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Reviewed by 2 customers
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(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)
Excellent Sound and works great with other Sony gear
from Libertyville, IL
Comments about Sony Black Hi-Res 7.1 Sound Bar With Wireless Subwoofer Package:
Love the sound coming from this product. Can hear all of the minute treble and bass and all of the voices are clear, even during the action sequences. Wireless subwoofer connects up reliably. Attempted to use the more "encrypted" connection from sound bar to sub woofer, but that did not work as well as the normal way. Have been watching this now for weeks, really love the sound for sports, movies, and Netflix. Using HDMI and Digital Optical connections, both sound great, cannot tell difference.
Service and delivery comments:
was able to set this up myself. has bluetooth and internet capability, but I am not using it at this time.
Bottom Line Yes, I would recommend this to a friend
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(8 of 9 customers found this review helpful)
Excellent Product with some integration issues
from Germantown, MD 20876, USA
I bought this soundbar for TV programming/movies as well as music. As I listen to somewhat conservative genres of music such as classical, adult contemporary, jazz, and K-Pop, I wanted a speaker system suited for music with prominent vocals, i.e., with an acceptable ability to reproduce midrange and low midrange sounds. Most all-in-one systems Iâ€™ve tried have overpowering bass and treble, with thinnish sounding midrange. The HT-ST9 has decent midrange, especially considering its physical size, and its treble and bass are prominent without being overbearing. Sound is very natural as a result. I tested the system with various vocalists (Sarah Bareilles, Selena, Bigbang, Lee Seonhui) and a classical song (Moonlight Sonata) at low/mid volume, and found the sound pleasing, with just a bit more thinness of midrange than I prefer. All in all, it sounds nice, but the mids do lack the depth and warmth I experienced with larger 6â€� freestanding speakers hooked to a conventional receiver. However, living in an apartment I need a compact system, and the HT-ST9 is incredibly compact and good sounding for its size. I found the â€œStandardâ€� sound field gave best results with music. The â€œMusicâ€� mode emphasizes bass too much for my taste, and the â€œClear Audio+â€� sounded a tad artificial to me. The â€œMusic Arenaâ€� mode provides a realistic echo which is fun to use. I did my tests using iTunes 256kbps AAC files playing through an Apple TV connected via HDMI to the HT-ST9. Dialogue of TV shows is incredibly clear, much more so than with the 5.1ch HTIB I replaced with the HT-ST9. The various â€œVoiceâ€� modes do make dialogue even more distinct, helpful for those with hearing difficulties. I particularly like the Night feature, which eliminates most of the deep bass and also compresses the dynamic range, so I can watch shows at night without waking others. The â€œClear Audio+â€� mode and â€œMovieâ€� mode gave good results. The user manual fails to clearly distinguish between the â€œClear Audio+â€� and â€œStandardâ€� sound settings. The remote allows one-button access to the â€œClear Audio+â€� and â€œFootballâ€� sound modes. As I rarely watch football, Iâ€™d rather Sony allowed the user to customize the buttons to access the userâ€™s two favorite sound settings (e.g., Clear Audio+ and Movie). The user interface is very good. In addition to the small digital screen on the soundbar, thereâ€™s an on-screen GUI that enables easy selection of inputs and settings. Being able to choose which inputs are â€œskippedâ€� when cycling through them via the Input button on the remote is a nice touch. It would be nice if they allowed one to customize names of the HDMI inputs to make them more meaningful. Integration with other AV gear is lacking. When turning on the Soundbar, a Sony BDP-S6500 Blu-Ray player connected to the HDMI-2 input will power up. Unfortunately, when shutting off the Soundbar, the Blu-Ray fails to shut off. Considering both are Sonyâ€™s latest and top of the line models, this is unacceptable and will hopefully be fixed via a firmware update. Similarly, when I turn on my Panasonic TC-L47E50 TV (connected to the HT-ST9â€™s HDMI-1 input), the ST9 turns on as expected. But, when I turn off the TV, the ST9 goes to standby, then after a moment the TV turns back on again, causing the ST9 to also turn on again. This is an issue because the HT-ST9 remote cannot control non Sony TVs. Basic on/off control over HDMI should be compatible with major 3rd party brands of AV equipment, not to mention with Sony branded equipment. Another oddity: The HT-ST9â€™s remote controlâ€™s arrow and play/stop buttons cannot control my Sony Blu-Ray, which was an unexpected deficiency; Iâ€™d specifically purchased the Sony brand Blu-Ray player because I assumed I could operate it and the soundbar with a single remote control. I therefore need to use a Panasonic remote to turn on/off the TV, the Sony HT-ST9 remote to control the volume and select inputs, and the Sony BDP-S6500 remote to start/stop the DVD player. I expected better integration from such an expensive flagship soundbar. Bluetooth works fairly well, although I had to repeatedly re-connect (but not re-pair) my smartphone (iPhone 5S, iOS 8.4) after switching the HT-ST9 back and forth between different inputs while the phone was streaming music to the â€œBTâ€� input. Playing the same songs back to back through Bluetooth (iPhone) and HDMI (Apple TV), it was clear that the Bluetooth audio quality was inferior. Album art does not display when playing via Bluetooth. Further, non-English characters in song titles (e.g., Korean or Japanese) will not display on the TV screen when streaming. Sadly, the HT-ST9 does not support Appleâ€™s Airplay, so it is not possible to stream video from an iPhone to a TV connected to the soundbar; of course, if one has an AppleTV, video can be streamed to it. The USB port is incompatible with my iPhone, so I was unable to try it out. Itâ€™s limited to reading songs off of USB sticks. I have not tested the surround sound capabilities of the unit. I do note that it does not have support for external rear speakers, which is a shame considering it can transmit via Bluetooth (to headphones). Itâ€™d be nice if they added the ability to pair with two Bluetooth speakers placed behind the listener, enabling transmission of rear channel audio to such speakers for more realistic surround sound. On the bright side, the materials and build quality are superb - on par with Sonyâ€™s ES line. The soundbar has a piano-black metal top panel with an embossed Sony logo, and comes with a removable metal grill that affixes to rubber vibration damping fasteners. Inspection of the grill reveals that its subcomponents are held together with screws, as opposed to plastic snaps. The LED display is attractive and legible and has several brightness levels. The subwoofer features the same level of quality, with a piano-black metal top panel, metal front grill, and closely spaced screws securing a sturdy metal rear panel. The system is truly beautiful to look at. Also, the remote control, despite its faults, is of better quality than most others. The buttons click nicely, giving haptic feedback, and are laid out well. For those curious how the HT-ST9 compares to the much cheaper HT-CT780: I bought the CT780 and returned because I didnâ€™t like how music sounded with it. The 780 did an excellent job for TV viewing and basic music use. However, vocals lacked richness - it sounded no better than the HTIB Iâ€™d had previously. Other differences between the two: HT-ST9â€™s speakers are about a half cm larger in diameter. Sound quality is much better. HT-CT780 has plastic cabinet with fabric grill; itâ€™s not bad looking, though. HT-ST9 has 7.1 channel surround sound; the HT-CT780 is a 2.1 channel unit. HT-ST9 remote control is far better - buttons click and there are more media control buttons HT-ST9 allows optional skipping of certain inputs when cycling through them with the â€œInputâ€� button HT-ST9 has on-screen GUI HT-CT780 has adjustable â€œbassâ€� and â€œtrebleâ€� settings; HT-ST9 lacks these. HT-ST9â€™s subwoofer has a passive radiator; the subâ€™s driver is a bit larger, too
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