Yamaha's home theaters and soundbars have always been excellent—even before you consider that they offer great value for the money. The newly refreshed $850 YHT-897 home theater in a box might make it one of the best deals out there right now. »
Surround sound is awesome, but how many people actually use it? Is it true surround sound or virtual surround sound? Is the system hooked up correctly? Let's find out. »
Samsung's HT-BD8200 soundbar does the standard virtual-5.1-channel sound jig just fine—the kicker is that it plays Blu-ray discs, streams Netflix/Padora, and has USB- in and an iPod dock, with optional wi-fi. That's a lotta sources. »
There aren't a whole lot of HTIB units that come with wireless surround speakers, but JVC's TH-G51 has 5.1-channel sound, a progressive DVD player, HDMI repeater, and Dolby Digital/DTS decoding. Lands June for $430. »
Onkyo's best new entry level HTiB setup has a 7.1 surround is notable for having room correction tech. I'm pretty sure its rare to find a low end system that can adjust gain and delay on all channels to calibrate itself to a room's acoustics. The receiver included is the DTS/Dolby capable HT-R560, with 3 HDMI inputs,… »
If Sony exists for anything, it's synergy, so its latest quickie home theaters are made to match its Blu-ray players—you'll notice only one of this fourfer has an upscaling DVD player—you've gotta bring the vid (Blu-ray) goods (Blu-ray) yourself. The $400 5.1 HT-SS2300 is the top audio-only, which pumps out 1000W and… »
The Pitch: The 2.1-channel HT-X710 and 5.1-channel HT-X715 Home Theater in a Box (HTIB) units have 5.8GHz wireless speakers, 1080p upconversion, and a design that looks like polished obsidian rocks. Available in May 2008.
The Catch: There's Bluetooth as well, in case you want to stream audio from your Bluetooth… »
The Pitch: Samsung's HT-BD2 offers 7.1 speakers, 1,100 watts, HDMi 1.3, 1080p DVD upconversion, 1080p Blu-ray playback, an Ethernet port, and wireless rear satellite speakers for optimal cord invisibility.
The Catch: Although getting Blu-ray in a box with speakers that are "optimized" for the system is good, you may… »
Although this Home Theater in a Box (HTiB) doesn't have as many features as Onkyo's DTX-8.8, it still gives you an all-in-one solution for your entertainment needs in a relatively affordable package—and it's Onkyo's top of the line HTiB. The receiver in the HT-SP908 and HT-SP904 models has 7.1-channel audio, two HDMI… »
Circuit City has a decent Sony SA-FT3H 5.1-channel surround sound system for $180, which is at least $70 cheaper than most other places. The speakers are less than 1.3 inches deep and include a 150-watt subwoofer. Not a bad solution for the person with a minimalist style or not a lot of room. »
It's not the first home theater in a box to pack HDMI outputs, but Onkyo's top-of-the-line HT-SR800 is still an impressive system for anyone looking for an all-in-one package. Announced alongside today's other surprises, the SR800 cranks out 110 watts per channel and can process Dolby Digital EX, DTS-ES, and DTS 96/24. »
Sure, you can be a regular Joe and set up a couch and chairs around a crappy projection TV with a tiny grill on the deck, but who wants to look like a loser? If you really want to impress your friends and family, simply follow some steps and become the Unofficial Lord of the Party. The latest technology and gadgets… »
Pioneer is adding a few HTIBs (home theatre in a box) to their repertoire of lower-end home theatre equipment. The HTZ-370DV, HTS-570 and HTP2900 (pictured above) are 5.1 surround systems that look pretty and sound prettier. The HTZ-370 has 360 watts of power, includes a USB port and will be available in July for… »
So now that you've taken advantage of all those Black Friday specials and scored a new flat-panel TV, it's time to pair it with some decent speakers. Stepping up to the plate is JVC's Sophisti line, a 3.1 system that cuts back on wires and looks good doing it. All three models in the Sophisti range (DD-8, DD-3, DD-1)… »