I got 3 or 4 sets of Aldi's for giving away, but still have 2 sets kicking around. All chisels were badly warped, all of them very soft, folding over in denser pine with 30 degrees primary bevels. I just ground some of them into skew chisels and demoted others to glue scrapers and can openers. These sets were already 9.99$ for the set of four. They have disappeared not long after I've bought them, so maybe they were better made a few years before I bought mine.
HF's are definitely a few steps above. My 1/4" has a very slight taper, but even without it makes a decent mortiser. At this width a mortise is rarely over 9/8" deep, so it's still manageable. Warping wasn't anywhere close to Aldis, I was able to straighten 1/4" on a coarse stone in maybe 20 mins. I really like how you ground yours, and will probably try doing it too one day, just have to wrap up the longest build of my life. There's tons of fun in taking quite a rough tool and refine it into something that matches a premium tool both in terms of function and visually. You have mentioned that making a decent chisel isn't expensive at all, so every time I wonder why nobody does that? Given that a guy in a garage makes it a very pleasant and nice tool in just 45 extra minutes, sure it should cost almost nothing in industrial settings. Yet mid-range chisels almost don't exist.
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