It is seldom that I see a press release for a product that I decide I quite simply need. OK, that's a lie, it happens pretty much every day, but I digress. What I mean to say is that Sony is currently today's title holder for "stuff I really want but can't justify buying" award. The product in question being an all-in-one home theatre kit dubbed the HTP-BD2RSF. Trust me, the actual kit sounds significantly better that its name.
So, in the (quite large) package you'll find an S300 Blu-ray player (as unveiled last week), four tower speakers and a subwoofer for 1000W of 5.1 surround sound with automatic calibration and such features as wireless audio streaming from a PC. The system will also let you connect an MP3 player or stream via Bluetooth from a mobile phone if you should be so inclined and Sony claims that the onboard processing should help add in the detail lost by compressing the music onto your device, although we'll believe that when we hear it.
Connectivity-wise there are three HDMI inputs (and one output) so you can connect the Blu-ray player, an HD DVD player and Sky HD Box and use the surround speaker setup to full effect, although Sony would probably rather you lost the HD DVD. As is becoming pretty standard these days there is a microphone included to allow auto-calibration of the speakers once positioned and while true audiophiles probably scorn upon such systems, for most people it should be sufficient and a great improvement over the usual "plug it in and have done" philosophy.
Of course Sony would have you buy one of its HDTVs as well and to that effect if you have a complete setup you'll get the benefit of controlling everything from a single remote, though of course just about every manufacturer going offers similar functionality.
The only thing Sony hasn't been able to provide thus far is a price, which is what this product will sink or swim on, this should be made clear nearer to the November release. And if you still aren't sold, then perhaps the promise of a free copy of the Spider-man trilogy on Blu-ray will sway you?