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Panasonic SC-HTB20
Philips HTL5120
Sony BDV-E3100
Panasonic SC-HTB550
Panasonic SC-BTT195
Panasonic SC-HTB20 home theater soundbar system
Philips HTL5120 Soundbar Speaker
Sony BDV-E3100 5.1 Channel 3D Blu-ray Disc Home Theater
Panasonic SC-HTB550 Theater System
Panasonic SC-BTT195 Theater System
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ReviewGist
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Release Date
May 2012
May 2013
Feb 2013
Apr 2012
Mar 2012
Surround Sound
Dolby Digital, Dolby Pro Logic II, DTS
Dolby Digital, DTS Digital Surround
Dolby Digital, DTS, Dolby TrueHD
Dolby Digital, DTS decoder, Dolby Pro Logic II
Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Pro Logic II, DTS-HD Master Audio Essential, DTS-HD High Resolution Audio, 3D Cinema Surround
Main Speakers Power Output
240.0 Watts
1000.0 Watts
240.0 Watts
850.0 Watts
Number Of Speakers
1 Sound bar and Subwoofer
5 Speakers and Subwoofer
5 Speakers and Subwoofer
2 Speakers and Subwoofer
5 Speakers and Subwoofer
Playable File Formats
MP3
MP3, JPEG, AVCHD
MP3
MP3, JPEG, WMA, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, XviD
Front Speaker
1 Way
2 Way
2 Way
Included Components
Subwoofer, Remote Control
Remote Control, RM-ADP089 HDMI Cable, FM Antenna(Pig tail/T type), Batteries
Speakers, Subwoofer, Remote Control
Speakers, Blu-ray Player, Subwoofer, Remote Control
Remote Control
Infrared
Yes
Infrared
Yes
Subwoofer Power Output
110.0 Watts
250.0 Watts
120.0 Watts
150.0 Watts
Use
Music
Music
Music, Movies
Music
Music, Movies

  • The Panasonic SC-HTB20 is a neat package and the flexibility of its design - it can be used either as a soundbar or traditional 2.1 system - helps broaden its appeal. It's also a good sonic performer for the price, but we can't help feeling it would have been easier to use if Panasonic had kited it out with a proper screen.


  • I must admit, I didn't have high hopes for Panasonic's new roughly $200 HTB20 soundbar system. That was my mistake. For what it is, the HTB20 is quite good. As a $200 upgrade to any HDTV purchase, the HTB20 doesn't disappoint and is worth every penny. I have a dedicated home theater, and yet I have kept the HTB20 hooked up just for casual viewing or listening when I don't want to fire up all the equipment or go through all the pageantry required for big-time movie watching.


  • The Philips HTL5120 is up against some stiff competition in the soundbar sector but stands head and shoulders above similarly-priced rivals thanks largely to its superb sound quality. It demonstrates scale, refinement and low-frequency composure beyond its price tag, making for a hugely satisfying listen. Throw in superb build quality, gorgeous looks, built-in Bluetooth and plentiful connections, and the HTL5120 cements its place as one of the best soundbars in its class.


  • Spend some time in the HTL5120's company and you'll soon realise that it's one of the best soundbars in its class. It reaches levels of refinement and smoothness beyond what you'd expect from a £250 soundbar, but backs it up with power and punch when needed - all of which makes for a thrilling listen, even within the limitations of a stereo soundbar. Couple that with superb build quality, a clever-yet-classy design, plentiful connections and built-in Bluetooth and you have yourself a real bargain.


  • The SC-HTB550 is a major step up from last year's SC-HTB520, not just in the flexibility of its design, but also in the array of connections on offer. Changing some of the more in-depth settings can be a bit obtuse, but most of the main features are still easy to use. And when it comes to delivering good bass effects and clean, clear dialogue, it's up with the best soundbars we've tested. As a result, if you're looking for a modestly priced soundbar or 2.1 system, we think it's a good option.


  • A symphony in black plastic, the Panasonic SC-HTB550 confounds expectations. The system, which comprises a wireless subwoofer, 95cm soundbar and dedicated audio processor, looks decidedly utilitarian yet it sounds like a mini multiplex.

    Two HDMI inputs mean you can hook up both games console/disc player plus a set top box, and system is Bluetooth compatible too. Movie soundtracks are delivered with authority and the system's virtual 3D sound processing does a terrific job spreading audio far and wide.


  • The Pansonic SC-BTT195 is an inexpensive, easy way to get a 5.1-channel surround sound experience and Blu-ray player in one box, but it's not the most impressive-sounding home theater system.


  • Given its $399 suggested retail price, the SC-BTT195 offers a whole lot of bang for the buck. It sets up quickly, providing a 3D-capable Blu-ray player and provides access to a nice selection of audio and video streaming services. While the speakers seem a little flimsy, for the price this can be overlooked, especially for anyone who loves movies but lacks the budget and space for a full-fledged component home theater system.


  • The SC-BTT195 is a good option for those looking for a modestly-priced all-in-one system to enjoy Blu-ray, DVD, internet streaming, and to enhance their audio listening experience, especially for movies, in a smaller room environment. For a home theater-in-a-box system in its price class, it is worth consideration.