Sony looks to be going for an all-out blitzkrieg on the Blu-ray home cinema system market with a slew of new multi-channel systems based around its Blu-ray players hitting. Almost as if to remind Toshiba it has a fair bit catching up to do if it does join the BDA (or should that be when, given the application is almost certain to be approved?).
At the top end, the BDV-E300 and BDV-E800W come with compact satellite speakers or floorstanding speakers respectively and both offer the same 1000W of power, with virtual 7.1-channel surround. The E300 can be upgraded with wireless rear speakers, which the E800 has as standard and should it be desired both can be upgraded with a further two rear channel speakers, for a full 7.1-channel set-up - although as most installations won't be in aircraft hangars, the benefits will be limited.
That the systems can cope with Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master audio decoding, 1080p 24hz video and BD Live playback should shock no-one. A media port enables playback of content from iPods, Walkman players, mobile phones and Bluetooth capable devices.
Stepping down a level Sony has the 350W, 2.1-channel BDV-Z7 - which will also produce a virtual 5.1-channel effect. Aside from the lessened speaker count, the feature set is little different from the E300 and E800W, with 1080p 24hz and BD Live playback still present alongside HD audio codec decoding.
Sony is also introducing four systems using its BDP-S360 Blu-ray player: the 2.1-channel BDV-360FS, 5.1-channel BDV-360IS (using Sony's ‘golfball' speakers), the wireless-ready HTP-BD36SS and last up, using floorstanding speakers, the HTP-BD36SF.
No pricing or specific release dates as yet.
UK-centric details are in, we'll be getting the BDV-E300, BDV-Z7, HT-FS360 and HT-SS100. Anyone after the other systems will have to book a holiday, or find an importer.