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

By Danny Phillips



Our Score:


The key factor in this kick-ass audio performance is the monstrous bass output from the excellent sub, which has enough muscle and presence to fill the room but not at the expense of control or cohesion. The scene early in the movie when Arnie's team raids a jungle base is packed with OTT explosions, and the F200 delivers them with staggering force and intensity. Once or twice it sounded a little flabby but as 2.1 system subs go, it's the real deal.

This is backed up by a polished performance from the main speakers, which deliver midrange and top-end frequencies with surprising transparency. Speech sounds authentic, with Arnie's classic one-liners ("Stick around") losing none of their comical impact during raucous action scenes, while the rasping shots from Arnie's rifle are delivered with a visceral punch. The movie's score also comes alive with superb reproduction of the pulsating jungle drums and piercing brass stabs.

Inevitably, the lack of rear channels makes the Predator track sound only half as enthralling as it would be on a decent 5.1 system, and despite the best efforts of S-Force Front Surround there's very little width to the soundstage. If you want to be enveloped by sound when watching a movie, then we suggest making room for a 5.1 system.

However, if you're looking for a system that doubles up nicely as a hi-fi, the F200 could be just the ticket. It handled a range of CDs with aplomb, from the floaty jazz-pop of Amy Winehouse's Frank to the clanging guitars of Coldplay's Viva La Vida, and when pushed hard it showed no signs of clipping or distortion.

The DAV-F200 also produces top-drawer pictures, as demonstrated by Star Wars: Episode III's crisp transfer. The abundant CG detail is sharply reproduced and steady, while colours are strongly saturated but look natural at all times. The lack of upscaling artefacts demonstrates the quality of the system's video processing, which produces richly textured picture quality on a 1080p TV.


Most people will probably snap up the DAV-F200 purely on the basis of its strikingly handsome looks, but those who care equally about AV quality can rest assured that it's much more than just a pretty face. The picture and sound quality is of the highest order, packing a punch when it comes to movie playback, and there are enough features on board to keep technophiles happy for years to come. It's no match for a proper 5.1-channel system but those seeking a space-saving solution will find the DAV-F200 to be an excellent alternative - and at under £300 online it's surprisingly affordable to boot.

Overall Score


Scores In Detail

  • Performance 9
  • Value 8
  • Features 8


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).


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.


May 6, 2010, 4:59 pm


You asked for sub-woofer measure Amit.

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


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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