They might make audiophiles wince, but all-in-one systems provide the perfect way for buyers on tight budgets to bring a full home cinema system into their home for a fraction of the price of separates. And when you buy a Samsung system, you’re guaranteed to get a plethora of cutting-edge features into the bargain. The 5.1-channel HT-D5500 is no exception, boasting a tantalising spec sheet (including 3D Blu-ray support) and a stylish design that’ll bring a touch of hi-tech pizzazz into your living room.
When choosing an all-in-one system, one of the main considerations is the size of the supplied speakers. Where the HT-D6750W was designed for larger rooms with its four huge tallboy towers, this system comes with a set of five compact bookshelf satellites and subwoofer, all of which are considerably easier to accommodate on and around your existing furniture.
The satellites for the front channels measure a diddy 90(w) x 207.5(h) x 68.5(d)mm, while the rear pair is slightly shorter at 141.5mm high and the sub stands just 350mm tall. Not only are they compact, they are also easy on the eye – the gloss black finish so synonymous with Samsung’s home cinema kit is again used to delightful effect, and their boxy shape works well. Unusually, there are no table-top stands, you just plonk them down as they are. You also get a 360mm-wide centre speaker styled identically to the other satellites.
As for the Blu-ray player/receiver unit, the design is the same as that of the HT-D6750W. It’s an all-black affair with fairly slim dimensions (60mm high), but it’s the little embellishments that really catch the eye. The display panel at the front features built-in touch sensitive controls and a neatly integrated disc slot. On the right are touch-sensitive volume controls placed on a little hump, with a USB port and setup mic input under the flap below. All-in-all, this is a great-looking system.
It’s also well-stocked on the connections front. Being a 3D-capable system, the HDMI output is specified as v1.4, but even more welcome are the two HDMI inputs, which allow you to channel other AV kit through the system and listen to them in surround sound if you like.
The rear panel is packed with other intriguing sockets – there’s a slot for Samsung’s transmitter card, which means this system supports ‘wireless’ rear speakers, but you’ll need to buy the optional £100 kit (the SWA-5000, which is supplied with the HT-D6750W). There’s an interface for the supplied iPod cradle – another example of Samsung’s generosity – plus optical digital and analogue stereo audio inputs. On the networking front, there’s no built-in Wi-Fi like the HT-D6750W but there is a second USB port on the back that lets you connect Samsung’s optional wireless LAN dongle, as well as an Ethernet port for those who’d rather go down the wired route.