Home-theater components reviewed on the SoundStage! Network in 2009. All prices are in US dollars unless otherwise noted and are accurate at the time of the review.

The entries are shown alphabetically by company name.


Price: $349

Website: www.cambridgeaudio.com

Roger said: Machines that can play SACDs and DVD-Audio discs in addition to DVD-Videos are becoming somewhat rare these days. A few years ago, many mass-market electronics companies offered such models, but “universal” players today are primarily the domain of specialty audio/video manufacturers. Cambridge Audio is one of those manufacturers that specialize in high-quality electronics at reasonable prices.

Read the Home Theater & Sound review.

The gist: A good DVD player for the three people still looking for a DVD player.


Price: $799

Website: www.dvdo.com

He said: For those of you who already have a good system but want to push its performance up that last step, DVDO’s Edge is the ticket. In its little area of the marketplace -- outboard video processors -- the Edge sets a new standard.

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Read the SoundStage! A/V review.

The gist: If you need a standalone video processor, here’s a good choice.


Price: $2000

Website: www.integrahometheater.com

He said: The $2000 Integra DHC-9.9 is the king of A/V processors under $7499.


Read the SoundStage! A/V review.

The gist: If you can’t afford the Anthem, get this.


Price: $499

Website: www.oppodigital.com

Roger said: I can’t think of another Blu-ray player at anywhere near its price that I would rather have in my system than the Oppo Digital BDP-83. It features excellent audio and video performance, state-of-the-art video processing, above-average build quality, and playback of both SACD and DVD-Audio.


Read the Home Theater & Sound review.

Read the SoundStage! A/V review.

The gist: The Blu-ray player to buy. Period.


Price: $99

Website: www.roku.com

He said: I’m afraid the Roku is another nail in the coffin of the spinning silver disc, a continuation of the shift in how we use media . . .


Read the SoundStage! A/V review.

The gist: One more reason discs are doomed.


Price: $1995.99

Website: www.sanyo.com

He said: The Sanyo PLV-Z700 has a great picture, loads of flexibility, deep menus, a bright picture, cannily chosen presets, and zero screen-door effect at any reasonable viewing distance. At $1600 or even $1995.99, the PLV-Z700 is a miracle -- a high-quality, high-definition LCD projector capable of offering a huge, bright, clean picture.


Read the SoundStage! A/V review.

The gist: Hits the bull’s eye of a quickly moving target: affordable projectors.


Price: $249.99

Website: www.sherwoodusa.com

Jeff said: While the Sherwood BDP-5003 is a capable enough player, as of this writing it costs only $50 less than the Panasonic DMP-BD60, which operates more smoothly and has an Ethernet port. It’s a value proposition: First, you have to decide if you care about BD-Live, and I’ve seen nothing to date that makes a compelling case to go there. Second, you have to decide whether a smoother interface and the ability to handle very poorly mastered discs is worth 50 bucks.

Read the Home Theater & Sound review.

The gist:And it’s only a Profile 1.1 player; you can do better.


Price: $249.95

Website: www.sherwoodusa.com

Jeff said: I’ve reviewed my share of inexpensive components over the years, but this is new territory for me. Designing an A/V receiver to sell for $249.95 would normally entail making many serious compromises that I think most engineers would find hard to accept. In this price class, every penny counts -- there’s little that can be done to improve a design without driving up its retail price. I don’t have a clue how Sherwood can build a receiver with the RD-6513’s feature set, sell it for $250, and still make a profit.

Read the Home Theater & Sound review.

The gist: Nothing fancy, but a good value.

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