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Sony Releases Three DVD Home Theater Systems: Can You Spot the Differences?

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Sony unveiled three new “DVD-integrated home theater solutions” this week, the DAV-HDX587WC, the DAV-HDX589W and the DAV-HDX285. No, I did not make those names up. Now I’m sitting here, going back and forth between the 587WC’s and the 589W’s product spec sheets, truly, deeply, sincerely wishing that I made this mess up, because for the life of me I cannot tell the difference between the two. Okay you know what? Let’s run with this Sony, let’s go, because I love you and your Playstations. Let’s pretend we have distinct models, and not Clark Kent with the glasses and Superman with the S-bangs.

First up we have the DAV-HDX587WC!

dav hdx587wc1

The DAV-HDX587WC, a 1000-watt, 5.1 channel BRAVIA system, continues Sony’s sleek & black theme. The puck you see in the middle of the image is an iPod cradle, which obviously allows you to connect an iPod to the DAV-HDX587WC, allowing you to play music and video from the iPod and through the DAV-HDX587WC. The DAV-HDX587WC also features DMPort Booster Technology, that “enhances the sound quality” of audio and video coming from a connected iPod.

The DAV-HDX587WC holds up to 5 discs at once and can play CD-DA, CD-R/RW, DVD-R/RW, DVD Video, MP3 & JPEG formats. It can also upscale DVDs to near-HD quality if an HDMI cable is used to connect the DAV-HDX587WC to an HDTV. Finally, the DAV-HDX587WC is fully compatible with Sony’s S-Air technology, which allows users to wirelessly stream music from a central source to remote speakers. The DAV-HDX587WC includes a AIR-SA10 wireless speaker. Sony is already accepting pre-orders for the DAV-HDX587WC for $430 USD. Also, the image of the DAV-HDX587WC has the tall speakers flanking the rest of the system.

Now let’s look at the DAV-HDX589W!

dav hdx589w

The DAV-HDX589W, a 1000-watt, 5.1 channel BRAVIA system, continues Sony’s sleek & black theme. The puck you see on the lower left of the image is an iPod cradle, which obviously allows you to connect an iPod to the DAV-HDX589W, allowing you to play music and video from the iPod and through the DAV-HDX589W. The DAV-HDX589W also features DMPort Booster Technology, that “enhances the sound quality” of audio and video coming from a connected iPod.

The DAV-HDX589W holds up to 5 discs at once and can play CD-DA, CD-R/RW, DVD-R/RW, DVD Video, MP3 & JPEG formats. It can also upscale DVDs to near-HD quality if an HDMI cable is used to connect the DAV-HDX589W to an HDTV. Finally, the DAV-HDX589W is fully compatible with Sony’s S-Air technology, which allows users to wirelessly stream music from a central source to remote speakers. The DAV-HDX589W includes a TA-SA100W wireless speaker. Sony is already accepting pre-orders for the DAV-HDX589W for $430 USD. Also, the image of the DAV-HDX589W has the tall speakers bunched up together on the right side.

If you’re still with me then I’m sure you will agree when I say that the person who came up with these models and the person who created Where’s Waldo must be one and the same. One and the same. Because the only real distinction between the two units are the included S-AIR accessories. The core systems are the same, it’s the S-Air speakers which are different. I fear that the 40GB PS3 may soon be called PSC340XGB while the 160GB PS3 will be PSX3X1X6X0BGXXXXHDXC.

Here’s the S-Air speaker that the DAV-HDX587WC has, the SA-10:

587 s airsa10

And here is the S-Air speaker that the DAV-HDX589W has, the TA-SA100W:

ta sa100w

Yep. As of now the TA-SA100W does not exist. So if I were you I’d get the DAV-HDX587WC, or the third model, the DAV-HDX285, which will sell for a much lower price of $300 USD. I’ll cut through the Waldo and tell you that yes, it’s very similar to the more expensive models except that it doesn’t have an included S-Air wireless speaker (but the system is still compatible with said S-Air speakers) and it has two small speakers in place of the two tall ones. You’re welcome mom and dad.

dav hdx285

If you don’t believe me – I can barely believe me myself – check out Sony’s product page for these systems. $5 says you’ll be squinting and cursing the whole time you’re there. The product names in this article link to the corresponding page; you can also pre-order each system from their respective product pages.

All three HT systems come with an “Easy Setup” disc “that provides step-by-step instructions on how to set-up the main unit, wire speaker cables and calibrate all system speakers.” In addition to that, I wish Sony would include an “Easy to Understand and Differentiate Product Models” disc. Or maybe a “Let’s Sell the Home Theaters as Core Units at Lower Prices and Then Give the Customers the Option to Buy the S-Air Speakers at a Lower Price for Each Purchase of a Home Theater System” disc.





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