Australia $1bn a year. CHOICE checks up on the situation.

Cheap health cover, members only

Restricted membership health insurance funds deliver top policies at lower prices – and you may be able to join one.

27 Aug 2013 | Restricted health membership funds deliver top insurance policies at lower prices – and you may be able to join one.

Insurance comparison sites  

Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

22 Aug 2013 | Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

medical-procedures-under-the-knife

The safety, efficacy and cost of some common medical procedures has been called into question

20 Jun 2013 | As governments try to rein in health costs, identifying low-value medical procedures is a priority. We explain the issues for consumers, and tell you what you can do to ensure you get the best healthcare.

Contraception options

CHOICE reviews long term and short term contraception, including new generation pills, rings, implants and injections.

13 Jun 2013 | CHOICE's health experts compare contraceptive options available in Australia, including long-acting reversible methods, hormonal injections, IUD, the pill and emergency contraception.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Can a chiropractor replace your GP?

Chiropractors are increasingly moving into family primary care, taking on the role traditionally filled by GPs.

23 Aug 2012 | As with all medical practices, there are risks involved with chiropractic. So do the benefits for children outweigh the risks?

Online health tests

Give yourself a health check with these online resources.

22 Jun 2012 | We've selected online health tests from reputable sources to help determine your current health status and future health risks.

Hip-replacement-surgery

What you need to know before joint replacement surgery.

9 Mar 2012 | Given the recall of faulty hip replacement devices implanted in thousands of patients, we tell you what you need to know before surgery.

The rise of dental tourism

CHOICE investigates why some consumers are going overseas to save money on their dental treatment.

21 Nov 2011 | Australian consumers are increasingly looking to overseas dental treatment in order to save money on their dental bills.

Sleep deprivation

Sleep deprivation could be adversely impacting your life in many ways.

11 Aug 2011 | As Australians adopt busier lifestyles, we’re also becoming more sleep deprived. CHOICE outlines why you may need more zzzzs.

Medical-imaging

We explore the risks, myths and gap payments of medical imaging.

7 Jul 2011 | From radiation risks to gap payments, CHOICE explores answers the questions about imaging technologies, including x-rays and CTs.

Pathology gap fees

Consumers can face large gap payments for pathology, but a public provider may be able to provide a gap-free alternative.

30 Aug 2010 | It pays to ask your GP to request bulk billing wherever possible or to use a public provider.

Healthcare reforms

CHOICE is campaigning for citizen engagement in healthcare reform

5 May 2009 | The key problems with the health system is an insufficient focus on prevention and primary care, the inefficient and inequitable allocation of resources and the lack of commitment from government to undertake reform.

Private health insurance buying guide

Find out how to find a better policy and save.

28 Jan 2009 | Broadly speaking, you can choose hospital cover and extras/ancillary cover. These are available separately or combined.

Health system performance reporting

Transparency about the quality and safety of the health care system will empower consumers to make better choices.

6 Dec 2007 | Most people receive excellent care in Australia’s hospitals but as many as 10% of people may suffer harm as a direct result of the care they receive.

Body numbers

We run through the top five numbers and what you should be aiming for as a healthy adult.

28 Nov 2007 | There are lots of numbers and measurements used to describe health. We explain what they all mean.

Private health insurance

Private health insurance premiums are rising and consumers are finding their policies have hidden exclusions and high gaps.

20 Sep 2007 | Premiums have increased 33% since 2001 even though the Government promised stable premiums when it introduced 30% rebate & Lifetime health cover.

Fluoride

Is fluoride good for your teeth, or a slow poison? We look at the most recent evidence.

23 Feb 2007 | There’s now solid scientific evidence that fluoride added to drinking water helps to protect your teeth from decay.

Save on healthcare

Seven ways to make sure you don't pay more than you have to

3 Aug 2006 | It’s bad enough having a condition that requires you to use the healthcare system, without feeling the pain in your wallet too. Here are seven ways to save yourself some cash, and make the health system work for you.

Choosing a GP

Looking for doctor right.

6 Feb 2006 | The relationship you have with your doctor can be one of the most crucial in your life, particularly if you have a chronic condition or develop a serious illness.

Health food

Europe-restrains-food-health-claims

New European Union regulation lists permitted health claims, bans rest

19 Dec 2012 | Regulations have come into effect in Europe that will only allow food health claims approved by the European Food Safety Authority.

Food ministers approve health claims standard

One step forward or one step back for consumers?

10 Dec 2012 | New standards for health claims a mixed blessing for consumers.

Food-industry-launches-four-year-old-health-commitment

Food giants claim reformulation targets and decreasing product sizes will benefit consumers.

12 Oct 2012 | A group of big food companies has launched an initiative they claim will improve the health of Australians by reducing saturated fat, salt and energy (kilojoules) in processed foods.

Food claims 97 per cent fat free 100 per cent confusion

Proposed crackdown on ‘fat free’ claims must extend to all fat content claims.

3 Apr 2012 | CHOICE wants proposed rules that would restrict ‘fat free’ and ‘% fat free’ claims on food packaging to be extended to cover all claims about fat content.

Front-of-pack food labelling talks begin

Governments and stakeholders turn attention to front-of-pack labelling design.

3 Apr 2012 | CHOICE has met with key industry groups, and government officials to discuss the development of a single front-of-pack food labelling system.

The 2011 Shonky awards  

CHOICE's awards for the shoddiest services and the shonkiest products.

24 Oct 2011 | CHOICE's annual showcase of the worst of the worst consumer products and services.

Sweeteners

In today’s world of over-consumption and health issues, can the industry really justify ‘better for you’ sugar?

22 Apr 2010 | In the past half-century we’ve increasingly sweetened our food supply. But are we eating too much sugar and is it affecting our health?

Food endorsement programs

We look beyond the catchy logos to tell you which endorsement schemes you can really trust.

2 Mar 2010 | CHOICE reviews the programs behind the top 10 health and sustainability endorsement logos you see on foods.

Food steamers review and compare

Electric food steamers do what they claim, but which do it best?

7 Sep 2009 | Are steamers any healthier than other ways to steam food? CHOICE tested 15, looking at their ease of use and performace.

Health grill reviews

They’re marketed as a healthy way to cook, but do you really need one?

17 Sep 2008 | Health grills, which started to appear on the kitchen scene in the '90s, generally make claims to reduce both cooking time and the amount of fat and oil in your food.

Whole grains

There are five good reasons to include more wholegrains in your diet.

7 Aug 2008 | Wholegrains have become a marketing tool food companies use to convince us to buy one product over another.

Healthy eating

CHOICE’s expert dietitian puts our volunteers' diets to test. Find out how they measured up.

24 Jun 2008 | The most common problems in our volunteers’ diets were too much salt and not enough calcium, fibre and water.

Muesli bar reviews

Grabbing a quick muesli or muffin bar may not be the healthy fix you’re after.

9 Jan 2006 | Cereal bars, muesli bars and breakfast bars may have a healthy image but most of them are more than 20% sugar, and some deliver more saturated fat than a packet of chips.

Healthy food guide - fast food

Some "healthy" fast-food options aren't much better than a Big Mac.

3 Jan 2006 | Three "healthy" options out-Mac a Big Mac when it comes to fat and salt and seven more come close and all 10 are fattier than a KFC Original Fillet Burger.

Gyms

It’s a jungle out there and our gym survey discovered plenty of pitfalls for the unwary.

12 Jul 2004 | Interested in discovering the scope and prevalence of consumer issues with regard to gyms, CHOICE conducted an Australia-wide online survey.

Health grill

Health grill reviews

They’re marketed as a healthy way to cook, but do you really need one?

17 Sep 2008 | Health grills, which started to appear on the kitchen scene in the '90s, generally make claims to reduce both cooking time and the amount of fat and oil in your food.

Health insurance

NSW measured up on health

Report compares the NSW health system against the health systems of Australia and 10 other countries.

14 Apr 2014 | A new report shows NSW stacks up well in some aspects of healthcare, but affordability is an issue.

Health insurance complaints down

The gap between how much a consumer pays in hospital fees and how much their health fund covers is still causing headaches.

9 Apr 2014 | Health insurance industry complaints are down, The State of the Health Funds report finds, but some issues such as out-of-pocket costs, remain.

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Cheap health cover, members only

Restricted membership health insurance funds deliver top policies at lower prices – and you may be able to join one.

27 Aug 2013 | Restricted health membership funds deliver top insurance policies at lower prices – and you may be able to join one.

Insurance comparison sites  

Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

22 Aug 2013 | Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

Contraception options

CHOICE reviews long term and short term contraception, including new generation pills, rings, implants and injections.

13 Jun 2013 | CHOICE's health experts compare contraceptive options available in Australia, including long-acting reversible methods, hormonal injections, IUD, the pill and emergency contraception.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Save-on-hearing-aids

You may be able to save thousands on a top-range hearing aid.

20 Feb 2013 | One in six Australians suffers hearing loss, but top-end aids can cost a small fortune. We've surveyed the market to find out how and where you can save.

1 July 2012 - changes that affect you

The new financial year sees the introduction of a number of reforms aimed at helping consumers.

27 Jun 2012 | We outline some key consumer reforms that will come into place on 1 July 2012.

Health insurance means testing

Pre-pay health insurance and save.

22 Apr 2012 | From July 1, health insurance premiums will increase for high-income earners. Pre-pay your annual premium now and any rebate reductions will only apply in 12 months time.

Hip-replacement-surgery

What you need to know before joint replacement surgery.

9 Mar 2012 | Given the recall of faulty hip replacement devices implanted in thousands of patients, we tell you what you need to know before surgery.

Pathology gap fees

Consumers can face large gap payments for pathology, but a public provider may be able to provide a gap-free alternative.

30 Aug 2010 | It pays to ask your GP to request bulk billing wherever possible or to use a public provider.

Healthcare reforms

CHOICE is campaigning for citizen engagement in healthcare reform

5 May 2009 | The key problems with the health system is an insufficient focus on prevention and primary care, the inefficient and inequitable allocation of resources and the lack of commitment from government to undertake reform.

Private health insurance buying guide

Find out how to find a better policy and save.

28 Jan 2009 | Broadly speaking, you can choose hospital cover and extras/ancillary cover. These are available separately or combined.

Private health insurance

Private health insurance premiums are rising and consumers are finding their policies have hidden exclusions and high gaps.

20 Sep 2007 | Premiums have increased 33% since 2001 even though the Government promised stable premiums when it introduced 30% rebate & Lifetime health cover.

Save on healthcare

Seven ways to make sure you don't pay more than you have to

3 Aug 2006 | It’s bad enough having a condition that requires you to use the healthcare system, without feeling the pain in your wallet too. Here are seven ways to save yourself some cash, and make the health system work for you.

Gyms

It’s a jungle out there and our gym survey discovered plenty of pitfalls for the unwary.

12 Jul 2004 | Interested in discovering the scope and prevalence of consumer issues with regard to gyms, CHOICE conducted an Australia-wide online survey.

Health-Partners

Health insurance complaints down

The gap between how much a consumer pays in hospital fees and how much their health fund covers is still causing headaches.

9 Apr 2014 | Health insurance industry complaints are down, The State of the Health Funds report finds, but some issues such as out-of-pocket costs, remain.

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Insurance comparison sites  

Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

22 Aug 2013 | Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Healthy eating

First Health Star Ratings hit the shelves

Local company Monster Health Food Co rolls out new food labelling scheme

16 Apr 2014 | The move by Monster is a welcome step forward for the Health Star Rating Scheme.

Is coconut oil healthy?

Is coconut oil all it’s cracked up to be, or just another fad? We investigate to find out whether it lives up to the health hype.

23 Feb 2014 | Coconut oil is being hailed as the next big thing. CHOICE finds out what the experts have to say about this year’s latest food trend.

Healthy ageing

Protect against diseases and conditions commonly associated with ageing by taking an active role in your health care.

27 Dec 2013 | The key to independent living and quality of life is good health, and it’s never too soon to start thinking about it.

Be a star

Support front-of-pack nutrition star labelling on food - sign our petition

13 Nov 2013 | CHOICE is calling on consumers to support front-of-pack nutrition star labels for food products by signing our petition.

New star ratings for food products

Ministers agree to star ratings for food nutrition labelling

14 Jun 2013 | A new system of star ratings will help consumers make healthier decisions in the supermarket aisle.

Palm oil labelling

How can we make healthier and sustainably sound choices if manufacturers don't make it clear that their products contain palm oil?

20 May 2013 | It contains high levels of saturated fats and causes environmental damage, so we look into why specific palm oil labelling isn't mandatory.

Everyday superfoods

Which nine foods available from the supermarket could help you live a longer and better quality of life?

30 Apr 2013 | Filling up your trolley with everyday grocery items such as olive oil, wholegrains and yoghurt could help you reduce your risk of certain diseases.

The not-so-super foods

From chia seeds to acai berries, we look beyond the hype to find out if the health benefits of some so-called "superfoods" live up to their claims.

23 Apr 2013 | Some foods claim to do everything from prevent cancer to help you lose weight, but do they deserve to be touted as super?

Stevia-sugar-substitute

Will low-kilojoule sweetener stevia revolutionise the way we flavour our food?

26 Mar 2013 | Stevia is hailed as a zero-kilojoule natural sweetener that will help reduce the amount of sugar we consume. But just how natural is it?

The rise of nutritional branding

Pure, natural and healthy or laden with salt, sugar and saturated fat?

20 Nov 2012 | We look at 200 products with implied health or quality claims and discover there is a fine line between healthy and hoodwinked.

Food-industry-launches-four-year-old-health-commitment

Food giants claim reformulation targets and decreasing product sizes will benefit consumers.

12 Oct 2012 | A group of big food companies has launched an initiative they claim will improve the health of Australians by reducing saturated fat, salt and energy (kilojoules) in processed foods.

Coconut Water - fab or fad?

We find out if coconut water is all it's cracked up to be.

21 Aug 2012 | It's been hailed as 'nature's sports drink', but does coconut water live up to its health claims?

SensaSlim sues Ken Harvey

Weight-loss spray still on the market while consumer champ Dr Ken Harvey battles in court.

21 Jun 2011 | A behind-the-scenes look at the defamation lawsuit by SensaSlim against consumer-health advocate Dr Ken Harvey reveals a deep flaw in TGA regulations.

Extra virgin olive oil reviews

Is what you buy the real deal?

22 Jun 2010 | There’s currently no mandatory standard for extra virgin olive oil sold in Australia. CHOICE testing of 28 brands found you can't always trust an oil labelled "extra virgin" is the real deal.

Sweeteners

In today’s world of over-consumption and health issues, can the industry really justify ‘better for you’ sugar?

22 Apr 2010 | In the past half-century we’ve increasingly sweetened our food supply. But are we eating too much sugar and is it affecting our health?

Pizza reviews

We reveal which brands and chains offer the healthiest and tastiest options.

15 Mar 2010 | CHOICE compared more than 190 brands and flavours of pizza available nationally from supermarkets (chilled or frozen) or from takeaway chains. We found some big differences in nutritional value – and in value for money.

Ready meals

From shelf to microwave, they're ready in minutes. But are these packaged meals any good?

3 Feb 2010 | Supermarket shelves are crammed with shelf-stable meals, costing between $3 and $5. We sort the best from the rest.

Health grill reviews

They’re marketed as a healthy way to cook, but do you really need one?

17 Sep 2008 | Health grills, which started to appear on the kitchen scene in the '90s, generally make claims to reduce both cooking time and the amount of fat and oil in your food.

Hearing

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Novelty phone handsets

We've checked out a number of novelty handsets for designed for use with a mobile phone. But how well do they work?

4 Mar 2013 | We put five retro handsets and one bluetooth glove designed for use with a mobile phone through their paces.

Save-on-hearing-aids

You may be able to save thousands on a top-range hearing aid.

20 Feb 2013 | One in six Australians suffers hearing loss, but top-end aids can cost a small fortune. We've surveyed the market to find out how and where you can save.

Noise-cancelling headphones and earphones reviews

These gadgets keep the music happening without driving your neighbours mad.

4 Apr 2012 | Test results for seven noise-cancelling headphones and six noise-cancelling earphones.

Hearing damage

How to counter the risk of hearing loss but not miss out on entertainment.

3 Dec 2008 | Excessively loud music or video can damage your hearing.

heart-foundation

Heart Foundation drops takeaway Tick

The National Heart Foundation is ending its Tick licensing program in the takeaway food industry.

22 Sep 2011 | The National Heart Foundation has announced it is scrapping its Tick licensing program in the takeaway food industry, citing its desire to broaden its work across the takeaway and catering sector.

heart-foundation-tick

Heart Foundation drops takeaway Tick

The National Heart Foundation is ending its Tick licensing program in the takeaway food industry.

22 Sep 2011 | The National Heart Foundation has announced it is scrapping its Tick licensing program in the takeaway food industry, citing its desire to broaden its work across the takeaway and catering sector.

Heaters

Home heating guide

Follow our tips to keep warm and save yourself money this winter.

31 May 2013 | Winter is here, so it's time to consider your heating options. Here are our tips to reduce your energy use and your bills.

Electric heater reviews

We review 29 electric heaters, priced from $39 to $595, including convection, radiant-and-convection and fan models.

17 May 2013 | A portable electric heater can kill the chill. Check our test results for newly tested models from DeLonghi, Omega, Sunbeam and others.

Heating options for your home buying guide

How to keep your home warm this winter. Get unbiased advice and reviews on heaters and heating options.

9 Jul 2012 | Did you freeze last winter? Were you in shock after reading the energy bill? Then it may be time to change the way you heat your home.

Unflued gas heater reviews

Warm up large spaces quickly and efficiently.

30 May 2012 | Unflued gas heaters deliver quick, energy-efficient and comparatively cheap warmth to individual rooms in your home.

Electric flame effect heaters review and compare

Enjoy the romantic look of a traditional wood or coal-burning fire without the mess.

5 May 2008 | The look is so integral to their overall purpose you can even put the flame effect on without generating any heat!

Heating

Large air conditioner reviews

Find out which air conditioner is best for your home - whether you want to heat up a single room or a large living area this winter.

10 Apr 2014 | Over 130 reverse-cycle split-system inverter air conditioners compared and reviewed, including models from Daikin, Fujitsu, Panasonic and more.

Home heating guide

Follow our tips to keep warm and save yourself money this winter.

31 May 2013 | Winter is here, so it's time to consider your heating options. Here are our tips to reduce your energy use and your bills.

Electric heater reviews

We review 29 electric heaters, priced from $39 to $595, including convection, radiant-and-convection and fan models.

17 May 2013 | A portable electric heater can kill the chill. Check our test results for newly tested models from DeLonghi, Omega, Sunbeam and others.

Heating options for your home buying guide

How to keep your home warm this winter. Get unbiased advice and reviews on heaters and heating options.

9 Jul 2012 | Did you freeze last winter? Were you in shock after reading the energy bill? Then it may be time to change the way you heat your home.

Unflued gas heater reviews

Warm up large spaces quickly and efficiently.

30 May 2012 | Unflued gas heaters deliver quick, energy-efficient and comparatively cheap warmth to individual rooms in your home.

Small air conditioner reviews

A reverse-cycle air conditioner can be the most efficient way to heat (and cool) a large room.

27 Apr 2012 | Test results for 36 reverse-cycle inverter air conditioners with cooling capacities around 2.5 to 3.5 kW, including nine newly tested models.

Lauritz Mood Flame Ethanol Burning Fire Place recall

Ethanol may leak from the fuel cup and ignite causing property damage, injury and/or loss of life.

27 Sep 2011 | Dusk Australasia Pty Ltd has recalled Lauritz Mood Flame ethanol burning fireplaces sold between 10th August and 9th September this year.

Electric blanket

With a modern electric blanket you’ll not only sleep warmly but also more safely – if you take safety precautions.

15 Jul 2010 | When temperatures drop, the idea of an electric blanket begins to sound more and more appealing.

Flued gas log fires

The cheapest of the five units tested cost more than $4000 installed, so it pays to buy wisely.

21 Apr 2010 | Flued-gas heating, where fumes are released or pushed outside, offers an efficient and effective option for a big area.

Home insulation buying guide

The government's home insulation bungle has demonstrated the importance of knowing what's what.

4 Feb 2010 | We run through the options for insulating your home.

Electric flame effect heaters review and compare

Enjoy the romantic look of a traditional wood or coal-burning fire without the mess.

5 May 2008 | The look is so integral to their overall purpose you can even put the flame effect on without generating any heat!

hedge trimmers

Lawn trimmer reviews

Lawn trimmer, whipper-snipper, weed-eater, line trimmer - whatever the name, which is best for your backyard?

8 Aug 2013 | We test 42 petrol, electric, and cordless lawn trimmers (AKA line trimmers, weed-eaters, whipper-snippers), ranging from $49 to $409.

Heller

Pedestal and tower fan reviews

We find the best fans to keep you cool this summer.

27 Nov 2012 | We test 10 pedestal and tower fans, priced from $20 to $599, including models from Dyson, Kambrook, and Sunbeam.

HIF

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Hifi systems

Surround sound AV receiver reviews

A Surround sound AV receiver is your home theatre system's command centre.

27 Nov 2013 | We test 16 surround sound AV receivers, to find out which models have the best sound quality, and are the easiest to use.

Home theatre quick look

What are your surround sound options?

10 Sep 2013 | CHOICE provides a realistic look at home theatre in a box.

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

Home theatre speakers reviews  

If you can part with $2000 or more, you can get an exciting listening experience.

7 Sep 2011 | CHOICE reviews home theatre speakers valued from $2000 to $3000.

Mini hifi with iPod dock reviews

Mini and midi hi-fi systems can deliver good sound for your iPod without breaking the bank.

17 Mar 2011 | Some of these mini and midi hi-fi systems punch well above their weight when it comes to sound quality.

First look Micro Hi-Fi with digital radio player

Why should digital radios cost more?

3 Aug 2010 | This system from Sony offers digital radio at an affordable price – finally.

Q-ACOUSTICS-Q-TV2 first look

If you're disappointed with the sound from your TV, this could be a neat solution.

1 Feb 2010 | This audio device attaches to the back of your TV and can fit 81cm-106cm screen sizes.

Highchairs

Portable high chair reviews

Harnesses, boosters and clip-on toddler and infant seats are compact alternatives to a standard high chair.

23 Aug 2013 | 27 portable high chairs - including clip-on, booster, and harness types - tested for safety and security.

High chair reviews  

We've tested 13 new high chairs, including models from Childcare, Ikea and Stokke.

25 Mar 2013 | CHOICE has tested 34 high chairs, priced from $30 to $600, to the Australian standard. Find out which models we recommend.

Baby safety - a shopping guide

We've put together a guide to help you with your buying decisions. It focuses on features, safety and ease of use.

21 May 2012 | Shopping for your new baby is a minefield - what's safe, what's not an what's actually useful?

Organic baby food reviews

Not all organic baby food is created equal.

30 Nov 2011 | Our review of 136 baby food varieties for under 1s has found there’s more to (or sometimes less of) these products than meets the eye.

Furniture: Cots, cradles, playpens, highchairs

Don't purchase a cot, cradle, playpen or highchair until you've read our informative guide.

4 Sep 2009 | Use our checklist to make sure you have taken all necessary steps to guarantee your baby’s safe sleeping and playing environment.

Up-market baby food

All baby foods are not created equal.

23 Feb 2007 | We’ve put up-market, gourmet, and organic baby food for the under 1s under the microscope to see how they stack up.

Recipes for toddlers

Here's some quick recipes that are easy to make and sure to please your little one.

24 Jul 2003 | These simple recipes come from CHOICE's popular book title, Practical Cooking for Babies and Toddlers.

Highland

Gas cooktop reviews

We've tested 11 new gas cooktops, including Blanco, Bosch, Electrolux and Miele models.

14 Mar 2013 | We have test results for 39 gas cooktops ranging in price from $329 to $3389. Which are the best performers?

Hipod

Booster seat reviews

Many children have restraints that are too big for them and graduate to adult seatbelts too early.

12 Sep 2012 | We review 12 new booster seats suitable for children aged from about four to eight years, looking at ease of use and ease of fitting.

hip-replacements

Hip-replacement-surgery

What you need to know before joint replacement surgery.

9 Mar 2012 | Given the recall of faulty hip replacement devices implanted in thousands of patients, we tell you what you need to know before surgery.

Hire cars

hire car excess

Rental car companies can take you for a ride with hire car insurance - CHOICE checks out some alternatives.

6 Sep 2013 | Hire car companies can take you for a ride with rental car insurance, so CHOICE checks out some alternatives.

Australian Consumer Law - One year on

One year on, we take a look at the successes and downfalls of the ACL in its debut year.

23 Dec 2011 | The newly introduced Australian Consumer Law gives consumers better protection when purchasing than ever before.

Hirun

Electric bike reviews

Test results for 18 electric bike options ranging in price from $1050 to $3299.

14 Jan 2014 | Electric bikes are gaining traction in the bike market and there are many reasons why you may prefer some assistance with your pedal power.

Hisense

Plasma and LCD TV reviews  

We put TVs of all types through their paces in our laboratories.

10 Mar 2014 | Which TV best suits your needs? Our review will help you make the critical decisions.

hitachi

Large air conditioner reviews

Find out which air conditioner is best for your home - whether you want to heat up a single room or a large living area this winter.

10 Apr 2014 | Over 130 reverse-cycle split-system inverter air conditioners compared and reviewed, including models from Daikin, Fujitsu, Panasonic and more.

Hitachi Inverter Welding Machine recall

If the product is not used according to instructions there is a risk of fire and burn injuries.

11 Jan 2012 | Lincoln Electric Company (Australia) Pty. Ltd is recalling Hitachi Inverter Welding Machines.

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

Holden

Small vehicle repair costs

The results of this low-speed crash test show there are vast differences in repair costs across the range of top selling small vehicles.

28 Nov 2012 | NRMA Insurance put the spotlight on nine top selling small vehicles in Australia to see how their bumpers performed when involved in a collision.

Holden JG Cruze Series I Diesel

Potential manufacturing defect within fuel feed hose.

8 Dec 2011 | GM Holden Ltd is recalling Holden JG Cruze Series I (Diesel) vehicles due to a potential manufacturing defect within fuel feed hose.

Holden Epica 2.0L recall

This vehicle has been recalled due to a potential manufacturing defect within fuel feed hose.

6 Dec 2011 | Holden Epica 2.0L vehicles, are being recalled due to a potential manufacturing defect within fuel feed hose.

Home and contents insurance

Home and contents insurance claim

Homeowners affected by Cyclone Ita have started to claim on home and contents insurance.

17 Apr 2014 | North Queensland is facing a massive recovery after Cyclone Ita. Follow our tips to lodge your home and contents insurance claim.

Home-warranty-insurance

Home owners find little value for money when it comes to home warranty insurance.

6 Mar 2014 | Home warranty insurance is supposed to protect homeowners from incompetent builders, but it doesn’t do much to protect against unscrupulous ones.

Home and contents insurance reviews

Keep hikes to your home and contents policy at bay with our complete guide to home and contents insurance.

17 Jan 2014 | We review 64 home and contents insurance products from 29 different brands right across Australia, including AAMI, GIO, NRMA and Suncorp.

Insurance comparison sites  

Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

22 Aug 2013 | Looking for a new health, car, or home insurance policy? CHOICE's review of comparison websites reveals some hidden catches.

Home and contents premium hikes

Why is the insurance industry playing fast and loose with the flood cover issue?

31 Jan 2013 | Premium hikes over the last year have often come with the addition of mandatory flood cover, but it’s not clear flood risk has anything to do with it.

New-brief-for-disaster-relief

Government recommends a fresh take on insurance claims handling.

1 Mar 2012 | In the wake of the government's inquiry, CHOICE questions whether the industry’s moves so far have meant better protection for consumers.

Insurance premiums hiked up

Home and Contents premiums hit the stratosphere.

20 Jan 2012 | Since the start of the year CHOICE members have been sharing hair-raising stories of premium hikes for home and contents insurance, mainly due to the addition of flood cover.

The 2011 Shonky awards  

CHOICE's awards for the shoddiest services and the shonkiest products.

24 Oct 2011 | CHOICE's annual showcase of the worst of the worst consumer products and services.

Home and contents insurance fact sheet

Choose the right policy and beware of underinsurance.

20 Oct 2011 | Estimates vary, but some say up to 80% of Australian homes are underinsured.

Home entertainment

Plasma and LCD TV reviews  

We put TVs of all types through their paces in our laboratories.

10 Mar 2014 | Which TV best suits your needs? Our review will help you make the critical decisions.

LG OLED TV first look

20 Dec 2013 | OLED is the latest technology in televisions. CHOICE checks out the new-release OLED TV from LG.

Surround sound AV receiver reviews

A Surround sound AV receiver is your home theatre system's command centre.

27 Nov 2013 | We test 16 surround sound AV receivers, to find out which models have the best sound quality, and are the easiest to use.

Home theatre system reviews  

Home theatre marketing claims don't always live up to the reality.

12 Sep 2013 | We test the latest all-in-one home theatre systems, priced from $699 to $1499.

Home theatre quick look

What are your surround sound options?

10 Sep 2013 | CHOICE provides a realistic look at home theatre in a box.

Web TV series

Find the newest and most daring web-only TV shows

30 Aug 2013 | TV on the internet is gaining a new audience as viewers find new and unique shows for all types of interests.

TV on the net  

When it comes to watching popular TV shows via online streaming, we're missing out.

9 Jul 2013 | Australian viewers get a raw deal when it comes to streaming our favourite TV shows online. We pay more, yet content isn’t easily accessible or not available when we want.

Wireless speakers reviews  

Wireless speakers let you play music while keeping your smartphone or music player close to hand.

17 Apr 2013 | We review 16 wireless speakers, priced from $199 to $799, including models from Sony, Bose Pioneer, Sonos and Logitech.

Home theatre projectors

The best home theatre projectors can produce some very impressive images.

19 Mar 2013 | We've tested 10 home theatre projectors, ranging in price from $1799 to $3999, to reveal which have the best picture quality and are easiest to use.

Sony 3D viewer first look

This device lets you watch and play in 3D in relative privacy.

1 May 2012 | We take a look at the Sony HMZ-T1 personal 3d viewer, and find out whether it stacks up to its claims.

Audiovisual receivers buying guide

AV receivers sell the idea of turning your living room into a cinema. How much should you spend?

5 Apr 2012 | When you buy a home theatre in a box the AV receiver and DVD player are often combined. However, there's good reasons to buy separate components.

102-107cm TV reviews  

Our updated report looks at the latest HD plasma and LCD televisions.

2 Feb 2012 | CHOICE puts the latest 102-107cm HD plasma and LCD televisions through their paces.

81cm LCD TV reviews  

Our update reviews the latest models and newest technology.

31 Jan 2012 | Get unbiased test results for the latest 81cm LCD televisions, priced from $497 to $1399.

117cm TV reviews  

Don’t be swayed by the latest tech-speak when shopping for a new TV – just look at the picture.

31 Oct 2011 | CHOICE reviews the latest 117cm LCD and plasma TVs, priced $1199 to $3799.

FetchTV first look

CHOICE takes a look at an internet-based alternative to pay TV.

26 Oct 2011 | FetchTV provides another alternative to cable, with your Internet provider delivering a host of channels and rental movies to your television.

HD set-top box reviews  

A high-definition set-top box is an inexpensive way to upgrade to digital TV.

13 Oct 2011 | We put 14 set-top boxes, priced from $80 to $150, through their paces, and find out which ones come out on top.

Home theatre speakers reviews  

If you can part with $2000 or more, you can get an exciting listening experience.

7 Sep 2011 | CHOICE reviews home theatre speakers valued from $2000 to $3000.

Keeping fit with consoles

Use the motion controller in the latest consoles to keep fit at home.

14 Apr 2011 | We asked 17 people to try out a selection of fitness, party games and multi-player titles on three consoles.

Mini hifi with iPod dock reviews

Mini and midi hi-fi systems can deliver good sound for your iPod without breaking the bank.

17 Mar 2011 | Some of these mini and midi hi-fi systems punch well above their weight when it comes to sound quality.

TV LCD 94cm review and compare

A large-screen TV may look impressive, but it might not be ideal for your room.

15 Mar 2011 | The top peformers in this test deliver a quality picture - and prove that performance needn't come at a cost.

Set up your home theatre  

Cut through the sales talk. Watch part 2 of our video series on the basics of home theatre.

25 Aug 2010 | Our expert reveals more of the mistakes that are made setting up home theatre systems.

Setting up a home theatre  

Don't get duped by the sales hype. See part one of our video series on the basics of home theatre.

6 Aug 2010 | Our expert talks you through some of the more common mistakes you could make when setting up your home theatre.

First look Base turntable

BASE music system with direct encoding TT-186WWEA

19 Jul 2010 | This system can convert your old vinyl records to MP3 files.


EPG review and compare

Electronic program guides (EPGs) are supposed to help Australians record their weekly TV fix, but how reliable are they?

2 May 2010 | CHOICE explains why electronic program guides fall short of the mark.

Digital and internet radio

Digital radios, while expensive, allow you to listen to internet radio or music stored on your home network.

17 Mar 2010 | We test 10 digital radios, priced from $170 to $1000.

Q-ACOUSTICS-Q-TV2 first look

If you're disappointed with the sound from your TV, this could be a neat solution.

1 Feb 2010 | This audio device attaches to the back of your TV and can fit 81cm-106cm screen sizes.

Sony PlayTV

This add-on device for PlayStation3 owners has its limitations.

3 Dec 2009 | The Sony PlayTV struggles to provide an effective two-in-one games console and personal video recorder machine.

DVD/HDD recorders review and compare

A DVD recorder with a 160GB hard drive gives you hundreds of hours of recording capacity.

26 Nov 2009 | Test results for four DVD/hard disc recorders with a capacity of 160GB, priced from $440 to $659.

Freeview background

Freeview products deliver HD Digital TV, but so do many other non-Freeview branded products.

19 Oct 2009 | CHOICE looks at Freeview, what it's offering and what it means, as well as what you gain, or lose, when compared to an identical non-Freeview product.

EPGs

What’s an electronic program guide (EPG) and do you need one?

11 Aug 2009 | An electronic program guide is just a TV guide by another name. More than that, it's a useful tool for planning and organising your TV watching.

HD Projectors review and compare

For a real home theatre experience, you can’t match an HD projector.

10 Aug 2009 | High-definition TV screens are all the rage these days and seem to be getting bigger by the month, but if you want a real home theatre experience even the biggest LCD and plasma screens can’t hold a candle to an HD projector.

Nintendo DSi

Nintendo’s latest childish diversion may hook some adults as well.

23 Jun 2009 | CHOICE enlisted the most expert tester available – a 10-year-old schoolboy – to evaluate Nintendo’s latest handheld gaming console and discover what’s new with one of the most popular gaming devices on the planet.

Guide to digital radios

Digital radio has hit the airwaves.

19 Jan 2009 | If you're keen to experience the difference digital technology makes to the radio waves you will have to open your wallet along with your eyes and ears.

Samsung HT-BD review

The Samsung HT-BD2 is the first of a new category: the Blu-ray home theatre system.

17 Jul 2008 | CHOICE tested it alongside several other models that were Blu-ray players only to see how it would rate as a player.

Converging in the lounge room feature

Can all those bits and pieces of electrical gear go into one box?

12 Jun 2008 | In this article we’re looking at the relatively cheap option of using one system to manage sound and video, along with internet and computer gaming throughout your house.

Nintendo Wii quick review

Is the latest games console a must-have or mere novelty?

1 May 2008 | Nintendo’s Wii introduced a new era of gaming by eschewing the path taken by the other games console manufacturers and produced something a little innovative.

Speaker dock reviews

Take a bus ride these days or walk down the street and nearly everyone you pass is tuned in to a portable music player.

18 Apr 2008 | These speaker docks let you listen to your music aloud, but don’t expect too much in terms of sound quality.

Cables

Knowing your cables will be a big help when setting up your home entertainment system.

8 Feb 2007 | Knowing the difference between cables will help you work out how to connect your devices.

Home theatre projectors review and compare

Digital projectors bring the movies to your lounge room.

3 Jan 2007 | A projector may not be the most suitable display for watching television or playing games as the lamps can be expensive to replace.

Home-Hero

Steam mop reviews  

Steam mops are an effective way to clean your home and many people are opting for these over a mop and bucket.

16 Jan 2014 | Test results for 25 steam mops, including 12 newly tested models, priced from $49 to $349.

Homelite

Lawn trimmer reviews

Lawn trimmer, whipper-snipper, weed-eater, line trimmer - whatever the name, which is best for your backyard?

8 Aug 2013 | We test 42 petrol, electric, and cordless lawn trimmers (AKA line trimmers, weed-eaters, whipper-snippers), ranging from $49 to $409.

Hedge trimmer reviews

We check out cordless battery-powered and electric hedge trimmers priced from $59 to $299.

27 Aug 2012 | Electric and battery-powered hedge trimmers are handy for keeping wayward hedges at bay - but which type should you go for?

Home loans

Protect your credit rating

Even if you’re just days late paying a bill, new credit reporting rules meant a black mark on your credit rating. But there's a welcome development.

10 Apr 2014 | A new credit reporting regime means if you pay your credit card or car loan more than five days late it’ll put a black mark on your credit rating.

More time to pay before black mark on credit report

Consumers now have 14 days to pay before a black mark is registered on their credit report.

10 Apr 2014 | Consumers now have 14 days to make minimum payments on credit cards and other credit contracts before a black mark is registered on their credit report.

Rent to buy crackdown

Consumer Protection in WA clamps down on dodgy rent-to-buy scheme operators.

1 Apr 2014 | Operators of rent-to-buy home buying schemes, which cash in on would-be home-owners' desperation to enter the property market, have been taken to court by Consumer Protection WA.

First home saver account

CHOICE explains how you can use a first home saver account to buy your first home and avoid mortgage insurance.

25 Feb 2014 | First home buyers have it harder than ever before. But a first home saver account can help you maximise your deposit.

Mortgage debt

Australian households have experienced a spike in debt over the last two decades.

12 Apr 2013 | We look into the trend of a rising debt-to-income ratio in Australia. What's behind it, and what can you do to minimise your own mortgage debt?

Compare, ditch and switch

If your bank isn't giving you the very best deal then it's time to Compare, Ditch and Switch.

8 Oct 2012 | The RBA has once again cut the cash rate, but has your bank followed suit? If not it's time to Compare, Ditch, Switch and save!

Compare, ditch, switch & save

Cut through the interest rate confusion with our Compare, Ditch & Switch comparison tool.

12 Jun 2012 | Cut through the interest rate confusion with our Compare, Ditch & Switch comparison tool.

Home loan fact sheet shadow shop

The results of our key facts sheet shadow shop were unpleasantly surprising.

19 Feb 2012 | While most of the institutions we visited do provide key fact sheets on their websites, overall it seems that bank staff have little or no idea the fact sheets even exist.

No justification for banks to raise interest rates

The Big Four are playing by their own rules, and you can too.

16 Feb 2012 | There is plenty of competition in the Australian market, which is why raising rates is just bad business.

The Big Bank Switch is on - offers now open

26 Sep 2011 | CHOICE says that One Big Switch (OBS) is ready to put mortgage offers to the 40,000 people who registered their interest in the Big Bank Switch.

Refinancing-your-home-loan

We uncover the path to finding the best mortgage and making the most of your money.

16 Sep 2011 | Switch and save and take a fresh look at the interest rates on your home loan. We take you through the basics and present some easy options to put you on the fast track to a better deal.

Intelligent-design-for-your-mortgage-data

A creative proposal to make mortgage statements more consumer-friendly

23 Aug 2011 | Do bank statements make your eyes glaze over? Two creative types from Brisbane are tackling the complexity of the banking sector with an interesting proposal to “fix” mortgage statements.

Mortgage exit fees ban becomes law

New law is a victory for consumers and for CHOICE

24 Mar 2011 |

Reverse mortgages

A reverse mortgage can help fund your retirement. CHOICE outlines the risks.

2 Nov 2010 | Reverse mortgages target homeowners aged 60 and older who want to borrow money against the value of their property.

Are mortgage brokers working in your interest?

Can you be sure brokers are working for you and not their own sales targets?

8 Oct 2009 | The CBA now requires mortgage brokers to submit a minimum of four loan applications and settle a minimum of three every six months, which presents an obvious conflict of interest.

Fixed rate loan pain

Home owners who locked in their loans 12 months ago now pay about 30% more interest than those on variable rates.

6 Feb 2009 | Fixed rates have now come down to about their lowest point in the past 10 years.

Mortage stress your alternatives

Are tougher economic times squeezing your household budget? Know your options and rights if you're struggling to make mortgage repayments.

3 Feb 2009 | In this report, we explain a range of options available if you’re experiencing mortgage difficulties.

Home loans switch and save

Find the best mortgage. Here's how to save thousands on your home loan.

2 Oct 2008 | The best savings were achieved by switching to a credit union or an online subsidiary of a major bank – and you can’t get any of those loans through mortgage brokers.

How to choose a home loan

Use our tips to negotiate the mortgage maze.

19 May 2008 | For some people, flexibility and peace of mind are important, and there are a range of home loan options that offer such benefits.

Using mortgage brokers

How to avoid the traps and get the most from a mortgage broker when shopping around for a home loan.

21 Apr 2008 | If brokers’ advertisements and claims are to be believed, they’re the answer for anyone seeking a loan to suit their circumstances.

Fast-track your mortgage

The best way to own your home sooner is to get a cheap loan and make higher payments, more often.

1 Mar 2008 | Extra repayments can have a huge effect. Our case studies were amazed at how modest extra payments could save tens of thousands in interest.

Reverse mortgage shadow shop

Our shadow shop revealed poor advice and information from reverse mortgage sellers.

27 Feb 2007 | Originally reverse mortgages were sold directly by the lender, but in the last few years mortgage brokers have started to offer these products.

Risky home loans

We expose the traps of new types of loans, including 40-year mortgages and no-deposit home loans.

5 Jan 2006 | With first homes averaging $430,000 and housing affordability at a record low, new types of loan may seem tempting — but are they safe?

Homemaker

Garment steamer reviews

These steamers are a gentler way of removing wrinkles from your clothing.

5 Feb 2014 | The latest garment steamers are put through their paces, including models from Conair, Kambrook, Jiffy and Homemaker.

Gift ideas for the kitchen

These gift ideas will please any budding amateur chef.

29 Nov 2011 | CHOICE picks the kitchen gadgets that will make great Christmas presents for anyone who loves to cook.

Christmas gift guide

We've trawled our test results to bring you a range of great gift ideas.

16 Nov 2011 | From digital cameras to kitchen gadgets, our gift ideas cater to all budgets.

Home renovation

Home-warranty-insurance

Home owners find little value for money when it comes to home warranty insurance.

6 Mar 2014 | Home warranty insurance is supposed to protect homeowners from incompetent builders, but it doesn’t do much to protect against unscrupulous ones.

Interior paint reviews

Our independent test shows several good performers, including three low-odour paints.

7 Sep 2011 | CHOICE tests 21 interior acrylic low sheen paints to find out which ones you should be putting on your walls.

Planning a new kitchen

What to look for and how to stay on budget.

12 Aug 2010 | A kitchen is often the showcase in today’s open-plan living space, so designing and building one that suits your home and needs is essential.

Cordless drill reviews

These cordless drills are for the serious DIY enthusiast.

17 Aug 2009 | A cordless drill is a must-have tool for the dedicated do-it-yourselfer or tradesperson. CHOICE put 10 cordless drills through a tough set of tests to find which ones are up to the job.

Home cool guide

Do you really need an air conditioner?

22 Apr 2009 | A cool home’s important for many Australians, and an air conditioner is the only appliance that can really cool down a hot room effectively — but there are other, ways to keep the heat out of your home in the first place.

Termites

Is your house being eaten by termites? Don’t get bitten twice.

30 Oct 2005 | Our special report brings you up to date with the current issues and practice in termite treatment and helps you protect yourself from ineffective, expensive or harmful treatment.

Ladders review 2005

Are they all equal?

8 Jan 2005 | We put seven multipurpose ladders to the test as well as five stepladders to see if they'd pass a "walking" test.

Home security

Smoke alarm reviews   

We test 15 battery-powered smoke alarms, including photoelectric, ionisation and dual-sensor models.

2 Mar 2010 | While all of these smoke alarms meet the Australian Standard, they don't all offer the same level of protection.

Security doors buying guide

Great for six-legged pests, but not so good against the two-legged variety.

22 Feb 2005 | Security screen doors are designed to let you safely open up the house to air and light while you’re at home.

Home theatre

Plasma and LCD TV reviews  

We put TVs of all types through their paces in our laboratories.

10 Mar 2014 | Which TV best suits your needs? Our review will help you make the critical decisions.

LG OLED TV first look

20 Dec 2013 | OLED is the latest technology in televisions. CHOICE checks out the new-release OLED TV from LG.

Home theatre system reviews  

Home theatre marketing claims don't always live up to the reality.

12 Sep 2013 | We test the latest all-in-one home theatre systems, priced from $699 to $1499.

Home theatre quick look

What are your surround sound options?

10 Sep 2013 | CHOICE provides a realistic look at home theatre in a box.

Blu-ray player reviews

Our testing reveals whether 21 Blu-ray players live up to the hype.

26 Jun 2013 | Blu-ray players are the next step up from the DVD player, but how effective is the evolution?

Wireless speakers reviews  

Wireless speakers let you play music while keeping your smartphone or music player close to hand.

17 Apr 2013 | We review 16 wireless speakers, priced from $199 to $799, including models from Sony, Bose Pioneer, Sonos and Logitech.

Home theatre projectors

The best home theatre projectors can produce some very impressive images.

19 Mar 2013 | We've tested 10 home theatre projectors, ranging in price from $1799 to $3999, to reveal which have the best picture quality and are easiest to use.

CHOICE Guide to setting up your home entertainment system

Get the most out of your home entertainment system

12 Mar 2013 | This guide will take you through some of the more common traps that ensnare the unprepared, and help you get the most out of your home entertainment purchases.

CHOICE Guide to setting up your home

Taking out risk and guesswork when setting up your home

12 Mar 2013 | Congratulations! You’re moving into your first house. But now what? How do you begin to turn those empty rooms into your home?

Sony 3D viewer first look

This device lets you watch and play in 3D in relative privacy.

1 May 2012 | We take a look at the Sony HMZ-T1 personal 3d viewer, and find out whether it stacks up to its claims.

127-132cm TV reviews  

CHOICE puts large HD plasma and LCD televisions to the test.

3 Feb 2012 | Not all big HD TVs are 1920 x 1080, but that doesn't mean you can't get a good picture on a slightly lower resolution.

81cm LCD TV reviews  

Our update reviews the latest models and newest technology.

31 Jan 2012 | Get unbiased test results for the latest 81cm LCD televisions, priced from $497 to $1399.

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

Home theatre speakers reviews  

If you can part with $2000 or more, you can get an exciting listening experience.

7 Sep 2011 | CHOICE reviews home theatre speakers valued from $2000 to $3000.

106cm TV reviews  

Large screen HD plasma and LCD televisions on test. Review and compare models to find the best TV.

1 Feb 2011 | We take the guesswork out of buying the major television brands by putting them through their paces in our specialised laboratories.

Digital TV  

What will it mean for you?

8 Oct 2010 | Your normal analogue TV will go blank if you haven’t invested in a set-top-box or digital ready TV by 2013. So, what is digital TV and why have it?

Set up your home theatre  

Cut through the sales talk. Watch part 2 of our video series on the basics of home theatre.

25 Aug 2010 | Our expert reveals more of the mistakes that are made setting up home theatre systems.

Setting up a home theatre  

Don't get duped by the sales hype. See part one of our video series on the basics of home theatre.

6 Aug 2010 | Our expert talks you through some of the more common mistakes you could make when setting up your home theatre.

Q-ACOUSTICS-Q-TV2 first look

If you're disappointed with the sound from your TV, this could be a neat solution.

1 Feb 2010 | This audio device attaches to the back of your TV and can fit 81cm-106cm screen sizes.

Sony PlayTV

This add-on device for PlayStation3 owners has its limitations.

3 Dec 2009 | The Sony PlayTV struggles to provide an effective two-in-one games console and personal video recorder machine.

Freeview background

Freeview products deliver HD Digital TV, but so do many other non-Freeview branded products.

19 Oct 2009 | CHOICE looks at Freeview, what it's offering and what it means, as well as what you gain, or lose, when compared to an identical non-Freeview product.

EPGs

What’s an electronic program guide (EPG) and do you need one?

11 Aug 2009 | An electronic program guide is just a TV guide by another name. More than that, it's a useful tool for planning and organising your TV watching.

HD Projectors review and compare

For a real home theatre experience, you can’t match an HD projector.

10 Aug 2009 | High-definition TV screens are all the rage these days and seem to be getting bigger by the month, but if you want a real home theatre experience even the biggest LCD and plasma screens can’t hold a candle to an HD projector.

FutureSwitch quick review

Two energy savers claim to help navigate your path to power salvation.

7 Jul 2009 | These two devices save you reaching behind your audio-visual gear or all the peripherals around your computer to turn off the power switch, in turn saving you money on your energy bill.

Sound bars review and compare

Fewer boxes, easier connections, compromised sound.

24 Mar 2009 | A sound bar is a box with a number of speakers in it. It's designed to sit just below your TV screen, and uses clever technology to approximate some of the effects of having speakers placed around the room.

Television gets energy label

More stars on your new TV mean greater efficiency.

1 Jan 2009 | The federal government mandated that all TVs must have energy ratings by April 2009 and any with a one-star rating or less will be banned from sale after October 2009.

HD set top boxes review and compare

High-definition set-top boxes on test – should you buy one?

1 Dec 2008 | High definition set-top boxes are designed to replace your existing television’s tuner.

Samsung HT-BD review

The Samsung HT-BD2 is the first of a new category: the Blu-ray home theatre system.

17 Jul 2008 | CHOICE tested it alongside several other models that were Blu-ray players only to see how it would rate as a player.

Converging in the lounge room feature

Can all those bits and pieces of electrical gear go into one box?

12 Jun 2008 | In this article we’re looking at the relatively cheap option of using one system to manage sound and video, along with internet and computer gaming throughout your house.

Home theatre projectors review and compare

Digital projectors bring the movies to your lounge room.

3 Jan 2007 | A projector may not be the most suitable display for watching television or playing games as the lamps can be expensive to replace.

Honda

Car security scores

Before you lock in your next car purchase, use these NRMA Insurance security scores to choose a more secure model.

4 Apr 2014 | We've teamed up with NRMA Insurance to present data on which vehicles from leading manufacturers, including Volkswagen, Audi, Hyundai and Holden, have better security.

Car tyres 175-65R15 review and compare  

We test 18 brands of 175/65R15 tyres, suitable for small cars such as the Honda Jazz, Toyota Yaris and Suzuki Swift.

29 Nov 2013 | Our new rolling resistance test evaluates “eco” claims made by some manufacturers.

Lawn trimmer reviews

Lawn trimmer, whipper-snipper, weed-eater, line trimmer - whatever the name, which is best for your backyard?

8 Aug 2013 | We test 42 petrol, electric, and cordless lawn trimmers (AKA line trimmers, weed-eaters, whipper-snippers), ranging from $49 to $409.

Small vehicle repair costs

The results of this low-speed crash test show there are vast differences in repair costs across the range of top selling small vehicles.

28 Nov 2012 | NRMA Insurance put the spotlight on nine top selling small vehicles in Australia to see how their bumpers performed when involved in a collision.

Honda Odyssey first look

This is a good car for a five-person family with luggage, or up to seven people for short-haul runs.

7 Nov 2012 | The Webster family took the Honda Odyssey over a weekend for the morning sports run, domestic duties and a picnic.

Mulcher lawnmower reviews

Mulcher mowers can give you a greener lawn and greener environment.

25 Sep 2012 | In our updated test of 30 mulcher and catcher lawnmowers, we reveal which models keep your lawn looking its best.

Honda CR-Z Sport first look

We take this sporty hybrid car for a spin to see how it performs.

29 Jun 2012 | We find out whether the Honda CR-Z Sport, dubbed Car of the Year 2012 by Wheels magazine, lives up to expectations.

Hybrid cars

Fed up with high petrol prices? A hybrid or electric car might be one answer.

27 Jun 2012 | We test-drove the fuel-efficient petrol, hybrid and electric models currently available in Australia and found there's a lot to like, plus some trade-offs.

Christmas gift guide

We've trawled our test results to bring you a range of great gift ideas.

16 Nov 2011 | From digital cameras to kitchen gadgets, our gift ideas cater to all budgets.

Car reliability survey

Our latest car reliability member survey gives the low down on breakdowns.

12 May 2011 | Advanced technologies used by car manufacturers aim to make your ride as smooth and safe as possible, how do they fare for reliability?

Hoover

Vacuum cleaner reviews  

We test vacuum cleaners at all price points, from $69 to $1599.

24 Feb 2014 | We reveal which newly tested vacuums - including models from Miele, Dyson, and Hoover - are best at picking up dirt and pet hair.

Washing machine reviews  

We’ve tested more than 60 washing machines, including models from Bosch, Electrolux, Fisher & Paykel, LG, Miele, Samsung, Simpson and Westinghouse.

17 Feb 2014 | Find out which washers from all the major brands rate best for dirt removal, rinse performance and water and energy efficiency.

Steam station reviews

You don't have to spend big bucks to get a good steam station.

5 Feb 2014 | Steam stations generate a lot of steam so you can effortlessly iron out the wrinkles in your clothes.

Steam mop reviews  

Steam mops are an effective way to clean your home and many people are opting for these over a mop and bucket.

16 Jan 2014 | Test results for 25 steam mops, including 12 newly tested models, priced from $49 to $349.

Stick vacuum cleaner reviews

We test 19 stick vacuums, ranging in price between $59 and $599.

25 Oct 2013 | These stick vacuums are handy around the home, and most separate into a handheld vac as well.

Expensive vacuum cleaner reviews

We test high-end vacuum cleaners priced from $600 to $1099.

24 Nov 2011 | CHOICE reveals which expensive vacuum cleaners earn their keep, and whether it's necessary to spend up to $1000 on a model.

HopStop

HopStop recall

A structural fault has been detected in a small number of cans, which may result in leaking or discharge of contents.

26 Oct 2011 | HopStop Australia Pty Ltd is recalling HopStop spray control for cane toads, sold from 23rd December 2010 to 21st October 2011.

Hose-reels

Retractable hose reel reviews

We test nine retractable hose reels, ranging in price from $69 to $199.

28 Oct 2011 | CHOICE tests nine retractable hose reels for their ease of use and features.

Hoses

Retractable hose reel reviews

We test nine retractable hose reels, ranging in price from $69 to $199.

28 Oct 2011 | CHOICE tests nine retractable hose reels for their ease of use and features.

Hospital

Health insurance complaints down

The gap between how much a consumer pays in hospital fees and how much their health fund covers is still causing headaches.

9 Apr 2014 | Health insurance industry complaints are down, The State of the Health Funds report finds, but some issues such as out-of-pocket costs, remain.

Health insurance comparisons

Our health insurance reviews are a prescription for painless health cover.

6 Dec 2013 | We review 20 open funds in Australia, with recommendations to suit a variety of people in different life stages.

Surviving hospital: infections

The last thing you need from a hospital stay is to contract a preventable infection.

23 Oct 2013 | Hospital-acquired infections can have serious consequences, including repeat surgery – or even fatalities – and cost Australia $1bn a year. CHOICE checks up on the situation.

What to take to hospital

Baby bag essentials

8 Oct 2013 | Ready, set, labour! What do you need to pack and take for the moment you've been waiting for?

Guide to switching health insurers

Have you been slugged by the recent rise in premiums? It might be time to review your cover, switch and save.

27 Mar 2013 | As health insurance premiums go up, now’s a good time to check that the amount you’re paying is justified by what you’re getting in return.

Health insurance means testing

Pre-pay health insurance and save.

22 Apr 2012 | From July 1, health insurance premiums will increase for high-income earners. Pre-pay your annual premium now and any rebate reductions will only apply in 12 months time.

Hip-replacement-surgery

What you need to know before joint replacement surgery.

9 Mar 2012 | Given the recall of faulty hip replacement devices implanted in thousands of patients, we tell you what you need to know before surgery.

Private health insurance buying guide

Find out how to find a better policy and save.

28 Jan 2009 | Broadly speaking, you can choose hospital cover and extras/ancillary cover. These are available separately or combined.

Private health insurance

Private health insurance premiums are rising and consumers are finding their policies have hidden exclusions and high gaps.

20 Sep 2007 | Premiums have increased 33% since 2001 even though the Government promised stable premiums when it introduced 30% rebate & Lifetime health cover.

Hot cross buns

Hot cross buns review

One a penny, two a penny… we test a range of hot cross buns to find out which brand comes out on top.

6 Apr 2011 | Our tasters gave us their verdict on fruit, fruit-free and choc chip varieties.

hotels

Hotel booking sites and other options

From free accommodation options like couch surfing to the hotel booking sites that get you five stars for fewer dollars, we look at ways for you to find the accommodation that suits your trip.

17 Sep 2013 | Get the most bang from your buck by checking out CHOICE's comparison of hotel booking sites, couch surfing, home rental and more.

Hotel clubs and reward programs

Do hotel reward programs really stack up in your favour?

4 Sep 2012 | We've looked into hotel club memberships, comparing the loyalty programs of a few major players, to see how much bang for your buck you really get.

Hot water

Hot water systems buying guide

Don't wait until your hot water system goes. Review your options and plan your next purchase now.

15 Jul 2013 | By researching the options and choosing the best system for your needs, you could save money and the environment.

Solar hot water systems

Solar hot water is now big business, with dozens of manufacturers and hundreds of retail suppliers all keen to get your custom.

13 Aug 2008 | CHOICE takes the confusion out of purchasing solar and heat pump hot-water systems.

Tefal Quick Cup BR review

If you find yourself playing the waiting game for your favourite beverage, this kettle may be for you.

10 Apr 2008 | These days many of us are time-poor and environment aware, so any help we get to speed up a chore and reduce our energy footprint is welcome. The Tefal Quick Cup claims to help, producing hot water for a tea or coffee in a mere three seconds.

household appliances

Mixer reviews

We test 29 mixers in the CHOICE labs, including models from Breville, Kenwood, KitchenAid and more.

10 Apr 2014 | Fiona Mair, home economist from CHOICE's test kitchen has tested 29 mixers priced from $60 to $999.

Dishwasher reviews  

We take the guesswork out of buying the best dishwasher in your price range.

7 Apr 2014 | More than 50 dishwashers rated on their washing and drying performance, energy and water use, including models from Bosch, Dishlex, LG, Miele and Westinghouse.

Slow cooker buying guide

Forget about a partner in life – come home to a slow cooker!

5 Mar 2014 | Much simpler and more reliable than their human counterparts, slow cookers require very little attention and give great foot massa… wait, too far!

Vacuum cleaner reviews  

We test vacuum cleaners at all price points, from $69 to $1599.

24 Feb 2014 | We reveal which newly tested vacuums - including models from Miele, Dyson, and Hoover - are best at picking up dirt and pet hair.

Product reliability survey

Our 2014 report reveals how our members rate common technology product and appliance brands for reliability.

21 Feb 2014 | Use our brand reliability results to help guide your decision before buying. A bargain isn't a bargain if you're likely to pay a lot for repairs in the long term.

Washing machine reviews  

We’ve tested more than 60 washing machines, including models from Bosch, Electrolux, Fisher & Paykel, LG, Miele, Samsung, Simpson and Westinghouse.

17 Feb 2014 | Find out which washers from all the major brands rate best for dirt removal, rinse performance and water and energy efficiency.

Iron reviews

Are you about to spend too much? Our testers have found buying the most expensive iron is not always a guarantee for wrinkle-free clothing.

5 Feb 2014 | Irons are a less expensive alternative to steam stations, and there are plenty to choose from at varying prices that will get the job done.

Handheld vacuum cleaner reviews

We've tested ten handheld vacs ranging in price from $59 up to $349.

6 Mar 2013 | Handheld vacuum cleaners are handy for cleaning up small messes.

First look Dyson pedestal fan

We take a peek at Dyson's latest bladeless offering.

14 Feb 2012 | Does this sleek pedestal fan outperform traditional models, or is its bladeless technology a lot of spin?

Expensive vacuum cleaner reviews

We test high-end vacuum cleaners priced from $600 to $1099.

24 Nov 2011 | CHOICE reveals which expensive vacuum cleaners earn their keep, and whether it's necessary to spend up to $1000 on a model.

Vacuum cleaners buying guide

Has your vacuum cleaner bitten the dust? Before you buy a new one, check out our quick guide.

6 Jul 2010 | You can’t go past a vacuum cleaner that is light, quiet, easy to manoeuvre, has a long cord and has a neat compact design for easy storage.

Supersteam Oven Quick Review

It steams, bakes and microwaves with surprising efficiency. This newcomer from Sharp gets the thumbs up from CHOICE.

18 Jan 2010 | The Sharp Supersteam combines healthy multi-function cooking with a space-saving design.

Getting the most from product warranties  

Use our tools to insist on your rights when products don’t work as they should. And help us pressure retailers to sign our Fair Warranty Charter.

3 Dec 2009 | You have a legal right to ask your retailer to repair or replace faulty goods – or give you a refund.

Home cool guide

Do you really need an air conditioner?

22 Apr 2009 | A cool home’s important for many Australians, and an air conditioner is the only appliance that can really cool down a hot room effectively — but there are other, ways to keep the heat out of your home in the first place.

iRobot Dirt Dog review

If you’ve got a messy workshop or patio — and plenty of time — the Dirt Dog might be your new best friend.

14 Aug 2008 | We put the Dirt Dog to the test on a workshop floor scattered with sawdust, small nails, screws, nuts and washers.

House-minding

Hotel booking sites and other options

From free accommodation options like couch surfing to the hotel booking sites that get you five stars for fewer dollars, we look at ways for you to find the accommodation that suits your trip.

17 Sep 2013 | Get the most bang from your buck by checking out CHOICE's comparison of hotel booking sites, couch surfing, home rental and more.

House minding agencies

Guide to leaving your home in the hands of a housesitter.

1 Jul 2008 | Ever had that sinking feeling as you leave home to head off on holiday? Will the house be secure? Will the garden survive? Will the pets be safe and will your neighbour remember to feed them?

hoyts

Cinema rip offs

Are we being charged too much at the box office? CHOICE shows you how to get the most bang for your buck on your next trip to the movies.

10 Mar 2011 | With movie ticket and candy bar prices continuing to rise, can a night at the movies be affordable?

HP

Budget laptop reviews  

We test 15 laptop computers that won’t break the bank.

9 Apr 2014 | You don’t have to sacrifice speed when buying a cheap laptop. We test 15 low-cost laptops that provide a good combination of power and features at a reasonable price.

Multifunction printers review

Multifunction printers are convenient and versatile, but which are better value - and better for you?

13 Aug 2013 | We review 82 multifunction printers including inkjet and laser models, both colour and mono, priced from under $50 to over $1000.

Standard printers

We test 26 inkjet, colour and mono laser printers, priced from just $69 up to $1099.

29 Jun 2013 | Find out how printers from Brother, Canon, Dell, Epson, HP and Samsung compare when it comes to print speed, quality and ease of installation.

Technology reliability survey

Just how reliable are your tech devices?

13 Nov 2012 | The CHOICE technology reliability survey reports on what types of problems can go wrong with common computer devices.

HP-Pavilion

Technology reliability survey

Just how reliable are your tech devices?

13 Nov 2012 | The CHOICE technology reliability survey reports on what types of problems can go wrong with common computer devices.

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

All-rounder laptop reviews

Some of these general purpose family laptops offer unprecedented performance and value.

11 Nov 2011 | We test 12 laptops that suit the whole family, with models ranging between $730 and $2100.

HRT

HRT and menopause treatments

Negative publicity about HRT led to a flood of alternatives. Do they work?

20 Jan 2009 | In 2002, a major American study involving hormone replacement therapy was stopped early because researchers were concerned by increased incidence of breast cancer, heart disease and blood clots in participants.

HSBC

Credit card travel insurance reviews

Can you trust the complimentary travel insurance that comes with your credit card? We decipher the small print.

13 Dec 2011 | Many gold and platinum credit cards offer travel insurance, but the cover can vary.

HTC

Smartphone reviews  

Smartphones ranging in price from $139 to $1129 are put through their paces in our lab.

8 Jan 2014 | We review the LG G2 and Google Nexus, as well as the latest models from Apple, Samsung, Sony and Nokia.

Next G mobile phone reviews  

We help you take the guesswork out of buying a next generation mobile phone.

27 Jun 2013 | We reveal how 17 mobile phones available on the Next G 850MHz network perform in the Australian outback.

Mobile World Congress 2012  

We check out some of the latest mobile and wireless technologies at the MWC in Barcelona.

2 Mar 2012 | On day four of the MWC we check out 4G technology, QR codes, and Windows' latest operating system for smartphones.

HTC Sensation XL First Look

The HTC Sensation XL is one of the largest screened phones we've seen to date.

6 Dec 2011 | Would you like a larger screen and headphones with your mobile phone?

Gadget gift guide for Christmas

Gadgets and gizmos always make great presents for the tech-savvy and tech-curious.

23 Nov 2011 | We round up the best technology buys, from tablets, to televisions, to MP3 players, to eBook readers.

Huawei

Consumer Electronics Show 2012  

We head to Las Vegas to check out some of the innovative products shaping consumer technology.

11 Jan 2012 | We take a look at some of the latest gadgets, gizmos and technologies at CES 2012.

Hug-a-Bub

Baby carrier and sling reviews  

Try before you buy when choosing a baby carrier or sling.

4 Jun 2012 | With a baby carrier or sling, you can keep your baby close and secure while leaving your hands free for other tasks.

hulu

Navigating online geo-blocking

Not all retailers have embraced the web as a "borderless world", with geo-blocking forcing Australians to pay more.

5 Mar 2014 | We look at some of the ways you can avoid paying top dollar when shopping online from home.

Humax

PVR reviews   

Take control of your TV viewing. Find the right PVR to suit you needs.

10 Jan 2014 | We review eight of the latest PVRs including models with DVD/Blu-ray drives, priced between $149 and $699.

humidifiers

Dehumidifier reviews

Wet weather dampening your home (and your spirits)? A dehumidifier could help.

12 Jul 2013 | We review 15 dehumidifiers, including a dessicant model, rated from 10L to 30L per day and priced from $188 to $880.

Hunter

Ceiling fan reviews

CHOICE compares 12 ceiling fans priced between $199 and $999 including AC and DC powered models.

27 Aug 2013 | If you don’t want to spend big bucks on air conditioning, ceiling fans offer a cheaper, energy-efficient cooling solution and the latest range also includes DC powered models and one that works off the grid using 12V power.

Husqvarna

Ride on mowers review

Tractor-type ride-on mowers reviewed, and a guide to finding the right ride-on for you.

18 Nov 2013 | Eight ride-on mowers tested, plus a buying guide for researching which mower you need and what to look for.

Lawn trimmer reviews

Lawn trimmer, whipper-snipper, weed-eater, line trimmer - whatever the name, which is best for your backyard?

8 Aug 2013 | We test 42 petrol, electric, and cordless lawn trimmers (AKA line trimmers, weed-eaters, whipper-snippers), ranging from $49 to $409.

Husqvarna Automower 305

This automated lawnmower will save you time and keep your lawn looking its best - but comes with a hefty pricetag.

27 Sep 2011 | Husqvarna's robotic answer to the sheep could be a good option for the time-poor home-owner.

hybrid-cars

Toyota Prius V first look

The Prius V, a people-mover, joins the hybrid market.

7 Oct 2012 | Our tester and a CHOICE family take the new hybrid people-mover for a ride to see if it measures up.

Toyota Prius C first look

A new Prius has entered the hybrid market.

5 Jul 2012 | The latest Prius is designed for city travel and the base model is roughly half the price of the larger Prius i-tech.

Honda CR-Z Sport first look

We take this sporty hybrid car for a spin to see how it performs.

29 Jun 2012 | We find out whether the Honda CR-Z Sport, dubbed Car of the Year 2012 by Wheels magazine, lives up to expectations.

Hybrid cars

Fed up with high petrol prices? A hybrid or electric car might be one answer.

27 Jun 2012 | We test-drove the fuel-efficient petrol, hybrid and electric models currently available in Australia and found there's a lot to like, plus some trade-offs.

Hyundai

Car security scores

Before you lock in your next car purchase, use these NRMA Insurance security scores to choose a more secure model.

4 Apr 2014 | We've teamed up with NRMA Insurance to present data on which vehicles from leading manufacturers, including Volkswagen, Audi, Hyundai and Holden, have better security.

Small vehicle repair costs

The results of this low-speed crash test show there are vast differences in repair costs across the range of top selling small vehicles.

28 Nov 2012 | NRMA Insurance put the spotlight on nine top selling small vehicles in Australia to see how their bumpers performed when involved in a collision.

Hyundai iMax first look

The Radosavics found the Hyundai iMax roomy and manageable over a trip to the Central Coast.

12 Nov 2012 | The Hyundai iMax is an eight-person carrier and one of the larger people-movers on the Australian market that we’ve looked at.

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