Sony’s HT-ST7 Surround Bar Quick-Review

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Sony introduced the HT-ST7 sound bar speaker, a 7.1-channel sound bar and the company’s first-ever entry in the premium sound bar category.  Available at Sony Stores and authorized retailers across Canada this month for $1,399, the new Sony HT-ST7 sound bar speaker is packed with a feature set that complements Sony’s signature superior sound quality.  Unlike the regular sound bar, the Sony actually use a true 7.1 speaker array combined with their S-Force Pro Front Surround algorithm.   The sleek aluminum chassis of the Sony HT-ST7 sound bar speaker incorporates 9 independent speaker drivers and 7 discrete S-Master digital amplifiers.  Using both Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio decoders for high-definition audio decoding, this system delivers the master quality sound experience with deep, clean bass from its high quality dual driver (an active subwoofer coupled with a passive radiator) wireless subwoofer.  Each component is meticulously designed to deliver the best audio reproduction possible, which results in great imaging with a wide sound stage.

The HT-ST7 sound bar was engineered in collaboration with Academy Award-winning sound engineers at Sony Pictures Studios, and redefines “movie night at home” with Magnetic Fluid Speakers producing sound “larger” than speaker size suggests.  Coupled with Apt-X Bluetooth and NFC capabilities, the connection capabilities are endless.

 

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Previewing the unit and playing with its Harmonics Equalizer (for lossy audio files such as MP3), Voice Enhancer (to enhance dialogue level), I find the unit is also very capable to playback music quite effectively.  The subwoofer sound customization (you can choose whether you want a superquick response, regular response, or car-stereo “boom-boom”-like response) is also a very welcome addition for any subwoofer of any class.  I personally like the superquick response without any harmonics trailing but it’s going to be good for people who like boomy bass in order to give the psychoacoustic illusion that the bass is deeper than it actually is.

Last but not least, as listening at full reference level (85 dB average with up to 115 dB peak) is usually impossible, Sony also adds Sound Optimizer that compensates the equalization from listening at lower-than-reference volume levels.

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For full demo of the surround bar, you can visit UpdateTV & Stereo located at 10755 Leslie Street, Unit 5 (in Richmond Hill) or 255 Bass Pro Mills Drive, Unit 701 (in Vaughan just south of Vaughan Mills shopping centre).  I suggest you to take a listen to it.  It’s not often I can even handle the sound emanating from a soundbar but this sound bar is one of the extremely very few occasions that I actually can recommend one to anyone.

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