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Sony Blu-ray home cinema systems unveiled

Latest Sony systems have wireless rear speakers

Sony HTP-BD36SF Blu-ray home cinema system

Sony has launched two Blu-ray home cinema systems – the BDV-E300 7.1 surround sound system, and the BDV-Z7 that offers a more compact 2.1-channel system.

Which? has reviews of the best Blu-ray players from Panasonic, LG, Samsung and Sony, and an expert guide to .

The new Sony BDV-E300 all-in-one system offers full 1080p HD video, 1080p DVD upscaling, Virtual 7.1-channel sound and wireless rear speakers.

The BDV-E300 is claimed to have a 1000W power output, and features BD-Live for added content and features.

Optional Sony wireless speakers

The Sony BDV-E300 uses five compact satellite speakers for the main channels and a powerful subwoofer, and offers wireless operation of the rear speakers with the addition of the WAHT-SA1 optional amplifier. The system also features Sony’s Bravia Sync which lets you control a Sony home entertainment system with one remote control handset. 

There are also some useful features in terms of connectivity, as Digital Media Ports allow the connection of iPods, Sony Walkman MP3 players, mobile phones and Bluetooth stereo devices so that portable music and video can be streamed through the system to a TV.

Sony BDV-Z7 – compact 2.1-channel surround sound speaker system

Sony BDV-Z7 Blu-ray home cinema system

Sony BDV-Z7 Blu-ray home cinema system

At the entry-level end of the range, the Sony BDV-Z7 offers many of the features of its larger siblings, but in a compact, 2.1-channel speaker system. that Sony claims can give a 350W virtual 5.1 surround sound experience in smaller rooms using ‘S-Force Front Surround technology’. 

Sony BDP-S360 Blu-ray Disc upgrade kits

Sony has also released four other home cinema upgrade kits based around the Sony BDP-S360 Blu-ray disc player. Which? has reviewed its predecessor, the Sony BDP-S350. All four systems offer the full range of features found in the ‘all-in-one’ systems above, and have three HDMI inputs giving extra flexibility for connecting extra AV sources and speaker systems.

  • Sony HT-FS360 – a 400W 2.1-channel system
  • Sony HT-IS100 – has five ‘golfball-sized’ speakers
  • Sony HT-SS100– a 1000W wireless-ready system with compact satellite speakers
  • Sony HT-SS360 – similar to the HT-SS100 but with a slimmer design and is wireless-ready for cable-free operation of the rear speakers with an optional amplifier.

Which? tech expert Al Warman said: ‘When consumers have bought a large LCD or plasma TV, the next thing that many want is to watch big-screen film action. That’s where the next generation of Blu-ray home cinema systems come in.

‘Wireless speakers mean that surround sound systems have less impact on the living room, and the latest Blu-ray players can provide a really immersive HD film-watching experience.’

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