Customer Review

15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Small Sound, 21 May 2012
This review is from: Sony BDVE190 300W 3D Blu-ray Home Cinema System (Old model) (Electronics)
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I'm fussy when it comes to all things audio as I've probably mentioned in my previous reviews but, having not long ago purchased a swanky new 50" plasma TV, it was with great joy I got to review a home cinema system to go with it.

The Sony BDVE190 duly arrived is a deceptively small box and I underwent the process of unpacking everything and assembling the required stuff to get the kit up and running. It was during this process that I noticed, like the other reviewer, that the build quality on some of the speakers included here is a little flimsy. Not a major criticism, and nothing that should really concern the average user. I suppose Sony have erred on the side of sleek and light, but I like my sound kit to be a little more substantial, as that usually means it's got more grunt.

Attaching the cables to the right places on the sleek and sloping Blu-Ray/cinema unit was made much easier by some clever Sony colour coding although I quickly became frustrated again when I realised how short the cables to the rear speakers are, as the other reviewer has again mentioned. I'm not sure who designs these systems but I can only presume it is someone with a front room the size of a small bathroom. I'm sure the cables can be replaced, and if you're serious about sound you'd probably do that anyway, but for someone with a large room who wants out of the box usage I'd proceed with a little caution.

Importantly, the system once connected (and you've you've navigated the overly-feature-filled remote) does sound good. There's plenty of bass, but it is not overpowering, and dialogue is crisp and clear with no hisses or pops. The BDVE190 handles music well too although again, if you've a large room you probably want a system with much more presence and oomph. For the average bedroom or living room though, this does more than enough. The unit also has several audio modes which replicate the listening experience in a stadium, concert hall and that sort of thing and these were good to play about with, although in the most part just distracting.

The included blu-ray player is of the quality you'd expect from Sony. It upscales normal DVDs very well and handles Blu-ray and 3D films with ease, producing a clear and sharp picture.

The BDVE190 is internet ready. Whilst you can't connect wirelessly unless you buy a separate dongle, if you connect a standard network cable to the back of the unit you can use BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Lovefilm and a few other services and apps that I didn't really play about with too much. The internet features work well and if you don't have a smart TV, this is certainly the next best thing.

Finally, the BDVE190 has a built in FM radio with 20 presets. With the included antenna I picked up the usual stations easily and again, the audio quality was good. Not altogether convinced that an FM tuner is a big plus for this unit, but if you wish to use it, it's nice to know that it works well.

All in all then, this is a really, really good out of the box solution for those that want quality 5.1 sound in a small to medium sized room without too much hassle of shopping around and without too much expense. It sounds good, has plenty of features and is easy enough to connect together.

On the down side though, the slightly cheaply constructed speakers and the lack of real power and grunt to fill large rooms might mean serious 5.1 aficionados with big tv rooms looks elsewhere.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 23 May 2012 08:55:48 BDT
Cartimand says:
I see we have similar feelings about this home cinema system. I'm still extremely pleased with it, but can't help feeling that with a tiny bit more effort, Sony could have made it a truly excellent system.

In reply to an earlier post on 23 May 2012 10:08:52 BDT
I agree totally. Although they'd probably say that the system is only designed for small rooms anyway. But, if that is the case, they should be clearer about it.

I agree with you about the user interface too. Must try harder Sony!
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