Sony DAV-F200 Home Cinema System - Sony DAV-F200

By Danny Phillips

Reviewed:

Summary

Our Score:

8

User Score:

The DAV-F200 comes equipped with the obligatory virtual surround mode, S-Force Front Surround, while inside the powered subwoofer the S-Master digital amplifier generates a mighty 405W of audio power (135W per channel). Other audio features include a range of decoding modes, including 2ch Stereo, Wide Stage, and Portable Audio which enhances the sound when playing back MP3s via USB or DMPORT.

It's also pleasing to see that the DAV-F200 plays DivX files from DVD or CD, and supplies a registration code for video-on-demand content bought online. And, if the idea of having more than one remote chills you to your very core, then you'll be thrilled to hear that BRAVIA Sync lets you control a Sony TV and this system using one remote.

With so few components involved, setting up the system is a piece of cake. The main unit connects to the subwoofer using a single cable, while the speakers also connect to sturdy plug terminals on the underside of the sub. The main unit also features a useful cable tidy system to maintain the minimal aesthetic.

Power up the unit and you're greeted by a stylish Sony splashscreen. Hit Display and it presents a choice of Quick and Custom setup menus, the former detailing only the key tweaks while the latter lets you configure the whole shebang. You can set the HDMI resolution to Auto (which will select 1080p output if your TV supports it) or force it to output in 1080i, 720p or 576p, and unusually you can select whether JPEGs are displayed in SD or HD. With only three speakers to worry about, the audio setup options are sparse, only allowing you to set the levels of each speaker from -6dB up to +6dB, but the fact that you can't set them as the disc is playing means there's an element of guesswork involved.

On the whole the unit's operating system is superb - speedy, logically laid out and easy on the eye. The remote is also intelligently designed, although it's on the large side and crammed with buttons, plus the multiple ‘Menu' keys get a little misleading when trying to locate the setup screen.

As for its audio performance, Sony says that the DAV-F200 has been tuned by the same team behind its high-end AV receivers, so we were expecting great things from this compact system, and it does not disappoint. To test its mettle, we slipped the quintessential Arnie action-fest Predator into the disc slot, selected the awesome DTS track and were immediately pinned in our seat by the sheer power produced by the impressive S-Master amp.

GL7

June 24, 2008, 5:02 pm

HD format war is over. I liked this DAV system from the first sight, but lucks Blu-ray support. Slow reaction/respond from SONY...

Danny P

June 25, 2008, 6:44 pm

Yes but there's a still a huge market for DVD players and systems - Blu-ray is miniscule in comparison. Most people have big DVD collections and the F200's 1080p upscaling helps people make the most of them. I imagine Sony will continue making DVD systems for years to come. But in any case, if you want a Blu-ray system, then Sony has launched one (the HTP-BD2RSF).

Amit

June 26, 2008, 12:01 am

What are the actual dimensions of the sub-woofer? I cant find these details anywhere...

Andrew 17

July 18, 2009, 3:17 pm

After a bit of research and your review, I purchased the Sony DAVF200. No buyers' remorse here. I replaced my space hogging, 5.1 LG LH-W760IA, which just turned three years old. What really sold me on the Sony was the the S-Master Digital Amplifier. A couple of years ago I bought a Sony CMT-CPZ2 micro system stereo powered by the S-Master@2X75 watts, simply excellent sound. The DAVF200@405 watts is even better. Playing A DVD, Listening to FM or a CD is pleasing both to the eye and ear. The LG system was good, but not in any way better, in playing a DVD, But it's purported 700 watts, couldn't hold a candle to the Sony DAVF200 when it came to listening to a CD, FM radio or The television. There is simply no comparison to the depth and clarity of sound.





No, I no longer have 5.1 sounds behind my head(only a hint of 5.1), but the trade off, at least for me, is totally in my favour. Watching a DVD is crystal clear, with great sound and listening to a CD or FM is once again enjoyable.





Negligible drawbacks I had to adjust to, were adjusting my TV bank to compensate for the vertical height of the main panel and the CD,DVD ejector being on the right side of the unit. Also, I gave up trying to gather in the wires and cable in the back of the unit and securing them with the ties and bracket.





All in all, an incredibly good system at an affordable price. through the years I've found that rarely can you go wrong with Sony products. No, I don't work for them. In apology to LG, while my LG 5.1 looked good but performed poorly, my LG 42" LCD Looks good and performs wonderfully.





In closing, I'd like to thank you folks, at Trusted Reviews for helping me, in making a sensible and non-regrettable purchase.

Satko

May 6, 2010, 4:59 pm

Hi.


You asked for sub-woofer measure Amit.


They are 200 x 640 x 640 mm (aproks.).

sime5555

August 25, 2010, 1:23 am

I see that everyone is delighted with the system; from my experience it significantly lacks in power (bas especially) and sound details. I have to say that after reading your opinions I am beginning to think mine should be taken to the dealer to see if everything is OK with it.

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