Sony SRS-DB500 2.1 PC Speaker System with S-Master Full Digital 300w Amplifier
Manufacturer: Sony
Source: Sony Centre
R.R.P: £199.99
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Connecting the Sony SRS-DB500 via the mini jack plug couldn't be simpler. This means that we could use the system as either a PC multimedia sound system connected to our PC or plug it into the headphone socket of our TV and use it to boost the sounds and music from our PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 to previously unheard levels of fidelity and realism. And should you want to listen in private then the speakers feature a headphone out jack. Separate controls let you fiddle with the volume, treble and bass and the wireless remote lets you control the system from across the room.

The Sony SRS-DB500 is equipped with a powerful S-Master Full digital amplifier with bass reflex, and if you want to make your gaming experiences on PC or console more realistic, or just want your music to sound how it's supposed to then this is the kind of 2.1 outfit you need. Many TVs now have decent enough integral speakers but the two 2.1ch speakers give an impressive 300W total power, and the 150w subwoofer supplies all the bass reflex you could need. Playing games like Call of Duty and Battlefield have never felt more real, and it brings games like Grand Theft Auto 4 to life as you can fully appreciate the ambient sound as it was intended. Deep rumbles of explosions, heavy vehicles or machinery actually sound like they should, and the subwoofer can make the ground shake when a tank rumbles by whether you're playing Battlefield: Bad Company 2 or watching Saving Private Ryan.

High-end treble sounds are handled well by the two 75w satellite speakers, and when used to play our PC music collection we really noticed what we'd been missing with our standard speakers, which in comparison will forever sound as tinny as a cheap portable transistor radio from now on. Some "expert" reviews have criticised the small speakers for being too light and lacking range, but with some careful adjustment of bass & treble levels we got a really nice, rich tone response for games, movies and music. Although I thought the main amplifier & subwoofer unit was rather large, actually only slightly smaller than my desktop PC's case (403mm) and required some planning as to where it would be placed, it certainly looks smart and contemporary and matches in well with any TV or PC with its flawless black finish and high-gloss detailing. The main control "knob" features an orange glowing "halo" effect that pulses in time with the output sounds, but we found it annoying and distracting when playing games or watching movies, so it's just as well you can turn this feature off via the remote.

Googling around we've found the SRS-DB500 on sale at much less than the RRP at some retailers, and once again us UK consumers seem to be getting shafted (no doubt thats due to VAT) with the typical Dollar=Pounds black goods exchange rate, as the unit is on sale for $199 or less in the US. so as always, it's worth shopping around. This is an impressive unit that delivers excellent sound quality, we're just not sure it delivers very good value, particularly when compared to some of the competition.

SRS-DB500 Features:

2.1ch PC Speaker System with massive 300W total power output delivering a rich, high-quality soundtrack for movie, music and gaming sessions.
S-Master full digital amplifier delivers rich and detailed sound for playback faithful to the original source.
Wireless remote control to adjust volume, bass, treble, switch music source and lighting effects.
Dual input RCA and stereo mini jack (standard headphone plug) for connecting your MP3 player, CD player or games console.
150W Bass Reflex system, with a long-stroke 160mm driver and powerful magnet, handles low-end frequencies and harmonics.
Mids and highs are delivered crisply and clearly by two satellite speakers (75W x 2).
Subwoofer system features built-in ‘Deco’ lighting effect with three illumination modes to choose from.

Best Bits

- Rich & booming sounds for games, music or movies.
- Simple connectivity to all your multimedia gadgets.
Worst Bits

- Large subwoofer seems like overkill
- 200 notes seems like a lot.

by: Jensen Buttons

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